Patterns of fusimotor innervation by γ-efferents in cat peroneus tertius

J. Petit, W. E. Cameron, K. S.K. Murthy, L. A. Barone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The pattern of γ-efferent innervation of the muscle spindle was investigated in the peroneus tertius muscle of the cat. A number of spindle group Ia afferents were isolated and monitored during tetanic stimulation of isolated γ-axons. The sample was dominated by efferents producing a static fusimotor effect on the afferent. An individual static axon normally projected to less than five but at times as many as seven muscle spindles. Each spindle normally received innervation from three to five static γ-efferents but occasionally up to eight. The number of spindles innervated by a static γ-axon was directly related to the efferent axonal conduction velocity. For each experiment, a probability distribution of the number of fusimotor effects was constructed from all available connections between the muscle spindles and static γ-efferents considered in matrices of four afferents and four efferents. This distribution was then compared to a random binomial distribution. In each of the ten experiments, statistically significant differences (p<0.01) were noted between the experimental and random distributions. In order to interpret such deviations from the random distributions, similar analyses were performed on various combinations of afferents and efferents in simulated sets displaying grouping of effects. It was concluded that the observed differences between experimental and random distributions may be produced by a grouping of fusimotor innervation limited to a small set of spindles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-152
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 1983


  • Fusmotor innervation
  • Muscle spindles
  • γ-Efferents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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