Motor_DevProject reference: 329718
Funded under :
Sensory feedback in the development of motor cortex: underlying physiological network mechanisms and its relation to epileptic discharges
Total cost:EUR 194 046,6
EU contribution:EUR 194 046,6
Topic(s):FP7-PEOPLE-2012-IEF - Marie-Curie Action: "Intra-European fellowships for career development"
Call for proposal:FP7-PEOPLE-2012-IEFSee other projects for this call
Funding scheme:MC-IEF - Intra-European Fellowships (IEF)
Early in development, spontaneous bursts of activity at the level of the spinal cord trigger spontaneous twitches of corresponding groups of muscles fibres. Twitching provides sensory feedback that generates specific neuronal oscillations in somatosensory cortex. The proposed project will address, in first line, if sensory feedback provided by spontaneous muscle twitches evokes specific patterns of neuronal activity in motor cortex. This could occur via functional projections arising from somatosensory cortex and/or thalamic nuclei, which have been demonstrated in adults. These activity patterns will be studied as substrates for the development of motor cortex, and their developmental changes will be characterized in relation to the formation of its main output, the corticospinal tract, and developmental twitching elimination. In addition, the proposed project will address if under pathological conditions, spontaneous muscle twitches trigger epileptic discharges in motor cortex. It is anticipated that such discharges are asymptomatic prior to, but are manifested by epileptic jerks upon the formation of the corticospinal tract. Using a combination of cutting-edge electrophysiological and imaging techniques, in vivo, the results are expected to provide the first insights on if and how peripheral stimuli induce the expression of neuronal oscillations in the developing motor cortex, and on how this may guide its maturation. Moreover and of great clinical importance, the results will provide a mechanistic explanation for the phenomenon of electroclinical uncoupling in neonatal epilepsy.
EU contribution: EUR 194 046,6
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