The Tangential Nucleus Controls a Gravito-inertial Vestibulo-ocular Reflex

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The Tangential Nucleus Controls a Gravito-inertial Vestibulo-ocular Reflex

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Title: The Tangential Nucleus Controls a Gravito-inertial Vestibulo-ocular Reflex
Author: Bianco, Isaac; Ma, Leung-Hang; Schoppik, David E; Robson, Drew Norman; Orger, Michael B.; Beck, James C.; Li, Jennifer Mengbo; Schier, Alexander F; Engert, Florian; Baker, Robert

Note: Order does not necessarily reflect citation order of authors.

Citation: Bianco, Isaac H., Leung-Hang Ma, David Schoppik, Drew N. Robson, Michael B. Orger, James C. Beck, Jennifer M. Li, and et al. 2012. The tangential nucleus controls a gravito-inertial vestibulo-ocular reflex. Current Biology 22, no. 14: 1285-1295.
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Abstract: Whilst adult vertebrates sense changes in head position using two classes of accelerometer, at larval stages zebrafish lack functional semicircular canals and rely exclusively on their otolithic organs to transduce vestibular information. Despite this limitation, they perform an effective vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) that serves to stabilize gaze in response to pitch and roll tilts. Using single-cell electroporations and targeted laser-ablations, we identified a specific class of central vestibular neurons, located in the tangential nucleus, which are essential for the utricle-dependent VOR. Tangential nucleus neurons project contralaterally to extraocular motoneurons, and in addition, to multiple sites within the reticulospinal complex. We propose that tangential neurons function as a broadband inertial accelerometer, processing utricular acceleration signals to control the activity of extraocular and postural neurons, thus completing a fundamental three-neuron circuit responsible for gaze stabilization.
Published Version: doi:10.1016/j.cub.2012.05.026
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