This research seeks to define the neuronal and synaptic plasticity in selected somatosensory and motor systems of the macaque monkey following experimental manipulations that serve as models for normal function of the human nervous system and altered function following disease or injury. Tow specific neural networks will be the focus of the studies: 1) The somatosensory thalamus following acute and chronic spinal cord lesions that involve afferent systems known to be damaged in central pain states in humans as a result of spinal cord injury and, 2) The inferior olivary nuclear complex (IO) of normal macaques, in which we will determine the synaptic organization of major afferent systems to the IO, and whether that organization is altered in the rostral dorsal accessory olive (rDAO) in animals following lesions of the afferent projections from either the spinal cord or the dorsal column nuclei. The olivo-cerebellar system is believed to participate in the learning and timing of movements in animals and in humans. The overall goal is the understanding of the changes that occur following injury, so that new methods of therapy can be developed to address these changes.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Research Project (R01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-IFCN-5 (01))
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Chen, Daofen
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University of California San Francisco
Anatomy/Cell Biology
Schools of Medicine
San Francisco
United States
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Vanderhorst, V G J M; Terasawa, E; Ralston 3rd, H J (2009) Estrogen receptor-alpha immunoreactive neurons in the brainstem and spinal cord of the female rhesus monkey: species-specific characteristics. Neuroscience 158:798-810
Ralston 3rd, Henry J (2005) Pain and the primate thalamus. Prog Brain Res 149:1-10
VanderHorst, V G J M; Terasawa, E; Ralston 3rd, H J (2004) Projections from estrogen receptor-alpha immunoreactive neurons in the periaqueductal gray to the lateral medulla oblongata in the rhesus monkey. Neuroscience 125:243-53
DeArmond, Stephen J (2004) Discovering the mechanisms of neurodegeneration in prion diseases. Neurochem Res 29:1979-98
Ralston 3rd, Henry J (2003) Pain, the brain, and the (calbindin) stain. J Comp Neurol 459:329-33
Vanderhorst, Veronique G J M; Terasawa, Ei; Ralston 3rd, Henry J (2002) Axonal sprouting of a brainstem-spinal pathway after estrogen administration in the adult female rhesus monkey. J Comp Neurol 454:82-103
Vanderhorst, Veronique G J M; Terasawa, Ei; Ralston 3rd, Henry J (2002) Estrogen receptor-alpha immunoreactive neurons in the ventrolateral periaqueductal gray receive monosynaptic input from the lumbosacral cord in the rhesus monkey. J Comp Neurol 443:27-42
VanderHorst, V G; Terasawa, E; Ralston 3rd, H J (2001) Monosynaptic projections from the nucleus retroambiguus region to laryngeal motoneurons in the rhesus monkey. Neuroscience 107:117-25
Ohara, P T; Tauscher, A N; LaVail, J H (2001) Two paths for dissemination of Herpes simplex virus from infected trigeminal ganglion to the murine cornea. Brain Res 899:260-3
Bouzamondo, E; Milroy, A M; Ralston 3rd, H J et al. (2000) Selective neuronal vulnerability during experimental scrapie infection: insights from an ultrastructural investigation. Brain Res 874:210-5

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