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Neurophysiological Basis of Movement-2nd Edition

Neurophysiological Basis of Movement-2nd Edition

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    Neurophysiological Basis of Movement, Second Edition, has been thoroughly updated and expanded, making it more comprehensive and accessible to students. With eight new chapters and 130 pages of fresh material, this second edition covers a wide range of topics, including movement disorders and current theories of motor control and coordination. By emphasizing the neurophysiological mechanisms relevant to the processes of generating voluntary movements, the text targets advanced undergraduates or beginning graduate students who want to better understand how the brain generates control signals and how the peripheral apparatus executes them.

    The new chapters in Neurophysiological Basis of Movement, Second Edition, focus on motor control and motor synergies, prehension, changes in movement with aging, typical and atypical development, neuromuscular peripheral disorders, and disorders of the spinal cord, basal ganglia, cerebellum, and cortex. The text is designed so that instructors can cover all chapters or select the topics most relevant to their specific courses. In addition, this edition of Neurophysiological Basis of Movement offers these features:

    • A new reference section with more than 700 references, providing supplemental resources that encourage students to read and understand research literature on the neurophysiology of movements
    • A more reader-friendly presentation of material with an added color, improved illustrations, and introductions to the chapters that provide better transitions
    • A new PowerPoint presentation package that includes 8 to 15 slides of art and text for every chapter, helping instructors prepare for lectures and allowing students to better understand the material

    Author Mark Latash presents the material using six levels, or worlds, of analysis of the neurophysiology of movements. These worlds are cells, connections, structures, behaviors (control and coordination), evolving and changing behaviors, and motor disorders. The first three levels are the basis for the analysis of a variety of actions, such as standing, locomotion, eye movements, and reaching. Further, changes in movement with fatigue, development, aging, disorder, and rehabilitation are discussed.

    The text also presents six labs to help students perform experiments to address typical “template” research problems, and one-minute drills and self-test questions encourage students to think independently and to test their knowledge as they read. The answers to the self-test questions require students to think critically and explain why they selected a particular answer, as the problems have several answers with varying degrees of correctness.

    Neurophysiological Basis of Movement, Second Edition, promotes independent thinking and enhances knowledge of basic facts about the design of cells, muscles, neuronal structures, and the whole body for better understanding of typical and atypical movement production related to the nervous system and the functioning brain.


    A text for upper-level undergraduate and entry-level graduate courses on the neurophysiology of voluntary movement and on motor disorders associated with dysfunctions of central and peripheral structures. A reference for specialists in motor behavior, neuroscience, and motor rehabilitation.

    Table of Contents

    World I. Cells

    Chapter 1. Membranes, Particles, and Potentials
    1.1. Complex System Approach
    1.2. The Biological Membrane
    1.3. Movement in a Solution
    1.4. Concentration of Water: Osmosis
    1.5. Movement of Ions: The Nernst Equation

    Chapter 2. Action Potential
    2.1. Creation of Membrane Potential
    2.2. Basic Features of Action Potential
    2.3. Mechanism of Generation of Action Potential

    Chapter 3. Information Conduction and Transmission
    3.1. Conduction of Action Potential
    3.2. Myelinated Fibers
    3.3. The Structure of Neuron
    3.4. Information Coding in the Nervous System
    3.5. Synaptic Transmission
    3.6. Neurotransmitters
    3.7. Temporal and Spatial Summation

    Chapter 4. Skeletal Muscle
    4.1. Skeletal muscle: Structure
    4.2. Myofilaments
    4.3. Neuromuscular Synapse
    4.4. Mechanism of Contraction
    4.5. Types of Muscle Contraction
    4.6. Elements of Mechanics
    4.7. Force–Length and Force–Velocity Relations
    4.8. External Regimes of Muscle Contraction

    Chapter 5. Receptors
    5.1. General Classification and Properties of Receptors
    5.2. Muscle Spindles
    5.3. The Gamma System
    5.4. Golgi Tendon Organs
    5.5. Other Muscle Receptors
    5.6. Articular Receptors
    5.7. Cutaneous Receptors
    5.8. Where Does the Information Go?

    Chapter 6. Motor Units and Electromyography
    6.1. The Notion of Motor Unit
    6.2. Fast and Slow Motor Units
    6.3. The Henneman Principle (the Size Principle)
    6.4. Functional Role of Motor Units
    6.5. Electromyography
    6.6. Filtering, Rectification, and Integration

    World I Problems

    World II. Connections

    Chapter 7. Excitation and Inhibition Within the Spinal Cord
    7.1. The Spinal Cord
    7.2. Excitation Within the Central Nervous System
    7.3. Postsynaptic Inhibition
    7.4. Renshaw Cells
    7.5. Ia-Interneurons
    7.6. Presynaptic Inhibition
    7.7. Persistent Inward Current

    Chapter 8. Monosynaptic Reflexes
    8.1. Reflexes
    8.2. Reflex Arc
    8.3. H- and T-Reflexes and M-Response
    8.4. Effects of Voluntary Muscle Activation on Monosynaptic Reflexes
    8.5. F-Wave

    Chapter 9. Oligosynaptic and Polysynaptic Reflexes
    9.1. Oligosynaptic Reflexes
    9.2. Polysynaptic Reflexes
    9.3. Flexor Reflex
    9.4. Tonic Stretch Reflex
    9.5. Tonic Vibration Reflex
    9.6. Interaction Among Reflex Pathways
    9.7. Interjoint and Interlimb Reflexes

    Chapter 10. Voluntary Control of a Single Muscle
    10.1. Feedforward and Feedback Control
    10.2. Servo Control
    10.3. The Servo-Hypothesis
    10.4. Alpha-Gamma Coactivation
    10.5. Voluntary Activation of Muscles
    10.6. Equilibrium-Point Control

    Chapter 11. Patterns of Single-Joint Movements
    11.1. Isotonic Movements and Isometric Contractions
    11.2. Performance and Task Parameters
    11.3. EMG Patterns During Single-Joint Isotonic Movements
    11.4. EMG Patterns During Single-Joint Isometric Contractions
    11.5. The Dual-Strategy Hypothesis

    Chapter 12. Preprogrammed Reactions
    12.1. Preprogrammed Reactions
    12.2. Preprogrammed Reaction Is not a Stretch Reflex
    12.3. In Search of the Afferent Source of Preprogrammed Reactions
    12.4. Preprogrammed Reactions During Movement Perturbations
    12.5. Basic Features of Preprogrammed Reactions
    12.6. Preprogrammed Corrections of Vertical Posture
    12.7. Corrective Stumbling Reaction

    World II Problems

    World III. Structures

    Chapter 13. Elements of the Brain Anatomy
    13.1. Single-Neuron Recording
    13.2. Electroencephalography
    13.3. Evoked Potentials
    13.4. Radiography
    13.5. Computerized Tomography
    13.6. Positron Emission Tomography
    13.7. Magnetic Resonance Imaging
    13.8. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging
    13.9. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
    13.10. Neuroanatomical Tracing
    13.11. Major Brain Structures

    Chapter 14. Cerebral Cortex
    14.1. Cerebral Hemispheres
    14.2. Structure of the Cerebral Cortex
    14.3. Primary Motor and Premotor Areas
    14.4. Inputs to Motor Cortex
    14.5. Outputs of Motor Cortex
    14.6. Preparation for a Voluntary Movement
    14.7. Neuronal Population Vectors
    14.8. What Variables May Be Encoded in the Cortical Neuronal Activity?

    Chapter 15. The Cerebellum
    15.1. Anatomy of the Cerebellum
    15.2. Cerebellar Inputs
    15.3. Cerebellar Outputs
    15.4. Relation of Cerebellar Activity to Voluntary Movement
    15.5. Neuronal Population Vectors
    15.6. The Effects of Cerebellar Lesions

    Chapter 16. The Basal Ganglia
    16.1. Anatomy of the Basal Ganglia
    16.2. Inputs and Outputs of the Basal Ganglia
    16.3. Motor Circuits Involving the Basal Ganglia
    16.4. Activity of Basal Ganglia During Movements
    16.5. Effects of Lesions of the Basal Ganglia

    Chapter 17. Ascending and Descending Pathways
    17.1. Basic Properties of Neural Pathways
    17.2. Afferent Input to the Spinal Cord
    17.3. Dorsal Column Pathway
    17.4. Spinocervical Pathway
    17.5. Spinothalamic Tract
    17.6. Spinocerebellar Tracts
    17.7. Spinoreticular Tract
    17.8. Pyramidal Tract
    17.9. Rubrospinal Tract
    17.10. Vestibulospinal Tracts
    17.11. Reticulospinal Tracts and Other Descending Tracts
    17.12. Propriospinal Tracts
    17.13. Cranial Nerves

    Chapter 18. Memory
    18.1. Descartes' Dualism and Cellular Mechanisms of Memory
    18.2. Muscle Memory
    18.3. Types of Memory and Learning
    18.4. Habituation of Reflexes: An Example of Nonassociative Learning
    18.5. Conditioned Reflexes: An Example of Associative Learning
    18.6. Motor Learning
    18.7. Short-Term and Long-Term Memory
    18.8. Neuronal and Synaptic Mechanisms of Memory
    18.9. Retrieval of Memory
    18.10. Genetic Code as an Example of Memory
    18.11. Plasticity in the Brain
    18.12. Korsakoff Syndrome
    18.13. Possible Role of Hippocampus and Cerebellum in Memory
    18.14. Spinal Memory

    World III Problems

    World IV. Behaviors: Control and Coordination

    Chapter 19. General Issues of Motor Control
    19.1. Design of the Human Body: A Source of Problems
    19.2 Force Control
    19.3. Engrams and the Generalized Motor Program
    19.4. Internal Models
    19.5. The Equilibrium-Point Hypothesis: The Main Ideas
    19.6. The Equilibrium-Point Hypothesis: More Subtle Points
    19.7. Dynamic Systems Approach

    Chapter 20. Motor Synergies
    20.1. Motor Redundancy Problem
    20.2. Optimization Approaches
    20.3. Principle of Abundance
    20.4. Structural Units and Synergies
    20.5. Studies of Motor Synergies: Principal Component Analysis
    20.6. Uncontrolled Manifold Hypothesis

    Chapter 21. Postural Control
    21.1. Vertical Posture
    21.2. Postural Sway
    21.3. Vestibular System
    21.4. The Role of Vision in Postural Control
    21.5. The Role of Proprioception in Postural Control
    21.6. Anticipatory Postural Adjustments
    21.7. Corrective Postural Reactions
    21.8. Postural Synergies

    Chapter 22. Locomotion
    22.1. Two Approaches to Locomotion
    22.2. Central Pattern Generator
    22.3. Locomotor Centers
    22.4. Spinal Locomotion
    22.5. Spinal Control of Locomotion in Humans
    22.6. Gait Patterns
    22.7. Dynamic Pattern Generation
    22.8. Step Initiation
    22.9. Corrective Stumbling Reaction

    Chapter 23. Multijoint Movement
    23.1. General Features of Targeted Reaching Movements
    23.2. Major Problems of Controlling Natural Reaching Movements
    23.3. Interjoint Reflexes
    23.4. Spinal Mechanisms of Multijoint Coordination
    23.5. Supraspinal Mechanisms
    23.6. The Equilibrium-Trajectory Hypothesis
    23.7. What Is Controlled During Multijoint Movements?

    Chapter 24. Prehension
    24.1. Hand Joints and Muscles
    24.2. Cortical Representations of the Hand
    24.3. Indices of Finger Interaction
    24.4. Multifinger Synergies in Pressing Tasks
    24.5. Grasping
    24.6. Prehension Synergies and the Principle of Superposition

    Chapter 25. Eye Movement and Vision
    25.1. The Eye
    25.2. Photoreceptors
    25.3. Retina and Optic Nerve
    25.4. Oculomotor Control
    25.5. Central Mechanisms of Visual Perception
    25.6. The Role of Visual Information in Voluntary Movements

    Chapter 26. Kinesthesia
    26.1. Which Physical Variables Are Sensed by Proprioceptors?
    26.2. Peripheral Sources of Kinesthetic Information
    26.3. The Role of the Motor Command in Kinesthesia
    26.4. Where Does the Information Go?
    26.5. Kinesthetic Illusions
    26.6. Pain

    World IV Problems

    World V. Evolving and Changing Behaviors

    Chapter 27. Fatigue
    27.1. Fatigue and Its Contributors
    27.2. Muscular Mechanisms of Fatigue
    27.3. Spinal Mechanisms of Fatigue
    27.4. Supraspinal Mechanisms of Fatigue
    27.5. Adaptive Changes During Fatigue
    27.6. Abnormal Fatigue

    Chapter 28. Effects of Aging
    28.1. General Features of Movements in Elderly
    28.2. Changes in Muscles and Motor units With Age
    28.3. Muscle Reflexes in Elderly
    28.4. Changes in the Sensory Function
    28.5. Muscle Activation Patterns During Fast Movements
    28.6. Changes in Posture and Gait with Age
    28.7. Hand Function in Elderly
    28.8. Adaptive Changes in Motor Patterns
    28.9. Effects of Training

    Chapter 29. Typical and Atypical Development
    29.1. Humans at Birth
    29.2. Motor Milestones During Typical Development
    29.3. Exploration and Emergent Motor Patterns
    29.4. Down Syndrome
    29.5. Effects of Practice in Down Syndrome
    29.6. Autism
    29.7. Development Coordination Disorder

    World VI. Motor Disorders

    Chapter 30. Peripheral Muscular and Neurological Disorders
    30.1. Myopathies and Neuropathies
    30.2. Muscular Dystrophies
    30.3. Continuous Muscle Fiber Activity Syndromes
    30.4. Myasthenia Gravis
    30.5 Peripheral Neuropathies
    30.6. Motor Disorders Associated With Diabetes
    30.7 Radiculopathies
    30.8. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    Chapter 31. Spinal Cord Injury and Spasticity
    31.1. Consequence of Spinal Cord Injury
    31.2. Signs and Symptoms of Spasticity
    31.3. Possible Mechanisms of Spasticity
    31.4. Treatment of Spasticity
    31.5. Multiple Sclerosis

    Chapter 32. Disorders Involving the Basal Ganglia
    32.1. Clinical Features of Parkinson's Disease
    32.2. Voluntary Movements in Parkinson's Disease
    32.3. Changes in Postural Control and Locomotion
    32.4. Treatment of Parkinson’s Disease
    32.5. Huntington’s Chorea
    32.6. Hemiballismus
    32.7. Dystonia
    32.8. Tardive Diskinesia

    Chapter 33. Cerebellar Disorders
    33.1. Consequences of Cerebellar Injuries in Animals
    33.2. Causes of Cerebellar Disorders
    33.3. Abnormalities of Stance and Gait
    33.4. Voluntary Movements in Cerebellar Disorders
    33.5. Cerebellar Tremor
    33.6. Ataxias
    33.7. Cerebellar Cognitive Affective Syndrome

    Chapter 34. Cortical Disorders
    34.1. Consequences of Lesions of Cortical Lobes
    34.2. Stroke
    34.3. Myoclonus
    34.4. Essential Tremor
    34.5. Tics
    34.6. Tourette’s Syndrome
    34.7. Cerebral Palsy
    34.8. Williams Syndrome
    34.9. Wilson’s Disease

    Chapter 35. Implications for Motor Rehabilitation
    35.1. Do “Normal Movements” Exist?
    35.2. Back to the Problem of Structural Units and Synergies
    35.3. Changes in CNS Priorities
    35.4. The Role of CNS Plasticity
    35.5. Adaptive Changes in Motor Patterns of Atypical Individuals
    35.6. Amputation
    35.7. Practical Considerations

    Worlds V and VI Problems

    Laboratory 1
    Laboratory 2
    Laboratory 3
    Laboratory 4
    Laboratory 5
    Laboratory 6

    Subject index

    About the Author

    Mark L. Latash, PhD, is a professor in the department of kinesiology at Penn State University in University Park, Pennsylvania. Dr. Latash has authored two other books, edited or coedited six other books, and published more than 200 peer-reviewed articles. He also initiated, and has edited for more than 10 years, the scientific journal Motor Control. Latash organized a series of conferences called Progress in Motor Control and has served as president for the International Society of Motor Control. He is a member of the Society for Neuroscience and the American Society of Biomechanics, and he is a fellow of the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education (AAKPE).

    Dr. Latash was appointed a distinguished professor of kinesiology in 2005 and has received numerous other awards, including some from Penn State, the University of Otago in New Zealand, and AAKPE. In his leisure time, he enjoys hiking, mushroom hunting, reading, and playing soccer.


    “This is a valuable resource for students and entry-level professionals in fields related to motor control. The author has diligently and successfully critiqued his previous edition to produce a book that can help students learn and teachers facilitate in a critical thinking environment.” -Doody's Book Review Service


    All ancillary materials are FREE to course adopters and available online at

    Presentation package. The presentation package for Neurophysiological Basis of Movement, Second Edition, includes more than 680 PowerPoint slides of graphs, line drawings, and text from the book that instructors can use for class discussion and illustration.

    The slides in the presentation package can be used directly within PowerPoint, or be printed to make transparencies or handouts for distribution to students. Instructors can easily add, modify, and rearrange the order of the slides as well as search for images based on key words.

    The presentation package is also available for purchase • ISBN 978-0-7360-6976-2