Serotonin and motor activity

Barry L. Jacobs, Casimir A. Fornal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

259 Scopus citations


The activity of brain serotonergic neurons in both the pontine-mesencephalic and medullary groups is positively correlated with the level of behavioral arousal and/or the behavioral state. This, in turn, appears to be related to the level of tonic motor activity, especially as manifested in antigravity muscles and other muscle groups associated with gross motor activity. In addition, a subset of serotonergic neurons displays a further increase in activity in association with repetitive, central pattern generator mediated responses. Accumulating evidence indicates that this relation to motor activity is related both to the co-activation of the sympathetic nervous system and to the modulation of afferent inputs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)820-825
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Neurobiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience


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