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The Development of Nociceptive Network Activity in the Somatosensory Cortex of Freely Moving Rat Pups

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  • Ref The Development of Nociceptive Network Activity in the Somatosensory Cortex of Freely Moving Rat Pups

    Pain is essential for survival and even newborn mammals need to process the sensory input from tissue damaging or threatening stimuli. However, while protective spinal and brainstem mediated nociceptive reflexes are evident from before birth, the higher-level brain processing required for perception, learning, and memory of pain develops postnatally with increased exposure to the environment. In adult humans, it is now recognized that the conscious experience of pain arises from a dynamic change in a distributed network of brain activity (Davis et al. 2015; Kucyi and Davis 2015; Mano and Seymour 2015; Woo et al.2015). The primary somatosensory cortex (S1) forms part of a pattern of cortical activity that is highly sensitive and specific to pain (Mancini et al. 2012), as manipulated by nociceptive input (Wager et al. 2013; Woo et al. 2015). Importantly, this activity is not simply a measure of noxious input, but tracks subjective pain more closely than the noxious stimulus itself. The somatosensory cortex appears to be related to a combination of nociceptive and affective aspects of pain, as distinct from evaluative and self-regulatory aspects (Wager et al. 2013; Woo et al. 2015). Since both newborn rat (Thairu 1971; Chang et al. 2016) and human S1 (Slater et al. 2006; Goksan et al. 2015; Verriotis et al. 2016) receives functional nociceptive thalamocortical inputs, this cortical region represents an appropriate brain area in which to begin to study the maturation of cortical pain networks.
    via @dibbygibby
    Jo Bowyer
    Chartered Physiotherapist Registered Osteopath.
    "Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,there is a field. I'll meet you there." Rumi
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