Motor System and Movement I: Reflex Activity, Central Pattern Generators and Cerebral Cortical Motor Functions

  • Elliott M. Marcus
  • Stanley Jacobson


In studying the motor system, we will consider reflex activity, central generators of patterns of movement, voluntary movement and learned movements .We will also consider two inter-related aspects: posture and movement. Under posture we will be studying static or tonic reactions. Under movement we will be studying short duration phasic reactions. We should keep in mind, as Sherrington has indicated, that the reflexes involved in posture and movement are the same. There are no reflexes exclusively for the maintenance of a correct posture, as opposed to those reflexes involved in a movement, We should note that with more detailed microelectrode studies we may find that some neurons in the cerebral cortex or spinal cord are predominantly involved in phasic activities and other predominantly in tonic activities.


Motor Cortex Superior Colliculus Pyramidal Tract Premotor Cortex Prefrontal Area 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elliott M. Marcus
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Stanley Jacobson
    • 4
  1. 1.University of Massachusetts School of MedicineUSA
  2. 2.Tufts University School of MedicineUSA
  3. 3.Dept. of NeurologySt. Vincent Hospital and Fallon ClinicUSA
  4. 4.Tufts University Health Science CampusBostonUSA

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