Learning Diary – Lecture 8

Hi everybody!

This week we went through the motor system and how it is controlled by both the spinal cord and the motor cortex. The lecture started as always with the quiz about the chapter of the book we had to read to prepare for the lecture. The questions of the quiz were quite well organized and they were really useful to test our basic knowledge on the topic before the lecture. We are wondering what kind of question we will have in the final exam, something closer to the exercises question or to the quiz question?

The lecture was really interesting, notably because we had the possibility to go through the two chapters concerning the motor system and thus to have a good overview of the topic. It was particularly fascinating to learn about the several reflexes existing in our motor system. Everybody knows in general what a reflex is and everyone has tried at least once to trigger a muscle response tapping under the knee (knee-jerk reflex). Thus, it was satisfying to finally understand why we do this and why this “mechanical stimulus” should work. We did not even know that this test was made to test the intactness of the nerves and muscles in this reflex arc. Other interesting topics were the flexor withdrawal reflex, the Golgi organ circuit and the crossed-extensor reflex.

Looking forward for next week and the two planned excursions,

Laura, Leonardo and Hugues

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