Electrical stimulation of visceral afferent pathways in the pelvic nerve increases c-fos in the rat lumbosacral spinal cord

Neurosci Lett. 1991 Aug 19;129(2):193-6. doi: 10.1016/0304-3940(91)90459-7.


Electrical stimulation (20-35 Hz, 2-5 V, 1.5 h) of the pelvic nerve in urethane-anesthetized rats increased the expression of c-fos protein-immunoreactivity primarily in neurons in the L6-S1 segments of the spinal cord. The neurons were localized to areas receiving afferent input from the pelvic viscera including the superficial dorsal horn, the dorsal commissure, and lateral laminae V-VII in the region of the sacral parasympathetic nucleus. These experiments indicate that (1) electrical stimulation of abdominal nerves following surgical exposure is a useful method for tracing visceral afferent pathways and (2) afferent information from the pelvic viscera is received by neurons in specific areas of the dorsal horn.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Female
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Neural Pathways / physiology
  • Neurons, Afferent / physiology*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos / immunology
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Reflex / physiology
  • Spinal Cord / cytology
  • Spinal Cord / metabolism*
  • Spinal Cord / physiology


  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos