Spinal Interneurons as Gatekeepers to Neuroplasticity after Injury or Disease
Lyandysha V Zholudeva, Victoria E Abraira, Kajana Satkunendrarajah, Todd C McDevitt, Martyn D Goulding, David S K Magnuson, Michael A Lane
Spinal interneurons are important facilitators and modulators of motor, sensory, and autonomic functions in the intact CNS. This heterogeneous population of neurons is now widely appreciated to be a key component of plasticity and recovery. This review highlights our current understanding of spinal interneuron heterogeneity, their contribution to control and modulation of motor and sensory functions, and how this role might change after traumatic spinal cord injury. We also offer a perspective for how treatments can optimize the contribution of interneurons to functional improvement.