Research Papers:

Efficacy of different spinal nerve roots for neuromodulation of micturition reflex in rats

Jianshu Ni _, Xiaohu Wang, Nailong Cao, Jiemin Si and Baojun Gu

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:13382-13389. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.23950

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Jianshu Ni1,*, Xiaohu Wang1,*, Nailong Cao1, Jiemin Si1 and Baojun Gu1

1Department of Urology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University Affiliated Sixth People’s Hospital, Shanghai, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Baojun Gu, email: [email protected]

Keywords: spinal nerve root; micturition reflex; ventral root; dorsal root; pseudorabies virus

Received: April 27, 2017     Accepted: November 16, 2017     Published: January 04, 2018


Electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves controlling the bladder is an alternative, nondestructive medical treatment for urinary incontinence and retention. In this study, we aimed to identify the most efficient sensory and motor spinal nerve roots involved in the micturition reflex. Unilateral L5-S2 dorsal and ventral roots were electrically stimulated, and bladder reflex contractions were recorded under isovolumetric conditions. Repeated stimulation of the L6 and S1 dorsal roots not only abolished bladder reflex contractions but also induced a poststimulation inhibitory effect, whereas repeated stimulation of the L5 and S2 dorsal roots had no effect. Only the L6 ventral root directly caused bladder contraction when ventral roots L5-S2 were stimulated in sequence. Upon retrograde tracing using pseudorabies virus (PRV), the sacral parasympathetic nucleus of the L6 segment had more PRV-positive cells than the other segments, though the S1 segment of the dorsal root ganglia had the highest density of PRV-positive neurons. These results suggest the L6 ventral root is most efficient in producing detrusor muscle contraction, and the S1 dorsal root best inhibits the micturition reflex.

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