The re­sponse mech­a­nism

Your Horse (UK) - - Your Horse's Care -

If your horse feels pain due to a horse­fly bite on the leg, pain-sen­si­tive cells in his skin will feel it and re­lease neu­ro­trans­mit­ters, which start the trans­mis­sion of the sig­nal up to the spinal cord through the nerves to the sen­sory neu­rons. They will then bounce this sig­nal to the brain’s neu­rons. “The need for a very quick re­sponse will also gen­er­ate a re­flex, which in­volves the sen­si­tive neu­rons send­ing the in­for­ma­tion to the mo­tor neu­rons in the spinal cord, cre­at­ing the re­ac­tion of mov­ing the leg quickly, for in­stance,” ex­plains Leti­cia. In the brain, this in­for­ma­tion will reach the pain sen­sa­tion area, be an­a­lysed and a more de­vel­oped re­sponse will be gen­er­ated (such as mov­ing the leg out of the way or kick­ing in defence). This will be sent to the mo­tor neu­rons of the spinal cord’s grey mat­ter. This com­mand will then exit the spinal cord through the cor­re­spon­dent spinal nerve, down smaller nerves un­til it reaches the nec­es­sary mus­cles needed to do the job. All of this hap­pens in a split sec­ond.

Some­thing as sim­ple as a fly b ite w ill s park a c hain rea ction JAN­UARY 2019

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