Intracellular recordings of miniature end‐plate potentials were performed in extensor digitorum longus muscles from guinea pigs with experimental immune‐mediated motoneuron destruction. In the early stages of the disease, the miniature end‐plate potential frequency was elevated compared to that in control and normal animals. The amplitude and time course of the miniature end‐plate potentials as well as the resting potential of the muscle fibers were not altered, which implies integrity of the postjunctional membrane. The increase in frequency of miniature end‐plate potential reflects an increase of basal acetylcholine release and documents dysfunction of the presynaptic terminal of the neuromuscular junction. The increased frequency was associated with high levels of antimotoneuronal IgG in the blood and the presence of IgG at motor end‐plates. These data suggest that the presynaptic terminal of the neuromuscular junction may be involved in the immune attack in animal models of motoneuron degeneration.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology