Open access peer-reviewed Edited Volume


José A. Vega

University of Oviedo

Leading researcher and head of the SINPOS research group (Sensory Organs and Peripheral Nervous System), and full professor of neuroanatomy and human embryology at the University of Oviedo. He is co-author of more than 100 publications on the peripheral nervous system.


Juan Cobo

University of Oviedo

Member of the SINPOS research group (Sensory Organs and Peripheral Nervous System), and full professor of Stomatology at the University of Oviedo. He co-authored more than 50 publications on the peripheral nervous system especially in the field of facial proprioception.


Muscle Proprioception Articular Proprioception Sensory Receptors Cephalic Proprioception Primary Sensory Neurons Spinal Cord Cerebellum Brain Proprioception Impairment Mechanosensitivity Mechano-Gated Ion Channels Mechanotransduction

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About the book

The proprioception, or sense of proprioception, is a quality of the somatosensibility that can be defined as the perception of body and limb position with respect to the space, or of each segment of the body with respect to the body itself. Thus, it is the sense of positioning and movement. Proprioception plays a key role in the interactions with environment since it helps the planning and performance of movements.
The sense of proprioception includes various aspects or submodalities such as position sense, motion sense (kinaesthesia; including the duration, direction, amplitude, speed, acceleration and timing of movements), force tension sense, and change in velocity sense.

Proprioception is mediated by proprioceptors, a specialized subset of about 10-15% of mechanosensory neurons localized in dorsal root ganglia that convey information about the stretch and tension of muscles, tendons, joints and perhaps the skin. So, the neurological basis of proprioception originates from proprioceptors with contact specialized sensory organs in muscles (muscle spindles), tendons (Golgi tendon organs), joints (different morphotypes of sensory corpuscles including Ruffini’s corpuscles and Pacinian corpuscles) and the skin (cutaneous mechanoreceptors). Thereafter, the information originated in the proprioceptors forming complex nerve pathways reach the central nervous system at the level of the spinal cord, the cerebellum and the cerebral cortex for processing. Hence, proprioception can be regarded as a continuous loop of feedforward and feedback inputs between sensory receptors throughout the body and the nervous system.

In limb and axial muscles, the proprioception originates in the muscle spindles. Nevertheless, the cephalic muscles, with the exception of the extraocular muscles and those innervated by the mandibular branch of the trigeminal nerve, lack muscle spindles. But the facial or pharyngeal proprioception plays key roles in the regulation and coordination of facial musculature and diverse reflexes. At the basis of these functional characteristics are the multiple communications between cranial nerves. Substituting muscle spindles by other kinds of proprioceptors might be at the basis.
On the other hand, since the stimuli for proprioceptors are mechanical (stretch, tension, and so) proprioception can be regarded as a modality of mechanosensitivity. During the last decade progress has been made to understanding the molecular basis of mechanosensitivity. However, identity of mechanotransducers is poorly know. The mechanogated ion channels acid-sensing ion channel 2 (ASIC2), transient receptor potential vanilloid 4 (TRPV4) and PIEZO2 have been related to mechanotransduction and have been detected in proprioceptors innervating muscle spindles and Golgi tendon organs in mice. Also, mice lacking Piezo2 showed severely uncoordinated body movements and abnormal limb positions.
Finally, the lesion of the proprioception receptors, proprioceptors or the nerve center and pathways related to proprioception result in poor proprioception. Importantly, age-related changes also affect proprioception due to a combination of natural age-related changes to the central nervous system, nerves, joints, and muscles. Acute and long-term impairment can be related to toxicological, medical or injury conditions, but also with neuromuscular and central nervous system diseases.

Based on the above comments this book intends to provide a comprehensive update an overview of the anatomical, structural and molecular basis of proprioception as well as of the main causes of proprioception impairment and possible treatments.

Publishing process

Book initiated and editor appointed

Date completed: September 8th 2020

Applications to edit the book are assessed and a suitable editor is selected, at which point the process begins.

Chapter proposals submitted and reviewed

Deadline for chapter proposals: October 6th 2020

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Deadline for full chapters: December 5th 2020

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Full chapters peer reviewed

Review results due: February 23rd 2021

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Expected publication date: April 24th 2021

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About the editor

José A. Vega

University of Oviedo

Dr. José Antonio A. Vega is a graduate in Medicine and Surgery that obtained PhD (with Extraordinary Prize) from the University of Oviedo, Spain. He completed his postdoctoral training at the universities of Brno and Prague (Czech Republic), 'La Sapienza' and 'Tor Vergata' in Rome specializing in peripheral nervous system and growth factors of the neurotrophin family. Currently he is a Professor of Anatomy and Human Embryology of the Department of Morphology and Cell Biology at the University of Oviedo, and Head of the research group SINPOS (Sensory Organs and Peripheral Nervous System) at the University of Oviedo. He has taught as a contracted professor, at the Universities of Messina, 'Federico II' of Naples, Rome 'La Sapienza' and Rome 'Tor Vergata', Sassari, Barí, and CEU-San Pablo at Madrid. He co-authored more than 350 JCR articles and 50 chapters in books mainly related to peripheral nervous system, neurotrophins and aging, and supervised 54 doctoral theses.

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Book chapters authored 6

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