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The effects of unilateral transection of the Achilles tendon (tenotomy) on the electromyographic characteristics of the gastrocnemius muscle on the contralateral side were studied in rats. Motor responses, reflex responses, and motor unit spike activity in the contralateral gastrocnemius muscle were studied in baseline conditions and on afferent stimulation before and 10 days after tenotomy. Changes in the nature of motor unit spike activity and responses to afferent stimulation were observed. The results obtained here demonstrate increases in the excitability of individual motoneurons in the contralateral motor center of the gastrocnemius muscle after exclusion of the symmetrical gastrocnemius muscle from the overall pattern of movement activity.