Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

How crayfish do the locomotion

27.11.2002


Using computer models and experiments, researchers at the University of California, Davis, have identified the neurons and connections that are necessary for crayfish to swim.

"We can now pin down the essential components of the circuit," said Brian Mulloney, a professor of neurobiology, physiology and behavior at UC Davis.

The nervous system controlling locomotion is highly tuned and very stable across different groups of animals, Mulloney said. That makes crayfish a good model for much more complex nervous systems such as the human spinal cord.



New advances in the field were discussed in a session chaired by Mulloney at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in November 2002.

Crayfish swim by beating pairs of paddles called swimmerets on each body segment. The swimmerets move in sequence, starting at the back of the animal and moving forward. The movements of each segment keep a precise difference in timing, while varying in speed and force.

To keep those movements in the right sequence, the animal’s nervous system has to integrate signals from each of these different segments as well as signals from the brain.

Mulloney’s group, working with mathematicians Stephanie Jones at Harvard University and Frances Skinner at the University of Toronto, built mathematical models of the crayfish nervous system to see how they might work. They used those models to design experiments where they recorded impulses in crayfish nerves.

They showed that the swimmeret system is made up of eight modules of 70 neurons each. They found which neurons are necessary to complete the circuit, and what cells they connect to.

As the swimmerets beat, each module receives a stream of nerve impulses from the modules behind and in front of it. Signals from behind indicate a power stroke; those from the front represent a recovery stroke. Mulloney’s team has found that those different messages converge on the same target neuron, which integrates them into a graded, non-spiking signal. This combined signal tells the module when to release neurotransmitters -- chemicals which change the timing and force of limb movement.

The same basic plan is likely found in insects and other animals, Mulloney said.


###
Media contacts: Brian Mulloney, Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, (530) 752-1110, bcmulloney@ucdavis.edu


Andy Fell | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ucdavis.edu/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells
22.08.2017 | National University Health System

nachricht Biochemical 'fingerprints' reveal diabetes progression
22.08.2017 | Umea University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>