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Maturation of an insect nervous system: constancy in the face of change


, : Maturation of an insect nervous system: constancy in the face of change. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Physiology 109(1): 23-32

Growth and refinement of nervous system function occurs during postembryonic development in both invertebrates and vertebrates. Here we focus on one example, the cercal sensory system of orthopteran insects. Comparative studies on the different cercal systems have demonstrated that maturation in insects is a dynamic process during which extensive morphological and functional changes of the peripheral nervous system are matched to the CNS. The cerci are paired abdominal appendages that are covered with hair sensilla. During the molting cycles, the sensilla grow in size and gradually modify their transduction properties. In addition, new sensilla are formed and their synapses intercalate into the already functioning neuronal circuits in the terminal abdominal ganglion. In spite of the peripheral changes, the response properties of the first-order interneurons remain constant, as do the behaviors controlled by this circuit. The accommodation of the changes is based primarily on a continual rearrangement of the synaptic circuitry.

US$19.90

DOI: 10.1016/0300-9629(94)90308-5


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