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Neural circuits controlling behavior and autonomic functions in medicinal leeches

Author(s): Lamb Damon G | Calabrese Ronald L

Journal: Neural Systems & Circuits
ISSN 2042-1001

Volume: 1;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 13;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: central pattern generation | behavioral decision | Hirudo sp. | swimming | crawling | heartbeat | neuronal circuits

Abstract In the study of the neural circuits underlying behavior and autonomic functions, the stereotyped and accessible nervous system of medicinal leeches, Hirudo sp., has been particularly informative. These leeches express well-defined behaviors and autonomic movements which are amenable to investigation at the circuit and neuronal levels. In this review, we discuss some of the best understood of these movements and the circuits which underlie them, focusing on swimming, crawling and heartbeat. We also discuss the rudiments of decision-making: the selection between generally mutually exclusive behaviors at the neuronal level.
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Tango Jona
Tangokurs Rapperswil-Jona