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Behavioural and network plasticity following conditioning of the aerial respiratory response of a pulmonate mollusc 1

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Most molluscs perform respiration using gills, but the pulmonate molluscs have developed a primitive lung with which they perform pulmonary respiration. The flow of air into this lung occurs through an opening called the pneumostome, and pulmonate molluscs travel to the surface of the water to obtain oxygen from the surrounding atmosphere. The aerial respiratory behaviour of the pulmonate mollusc, the great pond snail (Lymnaea stagnalis (L., 1758)), has been well studied, and a three-neuron central pattern generator (CPG) controlling this rhythmic behaviour has been identified. The aerial respiratory behaviour of L. stagnalis can be operantly conditioned and plasticity within the CPG has been associated with the conditioned response. In this review, we describe both the aerial respiratory behaviour and the underlying neuronal network of this pulmonate mollusc, and then discuss both the behavioural and network plasticity that results from the conditioning of this behaviour.

Keywords: Lymnaea stagnalis; aerial respiration; central pattern generator; conditionnement opérant; grande lymnée des étangs; great pond snail; générateur central de patrons; neural plasticity; operant conditioning; plasticité neuronale; respiration aérienne

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2013-01-01

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  • Published since 1929, this monthly journal reports on primary research contributed by respected international scientists in the broad field of zoology, including behaviour, biochemistry and physiology, developmental biology, ecology, genetics, morphology and ultrastructure, parasitology and pathology, and systematics and evolution. It also invites experts to submit review articles on topics of current interest.
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