Bilateral Symmetry and Interneuronal Organization in the Buccal Ganglia of Aplysia

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Science  06 Aug 1971:
Vol. 173, Issue 3996, pp. 550-553
DOI: 10.1126/science.173.3996.550


Principles of functional organization of the bilaterally symmetric buccal ganglia of Aplysia were studied in 20 identified cells used as a reference population. Four of the identified cells (two in each ganglion) are multiaction interneurons, each of which innervates six identified ipsilateral follower cells, mediating cholinergic excitation to one cell and cholinergic inhibition to five others. Bilateral coordination is effected by common inputs to all four interneurons. Ipsilateral pairs of interneurons are electrotonically coupled and produce identical synaptic actions on their common follower population. This apparent redundancy of interneuronal action leads to feed-forward summation, eliciting amplified synaptic output from each interneuron pair.

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