Peripheral input WAS Re: micro mods to neurons
c.hull at ento.uq.edu.au
Sun Oct 13 18:39:13 EST 1996
COLLEEN M. SPECHT wrote:
> p.s. there is much indirect evidence for "changes" in the nervous system in
> response to learning or situations where learning has taken place. and i would
> make a "theoretical" argument for peripheral memories (which have also not been
> found) based on learned motor tasks. briefly, you cannot master a piano with
> just a brain (i.e. central nervous system). the connections between your
> motoneurons (to muscle tissue) are also plastic and this is probably, in part,
> how we 'learn' fine motor tasks. And i am sure that it would not
> be any more independent of the cns than the cns is of the periphery. they are
> not separate entities any more than the esophogus is of the stomach. they just
> act differently, like the latter do, although they have a common goal.
> we have to remember, the distinction between cns and pns is a man made one,
> even though they have many differences between them.
> we also have to remember that memories are not necessarily conscious. you
> remember how to ride a bike, but you are not aware of all of the processes that
> take place while you ride (i.e. when you are exhibiting that memory).
> hope this helps!
Thanks for the replies.
Following on from the discussion of the nature of the central nervous
physiology, I'd like to enquire more about the nature of the
peripheral input. (I should point out that I am conducting research on
insect sensory systems, so have not been exposed to much work on
vertebrate systems). Never the less, an interesting paper has recently
been published that makes certain postulates on the nature of the
peripheral sensory input. It relates to feeding, but has other
applications. Part of the model suggests (with some experimental
evidence to back it up) that it is the total number of nerve impulses
from a number of sensory cells that are required to form the input
pattern of the "acceptable diet", ie across-fibre patterning. The
important point is that depending on the quality of the previous diet,
the firing patterns of the various sensory cells will change such that
the behavioural feeding response is modified to take in deficient
nutrients, but the total number of impulses for all the sensory cells
would be roughly the same.
Any comments? Has there been much experimentation of this area in
vertebrate systems, or are entomologists leading the way again?
Ref: Simpson S. J. and D. Raubenheimer. 1996. Feeding behaviour,
sensory physiology and nutrient feedback: a unifying model.
Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata 80: 55-64.
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