A small-systems approach to motor pattern generation

Nature. 2002 May 16;417(6886):343-50. doi: 10.1038/417343a.


How neuronal networks enable animals, humans included, to make coordinated movements is a continuing goal of neuroscience research. The stomatogastric nervous system of decapod crustaceans, which contains a set of distinct but interacting motor circuits, has contributed significantly to the general principles guiding our present understanding of how rhythmic motor circuits operate at the cellular level. This results from a detailed documentation of the circuit dynamics underlying motor pattern generation in this system as well as its modulation by individual transmitters and neurons.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Crustacea / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Membrane Potentials
  • Models, Animal
  • Nerve Net*
  • Nervous System Physiological Phenomena*
  • Neuronal Plasticity
  • Neurons / cytology
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Synapses / physiology
  • Synaptic Transmission