Distribution and specific central projections of mechanoreceptors in the thorax and proximal leg joints of locusts. II. The external mechanoreceptors: hair plates and tactile hairs

Cell Tissue Res. 1981;216(1):79-96. doi: 10.1007/BF00234546.


Tactile hairs on the locust thorax can be divided into two classes by their external morphology and their central projection pattern: Short hairs, 10--100 micrometer in length, which are assembled in distinct plates and rows, and long hairs, 100--800 micrometer in length, which are distributed all over the body and are organized in large fields or aligned along the ridges of the appendages. The sensory fibers of the first class arborize in the lateral dorsal neuropile of thoracic ganglia and then extend further into the ipsilateral half of the corresponding ganglion in three main bundles from which fine rami of fibers end in the intermediate neuropile. In all three thoracic ganglia the projection pattern of homologous hair plates is similar. The sensory fibers of the second class exclusively terminate in special median ventral neuropiles, the ventral association center (VAC) and ventralmost ventral association center (VVAC). In addition fibers from meso- and metathoracic hairs, located close to the longitudinal midline of the animal, may terminate in the contralateral VAC and with one branch project to the next anterior ganglion through the ipsilateral connective. In contrast, fibers from prothoracic hairs were not found to leave their ganglion.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Extremities
  • Grasshoppers / anatomy & histology*
  • Hair / innervation
  • Joints / innervation
  • Mechanoreceptors / cytology*
  • Neural Pathways / cytology
  • Thorax