Amine modulation of electrical coupling in the pyloric network of the lobster stomatogastric ganglion

J Comp Physiol A. 1993;172(6):715-32. doi: 10.1007/BF00195397.


1. The neurons of the pyloric network of the lobster (Panulirus interruptus) stomatogastric ganglion organize their rhythmic motor output using both chemical and electrical synapses. The 6 electrical synapses within this network help set the firing phases of the pyloric neurons during each rhythmic cycle. We examined the modulatory effects of the amines dopamine (DA), serotonin (5HT) and octopamine (Oct) on coupling at all the electrical synapses of the pyloric network. 2. Electrical coupling within the pacemaker group [anterior burster (AB) to pyloric dilator (PD), and PD-PD] was non-rectifying, while coupling at the other electrical synapses [AB to ventral dilator (VD), PD-VD, lateral pyloric (LP) to pyloric (PY), and PY-PY] was rectifying. 3. Dopamine decreased or increased the coupling strength of all the pyloric electrical synapses: the sign of the effect depended upon which neuron was the target of current injection. For example, DA decreased AB-->PD coupling (i.e., when current was injected into the AB) but increased coupling in the other direction, PD-->AB. Dopamine decreased AB to VD coupling when current was injected into either neuron. Serotonin also had mixed effects; it enhanced PD-->AB coupling but decreased AB to VD and PD to VD coupling in both directions. Octopamine's only effect was to reduce PD-->VD coupling. 4. Dopamine increased the input resistance of the AB neuron but decreased the input resistance of the PD and VD neurons. Serotonin reduced the input resistance of the VD and PY neurons, while Oct did not significantly change the input resistance of any pyloric neuron. 5. The characteristic modulation of electrical coupling by each amine may contribute to the unique motor pattern that DA, 5HT and Oct each elicit from the pyloric motor network.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Amines / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Electric Conductivity
  • Electrophysiology
  • Ganglia / physiology*
  • Neural Pathways / cytology
  • Neural Pathways / physiology
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Pylorus / innervation*
  • Synapses / physiology


  • Amines