A Caltech Library Service

Integration of visual stimuli by the crayfish central nervous system

Wiersma, C. A. G. and Yamaguchi, T. (1967) Integration of visual stimuli by the crayfish central nervous system. Journal of Experimental Biology, 47 (3). pp. 409-431. ISSN 0022-0949.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


For the crayfish, properties of visually reacting interneurone types in the optic nerve are described on the basis of single-unit analysis. Sustaining fibres show: (a) ‘surround’ inhibition over the whole retina, including the excitatory field; (b) ‘on’ and ‘off’ effects at field boundaries; (c) a dark discharge in deteriorated preparations; (d) an increase in adapted firing rate and response to flashes in an ‘excited state’ of the preparation; (e) increased overall impulse frequency to fast-moving shadows at frequencies of 2-10/sec. which elicit short bursts. Dimming fibres, having mainly reversed properties, show: (a) bursts followed by adaptation to a lower ferquency level of spikes on light dimming; (b) total inhibition by illumination for times proportional to light intensity; (c) responsiveness to quickly moving shadows. 'Jittery’ movement fibres lack directional sensitivity. For them: (a) total illumination and contrast have, within a wide range, no effect on discharges to moving targets; (b) large, dark cards moved at constant speed are seen only near their visual field boundary; (c) the less predictable the movement of a small dark object is, the longer its excitatory effect lasts; (d) responsiveness of field parts exposed is decreased for long durations; (e) no firing is caused by active or passive eye motions. Space-constant fibres show changed location and size of their excitatory fields with eye position. Their potential visual fields below the horizontal plane are unresponsive, due to inhibition caused mainly by statocyst input. Two eye muscle motor fibres, also under statocyst control, are influenced by light on the limited sensory fields of two pairs of identifiable sustaining fibres. The two motor fibres, which innervate antagonistic muscles, are reversely excited and inhibited by these fields.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Additional Information:© 1967 The Company of Biologists Ltd. Received June 19, 1967. This work has been supported by Grant NB-03627 from the National Institutes of Health, Public Health Service.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIH Public Health ServiceNB-03627
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20120905-111950417
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:C. A. G. WIERSMA and T. YAMAGUCHI Integration of Visual Stimuli by the Crayfish Central Nervous System J Exp Biol 1967 47:409-431.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:33861
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:05 Sep 2012 21:18
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 04:13

Repository Staff Only: item control page