Matthias Gruhn

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Stick insect (Carausius morosus) leg muscles contract and relax slowly. Control of stick insect leg posture and movement could therefore differ from that in animals with faster muscles. Consistent with this possibility, stick insect legs maintained constant posture without leg motor nerve activity when the animals were rotated in air. That unloaded leg(More)
The coordination of the movement of single and multiple limbs is essential for the generation of locomotion. Movement about single joints and the resulting stepping patterns are usually generated by the activity of antagonistic muscle pairs. In the stick insect, the three major muscle pairs of a leg are the protractor and retractor coxae, the levator and(More)
In stick insects, walking is the result of the co-action of different pattern generators for the single legs and coordinating inter-leg influences. We have used a slippery surface setup to understand the role the local neuronal processing in the thoracic ganglia plays in the ability of the animal to show turning movements. To achieve this, we removed the(More)
Understanding how animals control locomotion in different behaviors requires understanding both the kinematics of leg movements and the neural activity underlying these movements. Stick insect leg kinematics differ in forward and backward walking. Describing leg muscle activity in these behaviors is a first step toward understanding the neuronal basis for(More)
Legged locomotion requires that information local to one leg, and inter-segmental signals coming from the other legs are processed appropriately to establish a coordinated walking pattern. However, very little is known about the relative importance of local and inter-segmental signals when they converge upon the central pattern generators (CPGs) of(More)
In insects, histamine is found both in the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and in the CNS and is known to function as a fast neurotransmitter in photoreceptors that have been shown to express selectively the hdc gene. This gene codes for histidine decarboxylase (HDC), the enzyme for histamine synthesis. Fast neurotransmission requires the efficient removal(More)
A modified and improved setup based on Epstein and Graham [Epstein S, Graham D. Behaviour and motor output of stick insects walking on a slippery surface. I. Forward walking. J Exp Biol 1983;105: 215-29] to study straight and curve walking in the stick insect was developed and applications for its use are described. The animal is fixed on a balsa stick and(More)
Delayed rectifier potassium currents [I(K(V))] generate sustained, noninactivating outward currents with characteristic fast rates of activation and deactivation and play important roles in shaping spike frequency. The pyloric motor network in the stomatogastric ganglion of the spiny lobster, Panulirus interruptus, is made up of one interneuron and 13 motor(More)
We performed electrophysiological and behavioral experiments in single-leg preparations and intact animals of the stick insect Carausius morosus to understand mechanisms underlying the control of walking speed. At the level of the single leg, we found no significant correlation between stepping velocity and spike frequency of motor neurons (MNs) other than(More)
A chronically implantable electrode design permitting alternate extracellular nerve recording and axon stimulation in freely behaving crayfish was developed. The electrode consists of a double hook made from 20 microm thin platinum wire that can be fitted to various nerve diameters, and is easily implantable. A fast curing, flexible two-component silicone(More)