Paul Benjamin

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Intracellular recordings were made from rhythm-generating interneurons in the Lymnaea feeding system. The feeding pattern is a three-phase rhythm of interneuronal activity (N1, N2, N3) corresponding to protraction, rasp, and swallow. We describe the firing pattern and anatomy of the premotor interneurons, each of which fires a predominant burst in only one(More)
We show that appetitive and aversive conditioning can be analyzed at the cellular level in the well-described neural circuitries underlying rhythmic feeding and respiration in the pond snail, Lymnaea stagnalis. To relate electrical changes directly to behavior, the snails were first trained and the neural changes recorded at multiple sites in reduced(More)
The role of motoneurons in central motor pattern generation was investigated in the feeding system of the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis, an important invertebrate model of behavioral rhythm generation. The neuronal network responsible for the three-phase feeding motor program (fictive feeding) has been characterized extensively and divided into populations(More)
The distribution of serotonin and serotonin-containing neurons was studied in the ganglia of the CNS of the snail Lymnaea stagnalis. Results of the application of three different labelling techniques on wholemount preparations were compared with each other and with the serotonin content of the ganglia, measured by high-performance liquid chromatography.(More)
BACKGROUND It is now well established that persistent nonsynaptic neuronal plasticity occurs after learning and, like synaptic plasticity, it can be the substrate for long-term memory. What still remains unclear, though, is how nonsynaptic plasticity contributes to the altered neural network properties on which memory depends. Understanding how nonsynaptic(More)
The nitric oxide (NO)-cGMP signaling pathway is implicated in an increasing number of experimental models of plasticity. Here, in a behavioral analysis using one-trial appetitive associative conditioning, we show that there is an obligatory requirement for this pathway in the formation of long-term memory (LTM). Moreover, we demonstrate that this(More)
Modulatory interneurons that can drive central pattern generators (CPGs) are considered as good candidates for decision-making roles in rhythmic behaviors. Although the mechanisms by which such neurons activate their target CPGs are known in detail in many systems, their role in the sensory activation of CPG-driven behaviors is poorly understood. In the(More)
Nitric oxide (NO) and serotonin (5-HT) are two neurotransmitters with important roles in neuromodulation and synaptic plasticity. There is substantial evidence for a morphological and functional overlap between these two neurotransmitter systems, in particular the modulation of 5-HT function by NO. Here we demonstrate for the first time the modulation of an(More)
We have identified a TTX-resistant low-threshold persistent inward sodium current in the cerebral giant cells (CGCs) of Lymnaea, an important state-setting modulatory cell type of molluscan feeding networks. This current has slow voltage-dependent activation and de-activation kinetics, ultra-slow inactivation kinetics and fast de-inactivation kinetics. It(More)
Systems level studies have shown that the paired serotonergic cerebral giant cells (CGCs) of gastropod mollusks have important extrinsic modulatory actions on the central pattern generator (CPG) underlying rhythmic ingestion movements. Here we present the first study that investigates the modulatory actions of the CGCs and their released transmitter 5-HT on(More)