About this Research Topic
Invertebrate models have played key roles in neuroscience throughout the history of the field.
The first work that revealed the cellular components of the brain by Ramón y Cajal in 1909, the discoveries of Hodgkin and Huxley in 1939 on the basis of the electrical conduction in the axon, and the molecular basis of learning and memory by Kandel and colleagues in 2006 had in common the innovative use of invertebrate species.
Several classical invertebrate model systems, like flies and worms, continue to allow new research breakthroughs in multiple areas of neuroscience. Alongside these species, other invertebrates, including honeybees and moths, are currently being used to investigate ecological and evolutionary principles of neuroscience in natural environments.
This Research Topic aims to center on the paradigms used to study neural, genetic and molecular basis of behavior using invertebrates. The breadth of approaches allows a range of contributions, including:
• detailed information about the circuits and genes required to precisely modulate very simple behaviors;
• insights about the role of neuroglia in metabolism and neural activity;
• the molecular basis of synaptic plasticity and its modulation by biogenic amines in order to generate learning;
• the ways organisms perceive signals in a complex environment and execute a specific, goal-directed behavioral response.
Invertebrate brains, though typically small and composed of different anatomical structures than vertebrates, nonetheless regulate a wide range of simple and complex plastic behaviors. Thus, invertebrate studies provide a framework to understand general aspects of behavioral neuroscience, as well as opportunities to expand our understanding of the rules governing sophisticated neural processing.
Keywords: Invertebrates, behavior, neuroscience, model, learning, memory
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