We combine electrophysiological and immunocytochemical analyses in the snail Lymnaea stagnalis of M-CCAP1 and M-CCAP2, two molluscan peptides with structure similar to crustacean cardioactive peptide CCAP, originally isolated from the snail Helix pomatia. Both M-CCAP peptides (M-CCAP1 and M-CCAP2, 1 μM) had an excitatory effect, depolarizing all the identified neurons of the buccal feeding network (including motoneurons: B1, B2, B4 and modulatory interneurons SO, OC: 62 neurons in 33 preparations). Additionally, in 67% of preparations, rhythmic activity (fictive feeding) was recorded with a mean rate of 7 cycles/min. No significant difference in the proportion of preparations showing fictive feeding or mean feeding rate was found between M-CCAP1 and M-CCAP2. The extrinsic feeding modulator, the serotonergic CGC neuron, responds by increase of the spontaneous activity after M-CCAP application (9 of 18 preparations). Crustacean CCAP (1 μM) evokes a slight membrane depolarization in 3 out of 8 preparations but never evokes fictive feeding. Immunostaining revealed no cell bodies in the buccal ganglia, but a dense network of CCAP immunopositive fibers arborizing in the buccal neuropil. Many of these fibers originate from a symmetrical pair of CCAP-immunoreactive cerebro-buccal interneurons, which are the most likely candidates for extrinsic modulatory interneurons in the buccal feeding network. Our data are the first results suggesting that M-CCAP-peptides exist as effective modulators in mollusc.
- Central pattern generator
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