Workshop on the neurobiology of animal locomotion
We have organized a satellite workshop with two talks from researchers participating in AMAM2023. We look forward to your participation.
- Date: June 5, 2023 (Mon) 15:10-16:40
- Venue：C509, Faculty & Graduate School of Science - C, Rokkodai Campus of Kobe University (Please note that this venue is different from the venue of AMAM 2023.)
Multiple locomotion gaits in insects
Prof. Amir Ayali (School of Zoology, Tel Aviv University)
Mole crickets are underground insects and one of the few insects with digging legs. The large claws on the ends of their feet allow them to live a peculiar underground life. They also have other characteristics, such as a cylindrical hardened body and a pointed head, that they have evolved to live in underground tunnels and burrows. They are well-known pests of grassland and seedling crops and lawns, but their underground behavior is of particular interest in locomotion and locomotion studies. Their ground locomotion is efficient, and their subterranean locomotion shows very fast advances and retreats. However, little information is available about the locomotion of this unique insect. Of particular interest is the question of how leg deformation aids in different types of locomotion and what role the digging leg plays in locomotion and especially in backward locomotion. Prof. Ayali and his colleague obtained a comparative description of the kinematics of forward and backward walking in adult mole crickets using a custom-built transparent track setup, high-speed video monitoring, and cutting-edge offline machine learning-based analysis tools. They are currently complementing our video analysis with simultaneous electrophysiological recordings from the leg muscles during locomotion to provide a complete picture of the different locomotion gaits of this unique insect.
Sensory feedback control in elongate swimming fishes
Prof. Emily M Standen (Biology Department, University of Ottawa)
Locomotion is influenced by brain control, sensory feedback, and environmental restrictions. Long-bodied animals offer valuable insights into the interaction between control processes, environmental links, and locomotion. Sensory feedback informs the brain, leading to behavioral and cognitive control responses. Additionally, it can impact local neuron groups and modify central pattern generation independently of the brain, altering movement output. The mechanical environment both stimulates sensory feedback and limits muscle contraction. Understanding how brain instructions, sensory feedback, and mechanical constraints work together to control movement is challenging. By studying long-living fish and manipulating their environmental perception and abilities, Prof. Standen and her colleague have isolated the roles of the brain and sensory feedback, gaining a deeper understanding of locomotion control complexity. Their research reveals that sensory feedback and mechanical connections can enable locomotion even without explicit brain instructions, providing redundancy and adaptability to unpredictable environmental conditions.
Hitoshi Aonuma (aon [at] sapphire.kobe-u.ac.jp, Please replace [at] with @)