Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/5/2006
Publication Date: 5/4/2006
Citation: Robinson, A.F., Perry, R. 2006. Behaviour and sensory perception. In: Perry, R.N., Moens, M., editors. Plant Nematology. Wallingsford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom: CAB International. p. 210-233.
Technical Abstract: In this chapter behaviour is narrowly defined as neuromuscularly controlled movements of the nematode body or its parts that result in: 1) travel or rotation of the nematode through space (locomotion), 2) events of physiological or developmental importance (hatching, feeding, copulation, egg laying, defecation, root penetration), and 3) postures or integrated movements of groups of nematodes (coiling, clumping swarming and nictating) enhancing survival and phoresis. In order to perform these behaviours, nematodes need to assimilate information from their external environment via sense organs or sensilla that are of two basic types: internal and cuticular. Internal sensilla are mechanoreceptors or, less frequently, photoreceptors, whereas the cuticular sensilla detect a much greater range of stimuli, including chemical, mechanical, temperature and osmotic pressure. The fundamental structure of a sensillum comprises three basic cell types: a glandular sheath cell, which is deeply folded with a very large surface area, a supporting socket cell, surrounding the duct that encloses the distal regions of the receptors, and a number of bipolar neurons, or dendritic processes, which are bathed in secretions. The main concentration of cuticular sensilla is on the head of the nematode, consisting of a hexaradiate pattern comprising six lips containing twelve labial sensilla, four cephalic sensilla and two amphids. These are arranged in three circles consisting of an outer circle of four cephalic sensilla, a middle circle of six outer labial sensilla and an inner circle of six inner labial sensilla.