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J Embryol Exp Morphol. 1981 Feb;61:317-30.

Embryogenesis of an insect nervous system II: a second class of neuron precursor cells and the origin of the intersegmental connectives.


The intersegmental connectives in the locust central nervous system are initiated by the axons of early differentiating neuron trios. Using a combination of electron microscopy and fluorescent dye injection we have shown that the axons of these cells grow out anteriorly and posteriorly in each segment along a basement membrane, and link together at the segment borders to form continuous longitudinal pathways on each side of the developing nervous system. These early neurons are the progeny of a second class of precursor cell, the midline precursors, which are distinct from the segmental neuroblasts. Like the neuroblasts, the midline precursors are arranged in a standard segmentally repeated pattern. This and the standard pattern of axon outgrowth in different segments suggest that the nervous system develops to a common, segmentally repeated programme.

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