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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2017 Apr;43:110-118. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2017.01.005. Epub 2017 Mar 6.

Multisensory integration in C. elegans.

Author information

1
Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, United States.
2
Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Yale University, New Haven, CT, United States; Department of Genetics, Yale University, New Haven, CT, United States; Kavli Institute for Neuroscience, Yale University, New Haven, CT, United States. Electronic address: michael.nitabach@yale.edu.
3
Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Center for Brain Science, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, United States. Electronic address: yzhang@oeb.harvard.edu.
4
Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Center for Brain Science, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, United States.

Abstract

Multisensory integration is a neural process by which signals from two or more distinct sensory channels are simultaneously processed to form a more coherent representation of the environment. Multisensory integration, especially when combined with a survey of internal states, provides selective advantages for animals navigating complex environments. Despite appreciation of the importance of multisensory integration in behavior, the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms remain poorly understood. Recent work looking at how Caenorhabditis elegans makes multisensory decisions has yielded mechanistic insights into how a relatively simple and well-defined nervous system employs circuit motifs of defined features, synaptic signals and extrasynaptic neurotransmission, as well as neuromodulators in processing and integrating multiple sensory inputs to generate flexible and adaptive behavioral outputs.

PMID:
28273525
PMCID:
PMC5501174
[Available on 2018-04-01]
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2017.01.005
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