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Observations On the Oesophageal Nerve System of Longidorus Leptocephalus

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image of Nematologica
For more content, see Nematology.

The plant parasitic nematode Longidorus leptocephalus Hooper has three main nerves linking the odontophore with the basal bulb and from these arise branches. Some of these in the odontophore region pass forward (five) or backward (one) through the pseudocoelom linking with the somatic nervous system; branches in the other oesophageal regions pass in towards the food canal and lie closely apposed to its cuticular lining. These latter have finely divided tips which are closely associated with lamellae in the cuticular wall of the food canal, and these nerves are thought to be chemoreceptors and/or mechanoreceptors. One of these receptor regions is in the anterior slender oesophagus and three are in the basal bulb, the latter receptors associated with the oesophageal gland duct orifices. Four more small branches from the main nerves are associated with the odontostyle protractor muscles near the tip of the head and are also thought to be mechanoreceptors possibly maintaining hydrostatic equilibrium, and thus conformation, in this anterior region. In addition there are three regions thought to contain proprioreceptors, one at the base of the odontophore, one at the isthmus of the slender oesophagus and one around the oesophagointestinal valve.

Affiliations: 1: Scottish Horticultural Research Institute, Invergowrie, Dundee, DD2 5DA, Scotland, U.K.


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