intestinal segments. The units are well coordinated functionally and linked probably with the entericnervoussystem. The organized migration along the bowel of each normal MMC cycle, with remarkable regularity, must be steered by fine control mechanisms
In order to explore the functions of the peripheral neurons in the enteric nervous system (ENS) of the gastropods,
, we investigated the correlation between peripheral neuronal activities and movements of the digestive tract. In
, movements of the gizzard were distinguished into two types of contraction: a large constriction of the whole gizzard following bursting activities of the neurons on the gizzard and EJP-like potentials in the musculature; and a small contraction of a restricted part of the gizzard following a slow muscle potential. When TTX was applied to isolated gizzard preparation, the bursting activities were blocked and the EJP-like potentials and the subsequent constriction disappeared, whereas the slow potentials in the musculature and partial contractions appeared to be unaffected. Therefore, it was suggested that the peripheral neurons on the gizzard were motor neurons for constriction, while the partial contraction was thought to be myogenic. In
, we recorded periodic bursting activities in the enteric nervous system that were followed by EJP-like potentials and gastrointestinal movements. The results show that, in both species, there may exist motor neurons in the ENS that are responsible for neurogenic movements of the digestive tract.