Hexamethonium sensitivity of the swim musculature of the pteropod mollusc,Clione limacina

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Abstract

Swimming in reduced electrophysiological preparations of the pteropod mollusc, Clione limacina, was blocked by bath application of hexamethonium even though pattern generator activity continued with this treatment. Neuromuscular recordings indicated that hexamethonium blocked synaptic input from Pd-3 and Pd-4 motoneurons to slow-twitch muscle cells, while connections from Pd-1A and Pd-2A motoneurons to fast-twitch muscle cells were variable in their response to hexamethonium—synaptic inputs were suppressed in most cases and occasionally blocked, but the latter only with high concentrations and long incubations. Acutely dissociated wing muscle cells showed a concentration-dependency in the percentage of contracted cells with bath application of acetylcholine, and this contractile activity was blocked in preparations that were first bathed in hexamethonium. Intracellular recordings from dissociated slow-twitch muscle cells showed conductance-increase depolarizations of approximately 20 mV following 1 s pressure ejections of 10-4 M acetylcholine from micropipettes placed immediately adjacent to the muscle cells. These responses were blocked when hexamethonium was bath applied prior to the pressure-applied acetylcholine. The results suggest the Pd-3/Pd-4 motoneuron to slow-twitch muscle cell junctions are cholinergic with nicotinic-like receptors, while the Pd-1A/Pd-2A to fast-twitch muscle cell connections are likely cholinergic, but with a different receptor type.

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