Frequency-intensity characteristics of cricket cercal interneurons: broadband units

G. I. Rozhkova (1), V. Y. Vedenina (1), G. Kamper (2)

1) Institute for Problems in Information Transmission, Russian Academy of Sciences, B. Karetnyi per. 19, 10447 Moscow, Russia
2) Abteilung Vergleichende Neurobiologie, Universitat Ulm, D-89069 Ulm, Germany e-mail: guenter.kaemper@biologie.uni-ulm.de Fax: +49-731-5022629


Abstract:

The bilateral pairs of cercal interneurons 10-2a and 10-3a in the cricket terminal ganglion are supposed to constitute a functional system for measuring the direction of air-borne signals, based on their phase-locked responses and selective directional sensitivity. The purpose of this study was to obtain information on the frequency and intensity characteristics and thus the potential working range of this system. By recording intracellularly from the axons of the interneurons we measured responses for stimuli of varying frequency, intensity, and direction. Typically, the stimulus frequency range examined extended from 5 to 600 Hz, at intensities of 0.03-30 mm sm1 (peak-to-peak air-particle velocity). The results show that interneurons 10-2a and 10-3a preserved their level of activity, response type, and direction tuning in the whole frequency range tested. Stimulus-response cross-correlograms revealed that spike trains were synchronized with stimulus waves at even higher frequencies, at least up to 1000 Hz. At a given air-particle velocity in the range of about 2-2.5 logarithmic units, the spike number responses of the interneurons were nearly constant over a wide frequency range. Directional diagrams appeared to be independent of stimulus frequency, both in orientation and in amplitude.


Keywords:

Sensory system Neural filter Frequency tuning Low-frequency sound Acheta domesticus