Letter | Published:

Occurrence of synapses in peripheral sensory nerves of arachnids

Naturevolume 254pages146148 (1975) | Download Citation



RECEPTOR cells of arthropods are presumed to send their axons directly into the central nervous system1,2. Second order fibres supposedly do not occur in the periphery, and thus the first synaptic connections ought to lie within the ganglionic neuropiles. We report, however, that synapses do occur regularly in peripheral sensory nerves of at least two arachnid orders, whip spiders (Amblypygi) and harvestmen (Opiliones).

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Bullock, T. H., and Horridge, G. A., Structure and Function of the Nervous System of Invertebrates (Freeman, San Francisco and London, 1965).

  2. 2

    Steinbrecht, R. A., J. Cell Sci., 4, 39 (1969).

  3. 3

    Foelix, R. F., Chu-Wang, I. W., and Beck, L., Tissue and Cell (in the press).

  4. 4

    Trujillo-Cenoz, O., Cold Spring Harb. Symp. quant. Biol., 30, 371 (1965).

  5. 5

    Dowling, J. E., and Boycott, B. B., Proc. R. Soc., B 166, 80 (1966).

  6. 6

    Smith, D. S., in Invertebrate Nervous Systems (edit. by Wiersma, C. A. G.) 79 (Chicago University Press, Chicago, 1967).

  7. 7

    Lamparter, H. E., Steiger, U., Sandri, C., and Akert, K., Z. Zellforsch., 99, 435 (1969).

  8. 8

    Schürmann, F. W., and Wechsler, W., Z. Zellforsch., 108, 563 (1970).

  9. 9

    Dowling, J. E., and Chappell, R. L., J. gen. Physiol., 60, 148 (1972).

  10. 10

    Moulins, M., and Noirot, Ch., in Olfaction and Taste, IV (edit. by Schneider, D.) 49 (Wiss. Verlagsgesellschaft, Stuttgart, 1972).

  11. 11

    Farley, R. D., and Milburn, N. S., J. Insect Physiol., 15, 457 (1969).

  12. 12

    Milburn, N. S., and Bentley, D. R., J. Insect Physiol., 17, 607 (1971).

  13. 13

    Parnas, I., and Dagan, D., in Advances in Insect Physiology, 8 (edit. by Beament, J. W. L., Treherne, J. E., and Wigglesworth, V. B.) 95 (Academic, London and New York, 1971).

  14. 14

    Günther, J., and Schürmann, F. W., Z. Zellforsch., 139, 369 (1973).

  15. 15

    Edwards, J. S., and Palka, J., Proc. R. Soc., B 185, 83 (1974).

Download references

Author information


  1. Ruhr Universität Bochum, Lehrstuhl für Zellphysiologie, D 4630, Bochum, West Germany



  1. Search for RAINER F. FOELIX in:

About this article

Publication history


Issue Date



Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.