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[Sensory neuron (Mechanosensory),
Neurons of inner labial sensilla, ciliated endings with striated rootlets, synapse directly onto muscle cells. IL1 dendrite ending does not protrude through the hole in the socket cell to the outside. (See a 3-D reconstruction of IL1 cells by R. Newbury & Moerman lab. This movie was created from confocal images of a strain expressing the GFP marker linked to the promoter for Y111B2A.8 using Zeiss LSM 5 Pascal software v. 3.2).
Functions: When worms are touched on either the dorsal or ventral sides of their nose with an eyelash, they interrupt the normal pattern of foraging and undergo an aversive head-withdrawal reflex. This simple reflex is mediated by two classes of mechanosensory neurons (OLQ and IL1) and their synaptic targets, the RMD motor neurons. Killing any of these cells, alone or in combination, diminishes the head withdrawal reflex. IL1, OLQ, and RMD also regulate spontaneous foraging movements. Laser operated animals lacking IL1 and OLQ forage abnormally slowly and make exaggerated dorsal and ventral nose turns (Hart A. et al. 1995; Kaplan J. and Driscoll M., 1997).
See head withdrawal and foraging circuit here.
Receptor expression: Express alpha subunit of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, DEG-3 (Treinin M. and Chalfie M. 1995). Express MEC-6 which is part of the degenerin/epithelial Na+ channel complex (Chelur D. S. et al, 2002).
See eat-20-GFP expression in IL1 cells here (Sbibata Y. et al, 2000).