In early July 2019, Nature published maps of all the connections in the nervous system of both sexes (male and hermaphrodite) of the adult C. elegans.
By focusing on C. elegans's brains, researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine have described a map of all the neurons, as well as all 7,000 or so complex connectomes between those neurons. Some substantial differences have been revealed in both sexes of the species. The neural circuits controlling the sex-unique behaviours of egg laying and copulation include both sex-specific and sex-shared neurons. A part of sex-shared neurons in the adult male are, however, considerably distinct from the adult hermaphrodite, and serve different functions in the two sexes.
The findings represent a critical milestone in the field of connectomics, which provides insights for understanding the neural circuits responsible for the worm’s behaviour.
Origin of article: Whole-animal connectomes of both Caenorhabditis elegans sexes