Journal of Comparative Physiology A

, Volume 178, Issue 4, pp 537–542 | Cite as

Response characteristics of a spider warm cell: temperature sensitivities and structural properties

  • R. Ehn
  • H. Tichy
Original Paper


The sensitivity of a warm cell to temperature stimulation was examined electrophysiologically on the spider Cupiennius salei. The relationship between sensitivity and structure of the warm cell was assessed by comparing both the electrophysiological and electron-microscopic data with those described for insect cold cells. Stimulation of the spider warm cell with slowly oscillating temperature change and steady temperature elicited less sensitive responses than in insect cold cells. These characteristics are reflected in the size of the dendritic membrane area, which is smaller in the spider warm cell compared to the insect cold cells. Rapid step-like temperature change produced in the spider warm cell very sensitive responses when compared with data of insect cold cells. The dendritic tip of the spider warm cell is exposed at a pore on the tip of the sensillum but is covered by the cuticle of the sensillum in the insect cold cells.

Key words

Temperature sensitivity Spider warm cell Insect cold cells Dendritic membrane area Dendritic tip position 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Ehn
    • 1
  • H. Tichy
    • 1
  1. 1.Biologiezentrum, Institut für Zoologie, Universität WienWienAustria

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