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Animal EvolutionInterrelationships of the Living Phyla$
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Claus Nielsen

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199606023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199606023.001.0001

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(p.42) 12 NEURALIA
Animal Evolution

Claus Nielsen

Oxford University Press

The Neuralia (Cnidaria + Ctenophora + Bilateria) is a clade whose most conspicuous apomorphy is the presence of specialised communication cells, neurons with axons, electrical synapses known as gap junctions, chemical synapses with various neurotransmitters, and signal propagation via action potentials using sodium ion/potassium ion channels. The neuralians also possess special sensory cells and special muscle cells. Trichoplax has contractile elements in the inner syncytial meshwork, but lacks special nervous, sensory, or muscle cells.

Keywords:   neuralians, Neuralia, apomorphy, cells, neurons, axons, synapses, gap junctions, action potentials, Trichoplax

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