Dopamine signaling allows neural circuits to generate coordinated behaviors

For a nematode worm, a big lawn of the bacteria that it eats is a great place for it to disperse its eggs so that each hatchling can emerge into a nutritive environment. That’s why when a worm speedily roams about a food patch it methodically lays its eggs as it goes. A new study by neuroscientists investigates this example of action coordination – where egg-laying is coupled to the animal’s roaming – to demonstrate how a nervous system coordinates distinct behavioral outputs. That’s a challenge many organisms face, albeit in different ways, during daily life.

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