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Costalago-Meruelo, Alicia; Machado, Pedro; Appiah, Kofi; Mujika, Andoni; Leskovsky, Peter; Alvarez, Roberto; Epelde, Gorka; McGinnity, T. M. (2018): Emulation of chemical stimulus triggered head movement in the C-elegans nematode. In: Neurocomputing, Vol. 290: pp. 60-73
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Abstract

For a considerable time, it has been the goal of computational neuroscientists to understand biological nervous systems. However, the vast complexity of such systems has made it very difficult to fully understand even basic functions such as movement. Because of its small neuron count, the C. elegans nematode offers the opportunity to study a fully described connectome and attempt to link neural network activity to behaviour. In this paper a simulation of the neural network in C. elegans that responds to chemical stimulus is presented and a consequent realistic head movement demonstrated. An evolutionary algorithm (EA) has been utilised to search for estimates of the values of the synaptic conductances and also to determine whether each synapse is excitatory or inhibitory in nature. The chemotaxis neural network was designed and implemented, using the parameterisation obtained with the EA, on the Si elegans platform a state-of-the-art hardware emulation platform specially designed to emulate the C. elegans nematode.