7 Comparative Locomotor Systems

Behavioral Neuroscience

  1. Karim Fouad PhD1,
  2. David Bennett PhD1,
  3. Hanno Fischer PhD2,
  4. Ansgar Büschges PhD3

Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118133880.hop203007

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

How to Cite

Fouad, K., Bennett, D., Fischer, H. and Büschges, A. 2012. Comparative Locomotor Systems. Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition. 3:7.

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Alberta, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

  2. 2

    University of St. Andrews, School of Biology, St. Andrews, Scotland

  3. 3

    University of Cologne, Zoological Institute, Cologne, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 26 SEP 2012


The locomotor system is one of the best-explored neuronal motor systems and has provided detailed insight into the function and organization of neuronal networks. The success of studies in the locomotor field are partly based on the finding that basic principles of these networks are very similar in vertebrates and invertebrates, allowing very in-depth studies at various physiological levels. In the following paragraphs we will discuss the neuronal control of locomotion and the organization of the underlying networks. This will involve how sensory signals and neuromodulatory input can change network properties, and how these networks can respond to injuries of the nervous systems.


  • walking;
  • swimming flying;
  • neuronal networks;
  • central pattern generator;
  • plasticity;
  • neuromodulation