Ph.D., 1980, Indiana University
Electron microscopy; development, structure and
function of the mechanosensory lateral line
My research interests lie in the gross and ultrastructural anatomy of the mechanosensory lateral line of amphibians and fish and in its development. End organs of this system, neuromasts, are arranged either directly on the skin surface (superficial neuromasts) or in subdermal canals (canal neuromasts) where they transduce changes in water velocity or acceleration, respectively. Recently, I have been examining the ultrastructure of these sensory structures focusing on their relations with the surrounding dermal tissue and with the neurons that innervate them in order to ascertain if the functional differences between canal and superficial neuromasts is reflected structurally or neurally.
Current projects include mapping the neural projections from neuromasts into the central nervous system, and a joint developmental/behavioral study whose goal is the elucidation of the pre- and post-hatching development of this system in the mottled sculpin (Cottus bairdi). I intend to examine how the anatomy of the developing system affects the feeding behavior of the hatchlings.
Most recently, I have extended these studies to the general role of sensory systems in larval feeding and escape responses in the smelt and alewife, exotic species now indigenous to the Great Lakes and of ecological and commercial interest.
Janssen, J., Slattery, M. and W. Jones 1993. Locomotion and feeding responses to mechanical stimuli in Histiodraco velifer(Artedidraconidae). Copeia (3):885-889.
Jones, W.R. and J.Janssen. 1992. Lateral line development and feeding behavior in the mottled sculpin, Cottus bairdi (Scorpaeni formen, Cottidae). Copeia (2):485-492.