Wasserthal, W. & Wasserthal, L.T. (1980): Multinucleate neurons with neurohaemal and synapsing axons at the heart and alary muscles of the butterfly Caligo beltrao Illinger (Lepidoptera). - Cell Tissue Res. 212: 351-362.
The segmental heart nerves of Caligo beltrao Illiger (Brassolidae) were examined by transmission and scanning electron microscopy. Heart and alary muscles are innervated by branching processes of single multinucleate neurons (MNNs). There is one MNN situated at each segmental fan-shaped group of alary muscles. The main nerve of the MNN consists of a bundle of processes. This nerve extends centripetally toward the CNS and corresponds to the dorsal portion of the transverse nerve. However, neither axo-somatic nor axo-axonic synapses were found, the presence of which might suggest that this nerve contains axons of different neuronal origin. The synaptic contacts of the MNN with axons originating from the CNS are therefore assumed to be established beyond the spiracular region. In addition to the neuro-muscular junctions of the smaller centrifugal axon branches there are neurohaemal release sites along the entire length of all MNN axon bundles. Axon terminals are packed with either dense-cored or multigranular vesicles. Both morphological types of vesicles are, however, found side by side in the large axons and in the perikaryon, often at the same golgi element. These morphological findings may support the concept that more than one transmitter is produced in a single neuron. Questions that arise in reference to dual or polyfunctional neurons and to the control of cardiac activity are discussed.

heart neuron