GABAergic neurons are present in the dorsal column nuclei but not in the ventroposterior complex of rats
Neurons containing glutamatic acid decarboxylase (GAD) are known to exist in the spinal dorsal horn, dorsal column nuclei (DCN), n. ventralis posterior (VP), and somatosensory cortex of cats. Recent work suggested that species differences exist concerning the presence and/or density of GAD-positive neurons in VP. The present experiments demonstrate that, in contrast with carnivores and primates, the rat's VP contains virtually no GAD-positive neurons and that virtually all neurons in it project to the cortex. This conclusion is supported by the failure to find, in Golgi-impregnated material, neurons with characteristics commonly attributed to Golgi type II neurons in VP of cats. The lack of GAD-positive neurons in VP of rats contrasts also with the presence of such neurons in the DCN in the same species. As in cats, about one third of the neurons in the cuneate n. are GAD-positive; these have mostly small perikarya and they are present throughout the nucleus. It is likely that these are intrinsic neurons, i.e. non-projecting beyond the limits of the DCN since a comparable percentage of neurons are unlabeled by simultaneous injections of horseradish peroxidase in multiple targets of the DCN. Like GAD-positive neurons, neurons un...Continue Reading
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