Anuran dorsal column nucleus: organization, immunohistochemical characterization, and fiber connections in Rana perezi and Xenopus laevis. J Comp Neurol

Department of Cell Biology, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain.
The Journal of Comparative Neurology (Impact Factor: 3.23). 01/1996; 363(2):197-220. DOI: 10.1002/cne.903630204
Source: PubMed


As part of a research program on the evolution of somatosensory systems in vertebrates, the dorsal column nucleus (DCN) was studied with (immuno)histochemical and tract-tracing techniques in anurans (the large green frog, Rana perezi, and the clawed toad, Xenopus laevis). The anuran DCN contains some nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate diaphorase-positive neurons, very little calbindin D-28k, and a distinct parvalbumin-positive cell population. The anuran DCN is innervated by primary and non-primary spinal afferents, by primary afferents from cranial nerves V, VII, IX, and X, by serotonin-immunoreactive fibers, and by peptidergic fibers. Non-primary DCN afferents from the spinal cord appear to arise throughout the spinal cord, but particularly from the ipsilateral dorsal gray. The present study focused on the efferent connections of the DCN, in particular the targets of the medial lemniscus. The medial lemniscus could be traced throughout the brainstem and into the diencephalon. Along its course, the medial lemniscus gives off collaterals to various parts of the reticular formation, to the octavolateral area, and to the granular layer of the cerebellum. At mesencephalic levels, the medial lemniscus innervates the lateral part of the torus semicircularis as well as various tegmental nuclei. A striking difference between the two species studied is that while in R. perezi medial lemniscal fibers do not reach the tectum mesencephali, in X. laevis, intermediate and deep tectal layers are innervated. Beyond the midbrain, both dorsal and ventral thalamic areas are innervated by the medial lemniscus. The present study shows that the anuran "lemniscal pathway" is basically similar to that of amniotes.

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    • "As in birds and mammals, a projection to the torus semicircularis mediated by the medial lemniscus and originating from the DCN or one of its funicular nuclear homologs has been described in a teleost (Finger, 2000) and in amphibians (Muñoz et al., 1995). In fish and amphibians, auditory (octaval), mechanosensory and electrosensory inputs to the torus have traditionally been described as terminating separately (Bell, 1981; McCormick, 1982; 1989; De Wolf et al., 1983; Haugede-Carre, 1983; Echteler, 1984; Finger and Tong, 1984; Boord and Northcutt, 1988), but in birds, reptiles and lamprey there seems to be some overlap of auditory and somatosensory inputs to the torus (Belekhova et al., 1985; Künzle, 1986 Wild, 1995; present study; Gonzáles et al., 1999). "
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    ABSTRACT: The Wulst of birds, which is generally considered homologous with the isocortex of mammals, is an elevation on the dorsum of the telencephalon that is particularly prominent in predatory species, especially those with large, frontally placed eyes, such as owls. The Wulst, therefore, is largely visual, but a relatively small rostral portion is somatosensory in nature. In barn owls, this rostral somatosensory part of the Wulst forms a unique physical protuberance dedicated to the representation of the contralateral claw. Here we investigate whether the input to this "claw area" arises from dorsal thalamic neurons that, in turn, receive their somatosensory input from the gracile nucleus. After injections of biotinylated dextran amine into the gracile nucleus and cholera toxin B chain into the claw area, terminations from the former and retrogradely labeled neurons from the latter overlapped substantially in the thalamic nucleus dorsalis intermedius ventralis anterior. These results indicate the existence in this species of a "classical" trisynaptic somatosensory pathway from the body periphery to the telencephalic Wulst, via the dorsal thalamus, one that is likely involved in the barn owl's predatory behavior. The results are discussed in the context of somatosensory projections, primarily in this and other avian species.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2008 · The Journal of Comparative Neurology
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    • "In N.IX–X, cell perikarya and neurites were immunolabeled with the calbindin antibody (Fig. 1 A). Calbindin expression elsewhere in the rhombencephalon was limited to the Purkinje cells of the cerebellum, cells of the dorsal tegmental area of the medulla, and sparse cells in the reticular formation and central gray as well as the dorsal rhombencephalic calbindin-expressing nuclei previously described by Muñoz et al. (1995) "
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    ABSTRACT: Androgens can rescue axotomized motor neurons from cell death. Here we examine a possible mechanism for this trophic action in juvenile Xenopus laevis: regulation of a calcium-binding protein, calbindin, after axotomy. Western analysis revealed that a monoclonal antibody to calbindin D specifically recognizes a single approximately 28 kDa band in X. laevis CNS and rat cerebellum. Retrograde transport of peroxidase combined with immunohistochemistry demonstrated that somata, axons, and synaptic terminals of laryngeal motor neurons in nucleus (N.) IX-X of X. laevis are calbindin-positive. The number of calbindin-positive cells was compared in the intact and axotomized sides of N.IX-X of gonadectomized males that were either hormonally untreated or DHT-treated for 1 month. Although axotomy decreased the number of calbindin-positive cells by 86% in hormonally untreated males, the decrease was only 56% in DHT-treated animals. Compared with hormonally untreated animals, the number of calbindin-labeled cells in N.IX-X of DHT-treated males was increased in both the intact (14%) and axotomized sides (75%). We conclude that axotomy decreases and that DHT enhances calbindin immunoreactivity in N.IX-X. Axotomy-induced decrease in calbindin immunoreactivity precedes cell loss in N.IX-X and may impair the capacity of motor neurons to regulate cytoplasmic calcium. Androgen-mediated maintenance of calbindin expression is thus a candidate cellular mechanism for trophic maintenance of hormone target neurons.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 1997 · The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
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    ABSTRACT: The afferent and efferent connections of the frog principal nucleus (TP) of torus semicircularis (TOS) and superior olive (SO) were examined by employing the anterograde and retrograde transport patterns of Phaseolus vulgaris leucoagglutinin (PHA-L). After injecting the tracer into these nuclei it was found that the TP projected to the ipsilateral posterior and central thalamic nuclei, all subdivisions of the bilateral TDS and the ipsilateral nucleus isthmi (NI). In the rhombencephalon the projection was restricted mainly to the contralateral SO and the cochlear nucleus (CN). Retrogradely labeled cells were found in most of the areas that contained anterogradely labeled terminals. The termination areas of the SO fibers were similar to the projections of fibers of TP origin in the diencephalic and in the mesencephalic auditory centers. A strong projection was followed into the contralateral SO; the CNs received fibers at both sides. Caudally to the SO the reticular formation, the spinal nucleus of the trigeminal nerve, the solitary nucleus and the dorsal column nuclei were supplied by the fibers of the SO origin. Retrogradely labeled cells were found in the TOS, tegmental nuclei, solitary nucleus, dorsal column nuclei and in the spinal nucleus of the trigeminal nerve. Our results indicate that the frog auditory pathway is more complex at the level of the secondary and tertiary fiber projections than has been previously recognized.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 1996 · Acta Biologica Hungarica
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