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Innervation of the superficial pineal of the rat using retrograde tracing methods


, : Innervation of the superficial pineal of the rat using retrograde tracing methods. American Journal of Anatomy 180(3): 249-254

Fast blue (FB), rhodamine microspheres (RH), horseradish peroxidase (HRP), and wheat germ agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase conjugate (WGA-HRP) were used as retrograde tracers to study the innervation of the rat superficial pineal gland (SP). One of the tracers was injected into the gland of each animal. All four retrograde tracers injected into the gland always labeled neurons in the superior cervical ganglia (SCG). No retrograde labeling was ever seen in the suprachiasmatic nuclei, paraventricular hypothalamic nuclei, lateral hypothalamus, habenular nuceli, amygdalar nuclei, or superior salivatory nuclei. Retrograde labeling was seen in the anterior hypothalamic nuclei, anterior thalamic nuclei, lateral geniculate bodies, and midbrain tectal structures when a tracer spread from the injection site to the overlying cortex, tectum, or commissures. Control studies included injection of tracer into the subarachnoid space around the SP or into structures adjacent to the SP. Only the injection of FB or WGA-HRP into the subarachnoid space labeled neurons in the SCG. This labeling was probably due to the spread of tracer to the choroid plexus. These results agree with recent work confirming the existence of a direct projection of the SCG into the interstitium around pinealocytes. The evidence does not substantiate an innervation originating in the habenular nuclei; the superior salivatory nuclei; or any other diencephalic, midbrain, pontine, or medullary structure.

US$19.90

PMID: 2449067

DOI: 10.1002/aja.1001800306


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