Nerve cell clusters in dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens of the male rat demonstrated by glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity

M. Zoli, A. Cintra, I. Zini, L. B. Hersh, Jan-Ake Gustafsson, K. Fuxe, L. F. Agnati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cells have been analysed in the dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens of the rat by means of a monoclonal antibody against rat liver glucocorticoid receptor. Glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity was present in the nuclei of the vast majority of the striatal nerve cells. The analysis of sections stained with glucocorticoid receptor antibody and cresyl violet showed that around 90% of the entire striatal neuronal population contained glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity. By means of the double immunoperoxidase technique evidence was provided that somatostatin- and choline acetyltransferase-immunoreactive nerve cells in the striatum do not contain glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity. The density of glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cells in the grey matter and the presence of clusters of glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cells have been investigated in three fields located in the medial and central dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens at the coronal level A 8620 μm according to the Konig and Klippel atlas using computer-assisted image analysis. Every aggregate containing three or more glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cells, which had an intercenter distance less than the mean diameter (10-11 μm) of the striatal cells, was considered an island. A higher density of both glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cell nuclei and islands was found in the nucleus accumbens with respect to dorsal striatal areas. The most frequent island formed consisted of three to ten nerve cells both in dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens. Furthermore, some nucleus accumbens islands contained up to 100 nerve cells, whereas in the dorsal striatum the maximum number of glucocorticoid receptor-immunoreactive nerve cells per island ranged from 50 to 60. The present procedure proved to be a sensitive method to reveal clusters of chemically identified structures and provided evidence for a basic cytoarchitectonic organization of the dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens of the rat. This paper also demonstrated that the vast majority, but not all, striatal nerve cells contained glucocorticoid receptor immunoreactivity, and thus may be under the control of circulating glucocorticoids. In fact, only small transmitter-identified neuronal populations, such as somatostatin- and choline acetyltransferase-immunoreactive nerve cells, were devoid of glucorticoid receptor immunoreactivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)355-366
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Chemical Neuroanatomy
Volume3
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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