Immunohistochemical evidence for the presence of synaptic connections of nitrergic neurons in the rat rostral migratory stream.

Research paper by J J Blasko, K K Fabianova, M M Martoncikova, D D Sopkova, E E Racekova

Indexed on: 12 Jul '13Published on: 12 Jul '13Published in: Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology


The rostral migratory stream (RMS) is a migration route for neuroblasts originating in the richest neurogenic niche of the adult mammalian brain-the subventricular zone. Most studies are focused on cellular dynamics of migrating neuroblasts and interactions between neuroblasts and astrocytes which both represent the major cellular component of the RMS. Our previous experiments have brought evidence about the existence of a small population of mature neurons in the adult rat RMS with capacity to produce nitric oxide (NO). In order to further support functional significance of nitrergic cells, the aim of the present study was to determine whether NO producing neurons could form synapses. Sagittal sections from the adult rat brain were processed for simultaneous immunohistochemical detection of neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS), the enzyme present in NO producing cells and synaptophysin, a glycoprotein found in synaptic vesicles. Synaptophysin positivity in the RMS was significantly lower in comparison with other brain areas, but its colocalization with nNOS-positive neurons was obvious. Our results suggest that nitrergic neurons in the RMS could be involved in a neuronal circuitry with potential impact on regulation of neurogenesis in the RMS.