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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

First characterization of 6-hydroxytryptamine in the rat midbrain by using specific antibodies.

The visualization of serotonin, 5-methoxytryptamine, and tryptamine in the rat midbrain has been made possible by the development of antibodies raised against these conjugated molecules. It has been suggested that 6-hydroxytryptamine (6-HT) might also be a neurotransmitter in this region. To test this hypothesis, 6-HT was synthesized and antibodies were raised in the rabbit. The high avidity (IC50 = 5 x 10(-9) M) and specificity [cross-reactivity ratio between 6-HT-glutaraldehyde (G)-bovine serum albumin (BSA) and 5-HT-G-BSA, the most immunoreactive compound, was 1,500] rendered these antibodies reliable tools for specific molecular detection of 6-HT in the G-fixed tissues. In the dopaminergic region, 6-HT immunoreactivity was noted in the substantia nigra but was particularly intense in the red nuclei, where it seems to be localized in the magnocellular division in the form of large 6-HT neurons. In contrast, there were few 6-HT neurons in the raphe nuclei. Thus, 6-HT may be a new putative neurotransmitter existing in the red nuclei, in addition to the other neurotransmitters already described in this region, in the nigro-rubral pathway, and in the rubral projection from the dorsal raphe nuclei. 6-HT is possibly implicated in motor control and might exert hallucinogenic properties as do other 6-hydroxylated indoleamines.[1]


  1. First characterization of 6-hydroxytryptamine in the rat midbrain by using specific antibodies. Dabadie, H., Geffard, M., Charrier, M.C., Locuratolo, D., Berrier, C., Jacquesy, J.C. J. Neurochem. (1992) [Pubmed]
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