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

Expression of nerve growth factor and neurotrophin-3 mRNAs in hippocampal interneurons: morphological characterization, levels of expression, and colocalization of nerve growth factor and neurotrophin-3.

We have investigated the distribution and morphology of hippocampal interneurons that express the neurotrophins nerve growth factor (NGF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) in the rat. For this study, we combined in situ hybridization for the detection of NGF and NT-3 mRNAs and immunocytochemistry against the calcium- binding proteins parvalbumin (PARV), calretinin (CALR), and calbindin (CALB). Whereas the majority of PARV+ interneurons expressed NGF mRNA, only subsets of CALR- and CALB-immunoreactive interneurons (23% and 24%, respectively) displayed NGF hybridization. Most CALB/NGF+ cells were located in the stratum oriens/alveus of the CA3-CA1 regions, suggesting that they may include the population of CALB+, hippocamposeptal, nonpyramidal neurons. Most of the nonspiny CALR/NGF+ neurons were located within or in the vicinity of the pyramidal layer and had faint CALR immunostaining and stellate, thin dendrites. Regarding the spiny CALR-immunoreactive cells, we found that most of these neurons in the hilus were NGF+, whereas only 59% of displayed NGF hybridization in the stratum lucidum of the CA3 region. A small subset of PARV- and CALR-immunoreactive cells expressed NT-3 mRNA (16% and 13%, respectively). NT-3 message was not found in the large basket cells of the dentate gyrus, whereas the distribution and morphology of CALR/NT-3+ cells were similar to those of nonspiny CALR/NGF+ cells. In fact, double in situ hybridization analysis confirmed that most NT-3+ neurons also expressed NGF mRNA, indicating coexpression of both neurotrophins in subpopulations of PARV+ and CALR+ neurons. Moreover, the level of NGF mRNA expression was higher in PARV+ neurons than in CALR- and CALB-immunoreactive interneurons, whereas NT-3 message was expressed similarly in PARV+ and CALR+ neurons. The present findings show a differential expression of NGF and NT-3 mRNAs in subsets of hippocampal interneurons and suggest that the expression of these transcripts depends on factors intrinsic to particular cell types.[1]


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