Olfactory placodes, that give rise to the olfactory and respiratory epithelia during ontogenesis, are a source of many neurons migrating into forebrain in the direction of growth along the olfactory nerves. The neurons expressing gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) are among the best studied in the population in question. This hormone is responsible for the central regulation of reproduction in adult animals. It was already shown that, in addition to the GnRH-immunoreactive neurons, a small amount of neurons expressing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the first enzyme of catecholamine synthesis, migrates into the forebrain. Such a transient population of TH-immunoreactive neurons was shown by means of single and double immmunohistochemical labeling. The TH neurons were first found on branches of the olfactory, terminal, and vomeronasal nerves, along the trajectory of migration of GnRH-immunoreactive neurons on day 15 of embryogenesis, which preceded the appearance of GnRH-immunoreactive neurons. On days 17–21 of embryogenesis, both populations of neurons were found in almost the same areas and on day 21 single neurons contained both GnRH and TH. There were no neurons expressing decarboxylase of aromatic amino acids (DAA), the second enzyme of catecholamine synthesis, among TH-immunoreactive neurons, thus suggesting noncatecholaminergic nature of these neurons. However, single nonenzymatic DAA-immunoreactive neurons were found in the area of anterior olfactory nuclei in the forebrain, which suggests their involvement in local cooperative synthesis of catecholamines in the area where GnRH-immunoreactive neurons penetrate in the forebrain. Thus, the neurons expressing TH, TH and GnRH, and DAA were found in rats during prenatal period in the nasal part of the head along the nerves projecting into the forebrain. The origin and functional significance of these neurons are discussed.
Russian Journal of Developmental Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 18, 2004
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