We carried out an electron microscopy study of possible synaptic contacts of the neurons of intracortical transplants of the rat brain fascia dentata with targets in the recipient somatosensory cortex. The axons of fascia dentata granular cell and their synaptic terminals could be easily identified in the neocortex due to their distinct morphological features (mossy fibers), although the fascia dentate cells normally do not interact with the neocortex. Thin nonmyelenized mossy fibers were found in both an intermediate zone between the transplant and brain and in the adjacent brain. Their presynaptic buds, like in situ, had large size and formed characteristic terminal, intraterminal, and en passant multiple synaptic contacts and desmosome-like junctions. The aberrant nerve fibers used perykaryons, dendrites of varying diameter, and dendrite spikes of the somatosensory cortex pyramidal neurons as postsynaptic targets in the neocortex. In addition to vacant spaces that appeared in the brain as a result of transplantation, the ingrowing axons induced the formation of additional contact sites: deep invaginations of the plasmalemma of perykaryons, somatic spikes, terminal branchings of dendrites, and dendritic outgrowths of complex branched shape. These aberrant contacts were characterized by the presence of polyribosomes, endoplasmic reticulum cisternae, and mitochondria in the postsynaptic loci. Osmiophility and extension of desmosome-like junctions were also enhanced in such synapses. Thus, it was shown that mossy fibers ingrowing in the recipient neocortex were capable of forming cell-to-cell contacts with signs of functional synapses to atypical cell targets.
Russian Journal of Developmental Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 13, 2004
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