A potential screening technique for neurotransmitters in the CNS: Model studies in the cat spinal cord

William R. Woodward, Sivert H. Lindström

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper describes a potential screening technique for neurotranmitters in the CNS. The method uses the injection of small volumes of high specific activity radioactive transmitter precursor substances into regions of physiologically identified neuronal cell bodies, and the later identification of the substances transported down axons to target tissues. Experiments were performed in motoneurons in the cat spinal cords to test the feasibility of the method. Tritiated choline, glutamate, tyramine and tryptophan were pressure-injected into the ventral horn using glass micropipettes that were adapted to allow similtaneous physiological recording and injection. Only tritiated acetylcholine, two unidentified choline metabolites and a small amount of choline were found in the motor axons. The acetylcholine migrated at a rate of greater than 24 mm/day and the movement was blocked by colchicine. The spread of isotope from the injection site was measured by a direct chemical method and by autoradiography, and it was found that isotope spread 1-2 mm from the injection site. One unexpected finding in the autoradiographs was that the motoneurons were selectively labelled following choline injections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-52
Number of pages16
JournalBrain research
Volume137
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 25 1977

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

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