Atrial natriuretic peptide-like immunoreactivity in neurons and astrocytes of human cerebellum and inferior olivary complex

J Histochem Cytochem. 2001 Nov;49(11):1453-67. doi: 10.1177/002215540104901113.


Atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) has previously been localized in areas of mammalian brain associated with olfaction, cardiovascular function, and fluid/electrolyte homeostasis. Despite the presence of several types of natriuretic peptide receptors in mammalian cerebellum, neither intrinsic nor extrinsic sources of the natriuretic peptides have been described. In this report we describe the immunohistochemical localization of both intrinsic and extrinsic sources for ANP in human cerebellum. ANP-like immunoreactivity (ANP-LIR) was observed in climbing fibers in the cerebellar molecular layer that probably originated from isolated immunopositive neurons of the inferior olivary complex. Intrinsic sources of ANP-LIR included small subpopulations of protoplasmic and fibrous astrocytes and Bergmann glia, as well as Golgi and Lugaro neurons of the granule cell layer. These results suggest that, in addition to its presumptive roles in local vasoregulation, ANP may serve as a modulator of the activity of Purkinje neurons.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Astrocytes / metabolism*
  • Atrial Natriuretic Factor / metabolism*
  • Cerebellum / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Olivary Nucleus / metabolism*


  • Atrial Natriuretic Factor