Protein kinase c-beta-like immunoreactivity in the developing and adult rat adrenal gland

Histochem J. 1991 Aug;23(8):375-80. doi: 10.1007/BF01042183.


Protein kinase c-beta-like immunoreactivity was studied in the adrenal gland of adult rats and at different pre- and postnatal stages of development (E17-P21) with an antibody specific to both the beta 1 and beta 2 subtypes of the kinase. In the adult rat adrenal gland, the immunoreactivity was seen in numerous nerve fibres in the adrenal medulla both in bundles and individually forming occasionally dense networks around chromaffin cell groups. Several protein kinase c-beta-immunoreactive fibres were also observed transversing the adrenal cortex towards the medulla. No remaining immunoreactive fibres two weeks after transection of the splanchnic nerve could be seen; nor was any immunoreactivity observed in the chromaffin cells of the adrenal medulla or in the cortical cells, but some faintly immunoreactive ganglion cells were detected in the adrenal medulla. The amount and distribution of protein kinase c-beta-like immunoreactivity in the fetal and developing adrenals was very similar to that seen in the adrenal glands of adult rats. On the basis of its localization, the beta-subtype of protein kinase c does not appear to be directly involved in the release of catecholamines from the adrenal medulla, but it might have a role in the regulation of neurotransmitter release from preganglionic cholinergic neurons.

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Glands / embryology
  • Adrenal Glands / enzymology*
  • Adrenal Glands / growth & development
  • Animals
  • Chromaffin System
  • Embryo, Mammalian / ultrastructure
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Male
  • Nerve Fibers / ultrastructure
  • Neurons / metabolism
  • Protein Kinase C / analysis*
  • Protein Kinase C / immunology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase / analysis


  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase
  • Protein Kinase C