Expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein by immature oligodendroglia and its implications

J Neuroimmunol. 1985 Jun;8(4-6):215-35. doi: 10.1016/s0165-5728(85)80064-3.


Correlative immunocytochemical and electron-microscopic studies of the subpial region of the human fetal spinal cord between 12-18 weeks of ovulation age revealed immature oligodendroglial cells showing immunoreactive GFAP within both the cytoplasm and its processes. By 17-18 weeks, however, GFAP immunoreactivity is no longer evident within such cells. The expression of GFAP by immature oligodendroglial cells in the developing human fetal spinal cord prior to the formation of compact myelin sheaths supports the hypothesis that oligodendrocytes, along with astrocytes, are ultimately derived from radial glial cells.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cytoplasm / metabolism
  • Fetus / cytology
  • Fetus / metabolism
  • Gestational Age
  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein / biosynthesis*
  • Histocytochemistry
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Myelin Basic Protein / biosynthesis
  • Myelin Sheath / embryology
  • Neuroglia / metabolism*
  • Oligodendroglia / metabolism*
  • Oligodendroglia / ultrastructure
  • Spinal Cord / cytology
  • Spinal Cord / embryology*
  • Spinal Cord / metabolism


  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein
  • Myelin Basic Protein