Analysis of bipolar and amacrine populations in marmoset retina

J Comp Neurol. 2015 Feb 1;523(2):313-34. doi: 10.1002/cne.23683. Epub 2014 Oct 15.


About 15 parallel ganglion cell pathways transmit visual signals to the brain, but the interneuron (bipolar and amacrine) populations providing input to ganglion cells remain poorly understood in primate retina. We carried out a quantitative analysis of the inner nuclear layer in the retina of the marmoset (Callithrix jacchus). Vertical Vibratome sections along the horizontal meridian were processed with immunohistochemical markers. Image stacks were taken with a confocal microscope, and densities of cell populations were determined. The density of flat midget bipolar cells fell from 15,746 cells/mm(2) at 1 mm (8 deg) to 7,827 cells/mm(2) at 3 mm (25 deg). The rod bipolar cell density fell from 8,640 cells/mm(2) at 1 mm to 4,278 cells/mm(2) at 3 mm, but the ratio of the two bipolar cell types did not change with eccentricity. The amacrine cell density ranged from 30,000 cells/mm(2) at 8 deg to less than 15,000 cells/mm(2) at 25 deg, but throughout the retina, the ratio of glycinergic to γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic to amacrine cells remained relatively constant. The fractions of rod bipolar, cone bipolar, amacrine, Müller, and horizontal cells of all cells in the inner nuclear layer were comparable in central and peripheral retina. Marmosets had lower proportions of midget bipolar and rod bipolar in comparison with macaque. These differences were correlated with differences in rod and cone densities between the two species and did not reflect fundamental differences in the wiring between the two species.

Keywords: AB_10000321; AB_10000340; AB_10000343; AB_10000344; AB_2034062; AB_2079751; AB_2114999; AB_2115181; AB_2201526; AB_2314137; AB_2314563; AB_2314597; AB_260795; AB_397880; AB_398225; AB_477375; AB_528264; RRIDs; diffuse bipolar cells; flat midget bipolar cells; inner nuclear layer; primate retina; rod bipolar cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amacrine Cells / cytology*
  • Amacrine Cells / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Callithrix / anatomy & histology*
  • Callithrix / metabolism
  • Cell Count
  • Glycine / metabolism
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Retina / cytology*
  • Retina / metabolism
  • Retinal Bipolar Cells / cytology*
  • Retinal Bipolar Cells / metabolism
  • Species Specificity
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / metabolism


  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid
  • Glycine