In this study, the regional distribution and histological localization of somatostatin (SS) immunoreactive (IR) perikarya and fibers was investigated for the first time in the brain of adult Chinese alligator by immunohistochemical method. The results showed SS-IR perikarya and fibers were widely distributed in various parts of the brain except for olfactory bulbs. In the telencephalon, SS-IR perikarya were predominantly located in the cellular layer and deep plexiform layer of dorsomedial and medial cortex, less in the dorsal and lateral cortex, while SS-IR fibers were found in all layers of the cerebral cortex. SS-IR perikarya and fibers were also detected in the dorsal ventricular ridge, hippocampus cortex, accessory olfactory bulb nuclearus, lenticular nucleus, and caudate nucleus. In the diencephalon, SS-IR perikarya and fibers were mainly present in supraoptic nucleus, paraventricular nucleus of hypothalamus, recessus infundibular nucleus, median eminence, the pineal gland and pituitary gland, in which the IR-fibers were abundant, appearing dot-shaped and varicosity-like. In the mesencephalon, they were present in tectum cortex, ependyma of cerebral aqueduct and the periaqueductal grey matter. Additionally, they were also detected in Purkinje's cellular layer of cerebellum, in the reticularis nucleus and raphe nucleus of medulla oblongata. The distribution pattern of SS-IR perikarya and fibers in the brain of Chinese alligator is generally similar to that reported in other reptiles, but also has some specific features. The wide distribution indicated that SS might be a neurotransmitter or neuromodulator which acts on many kinds of target cells with a wide range of physiological functions. Anat Rec, 300:507-519, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Keywords: alligator sinensis; brain; immunohistochemical; somatostatin.
© 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.