Three-dimensional analysis of the whole axonal arbors originating from single CA2 pyramidal neurons in the rat hippocampus with the aid of a computer graphic technique

Brain Res. 1988 Jun 14;452(1-2):255-72. doi: 10.1016/0006-8993(88)90030-3.


The axonal arborization of single pyramidal neurons in field CA2 and the rostral adjacent area of the rat hippocampus was studied with intracellular staining following the pressure microinjection of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) in combination with the immunoperoxidase technique, and was analyzed three-dimensionally with the aid of a computer system. The axonal arbors were composed of two types of axon branches, which were distinguished as the primary and secondary axon branches on the basis of morphological criteria. The axon branches in the ipsilateral hippocampus exhibited almost the contour of the dorsal hippocampus. The large amount of axon branches labeled with HRP in the stratum (str.) oriens of field CA1 was comparable to that in the str. radiatum of the field. The labeled axon branches in the dorsal hippocampus were not distributed uniformly in terminal regions but were focused on the caudolateral CA1a-b subfields. Most primary axon branches ran to a focus along the alvear fibers. The lamellar organization in the CA2 pyramidal neurons may be composed of axon branches running caudally and terminal branches forming a focus. The dense association fibers along the septotemporal axis may connect the lamellar organized circuits to each other. Axon branches in the septal nuclei of each hemisphere formed a rather flat plane. The commissural fibers of the CA2 pyramidal neurons seemed to form a symmetrical projection field in the contralateral side against the median plane. The axonal arbors and dendritic expansion of the pyramidal neurons shown in this study appeared to reveal the whole image of the single CA2 pyramidal neuron.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Axons / ultrastructure*
  • Hippocampus / ultrastructure*
  • Horseradish Peroxidase
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains


  • Horseradish Peroxidase