Isthmic origin of neurons of the rat substantia nigra

Neuroscience. 1983 Jun;9(2):373-81. doi: 10.1016/0306-4522(83)90300-7.


This study provides new data on the time of origin, the generation site and the migration route of the young neurons of the substantia nigra of the rat during embryogenesis. The neurons of the substantia nigra are generated on day 12, 13, 14 and 15 of gestation. They settle following a light spatiotemporal rostrocaudal gradient from day 12 to 15. The neurons of the substantia nigra are generated at two different points of the basal plate at the level of the fovea isthmi (meso-isthmic junction) and migrate in radial pattern as two definite streams toward the ventral mesencephalon. From this point they move rostralwards along the surface towards their final site. The main findings of this work are the disclosure that the neurons of the substantia nigra are generated in the region of the isthmus rhombencephali and that its cells do not migrate between existing cells of the mesencephalic tegmentum but first migrate ventralwards in a radial pattern and then rostrally towards their definite site. Numerous neurons of the basal mesencephalon and of the midline structures of the caudal mesencephalon are apparently derived from the region of the fovea isthmi.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Movement
  • Diencephalon / embryology
  • Female
  • Mesencephalon / embryology
  • Neurons / cytology
  • Pregnancy
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Substantia Nigra / embryology*