Expression of GAP-43 mRNA in preganglionic sympathetic neurones of the adult rat spinal cord

Neuroreport. 1995 Dec 29;7(1):338-42.


In situ hybridization combined with intraperitoneal injection of the tracer Fluoro-Gold was used to study the distribution of GAP-43 mRNA in autonomic cell groups of the rat spinal cord. In the thoracic cord, numerous cells expressing GAP-43 mRNA were present in the central autonomic nucleus (lamina X) and in the intermediolateral cell column (IML). In the IML, all Fluoro-Gold-labelled preganglionic neurones were heavily labelled for GAP-43 mRNA. In contrast, Fluoro-Gold-labelled motoneurones were unlabelled or only lightly labelled. Our results indicate that preganglionic sympathetic neurones express GAP-43, a conclusion that is consistent with studies showing that GAP-43 immunoreactive terminals are present in autonomic ganglia. GAP-43 in these neurones may play a role in their continuing anatomical remodelling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autonomic Fibers, Preganglionic / cytology
  • Autonomic Fibers, Preganglionic / metabolism
  • Calmodulin-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • GAP-43 Protein
  • Growth Substances / genetics*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Male
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / genetics*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics*
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / biosynthesis*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Spinal Cord / cytology
  • Spinal Cord / metabolism*
  • Stilbamidines*
  • Sympathetic Nervous System / cytology
  • Sympathetic Nervous System / metabolism


  • 2-hydroxy-4,4'-diamidinostilbene, methanesulfonate salt
  • Calmodulin-Binding Proteins
  • Fluorescent Dyes
  • GAP-43 Protein
  • Growth Substances
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Stilbamidines