Antibodies against Pax6 immunostain amacrine and ganglion cells and neuronal progenitors, but not rod precursors, in the normal and regenerating retina of the goldfish

J Neurobiol. 1996 Mar;29(3):399-413. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-4695(199603)29:3<399::AID-NEU10>3.0.CO;2-4.


Pax6 is a developmental regulatory gene that plays a key role in the development of the embryonic brain, eye, and retina. This gene is also expressed in discrete groups of neurons within the adult brain. In this study, antibodies raised against a fusion protein from a zebra fish pax6 cDNA were used to investigate the expression of the pax6 gene in the mature, growing, and regenerating retina of the goldfish. On western blots of retinal proteins, the pax6 antibodies recognize a single band at the approximate size of the zebra fish pax6 protein. In retinal sections, the antibodies label the nuclei of mature amacrine and some ganglion cells. At the retinal margin, where neurogenesis and cellular differentiation continually occur in goldfish, the antibodies label neuronal progenitors and the newly postmitotic neurons. Following injury and during neuronal regeneration, the antibodies label mitotically active progenitors of regenerating neurons. Rod precursors, proliferating cells that normally give rise solely to rod photoreceptors and are the presumed antecedents of the injury-stimulated neuronal progenitors, are not immunostained by antibodies to the pax6 protein. The results of this study document the identity of pax6-expressing cells in the mature retina and demonstrate that in the goldfish pax6 is expressed in neuronal progenitors during both retinal growth and regeneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Division / physiology
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / analysis
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / immunology*
  • Eye Proteins
  • Goldfish / physiology*
  • Homeodomain Proteins*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Nerve Regeneration / physiology*
  • PAX6 Transcription Factor
  • Paired Box Transcription Factors
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Retina / cytology
  • Retina / growth & development
  • Retina / injuries
  • Retinal Ganglion Cells / chemistry*
  • Retinal Rod Photoreceptor Cells / chemistry
  • Stem Cells / chemistry
  • Transcription Factors / analysis
  • Transcription Factors / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Eye Proteins
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • PAX6 Transcription Factor
  • Paired Box Transcription Factors
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Transcription Factors