Developmental changes in the expression level of connexin36 in the rat retina

Tamás Kovács-Öller, Katalin Raics, József Orbán, M. Nyitrai, B. Völgyi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Connexin36 (Cx36) is the major gap junction forming protein in the brain and the retina; thus, alterations in its expression indicate changes in the corresponding circuitry. Many structural changes occur in the early postnatal retina before functional neuronal circuits are finalized, including those that incorporate gap junctions. To reveal the time-lapse formation of inner retinal gap junctions, we examine the developing postnatal rat retina from birth (P0) to young adult age (P20) and follow the expression of Cx36 in the mRNA and protein levels. We found a continuous elevation in the expression of both the Cx36 transcript and protein between P0 and P20 and a somewhat delayed Cx36 plaque formation throughout the inner plexiform layer (IPL) starting at P10. By using tristratificated calretinin positive (CaR+) fibers in the IPL as a guide, we detected a clear preference of Cx36 plaques for the ON sublamina from the earliest time of detection. This distributional preference became more pronounced at P15 and P20 due to the emergence and widespread expression of large (>0.1 μm2) Cx36 plaques in the ON sublamina. Finally, we showed that parvalbumin-positive (PV+) AII amacrine cell dendrites colocalize with Cx36 plaques as early as P10 in strata 3 and 4, whereas colocalizations in stratum 5 became characteristic only around P20. We conclude that Cx36 expression in the rat IPL displays a characteristic succession of changes during retinogenesis reflecting the formation of the underlying electrical synaptic circuitry. In particular, AII cell gap junctions, first formed with ON cone bipolar cells and later with other AII amacrine cells, accounted for the observed Cx36 expressional changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-302
Number of pages14
JournalCell and Tissue Research
Volume358
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Fingerprint

Retina
Gap Junctions
Amacrine Cells
Myelin P0 Protein
Calbindin 2
connexin 36
Parvalbumins
Connexins
Intercellular Junctions
Dendrites
Young Adult
Parturition
Messenger RNA
Brain
Proteins

Keywords

  • AII amacrine
  • Calretinin
  • Electrical synapse
  • Inner plexiform layer
  • Parvalbumin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Cell Biology
  • Histology
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Developmental changes in the expression level of connexin36 in the rat retina. / Kovács-Öller, Tamás; Raics, Katalin; Orbán, József; Nyitrai, M.; Völgyi, B.

In: Cell and Tissue Research, Vol. 358, No. 2, 2014, p. 289-302.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kovács-Öller, Tamás ; Raics, Katalin ; Orbán, József ; Nyitrai, M. ; Völgyi, B. / Developmental changes in the expression level of connexin36 in the rat retina. In: Cell and Tissue Research. 2014 ; Vol. 358, No. 2. pp. 289-302.
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