The presence and pattern of pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypeptide (PACAP) type I (PAC1) receptors were identified by means of pre- and post-embedding immunocytochemical methods in the ventral nerve cord ganglia (VNC) of the earthworm Eisenia fetida. Light and electron microscopic observations revealed the exact anatomical positions of labeled structures suggesting that PACAP mediates the activity of some interneurons, a few small motoneurons and certain sensory fibers that are located in ventrolateral, ventromedial and intermediomedial sensory longitudinal axon bundles of the VNC ganglia. No labeling was located on large interneuronal systems such as dorsal medial and lateral giant axon systems and ventral giant axons. At the ultrastructural level labeling was mainly restricted to endo- and plasma membranes showing characteristic unequal distribution in various neuron parts. An increasing abundance of PAC1 receptors located on both rough endoplasmic reticulum and plasma membranes was seen from perikarya to neural processes, indicating that intracellular membrane traffic might play a crucial role in the transportation of PAC1 receptors. High number of PAC1 receptors was found in both pre- and postsynaptic membranes in addition to extrasynaptic sites suggesting that PACAP acts as neurotransmitter and neuromodulator in the earthworm nervous system.
- Electron microscopy
- Immunogold labeling
- Model nervous system
- Pre- and post-embedding immunocytochemistry
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience