Presence and distribution of three calcium binding proteins in projection neurons of the adult rat cochlear nucleus

Ágnes Pór, Krisztina Pocsai, Zoltán Rusznák, Géza Szucs

Research output: Article

30 Citations (Scopus)


The presence and distribution of three cytoplasmic calcium binding proteins, calbindin, calretinin, and parvalbumin, have been investigated in the projection neurons of the cochlear nucleus complex in adult rats by using immunohistochemistry in free-floating slices. Identification of the individual cell types was carried out on the basis of their intranuclear localization, morphological characteristics, and (in the cases of pyramidal and bushy neurons) by retrograde labeling with rhodamine-dextran. The most important findings were confirmed by using confocal microscopy. The data obtained in these experiments are the first to demonstrate the presence of parvalbumin in pyramidal neurons and globular and spherical bushy cells of rat cochlear nucleus, whereas octopus and giant cells did not show positivity for parvalbumin. Calretinin was not present in either Purkinje-like cells or giant neurons. According to the double immunolabeling co-localization experiments, the pyramidal neurons, Purkinje-like cells, globular bushy cells, and octopus cells express two different calcium binding proteins in their cytoplasm (although in different combinations) whereas giant cells and spherical bushy cells contain solely calbindin and parvalbumin, respectively. The presence of calretinin in globular bushy cells provides a tool for distinguishing them from spherical bushy cells. The immunolabeling of the fibers and axonal endings of the acoustic nerve in the ventral part of the cochlear nucleus indicated that these structures are also parvalbumin positive. It is concluded that the heterogenous cell composition of the cochlear nucleus is accompanied by a rather complex expression pattern of the cytoplasmic calcium binding proteins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-74
Number of pages12
JournalBrain research
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - márc. 28 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

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