Primary cilia are small, special cellular organelles that provide important sensory and signaling functions during the development of mammalian organs and coordination of postnatal cellular processes. Dysfunction of primary cilia are thought to be the main cause of ciliopathies, a group of genetic disorders characterized by overlapping developmental defects and prominent neurodevelopmental features. Although, disrupted cilia-linked signaling pathways have been implicated in the regulation of numerous neuronal functions, the precise role of primary cilia in the brain are still unknown. Importantly, studies of recent years have highlighted that different functions of primary cilia are reflected by their diverse morphology and unique signaling components localized in the ciliary membrane. In the present study, we conducted a comparative analysis of the expression pattern, distribution and length of adenylyl cyclase 3, somatostatin receptor 3, and ADP-ribosylation factor-like protein 13B expressing primary cilia in the mouse brain. We show that cilia of neurons and astrocytes display a well characterized distribution and ciliary marker arrangements. Moreover, quantitative comparison of their length, density and occurrence rate revealed that primary cilia exhibit region-specific alternations. In summary, our study provides a comprehensive overview of the cellular organization and morphological traits of primary cilia in regions of the physiological adult mouse brain.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience