Precise cellular localization of gamma-aminobutyric acid transaminase (GABA(T)), a degrading enzyme for the neurotransmitter GABA, was determined in the rat substantia nigra (SN) by immunocytochemical experiments using a recently developed monoclonal antibody. In order to characterize the GABA(T)- immunoreactive neurons, double immunocytochemistry was also performed using tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) as a neurochemical marker for dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). Immunoreactivity for GABA(T) was primarily localized in perikarya of the SN. There were only a few GABA(T)- immunoreactive neurons found to display TH immunoreactivity. Most of the GABA(T)-immunoreactive neurons were then identified as reticulata neurons. These results indicate that reticulata neurons are the major nigral neurons that express GABA(T) immunoreactivity and there may be functional compartmentalization of the GABA metabolism in the rat substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr).
Scopus Subject Areas
- Gamma-aminobutyric acid transaminase
- Rat substantia nigra pars reticulata
- Tyrosine hydroxylase