We have previously demonstrated that neurons which have cell bodies in laminae III or IV of the rat spinal cord, dendrites that enter the superficial laminae and which possess the neurokinin-1 receptor receive a major synaptic input from substance P-containing primary afferent axons. In this study we set out to determine whether these cells also receive monosynaptic input from myelinated primary afferents by using transganglionic transport of the B subunit of cholera toxin to identify the central terminals of myelinated afferents from the sciatic nerve. Dual-immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy revealed apparent contacts between labelled primary afferent terminals and all of the neurokinin-1 receptor-immunoreactive cells examined, although these contacts were much less numerous than those which the cells receive from substance P-containing primary afferents. By using a combined confocal and electron microscopic technique we were able to confirm that synapses were present at some of the contacts between primary afferents and neurokinin-1 receptor-immunoreactive neurons. These results suggest that cells of this type will have wide-dynamic range receptive fields, but with a relatively strong input from nociceptors.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||European Journal of Neuroscience|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1 1998|
- Confocal microscopy
- Electron microscopy
ASJC Scopus subject areas