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Cereb Cortex. 1997 Dec;7(8):711-21.

Differential expression of D1 and D5 dopamine receptors in the fetal primate cerebral wall.

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  • 1Department of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06510, USA.


Previous film autoradiographic studies demonstrated that, during corticogenesis, dopamine receptors of the D1 class are abundant in the embryonic primate cerebral wall. In the present study, we expand these findings by identifying the cellular elements of the fetal occipital cerebral wall expressing D1 and D5 subtypes of the D1 dopamine receptor class. We have examined tissue from monkey fetuses collected at 70, 90 and 120 days of gestation using antibodies directed against C-termini of the D1 and D5 dopamine receptors. At all three embryonic ages studied, we found D1 and D5 receptors expressed by multiple cell types of the embryonic cerebral wall. Both D1 and D5 receptor proteins are produced by pyramidal neurons of the cortical plate and by a variety of interstitial neurons of the subplate and intermediate zones. D1 and D5 receptors are also present in cells of the proliferative ventricular and subventricular zones, some of which were identified as dividing cells. In addition, D1 and D5 receptors are detectable in the protoplasmic astroglial and ependymal cells distinguishable in monkey fetuses collected at 120 days of gestation. Some cellular elements of the embryonic monkey cerebral wall express only one subtype of the D1 dopamine receptor class. For example, embryonic Cajal-Retzius neurons in the marginal zone and migrating neurons in the intermediate zone are immunoreactive only to D5 antisera. In contrast, radial glia can be labeled only with D1 receptor-specific antisera. Finally, only D1 receptors are detectable in the blood vessels penetrating the embryonic monkey cerebral wall. Based on these observations, we propose that dopamine receptors of the D1 class play an important role in regulating cerebral cortical formation and that D1 and D5 receptor subtypes may participate in regulation of different aspects of this process.

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