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Cell Tissue Res. 2001 Jul;305(1):135-46.

Distribution of NADPH-diaphorase-positive ascending interneurones in the crayfish terminal abdominal ganglion.

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Centre for Neuroscience, University of Southampton, UK.


Previous neuropharmacological studies have described the presence of a nitric oxide-cGMP signalling pathway in the crayfish abdominal nervous system. In this study we have analysed the distribution of putative nitric oxide synthase (NOS)-containing ascending interneurones in the crayfish terminal abdominal ganglion using NADPH-diaphorase (NADPHd) histochemistry. Ascending intersegmental interneurones were stained intracellularly using the fluorescent dye Lucifer yellow and the ganglia containing the stained interneurones subsequently processed for NADPHd activity. Fluorescence persisted throughout histochemical processing. These double-labelling experiments showed that 12 of 18 identified ascending interneurones were NADPHd positive. Thus many ascending interneurones that process mechanosensory signals in the terminal ganglion may contain NOS, and are themselves likely sources of NO which is known to modulate their synaptic inputs. Three clear relationships emerged from our analysis between the effects of NO on the synaptic inputs of interneurones, their output properties and their staining for NADPH-diaphorase. First were class 1 interneurones with no local outputs in the terminal ganglion, the NE type interneurones, which had sensory inputs that were enhanced by NO and were NADPHd positive. Second were class 1 interneurones with local and intersegmental output effects that had sensory inputs that were also enhanced by NO but were NADPHd negative. Third were class 2 interneurones with local and intersegmental outputs that had synaptic inputs that were depressed by the action of NO but were NADPHd positive. These results suggest that NO could selectively enhance specific synaptic connections and sensory processing pathways in local circuits.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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