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J Neurosci Methods. 1990 Feb;31(2):93-100.

An efficient method for estimating the total number of neurons in rat brain cortex.

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Neurological Research Laboratory, University Hospital of Hvidovre, Denmark.


An efficient method for the unbiased estimation of the total number of neurons in rat brain cortex is presented. The method is reasonable fast, the counting procedure takes 2-3 h per rat, and gives an estimate of the total neuron number in cortex cerebri with an CE of 0.10. The rat cerebral cortex is found to have a mean volume of 253 mm3 and to contain a mean of 21 million neurons. The method has been used in a neurotoxicologic study, in which rats were given toluene perorally in doses of 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg/day, respectively, for 12 weeks, followed by an exposure-free period of 4 weeks. The total number of neurons in rat brain cortex cerebri showed no significant difference between exposed and non-exposed animals. The applicability of the method is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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