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Exp Cell Res. 1986 Jun;164(2):546-50.

'Neuropeptide tyrosine' (NPY) is co-stored with noradrenaline in vascular but not in parenchymal sympathetic nerves of brown adipose tissue.


By using immunohistochemistry it is shown that both the parenchymal and vascular sympathetic innervation in the interscapular depot of brown adipose tissue in the rat contain the catecholamine-synthesizing enzyme tyrosine-hydroxylase (TH). In contrast, 'neuropeptide tyrosine' (NPY) is selectively present in the vascular sympathetic nerves of the tissue--but not in nerves around brown fat cells. This is consistent with the presence of two populations of neurons (containing either TH alone or TH plus NPY) in the stellate ganglion, which is the probable origin of the sympathetic nerves in the interscapular brown adipose tissue. Furthermore, the perivascular NPY-positive nerves in the brown adipose tissue disappeared after 6-hydroxydopamine treatment, demonstrating their noradrenergic nature. Taken together, these findings suggest that sympathetic nerves to blood vessels and brown fat cells represent two separate subpopulations of autonomic neurons.

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