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J Comp Neurol. 1988 May 8;271(2):293-9.

Somatostatin-containing neuron systems in the rat hypothalamus: retrograde tracing and immunohistochemical studies.

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Department of Anatomy, School of Medicine, University of Tokushima, Japan.


By employing a combination of the immunohistochemistry for somatostatin (SRIF) and retrograde tracing with biotinylated wheat germ agglutinin (b-WGA) injected into the posterior pituitary (group 1) or into the median eminence (group 2), functional topography of hypothalamic SRIF neurons was determined in the rat hypothalamus. In group 1, large numbers of WGA-labeled neurons appeared in the rostral periventricular region and in the magnocellular division of the paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei; none of them were SRIF immunoreactive. In group 2, WGA-labeled neurons were numerous in the rostral periventricular region, the parvicellular division of the paraventricular nucleus, and the arcuate nucleus; most of the WGA-labeled neurons in the rostral periventricular region and some in the paraventricular nucleus were SRIF immunoreactive, but none in the arcuate nucleus showed immunoreactivity for SRIF. It is concluded that, in the rat hypothalamus, the locations of neurons containing hypophysiotrophic SRIF are confined within the rostral periventricular region and the parvicellular paraventricular nucleus. Our results do not support previous suggestions that SRIF immunoreactive axons innervate the posterior lobe of the pituitary.

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