Send to

Choose Destination
Dev Biol. 1988 May;127(1):99-112.

A spatial and temporal analysis of dorsal root and sympathetic ganglion formation in the avian embryo.

Author information

Developmental Biology Center, University of California, Irvine 92717.


The present study explores the formation of the dorsal root and sympathetic ganglia in the trunk of the avian embryo. Particular emphasis was given to the timing of gangliogenesis and the relative positions of the neural crest-derived ganglia with respect to the somites. Neural crest cells and their derivatives were recognized by the HNK-1 antibody. The time at which neural crest cell coalesced to form ganglia was assessed by the state of cellular aggregation. The state of ganglionic differentiation was assessed by the expression of neurofilament proteins and the neural cell adhesion molecule (N-CAM). At the level of the 15th somite, neural crest cells were observed in the rostral half of the somite at stage 15, during active neural crest migration, and occupied the rostral two-thirds of the somite at progressive stages. HNK-1 positive cells appeared to be organized in three to four streams of cells oriented mediolaterally and dorsoventrally. The dorsal root ganglia and sympathetic ganglia were first detectable at stages 20 and 21, respectively. Both ganglionic rudiments were aligned with the rostral portion of the somite. The dorsal root ganglia occupied the rostral two-thirds of each somite, whereas cells in the sympathetic ganglia occupied a region corresponding to approximately one-third of each somite. At the time of condensation of the dorsal root ganglia, abundant neurofilament staining was observed within the ganglia. However, no N-CAM immunoreactivity was detected until three stages later at stage 23. In contrast, the sympathetic ganglia demonstrated both neurofilament and N-CAM immunoreactivity at the time of condensation. The observation that both dorsal root and sympathetic ganglia form in register with the rostral portion of somite suggests that cues localized at these axial levels, perhaps within the rostral somite, may influence the position where neural crest cells condense to form ganglia. In sensory ganglia, N-CAM expression does not correlate with the onset of gangliogenesis, suggesting that molecules other than N-CAM may play an important role in the aggregation of some neuronal populations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center