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Brain Res. 1986 Oct 29;386(1-2):351-63.

The olfactory gonadotropin-releasing hormone immunoreactive system in mouse.


The olfactory gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) system in mice was studied with immunofluorescence in combination with lesions of the olfactory bulb and retrograde transport of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) which was administered intravascularly, intranasally or into the subarachnoid space. GnRH-positive neurons were located in the two major branches forming the septal roots of the nervus terminalis, in the ganglion terminale, within the fascicles of the nervus terminalis throughout its extent, in a conspicuous band which connects the ventral neck of the caudal olfactory bulb with the accessory olfactory bulb and in the nasal mucosa. GnRH-positive fibers were seen in all areas in which neurons were found, i.e. in the rostral septum, the ganglion and nervus terminalis and in the nasal subepithelium. In addition, a broad bundle of fibers was observed to surround the entire caudal olfactory bulb, connecting the rostral sulcus rhinalis with the ventrocaudal olfactory bulb. Fibers were seen in close association with the main and accessory olfactory bulb, with the fila olfactoria and with the nasal mucosa. Throughout the olfactory bulb and the nasal epithelium, an association of GnRH fibers with blood vessels was apparent. Intravascular and intranasal injection of HRP resulted in labeling of certain GnRH neurons in the septal roots of the nervus terminalis, the ganglion terminale, the nervus terminalis, the caudal ventrodorsal connection and in the accessory olfactory bulb. After placement of HRP into the subarachnoid space dorsal to the accessory olfactory bulb, about 50% of the GnRH neurons in the accessory olfactory bulb and in the ventrodorsal connection were labeled with HRP. Also, a few GnRH neurons in the rostral septum, the ganglion terminale and in the fascicles of the nervus terminalis had taken up the enzyme. Lesions of the nervus terminalis caudal to the ganglion terminale resulted in sprouting of GnRH fibers at both sites of the knife cut. Lesions rostral to the ganglion terminale induced sprouting mostly at the distal site of the knife cut while most but not all GnRH fibers proximal to the lesion had disappeared. The results of the present study indicate that the olfactory GnRH system is mostly associated with the nervus terminalis. This cranial nerve apparently projects to the central nervous system as well as the periphery. The results of the HRP uptake studies suggest that the GnRH neurons in the nervus terminalis have access to fenestrated capillaries in the subepithelial connective tissue of the nasal mucosa, to the nasal epithelium proper, and to the subarachnoid space.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS).

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