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J Comp Neurol. 1986 Sep 8;251(2):160-71.

Development of reticulospinal neurons of the zebrafish. I. Time of origin.


The times of origin (birthdays) of identifiable types of reticulospinal (RS) neurons of the zebrafish (Brachydanio rerio) were determined in order to learn if differences in neuronal characteristics among cell types correlate with differences in their times of origin. The RS neurons are located in the midbrain and hindbrain and cell types can be identified by differences in their cell body sizes and positions, axonal projections, and dendritic arborizations (Metcalfe et al., J. Comp. Neurol. 251: 147-159, 1986). In this study, the birthdays of RS cells were determined by combining 3H-thymidine autoradiography with horseradish peroxidase histochemistry. The RS neurons that were examined were generated between 7 and 28 h after fertilization. Each cell type had a specific time of origin. Dorsally located neurons were always generated earlier than ventral neurons present at the same axial level. Often, but not always, larger and more lateral neurons were born earlier than smaller and more medial ones. There was no overall rostrocaudal gradient of neuronal generation and no overall correlation between time of origin and axonal pathway. However, the times at which RS neurons are generated may be important with respect to the establishment of their characteristic dorsoventral positions in the brain.

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