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J Neurochem. 1993 May;60(5):1777-82.

Cellular localization of transforming growth factor-alpha mRNA in rat forebrain.

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Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, University of Kentucky, Lexington.


The cellular localization of transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF alpha) mRNA in juvenile and adult rat forebrain was examined using in situ hybridization with a 35S-labeled cRNA probe. TGF alpha cRNA-labeled neuronal perikarya were distributed across many forebrain regions including the olfactory bulb, caudate-putamen, nucleus accumbens, olfactory tubercle, ventral pallidum, amygdala, hippocampal stratum granulosum and CA3 stratum pyramidale, and piriform, entorhinal, and retrosplenial cortices. TGF alpha cRNA-hybridizing cells were also localized to several thalamic nuclei and to the suprachiasmatic, dorsomedial, and ventromedial nuclei of the hypothalamus. In addition, labeled cells were present in regions of white matter including the corpus callosum, anterior commissure, internal and external capsules, optic tract, and lateral olfactory tract. Thus, both neurons and glia appear to synthesize TGF alpha in normal brain. Hybridization densities were greater in neuronal fields at 2 weeks of age compared with the adult, suggesting a role for TGF alpha in the development of several forebrain systems. Our results demonstrating the prominent and wide-spread expression of TGF alpha mRNA in forebrain, combined with the extremely low abundance of epidermal growth factor mRNA in brain, support the argument that TGF alpha is the principal endogenous ligand for the epidermal growth factor receptor in normal brain.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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