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Neurosci Lett. 1995 Nov 10;200(1):9-12.

Ultrastructural associations between dopamine terminals and local circuit neurons in the monkey prefrontal cortex: a study of calretinin-immunoreactive cells.

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Department of Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh, PA 15260, USA.


Dopamine terminals in the monkey prefrontal cortex (PFC) synaptically target the distal dendrites of both pyramidal cells and GABA interneurons. We sought to determine whether the latter input includes the innervation of interneurons that utilize calretinin (CalR) as a calcium-binding protein. Sections through prefrontal area 9 of cynomolgus monkeys were processed by immunoperoxidase for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) to label dopamine varicosities and by pre-embedding immunogold for CalR. Electron microscopic examination of layers 1-3 revealed numerous TH-immunoreactive (TH-ir) terminals, but few were located in the vicinity of CalR-ir dendrites. Although close appositions were sometimes detected between these labeled processes, no synaptic inputs from TH-ir terminals to CalR-ir dendrites were observed. However, in adjacent sections from the same animals, TH-ir terminals were observed to synapse on GABA-ir dendrites. These findings suggest that dopamine afferents to the monkey PFC target the subclasses of GABA interneurons that do not contain CalR.

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