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Neuroscience. 1984 Jul;12(3):775-82.

Immunofluorescence distribution of alpha tubulin, beta tubulin and microtubule-associated protein 2 during in vitro maturation of cerebellar granule cell neurones.


In vivo developmental immunocytochemical studies have recently shown that granule cell axons (parallel fibres) undergo progressive modification of alpha tubulin as they form permanent synapses, a change that is not observed in other microtubule-containing structures (e.g. Purkinje cell dendrites). In this study we have used primary cultures of young rat cerebellum enriched in granule cells to follow maturation of their axons under defined in vitro conditions. Our results show that alpha tubulin is not modified in culture as assessed by immunofluorescence using monoclonal antibodies that recognise different forms of alpha tubulin. We have also confirmed in vivo data showing that microtubule-associated protein 2 is absent from granule cell axons at all developmental stages in vitro. The distribution of axonal cytoskeletal proteins is compared and contrasted during in vivo and in vitro maturation, and considered in relation to differences between the two systems.

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