Characterization of glial fibrillary acidic protein and astroglial architecture in the brain of a continuously growing fish, the rainbow trout

Abstract

Unlike mammals, some fish, including carp and trout, have a continuously growing brain. The glial architecture of teleost brain has been intensively studied in the carp, few data exist on trout brain. In this study, using immunoblotting we characterized the topographic distribution of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) in larval and adult rainbow trout brain; and studied by immunohistochemistry the distribution and morphology of GFAP-immunoreactive cell systems in the rainbow trout hindbrain and spinal cord. Immunoblotting yielded a double band with an apparent molecular weight of 50-52 kDa in the spinal cord homogenate in the trout larval and adult stages. In the adult hindbrain and forebrain, our antibody cross reacted also with a second band at a higher molecular weight (90 kDa). Because the forebrain contained this band alone the two brain regions might contain two distinct isoforms. Conversely, the larval total brain homogenate contained the heavy 90 kDa band alone. Hence the heavy band might be a GFAP protein dymer or vimentin/GFAP copolymer reflecting nerve fiber growth and elongation, or the two isoforms might indicate two distinct astroglial cell types as recently proposed in the zebrafish. In sections from trout hindbrain and spinal cord the antibody detected a GFAP-immunoreactive glial fiber system observed in the raphe and in the glial septa separating the nerve tracts. These radial glia fibers thickened toward the pial surface, where they formed glial end feet. The antibody also labeled perivascular glia around blood vessels in the white matter, and the ependymoglial plexus surrounding the ventricular surface in the grey matter. Last, it labeled round astrocytes. The GFAP-immunoreactive glial systems had similar distribution patterns in the adult and larval spinal cord suggesting early differentiation.

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Published
2009-06-29
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How to Cite
Alunni, A., Vaccari, S., & Torcia, S. (2009). Characterization of glial fibrillary acidic protein and astroglial architecture in the brain of a continuously growing fish, the rainbow trout. European Journal of Histochemistry, 49(2), 157-166. https://doi.org/10.4081/940