Transplantation of reaggregates of embryonic neural retinae to neonatal rat brain: Differentiation and formation of connections

Linda Kirschen McLoon, Raymond D. Lund, Steven C. McLoon

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39 Scopus citations


Embryonic day 14 neural retinae were dissociated into single cells and reaggregated prior to transplantation over the superior colliculi of newborn rats. One month after transplantation, the brains of the host rats were examined for transplant differentiation and the formation of projections from the transplant to the host brain. All reaggregated retinal transplants differentiated in the host brain, showing normal lamination and cellular morphology. Electron microscopic examination demonstrated normal synaptology within the transplanted retinal neuropil. Horseradish peroxidase injections into the host superior colliculus retrogradely filled cells within the transplant. These cells were found in the lamina corresponding to the ganglion cell layer and displayed a morphology characteristic of normal ganglion cells. Lesions of the transplants confirmed the projection of the reaggregated retinal transplants to superior colliculus. Degeneration was also traced into a number of other nuclei that are normally retinorecipient. The presence of degenerating synaptic terminals resembling those seen after eye removal in control rats was confirmed by electron microscopic examination. It appears that despite disruption of initial cell‐cell associations early in retinal development and prior to transplantation, the reaggregated transplants retain the ability to differentiate and form appropriate connections with the host brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-189
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Comparative Neurology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 20 1982

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