In an effort to further characterize vestibulospinal pathways in the gerbil, immunocytochemistry was combined with retrograde identification of neurons. Vestibulospinal neurons were retrogradely labeled following injections of horseradish peroxidase into the cervical cord of anesthetized gerbils. Sections were reacted with nickel acetate-diaminobenzidine for horseradish peroxidase, giving a black reaction product. Sections were incubated in polyclonal antisera to aspartate, incubated in an avidin-biotin-peroxidase procedure, and reacted to give a brown reaction product. Alternatively, fluoro-gold was used as a retrograde tracer and aspartate-like immunoreactivity was demonstrated with avidin conjugated to Texas red. Cells stained with aspartate-like immunoreactivity, were located in all vestibular nuclei. Double-labeled cells were located in the medial nucleus and in the lateral vestibular nucleus where many of the large cells were double labeled.
- Excitatory amino acid
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