Glutamate Receptor Subunit Immunoreactivity in Neurons of the Rat Rostral Ventrolateral Medulla

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Conference Proceeding

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Immunohistochemical studies were conducted to assess the subunits of ionotropic and metabotropic glutamate receptor present in the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) of the rat. Double labeling the medullary sections with polyclonal GluR1, GluR2/3, GluR4, NMDAR1, NMDAR2A/B, mGluR1α, and mGluR2/3 antiserum and monoclonal tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) antiserum revealed nearly all TH immunoreactive (irTH) cells and many TH-negative neurons were immunoreactive to GluR2/3 (irGluR2/3), NMDAR1 (irNMDAR1), and NMDAR2A/B (irNMDAR2A/B). A few RVLM neurons were immunoreactive to GluR1 (irGluR1) and GluR4 (irGluR4), but they were generally TH-negative. Immunoreactivity to mGluR1α (irmGluR1α) appeared to be localized exclusively to fiber-like elements in the RVLM area. Our results show that neurons in the RVLM, including irTH, are endowed mainly with GluR2/3 and NMDAR1 or NMDAR2A/B ionotropic receptor subunits, and that irmGluR1α splice variant appears to be located on nerve fibers ramifying within the RVLM. Moreover, TH-negative neurons in the RVLM appear to bear similar subunits of ionotropic glutamate receptors.