Brain Structure and Function

, Volume 216, Issue 3, pp 183–199

Cytoarchitecture of the mouse neocortex revealed by the low-molecular-weight neurofilament protein subunit

Authors

  • Melissa Paulussen
    • Laboratory of Neuroplasticity and NeuroproteomicsKatholieke Universiteit Leuven
  • Sandy Jacobs
    • Laboratory of Neuroplasticity and NeuroproteomicsKatholieke Universiteit Leuven
  • Estelle Van der Gucht
    • Laboratory of Neuroplasticity and NeuroproteomicsKatholieke Universiteit Leuven
  • Patrick R. Hof
    • Department of NeuroscienceMount Sinai School of Medicine
    • Laboratory of Neuroplasticity and NeuroproteomicsKatholieke Universiteit Leuven
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00429-011-0311-3

Cite this article as:
Paulussen, M., Jacobs, S., Van der Gucht, E. et al. Brain Struct Funct (2011) 216: 183. doi:10.1007/s00429-011-0311-3

Abstract

The expression patterns of the medium- and high-molecular-weight subunits of the neurofilament protein triplet have been extensively studied in several neuroanatomical studies. In the present study, we report the use of the low-molecular-weight neurofilament protein subunit (NF-L) as a reliable marker within the neurofilament protein family to reveal the regional architecture of mammalian neocortex. We document clearly its usefulness in anatomical parcellation studies and report unique expression patterns of NF-L throughout the mouse neocortex. NF-L was most abundant in the somatosensory cortex, the lateral secondary visual area, the granular insular cortex, and the motor cortex. Low NF-L staining intensity was observed in the agranular insular cortex, the prelimbic and infralimbic cortex, the anterior cingulate cortex, the visual rostromedial areas, the temporal association cortex, the ectorhinal cortex, and the lateral entorhinal cortex. NF-L immunoreactivity was present in the perikarya, dendrites, and proximal segment of axons primarily of pyramidal neurons, and was mainly located in layers II and III, and to a lesser extent in layers V and VI. Interestingly, Black-Gold myelin staining confirmed a close correlation between NF-L immunoreactivity and myelination patterns. The characteristic and distinctive distribution and laminar expression profiles of NF-L make it an excellent tool to assess accurately topographical boundaries among neocortical areas as illustrated herein in the adult mouse brain.

Keywords

ImmunocytochemistryCytoarchitectureMouseMyelinCortical mapping

Abbreviations

ACd

Dorsal anterior cingulate cortex

ACv

Ventral anterior cingulate cortex

AC/RS

Anterior cingulate/retrosplenial cortex

ac

Anterior commissure

AI

Agranular insular cortex

AId

Dorsal agranular insular cortex

AIv

Ventral agranular insular cortex

AIp

Posterior agranular insular cortex

Au1

Primary auditory cortex

Aud

Dorsal auditory cortex

Auv

Ventral auditory cortex

DI

Dysgranular insular cortex

DLO

Dorsolateral orbital cortex

Ect

Ectorhinal cortex

ec

External capsule

GI

Granular insular cortex

IL

Infralimbic cortex

LEnt

Lateral entorhinal cortex

LO

Lateral orbital cortex

lo

Lateral olfactory tract

M1

Primary motor cortex

M2

Secondary motor cortex

MEnt

Medial entorhinal cortex

MO

Medial orbital cortex

NF-L

Neurofilament protein low molecular weight subunnit

Pir

Piriform cortex

Prh

Perirhinal cortex

PL

Prelimbic cortex

RM1

Rostromedial visual area 1

RM2

Rostromedial visual area 2

RM3–4

Rostromedial visual area 3–4

RSA

Agranular retrosplenial cortex

RSG

Granular retrosplenial cortex

S1

Primary somatosensory cortex

S1BF

Barrel field in S1

S2

Secondary somatosensory cortex

TeA

Temporal association area

V1

Primary visual cortex

V2L

Lateral secondary visual cortex

V2M

Medial secondary visual cortex

VO

Ventral orbital cortex

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011