Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 286, Issue 3, pp 325-336

First online:

Differential expression of three glutamate transporter subtypes in the rat retina

  • T. RauenAffiliated withMax-Planck-Institut für Hirnforschung, Abteilung Neuroanatomie, Deutschordenstrasse 46, D-60528 Frankfurt/M., Germany
  • , J. D. RothsteinAffiliated withJohns Hopkins University, Department of Neurology, Baltimore, MD 21287-7519, USA
  • , H. WässleAffiliated withMax-Planck-Institut für Hirnforschung, Abteilung Neuroanatomie, Deutschordenstrasse 46, D-60528 Frankfurt/M., Germany

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Abstract.

The immunocytochemical distribution of the three excitatory amino acid transporter subtypes GLT-1, GLAST-1 and EAAC-1 was studied in the rat retina using antibodies raised against synthetic peptides corresponding to the C-terminus of each transporter subtype (Rothstein et al. 1994). A comparative immunoblot analysis of rat cortex, cerebellum and retina membrane proteins suggested the following rank order of glutamate transporter subtype expression in retina: GLAST-1≥EAAC-1>GLT-1. GLAST-1 immunoreactivity was seen in Müller cells and astrocytes. EAAC-1 was found in horizontal cells, in amacrine and displaced amacrine cells, and in ganglion cells. A minority of bipolar cells also expressed EAAC-1. GLT-1 was preferentially expressed by different types of bipolar cells; however, it was also found in some amacrine cells. The functional role of this differential distribution of glutamate transporters in the retina is discussed.

Key words: Retina Glutamate transporter subtypes (GLT-1 EAAC-1 GLAST-1) Expression Anti-peptide antibodies Immunohistochemistry Glutamatergic pathways Rat (Wistar Brown Norway)