Glutamic Acid Decarboxylase-positive Neuronal Cell Bodies and Terminals in the Human Cerebellar Cortex
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- Benagiano, V., Virgintino, D., Rizzi, A. et al. Histochem J (2000) 32: 557. doi:10.1023/A:1004106428844
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The distribution of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the human cerebellar cortex was studied using immunohistochemistry for glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), the enzyme that catalyses GABA synthesis. Observations by light microscopy revealed, in all layers of the cerebellar cortex, strong, punctate positivity for GAD, related to putative GABAergic nerve terminals, as well as a diffuse cytoplasmic immunoreactivity within neuronal cell bodies. GAD-positive nerve terminals were found in close relationship with the walls of the cerebellar cortex microvessels. Observations by electron microscopy revealed positive nerve terminals in contact with the astrocyte perivascular sheath of capillaries. GAD immunoreactivity was also detected within astroglial perivascular endfeet and endothelial cells. The findings provide further insights into the GABAergic synapses of the circuitry of the human cerebellar cortex. The detection of ‘vascular’ GAD immunoreactivities suggests that GABAergic mechanisms may regulate cerebellar microvessel function.