Anatomy and Embryology

, Volume 172, Issue 3, pp 255–264 | Cite as

The ontogenetic development of serotonin (5-HT1) receptors in various cortical regions of the rat brain

  • Karl Zilles
  • Axel Schleicher
  • Thomas Glaser
  • Jörg Traber
  • Marion Rath


The distribution of serotonin (5-HT1) receptors in various cortical regions of the rat brain has been examined during ontogenesis by quantitative autoradiography.

An increase in binding site density between the first postnatal day and adult age was observed and could be approximated by a sigmoid shaped (logistic) growth curve. A marked heterochrony in the increase of binding site density is found in the 13 analyzed cortical regions. Binding sites develop earlier in neocortex than in allocortical areas. Fifty pereent of the binding site density of adult age is reached in the motor cortex at the 9th postnatal day, followed by the primary somatosensory cortex one day later, by the medial prefrontal cortex on the 12th day, by the fascia dentata on the 14th day and by the CA1-region on the 20th day. A detailed analysis of the frontal, medial prefrontal and hippocampal regions also shows a heterochrony within these regions. Adult values of binding site densities are also reached at different ages in the various cortical regions. The highest receptor densities were observed in the dorsal subiculum, the lowest in the primary somatosensory cortex.

Key words

Serotonin receptors Cerebral cortex Ontogenesis Rat Quantitative autoradiography 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karl Zilles
    • 1
  • Axel Schleicher
    • 1
  • Thomas Glaser
    • 2
  • Jörg Traber
    • 2
  • Marion Rath
    • 2
  1. 1.Anatomical InstituteUniversity KölnKölnFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.Neurobiology DepartmentTroponwerkeKölnFederal Republic of Germany

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