Effect of serotonin on the development of a rat cerebral cortex tissue culture
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In long-lived tissue cultures of the visual cortex of newborn rats, further differentiation and maturation of the nerve and glial cells, synaptogenesis, and myelinization of the axons are observed. An increase in the number of synapses in the cultures (from the 15th day) is accompanied by a rearrangement of the functional activity of the neurons — conversion of the single activity to periodic activity.
Systematic addition of serotonin to the nutrient medium stimulates the growth and development of the cellular elements of the culture, including proliferation of the glia, differentiation of the neurons, synaptogenesis, and myelinization of the axons.
In cultures grown in a medium with serotonin, the spontaneous activity of the neurons is formed earlier, the relative number of active cells increases, and the type of neuronal activity changes: From the very beginning, neurons with periodic discharges (in the form of flareups) predominate. A tendency for an increase in the number of neurons responding to the introduction of serotonin with an inhibition of their activity is observed, which is close to their reactions in situ.
On the whole, the data obtained are evidence of a stimulating effect of serotonin on the morphofunctional development of a tissue culture of visual cortex of newborn rats.
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