Biochemistry and Immunocytochemistry of Choline Acetyltransferase
Choline acetyltransferase (ChAT, acetyl CoA-choline-O-acetyltransferase, EC 188.8.131.52) is the enzyme responsible for catalyzing the synthesis of the important central and peripheral nervous system neurotransmitter, acetylcholine (ACh), and therefore the regulation of ChAT activity is likely to be a controlling factor in availability of ACh for neural transmission. Thus, many studies have been done to establish the relationship of ChAT activity to ACh levels as well as the factors regulating enzyme activity (for reviews see 9, 19, 23). In addition, ChAT may serve as a “phenotypic” marker protein for cells that make and use ACh as a neurotransmitter. Stimulated in large part by this latter possibility, many laboratories have attempted to produce specific antibodies for ChAT that would be useful in immunocytochemical procedures to study “cholinergic” pathways (1, 2, 8, 11, 14, 17, 26).
KeywordsSuperior Cervical Ganglion Scale Line ChAT Activity Preganglionic Sympathetic Neuron Medial Septal Nucleus
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