Dynorphin-A immunoreactive terminals on the neuronal somata of rat mesencephalic trigeminal nucleus
Dynorphin-A-like immunoreactivity was investigated in the rat mesencephalic trigeminal nucleus (Mes 5) at the light and electron microscopic levels. Dynorphin-A immunoreactive fibers and puncta, likely representing nerve terminals, were observed throughout rostrocaudal extension of the Mes 5 at the light microscopic level. Within the rostrocaudal extension, more abundant fibers and puncta were localized in the midbrain-pontine junction and pontine areas than in the midbrain area. At the electron microscopic level, dynorphin-A immunoreactive synapses were observed on the somata of Mes 5. Dynorphin-A-like immunoreactivity tended to be restricted to dense-cored vesicles in the synapses. These results suggest that dynorphin-A-containing fiber systems affect mastication through the Mes 5.
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