The goal of the present study was to characterize the anatomical and neurochemical relationships that the raphe nuclear complex maintains with respect to lateralized and centralized components of the ventricular system. From this investigation, we 1) determined the ipsilateral vs. contralateral distribution of raphe efferents to the ependymal wall of the lateral ventricle, 2) assessed the degree of collateralization of individual ependymal projection neurons to other sites along the ventricular path, 3) compared the topography of raphe neurons that project to the ventricular lining as well as the lumen of the fourth and lateral ventricles, and 4) evaluated the neurochemical identity of raphe neurons that innervate the ventricular system. After tracer injections into the lateral ventricle, labeled cells were distributed evenly on both sides of the midline in the dorsomedial subregion of the intermediate dorsal raphe nucleus. Further rostrally, labeled cells were clustered bilaterally above the medial longitudinal fasciculi and extended into the median raphe nucleus. Injections that involved the ependymal wall of the lateral ventricle resulted in prominent ipsilateral labeling within the dorsal raphe nucleus, just ventral to the cerebral aqueduct. Most of the labeled cells in this latter group had collateral projections to other sites along the ventricular path. Most of the ventricle projection cells contained serotonin but not nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate diaphorase. These findings indicate that the raphe nuclear complex is topographically organized with respect to the ventricular system. Selected subsets of serotoninergic dorsal raphe neurons may influence discrete segments of the ventricular system independently as well as coordinate functions throughout the system through axon collaterals to other sites along the ventricular neuraxis.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||Journal of Comparative Neurology|
|State||Published - Sep 14 1998|
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