Effects of early eye removal on the morphology of a multisensory neuron in the chicken optic tectum

Katharina Lischka, Jiamin Yan, Stefan Weigel, Harald Luksch

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung

1 Zitat (Scopus)


The midbrain is a subcortical area involved in central functions such as integrating sensory modalities, movement initiation and bottom-up and top-down attention. In chicken, the midbrain roof is termed optic tectum (TeO) and consists of 15 layers with distinct in- and output regions. Visual input targets the superficial layers, while auditory input terminates in deeper layers. It has been shown that ablation of sensory epithelia leads to changes in the cellular patterning and structural organization of the sensory pathways. For the tectum, ablation of the eye anlagen was shown to affect retinorecipient neurons. While the gross morphology remained intact after enucleation, the shape of dendritic endings was changed presumably due to missing presynaptic input during synaptic pruning. We investigated the effect of deafferentation in a multisensory cell type, the Shepherd's crook neuron (SCN) in the TeO. SCNs have distinct dendritic branches in retinorecipient layers (superficial layers 1 to 5 and 7) and in layers where auditory input terminates. To assess whether removal of a single sensory input only affects the dendrites recipient for that input, we removed the eye anlagen and retrogradely labeled SCNs later in embryogenesis to visualize the morphology in lesioned and non-lesioned embryos. We found no changes in the gross morphology or in the basal dendrites, but an altered growth of the fine structures at the apical dendrite of SCNs in the retinorecipient layers. Our data indicate that the neuronal morphology of SCNs is mostly predefined before retinal innervation affect the fine structure.

Seiten (von - bis)9-14
FachzeitschriftBrain Research
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 15 Juli 2018


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