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Jens Randel Nyengaard

Asymmetric post-natal development of superior cervical ganglion of paca (Agouti paca)

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  • Luciana Maria Bigaram Abrahão, Denmark
  • Jens Randel Nyengaard
  • Tais Harumi de Castro Sasahara, Denmark
  • Sílvio Pires Gomes, Denmark
  • Felipe da Roza Oliveira, Denmark
  • Fernando Vagner Lobo Ladd, Denmark
  • Aliny Antunes Barbosa Lobo Ladd, Denmark
  • Mariana Pereira de Melo, Denmark
  • Márcia Rita Fernandes Machado, Denmark
  • Samanta Rios Melo, Denmark
  • Antonio Augusto Coppi Maciel Ribeiro, Denmark
  • Stereological Research Laboratory
Functional asymmetry has been reported in sympathetic ganglia. Although there are few studies reporting on body side-related morphoquantitative changes in sympathetic ganglion neurons, none of them have used design-based stereological methods to address this issue during post-natal development. We therefore aimed at detecting possible asymmetry-related effects on the quantitative structure of the superior cervical ganglion (SCG) from pacas during ageing, using very precise design-based stereological methods. Forty (twenty left and twenty right) SCG from twenty male pacas were studied at four different ages, i.e. newborn, young, adult and aged animals. By using design-based stereological methods the total volume of ganglion and the total number of mononucleate and binucleate neurons were estimated. Furthermore, the mean perikaryal volume of mononucleate and binucleate neurons was estimated, using the vertical nucleator. The main findings of this study were: (1) the right SCG from aged pacas has more mononucleate and binucleate neurons than the left SCG in all other combinations of body side and animal age, showing the effect of the interaction between asymmetry (right side) and animal age, and (2) right SCG neurons (mono and binucleate) are bigger than the left SCG neurons (mono and binucleate), irrespective of the animal age. This shows, therefore, the exclusive effect of asymmetry (right side). At the time of writing there is still no conclusive explanation for some SCG quantitative changes exclusively assigned to asymmetry (right side) and those assigned to the interaction between asymmetry (right side) and senescence in pacas. We therefore suggest that forthcoming studies should focus on the functional consequences of SCG structural asymmetry during post-natal development. Another interesting investigation would be to examine the interaction between ganglia and their innervation targets using anterograde and retrograde neurotracers. Would differences in the size of target organs explain ganglia structural asymmetry?
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Developmental Neuroscience
Pages (from-to)37-45
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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