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Immunocytochemistry of GABA in the antennal lobes of the sphinx moth Manduca sexta

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Summary

We have prepared and characterized specific rabbit antisera against γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) coupled covalently to bovine serum albumin and keyhole-limpet hemocyanin. Using these antisera in immunocytochemical staining procedures, we have probed the antennal lobes and their afferent and efferent fiber tracts in the sphinx moth Manduca sexta for GABA-like immunoreactivity in order to map putatively GABAergic central neurons in the central antennal-sensory pathway. About 30% of the neuronal somata in the large lateral group of cell bodies in the antennal lobe are GABA-immunoreactive; cells in the medial and anterior groups of antennal-lobe cells did not exhibit GABA-like immunoreactivity. GABA-immunoreactive neurites had arborizations in all of the glomeruli in the antennal lobe. Double-labeling experiments involving tandem intracellular staining with Lucifer Yellow and immunocytochemical staining for GABA-like immunoreactivity demonstrated that at least some of the GABA-immunoreactive cells in the antennal lobe are amacrine local interneurons. Several fiber tracts that carry axons of antennal-lobe projection neurons exhibited GABA-immunoreactive fibers. Among the possibly GABA-containing projection neurons are several cells, with somata in the lateral group of the antennal lobe, that send their axons directly to the lateral protocerebmm.

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Correspondence to Professor John G. Hildebrand.

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Hoskins, S.G., Homberg, U., Kingan, T.G. et al. Immunocytochemistry of GABA in the antennal lobes of the sphinx moth Manduca sexta . Cell Tissue Res. 244, 243–252 (1986). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00219199

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Key words

  • Antennal lobe
  • GABA-immunocytochemistry
  • Insect nervous system
  • Olfactory system
  • Manduca sexta