Purinergic Signalling

, Volume 15, Issue 3, pp 327–342 | Cite as

Adenosine receptor expression in the adult zebrafish retina

  • Stephanie L. GrilloEmail author
  • Dillon S. McDevitt
  • Matthew G. Voas
  • Amanda S. Khan
  • Michael A. Grillo
  • Salvatore L. StellaJr
Original Article


Adenosine is an endogenous nucleoside in the central nervous system that acts on adenosine receptors. These are G protein-coupled receptors that have four known subtypes: A1, A2A, A2B, and A3 receptors. In the present study, we aimed to map the location of the adenosine receptor subtypes in adult wild-type zebrafish retina using in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. A1R, A2AR, and A2BR mRNA were detected in the ganglion cell layer (GCL), the inner nuclear layer (INL), the outer nuclear layer (ONL), and the outer segment (OS). A3R mRNA was detected in the GCL, ONL, and OS. A1R-immunoreactivity was expressed as puncta in the INL and in the outer plexiform layer (OPL). A1Rs were located within the cone pedicle and contiguous to horizontal cell tips in the OPL. A2AR-immunoreactivity was expressed as puncta in the GCL, inner plexiform layer (IPL), INL, and outer retina. A2AR puncta in the outer retina were situated around the ellipsoids and nuclei of cones, and weakly around the rod nuclei. A1Rs and A2ARs were clustered around ON cone bipolar cell terminals and present in the OFF lamina of the INL but were not expressed on mixed rod/cone response bipolar cell terminals. A2BR-immunoreactivity was mainly localized to the Müller cells, while A3Rs were found to be expressed in retinal ganglion cells of the GCL, INL, ONL, and OS. In summary, all four adenosine receptor subtypes were localized in the zebrafish retina and are in agreement with expression patterns shown in retinas from other species.


G protein-coupled receptors Müller cells Photoreceptors Retinal ganglion cells Bipolar cells 



The authors wish to thank Scott Chartrand for providing technical advice and James Connor for the use of his Amersham Imager 600.

Funding information

This research was supported by Start-up funds provided by Penn State University, College of Medicine, and a grant from the PA Tobacco Settlement Funds (Commonwealth of Pennsylvania) to SLS.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest

Stephanie L. Grillo declares that she has no conflict of interest.

Dillon McDevitt declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Matthew G. Voas declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Amanda Khan declares that she has no conflict of interest.

Michael A. Grillo declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Salvatore L. Stella Jr declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All animals were cared for according to institutional guidelines prescribed by the Penn State Hershey IACUC Committee, and the National Eye Institute.


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neural and Behavioral SciencesPenn State College of MedicineHersheyUSA
  2. 2.Department of OphthalmologyPenn State College of MedicineHersheyUSA
  3. 3.Department of Basic Medical ScienceUniversity of Missouri-Kansas City School of MedicineKansas CityUSA

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