Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract The localistion and distribution of the cholinergic, serotoninergic and peptidergic components of the nervous system of the frog-lung flukeHaplometra cylindracea have been determined by the application of standard enzyme cytochemical and immunocytochemical techniques to cryostat sections and whole-mount preparations. Cholinesterase activity (ChE), as indicative of acetylcholine, has been demonstrated cytochemically in the CNS and PNS; however, the anterior ganglia were notably unreactive. The occurrence of serotonin was examined by an indirect immunofluorescence technique, and immunoreactivity (IR) was demonstrable in small, paired anterior ganglia and in fine nerve fibres associated with the somatic muscle, cirrus and gonopore. The peptidergic protion of the nervous system was investigated using antisera to 17 mammalian regulatory peptides and the invertebrate peptide FMRFamide, and was visualised by both indirect immunofluorescence and confocal scanning laser microscopy. Positive immunostaining occurred with antisera raised against pancreatic polypeptide (PP), peptide tyrosine tyrosine (PYY), substance P (SP), peptide histidine isoleucine (PHI) and FMRFamide. Immunoreactivity to PP, PYY and FMRFamide was widespread throughout the nervous system and was evident in large, paired anterior ganglia, the dorsal commissure, main nerve tracts and the extensive array of small fibres that constitute the PNS. In contrast, the distribution of nerves immunoreactive to SP and PHI was less apparent, with PHI-IR occurring exclusively within the fibrous neuropile of the ganglia and in fibres of the ventral nerve cord. Results are discussed with respect to the distribution of the various neurochemical elements and their roles as putative neurotransmitters and/or regulatory molecules.
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