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      The discovery of central monoamine neurons gave volume transmission to the wired brain

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      Progress in Neurobiology

      Elsevier BV

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          The dawn of chemical neuroanatomy in the CNS came with the discovery and mapping of the central dopamine, noradrenaline and 5-hydroxytryptamine neurons by means of transmitter histochemistry using the Falck-Hillarp formaldehyde fluorescence technique in the early 1960s. Our mapping of the central monoamine neurons was continued and further established with tyrosine hydroxylase, dopa decarboxylase and dopamine-beta-hydroxylase immunohistochemistry in collaboration with Menek Goldstein and Tomas Hökfelt. During recent years an evolutionary constraint in the nuclear parcellation of the DA, NA and 5-HT neurons was demonstrated in the order Rodentia and other mammals. The abundant existence of global monoamine varicose nerve terminal networks synthesizing, storing and releasing monoamines in various parts of the CNS, including the release of DA by tubero-infundibular DA neurons as a prolactin inhibitory factor from the external layer of the median eminence into the portal vessels and the appearance of extraneuronal DA fluorescence after, e.g., treatment with amphetamine in nialamide pretreated rats (Falck-Hillarp technique) were also remarkable observations. These observations and others like the discovery of transmitter-receptor mismatches opened up the possibility that monoamines were modulating the wired brain, built up mainly by glutamate and GABA neurons, through diffusion and flow in the extracellular fluid of the extracellular space and in the CSF. This transmission also involved long-distance channels along myelinated fibers and blood vessels and was called volume transmission (VT). The extracellular space (ECS), filled with a 3D matrix, plays a fundamental role in this communication. Energy gradients for signal migration in the ECS are produced via concentration, temperature and pressure gradients, the latter two allowing a flow of the ECF and CSF carrying the VT signals. The differential properties of the wiring transmission (WT) and VT circuits and communication channels will be discussed as well as the role of neurosteroids and oxytocin receptors in volume transmission leading to a new understanding of the integrative actions of neuronal-glial networks. The role of tunneling nanotubes with mitochondrial transfer in CNS inter alia as part of neuron-glia interactions will also be introduced representing a novel type of wiring transmission. The impact of the technicolour approach to the connectome for the future characterization of the wired networks of the brain is emphasized. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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          Progress in Neurobiology
          Progress in Neurobiology
          Elsevier BV
          February 2010
          February 2010
          : 90
          : 2
          : 82-100
          © 2010


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