Molecular correlates of laminar differences in the macaque dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus

Karl D Murray, Carol M. Rubin, Edward G. Jones, Leo M. Chalupa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


In anthropoid primates, cells in the magnocellular and parvocellular layers of the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) are distinguished by unique retinal inputs, receptive field properties, and laminar terminations of their axons in visual cortex. To identify genes underlying these phenotypic differences, we screened RNA from magnocellular and parvocellular layers of adult macaque dLGN for layer-specific differences in gene expression. Real-time quantitative reverse transcription-PCR and in situ hybridization were used to confirm gene expression in adult and fetal macaque. Cellular localization of gene expression revealed 11 new layer-specific markers, of which 10 were enriched in magnocellular layers (BRD4, CAV1, EEF1A2, FAM108A1, INα, KCNA1, NEFH, NEFL, PPP2R2C, and SFRP2) and one was enriched in parvocellular and koniocellular layers (TCF7L2). These markers relate to functions involved in development, transcription, and cell signaling, with Wnt/β-catenin and neurofilament pathways figuring prominently. A subset of markers was differentially expressed in the fetal dLGN during a developmental epoch critical for magnocellular and parvocellular pathway formation. These results provide new evidence for the molecular differentiation of magnocellular and parvocellular streams through the primate dLGN.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12010-12022
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number46
StatePublished - Nov 12 2008


  • Axon targeting
  • Cell signaling
  • Cytoarchitecture
  • Plasticity
  • Transcriptome
  • Vision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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