Identification and characterization of an aquaporin 1 immunoreactive amacrine-type cell of the mouse retina.J Comp Neurol 2005; 488(3):352-67JC
Using immunocytochemistry, a type of amacrine cell that is immunoreactive for aquaporin 1 was identified in the mouse retina. AQP1 immunoreactivity was found in photoreceptor cells of the outer nuclear layer (ONL) and in a distinct type of amacrine cells of the inner nuclear layer (INL). AQP1-immunoreactive (IR) amacrine cell somata were located in the INL and their processes extended through strata 3 and 4 of the inner plexiform layer (IPL) with thin varicosities. The density of the AQP1-IR amacrine cells increased from 100/mm(2) in the peripheral retina to 350/mm(2) in the central retina. The AQP1-IR amacrine cells comprise 0.5% of the total amacrine cells. The AQP1-IR amacrine cell bodies formed a regular mosaic, which suggested that they represent a single type of amacrine cell. Double labeling with AQP1 and glycine, gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) or GAD(65) antiserum demonstrated that the AQP1-IR amacrine cells expressed GABA or GAD(65) but not glycine. Their synaptic input was primarily from other amacrine cell processes. They also received synaptic inputs from a few cone bipolar cells. The primary synaptic targets were ganglion cells, followed by other amacrine cells and cone bipolar cells. In addition, gap junctions between an AQP1-IR amacrine process and another amacrine process were rarely observed. In summary, a GABAergic amacrine cell type labeled by an antibody against AQP1 was identified in the mouse retina and was found to play a possible role in transferring a certain type of visual information from other amacrine or a few cone bipolar cells primarily to ganglion cells.