Retinal projections in the African cichlid fish, Haplochromis burtoni

Fernald, R.D.

Journal of Comparative Neurology 206(4): 379-389


ISSN/ISBN: 0021-9967
PMID: 7096633
DOI: 10.1002/cne.902060406
Accession: 006334977

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The retinal projections of the African cichlid fish, Haplochromis burtoni, have been traced by two different methods. Following unilateral enucleation, a modified Nauta technique was used to demonstrate degenerating axons and terminals. Some degeneration was found after 5 days but optimal survival time was 20-25 days. Orthograde transport of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) into the cut optic nerve also was used to examine retinal fiber distribution in the brain. The optic nerve is completely crossed and gives rise to two major tracts, the tractus opticus dorsomedialis and the tractus opticus ventrolateralis, as well as minor fascicles. Projections were found in the suprachiasmatic nucleus, ventral thalamus, dorsal thalamus, the pretectal complex, and the tectum opticum. The optic tectum is large and laminated and the great majority of the optic fibers terminate there. Degeneration methods revealed projections in the tectum to the stratum opticum, stratum griseum et fibrosum superficiale, and stratum album centrale. HRP staining confirmed these projections and revealed another projection to the stratum griseum centrale.

Retinal projections in the African cichlid fish, Haplochromis burtoni