Innervation of blood vessels in the vomeronasal complex of the rat

María Valeria Cantó Soler, Angela María Suburo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We have made an immunohistochemical study of the vomeronasal (VN) complex of 12-day-old rats to characterize the innervation of its blood vessels. The VN complex can be subdivided into rostral, middle and caudal segments, each one with a particular vascularization pattern. Several small vessels were associated with the rostral segment, whereas a large venous sinus ran along the middle and caudal segments. Immunostaining for α-smooth muscle actin demonstrated that the muscular sheath was asymmetric, with more cells layers in its lateral than in its medial walls. Nerves were demonstrated with antisera against protein gene product 9.5 (PGP), and against several molecules associated with specific classes of nerve fibers: the C-terminal peptide of neuropeptide Y (CPON), calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), substance P (SP), galanin (GAL), vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) and neuronal nitric oxide synthase (NOS). The latter, was also studied with NADPH-diaphorase. Vascular associated fibers exhibited NOS-, CPON-, GAL-, CGRP-, SP- and VIP-immunoreactivity. Only the vessels of the rostral segment showed VIP-immunoreactive fibers. Each wall of the venous sinus exhibited different types of nerve fibers. CPON-, GAL-, CGRP- and SP- immunoreactive fibers concentrated in the medial wall, whereas NOS- immunoreactive ones concentrated in the lateral wall. This distribution of vascular fibers, plus the presence of sensory fibers exhibiting CGRP-, SP- and GAL-immunoreactivity within the pseudostratified epithelium of the VN tube, would be relevant to understand the operation of the pumping mechanism regulating influx and efflux from the VN tube.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-56
Number of pages10
JournalBrain research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Nov 16 1998


  • Accessory olfactory system
  • Nasopalatine nerve
  • Neuropeptide
  • Nitric oxide synthase
  • Vomeronasal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Innervation of blood vessels in the vomeronasal complex of the rat'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this