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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 805467, 12 pages
Research Article

Cellular and Axonal Diversity in Molecular Layer Heterotopia of the Rat Cerebellar Vermis

1Department of Biomedical Sciences, New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine, Northern Boulevard, P.O. Box 8000, Old Westbury, NY 11568, USA
2Department of Life Sciences, New York Institute of Technology, Old Westbury, NY 11568, USA

Received 30 April 2013; Revised 11 August 2013; Accepted 26 August 2013

Academic Editor: Mark R. Wick

Copyright © 2013 Sarah E. Van Dine et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Molecular layer heterotopia of the cerebellar primary fissure are a characteristic of many rat strains and are hypothesized to result from defect of granule cells exiting the external granule cell layer during cerebellar development. However, the cellular and axonal constituents of these malformations remain poorly understood. In the present report, we use histochemistry and immunocytochemistry to identify neuronal, glial, and axonal classes in molecular layer heterotopia. In particular, we identify parvalbumin-expressing molecular layer interneurons in heterotopia as well as three glial cell types including Bergmann glia, Olig2-expressing oligodendrocytes, and Iba1-expressing microglia. In addition, we document the presence of myelinated, serotonergic, catecholaminergic, and cholinergic axons in heterotopia indicating possible spinal and brainstem afferent projections to heterotopic cells. These findings are relevant toward understanding the mechanisms of normal and abnormal cerebellar development.