Cell type and conduction velocity of rat primary sensory neurons with substance p-like immunoreactivity

P. W. McCarthy, S. N. Lawson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

153 Citations (Scopus)


A double labelling immunohistochemical study of rat L4 dorsal root ganglia was made with an anti-substance P antibody and with an antibody, RT97, which specifically labels the light cell population. Substance P-like immunoreactivity was found in 30% of the small dark neurons and 10% of the light neurons. Of the neurons with substance P-like immunoreactivity, 30% were light neurons and 70% were small dark neurons. A study of electrophysiologically characterized neurons in lumbar dorsal root ganglia with dye injection revealed substance P-like immunoreactivity in neurons with conduction velocities ranging from 0.5 to 9.5 m/s. It was seen in 50% of C-fibre neurons, in 20% of Aδ-fibre neurons, and in no Aα/β neurons. Overall, substance-P-like immunoreactivity was found in 10% of A-fibre neurons sampled.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)745-753
Number of pages9
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1989


  • BSS
  • balanced salt solution
  • CV
  • Conduction velocity
  • DRG
  • Dorsal root ganglion
  • FITC
  • fluorescein isothiocyanate
  • N-2-hydroxyethylpiperazine-N'-2-ethanesulphonic acid
  • PBS
  • phosphate-buffered saline
  • SP-LI
  • substance P-like immunoreactivity
  • tetramethyl rhodamine isothiocyanate


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