Sensory nerve endings in the rat oro-facial region labeled by the anterograde and transganglionic transport of horseradish peroxidase: a new method for tracing peripheral nerve fibers

Carl F. Marfurt, Dennis F. Turner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

52 Scopus citations


The purpose of the present investigation is to introduce the enzyme horseradish peroxidase (HRP) for the study of the morphology and peripheral distribution of sensory nerve endings. HRP was injected into the trigeminal ganglion or trigeminal brainstem nuclear complex (TBNC) in separate adult rats. HRP injected into the trigeminal ganglion was taken up by the neuronal perikarya and transported anterogradely in massive amounts to sensory nerve endings in the cornea, vibrissal hair follicles, tooth pulps, and periodontal ligaments. HRP injected into the TBNC was taken up by trigeminal primary afferent fibers that terminated there and transported transganglionically, i.e., past or through the trigeminal ganglion, to peripheral sensory endings. The results of the present study demonstrate for the first time that: (1) anterograde HRP transport is a highly successful method of labeling with an intracellular marker trigeminal sensory endings in a variety of oro-facial tissues, and (2) trigeminal primary sensory neurons possess intra-axonal transport mechanisms by which HRP, and possibly other substances, taken up in the central nervous system may be transported to the periphery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalBrain research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 14 1983



  • anterograde transport
  • cornea
  • horseradish peroxidase
  • peripheral nervous system
  • tooth pulp
  • trigeminal sensory nerve endings

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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

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