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Wide-field ganglion cells in macaque retinas



To describe the wide-field ganglion cells, they were injected intracellularly with Neurobiotin using an in vitro preparation of macaque retina and labeled with streptavidin-Cy3. The retinas were then labeled with antibodies to choline acetyltransferase and other markers to indicate the depth of the dendrites within the inner plexiform layer (IPL) and analyzed by confocal microscopy. There were eight different subtypes of narrowly unistratified cells that ramified in each of the 5 strata, S1–5, including narrow thorny, large sparse, large moderate, large dense, large radiate, narrow wavy, large very sparse, and fine very sparse. There were four types of broadly stratified cells with dendritic trees extending from S4 to S2. One type resembled the parvocellular giant cell and another the broad thorny type described previously in primates. Another broadly stratified cell was called multi-tufted based on its distinctive dendritic branching pattern. The fourth type had been described previously, but not named; we called it broad wavy. There was a bistratified type with its major arbor in S5, the same level as the blue cone bipolar cell; it resembled the large, bistratified cell with blue ON-yellow OFF responses described recently. Two wide-field ganglion cell types were classified as diffuse because they had dendrites throughout the IPL. One had many small branches and was named thorny diffuse. The second was named smooth diffuse because it had straighter dendrites that lacked these processes. Dendrites of the large moderate and multi-tufted cells cofasciculated with ON-starburst cell dendrites and were, therefore, candidates to be ON- and ON–OFF direction-selective ganglion cells, respectively. We concluded that there are at least 15 morphoplogical types of wide-field ganglion cells in macaque retinas.


Corresponding author

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: David W. Marshak, Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, University of Texas Medical School, PO Box 20708, Houston, TX 77225, USA. E-mail:


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Wide-field ganglion cells in macaque retinas



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