Age-associated changes in the monoaminergic innervation of rat lumbosacral spinal cord

Author(s): Ranson RN, Dodds AL, Smith MJ, Santer RM, Watson AH


The effects of ageing on the innervation patterns of lumbosacral spinal nuclei involved in controlling lower urinary tract functions, including micturition, were studied using immunohistochemistry for serotonin (5-HT) and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in male Wistar rats of 3 and 24 months. Quantitative image analysis revealed significant age-associated declines in the innervation of most regions including the intermediolateral cell nucleus, sacral parasympathetic nucleus, dorsal grey commissure and in the ventral horn including the dorsolateral nucleus which in the rat is one of the component nuclei homologous to Onuf's nucleus in man. Notable exceptions to this generalised decline were observed in the 5-HT innervation of the sacral parasympathetic nucleus, which was maintained, and in the region of the dorsolateral motor nucleus where TH-like immunoreactivity did not significantly decline. These results suggest that the changes in micturition characteristics observed in aged rats may in part be a consequence of the alterations in, and decline of, aminergic inputs to both autonomic and somatic spinal nuclei associated with bladder function.

Similar Articles

Neuroanatomy of the striated muscular anal continence mechanism

Author(s): Matzel KE, Schmidt RA, Tanagho EA

Multi-MUP EMG analysis--a two year experience in daily clinical work

Author(s): Stålberg E, Falck B, Sonoo M, Stålberg S, Aström M

Standardization of anal sphincter EMG: technique of needle examination

Author(s): Podnar S, Rodi Z, Lukanovic A, Trsinar B, Vodusek DB

Injury to innervation of pelvic floor sphincter musculature in childbirth

Author(s): Snooks SJ, Setchell M, Swash M, Henry MM

Pelvic floor damage and childbirth: a neurophysiological study

Author(s): Allen RE, Hosker GL, Smith AR, Warrell DW

Anal-sphincter disruption during vaginal delivery

Author(s): Sultan AH, Kamm MA, Hudson CN, Thomas JM, Bartram CI

Anal function: effect of pregnancy and delivery

Author(s): Chaliha C, Sultan AH, Bland JM, Monga AK, Stanton SL

Standardization of anal sphincter electromyography: normative data

Author(s): Podnar S, Vodusek DB, Stâlberg E