PlexinA4 distribution in the adult rat spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia

Claire Anne Gutekunst*, Eric N. Stewart, Colin K. Franz, Arthur W. English, Robert E. Gross

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


PlexinsA1-A4 participate in class 3 semaphorin signaling as co-receptors to neuropilin 1 and 2, PlexinA4 being the latest member of the PlexinA subfamily to be identified. Little is known about the cellular distribution of PlexinA4 in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion (DRG). Here, immunohistochemical studies using antibodies to PlexinA4 revealed immunolabeling in neurons in both dorsal and, to a greater extent, ventral horns of the spinal cord. Ventral horn PlexinA4 positive neurons exhibited morphology, size, and location consistent with both motor neurons and interneurons. Labeling was found in motor axons exiting through the ventral roots, and more widespread labeling was observed in ascending and descending white matter tracts. Within the DRG, immunostaining was observed in neuronal cell bodies as well as the central and peripheral processes of these cells. PlexinA4 is expressed in the peripheral nervous system where its expression is regulated upon nerve injury. This is the first detailed description of the cellular and subcellular distribution of PlexinA4 in the adult spinal cord and DRG, and it will set the basis for future studies on the potential role of PlexinA4 in regeneration and repair of the adult central and peripheral nervous system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of chemical neuroanatomy
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2012


  • Axon guidance molecule
  • PlexA4
  • PlexinA4
  • PlxnA4
  • Protein distribution
  • Rattus norvegicus
  • Semaphorin
  • Spinal cord injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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