We localized calbindin D28K-immunoreactive (IR) neurons in the superior colliculus (SC) of the dog and studied the distribution and effect of enucleation on the distribution of this protein. We also compared this labeling to that of GABA. Calbindin D28K was localized with antibody immunocytochemistry. Calbindin D28K-IR neurons formed three laminar tiers in the SC, one within the lower superficial gray layer (SGL), the second within the upper intermediate gray layers (IGL), and the third within the deep gray layer (DGL). The third tier was not very distinctive when compared with the other two tiers. Calbindin D28K-IR neurons in the SC varied dramatically in morphology and size, and included round/oval, vertical fusiform, stellate, pyriform, and horizontal neurons. Neurons with varicose dendrite were also labeled in the IGL. Enucleation appeared to have no effect on the distribution of calbindin D28K-IR neurons in the contralateral SC. Two-color immunofluorescence revealed that a small percentage (11.20%) of calbindin D28K-IR neurons co-localized with GABA. The current results demonstrate that the patterned distribution of calbindin D28K-IR neurons in the intermediate and deep SC is comparable with other animals, but that the distribution of this protein in the superficial SC is strikingly different from that in previously studied animals. The results also suggest that retinal projection may not control the activity of the expression of calbindin D28K in the dog SC. These results will not only provide valuable knowledge of the basic neurochemical architecture of the dog visual system, but also provide clues for the understanding of the similarities and differences among species.
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