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Annica Dahlström

Lecture Title

Review of basic results about the brain’s networks achived through classical and modern neuro-anatomical methods. Prospects for the future.

I will talk about classical neuroanatomical methods, fiber connection tracing with Nauta's silver impregnation method, the histochemical fluorescence method and the mapping of NA, DA and 5-HT paths in the CNS, immunohistochemistry, slow and fast intra-axonal transport, anterograde tracing with isotopes and retrograde tracing with HRP and viruses.


Ph.D. 1966 from the department of Histology at Karolinska Institutet, pupil of Prof. Nils-Åke Hillarp. Inventor, together with Bengt Falck in Lund, of the histochemical fluorescence method for visualization of catecholamines and serotonin. With the use of the fluorescence method Dahlström and Fuxe mapped the central monoaminergic pathwys in the brain (Dahlström A. and Fuxe, K. 1964, 1965, Dahlström, A. et al. 1964, Fuxe 1965). In 1966 I published my thesis on the fast intraaxonal transport of noradrenalin particles in the peripheral autonomic nervous system, using the fluorescence method in combination with quantitative measurements together with Jan Häggendal at the Pharmacology department, Gothenburg University. Chair of the European Society for Neurochemistry 1986-1988, organized CA-meetings, co-editor of volumes dedicated to CA-research, published about 350 original articles in the field of Neuroscience.

Moved to Gothenburg in 1968 after the death of my teacher Hillarp, started a research group at the department of Histology and Neurobiology, finalized my medical education 1973 with licence to work as physician. Full professor at the Histology department, GU, after Prof. Holgen Hydén, in 1984. Pro-vice chancellor of the GU 1992-1995. Retired in 2008. Chair of Soc. Friends of Alexandria in Gothenburg, created a Nobel section in the new library in Alexandria that was donated at the inauguration of the library in 2002.

Recommended Reading

Hillarp, N.Å., Fuxe, K. and Dahlström, A. Demonstration and mapping OF central neurons containing dopamine, noradrenaline and 5.hydroxytryptamine and their reactions to phschopharmaca. Pharmacological Rev. 18:1, 1966

Dahlström, A. and Carlsson, A. Making visible the invisible; Recollections OF the first experiances with thehistochemical florescence method for visualization of tissue monoamines. Discoveries in Pharmacoogy, vol 3, 98-125, 1986.

Fuxe K, Dahlström A, Höistad M, Marcellino D, Jansson A, Rivera A, Diaz-Cabiale Z, Jacobsen K, Tinner-Staines B, Hagman B, Leo G, Staines W, Guidolin D, Kehr J. From the Golgi-Cajal mapping to the transmitter-based characterization of the neuronal networks leading to two modes of brain communication: wiring and volume transmission. Brain Res Rev. 2007 Aug;55(1):17-54.

Dahlstrom A.B. Fast intra-axonal transport: Beginning, development and post-genome advances. Prog Neurobiol. 2010 Feb 9;90(2):119-45.

Mesulam MM. Tracing Neural Connections with Horseradish Peroxidase.IBRO Handbook Series: Methods in the Neurosciences. Chichester; J. Wiley and Sons, 1982; 10-251.

Jansen ASP, Farwell DG, Loewy AD. Specificity of pseudorabies virus as a retrograde marker of sympathetic preganglionic neurons: implication for transneuronal studies. Brain Res. 1993 (617) 103–112.

Emin Oztas, Neuronal tracing
Neuroanatomy, 2003, Volume 2, Pages 2-5.

Li JY, Dahlström A. Axonal transport of neuropeptides: Retrograde tracing study in live cell cultures of rat sympathetic cervical ganglia.
J Neurosci Res. 2007 Sep; 85(12):2538-45.

Reiner A , Veenman CL, Medina L, Jiao Y, Del Mar N, Honig MG.
Pathway tracing using biotinylated dextran amines.
Neurosci Methods. 2000 Nov 15;103(1):23-37.

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