Each olfactory (antennal) lobe of the moth Manduca sexta contains a single serotonin (5‐HT) immunoreactive neuron whose processes form tufted arbors in the olfactory glomeruli. To extend our present understanding of the intercellular interactions involved in glomerulus development to the level of an individual, identified antennal lobe neuron, we first studied the morphological development of the 5‐HT neuron in the presence and absence of receptor axons. Development of the neuron's glomerular tufts depends, as it does in the case of other multiglomerular neurons, on the presence of receptor axons. Processes of the 5‐HT neuron are excluded from the region in which the initial steps of glomerulus construction occur and thus cannot provide a physical scaffolding on which the array of glomeruli is organized. Because the neuron's processes are present in the antennal lobe neuropil throughout postembryonic development, 5‐HT could provide signals that influence the pattern of development in the lobe. By surgically producing 5‐HT‐depleted antennal lobes, we also tested the importance of 5‐HT in the construction of olfactory glomeruli. Even in the apparent absence of 5‐HT, the glomerular array initiated by the receptor axons was histologically normal, glial cells migrated to form glomerular borders, and receptor axons formed terminal branches in their normal region within each glomerulus. In some cases, 5‐HT‐immunoreactive processes from abnormal sources entered the lobe and formed the tufted intraglomerular branches typical of most antennal lobe neurons, suggesting that local cues strongly influence the branching patterns of developing antennal lobe neurons. © 1995 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- Manduca sexta
- pattern formation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience