Distribution of hippocampal mossy fibers in the rat. An experimental study with silver impregnation methods



The paper deals with the distribution of the axons that arise in the fascia dentata and go to the hippocampus proper. lesions were placed in the fascia dentata and degenerating mossy fibers were mapped by silver impregnation, mostly according to the method of Fink and Heimer ('67). The fascia dentata and the layer of mossy fibers in the rat form a curved and twisted structure extending from the level of the posterior aspect of the septum to the temporal tip. The horizontal serial sections used for this study were, therefore, in part interpreted by means of three-dimensional reconstructions.

Mossy fibers do not enter the fimbria at any point. Degenerating fibers can be traced to the limit between regio superior (CA 1) and regio inferior. This dentato-hippocampal connection displays a pattern of precise localization, each level of fascia dentata projecting onto a restricted level of regio inferior. The bands of degenerated mossy fibers produced by lesions in the fascia dentata were largely oriented in the transverse direction (slightly in a temporal direction) and were somewhat wider distally than at the origin from the hilus. Very narrow bands were seen in a few animals with particularly small lesions.