Neurofilament accumulation induced in synapses by leupeptin

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Science  02 Sep 1983:
Vol. 221, Issue 4614, pp. 971-972
DOI: 10.1126/science.6192501


The hypothesis that the usual absence of neurofilaments in synaptic terminals is due to their degradation by the calcium-activated protease present in axoplasm was tested by injecting leupeptin, which inhibits the protease, into the optic tectum of goldfish kept at 15 degrees and at 25 degrees C. The resulting accumulation of neurofilaments in synaptic terminals provides in vivo evidence in support of the hypothesis. The significance of these results and the potential uses of this pharmacological tool are discussed.