Korean J Physiol Pharmacol.  2008 Jun;12(3):95-99. 10.4196/kjpp.2008.12.3.95.

Temporal Changes of the Calcium-binding Proteins in the Medial Vestibular Nucleus following Unilateral Labyrinthectomy in Rats

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, Chuncheon Sacred Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Chuncheon 200-704, Korea.
  • 2Department of Physiology, Wonkwang University School of Medicine and Vestibulocochlear Research Center at Wonkwang University, Iksan 570-749, Korea. byungp@wku.ac.kr
  • 3Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, College of Medicine, KyungHee University, Seoul 130-702, Korea.


Calcium (Ca2+) is an intracellular second messenger associated with neuronal plasticity of the central nervous system. The calcium-binding proteins regulate the Ca2+-mediated signals in the cytoplasm and buffer the calcium concentration. This study examined temporal changes of three calcium-binding proteins (calretinin, calbindin and parvalbumin) in the medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) during vestibular compensation after unilateral labyrinthectomy (UL) in rats. Rats underwent UL, and the changes in the expression of these proteins at 2, 6, 12, 24, 48, and 72 h were examined by immunofluorescence staining. The expression levels of all three proteins increased immediately after UL and returned to the control level by 48 h. However, the level of calretinin showed changes different from the other two proteins, being expressed at significantly higher level in the contralateral MVN than in the ipsilateral MVN 2 h after UL, whereas the other two proteins showed similar expression levels in both the ipsilateral and contralateral MVN. These results suggest that the calcium binding proteins have some protective activity against the increased Ca2+ levels in the MVN. In particular, calretinin might be more responsive to neuronal activity than calbindin or parvalbumin.


Calcium-binding proteins; Medial vestibular nuclei; Vestibular compensation
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