Aims – The article presents new data concerning the c-Fos-immunoreactivity technique application to localization of the CNS structures activated by such substances as antidepressants, narcoleptics, or habit-forming substances, as well as to mapping of pathways implicated in pain transmission, anxiety and learning.
Review – C-Fos protein is a product of c-fos gene – a member or the immediate early gene family (IEG). The basal level of c-fos mRNA is hardly detectable in non-stimulated cells, but its expression increases rapidly on administration or various stimuli. Fos immunochemistry offers a mapping tool enabling the investigation or functional neural activity (the so-called a transcriptional activity) in the brain.
Conclusions – Despite certain limitations, the technique of c-Fos protein mapping proved to be helpful in both in neurobiological and neuropharmacological studies investigating the central nervous system functioning in physiological and pathological states.