Immunocytochemistry has been used to study the distribution of the major 180,000-mol wt protein of coated vesicles in rodent cerebellum. An antibody to the coat protein was prepared in rabbits and characterized by immunodiffusion and immunofixation of polyacrylamide gels. At the light microscope level the protein was primarily localized in punctate profiles surrounding Purkinje cells and within the cerebellar glomeruli. At the electron microscope level the punctate distribution was confined to presynaptic terminals of basket and Golgi II neurons as well as mossy fiber terminals of the glomeruli. This label was heaviest on the lattice coat of coated vesicles but, in addition, label was found within the presynaptic axoplasm and along the cytoplasmic surface of the plasmalemma. Coated vesicles in cell somata were labeled as well as the cytosol around groupings of these vesicles. These data suggest that there may be two forms (or more) of coated vesicle protein in neurons, a lattice form associated with coated vesicles and a soluble form associated with the cytoplasmic matrix.

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