Abstract Immunohistochemistry for parvalbumin, a marker for primary proprioceptors, was performed on the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) of wildtype and knockout mice for Brn-3a at postnatal day 0 and embryonic day 18.5. The DRG contained many parvalbumin-immunoreactive (ir) neurons in wildtype (5.4%) and knockout mice (5.6%). Cell size analysis demonstrated that such neurons were mostly medium-sized to large in these mice. Therefore, it is unlikely that the survival of proprioceptors is dependent upon Brn-3a in the DRG. In the dorsal column and gray matter of the spinal cord of knockout mice, however, parvalbumin-ir nerve fibers were sparse compared to wildtype mice. The number of parvalbumin-ir varicosities around motoneurons decreased in the mutant. Thus, our data suggest that Brn-3a may play an important role in the central projection and terminal formation of DRG proprioceptors in the spinal cord.