PubMed 12019325

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Kv2.1

Title: Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor is a survival factor for isolectin B4-positive, but not vanilloid receptor 1-positive, neurons in the mouse.

Authors: Melissa Zwick, Brian M Davis, C Jeffrey Woodbury, John N Burkett, H Richard Koerber, James F Simpson, Kathryn M Albers

Journal, date & volume: J. Neurosci., 2002 May 15 , 22, 4057-65

PubMed link:

Most, if not all, nociceptor sensory neurons are dependent on nerve growth factor (NGF) during early embryonic development. A large subpopulation of these sensory neurons loses NGF dependency between embryonic day 16 and postnatal day 14 and become responsive to glial cell line-derived growth factor (GDNF), a member of the transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) family. To examine the survival and phenotypic effects of GDNF on sensory neurons in vivo, we generated transgenic mice that overexpress GDNF in the skin. GDNF-overexpresser mice had increased numbers of small unmyelinated sensory neurons that express the tyrosine kinase receptor Ret and bind the plant isolectin B4 (IB4). Surprisingly, in wild-type and transgenic mice, few ( approximately 2%) IB4-positive neurons expressed the vanilloid receptor VR1, a heat-sensitive receptor expressed by many IB4-positive neurons of the rat. Thus, in mouse, GDNF-dependent IB4-positive neurons must use a non-VR1 heat receptor. In addition, the behavior of GDNF-overexpresser animals to noxious heat or mechanical stimuli was indistinguishable from wild-type animals, indicating that, on a behavioral level, peripherally applied GDNF does not alter the sensitivity of the somatosensory system.