Gap junctional communication and connexin expression in cultured olfactory ensheathing cells

Barnett, S., Thompson, R., Lakatos, A. and Pitts, J. (2001) Gap junctional communication and connexin expression in cultured olfactory ensheathing cells. Journal of Neuroscience Research, 65(6), pp. 520-528. (doi: 10.1002/jnr.1182)

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Abstract

The olfactory ensheathing cell (OEC) is a unique glial cell able to support neurite outgrowth in the CNS throughout life. The OEC has been described as having both Schwann cell-like and astrocyte-like characteristics. The purpose of this study was to compare gap junctional communication and connexin (Cx) expression in cultured olfactory ensheathing cells with both astrocytes and Schwann cells to establish which of these two cells types they most closely resemble. We examined the Cx mRNA profile of OECs, astrocytes, and Schwann cells using primers to Cx26, Cx32, Cx37, Cx43, Cx46, and Cx50. All connexins tested except Cx50 were expressed by all three cell types when initially cultured. However, we observed differences in the levels of expression of Cx32 and Cx26 between astrocytes, Schwann cells, and OECs that became pronounced with time. All three cell types show limited and variable gap junctional communication in culture as assessed by the transfer of microinjected Lucifer yellow. OECs had limited coupling compared with Schwann cells and astrocytes, although the extent of the dye spread through OECs was more comparable to that seen with Schwann cells than astrocytes. Thus, OECs display a profile of Cx expression that more closely resembles the Cx expression of Schwann cells rather than astrocytes

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Barnett, Professor Susan
Authors: Barnett, S., Thompson, R., Lakatos, A., and Pitts, J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:Journal of Neuroscience Research
ISSN:0360-4012

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