CRYP-2/cPTPRO is a neurite inhibitory repulsive guidance cue for retinal neurons in vitro

Laurie Stepanek, Qi Lun Sun, Jun Wang, Cong Wang, John L. Bixby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Receptor protein tyrosine phosphatases (RPTPs) are implicated as regulators of axon growth and guidance. Genetic deletions in the fly have shown that type III RPTPs are important in axon pathfinding, but nothing is known about their function on a cellular level. Previous experiments in our lab have identified a type III RPTP, CRYP-2/cPTPRO, specifically expressed during the period of axon outgrowth in the chick brain; cPTPRO is expressed in the axons and growth cones of retinal and tectal projection neurons. We constructed a fusion protein containing the extracellular domain of cPTPRO fused to the Fc portion of mouse immunoglobulin G-1, and used it to perform in vitro functional assays. We found that the extracellular domain of cPTPRO is an antiadhesive, neurite inhibitory molecule for retinal neurons. In addition, cPTPRO had potent growth cone collapsing activity in vitro, and locally applied gradients of cPTPRO repelled growing retinal axons. This chemorepulsive effect could be regulated by the level of cGMP in the growth cone. Immunohistochemical examination of the retina indicated that cPTPRO has at least one heterophilic binding partner in the retina. Taken together, our results indicate that cPTPRO may act as a guidance cue for retinal ganglion cells during vertebrate development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)867-878
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 20 2001


  • Axon growth
  • Chemorepulsion
  • Chick embryo
  • Growth cone
  • Tyrosine phosphorylation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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