Potential regulation by trophic factors of low-affinity NGF receptors in spinal motor neurons

Theo Hago, Mario Rende, Ella Magal, Patricia Burnham, Martin Oudega, Silvio Varon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Developing spinal motor neurons (SMN) express low-affinity nerve growth factor receptors (LNGFR) but not high-affinity transducing NGF receptors. Moreover, SMN are not supported by NGF in vitro. In the normal adult rat most SMN are not LNGFR immunoreactive (LNGFR-IR), but they transiently reexpress LNGFR (though not the high-affinity receptor) after peripheral nerve injury. With a cut lesion of the sciatic nerve (when only a neuroma forms), the number of LNGFR-IR SMN at L4-L6 rapidly increases to a maximum between day 1 and 7 and returns to baseline levels by day 30. After a crush lesion (accompanied by regeneration to the muscle), LNGFR-IR SMN appear in about the same numbers, but they start to disappear 1 week later. We speculate that the similar appearance and differential decline of LNGFR-IR seen after the two types of lesions are regulated by the availability of a common signal such as ciliary neurotrophic factor. The adult SMN model provides a good opportunity to investigate the reexpression of LNGFR after peripheral nerve injury, and more generally, the unknown role and regulation of LNGFR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-352
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Research Bulletin
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Axotomy
  • Ciliary neurotrophic factor
  • Motoneuron
  • Motor neuron
  • Nerve growth factor
  • Nerve growth factor receptor
  • Peripheral nerve injury
  • Regeneration
  • Sciatic nerve
  • Spinal cord

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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