alpha-Gustducin expression in the vomeronasal organ of the mouse

Eur J Neurosci. 1999 Dec;11(12):4473-5. doi: 10.1046/j.1460-9568.1999.00912.x.


The expression of alpha-gustducin, a G protein alpha subunit involved in bitter and sweet taste transduction, was investigated in chemosensory tissues of adult mice. By immunohistochemistry, alpha gustducin was absent in the olfactory neuroepithelium. Instead, alpha gustducin was expressed in a subset of bipolar cells in the proliferative zone of the vomeronasal neuroepithelium as well as in taste buds. Northern blot analysis confirmed the presence of alpha gustducin in isolated vomeronasal organs. Moreover, immunohisto- chemistry revealed the expression of alpha gustducin in scattered cells of the nasal respiratory epithelium. These results show for the first time that alpha gustducin is expressed in chemosensory tissue outside the alimentary tract, suggesting that common transduction mechanisms could be shared by apparently unrelated chemosensory tissues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism
  • Female
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Nasal Mucosa / metabolism
  • Olfactory Mucosa / metabolism
  • Organ Specificity
  • Respiratory Mucosa / metabolism
  • Taste Buds / metabolism
  • Transducin / biosynthesis*
  • Vomeronasal Organ / metabolism*


  • gustducin
  • Transducin