The neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptor interacts with peptides that belong to the tachykinin family. NK-1 is inducible in bone marrow (BM) stroma. In neural cells, its expression is high to constitutive. Screening of three cDNA libraries indicated that this different in NK-1 expression in neural and BM cells could not be explained by differences in the cDNA sequence. Analyses the 5' flanking sequence in BM stroma and three neural cell lines indicated that sequence +1/+358 relative to the transcription start (TS) site could account for the differences in NK-1 expression. Particular cytokines could reverse the repressive effects of region +1/+358 in BM stroma. The effects of NF-kappa B and cAMP activators were studied in stromal cells using a dominant negative inhibitor of NF-kappa B (I kappa B) or a repressor of CRE activators (ICERII gamma). The results showed that their effects of these transcription factors depended on the stimulating cytokine. This study provides insight into the tissue-specific differences in the expression of the NK-1 gene.