Differentiation of neuroblastoma cells correlates with an altered splicing pattern of tau RNA

FEBS Lett. 1992 Mar 24;299(1):10-4. doi: 10.1016/0014-5793(92)80088-x.


Morphological differentiation of N2A neuroblastoma cells is associated with an altered splicing of the gene of the microtubule-associated protein, tau. Two populations of RNA (coding for tau proteins containing three or four tubulin-binding motifs) are present in a similar proportion in undifferentiated neuroblastoma cells while in differentiated cells the proportion is changed in favour of that population coding for tau protein containing four tubulin-binding motifs. An increase in a high molecular weight tau isoforms correlates with the increase in the RNA population coding for four tubulin-binding motifs. A possible consequence of expressing a higher proportion of the tau protein containing four tubulin-binding motifs could be an increase in microtubule stability of differentiated neuroblastoma cells.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Immunoblotting
  • Mice
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Neurons / cytology*
  • Neurons / metabolism
  • RNA Splicing*
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Tubulin / metabolism
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • tau Proteins / genetics*


  • Tubulin
  • tau Proteins