1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 is a potent inducer of nerve growth factor synthesis

J Neurosci Res. 1991 Jan;28(1):110-4. doi: 10.1002/jnr.490280111.


1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25-(OH)2D3), a metabolically active form of vitamin D, is shown to increase in a dose-dependent manner the cellular pool of NGF mRNA in murine L-929 fibroblasts cultured in a serum-free medium. This effect can be detected as early as 3 hours after 1,25-(OH)2D3 addition and persists for at least 28 hours. It is accompanied by an enhancement of the amount of NGF protein secreted in the culture medium. Since the proto-oncogene c-fos appears involved in the regulation of the NGF gene (Mocchetti et al.: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 86: 3871-895, 1989; Hengerer et al: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 87:3899-3903, 1990), the effect of 1,25-(OH)2D3 on c-fos expression was analysed and compared to that elicited by other inducers of the NGF gene, serum (Wion et al: FEBS Letters 189:37-41, 1985) and phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) (Wion et al: FEBS Letters 262:42-44, 1990). Addition of serum or PMA to L-929 cells was rapidly followed by a transient activation of the c-fos gene. In contrast, c-fos transcripts remained undetected in the presence of 1,25-(OH)2D3. The failure to find any evidence of c-fos expression suggests that 1,25-(OH)2D3 could enhance the pool of NGF mRNA by a mechanism independent of the c-fos pathway.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcitriol / pharmacology*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / biosynthesis
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • L Cells / drug effects
  • L Cells / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Nerve Growth Factors / biosynthesis*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-jun
  • Proto-Oncogenes / drug effects
  • Stimulation, Chemical
  • Transcription Factors / biosynthesis
  • Transcription Factors / genetics


  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Nerve Growth Factors
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-jun
  • Transcription Factors
  • Calcitriol