Novel cell lines display properties of nociceptive sensory neurons

Proc Biol Sci. 1990 Sep 22;241(1302):187-94. doi: 10.1098/rspb.1990.0084.


Hybrid cell lines derived from neonatal rat dorsal root ganglia neurons fused with the mouse neuroblastoma N18Tg2 exhibit sensory neuron-like properties not displayed by the parental neuroblastoma. These properties include an inward (depolarizing) current with a conductance increase in response to activation of a bradykinin receptor, an inward (depolarizing) current with a conductance increase in response to the sensory excitotoxin capsaicin, the expression of sensory neuropeptides (substance P, CGRP and somatostatin), the expression of phosphatidylinositol-anchored molecules including adhesion molecules of the immunoglobulin superfamily that can be regulated in serum-free culture by nerve growth factor (N-CAM, F-3 and Thy-1), and low permissivity to herpes simplex virus infection. These lines thus provide appropriate models for the study of mechanisms involved in nociceptor activation and the regulation of expression of sensory-neuron specific markers including neuropeptides.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bradykinin / pharmacology
  • Capsaicin / pharmacology
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules, Neuronal / analysis
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Fusion
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Transformation, Viral
  • Electric Conductivity
  • Ganglia, Spinal / physiology
  • Hybrid Cells / cytology
  • Hybrid Cells / physiology*
  • Mice
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Neurons, Afferent / cytology
  • Neurons, Afferent / drug effects
  • Neurons, Afferent / physiology*
  • Neuropeptides / pharmacology
  • Nociceptors / physiology*
  • Receptors, Bradykinin
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter / drug effects
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter / physiology
  • Simplexvirus / genetics


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules, Neuronal
  • Neuropeptides
  • Receptors, Bradykinin
  • Receptors, Neurotransmitter
  • Capsaicin
  • Bradykinin