Neurotrophins regulate sequential changes in neurotrophin receptor expression by sympathetic neuroblasts

Neuron. 1994 Dec;13(6):1359-72. doi: 10.1016/0896-6273(94)90421-9.


We have examined the mechanisms controlling the induction of the two NGF receptors, trkA and p75, in proliferating neuroblasts immuno-isolated from thoracolumbar embryonic sympathetic ganglia. Contrary to prior studies, we find that induction of p75 follows rather than precedes that of trkA; this late induction is consistent with the fact that p75 functions at relatively late stages of sympathetic development. trkA induction is apparently not controlled by a cell-intrinsic mechanism. Rather, this receptor is induced by environmental signals including NT-3, which also acts as an interim survival factor for these neuroblasts. trkA induction by NT-3 is consequent to its promotion of mitotic arrest, as anti-mitotic drugs also efficiently induce trkA. p75 expression is induced in trkA-expressing cells by NGF. Thus, the development of sympathetic neurons involves sequential actions of different neurotrophins, which also regulate the expression of their own and each other's receptors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Separation
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Ganglia, Sympathetic / embryology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Growth Substances / pharmacology
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Mitosis
  • Nerve Growth Factors / pharmacology*
  • Neurotrophin 3
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Rats
  • Receptor, trkA / genetics*
  • Receptors, Nerve Growth Factor / genetics*


  • Growth Substances
  • Nerve Growth Factors
  • Neurotrophin 3
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, Nerve Growth Factor
  • Receptor, trkA