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J Neurochem. 1999 Jun;72(6):2264-71.

Bone morphogenetic protein-2 promotes survival and differentiation of striatal GABAergic neurons in the absence of glial cell proliferation.

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  • 1Laboratory of Cell Biology, Gifu Pharmaceutical University, Japan.


We examined the potential neurotrophic effects of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-2 on the survival and differentiation of neurons cultured from the rat developing striatum at embryonic day 16, a period during which the mRNAs for BMP-2 and its receptor subunits (types IA, IB, and II) were detected. BMP-2 exerted potent activity to promote the survival of striatal neurons and increased the number of surviving microtubule-associated protein-2-positive cells by 2.4-fold as compared with the control cultures after 4 days in vitro. Although basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) also showed relatively high activity to promote the survival of striatal neurons, transforming growth factor-beta1, -beta2, and -beta3, glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor, or brain-derived neurotrophic factor promoted their survival weakly. Striatal neurons cultured in the presence of BMP-2 or bFGF possessed extensive neurite outgrowths, the majority of which were GABA-immunoreactive. Inhibition of glial cell proliferation by 5-fluorodeoxyuridine did not affect the capacity of BMP-2 to promote the survival of striatal GABAergic neurons. In contrast, the ability of bFGF to promote the survival of striatal neurons was inhibited significantly by the treatment of cells with 5-fluorodeoxyuridine. All these results suggest that BMP-2 exerts potent neurotrophic effects on the striatal GABAergic neurons in a glial cell-independent manner.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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