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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2009 May 8;382(3):577-82. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2009.03.073. Epub 2009 Mar 18.

Neuroplasticity and neuroprotection in enteric neurons: role of epithelial cells.

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  • 1INSERM, U913, 1, Place Alexis Ricordeau - 3HNB, Nantes F-44093, France.


Neurons of enteric nervous system (ENS) regulate intestinal epithelial cells (IEC) functions but whether IEC can impact upon the neurochemical coding and survival of enteric neurons remain unknown. Neuro-epithelial interactions were studied using a coculture model composed of IEC lines and primary culture of rat ENS or human neuroblastoma cells (SH-SY5Y). Neurochemical coding of enteric neurons was analysed by immunohistochemistry and quantitative PCR. Neuroprotective effects of IEC were tested by measuring neuron specific enolase (NSE) release or cell permeability to 7-amino-actinomycin D (7-AAD). Following coculture with IEC, the percentage of VIP-immunoreactive (IR) neurons but not NOS-IR and VIP mRNA expression were significantly increased. IEC significantly reduced dopamine-induced NSE release and 7-AAD permeability in culture of ENS and SH-SY5Y, respectively. Finally, we showed that NGF had neuroprotective effects but reduced VIP expression in enteric neurons. In conclusion, our study identified a novel role for IEC in the regulation of enteric neuronal properties.

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