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J Insect Physiol. 2010 Aug;56(8):958-65. doi: 10.1016/j.jinsphys.2010.03.031. Epub 2010 Apr 7.

Nitric oxide as a regulator of neuronal motility and regeneration in the locust embryo.

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  • 1Division of Cell Biology, Institute of Physiology, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, D-30173 Hannover, Germany.


Nitric oxide (NO) is known as a gaseous messenger in the nervous system. It plays a role in synaptic plasticity, but also in development and regeneration of nervous systems. We have studied the function of NO and its signaling cascade via cyclic GMP in the locust embryo. Its developing nervous system is well suited for pharmacological manipulations in tissue culture. The components of this signaling pathway are localized by histochemical and immunofluorescence techniques. We have analyzed cellular mechanisms of NO action in three examples: 1. in the peripheral nervous system during antennal pioneer axon outgrowth, 2. in the enteric nervous system during migration of neurons forming the midgut nerve plexus, and 3. in the central nervous system during axonal regeneration of serotonergic neurons after axotomy. In each case, internally released NO or NO-induced cGMP synthesis act as permissive signals for the developmental process. Carbon monoxide (CO), as a second gaseous messenger, modulates enteric neuron migration antagonistic to NO.

Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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