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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1993 Apr 15;192(1):104-10.

Heterologous expression of the serotonin 5-HT1A receptor in neural and non-neural cell lines.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, University of Chicago, IL 60637.


Stable expression of neuronal receptors in cell lines of neural origin is important for studies of neurotransmitter mediated signal transduction. We have achieved this for the first time in three cell lines which are derived from various tissues of neural origin (hippocampus, HN2; chinese hamster brain explant, NCB-20; rat dorsal root ganglion, F-11). Following electroporation assisted transfer of a construct containing the hippocampal serotonin 5-HT1A receptor (5-HT1AR) DNA, one neural cell line, NG-108-15 (murine neuroblastoma x C6 glioma), failed to express the transfected activity, while three others as well as the non-neural CHO (chinese hamster ovary) cells expressed high levels of the receptor. Upon normalization to coexpressed human beta-hexosaminidase B activity, it was found that the human 5-HT1AR, which is normally concentrated in the hippocampus and at a lesser density in the brain, was expressed at the highest level (15.7 x 10(4) receptors/cell) in the HN2 followed by the NCB-20 (8.3 x 10(4) receptors/cell), F-11 (4.4 x 10(4) receptors/cell) and lastly the non-neuronal CHO (4.2 x 10(4) receptors/cell) cells. Ten-twelve days after passage, a striking increase in expression of the receptor was observed only in the cell lines of neural origin. By contrast, there was no appreciable increase in expression of the transfected 5-HT1AR in the non-neural CHO cells over time. This late increase in expression was eliminated in cells which had been maintained in low glucose (1 g/L) for the first two days after passage, thus establishing a vital role of glucose in expression of the transfected 5-HT1AR in cell lines of neural origin. In all cases the 5-HT1AR was negatively coupled to adenylate cyclase, as evidenced by an agonist mediated decrease in prostaglandin E1 stimulated cyclic AMP levels.

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