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Growth Factors. 2000;18(2):147-55.

A conjugate composed of nerve growth factor coupled to a non-toxic derivative of Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin type A can inhibit neurotransmitter release in vitro.

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Centre for Applied Microbiology and Research, Porton Down, Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK.


Nerve growth factor (NGF) receptor binding, internalisation and transportation of NGF has been identified as a potential route of delivery for other molecules. A derivative of Clostridium botulinum neurotoxin type A (LHN) that retains catalytic activity but has significantly reduced cell-binding capability has been prepared and chemically coupled to NGF. Intact clostridial neurotoxins potently inhibit neurotransmitter release at the neuromuscular junction by proteolysis of specific components of the vesicle docking/fusion complex. Here we report that the NGF-LHN/A conjugate, when applied to PC12 cells, significantly inhibited neurotransmitter release and cleaved the type A toxin substrate. This work represents the successful use of NGF as a targeting moiety for the delivery of a neurotoxin fragment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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