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FEBS Lett. 1992 Nov 2;312(1):66-70.

Neuronal-type nicotinic receptors in human neuroblastoma and small-cell lung carcinoma cell lines.

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Department of Medical Pharmacology, University of Milan, Italy.


A beta subunit of the neuronal nicotinic receptor, sharing 88% homology with the rat beta 4 subunit, has been cloned from a human neuroblastoma cell line. The gene encoding the human beta 4 subunit is expressed in association with the alpha 3 gene in neuroblastoma and small-cell lung carcinoma cell lines. Patch-clamp experiments and radioligand binding assays confirm that these neuroendocrine tumor cell lines express functional neuronal nicotinic receptors. We suggest that these receptors might play a crucial role in the control of neurotransmitter and hormone secretion from neurosecretory human tumors.

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