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J Neurocytol. 2004 Dec;33(6):591-606. Epub 2005 Oct 11.

Distinct roles for Sema3A, Sema3F, and an unidentified trophic factor in controlling the advance of geniculate axons to gustatory lingual epithelium.

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Department of Biology, Loyola University Chicago, IL 60626, USA.


Geniculate ganglion axons arrive in the lingual mesenchyme on embryonic day 13 (E13), 3-4 days before penetrating fungiform papilla epithelium (E17). This latency may result from chemorepulsion by epithelial Sema3A (Dillon et al. (2004) Journal of Comparative Neurology 470, 13-24), or Sema3F, which we report is also expressed in this epithelium. Sema3A and Sema3F repelled or suppressed geniculate neurite outgrowth, respectively, and these effects were stage and neurotrophic factor dependent. BDNF-stimulated outgrowth is repelled by Sema3A until E17, but insensitive to Sema3F from E16. NT-4-stimulated neurite outgrowth is sensitive to Sema3A and Sema3F through E18, but NT-4 has not been detected in E15-18 tongue. E15-18 tongue explants did not exhibit net chemorepulsion of geniculate neurites, but the ability of tongue explants to support geniculate neurite outgrowth fluctuates: E12-13 (Rochlin et al. (2000), Journal of Comparative Neurology, 422, 579-593) and E17-18 explants promote and may attract geniculate neurites, but stages corresponding to intralingual arborization do not. The E18 trophic and tropic effects were evident even in the presence of BDNF or NT-4, suggesting that some other factor is responsible. Intrinsic neurite outgrowth capability (without exogenous neurotrophic factors) fluctuated similarly: ganglia deteriorated at E15, but exhibited moderate outgrowth at E18. The chemorepulsion studies are consistent with a role for Sema3A, not Sema3F, in restricting geniculate axons from the epithelium until E17, when axons penetrate the epithelium. The transient inability of tongue explants to promote geniculate neurite outgrowth may signify an alternative mechanism for restricting geniculate axons from the epithelium: limiting trophic factor access.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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