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Neurosci Lett. 1989 Mar 13;98(1):8-12.

Satellite cells surrounding axotomised rat dorsal root ganglion cells increase expression of a GFAP-like protein.

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Department of Anatomy and Developmental Biology, University College, London, U.K.


Segments of sciatic nerve, 8-10 mm long, were removed from the left thigh of adult Sprague-Dawley rats. One day to 6 weeks after operation the animals were killed and the 4th and 5th lumbar dorsal root ganglia dissected out on both the operated and the unoperated side. A monoclonal and two polyclonal antibodies to glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) were used to localize GFAP-like molecules in cryostat sections of the ganglia by means of indirect immunofluorescence. Expression of GFAP in satellite cells, demonstrable by the binding of polyclonal antibodies, had increased noticeably by three days post operation and remained at a high level throughout the remaining period of the experiment. Whereas on the unoperated side only about 15% of the neurons in the ganglia were surrounded by GFAP-positive satellite cells, on the operated side about 88% of the neurons were surrounded by GFAP-positive cells. Satellite cells could not be labelled with the monoclonal antibodies to GFAP.

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