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Sci Rep. 2018 Jan 12;8(1):603. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-19093-0.

Phenotypic and Functional Characterization of Peripheral Sensory Neurons derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells.

Author information

1
Centre for Neural Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
2
Department of Psychiatry, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
3
Department of Physiological Sciences, College of Medicine, Alfaisal University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
4
Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
5
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
6
Departments of Audiology and Speech Pathology and Ophthalmology, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
7
Department of Medicine, The University of Melbourne, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.
8
Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
9
Centre for Neural Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia. mdottori@uow.edu.au.
10
Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia. mdottori@uow.edu.au.
11
Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia. mdottori@uow.edu.au.
12
Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute, Centre for Molecular and Medical Bioscience, University of Wollongong, Wollongong, Australia. mdottori@uow.edu.au.

Abstract

The dorsal root ganglia (DRG) consist of a multitude of sensory neuronal subtypes that function to relay sensory stimuli, including temperature, pressure, pain and position to the central nervous system. Our knowledge of DRG sensory neurons have been predominantly driven by animal studies and considerably less is known about the human DRG. Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) are valuable resource to help close this gap. Our previous studies reported an efficient system for deriving neural crest and DRG sensory neurons from hESC. Here we show that this differentiation system gives rise to heterogeneous populations of sensory neuronal subtypes as demonstrated by phenotypic and functional analyses. Furthermore, using microelectrode arrays the maturation rate of the hESC-derived sensory neuronal cultures was monitored over 8 weeks in culture, showing their spontaneous firing activities starting at about 12 days post-differentiation and reaching maximum firing at about 6 weeks. These studies are highly valuable for developing an in vitro platform to study the diversity of sensory neuronal subtypes found within the human DRG.

PMID:
29330377
PMCID:
PMC5766621
DOI:
10.1038/s41598-017-19093-0
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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