Send to

Choose Destination
Dev Biol. 1997 Nov 1;191(1):1-13.

Onset of CNTFRalpha expression and signal transduction during neurogenesis in chick sensory dorsal root ganglia.

Author information

Max-Planck-Institut für Hirnforschung, Deutschordenstrasse 46, Frankfurt, D-60528, Federal Republic of Germany.


The expression of ciliary neurotrophic factor receptor alpha (CNTFRalpha) was investigated in the developing chick dorsal root ganglion (DRG) using affinity-purified anti-CNTFRalpha antibodies. At thoracic levels, CNTFRalpha-immunoreactivity (CNTFRalpha-IR) was first observed at stage 19 (E3) in cells with neuronal morphology. CNTFRalpha-IR is restricted to the neuronal lineage in the DRG throughout development. CNTFRalpha expression precedes that of neuron-specific beta tubulin, Hu antigen, and Q211 antigen, which are markers expressed in developing sensory neurons. [3H]Thymidine-labeling studies showed the onset of CNTFRalpha expression during terminal mitosis of sensory neuron precursors, making CNTFRalpha the earliest known neuronal marker in the DRG. CNTFRalpha-mediated signal transduction was demonstrated in E7 and E11 DRG neuron cultures by CNTF-induced STAT3 phosphorylation. Although low ligand concentrations (5 pM) elicit STAT3 phosphorylation in E7 and E11 DRG neurons, a survival response is only observed in neurons from E11 DRG. This implicates a complex readout mechanism downstream of STAT3 phosphorylation leading to different cellular responses that depend on the age of the DRG neuron. These results argue against a role of CNTFRalpha ligands in the control of early neuron survival but are compatible with other functions in neurogenesis and sensory neuron development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center