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Clin Exp Allergy. 2008 Jul;38(7):1203-11. Epub 2008 Feb 26.
Trigeminal nasal-specific neurons respond to
nerve growth factor with substance-P
Mingomataj E, Dinh QT, Groneberg D, Feleszko W, Schmeck B, Joachim R, Noga O, Nagel S,
Klapp BF, Fischer A.
Department of Pneumology and Immunology, Allergy-Centre-Charité, Otto-Heubner-Centre,
Clinical Research Unit of Allergy, Berlin, Germany.
BACKGROUND: Nerve growth factor (NGF) has been found to induce substance-P
biosynthesis in large-diameter A-fibres vagal airway neurons. However, the effect of NGF on
trigeminal neurons innervating the nasal mucosa of the mouse has not been investigated so far.
OBJECTIVE: NGF has been implicated in allergic diseases by modulating sensory nerves.
Therefore, the present study investigated the effect of NGF on neuropeptides expression such as
substance-P and glutamate in nasal trigeminal neurons.
METHODS: Using neuronal tracing in combination with double labelling
immunohistochemistry the expression of substance-P, glutamate and neurofilament protein 68kDa expression was examined in nasal-specific trigeminal neurons of BALB/c-mice.
RESULTS: The numbers of Fast blue-labelled trigeminal neurons expressing substance-P were
significantly increased after NGF exposure (NGF-treated ganglia: 16.4 +/- 0.6% vs. control: 7.0
+/- 0.4%, P<or=0.001). NGF treatment-induced substance-P biosynthesis in neurofilamentpositive (NGF-treated ganglia: 8.6 +/- 0.2% vs. control: 1.1 +/- 0.2%, P<or=0.001) as well as
neurofilament-negative (NGF-treated ganglia: 7.8 +/- 0.6% vs. control: 5.9 +/- 0.4%, P=0.05)
and non-glutamatergic neurons (NGF-treated ganglia: 11.8 +/- 1.9% vs. control 1.1 +/- 1.0%,
P<or=0.001) 24 h after NGF exposure.
CONCLUSION: Under normal conditions, substance-P was expressed in nasal-specific
neurofilament-negative, glutamatergic and C-fibre neurons. Nasal-specific trigeminal neurons
respond to NGF treatment with substance-P biosynthesis in non-glutamatergic, neurofilamentpositive as well as -negative neurons. These findings suggest that nasal-specific trigeminal
neurons are composed of heterogenous subpopulations in relation to their peptide profiles and
therefore may have different functions in neurogenic airway inflammation.
PMID: 18307524