Northern blot, immunocytochemistry, and single nerve fiber immunostaining were used to determine the expression of low-affinity nerve growth factor (NGF) receptor (p75NGFR) in the peripheral nervous system of Lewis rats during the course of experimental allergic neuritis (EAN) induced with 100 μg of 'SP26' synthetic peptide, corresponding to residues 53-78 of bovine P2 myelin protein. This severe reversible polyneuropathy, characterized by extensive multifocal demyelination in nerve roots, and axonal degeneration within sciatic nerve, represents a useful tool to investigate Schwann cell gene expression in these different pathological conditions. Our results showed that both p75NGFR mRNA and protein were induced within sciatic nerve by day 18 and 23 after 'SP26' immunization. By this time, however, p75NGFR was not detectable in roots of cauda equina. These data demonstrate that, during EAN induced by immunization with 100 μg of 'SP26', p75NGFR is up-regulated in Schwann cells and in nerve fibers distally along the nerve. This suggests that the induction of the receptor in sciatic nerve during P2-peptide EAN is related to the loss of axonal contact by Schwann cells.
- Axonal degeneration
- Experimental allergic neuritis
- Peripheral nerve
- SP26 P-peptide
ASJC Scopus subject areas