UNIT 3.19 Rodent Sensory Neuron Culture and Analysis

  1. Alison K. Hall

Published Online: 1 AUG 2006

DOI: 10.1002/0471142301.ns0319s36

Current Protocols in Neuroscience

Current Protocols in Neuroscience

How to Cite

Hall, A. K. 2006. Rodent Sensory Neuron Culture and Analysis. Current Protocols in Neuroscience. 36:3.19:3.19.1–3.19.13.

Author Information

  1. Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 AUG 2006
  2. Published Print: JUL 2006


Sensory neurons have proven very useful for analysis of neuronal differentiation in vivo and in vitro. Their utility for in vitro work is based on the fact that sensory neurons are relatively easy to isolate in large numbers and are amenable to manipulations in culture. Lumbar ganglia are usually used because their location in the caudal nervous system means they are the least differentiated at any developmental stage, allowing the analysis of relatively undifferentiated cells. Rodent sensory ganglia from embryonic to adult stages can be dissected effectively and maintained in serum-free medium or in coculture with other cells or factors. This unit describes generation of embryonic rat lumbar dorsal root ganglia (DRG) cultures, which form an important model system for investigating the cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate neuronal differentiation. Adult DRG can also be successfully cultured, with a few modifications of the general protocol.


  • sensory neuron;
  • differentiation;
  • dorsal root ganglion