Depolarization differentially affects the secretory and migratory properties of two cell lines of immortalized luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) neurons


: Roberto Maggi, as above.


In this report we studied and compared the biochemical and the electrophysiological characteristics of two cell lines (GT1-7 and GN11) of immortalized mouse LHRH-expressing neurons and the correlation with their maturational stage and migratory activity. In fact, previous results indicated that GN11, but not GT1-7, cells exhibit an elevated motility in vitro. The results show that the two cell lines differ in terms of immunoreactivity for tyrosine hydroxylase and nestin as well as of production and release of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (DOPA) and of intracellular distribution and release of the LHRH. Patch-clamp recordings in GN11 cells, reveal the presence of a single inward rectifier K+ current indicative of an immature neuronal phenotype (neither firing nor electrical activity). In contrast, as known from previous studies, GT1-7 cells show the characteristics of mature LHRH neurons with a high electrical activity characterized by spontaneous firing and excitatory postsynaptic potentials. K+-induced depolarization induces in GT1-7 cells, but not in GN11 cells, a strong increase in the release of LHRH in the culture medium. However, depolarization of GN11 cells significantly decreases their chemomigratory response. In conclusion, these results indicate that GT1-7 and GN11 cells show different biochemical and electrophysiological characteristics and are representative of mature and immature LHRH neurons, respectively. The early stage of maturation of GN11 cells, as well as the low electrical activity detected in these cells, appears to correlate with their migratory activity in vitro.