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Expression of Human Neurofilament-light Transgene in Mouse Neurons Transplanted into the Brain of Adult Rats

Authors

  • Manuel Vidal-Sanz,

    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
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  • Maria P. Villegas-Pérez,

    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
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  • David A. Carter,

    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
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  • Jean-Pierre Julien,

    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
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  • Alan Peterson,

    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
    2. Ludwig Institute, 687 Pine Avenue W., Montreal, P.Q. H3A 1A1, Canada
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  • Albert J. Aguayo

    Corresponding author
    1. Centre for Research in Neuroscience, McGill University, The Montreal General Hospital Research Institute, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, P.Q. H3G 1A4, Canada
      A. J. Aguayo, as above
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A. J. Aguayo, as above

Abstract

To investigate the expression of nerve cell-specific transgene products in neural transplants, we implanted into the hippocampus of immunosuppressed adult Sprague – Dawley rats cell suspensions obtained from the septal region of the fetal brain of mice that carry the human neurofilament-light (hNF-L) gene. In grafts examined between 3 weeks and 7 months after transplantation, axons and nerve cell somata immunoreacted to antibodies specific to the human NF-L subunit. Thus, the hNF-L protein appears to be a suitable marker of these grafted neurons. Transgenic mice bearing the hNF-L gene may be a convenient source of donor tissue or be used as hosts for neural transplantation studies. Furthermore, the hNF-L promoter/enhancer elements in this transgene may help direct neuronal expression of heterologous genes that could influence nerve cell responses in either the transplant or host tissues.

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