Deletion of p75NTR impairs regeneration of peripheral nerves in mice

Xing Yun Song, Feng He Zhang, Fiona H. Zhou, Jinhua Zhong, Xin Fu Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Aims: After peripheral nerve injury, p75NTR was upregulated in Schwann cells of the Wallerian degenerative nerves and in motor neurons but down-regulated in the injured sensory neurons. As p75NTR in neurons mediates signals of both neurotrophins and inhibitory factors, it is regarded as a therapeutic target for the treatment of neurodegeneration. However, its physiological function in the nerve regeneration is not fully understood. In the present study, we aimed to examine the role of p75NTR in the regeneration of peripheral nerves. Main methods: In p75NTR knockout mice (exon III deletion), the sciatic nerves and facial nerves on one side were crushed and regenerating neurons in the facial nuclei and in the dorsal root ganglia were labelled by Fast Blue. The regenerating fibres in the sciatic nerve were also labelled by an anterograde tracer and by immunohistochemistry. Key findings: The results showed that the axonal growth of injured axons in the sciatic nerve of p75NTR mutant mice was significantly retarded. The number of regenerated neurons in the dorsal root ganglia and in the facial nuclei in p75NTR mutant mice was significantly reduced. Immunohistochemical staining of regenerating axons also showed the reduction in nerve regeneration in p75NTR mutant mice. Significance: Our data suggest that p75NTR plays an important role in the regeneration of injured peripheral nerves.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-68
Number of pages8
JournalLife Sciences
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 16 Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Nerve regeneration
  • Neurotrophins
  • Sciatic nerve
  • p75NTR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

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