P0 gene expression in Schwann cells is modulated by an increase of cAMP which is dependent on the presence of axons

Andréa C. LeBlanc, Anthony J. Windebank, Joseph F. Poduslo

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44 Scopus citations


The role of cAMP in the regulation of P0 gene expression was investigated in Schwann cells of normal, regenerated, and permanently transected rat sciatic nerve. Forskolin treatment of endoneurial segments of rat sciatic nerve resulted in increased cAMP and P0 mRNA levels in normal and regenerated nerves but not in permanently transected nerves, where axonal regeneration is prevented. This increase of cAMP and P0 mRNA occured within 30 and 90 min, respectively. P0 mRNA levels in the endoneurial segment of the permanently transected nerve were not increased with dibytyryl cAMP. The Schwann cells of the permanently transected nerve, however, retained the ability to myelinate 15 embryonic day (E15) dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neuron and neurite networks cultured in vitro. P0 mRNA levels increased within 4 days in transected endoneurium segments cocultured with E15 DRG neurons and neurites and further increased in 21 day myelinating cocultures. Although cAMP was not detectable in 4 day cocultures, it increased to detectable levels in 21 day cultures, suggesting that cAMP is involved in the myelinating process. These results indicate that the presence of the axon is required for the observed increase of cAMP and P0 mRNA levels and suggest that the increase of cAMP occurs within the axon which then presumably activates a different Schwann cell second messenger pathway to induce P0 gene expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-38
Number of pages8
JournalMolecular Brain Research
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Jan 1992


  • Myelin gene expression
  • Regulation of gene expression
  • Sciatic nerve injury
  • cAMP-mediated P gene expression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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