C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) is an abundant neuropeptide in the central nervous system, which exerts its physiological effects through natriuretic peptide receptor B (NPR-B). Recently, the CNP/NPR-B system has been recognized as an important regulator for the development of sensory axons. The dorsal root ganglion (DRG) contains neurons transmitting several kinds of spinal sensory stimuli to the central nervous system. In this study, we characterized NPR-B receptor expression in the rat DRG, using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. Immunostaining revealed that NPR-B was expressed in neuronal cell bodies and processes of the DRG, with NPR-B immunoreactivity mainly prominent in small and medium-sized DRG neurons. Double-immunolabeling showed that NPR-B was expressed in calcitonin gene-related peptide- and isolectin B4-positive neurons. Furthermore, NPR-B expression was co-localized with calcitonin gene-related peptide in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Together, our data suggest that the natriuretic peptides may perform several biological actions on sensory neurons via their binding to NPR-B in the DRG.
- Sensory neurons
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience