Changes in expression of prosaposin in the rat facial nerve nucleus after facial nerve transection

Kana Unuma, Jie Chen, Shouichiro Saito, Naoto Kobayashi, Kohji Sato, Kyoko Saito, Hiroyuki Wakisaka, Katsumi Mominoki, Akira Sano, Seiji Matsuda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


Prosaposin is the precursor of saposins A, B, C and D, which are activators of sphingolipid hydrolases. In addition, unprocessed prosaposin functions as a neurotrophic factor in the central and peripheral nervous systems by acting to prevent neuronal apoptosis, to elongate neurites and to facilitate myelination. In this study, the expression pattern of prosaposin in the facial nerve nucleus after facial nerve transection was examined by immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization. Prosaposin immunoreactivity in the neurons on the operated side facial nerve nucleus showed a biphasic pattern: it was significantly increased on day 3 after transection, decreased dramatically on day 7, started to increase gradually on day 14 and reached another peak on day 21 after transection. Significant increases in the levels of prosaposin mRNA were identified in the neurons on the operated side, suggesting that prosaposin was synthesized vigorously by the neurons themselves in the case of facial nerve transection. The diverse changes in prosaposin immunoreactivity during the process of facial nerve regeneration may reflect the diverse neurotrophic activities of prosaposin in facial motoneurons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)220-227
Number of pages8
JournalNeuroscience Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Facial motoneurons
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In situ hybridization
  • Neurotrophic factor
  • Prosaposin
  • Regeneration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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