This study was designed to determine the effects of several extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins on the survival and differentiation of cochlear nucleus (CN) neurons grown in primary cell culture. CN neurons were successfully grown on laminin, collagen and fibronectin, but neuronal survival was significantly decreased on all three substrates relative to poly-D-lysine controls. In addition, analysis of dendrite organization patterns indicated that CN neurons branched more extensively when grown on poly-D-lysine than on any of the ECM components tested. Although dendrite growth has been shown to depend strongly on the presence of ECM components in other neuronal systems, the data from these experiments do not support the hypothesis that laminin, collagen or fibronectin is necessary for the survival and differentiation of CN neurons.
- Auditory brain-stem
- Primary cell culture