We have made a rat cDNA library using nerve-transected hypoglossal nuclei. Using this library, we performed expressed-sequence tag analysis coupled with in situ hybridization to identify genes whose expression is altered in response to nerve injury. In this gene screening, a member of Rho family GTPases, TC10, which had not yet been characterized in neuronal cells, was identified. TC10 mRNA expression was very low in normal motor neurons; however, axotomy induced its expression dramatically. Other family members such as RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42 were moderately expressed in normal motor neurons and showed slight upregulation after axotomy. The expression level of TC10 mRNA was low in the embryonic brain and gradually increased with development. However, the expression of TC10 mRNA in the adult brain was lower and more restricted than that of RhoA, Rac1, and Cdc42. Cultured dorsal root ganglia exhibited dramatic neurite extension secondary to adenovirus- mediated expression of TC10. It can be concluded that although TC10 expression is lower in developing and mature motor neurons compared with other Rho family members, TC10 expression is induced by nerve injury to play a crucial role in nerve regeneration, particularly neurite elongation, in cooperation with other family members.
Tanabe, K., Tachibana, T., Yamashita, T., Che, Y. H., Yoneda, Y., Ochi, T., … Kiyama, H. (2000). The small GTP-binding protein TC10 promotes nerve elongation in neuronal cells, and its expression is induced during nerve regeneration in rats. Journal of Neuroscience, 20(11), 4138–4144. https://doi.org/10.1523/jneurosci.20-11-04138.2000