AIM To investigate the possible involvement of transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) in maturation of enteric glial cells (EGCs). METHODS Immunohistochemical and immunocytochemical techniques were used to analyze EGC markers in myenteric plexus (MP) as well as cultured MP cells and EGCs using TRPV1 knockout (KO) mice. RESULTS We detected TRPV1-immunoreactive signals in EGC in the MP of wild-type (WT) but not KO mice. Expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunoreactive signals was lower at postnatal day (PD) 6 in KO mice, though the difference was not clear at PD 13 and PD 21. When MP cells were isolated and cultured from isolated longitudinal muscle-MP preparation from WT and KO mice, the yield of KO EGC was lower than that of WT EGC, while the yield of KO and WT smooth muscle cells showed no difference. Addition of BCTC, a TRPV1 antagonist, to enriched EGC culture resulted in a decrease in the protein ratio of GFAP to S100B, another EGC/astrocyte-specific marker. CONCLUSION These results address the possibility that TRPV1 may be involved in the maturation of EGC, though further studies are necessary to validate this possibility.
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