Neurogastroenterology and motility vol:21 issue:8 pages:870-+
P>The importance of dynamic interactions between glia and neurons is increasingly recognized, both in the central and enteric nervous system. However, apart from their protective role, little is known about enteric neuro-glia interaction. The aim was to investigate neuro-glia intercellular communication in a mouse culture model using optical techniques. Complete embryonic (E13) guts were enzymatically dissociated, seeded on coverslips and studied with immunohistochemistry and Ca2+-imaging. Putative progenitor-like cells (expressing both PGP9.5 and S-100) differentiated over approximately 5 days into glia or neurons expressing typical cell-specific markers. The glia-neuron ratio could be manipulated by specific supplements (N2, G5). Neurons and glia were functionally identified both by their Ca2+-response to either depolarization (high K+) or lysophosphatidic acid and by the expression of typical markers. Neurons responded to ACh, DMPP, 5-HT, ATP and electrical stimulation, while glia responded to ATP and ADP beta s. Inhibition of glial responses by MRS2179 suggests involvement of P2Y1 receptors. Neuronal stimulation also caused delayed glial responses, which were reduced by suramin and by exogenous apyrases that catalyse nucleotide breakdown. Conversely, glial responses were enhanced by ARL-67156, an ecto-ATPase inhibitor. In this mouse enteric co-culture, functional glia and neurons can be easily monitored using optical techniques. Glial cells can be activated directly by ATP or ADP beta s. Activation of neuronal cells (DMPP, K+) causes secondary responses in glial cells, which can be modulated by tuning ATP and ADP breakdown. This strongly supports the involvement of paracrine purinergic communication between enteric neurons and glia.