Culture of arterial chemoreceptor cells from adult cats in defined medium

Machiko Shirahata, Brian Schofield, Beek Y. Chin, Tomas R. Guilarte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Recently patch clamp techniques and optical fluorometric techniques have been applied to freshly dissociated or cultured carotid body glomus cells to investigate chemosensory mechanisms of the carotid body. However, very few studies have shown the effects of the dissociation and/or culture conditions on the health and function of the cells. The purpose of this study was to develop a culture method which support healthy and functioning carotid body cells from adult cats. Carotid bodies were dissociated with 0.1–0.2% collagenase and gentle trituration. The cells were plated on glass wells coated with poly-D-lysin and Matrigel, and cultured in chemically defined medium. Culture was maintained for up to 37 days without overgrowth of fibroblasts. Glomus cells extended their processes within and from clusters. Single glomus cells acquired the shape of neurons. Glomus cells synthesized dopamine and its secretion increased during exposure of the cells to hypoxia. Tyrosine hydroxylase was expressed throughout the culture period. These results indicate that glomus cells cultured under conditions described here are healthy and function in a manner similar to that in vivo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)60-66
Number of pages7
JournalBrain research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • Adult cat
  • Carotid body
  • Cell culture
  • Defined medium
  • Dopamine
  • Hypoxia
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Tyrosine hydroxylase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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