Regeneration and TransplantationMouse epidermal growth factor-responsive neural precursor cells increase the survival and functional capacity of embryonic rat dopamine neurons in vitroOstenfeld, Thor1,2; Horn, Per1; Aardal, Celine1; Ørpen, Ingvild1; Caldwell, Maeve A.1; Svendsen, Clive N.1Author Information 1MRC Cambridge Centre for Brain Repair, University of Cambridge, Forvie Site, Robinson Way, Cambridge CB2 2PY, UK. 2Corresponding Author: Thor Ostenfeld ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: This work was supported by the Wellcome Trust and the Medical Research Council (UK). Received 12 April 1999; accepted 2 May 1999 NeuroReport: June 23rd, 1999 - Volume 10 - Issue 9 - p 1985-1992 Buy Abstract WE have grown expanded populations of epidermal growth factor (EGF)-responsive mouse striatal precursor cells and subsequently co-cultured these with primary E14 rat ventral mesencephalon. The aim of these experiments was to induce dopaminergic (DA) neuronal phenotypes from the murine precursors. While no precursor cell-derived neurons were induced to express tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), there was a dramatic 30-fold increase in the survival of rat-derived TH-positive neurons in the co-cultures. The effect was not explicable solely in terms of total plating density, and was accompanied by a significantly enhanced capacity for [3H]dopamine uptake in the co-cultures compared to rat alone cultures. The present data show that, although primary rat E14 mesencephalic cells are incapable of inducing the development of DA neurons from EGF-responsive mouse neural precursor cells, such precursors will differentiate into cells capable of enhancing the survival and overall functional efficacy of primary embryonic dopamine neurons. © 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.