Indexed on: 21 Aug '13Published on: 21 Aug '13Published in: Neuroscience Letters
TrkC is a dependence receptor and many reports have shown that neurotrophin-3 promotes cell survival by inhibiting TrkC-induced apoptosis in many cell lines. However, the identity of the adaptor protein involved in the NT-3/TrkC signaling pathway regulating cell death and survival remains unclear. The downstream of tyrosine kinase/docking protein (Dok) adaptor protein 5 is one substrate of the TrkC receptor. Because NT-3 and its receptor, TrkC, are strongly expressed by sensory neurons, we measured the expression of Dok5 and TrkC in the developing mouse spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia (DRG). We found that the number of cells positive for both Dok5 and TrkC decreases with DRG development. Immunoprecipitation and immunofluorescence staining showed that Dok5 interacted with TrkC and partially colocalized with TrkC in DRG neurons. In HEK293T cells, TrkC triggered apoptosis, but NT-3 prevented TrkC-induced apoptosis. Interestingly, siRNA knockdown of Dok5 expression partially prevented the protection of NT-3 against TrkC-induced apoptosis by regulating the activity of caspase-3. Taken together, we concluded that Dok5 is necessary for NT-3 signaling to block TrkC-induced apoptosis.