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Chitosan films promote formation of olfactory neurospheres and differentiation of olfactory receptor neurons

Volume: 56 - Issue: 4

Firstpage: 336 - Lastpage: 342

S.T. Li - T.H. Young - C.T. Wang - T.W. Huang

BACKGROUND: Olfactory dysfunction significantly impairs the life quality of patients. Therefore, a model needs to be developed for anosmia. Chitosan is a biodegradable natural polysaccharide that has been widely studied for regenerative purposes in the nervous system. However, whether chitosan promotes differentiation of olfactory receptor neurons or regulates formation of neurospheres in the olfactory system remains unexplored.
METHODOLOGY: Olfactory neuroepithelial cells were isolated from embryonic wistar rats on day 17, and cultured on controls and chitosan films for 12 days. The effects of treatment were assessed using immunocytochemistry, quantitative polymerase chain reaction and western blots following culturing. The substrate of poly-L-lysine-co-laminin was adopted as a control.
RESULTS: In contrast to the flat layer on controls, olfactory neuroepithelial cells form olfactory neurospheres on chitosan films with steadily increasing diameter. The olfactory neurospheres contain basal cells, as well as immature and mature olfactory receptor neurons. The expression level of olfactory marker protein is higher on chitosan films than those on controls in gene and protein levels, and the olfactory transduction elements also express a similar trend. Mature olfactory receptor neurons are found predominantly at the periphery of the olfactory neurospheres.
CONCLUSIONS: Chitosan films not only facilitate formation of olfactory neurospheres, but also promote differentiation of olfactory receptor neurons. Chitosan is a potential biomaterial to establish an in vitro culture model to treat olfactory dysfunction in future.

S.T. Li - T.H. Young - C.T. Wang - T.W. Huang - Chitosan films promote formation of olfactory neurospheres and differentiation of olfactory receptor neurons
Rhinology 56-4: 336-342, 2018