The Effects of Nerve Growth Factor on the Growth and Survival of the A875 Human Melanoma Cell Line
Nerve growth factor (NGF) is a classical example of a protein that promotes survival, neurite extension, and transmitter production in neurons. It also affects other types of cells, some of which are neural crest-derived. One of these cell lines, A875 , a human melonoma cell line, was examined for changes in growth and survival in response to the addition of purified mouse NGF to culture medium. When A875 cells are exposed to 2.5S NGF (50 ng/ml) in culture media that are slightly permissive (0.25, 0.50, 0.75% serum), proliferation and growth are enhanced. In contrast to cells grown without NGF, when cells were exposed to NGF in these serum concentrations, cell proliferation was stimulated at a faster rate. These effects were less pronounced in medium depleted of serum growth factors or medium that is highly permissive (> 1% serum). These findings show that NGF has the capacity to increase proliferative activity of the cells and may act as a survival factor. They also show that sufficient FBS concentration is needed for survival of the melanoma line and that some serum factor is needed for the activation of NGF. The present results demonstrate that murine NGF produces biological activity in the A875 cell line. The effects of NGF on growth appear analogous to its actions on the development of the sensory and sympathetic neurons and other neural crest-derived cells.
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