Neurotransmitter receptors are known to have direct roles in the modulation of neuronal morphogenesis. Previous work showed that clonal mesencephalic MN9D cells individually transfected with D2-like dopamine receptors show increased neurite outgrowth following long-term exposure to the D2-like receptor agonist quinpirole. In the current study, brief stimulation of D3 receptor-expressing cells also elicited increased neurite outgrowth, which could be mimicked by the G(i)/G(o) protein activator mastoparan. Pretreatment with the G(i)/G(o) protein inhibitor pertussis-toxin blocked the quinpirole- and mastoparan-mediated increases in outgrowth. These results suggest that dopamine D3 receptor stimulation has an immediate, G-protein-mediated role in neuronal morphogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)573-576
Number of pages4
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1996


  • G-proteins
  • dopamine D receptor
  • mesencephalic cell line
  • neurite outgrowth


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