Isolation, Purification, and Culture of Primary Murine Sensory Neurons

  • Sarah Katzenell
  • Jorge R. Cabrera
  • Brian J. North
  • David A. LeibEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1656)


Cultured primary neurons have been of extraordinary value for the study of neuronal anatomy, cell biology, and physiology. While use of neuronal cell lines has ease and utility, there are often caveats that arise due to their mitotic nature. This methods article presents detailed methodology for the preparation, purification, and culture of adult murine sensory neurons for the study of herpes simplex virus lytic and latent infections. While virology is the application for our laboratory, these cultures also have broad utility for neurobiologists and cell biologists. While these primary cultures have been highly informative, the methodology is challenging to many investigators. Through publication of this highly detailed protocol, it is our hope that the use of this culture system can spread in the field to allow more rapid progress in furthering our understanding of neurotropic virus infection.

Key words

Primary neuron culture Neuron purification Neurotropic virus infection 



Development of the protocols described in this article was supported by PO1 AI098681, and by a pilot grant to JR Cabrera from the Hitchcock Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sarah Katzenell
    • 1
  • Jorge R. Cabrera
    • 1
  • Brian J. North
    • 1
  • David A. Leib
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Geisel School of MedicineDartmouth UniversityLebanonUSA

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