Toxicity of "DiI" for embryonic rat motoneurons and sensory neurons in vitro

Paul A. St. John

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The carbocyanine dye DiIC18(3) ("DiI") is commonly used for both anterograde and retrograde labeling of neurons, including live neurons in situ and in vitro. In the present experiments, DiIC18(3) was used to label motoneurons in the spinal cords and sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglia of embryonic rats. When the neurons from these regions were placed in culture, the neurons labeled by the dye were found to die rapidly, suggesting that DiIC18(3) can be toxic to neurons of these types. A related dye, DiIC18(3), was found to be equally suitable for labelling these neurons, and was found not to have detectable toxic effects in vitro.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2013-2021
Number of pages9
JournalLife Sciences
Issue number26
StatePublished - 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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