Novel, Fully Characterised Bovine Taste Bud Cells of Fungiform Papillae

Habtom Ftuwi, Rheinallt Parri, Afzal R. Mohammed*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Current understanding of functional characteristics and biochemical pathways in taste bud cells have been hindered due the lack of long-term cultured cells. To address this, we developed a holistic approach to fully characterise long term cultured bovine taste bud cells (BTBCs). Initially, cultured BTBCs were characterised using RT-PCR gene expression profiling, immunocytochemistry, flowcytometry and calcium imaging, that confirmed the cells were mature TBCs that express taste receptor genes, taste specific protein markers and capable of responding to taste stimuli, i.e., denatonium (2 mM) and quinine (462.30 μM). Gene expression analysis of forty-two genes implicated in taste transduction pathway (map04742) using custom-made RT-qPCR array revealed high and low expressed genes in BTBCs. Preliminary datamining and bioinformatics demonstrated that the bovine α-gustducin, gustatory G-protein, have higher sequence similarity to the human orthologue compared to rodents. Therefore, results from this work will replace animal experimentation and provide surrogate cell-based throughput system to study human taste transduction.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2285
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2 Sept 2021

Bibliographical note

© 2021 by the authors.
Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
This article is an open access article
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Funding: This work was supported by grant from the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) (NC/N003039/1).


  • taste bud cells
  • taste cell characterization
  • PCR


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