OBJECTIVE To investigate whether partial dorsal root rhizotomy promotes the anterograde Five adult cats were transportation of BDNF, NT-3 and GDNF in the primary sensory neuron. METHODS Subjected to unilateral spared root rhizotomy (the DRGs of L1-L5 and L7-S2 were removed, but L6 DRG was spared) and bilateral dorsal roots of L6 were ligated at the same time. Three days after operation, dorsal roots were taken out and made into frozen sections 20 microm in thickness. The sections were stained using specific BDNF, NT-3, GDNF antibody (1:1500) by ABC method. The immunoreactive density was observed in a site near DRG and a site near spinal cord. RESULTS In the control group (with spared L6 DRG), there were no marked differences in NT-3 and GDNF immunoreactivity between the site near DRG and the site near spinal cord, while BDNF immunoreactivity was more intense in the site near DRG than that in the site near spinal cord. In the operation group, the immunoreactivity of each neurotrophin in the site near DRG was stronger than that in the site near spinal cord, and the immunoreactivities of BDNF, NT-3, GDNF in the site near DRG of the operation were stronger than those of the control group respectively. CONCLUSION The increasing of immunoreactivities of neurotrophins near DRG following partial dorsal root rhizotomy suggests that partial dorsal root rhizotomy can promote their anterograde transportation from spared DRG to the spinal cord.