ResearchPad - neuronal-differentiation https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Neurons from human mesenchymal stem cells display both spontaneous and stimuli responsive activity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14593 Mesenchymal stem cells have the ability to transdifferentiate into neurons and therefore one of the potential adult stem cell source for neuronal tissue regeneration applications and understanding neurodevelopmental processes. In many studies on human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) derived neurons, success in neuronal differentiation was limited to neuronal protein expressions which is not statisfactory in terms of neuronal activity. Established neuronal networks seen in culture have to be investigated in terms of synaptic signal transmission ability to develop a culture model for human neurons and further studying the mechanism of neuronal differentiation and neurological pathologies. Accordingly, in this study, we analysed the functionality of bone marrow hMSCs differentiated into neurons by a single step cytokine-based induction protocol. Neurons from both primary hMSCs and hMSC cell line displayed spontaneous activity (≥75%) as demonstrated by Ca++ imaging. Furthermore, when electrically stimulated, hMSC derived neurons (hMd-Neurons) matched the response of a typical neuron in the process of maturation. Our results reveal that a combination of neuronal inducers enhance differentiation capacity of bone marrow hMSCs into high yielding functional neurons with spontaneous activity and mature into electrophysiologically active state. Conceptually, we suggest these functional hMd-Neurons to be used as a tool for disease modelling of neuropathologies and neuronal differentiation studies.

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<![CDATA[The primate-specific peptide Y-P30 regulates morphological maturation of neocortical dendritic spines]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6dca0bd5eed0c48452a6fd

The 30-amino acid peptide Y-P30 corresponds to the N-terminus of the primate-specific, sweat gland-derived dermcidin prepropeptide. Previous work has revealed that Y-P30 enhances the interaction of pleiotrophin and syndecans-2/3, and thus represents a natural ligand to study this signaling pathway. In immature neurons, Y-P30 activates the c-Src and p42/44 ERK kinase pathway, increases the amount of F-actin in axonal growth cones, and promotes neuronal survival, cell migration and axonal elongation. The action of Y-P30 on axonal growth requires syndecan-3 and heparan sulfate side chains. Whether Y-P30 has the potential to influence dendrites and dendritic protrusions has not been explored. The latter is suggested by the observations that syndecan-2 expression increases during postnatal development, that syndecan-2 becomes enriched in dendritic spines, and that overexpression of syndecan-2 in immature neurons results in a premature morphological maturation of dendritic spines. Here, analysing rat cortical pyramidal and non-pyramidal neurons in organotypic cultures, we show that Y-P30 does not alter the development of the dendritic arborization patterns. However, Y-P30 treatment decreases the density of apical, but not basal dendritic protrusions at the expense of the filopodia. Analysis of spine morphology revealed an unchanged mushroom/stubby-to-thin spine ratio and a shortening of the longest decile of dendritic protrusions. Whole-cell recordings from cortical principal neurons in dissociated cultures grown in the presence of Y-P30 demonstrated a decrease in the frequency of glutamatergic mEPSCs. Despite these differences in protrusion morphology and synaptic transmission, the latter likely attributable to presynaptic effects, calcium event rate and amplitude recorded in pyramidal neurons in organotypic cultures were not altered by Y-P30 treatment. Together, our data suggest that Y-P30 has the capacity to decelerate spinogenesis and to promote morphological, but not synaptic, maturation of dendritic protrusions.

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<![CDATA[The Drosophila fussel gene is required for bitter gustatory neuron differentiation acting within an Rpd3 dependent chromatin modifying complex]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c65dcafd5eed0c484dec036

Members of the Ski/Sno protein family are classified as proto-oncogenes and act as negative regulators of the TGF-ß/BMP-pathways in vertebrates and invertebrates. A newly identified member of this protein family is fussel (fuss), the Drosophila homologue of the human functional Smad suppressing elements (fussel-15 and fussel-18). We and others have shown that Fuss interacts with SMAD4 and that overexpression leads to a strong inhibition of Dpp signaling. However, to be able to characterize the endogenous Fuss function in Drosophila melanogaster, we have generated a number of state of the art tools including anti-Fuss antibodies, specific fuss-Gal4 lines and fuss mutant fly lines via the CRISPR/Cas9 system. Fuss is a predominantly nuclear, postmitotic protein, mainly expressed in interneurons and fuss mutants are fully viable without any obvious developmental phenotype. To identify potential target genes or cells affected in fuss mutants, we conducted targeted DamID experiments in adult flies, which revealed the function of fuss in bitter gustatory neurons. We fully characterized fuss expression in the adult proboscis and by using food choice assays we were able to show that fuss mutants display defects in detecting bitter compounds. This correlated with a reduction of gustatory receptor gene expression (Gr33a, Gr66a, Gr93a) providing a molecular link to the behavioral phenotype. In addition, Fuss interacts with Rpd3, and downregulation of rpd3 in gustatory neurons phenocopies the loss of Fuss expression. Surprisingly, there is no colocalization of Fuss with phosphorylated Mad in the larval central nervous system, excluding a direct involvement of Fuss in Dpp/BMP signaling. Here we provide a first and exciting link of Fuss function in gustatory bitter neurons. Although gustatory receptors have been well characterized, little is known regarding the differentiation and maturation of gustatory neurons. This work therefore reveals Fuss as a pivotal element for the proper differentiation of bitter gustatory neurons acting within a chromatin modifying complex.

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<![CDATA[Abrogation of Stem Loop Binding Protein (Slbp) function leads to a failure of cells to transition from proliferation to differentiation, retinal coloboma and midline axon guidance deficits]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c59feb3d5eed0c48413530b

Through forward genetic screening for mutations affecting visual system development, we identified prominent coloboma and cell-autonomous retinal neuron differentiation, lamination and retinal axon projection defects in eisspalte (ele) mutant zebrafish. Additional axonal deficits were present, most notably at midline axon commissures. Genetic mapping and cloning of the ele mutation showed that the affected gene is slbp, which encodes a conserved RNA stem-loop binding protein involved in replication dependent histone mRNA metabolism. Cells throughout the central nervous system remained in the cell cycle in ele mutant embryos at stages when, and locations where, post-mitotic cells have differentiated in wild-type siblings. Indeed, RNAseq analysis showed down-regulation of many genes associated with neuronal differentiation. This was coincident with changes in the levels and spatial localisation of expression of various genes implicated, for instance, in axon guidance, that likely underlie specific ele phenotypes. These results suggest that many of the cell and tissue specific phenotypes in ele mutant embryos are secondary to altered expression of modules of developmental regulatory genes that characterise, or promote transitions in, cell state and require the correct function of Slbp-dependent histone and chromatin regulatory genes.

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<![CDATA[KDM2B regulates choline kinase expression and neuronal differentiation of neuroblastoma cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c40f7add5eed0c4843865c6

The process of neuronal differentiation is associated with neurite elongation and membrane biogenesis, and phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho) is the major membrane phospholipid in mammalian cells. During neuroblast differentiation, the transcription of two genes involved in PtdCho biosynthesis are stimulated: Chka gene for choline kinase (CK) alpha isoform and Pcyt1a gene for CTP:phosphocholine cytidylyltransferase (CCT) alpha isoform. Here we show that CKα is essential for neuronal differentiation. In addition, we demonstrated that KDM2B regulates CKα expression and, as a consequence, neuronal differentiation. This factor is up-regulated in the course of the neuroblasts proliferative and undifferentiated state and down-regulated during differentiation induced by retinoic acid (RA). During proliferation, KDM2B binds to the Box2 located in the Chka promoter repressing its transcription. Interestingly, KDM2B knockdown enhances the levels of CKα expression in neuroblast cells and induces neuronal differentiation even in the absence of RA. These results suggest that KDM2B is required for the appropriate regulation of CKα during neuronal differentiation and to the maintaining of the undifferentiated stage of neuroblast cells.

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<![CDATA[Cholinesterase inhibitor rivastigmine enhances nerve growth factor-induced neurite outgrowth in PC12 cells via sigma-1 and sigma-2 receptors]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c215139d5eed0c4843f9398

Rivastigmine (Riv) is a potent and selective cholinesterase (acetylcholinesterase, AChE and butyrylcholinesterase, BuChE) inhibitor developed for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). To elucidate whether Riv causes neuronal differentiation, we examined its effect on nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced neurite outgrowth in PC12 cells. At concentrations of 0–100 μM, Riv was non-toxic in PC12 cells. Riv caused dose-dependent (10–100 μM) enhancement of NGF-induced neurite outgrowth, which was completely inhibited by the TrkA antagonist GW-441756. By contrast, Riv-mediated enhancement of neurite outgrowth was not blocked by the acetylcholine receptor antagonists, scopolamine and hexamethonium. However, the sigma-1 receptor (Sig-1R) antagonist NE-100 and sigma-2 receptor (Sig-2R) antagonist SM-21 each blocked about half of the Riv-mediated enhancement of NGF-induced neurite outgrowth. Interestingly, the simultaneous application of NE-100 and SM-21 completely blocked the enhancement of NGF-induced neurite outgrowth by Riv. These findings suggest that both Sig-1R and Sig-2R play important roles in NGF-induced neurite outgrowth through TrkA and that Riv may contribute to neuronal repair via Sig-1R and Sig-2R in AD therapy.

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<![CDATA[Small-molecule induction of Aβ-42 peptide production in human cerebral organoids to model Alzheimer's disease associated phenotypes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c21517bd5eed0c4843fa61e

Human mini-brains (MB) are cerebral organoids that recapitulate in part the complexity of the human brain in a unique three-dimensional in vitro model, yielding discrete brain regions reminiscent of the cerebral cortex. Specific proteins linked to neurodegenerative disorders are physiologically expressed in MBs, such as APP-derived amyloids (Aβ), whose physiological and pathological roles and interactions with other proteins are not well established in humans. Here, we demonstrate that neuroectodermal organoids can be used to study the Aβ accumulation implicated in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). To enhance the process of protein secretion and accumulation, we adopted a chemical strategy of induction to modulate post-translational pathways of APP using an Amyloid-β Forty-Two Inducer named Aftin-5. Secreted, soluble Aβ fragment concentrations were analyzed in MB-conditioned media. An increase in the Aβ42 fragment secretion was observed as was an increased Aβ42/Aβ40 ratio after drug treatment, which is consistent with the pathological-like phenotypes described in vivo in transgenic animal models and in vitro in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neural cultures obtained from AD patients. Notably in this context we observe time-dependent Aβ accumulation, which differs from protein accumulation occurring after treatment. We show that mini-brains obtained from a non-AD control cell line are responsive to chemical compound induction, producing a shift of physiological Aβ concentrations, suggesting that this model can be used to identify environmental agents that may initiate the cascade of events ultimately leading to sporadic AD. Increases in both Aβ oligomers and their target, the cellular prion protein (PrPC), support the possibility of using MBs to further understand the pathophysiological role that underlies their interaction in a human model. Finally, the potential application of MBs for modeling age-associated phenotypes and the study of neurological disorders is confirmed.

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<![CDATA[Meta-Analysis of EMT Datasets Reveals Different Types of EMT]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab7ab0ee8fa60bad5ff

As a critical process during embryonic development, cancer progression and cell fate conversions, epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) has been extensively studied over the last several decades. To further understand the nature of EMT, we performed meta-analysis of multiple microarray datasets to identify the related generic signature. In this study, 24 human and 17 mouse microarray datasets were integrated to identify conserved gene expression changes in different types of EMT. Our integrative analysis revealed that there is low agreement among the list of the identified signature genes and three other lists in previous studies. Since removing the datasets with weakly-induced EMT from the analysis did not significantly improve the overlapping in the signature-gene lists, we hypothesized the existence of different types of EMT. This hypothesis was further supported by the grouping of 74 human EMT-induction samples into five distinct clusters, and the identification of distinct pathways in these different clusters of EMT samples. The five clusters of EMT-induction samples also improves the understanding of the characteristics of different EMT types. Therefore, we concluded the existence of different types of EMT was the possible reason for its complex role in multiple biological processes.

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<![CDATA[Further characterisation of differences between TL and AB zebrafish (Danio rerio): Gene expression, physiology and behaviour at day 5 of the larval stage]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db52ab0ee8fa60bdc957

Zebrafish (Danio rerio) have become popular as model organism in research. Many strains are readily available, which not only differ morphologically, but also genetically, physiologically and behaviourally. Here, we focus on the AB and Tupfel long-fin (TL) strain for which we have previously shown that adults differ in baseline hypothalamus-pituitary-interrenal (HPI)-axis activity (AB higher than TL) affecting inhibitory avoidance behaviour (absent in AB). To assess whether strain differences are already present in early life stages, we compared baseline HPI-axis related gene expression as well as cortisol levels, (neuro)development related as well as (innate) immune system related gene expression, and light-dark as well as startle behaviour in larvae 5 days post fertilisation. The data show that AB and TL larvae differ in baseline HPI-axis activity (AB higher than TL), expression of (neuro)development and immune system related genes (AB higher than TL), habituation to acoustic/vibrational stimuli (AB habituate faster than TL) and light-dark induced changes in motor behaviour (AB stronger than TL). Our data show that already in larval stages differences exist between zebrafish of the AB and TL strain confirming and extending data of earlier studies. To what extent the mutation in connexin 41.8, leading to spots rather than stripes in TL, but also (possibly) affecting eye, heart and brain function, is involved in the expression of (some of) these differences needs to be studied. These results emphasise that differences between strains need to be taken into account to enhance reproducibility both within, and between, laboratories.

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<![CDATA[Mesenchymal Stem Cells from Human Extra Ocular Muscle Harbor Neuroectodermal Differentiation Potential]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da81ab0ee8fa60b9a97f

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) have been proposed as suitable candidates for cell therapy for neurological disorderssince they exhibit good neuronal differentiation capacity. However, for better therapeutic outcomes, it is necessary to isolate MSC from a suitable tissue sourcethat posses high neuronal differentiation. In this context, we isolated MSC from extra ocular muscle (EOM) tissue and tested the in vitro neuronal differentiation potential. In the current study, EOM tissue derived MSC were characterized and compared with bone marrow derived MSC. We found that EOM derived MSC proliferated as a monolayer and showed similarities in morphology, growth properties and cell surface marker expression with bone marrow derived MSC and expressed high levels of NES, OCT4, NANOG and SOX2 in its undifferentiated state. They also expressed embryonic cell surface marker SSEA4 and their intracellular mitochondrial distribution pattern was similar to that of multipotent stem cells. Although EOM derived MSC differentiated readily into adipocytes, osteocytes and chondrocytes, they differentiated more efficiently into neuroectodermal cells. The differentiation into neuroectodermal cellswas confirmed by the expression of neuronal markers NGFR and MAP2B. Thus, EOM derived MSC might be good candidates for stem cell based therapies for treating neurodegenerative diseases.

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<![CDATA[Regulation of C. elegans Neuronal Differentiation by the ZEB-Family Factor ZAG-1 and the NK-2 Homeodomain Factor CEH-28]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9edab0ee8fa60b6d394

The C. elegans pharyngeal neuron M4 is a multi-functional cell that acts as a cholinergic motor neuron to stimulate peristaltic pharyngeal muscle contraction and as a neuroendocrine cell secreting neuropeptides and growth factors to affect other cells both inside and outside the pharynx. The conserved transcription factors ZAG-1 and CEH-28 are co-expressed in M4 through most of development, and here we examine how these factors contribute to M4 differentiation. We find ZAG-1 functions upstream of CEH-28 in a branched pathway to activate expression of different sets of M4 differentiation markers. CEH-28 activates expression of the growth factor genes dbl-1 and egl-17, and the neuropeptide genes flp-5 and flp-2, while ZAG-1 activates expression of the serotonin receptor ser-7, as well as expression of ceh-28 and its downstream targets. Other markers of M4 differentiation are expressed normally in both zag-1 and ceh-28 mutants, including the neuropeptide gene flp-21 and the acetylcholine biosynthetic gene unc-17. Unlike ceh-28 mutants, zag-1 mutants completely lack peristaltic muscle contractions resulting from broader defects in M4 differentiation. Despite these defects, neither ZAG-1 nor CEH-28 are terminal selectors of the M4 phenotype, and we suggest they function in a hierarchy to regulate different aspects of M4 differentiation.

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<![CDATA[Regulation of Nuclear Receptor Nur77 by miR-124]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db10ab0ee8fa60bcbdee

The nuclear receptor Nur77 is commonly upregulated in adult cancers and has oncogenic functions. Nur77 is an immediate-early response gene that acts as a transcription factor to promote proliferation and protect cells from apoptosis. Conversely, Nur77 can translocate to the mitochondria and induce apoptosis upon treatment with various cytotoxic agents. Because Nur77 is upregulated in cancer and may have a role in cancer progression, it is of interest to understand the mechanism controlling its expression. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are responsible for inhibiting translation of their target genes by binding to the 3ʹUTR and either degrading the mRNA or preventing it from being translated into protein, thereby making these non-coding endogenous RNAs vital regulators of every cellular process. Several miRNAs have been predicted to target Nur77; however, strong evidence showing the regulation of Nur77 by any miRNA is lacking. In this study, we used a luciferase reporter assay containing the 3ʹUTR of Nur77 to screen 296 miRNAs and found that miR-124, which is the most abundant miRNA in the brain and has a role in promoting neuronal differentiation, caused the greatest reduction in luciferase activity. Interestingly, we discovered an inverse relationship in Daoy medulloblastoma cells and undifferentiated granule neuron precursors in which Nur77 is upregulated and miR-124 is downregulated. Exogenous expression to further elevate Nur77 levels in Daoy cells increased proliferation and viability, but knocking down Nur77 via siRNA resulted in the opposite phenotype. Importantly, exogenous expression of miR-124 reduced Nur77 expression, cell viability, proliferation, and tumor spheroid size in 3D culture. In all, we have discovered miR-124 to be downregulated in instances of medulloblastoma in which Nur77 is upregulated, resulting in a proliferative state that abets cancer progression. This study provides evidence for increasing miR-124 expression as a potential therapy for cancers with elevated levels of Nur77.

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<![CDATA[A Single Postnatal Dose of Dexamethasone Enhances Memory of Rat Pups Later in Life]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da36ab0ee8fa60b8665e

Postnatal dexamethasone (Dex) therapy is associated with adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes, which might be related to its timing of administration. We used time-dated pregnant Wistar albino rats, whose litters were divided into experimental (Dex) and control groups intraperitoneally administered one dose of Dex (0.5 mg/kg) or normal saline (NS), respectively, at either day 1 (P1) or 7 (P7). The magnitude of the contextual freezing response and performance on the Morris water maze were significantly higher in the Dex-P7 group than in those of the other groups at P56. Dendritic spine density, membranous expression of the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) subunit NR2A/2B, and postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95) were significantly higher in the Dex-P7 group than in the other groups. Furthermore, cytosolic expression of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) was significantly higher in the Dex group than in NS group. Moreover, Dex administration at P7 increased cell proliferation, neuronal differentiation, and the survival of newly born neurons in the dentate gyrus. These results suggest Dex at P7 enhances the acquisition of contextual fear and spatial memory later in life due to the modulation of the newly born neurons, increase in dendritic spine number, and NMDAR expression.

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<![CDATA[Tomosyn Negatively Regulates Arginine Vasopressin Secretion in Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Neurons]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da5bab0ee8fa60b8fd99

Arginine vasopressin (AVP) is secreted via exocytosis; however, the precise molecular mechanism underlying the exocytosis of AVP remains to be elucidated. To better understand the mechanisms of AVP secretion, in our study we have identified proteins that bind with a 25 kDa synaptosomal-associated protein (SNAP25). SNAP25 plays a crucial role in exocytosis, in the posterior pituitary. Embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived AVP neurons were established to investigate the functions of the identified proteins. Using glutathione S-transferase (GST)-pulldown assays and proteomic analyses, we identified tomosyn-1 (syntaxin-binding protein 5) as a SNAP25-binding protein in the posterior pituitary. Coimmunoprecipitation assays indicated that tomosyn formed N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complexes with SNAP25 and syntaxin1. Immunohistochemistry showed that tomosyn localized to the posterior pituitary. Mouse ES cells self-differentiated into AVP neurons (mES-AVP) that expressed tomosyn and two transmembrane SNARE proteins, including SNAP25 and syntaxin1. KCl increased AVP secretion in mES-AVP, and overexpression of tomosyn-1 reduced KCl-stimulated AVP secretion. Downregulation of tomosyn-1 with siRNA increased KCl-stimulated AVP secretion. These results suggested that tomosyn-1 negatively regulated AVP secretion in mES-AVP and further suggest the possibility of using mES-AVP culture systems to evaluate the role of synaptic proteins from AVP neurons.

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<![CDATA[Three Dimensional Human Neuro-Spheroid Model of Alzheimer’s Disease Based on Differentiated Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da40ab0ee8fa60b89872

The testing of candidate drugs to slow progression of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) requires clinical trials that are lengthy and expensive. Efforts to model the biochemical milieu of the AD brain may be greatly facilitated by combining two cutting edge technologies to generate three-dimensional (3D) human neuro-spheroid from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) derived from AD subjects. We created iPSC from blood cells of five AD patients and differentiated them into 3D human neuronal culture. We characterized neuronal markers of our 3D neurons by immunocytochemical staining to validate the differentiation status. To block the generation of pathologic amyloid β peptides (Aβ), the 3D-differentiated AD neurons were treated with inhibitors targeting β-secretase (BACE1) and γ-secretases. As predicted, both BACE1 and γ-secretase inhibitors dramatically decreased Aβ generation in iPSC-derived neural cells derived from all five AD patients, under standard two-dimensional (2D) differentiation conditions. However, BACE1 and γ-secretase inhibitors showed less potency in decreasing Aβ levels in neural cells differentiated under 3D culture conditions. Interestingly, in a single subject AD1, we found that BACE1 inhibitor treatment was not able to significantly reduce Aβ42 levels. To investigate underlying molecular mechanisms, we performed proteomic analysis of 3D AD human neuronal cultures including AD1. Proteomic analysis revealed specific reduction of several proteins that might contribute to a poor inhibition of BACE1 in subject AD1. To our knowledge, this is the first iPSC-differentiated 3D neuro-spheroid model derived from AD patients’ blood. Our results demonstrate that our 3D human neuro-spheroid model can be a physiologically relevant and valid model for testing efficacy of AD drug.

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<![CDATA[The Limited Utility of Multiunit Data in Differentiating Neuronal Population Activity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dafdab0ee8fa60bc5769

To date, single neuron recordings remain the gold standard for monitoring the activity of neuronal populations. Since obtaining single neuron recordings is not always possible, high frequency or ‘multiunit activity’ (MUA) is often used as a surrogate. Although MUA recordings allow one to monitor the activity of a large number of neurons, they do not allow identification of specific neuronal subtypes, the knowledge of which is often critical for understanding electrophysiological processes. Here, we explored whether prior knowledge of the single unit waveform of specific neuron types is sufficient to permit the use of MUA to monitor and distinguish differential activity of individual neuron types. We used an experimental and modeling approach to determine if components of the MUA can monitor medium spiny neurons (MSNs) and fast-spiking interneurons (FSIs) in the mouse dorsal striatum. We demonstrate that when well-isolated spikes are recorded, the MUA at frequencies greater than 100Hz is correlated with single unit spiking, highly dependent on the waveform of each neuron type, and accurately reflects the timing and spectral signature of each neuron. However, in the absence of well-isolated spikes (the norm in most MUA recordings), the MUA did not typically contain sufficient information to permit accurate prediction of the respective population activity of MSNs and FSIs. Thus, even under ideal conditions for the MUA to reliably predict the moment-to-moment activity of specific local neuronal ensembles, knowledge of the spike waveform of the underlying neuronal populations is necessary, but not sufficient.

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<![CDATA[dachshund Potentiates Hedgehog Signaling during Drosophila Retinogenesis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da98ab0ee8fa60ba2847

Proper organ patterning depends on a tight coordination between cell proliferation and differentiation. The patterning of Drosophila retina occurs both very fast and with high precision. This process is driven by the dynamic changes in signaling activity of the conserved Hedgehog (Hh) pathway, which coordinates cell fate determination, cell cycle and tissue morphogenesis. Here we show that during Drosophila retinogenesis, the retinal determination gene dachshund (dac) is not only a target of the Hh signaling pathway, but is also a modulator of its activity. Using developmental genetics techniques, we demonstrate that dac enhances Hh signaling by promoting the accumulation of the Gli transcription factor Cubitus interruptus (Ci) parallel to or downstream of fused. In the absence of dac, all Hh-mediated events associated to the morphogenetic furrow are delayed. One of the consequences is that, posterior to the furrow, dac- cells cannot activate a Roadkill-Cullin3 negative feedback loop that attenuates Hh signaling and which is necessary for retinal cells to continue normal differentiation. Therefore, dac is part of an essential positive feedback loop in the Hh pathway, guaranteeing the speed and the accuracy of Drosophila retinogenesis.

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<![CDATA[Anti-cancer stemness and anti-invasive activity of bitter taste receptors, TAS2R8 and TAS2R10, in human neuroblastoma cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5aab0ee8fa60bdf4f9

Neuroblastoma (NB) originates from immature neuronal cells and currently has a poor clinical outcome. NB cells possess cancer stem cells (CSCs) characteristics that facilitate the initiation of a tumor, as well as its metastasis. Human bitter taste receptors, referred to as TAS2Rs, are one of five types of basic taste receptors and they belong to a family of G-protein coupled receptors. The recent finding that taste receptors are expressed in non-gustatory tissues suggest that they mediate additional functions distinct from taste perception. While it is generally admitted that the recognition of bitter tastes may be associated with a self-defense system to prevent the ingestion of poisonous food compounds, this recognition may also serve as a disease-related function in the human body. In particular, the anti-cancer stemness and invasion effects of TAS2Rs on NB cells remain poorly understood. In the present study, endogenous expression of TAS2R8 and TAS2R10 in SK-N-BE(2)C and SH-SY5Y cells was examined. In addition, higher levels of TAS2R8 and TAS2R10 expression were investigated in more differentiated SY5Y cells. Both TAS2Rs were up-regulated following the induction of neuronal cell differentiation by retinoic acid. In addition, ectopic transfection of the two TAS2Rs induced neurite elongation in the BE(2)C cells, and down-regulated CSCs markers (including DLK1, CD133, Notch1, and Sox2), and suppressed self-renewal characteristics. In particular, TAS2RS inhibited tumorigenicity. Furthermore, when TAS2Rs was over-expressed, cell migration, cell invasion, and matrix metalloproteinases activity were inhibited. Expression levels of hypoxia-inducible factor-1α, a well-known regulator of tumor metastasis, as well as its downstream targets, vascular endothelial growth factor and glucose transporter-1, were also suppressed by TAS2Rs. Taken together, these novel findings suggest that TAS2Rs targets CSCs by suppressing cancer stemness characteristics and NB cell invasion, thereby highlighting the chemotherapeutic potential of bitter taste receptors.

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<![CDATA[Abnormal differentiation of Sandhoff disease model mouse-derived multipotent stem cells toward a neural lineage]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60be0296

In Sandhoff disease (SD), the activity of the lysosomal hydrolytic enzyme, β-hexosaminidase (Hex), is lost due to a Hexb gene defect, which results in the abnormal accumulation of the substrate, GM2 ganglioside (GM2), in neuronal cells, causing neuronal loss, microglial activation, and astrogliosis. We established induced pluripotent stem cells from the cells of SD mice (SD-iPSCs). In the present study, we investigated the occurrence of abnormal differentiation and development of a neural lineage in the asymptomatic phase of SD in vitro using SD mouse fetus-derived neural stem cells (NSCs) and SD-iPSCs. It was assumed that the number of SD mouse fetal brain-derived NSCs was reduced and differentiation was promoted, resulting in the inhibition of differentiation into neurons and enhancement of differentiation into astrocytes. The number of SD-iPSC-derived NSCs was also reduced, suggesting that the differentiation of NSCs was promoted, resulting in the inhibition of differentiation into neurons and enhancement of that into astrocytes. This abnormal differentiation of SD-iPSCs toward a neural lineage was reduced by the glucosylceramide synthase inhibitor, miglustat. Furthermore, abnormal differentiation toward a neural lineage was reduced in SD-iPSCs with Hexb gene transfection. Therefore, differentiation ability along the time axis appears to be altered in SD mice in which the differentiation ability of NSCs is promoted and differentiation into neurons is completed earlier, while the timing of differentiation into astrocytes is accelerated. These results clarified that the abnormal differentiation of SD-iPSCs toward a neural lineage in vitro was shown to reflect the pathology of SD.

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<![CDATA[A coordinated DNA damage response promotes adult quiescent neural stem cell activation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db5cab0ee8fa60be03b3

Stem and differentiated cells frequently differ in their response to DNA damage, which can determine tissue sensitivity. By exploiting insight into the spatial arrangement of subdomains within the adult neural subventricular zone (SVZ) in vivo, we show distinct responses to ionising radiation (IR) between neural stem and progenitor cells. Further, we reveal different DNA damage responses between neonatal and adult neural stem cells (NSCs). Neural progenitors (transit amplifying cells and neuroblasts) but not NSCs (quiescent and activated) undergo apoptosis after 2 Gy IR. This response is cell type- rather than proliferation-dependent and does not appear to be driven by distinctions in DNA damage induction or repair capacity. Moreover, exposure to 2 Gy IR promotes proliferation arrest and differentiation in the adult SVZ. These 3 responses are ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM)-dependent and promote quiescent NSC (qNSC) activation, which does not occur in the subdomains that lack progenitors. Neuroblasts arising post-IR derive from activated qNSCs rather than irradiated progenitors, minimising damage compounded by replication or mitosis. We propose that rather than conferring sensitive cell death, apoptosis is a form of rapid cell death that serves to remove damaged progenitors and promote qNSC activation. Significantly, analysis of the neonatal (P5) SVZ reveals that although progenitors remain sensitive to apoptosis, they fail to efficiently arrest proliferation. Consequently, their repopulation occurs rapidly from irradiated progenitors rather than via qNSC activation.

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