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Sample records for astrocyte subtype revealed

  1. Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Rune; Samson, Andrew J.

    2017-01-01

    Anatomy, physiology, proteomics, and genomics reveal the prospect of distinct highly specialized astrocyte subtypes within neural circuits.......Anatomy, physiology, proteomics, and genomics reveal the prospect of distinct highly specialized astrocyte subtypes within neural circuits....

  2. Transcriptome classification reveals molecular subtypes in psoriasis

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    Ainali Chrysanthi

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Psoriasis is an immune-mediated disease characterised by chronically elevated pro-inflammatory cytokine levels, leading to aberrant keratinocyte proliferation and differentiation. Although certain clinical phenotypes, such as plaque psoriasis, are well defined, it is currently unclear whether there are molecular subtypes that might impact on prognosis or treatment outcomes. Results We present a pipeline for patient stratification through a comprehensive analysis of gene expression in paired lesional and non-lesional psoriatic tissue samples, compared with controls, to establish differences in RNA expression patterns across all tissue types. Ensembles of decision tree predictors were employed to cluster psoriatic samples on the basis of gene expression patterns and reveal gene expression signatures that best discriminate molecular disease subtypes. This multi-stage procedure was applied to several published psoriasis studies and a comparison of gene expression patterns across datasets was performed. Conclusion Overall, classification of psoriasis gene expression patterns revealed distinct molecular sub-groups within the clinical phenotype of plaque psoriasis. Enrichment for TGFb and ErbB signaling pathways, noted in one of the two psoriasis subgroups, suggested that this group may be more amenable to therapies targeting these pathways. Our study highlights the potential biological relevance of using ensemble decision tree predictors to determine molecular disease subtypes, in what may initially appear to be a homogenous clinical group. The R code used in this paper is available upon request.

  3. Human glial chimeric mice reveal astrocytic dependence of JC virus infection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kondo, Yoichi; Windrem, Martha S; Zou, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    with humanized white matter by engrafting human glial progenitor cells (GPCs) into neonatal immunodeficient and myelin-deficient mice. Intracerebral delivery of JCV resulted in infection and subsequent demyelination of these chimeric mice. Human GPCs and astrocytes were infected more readily than...... that was chimeric for human astrocytes and GPCs. JCV effectively propagated in these mice, which indicates that astroglial infection is sufficient for JCV spread. Sequencing revealed progressive mutation of the JCV capsid protein VP1 after infection, suggesting that PML may evolve with active infection...

  4. In vivo imaging reveals rapid astrocyte depletion and axon damage in a model of neuromyelitis optica-related pathology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Herwerth, Marina; Kalluri, Sudhakar Reddy; Srivastava, Rajneesh

    2016-01-01

    IgG autoantibodies against aquaporin-4 (AQP4), an astrocytic water channel. Antibodies against AQP4 can damage astrocytes via complement, but NMO histopathology also shows demyelination, and - importantly - axon injury, which may determine permanent deficits following NMO relapses. The dynamics...... antibodies in mice. RESULTS: We found that human AQP4 antibodies caused acute astrocyte depletion with initial oligodendrocyte survival. Within two hours of antibody application, we observed secondary axon injury in the form of progressive swellings. Astrocyte toxicity and axon damage were dependent on AQP4...... antibody concentration and complement, specifically C1q. INTERPRETATION: In vivo imaging of the spinal cord reveals the swift development of NMO-related acute axon injury following AQP4 antibody-mediated astrocyte depletion. This approach will be useful in studying the mechanisms underlying the spread...

  5. Glycogen distribution in the microwave-fixed mouse brain reveals heterogeneous astrocytic patterns.

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    Oe, Yuki; Baba, Otto; Ashida, Hitoshi; Nakamura, Kouichi C; Hirase, Hajime

    2016-09-01

    In the brain, glycogen metabolism has been implied in synaptic plasticity and learning, yet the distribution of this molecule has not been fully described. We investigated cerebral glycogen of the mouse by immunohistochemistry (IHC) using two monoclonal antibodies that have different affinities depending on the glycogen size. The use of focused microwave irradiation yielded well-defined glycogen immunoreactive signals compared with the conventional periodic acid-Schiff method. The IHC signals displayed a punctate distribution localized predominantly in astrocytic processes. Glycogen immunoreactivity (IR) was high in the hippocampus, striatum, cortex, and cerebellar molecular layer, whereas it was low in the white matter and most of the subcortical structures. Additionally, glycogen distribution in the hippocampal CA3-CA1 and striatum had a 'patchy' appearance with glycogen-rich and glycogen-poor astrocytes appearing in alternation. The glycogen patches were more evident with large-molecule glycogen in young adult mice but they were hardly observable in aged mice (1-2 years old). Our results reveal brain region-dependent glycogen accumulation and possibly metabolic heterogeneity of astrocytes. GLIA 2016;64:1532-1545. © 2016 The Authors. Glia Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Glycogen distribution in the microwave‐fixed mouse brain reveals heterogeneous astrocytic patterns

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    Baba, Otto; Ashida, Hitoshi; Nakamura, Kouichi C.

    2016-01-01

    In the brain, glycogen metabolism has been implied in synaptic plasticity and learning, yet the distribution of this molecule has not been fully described. We investigated cerebral glycogen of the mouse by immunohistochemistry (IHC) using two monoclonal antibodies that have different affinities depending on the glycogen size. The use of focused microwave irradiation yielded well‐defined glycogen immunoreactive signals compared with the conventional periodic acid‐Schiff method. The IHC signals displayed a punctate distribution localized predominantly in astrocytic processes. Glycogen immunoreactivity (IR) was high in the hippocampus, striatum, cortex, and cerebellar molecular layer, whereas it was low in the white matter and most of the subcortical structures. Additionally, glycogen distribution in the hippocampal CA3‐CA1 and striatum had a ‘patchy’ appearance with glycogen‐rich and glycogen‐poor astrocytes appearing in alternation. The glycogen patches were more evident with large‐molecule glycogen in young adult mice but they were hardly observable in aged mice (1–2 years old). Our results reveal brain region‐dependent glycogen accumulation and possibly metabolic heterogeneity of astrocytes. GLIA 2016;64:1532–1545 PMID:27353480

  7. Multiple oxygen tension environments reveal diverse patterns of transcriptional regulation in primary astrocytes.

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    Wayne Chadwick

    Full Text Available The central nervous system normally functions at O(2 levels which would be regarded as hypoxic by most other tissues. However, most in vitro studies of neurons and astrocytes are conducted under hyperoxic conditions without consideration of O(2-dependent cellular adaptation. We analyzed the reactivity of astrocytes to 1, 4 and 9% O(2 tensions compared to the cell culture standard of 20% O(2, to investigate their ability to sense and translate this O(2 information to transcriptional activity. Variance of ambient O(2 tension for rat astrocytes resulted in profound changes in ribosomal activity, cytoskeletal and energy-regulatory mechanisms and cytokine-related signaling. Clustering of transcriptional regulation patterns revealed four distinct response pattern groups that directionally pivoted around the 4% O(2 tension, or demonstrated coherent ascending/decreasing gene expression patterns in response to diverse oxygen tensions. Immune response and cell cycle/cancer-related signaling pathway transcriptomic subsets were significantly activated with increasing hypoxia, whilst hemostatic and cardiovascular signaling mechanisms were attenuated with increasing hypoxia. Our data indicate that variant O(2 tensions induce specific and physiologically-focused transcript regulation patterns that may underpin important physiological mechanisms that connect higher neurological activity to astrocytic function and ambient oxygen environments. These strongly defined patterns demonstrate a strong bias for physiological transcript programs to pivot around the 4% O(2 tension, while uni-modal programs that do not, appear more related to pathological actions. The functional interaction of these transcriptional 'programs' may serve to regulate the dynamic vascular responsivity of the central nervous system during periods of stress or heightened activity.

  8. Long-term In Vivo Calcium Imaging of Astrocytes Reveals Distinct Cellular Compartment Responses to Sensory Stimulation.

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    Stobart, Jillian L; Ferrari, Kim David; Barrett, Matthew J P; Stobart, Michael J; Looser, Zoe J; Saab, Aiman S; Weber, Bruno

    2018-01-01

    Localized, heterogeneous calcium transients occur throughout astrocytes, but the characteristics and long-term stability of these signals, particularly in response to sensory stimulation, remain unknown. Here, we used a genetically encoded calcium indicator and an activity-based image analysis scheme to monitor astrocyte calcium activity in vivo. We found that different subcellular compartments (processes, somata, and endfeet) displayed distinct signaling characteristics. Closer examination of individual signals showed that sensory stimulation elevated the number of specific types of calcium peaks within astrocyte processes and somata, in a cortical layer-dependent manner, and that the signals became more synchronous upon sensory stimulation. Although mice genetically lacking astrocytic IP3R-dependent calcium signaling (Ip3r2-/-) had fewer signal peaks, the response to sensory stimulation was sustained, suggesting other calcium pathways are also involved. Long-term imaging of astrocyte populations revealed that all compartments reliably responded to stimulation over several months, but that the location of the response within processes may vary. These previously unknown characteristics of subcellular astrocyte calcium signals provide new insights into how astrocytes may encode local neuronal circuit activity. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Purification and characterization of progenitor and mature human astrocytes reveals transcriptional and functional differences with mouse

    OpenAIRE

    Zhang, Ye; Sloan, Steven A.; Clarke, Laura E.; Caneda, Christine; Plaza, Colton A.; Blumenthal, Paul D.; Vogel, Hannes; Steinberg, Gary K.; Edwards, Michael S. B.; Li, Gordon; Duncan, John A.; Cheshier, Samuel H.; Shuer, Lawrence M.; Chang, Edward F.; Grant, Gerald A.

    2015-01-01

    The functional and molecular similarities and distinctions between human and murine astrocytes are poorly understood. Here we report the development of an immunopanning method to acutely purify astrocytes from fetal, juvenile, and adult human brains, and to maintain these cells in serum-free cultures. We found that human astrocytes have similar abilities to murine astrocytes in promoting neuronal survival, inducing functional synapse formation, and engulfing synaptosomes. In contrast to exist...

  10. Gene expression profiling, pathway analysis and subtype classification reveal molecular heterogeneity in hepatocellular carcinoma and suggest subtype specific therapeutic targets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Rahul; Narayan, Jitendra; Bhattacharyya, Amitava; Saraswat, Mayank; Tomar, Anil Kumar

    2017-10-01

    A very low 5-year survival rate among hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients is mainly due to lack of early stage diagnosis, distant metastasis and high risk of postoperative recurrence. Hence ascertaining novel biomarkers for early diagnosis and patient specific therapeutics is crucial and urgent. Here, we have performed a comprehensive analysis of the expression data of 423 HCC patients (373 tumors and 50 controls) downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) followed by pathway enrichment by gene ontology annotations, subtype classification and overall survival analysis. The differential gene expression analysis using non-parametric Wilcoxon test revealed a total of 479 up-regulated and 91 down-regulated genes in HCC compared to controls. The list of top differentially expressed genes mainly consists of tumor/cancer associated genes, such as AFP, THBS4, LCN2, GPC3, NUF2, etc. The genes over-expressed in HCC were mainly associated with cell cycle pathways. In total, 59 kinases associated genes were found over-expressed in HCC, including TTK, MELK, BUB1, NEK2, BUB1B, AURKB, PLK1, CDK1, PKMYT1, PBK, etc. Overall four distinct HCC subtypes were predicted using consensus clustering method. Each subtype was unique in terms of gene expression, pathway enrichment and median survival. Conclusively, this study has exposed a number of interesting genes which can be exploited in future as potential markers of HCC, diagnostic as well as prognostic and subtype classification may guide for improved and specific therapy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Integrative clustering reveals a novel split in the luminal A subtype of breast cancer with impact on outcome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aure, Miriam Ragle; Vitelli, Valeria; Jernström, Sandra

    2017-01-01

    subtypes revealed six major groups. Five corresponded well with the mRNA subtypes, while a sixth group resulted from a split of the luminal A subtype; these tumors belonged to distinct microRNA clusters. Gain-of-function studies using MCF-7 cells showed that microRNAs differentially expressed between...

  12. Species-Specific Mechanisms of Neuron Subtype Specification Reveal Evolutionary Plasticity of Amniote Brain Development

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    Tadashi Nomura

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Highly ordered brain architectures in vertebrates consist of multiple neuron subtypes with specific neuronal connections. However, the origin of and evolutionary changes in neuron specification mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we report that regulatory mechanisms of neuron subtype specification are divergent in developing amniote brains. In the mammalian neocortex, the transcription factors (TFs Ctip2 and Satb2 are differentially expressed in layer-specific neurons. In contrast, these TFs are co-localized in reptilian and avian dorsal pallial neurons. Multi-potential progenitors that produce distinct neuronal subtypes commonly exist in the reptilian and avian dorsal pallium, whereas a cis-regulatory element of avian Ctip2 exhibits attenuated transcription suppressive activity. Furthermore, the neuronal subtypes distinguished by these TFs are not tightly associated with conserved neuronal connections among amniotes. Our findings reveal the evolutionary plasticity of regulatory gene functions that contribute to species differences in neuronal heterogeneity and connectivity in developing amniote brains. : Neuronal heterogeneity is essential for assembling intricate neuronal circuits. Nomura et al. find that species-specific transcriptional mechanisms underlie diversities of excitatory neuron subtypes in mammalian and non-mammalian brains. Species differences in neuronal subtypes and connections suggest functional plasticity of regulatory genes for neuronal specification during amniote brain evolution. Keywords: Ctip2, Satb2, multi-potential progenitors, transcriptional regulation, neuronal connectivity

  13. Automatic morphological subtyping reveals new roles of caspases in mitochondrial dynamics.

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    Jyh-Ying Peng

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Morphological dynamics of mitochondria is associated with key cellular processes related to aging and neuronal degenerative diseases, but the lack of standard quantification of mitochondrial morphology impedes systematic investigation. This paper presents an automated system for the quantification and classification of mitochondrial morphology. We discovered six morphological subtypes of mitochondria for objective quantification of mitochondrial morphology. These six subtypes are small globules, swollen globules, straight tubules, twisted tubules, branched tubules and loops. The subtyping was derived by applying consensus clustering to a huge collection of more than 200 thousand mitochondrial images extracted from 1422 micrographs of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO cells treated with different drugs, and was validated by evidence of functional similarity reported in the literature. Quantitative statistics of subtype compositions in cells is useful for correlating drug response and mitochondrial dynamics. Combining the quantitative results with our biochemical studies about the effects of squamocin on CHO cells reveals new roles of Caspases in the regulatory mechanisms of mitochondrial dynamics. This system is not only of value to the mitochondrial field, but also applicable to the investigation of other subcellular organelle morphology.

  14. Learning-Induced Gene Expression in the Hippocampus Reveals a Role of Neuron -Astrocyte Metabolic Coupling in Long Term Memory

    KAUST Repository

    Tadi, Monika; Allaman, Igor; Lengacher, Sylvain; Grenningloh, Gabriele; Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2015-01-01

    We examined the expression of genes related to brain energy metabolism and particularly those encoding glia (astrocyte)-specific functions in the dorsal hippocampus subsequent to learning. Context-dependent avoidance behavior was tested in mice using the step-through Inhibitory Avoidance (IA) paradigm. Animals were sacrificed 3, 9, 24, or 72 hours after training or 3 hours after retention testing. The quantitative determination of mRNA levels revealed learning-induced changes in the expression of genes thought to be involved in astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling in a time dependent manner. Twenty four hours following IA training, an enhanced gene expression was seen, particularly for genes encoding monocarboxylate transporters 1 and 4 (MCT1, MCT4), alpha2 subunit of the Na/K-ATPase and glucose transporter type 1. To assess the functional role for one of these genes in learning, we studied MCT1 deficient mice and found that they exhibit impaired memory in the inhibitory avoidance task. Together, these observations indicate that neuron-glia metabolic coupling undergoes metabolic adaptations following learning as indicated by the change in expression of key metabolic genes.

  15. Learning-Induced Gene Expression in the Hippocampus Reveals a Role of Neuron -Astrocyte Metabolic Coupling in Long Term Memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Tadi

    Full Text Available We examined the expression of genes related to brain energy metabolism and particularly those encoding glia (astrocyte-specific functions in the dorsal hippocampus subsequent to learning. Context-dependent avoidance behavior was tested in mice using the step-through Inhibitory Avoidance (IA paradigm. Animals were sacrificed 3, 9, 24, or 72 hours after training or 3 hours after retention testing. The quantitative determination of mRNA levels revealed learning-induced changes in the expression of genes thought to be involved in astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling in a time dependent manner. Twenty four hours following IA training, an enhanced gene expression was seen, particularly for genes encoding monocarboxylate transporters 1 and 4 (MCT1, MCT4, alpha2 subunit of the Na/K-ATPase and glucose transporter type 1. To assess the functional role for one of these genes in learning, we studied MCT1 deficient mice and found that they exhibit impaired memory in the inhibitory avoidance task. Together, these observations indicate that neuron-glia metabolic coupling undergoes metabolic adaptations following learning as indicated by the change in expression of key metabolic genes.

  16. Learning-Induced Gene Expression in the Hippocampus Reveals a Role of Neuron -Astrocyte Metabolic Coupling in Long Term Memory

    KAUST Repository

    Tadi, Monika

    2015-10-29

    We examined the expression of genes related to brain energy metabolism and particularly those encoding glia (astrocyte)-specific functions in the dorsal hippocampus subsequent to learning. Context-dependent avoidance behavior was tested in mice using the step-through Inhibitory Avoidance (IA) paradigm. Animals were sacrificed 3, 9, 24, or 72 hours after training or 3 hours after retention testing. The quantitative determination of mRNA levels revealed learning-induced changes in the expression of genes thought to be involved in astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling in a time dependent manner. Twenty four hours following IA training, an enhanced gene expression was seen, particularly for genes encoding monocarboxylate transporters 1 and 4 (MCT1, MCT4), alpha2 subunit of the Na/K-ATPase and glucose transporter type 1. To assess the functional role for one of these genes in learning, we studied MCT1 deficient mice and found that they exhibit impaired memory in the inhibitory avoidance task. Together, these observations indicate that neuron-glia metabolic coupling undergoes metabolic adaptations following learning as indicated by the change in expression of key metabolic genes.

  17. Astrocyte morphology, heterogeneity and density in the developing African Giant Rat (Cricetomys gambianus

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    James Olukayode Olopade

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Astrocyte morphologies and heterogeneity were described in male African giant rats (AGR (Cricetomys gambianus, Waterhouse across three age groups (5 neonates, 5 juveniles and 5 adults using Silver impregnation method and immunohistochemistry against glia fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP. Immunopositive cell signaling, cell size and population were least in neonates, followed by adults and juveniles respectively. In neonates, astrocyte processes were mostly detected within the glia limitans of the mid and hind brain; their cell bodies measuring 32±4.8 µm in diameter against 91±5.4µm and 75± 1.9µm in juveniles and adults respectively. Astrocyte heterogeneity in juvenile and adult groups revealed eight subtypes to include fibrous astrocytes chiefly in the corpus callosum and brain stem, protoplasmic astrocytes in the cortex and dentate gyrus (DG; radial glia were found along the olfactory bulb (OB and subventricular zone (SVZ; velate astrocytes were mainly found in the cerebellum and hippocampus; marginal astrocytes close to the pia mater; Bergmann glia in the molecular layer of the cerebellum; perivascular and periventricular astrocytes in the cortex and third ventricle respectively. Cell counts from twelve anatomical regions of the brain were significantly higher in juveniles than in adults (p≤0.01 using unpaired student t-test in the cerebral cortex, pia, corpus callosum, rostral migratory stream (RMS, DG and cerebellum. Highest astrocyte count was found in the DG, while the least count was in the brain stem and sub cortex. Astrocytes along the periventricular layer of the OB are believed to be part of the radial glia system that transport newly formed cells towards the hippocampus and play roles in neurogenesis migration and homeostasis in the AGR. Therefore, astrocyte heterogeneity was examined across age groups in the AGR to determine whether age influences astrocytes population in different regions of the AGR brain and discuss

  18. Tight coupling of astrocyte energy metabolism to synaptic activity revealed by genetically encoded FRET nanosensors in hippocampal tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruminot, Iván; Schmälzle, Jana; Leyton, Belén; Barros, L Felipe; Deitmer, Joachim W

    2017-01-01

    The potassium ion, K + , a neuronal signal that is released during excitatory synaptic activity, produces acute activation of glucose consumption in cultured astrocytes, a phenomenon mediated by the sodium bicarbonate cotransporter NBCe1 ( SLC4A4). We have explored here the relevance of this mechanism in brain tissue by imaging the effect of neuronal activity on pH, glucose, pyruvate and lactate dynamics in hippocampal astrocytes using BCECF and FRET nanosensors. Electrical stimulation of Schaffer collaterals produced fast activation of glucose consumption in astrocytes with a parallel increase in intracellular pyruvate and biphasic changes in lactate . These responses were blocked by TTX and were absent in tissue slices prepared from NBCe1-KO mice. Direct depolarization of astrocytes with elevated extracellular K + or Ba 2+ mimicked the metabolic effects of electrical stimulation. We conclude that the glycolytic pathway of astrocytes in situ is acutely sensitive to neuronal activity, and that extracellular K + and the NBCe1 cotransporter are involved in metabolic crosstalk between neurons and astrocytes. Glycolytic activation of astrocytes in response to neuronal K + helps to provide an adequate supply of lactate, a metabolite that is released by astrocytes and which acts as neuronal fuel and an intercellular signal.

  19. Deficits in long-term recognition memory reveal dissociated subtypes in congenital prosopagnosia.

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    Rainer Stollhoff

    Full Text Available The study investigates long-term recognition memory in congenital prosopagnosia (CP, a lifelong impairment in face identification that is present from birth. Previous investigations of processing deficits in CP have mostly relied on short-term recognition tests to estimate the scope and severity of individual deficits. We firstly report on a controlled test of long-term (one year recognition memory for faces and objects conducted with a large group of participants with CP. Long-term recognition memory is significantly impaired in eight CP participants (CPs. In all but one case, this deficit was selective to faces and didn't extend to intra-class recognition of object stimuli. In a test of famous face recognition, long-term recognition deficits were less pronounced, even after accounting for differences in media consumption between controls and CPs. Secondly, we combined test results on long-term and short-term recognition of faces and objects, and found a large heterogeneity in severity and scope of individual deficits. Analysis of the observed heterogeneity revealed a dissociation of CP into subtypes with a homogeneous phenotypical profile. Thirdly, we found that among CPs self-assessment of real-life difficulties, based on a standardized questionnaire, and experimentally assessed face recognition deficits are strongly correlated. Our results demonstrate that controlled tests of long-term recognition memory are needed to fully assess face recognition deficits in CP. Based on controlled and comprehensive experimental testing, CP can be dissociated into subtypes with a homogeneous phenotypical profile. The CP subtypes identified align with those found in prosopagnosia caused by cortical lesions; they can be interpreted with respect to a hierarchical neural system for face perception.

  20. Deficits in long-term recognition memory reveal dissociated subtypes in congenital prosopagnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stollhoff, Rainer; Jost, Jürgen; Elze, Tobias; Kennerknecht, Ingo

    2011-01-25

    The study investigates long-term recognition memory in congenital prosopagnosia (CP), a lifelong impairment in face identification that is present from birth. Previous investigations of processing deficits in CP have mostly relied on short-term recognition tests to estimate the scope and severity of individual deficits. We firstly report on a controlled test of long-term (one year) recognition memory for faces and objects conducted with a large group of participants with CP. Long-term recognition memory is significantly impaired in eight CP participants (CPs). In all but one case, this deficit was selective to faces and didn't extend to intra-class recognition of object stimuli. In a test of famous face recognition, long-term recognition deficits were less pronounced, even after accounting for differences in media consumption between controls and CPs. Secondly, we combined test results on long-term and short-term recognition of faces and objects, and found a large heterogeneity in severity and scope of individual deficits. Analysis of the observed heterogeneity revealed a dissociation of CP into subtypes with a homogeneous phenotypical profile. Thirdly, we found that among CPs self-assessment of real-life difficulties, based on a standardized questionnaire, and experimentally assessed face recognition deficits are strongly correlated. Our results demonstrate that controlled tests of long-term recognition memory are needed to fully assess face recognition deficits in CP. Based on controlled and comprehensive experimental testing, CP can be dissociated into subtypes with a homogeneous phenotypical profile. The CP subtypes identified align with those found in prosopagnosia caused by cortical lesions; they can be interpreted with respect to a hierarchical neural system for face perception.

  1. Linking social and spatial networks to viral community phylogenetics reveals subtype-specific transmission dynamics in African lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fountain-Jones, Nicholas M; Packer, Craig; Troyer, Jennifer L; VanderWaal, Kimberly; Robinson, Stacie; Jacquot, Maude; Craft, Meggan E

    2017-10-01

    Heterogeneity within pathogen species can have important consequences for how pathogens transmit across landscapes; however, discerning different transmission routes is challenging. Here, we apply both phylodynamic and phylogenetic community ecology techniques to examine the consequences of pathogen heterogeneity on transmission by assessing subtype-specific transmission pathways in a social carnivore. We use comprehensive social and spatial network data to examine transmission pathways for three subtypes of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV Ple ) in African lions (Panthera leo) at multiple scales in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. We used FIV Ple molecular data to examine the role of social organization and lion density in shaping transmission pathways and tested to what extent vertical (i.e., father- and/or mother-offspring relationships) or horizontal (between unrelated individuals) transmission underpinned these patterns for each subtype. Using the same data, we constructed subtype-specific FIV Ple co-occurrence networks and assessed what combination of social networks, spatial networks or co-infection best structured the FIV Ple network. While social organization (i.e., pride) was an important component of FIV Ple transmission pathways at all scales, we find that FIV Ple subtypes exhibited different transmission pathways at within- and between-pride scales. A combination of social and spatial networks, coupled with consideration of subtype co-infection, was likely to be important for FIV Ple transmission for the two major subtypes, but the relative contribution of each factor was strongly subtype-specific. Our study provides evidence that pathogen heterogeneity is important in understanding pathogen transmission, which could have consequences for how endemic pathogens are managed. Furthermore, we demonstrate that community phylogenetic ecology coupled with phylodynamic techniques can reveal insights into the differential evolutionary pressures acting

  2. Spatial organization of NG2 glial cells and astrocytes in rat hippocampal CA1 region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Guangjin; Wang, Wei; Zhou, Min

    2014-04-01

    Similar to astrocytes, NG2 glial cells are uniformly distributed in the central nervous system (CNS). However, little is known about the interspatial relationship, nor the functional interactions between these two star-shaped glial subtypes. Confocal morphometric analysis showed that NG2 immunostained cells are spatially organized as domains in rat hippocampal CA1 region and that each NG2 glial domain occupies a spatial volume of ∼178, 364 μm(3) . The processes of NG2 glia and astrocytes overlap extensively; each NG2 glial domain interlaces with the processes deriving from 5.8 ± 0.4 neighboring astrocytes, while each astrocytic domain accommodates processes stemming from 4.5 ± 0.3 abutting NG2 glia. In CA1 stratum radiatum, the cell bodies of morphologically identified glial cells often appear to make direct somatic-somata contact, termed as doublets. We used dual patch recording and postrecording NG2/GFAP double staining to determine the glial identities of these doublets. We show that among 44 doublets, 50% were NG2 glia-astrocyte pairs, while another 38.6% and 11.4% were astrocyte-astrocyte and NG2 glia-NG2 glia pairs, respectively. In dual patch recording, neither electrical coupling nor intercellular biocytin transfer was detected in astrocyte-NG2 glia or NG2 glia-NG2 glia doublets. Altogether, although NG2 glia and astrocytes are not gap junction coupled, their cell bodies and processes are interwoven extensively. The anatomical and physiological relationships revealed in this study should facilitate future studies to understand the metabolic coupling and functional communication between NG2 glia and astrocytes. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Connexin Hemichannels in Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Brian Skriver; Hansen, Daniel Bloch; Ransom, Bruce R.

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes in the mammalian central nervous system are interconnected by gap junctions made from connexins of the subtypes Cx30 and Cx43. These proteins may exist as hemichannels in the plasma membrane in the absence of a ‘docked’ counterpart on the neighboring cell. A variety of stimuli are repo...... selectivity. We expect that some, or all, of the controversies discussed here will be resolved by future research and sincerely hope that this review serves to motivate such clarifying investigations.......Astrocytes in the mammalian central nervous system are interconnected by gap junctions made from connexins of the subtypes Cx30 and Cx43. These proteins may exist as hemichannels in the plasma membrane in the absence of a ‘docked’ counterpart on the neighboring cell. A variety of stimuli....... Published studies about astrocyte hemichannel behavior, however, have been highly variable and/or contradictory. The field of connexin hemichannel research has been complicated by great variability in the experimental preparations employed, a lack of highly specific pharmacological inhibitors...

  4. Characterization of 1577 primary prostate cancers reveals novel biological and clinicopathologic insights into molecular subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomlins, Scott A; Alshalalfa, Mohammed; Davicioni, Elai; Erho, Nicholas; Yousefi, Kasra; Zhao, Shuang; Haddad, Zaid; Den, Robert B; Dicker, Adam P; Trock, Bruce J; DeMarzo, Angelo M; Ross, Ashley E; Schaeffer, Edward M; Klein, Eric A; Magi-Galluzzi, Cristina; Karnes, R Jeffrey; Jenkins, Robert B; Feng, Felix Y

    2015-10-01

    Prostate cancer (PCa) molecular subtypes have been defined by essentially mutually exclusive events, including ETS gene fusions (most commonly involving ERG) and SPINK1 overexpression. Clinical assessment may aid in disease stratification, complementing available prognostic tests. To determine the analytical validity and clinicopatholgic associations of microarray-based molecular subtyping. We analyzed Affymetrix GeneChip expression profiles for 1577 patients from eight radical prostatectomy cohorts, including 1351 cases assessed using the Decipher prognostic assay (GenomeDx Biosciences, San Diego, CA, USA) performed in a laboratory with Clinical Laboratory Improvements Amendment certification. A microarray-based (m-) random forest ERG classification model was trained and validated. Outlier expression analysis was used to predict other mutually exclusive non-ERG ETS gene rearrangements (ETS(+)) or SPINK1 overexpression (SPINK1(+)). Associations with clinical features and outcomes by multivariate logistic regression analysis and receiver operating curves. The m-ERG classifier showed 95% accuracy in an independent validation subset (155 samples). Across cohorts, 45% of PCas were classified as m-ERG(+), 9% as m-ETS(+), 8% as m-SPINK1(+), and 38% as triple negative (m-ERG(-)/m-ETS(-)/m-SPINK1(-)). Gene expression profiling supports three underlying molecularly defined groups: m-ERG(+), m-ETS(+), and m-SPINK1(+)/triple negative. On multivariate analysis, m-ERG(+) tumors were associated with lower preoperative serum prostate-specific antigen and Gleason scores, but greater extraprostatic extension (p<0.001). m-ETS(+) tumors were associated with seminal vesicle invasion (p=0.01), while m-SPINK1(+)/triple negative tumors had higher Gleason scores and were more frequent in Black/African American patients (p<0.001). Clinical outcomes were not significantly different among subtypes. A clinically available prognostic test (Decipher) can also assess PCa molecular subtypes

  5. Astrocytes in endocannabinoid signalling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete, Marta; Díez, Adolfo; Araque, Alfonso

    2014-10-19

    Astrocytes are emerging as integral functional components of synapses, responding to synaptically released neurotransmitters and regulating synaptic transmission and plasticity. Thus, they functionally interact with neurons establishing tripartite synapses: a functional concept that refers to the existence of communication between astrocytes and neurons and its crucial role in synaptic function. Here, we discuss recent evidence showing that astrocytes are involved in the endocannabinoid (ECB) system, responding to exogenous cannabinoids as well as ECBs through activation of type 1 cannabinoid receptors, which increase intracellular calcium and stimulate the release of glutamate that modulates synaptic transmission and plasticity. We also discuss the consequences of ECB signalling in tripartite synapses on the astrocyte-mediated regulation of synaptic function, which reveal novel properties of synaptic regulation by ECBs, such as the spatially controlled dual effect on synaptic strength and the lateral potentiation of synaptic efficacy. Finally, we discuss the potential implications of ECB signalling for astrocytes in brain pathology and animal behaviour. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  6. Genotyping of Mycoplasma pneumoniae clinical isolates reveals eight P1 subtypes within two genomic groups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dorigo-Zetsma, J. W.; Dankert, J.; Zaat, S. A.

    2000-01-01

    Three methods for genotyping of Mycoplasma pneumoniae clinical isolates were applied to 2 reference strains and 21 clinical isolates. By a modified restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis of PCR products of the M. pneumoniae cytadhesin P1 gene, 5 subtypes were discriminated among 13

  7. Glutamate mediated astrocytic filtering of neuronal activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilad Wallach

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Neuron-astrocyte communication is an important regulatory mechanism in various brain functions but its complexity and role are yet to be fully understood. In particular, the temporal pattern of astrocyte response to neuronal firing has not been fully characterized. Here, we used neuron-astrocyte cultures on multi-electrode arrays coupled to Ca2+ imaging and explored the range of neuronal stimulation frequencies while keeping constant the amount of stimulation. Our results reveal that astrocytes specifically respond to the frequency of neuronal stimulation by intracellular Ca2+ transients, with a clear onset of astrocytic activation at neuron firing rates around 3-5 Hz. The cell-to-cell heterogeneity of the astrocyte Ca2+ response was however large and increasing with stimulation frequency. Astrocytic activation by neurons was abolished with antagonists of type I metabotropic glutamate receptor, validating the glutamate-dependence of this neuron-to-astrocyte pathway. Using a realistic biophysical model of glutamate-based intracellular calcium signaling in astrocytes, we suggest that the stepwise response is due to the supralinear dynamics of intracellular IP3 and that the heterogeneity of the responses may be due to the heterogeneity of the astrocyte-to-astrocyte couplings via gap junction channels. Therefore our results present astrocyte intracellular Ca2+ activity as a nonlinear integrator of glutamate-dependent neuronal activity.

  8. Glutamate Mediated Astrocytic Filtering of Neuronal Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herzog, Nitzan; De Pittà, Maurizio; Jacob, Eshel Ben; Berry, Hugues; Hanein, Yael

    2014-01-01

    Neuron-astrocyte communication is an important regulatory mechanism in various brain functions but its complexity and role are yet to be fully understood. In particular, the temporal pattern of astrocyte response to neuronal firing has not been fully characterized. Here, we used neuron-astrocyte cultures on multi-electrode arrays coupled to Ca2+ imaging and explored the range of neuronal stimulation frequencies while keeping constant the amount of stimulation. Our results reveal that astrocytes specifically respond to the frequency of neuronal stimulation by intracellular Ca2+ transients, with a clear onset of astrocytic activation at neuron firing rates around 3-5 Hz. The cell-to-cell heterogeneity of the astrocyte Ca2+ response was however large and increasing with stimulation frequency. Astrocytic activation by neurons was abolished with antagonists of type I metabotropic glutamate receptor, validating the glutamate-dependence of this neuron-to-astrocyte pathway. Using a realistic biophysical model of glutamate-based intracellular calcium signaling in astrocytes, we suggest that the stepwise response is due to the supralinear dynamics of intracellular IP3 and that the heterogeneity of the responses may be due to the heterogeneity of the astrocyte-to-astrocyte couplings via gap junction channels. Therefore our results present astrocyte intracellular Ca2+ activity as a nonlinear integrator of glutamate-dependent neuronal activity. PMID:25521344

  9. Correlative STED and Atomic Force Microscopy on Live Astrocytes Reveals Plasticity of Cytoskeletal Structure and Membrane Physical Properties during Polarized Migration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathalie Rouach

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The plasticity of the cytoskeleton architecture and membrane properties is important for the establishment of cell polarity, adhesion and migration. Here, we present a method which combines stimulated emission depletion (STED super-resolution imaging and atomic force microscopy (AFM to correlate cytoskeletal structural information with membrane physical properties in live astrocytes. Using STED compatible dyes for live cell imaging of the cytoskeleton, and simultaneously mapping the cell surface topology with AFM, we obtain unprecedented detail of highly organized networks of actin and microtubules in astrocytes. Combining mechanical data from AFM with optical imaging of actin and tubulin further reveals links between cytoskeleton organization and membrane properties. Using this methodology we illustrate that scratch-induced migration induces cytoskeleton remodeling. The latter is caused by a polarization of actin and microtubule elements within astroglial cell processes, which correlates strongly with changes in cell stiffness. The method opens new avenues for the dynamic probing of the membrane structural and functional plasticity of living brain cells. It is a powerful tool for providing new insights into mechanisms of cell structural remodeling during physiological or pathological processes, such as brain development or tumorigenesis.

  10. Laser-scanning astrocyte mapping reveals increased glutamate-responsive domain size and disrupted maturation of glutamate uptake following neonatal cortical freeze-lesion

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    Mortiz eArmbruster

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytic uptake of glutamate shapes extracellular neurotransmitter dynamics, receptor activation, and synaptogenesis. During development, glutamate transport becomes more robust. How neonatal brain insult affects the functional maturation of glutamate transport remains unanswered. Neonatal brain insult can lead to developmental delays, cognitive losses, and epilepsy; the disruption of glutamate transport is known to cause changes in synaptogenesis, receptor activation, and seizure. Using the neonatal freeze-lesion (FL model, we have investigated how insult affects the maturation of astrocytic glutamate transport. As lesioning occurs on the day of birth, a time when astrocytes are still functionally immature, this model is ideal for identifying changes in astrocyte maturation following insult. Reactive astrocytosis, astrocyte proliferation, and in vitro hyperexcitability are known to occur in this model. To probe astrocyte glutamate transport with better spatial precision we have developed a novel technique, Laser Scanning Astrocyte Mapping (LSAM, which combines glutamate transport current (TC recording from astrocytes with laser scanning glutamate photolysis. LSAM allows us to identify the area from which a single astrocyte can transport glutamate and to quantify spatial heterogeneity in the rate of glutamate clearance kinetics within that domain. Using LSAM, we report that cortical astrocytes have an increased glutamate-responsive area following FL and that TCs have faster decay times in distal, as compared to proximal processes. Furthermore, the developmental shift from GLAST- to GLT-1-dominated clearance is disrupted following FL. These findings introduce a novel method to probe astrocyte glutamate uptake and show that neonatal cortical FL disrupts the functional maturation of cortical astrocytes.

  11. Genetic deletion of cdc42 reveals a crucial role for astrocyte recruitment to the injury site in vitro and in vivo

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Robel, Stefanie; Bardehle, Sophia; Lepier, Alexandra

    2011-01-01

    signals, the small RhoGTPase Cdc42, selectively in mouse astrocytes in vitro and in vivo. We used an in vitro scratch assay as a minimal wounding model and found that astrocytes lacking Cdc42 (Cdc42Δ) were still able to form protrusions, although in a nonoriented way. Consequently, they failed to migrate...... in a directed manner toward the scratch. When animals were injured in vivo through a stab wound, Cdc42Δ astrocytes developed protrusions properly oriented toward the lesion, but the number of astrocytes recruited to the lesion site was significantly reduced. Surprisingly, however, lesions in Cdc42Δ animals...

  12. Molecular Subtyping of Primary Prostate Cancer Reveals Specific and Shared Target Genes of Different ETS Rearrangements

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Paulo

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available This work aimed to evaluate whether ETS transcription factors frequently involved in rearrangements in prostate carcinomas (PCa, namely ERG and ETV1, regulate specific or shared target genes. We performed differential expression analysis on nine normal prostate tissues and 50 PCa enriched for different ETS rearrangements using exon-level expression microarrays, followed by in vitro validation using cell line models. We found specific deregulation of 57 genes in ERG-positive PCa and 15 genes in ETV1-positive PCa, whereas deregulation of 27 genes was shared in both tumor subtypes. We further showed that the expression of seven tumor-associated ERG target genes (PLA1A, CACNA1D, ATP8A2, HLA-DMB, PDE3B, TDRD1, and TMBIM1 and two tumor-associated ETV1 target genes (FKBP10 and GLYATL2 was significantly affected by specific ETS silencing in VCaP and LNCaP cell line models, respectively, whereas the expression of three candidate ERG and ETV1 shared targets (GRPR, KCNH8, and TMEM45B was significantly affected by silencing of either ETS. Interestingly, we demonstrate that the expression of TDRD1, the topmost overexpressed gene of our list of ERG-specific candidate targets, is inversely correlated with the methylation levels of a CpG island found at -66 bp of the transcription start site in PCa and that TDRD1 expression is regulated by direct binding of ERG to the CpG island in VCaP cells. We conclude that ETS transcription factors regulate specific and shared target genes and that TDRD1, FKBP10, and GRPR are promising therapeutic targets and can serve as diagnostic markers for molecular subtypes of PCa harboring specific fusion gene rearrangements.

  13. Genome wide analysis of acute myeloid leukemia reveal leukemia specific methylome and subtype specific hypomethylation of repeats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marwa H Saied

    Full Text Available Methylated DNA immunoprecipitation followed by high-throughput sequencing (MeDIP-seq has the potential to identify changes in DNA methylation important in cancer development. In order to understand the role of epigenetic modulation in the development of acute myeloid leukemia (AML we have applied MeDIP-seq to the DNA of 12 AML patients and 4 normal bone marrows. This analysis revealed leukemia-associated differentially methylated regions that included gene promoters, gene bodies, CpG islands and CpG island shores. Two genes (SPHKAP and DPP6 with significantly methylated promoters were of interest and further analysis of their expression showed them to be repressed in AML. We also demonstrated considerable cytogenetic subtype specificity in the methylomes affecting different genomic features. Significantly distinct patterns of hypomethylation of certain interspersed repeat elements were associated with cytogenetic subtypes. The methylation patterns of members of the SINE family tightly clustered all leukemic patients with an enrichment of Alu repeats with a high CpG density (P<0.0001. We were able to demonstrate significant inverse correlation between intragenic interspersed repeat sequence methylation and gene expression with SINEs showing the strongest inverse correlation (R(2 = 0.7. We conclude that the alterations in DNA methylation that accompany the development of AML affect not only the promoters, but also the non-promoter genomic features, with significant demethylation of certain interspersed repeat DNA elements being associated with AML cytogenetic subtypes. MeDIP-seq data were validated using bisulfite pyrosequencing and the Infinium array.

  14. Nitric Oxide in Astrocyte-Neuron Signaling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Nianzhen [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2002-01-01

    Astrocytes, a subtype of glial cell, have recently been shown to exhibit Ca2+ elevations in response to neurotransmitters. A Ca2+ elevation can propagate to adjacent astrocytes as a Ca2+ wave, which allows an astrocyte to communicate with its neighbors. Additionally, glutamate can be released from astrocytes via a Ca2+-dependent mechanism, thus modulating neuronal activity and synaptic transmission. In this dissertation, the author investigated the roles of another endogenous signal, nitric oxide (NO), in astrocyte-neuron signaling. First the author tested if NO is generated during astrocytic Ca2+ signaling by imaging NO in purified murine cortical astrocyte cultures. Physiological concentrations of a natural messenger, ATP, caused a Ca2+-dependent NO production. To test the roles of NO in astrocytic Ca2+ signaling, the author applied NO to astrocyte cultures via addition of a NO donor, S-nitrosol-N-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP). NO induced an influx of external Ca2+, possibly through store-operated Ca2+ channels. The NO-induced Ca2+ signaling is cGMP-independent since 8-Br-cGMP, an agonistic analog of cGMP, did not induce a detectable Ca2+ change. The consequence of this NO-induced Ca2+ influx was assessed by simultaneously monitoring of cytosolic and internal store Ca2+ using fluorescent Ca2+ indicators x-rhod-1 and mag-fluo-4. Blockage of NO signaling with the NO scavenger PTIO significantly reduced the refilling percentage of internal stores following ATP-induced Ca2+ release, suggesting that NO modulates internal store refilling. Furthermore, locally photo-release of NO to a single astrocyte led to a Ca2+ elevation in the stimulated astrocyte and a subsequent Ca2+ wave to neighbors. Finally, the author tested the role of NO inglutamate-mediated astrocyte-neuron signaling by

  15. Endocannabinoids mediate neuron-astrocyte communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete, Marta; Araque, Alfonso

    2008-03-27

    Cannabinoid receptors play key roles in brain function, and cannabinoid effects in brain physiology and drug-related behavior are thought to be mediated by receptors present in neurons. Neuron-astrocyte communication relies on the expression by astrocytes of neurotransmitter receptors. Yet, the expression of cannabinoid receptors by astrocytes in situ and their involvement in the neuron-astrocyte communication remain largely unknown. We show that hippocampal astrocytes express CB1 receptors that upon activation lead to phospholipase C-dependent Ca2+ mobilization from internal stores. These receptors are activated by endocannabinoids released by neurons, increasing astrocyte Ca2+ levels, which stimulate glutamate release that activates NMDA receptors in pyramidal neurons. These results demonstrate the existence of endocannabinoid-mediated neuron-astrocyte communication, revealing that astrocytes are targets of cannabinoids and might therefore participate in the physiology of cannabinoid-related addiction. They also reveal the existence of an endocannabinoid-glutamate signaling pathway where astrocytes serve as a bridge for nonsynaptic interneuronal communication.

  16. Astrocyte calcium signal and gliotransmission in human brain tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarrete, Marta; Perea, Gertrudis; Maglio, Laura; Pastor, Jesús; García de Sola, Rafael; Araque, Alfonso

    2013-05-01

    Brain function is recognized to rely on neuronal activity and signaling processes between neurons, whereas astrocytes are generally considered to play supportive roles for proper neuronal function. However, accumulating evidence indicates that astrocytes sense and control neuronal and synaptic activity, indicating that neuron and astrocytes reciprocally communicate. While this evidence has been obtained in experimental animal models, whether this bidirectional signaling between astrocytes and neurons occurs in human brain remains unknown. We have investigated the existence of astrocyte-neuron communication in human brain tissue, using electrophysiological and Ca(2+) imaging techniques in slices of the cortex and hippocampus obtained from biopsies from epileptic patients. Cortical and hippocampal human astrocytes displayed spontaneous Ca(2+) elevations that were independent of neuronal activity. Local application of transmitter receptor agonists or nerve electrical stimulation transiently elevated Ca(2+) in astrocytes, indicating that human astrocytes detect synaptic activity and respond to synaptically released neurotransmitters, suggesting the existence of neuron-to-astrocyte communication in human brain tissue. Electrophysiological recordings in neurons revealed the presence of slow inward currents (SICs) mediated by NMDA receptor activation. The frequency of SICs increased after local application of ATP that elevated astrocyte Ca(2+). Therefore, human astrocytes are able to release the gliotransmitter glutamate, which affect neuronal excitability through activation of NMDA receptors in neurons. These results reveal the existence of reciprocal signaling between neurons and astrocytes in human brain tissue, indicating that astrocytes are relevant in human neurophysiology and are involved in human brain function.

  17. Primary cultures of astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lange, Sofie C; Bak, Lasse Kristoffer; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2012-01-01

    During the past few decades of astrocyte research it has become increasingly clear that astrocytes have taken a central position in all central nervous system activities. Much of our new understanding of astrocytes has been derived from studies conducted with primary cultures of astrocytes...... subsequently found in vivo. Nevertheless, primary cultures of astrocytes are an in vitro model that does not fully mimic the complex events occurring in vivo. Here we present an overview of the numerous contributions generated by the use of primary astrocyte cultures to uncover the diverse functions...... of astrocytes. Many of these discoveries would not have been possible to achieve without the use of astrocyte cultures. Additionally, we address and discuss the concerns that have been raised regarding the use of primary cultures of astrocytes as an experimental model system....

  18. A Cross-Species Analysis in Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors Reveals Molecular Subtypes with Distinctive Clinical, Metastatic, Developmental, and Metabolic Characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadanandam, Anguraj; Wullschleger, Stephan; Lyssiotis, Costas A.; Grötzinger, Carsten; Barbi, Stefano; Bersani, Samantha; Körner, Jan; Wafy, Ismael; Mafficini, Andrea; Lawlor, Rita T.; Simbolo, Michele; Asara, John M.; Bläker, Hendrik; Cantley, Lewis C.; Wiedenmann, Bertram; Scarpa, Aldo; Hanahan, Douglas

    2016-01-01

    Seeking to assess the representative and instructive value of an engineered mouse model of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (PanNET) for its cognate human cancer, we profiled and compared mRNA and miRNA transcriptomes of tumors from both. Mouse PanNET tumors could be classified into two distinctive subtypes, well-differentiated islet/insulinoma tumors (IT) and poorly differentiated tumors associated with liver metastases, dubbed metastasis-like primary (MLP). Human PanNETs were independently classified into these same two subtypes, along with a third, specific gene mutation–enriched subtype. The MLP subtypes in human and mouse were similar to liver metastases in terms of miRNA and mRNA transcriptome profiles and signature genes. The human/mouse MLP subtypes also similarly expressed genes known to regulate early pancreas development, whereas the IT subtypes expressed genes characteristic of mature islet cells, suggesting different tumorigenesis pathways. In addition, these subtypes exhibit distinct metabolic profiles marked by differential pyruvate metabolism, substantiating the significance of their separate identities. SIGNIFICANCE This study involves a comprehensive cross-species integrated analysis of multi-omics profiles and histology to stratify PanNETs into subtypes with distinctive characteristics. We provide support for the RIP1-TAG2 mouse model as representative of its cognate human cancer with prospects to better understand PanNET heterogeneity and consider future applications of personalized cancer therapy. PMID:26446169

  19. Astrocytes and energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prebil, Mateja; Jensen, Jørgen; Zorec, Robert; Kreft, Marko

    2011-05-01

    Astrocytes are glial cells, which play a significant role in a number of processes, including the brain energy metabolism. Their anatomical position between blood vessels and neurons make them an interface for effective glucose uptake from blood. After entering astrocytes, glucose can be involved in different metabolic pathways, e.g. in glycogen production. Glycogen in the brain is localized mainly in astrocytes and is an important energy source in hypoxic conditions and normal brain functioning. The portion of glucose metabolized into glycogen molecules in astrocytes is as high as 40%. It is thought that the release of gliotransmitters (such as glutamate, neuroactive peptides and ATP) into the extracellular space by regulated exocytosis supports a significant part of communication between astrocytes and neurons. On the other hand, neurotransmitter action on astrocytes has a significant role in brain energy metabolism. Therefore, understanding the astrocytes energy metabolism may help understanding neuron-astrocyte interactions.

  20. Podocalyxin expression in malignant astrocytic tumors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hayatsu, Norihito; Kaneko, Mika Kato; Mishima, Kazuhiko; Nishikawa, Ryo; Matsutani, Masao; Price, Janet E.; Kato, Yukinari

    2008-01-01

    Podocalyxin is an anti-adhesive mucin-like transmembrane sialoglycoprotein that has been implicated in the development of aggressive forms of cancer. Podocalyxin is also known as keratan sulfate (KS) proteoglycan. Recently, we revealed that highly sulfated KS or another mucin-like transmembrane sialoglycoprotein podoplanin/aggrus is upregulated in malignant astrocytic tumors. The aim of this study is to examine the relationship between podocalyxin expression and malignant progression of astrocytic tumors. In this study, 51 astrocytic tumors were investigated for podocalyxin expression using immunohistochemistry, Western blot analysis, and quantitative real-time PCR. Immunohistochemistry detected podocalyxin on the surface of tumor cells in six of 14 anaplastic astrocytomas (42.9%) and in 17 of 31 glioblastomas (54.8%), especially around proliferating endothelial cells. In diffuse astrocytoma, podocalyxin expression was observed only in vascular endothelial cells. Podocalyxin might be associated with the malignant progression of astrocytic tumors, and be a useful prognostic marker for astrocytic tumors

  1. Transplantation of specific human astrocytes promotes functional recovery after spinal cord injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J A Davies

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Repairing trauma to the central nervous system by replacement of glial support cells is an increasingly attractive therapeutic strategy. We have focused on the less-studied replacement of astrocytes, the major support cell in the central nervous system, by generating astrocytes from embryonic human glial precursor cells using two different astrocyte differentiation inducing factors. The resulting astrocytes differed in expression of multiple proteins thought to either promote or inhibit central nervous system homeostasis and regeneration. When transplanted into acute transection injuries of the adult rat spinal cord, astrocytes generated by exposing human glial precursor cells to bone morphogenetic protein promoted significant recovery of volitional foot placement, axonal growth and notably robust increases in neuronal survival in multiple spinal cord laminae. In marked contrast, human glial precursor cells and astrocytes generated from these cells by exposure to ciliary neurotrophic factor both failed to promote significant behavioral recovery or similarly robust neuronal survival and support of axon growth at sites of injury. Our studies thus demonstrate functional differences between human astrocyte populations and suggest that pre-differentiation of precursor cells into a specific astrocyte subtype is required to optimize astrocyte replacement therapies. To our knowledge, this study is the first to show functional differences in ability to promote repair of the injured adult central nervous system between two distinct subtypes of human astrocytes derived from a common fetal glial precursor population. These findings are consistent with our previous studies of transplanting specific subtypes of rodent glial precursor derived astrocytes into sites of spinal cord injury, and indicate a remarkable conservation from rat to human of functional differences between astrocyte subtypes. In addition, our studies provide a specific population of human

  2. Structure-activity studies of RFamide peptides reveal subtype-selective activation of neuropeptide FF1 and FF2 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Findeisen, Maria; Rathmann, Daniel; Beck-Sickinger, Annette G

    2011-06-06

    Selectivity is a major issue in closely related multiligand/multireceptor systems. In this study we investigated the RFamide systems of hNPFF₁R and hNPFF₂R that bind the endogenous peptide hormones NPFF, NPAF, NPVF, and NPSF. By use of a systematic approach, we characterized the role of the C-terminal dipeptide with respect to agonistic properties using synthesized [Xaa 7]NPFF and [Xaa 8]NPFF analogues. We were able to identify only slight differences in potency upon changing the position of Arg 7, as all modifications resulted in identical behavior at the NPFF₁R and NPFF₂R. However, the C-terminal Phe 8 was able to be replaced by Trp or His with only a minor loss in potency at the NPFF₂R relative to the NPFF₁R. Analogues with shorter side chains, such as α-amino-4-guanidino butyric acid ([Agb 7]NPFF) or phenylglycine ([Phg 8]NPFF), decreased efficacy for the NPFF₁ R to 25-31 % of the maximal response, suggesting that these agonist-receptor complexes are more susceptible to structural modifications. In contrast, mutations to the conserved Asp 6.59 residue in the third extracellular loop of both receptors revealed a higher sensitivity toward the hNPFF₂R receptor than toward hNPFF₁R. These data provide new insight into the subtype-specific agonistic activation of the NPFF₁ and NPFF(2) receptors that are necessary for the development of selective agonists. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. New tools for investigating astrocyte-to-neuron communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Dongdong; Agulhon, Cendra; Schmidt, Elke; Oheim, Martin; Ropert, Nicole

    2013-10-29

    Gray matter protoplasmic astrocytes extend very thin processes and establish close contacts with synapses. It has been suggested that the release of neuroactive gliotransmitters at the tripartite synapse contributes to information processing. However, the concept of calcium (Ca(2+))-dependent gliotransmitter release from astrocytes, and the release mechanisms are being debated. Studying astrocytes in their natural environment is challenging because: (i) astrocytes are electrically silent; (ii) astrocytes and neurons express an overlapping repertoire of transmembrane receptors; (iii) the size of astrocyte processes in contact with synapses are below the resolution of confocal and two-photon microscopes (iv) bulk-loading techniques using fluorescent Ca(2+) indicators lack cellular specificity. In this review, we will discuss some limitations of conventional methodologies and highlight the interest of novel tools and approaches for studying gliotransmission. Genetically encoded Ca(2+) indicators (GECIs), light-gated channels, and exogenous receptors are being developed to selectively read out and stimulate astrocyte activity. Our review discusses emerging perspectives on: (i) the complexity of astrocyte Ca(2+) signaling revealed by GECIs; (ii) new pharmacogenetic and optogenetic approaches to activate specific Ca(2+) signaling pathways in astrocytes; (iii) classical and new techniques to monitor vesicle fusion in cultured astrocytes; (iv) possible strategies to express specifically reporter genes in astrocytes.

  4. New Tools for Investigating Astrocyte-to-Neuron Communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dongdong eLi

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Grey matter protoplasmic astrocytes extend very thin processes and establish close contacts with synapses. It has been suggested that the release of neuroactive gliotransmitters at the tripartite synapse contributes to information processing. However, the concept of calcium (Ca2+-dependent gliotransmitter release from astrocytes, and the release mechanisms are being debated.Studying astrocytes in their natural environment is challenging because: i astrocytes are electrically silent; ii astrocytes and neurons express an overlapping repertoire of transmembrane receptors; iii astrocyte processes in contact with synapses are below confocal and two-photon microscope resolution; iv bulk-loading techniques using fluorescent Ca2+ indicators lack cellular specificity.In this review, we will discuss some limitations of conventional methodologies and highlight the interest of novel tools and approaches for studying gliotransmission. Genetically encoded Ca2+ indicators (GECIs, light-gated channels, and exogenous receptors are being developed to selectively read out and stimulate astrocyte activity. Our review discusses emerging perspectives on: i the complexity of astrocyte Ca2+ signalling revealed by GECIs; ii new pharmacogenetic and optogenetic approaches to activate specific Ca2+ signalling pathways in astrocytes; iii classical and new techniques to monitor vesicle fusion in cultured astrocytes; iv possible strategies to express specifically reporter genes in astrocytes.

  5. Astrocyte Ca2+ signalling: an unexpected complexity

    OpenAIRE

    Volterra, Andrea; Liaudet, Nicolas; Savtchouk, Iaroslav

    2014-01-01

    Astrocyte Ca(2+) signalling has been proposed to link neuronal information in different spatial-temporal dimensions to achieve a higher level of brain integration. However, some discrepancies in the results of recent studies challenge this view and highlight key insufficiencies in our current understanding. In parallel, new experimental approaches that enable the study of astrocyte physiology at higher spatial-temporal resolution in intact brain preparations are beginning to reveal an unexpec...

  6. Characterization of 1,577 Primary Prostate Cancers Reveals Novel Biological and Clinicopathological Insights into Molecular Subtypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomlins, Scott A.; Alshalalfa, Mohammed; Davicioni, Elai; Erho, Nicholas; Yousefi, Kasra; Zhao, Shuang; Haddad, Zaid; Den, Robert B.; Dicker, Adam P.; Trock, Bruce; DeMarzo, Angelo; Ross, Ashley; Schaeffer, Edward M.; Klein, Eric A.; Magi-Galluzzi, Cristina; Karnes, Jeffery R.; Jenkins, Robert B.; Feng, Felix Y.

    2015-01-01

    Background Prostate cancer (PCa) molecular subtypes have been defined by essentially mutually exclusive events, including ETS gene fusions (most commonly involving ERG) and SPINK1 over-expression. Clinical assessment may aid in disease stratification, complementing available prognostic tests. Objective To determine the analytical validity and clinicopatholgical associations of microarray-based molecular subtyping. Design, Setting and Participants We analyzed Affymetrix GeneChip expression profiles for 1,577 patients from eight radical prostatectomy (RP) cohorts, including 1,351 cases assessed using the Decipher prognostic assay (performed in a CLIA-certified laboratory). A microarray-based (m-) random forest ERG classification model was trained and validated. Outlier expression analysis was used to predict other mutually exclusive non-ERG ETS gene rearrangements (ETS+) or SPINK1 over-expression (SPINK1+). Outcome Measurements Associations with clinical features and outcomes by multivariable logistic regression analysis and receiver operating curves. Results and Limitations The m-ERG classifier showed 95% accuracy in an independent validation subset (n=155 samples). Across cohorts, 45%, 9%, 8% and 38% of PCa were classified as m-ERG+, m-ETS+, m-SPINK1+, and triple negative (m-ERG−/m-ETS−/m-SPINK1−), respectively. Gene expression profiling supports three underlying molecularly defined groups (m-ERG+, m-ETS+ and m-SPINK1+/triple negative). On multivariable analysis, m-ERG+ tumors were associated with lower preoperative serum PSA and Gleason scores, but enriched for extraprostatic extension (p<0.001). m-ETS+ tumors were associated with seminal vesicle invasion (p=0.01), while m-SPINK1+/triple negative tumors had higher Gleason scores and were more frequent in Black/African American patients (p<0.001). Clinical outcomes were not significantly different between subtypes. Conclusions A clinically available prognostic test (Decipher) can also assess PCa molecular

  7. Comparative genomic analysis reveals occurrence of genetic recombination in virulent Cryptosporidium hominis subtypes and telomeric gene duplications in Cryptosporidium parvum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yaqiong; Tang, Kevin; Rowe, Lori A; Li, Na; Roellig, Dawn M; Knipe, Kristine; Frace, Michael; Yang, Chunfu; Feng, Yaoyu; Xiao, Lihua

    2015-04-18

    Cryptosporidium hominis is a dominant species for human cryptosporidiosis. Within the species, IbA10G2 is the most virulent subtype responsible for all C. hominis-associated outbreaks in Europe and Australia, and is a dominant outbreak subtype in the United States. In recent yearsIaA28R4 is becoming a major new subtype in the United States. In this study, we sequenced the genomes of two field specimens from each of the two subtypes and conducted a comparative genomic analysis of the obtained sequences with those from the only fully sequenced Cryptosporidium parvum genome. Altogether, 8.59-9.05 Mb of Cryptosporidium sequences in 45-767 assembled contigs were obtained from the four specimens, representing 94.36-99.47% coverage of the expected genome. These genomes had complete synteny in gene organization and 96.86-97.0% and 99.72-99.83% nucleotide sequence similarities to the published genomes of C. parvum and C. hominis, respectively. Several major insertions and deletions were seen between C. hominis and C. parvum genomes, involving mostly members of multicopy gene families near telomeres. The four C. hominis genomes were highly similar to each other and divergent from the reference IaA25R3 genome in some highly polymorphic regions. Major sequence differences among the four specimens sequenced in this study were in the 5' and 3' ends of chromosome 6 and the gp60 region, largely the result of genetic recombination. The sequence similarity among specimens of the two dominant outbreak subtypes and genetic recombination in chromosome 6, especially around the putative virulence determinant gp60 region, suggest that genetic recombination plays a potential role in the emergence of hyper-transmissible C. hominis subtypes. The high sequence conservation between C. parvum and C. hominis genomes and significant differences in copy numbers of MEDLE family secreted proteins and insulinase-like proteases indicate that telomeric gene duplications could potentially contribute to

  8. Human astrocytes: structure and functions in the healthy brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasile, Flora; Dossi, Elena; Rouach, Nathalie

    2017-07-01

    Data collected on astrocytes' physiology in the rodent have placed them as key regulators of synaptic, neuronal, network, and cognitive functions. While these findings proved highly valuable for our awareness and appreciation of non-neuronal cell significance in brain physiology, early structural and phylogenic investigations of human astrocytes hinted at potentially different astrocytic properties. This idea sparked interest to replicate rodent-based studies on human samples, which have revealed an analogous but enhanced involvement of astrocytes in neuronal function of the human brain. Such evidence pointed to a central role of human astrocytes in sustaining more complex information processing. Here, we review the current state of our knowledge of human astrocytes regarding their structure, gene profile, and functions, highlighting the differences with rodent astrocytes. This recent insight is essential for assessment of the relevance of findings using animal models and for comprehending the functional significance of species-specific properties of astrocytes. Moreover, since dysfunctional astrocytes have been described in many brain disorders, a more thorough understanding of human-specific astrocytic properties is crucial for better-adapted translational applications.

  9. Astrocytes in development, aging and disease: starring GFAP

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Middeldorp, J.

    2010-01-01

    We show in this thesis that different subtypes of astrocytes comprise specialized GFAP-IF networks, that change during development, aging and Alzheimer’s disease. The novel functions that have emerged for the IF network suggest these changes can play an important part in the specialized function of

  10. Epidemiological study of phylogenetic transmission clusters in a local HIV-1 epidemic reveals distinct differences between subtype B and non-B infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalmet, Kristen; Staelens, Delfien; Blot, Stijn; Dinakis, Sylvie; Pelgrom, Jolanda; Plum, Jean; Vogelaers, Dirk; Vandekerckhove, Linos; Verhofstede, Chris

    2010-09-07

    The number of HIV-1 infected individuals in the Western world continues to rise. More in-depth understanding of regional HIV-1 epidemics is necessary for the optimal design and adequate use of future prevention strategies. The use of a combination of phylogenetic analysis of HIV sequences, with data on patients' demographics, infection route, clinical information and laboratory results, will allow a better characterization of individuals responsible for local transmission. Baseline HIV-1 pol sequences, obtained through routine drug-resistance testing, from 506 patients, newly diagnosed between 2001 and 2009, were used to construct phylogenetic trees and identify transmission-clusters. Patients' demographics, laboratory and clinical data, were retrieved anonymously. Statistical analysis was performed to identify subtype-specific and transmission-cluster-specific characteristics. Multivariate analysis showed significant differences between the 59.7% of individuals with subtype B infection and the 40.3% non-B infected individuals, with regard to route of transmission, origin, infection with Chlamydia (p = 0.01) and infection with Hepatitis C virus (p = 0.017). More and larger transmission-clusters were identified among the subtype B infections (p HIV (p = 0.017). Combination of phylogenetics with demographic information, laboratory and clinical data, revealed that HIV-1 subtype B infected Caucasian men-who-have-sex-with-men with high prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases, account for the majority of local HIV-transmissions. This finding elucidates observed epidemiological trends through molecular analysis, and justifies sustained focus in prevention on this high risk group.

  11. Full-Length Characterization of Hepatitis C Virus Subtype 3a Reveals Novel Hypervariable Regions under Positive Selection during Acute Infection▿

    OpenAIRE

    Humphreys, Isla; Fleming, Vicki; Fabris, Paolo; Parker, Joe; Schulenberg, Bodo; Brown, Anthony; Demetriou, Charis; Gaudieri, Silvana; Pfafferott, Katja; Lucas, Michaela; Collier, Jane; Huang, Kuan-Hsiang Gary; Pybus, Oliver G.; Klenerman, Paul; Barnes, Eleanor

    2009-01-01

    Hepatitis C virus subtype 3a is a highly prevalent and globally distributed strain that is often associated with infection via injection drug use. This subtype exhibits particular phenotypic characteristics. In spite of this, detailed genetic analysis of this subtype has rarely been performed. We performed full-length viral sequence analysis in 18 patients with chronic HCV subtype 3a infection and assessed genomic viral variability in comparison to other HCV subtypes. Two novel regions of int...

  12. Integrated genomic and immunophenotypic classification of pancreatic cancer reveals three distinct subtypes with prognostic/predictive significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wartenberg, Martin; Cibin, Silvia; Zlobec, Inti; Vassella, Erik; Eppenberger-Castori, Serenella M M; Terracciano, Luigi; Eichmann, Micha; Worni, Mathias; Gloor, Beat; Perren, Aurel; Karamitopoulou, Eva

    2018-04-16

    Current clinical classification of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is unable to predict prognosis or response to chemo- or immunotherapy and does not take into account the host reaction to PDAC-cells. Our aim is to classify PDAC according to host- and tumor-related factors into clinically/biologically relevant subtypes by integrating molecular and microenvironmental findings. A well-characterized PDAC-cohort (n=110) underwent next-generation sequencing with a hotspot cancer panel, while Next-generation Tissue-Microarrays were immunostained for CD3, CD4, CD8, CD20, PD-L1, p63, hyaluronan-mediated motility receptor (RHAMM) and DNA mismatch-repair proteins. Previous data on FOXP3 were integrated. Immune-cell counts and protein expression were correlated with tumor-derived driver mutations, clinicopathologic features (TNM 8. 2017), survival and epithelial-mesenchymal-transition (EMT)-like tumor budding.  Results: Three PDAC-subtypes were identified: the "immune-escape" (54%), poor in T- and B-cells and enriched in FOXP3+Tregs, with high-grade budding, frequent CDKN2A- , SMAD4- and PIK3CA-mutations and poor outcome; the "immune-rich" (35%), rich in T- and B-cells and poorer in FOXP3+Tregs, with infrequent budding, lower CDKN2A- and PIK3CA-mutation rate and better outcome and a subpopulation with tertiary lymphoid tissue (TLT), mutations in DNA damage response genes (STK11, ATM) and the best outcome; and the "immune-exhausted" (11%) with immunogenic microenvironment and two subpopulations: one with PD-L1-expression and high PIK3CA-mutation rate and a microsatellite-unstable subpopulation with high prevalence of JAK3-mutations. The combination of low budding, low stromal FOXP3-counts, presence of TLTs and absence of CDKN2A-mutations confers significant survival advantage in PDAC-patients. Immune host responses correlate with tumor characteristics leading to morphologically recognizable PDAC-subtypes with prognostic/predictive significance. Copyright ©2018

  13. RNA Localization in Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Rune

    2012-01-01

    , regulation of the blood brain barrier and glial scar tissue formation. Despite the involvement in various CNS functions only a limited number of studies have addressed mRNA localization in astrocytes. This PhD project was initially focused on developing and implementing methods that could be used to asses mRNA......Messenger RNA (mRNA) localization is a mechanism by which polarized cells can regulate protein synthesis to specific subcellular compartments in a spatial and temporal manner, and plays a pivotal role in multiple physiological processes from embryonic development to cell differentiation...... localization in astrocyte protrusions, and following look into the subcellular localization pattern of specific mRNA species of both primary astrocytes isolated from cortical hemispheres of newborn mice, and the mouse astrocyte cell line, C8S. The Boyden chamber cell fractionation assay was optimized, in a way...

  14. Novel cell separation method for molecular analysis of neuron-astrocyte cocultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea eGoudriaan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Over the last decade, the importance of astrocyte-neuron communication in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity has become increasingly clear. Since neuron-astrocyte interactions represent highly dynamic and reciprocal processes, we hypothesized that many astrocyte genes may be regulated as a consequence of their interactions with maturing neurons. In order to identify such neuron-responsive astrocyte genes in vitro, we sought to establish an expedite technique for separation of neurons from co-cultured astrocytes. Our newly established method makes use of cold jet, which exploits different adhesion characteristics of subpopulations of cells (Jirsova et al., 1997, and is rapid, performed under ice-cold conditions and avoids protease-mediated isolation of astrocytes or time-consuming centrifugation, yielding intact astrocyte mRNA with approximately 90% of neuronal RNA removed. Using this purification method, we executed genome-wide profiling in which RNA derived from astrocyte-only cultures was compared with astrocyte RNA derived from differentiating neuron-astrocyte co-cultures. Data analysis determined that many astrocytic mRNAs and biological processes are regulated by neuronal interaction. Our results validate the cold jet as an efficient method to separate astrocytes from neurons in co-culture, and reveals that neurons induce robust gene-expression changes in co-cultured astrocytes.

  15. Acute treatment with 17beta-estradiol attenuates astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-neuron communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Shilpa P; Sikdar, Sujit Kumar

    2007-12-01

    Astrocytes are now recognized as dynamic signaling elements in the brain. Bidirectional communication between neurons and astrocytes involves integration of neuronal inputs by astrocytes and release of gliotransmitters that modulate neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. The ovarian steroid hormone, 17beta-estradiol, in addition to its rapid actions on neuronal electrical activity can rapidly alter astrocyte intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) through a membrane-associated estrogen receptor. Using calcium imaging and electrophysiological techniques, we investigated the functional consequences of acute treatment with estradiol on astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-neuron communication in mixed hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of an astrocyte evoked a [Ca2+]i rise in the stimulated astrocyte, which propagated to the surrounding astrocytes as a [Ca2+]i wave. Following acute treatment with estradiol, the amplitude of the [Ca2+]i elevation in astrocytes around the stimulated astrocyte was attenuated. Further, estradiol inhibited the [Ca2+]i rise in individual astrocytes in response to the metabotropic glutamate receptor agonist, trans-(+/-)-1-amino-1,3-cyclopentanedicarboxylic acid. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes induced [Ca2+]i elevations and electrophysiological responses in adjacent neurons. Estradiol rapidly attenuated the astrocyte-evoked glutamate-mediated [Ca2+]i rise and slow inward current in neurons. Also, the incidence of astrocyte-induced increase in spontaneous postsynaptic current frequency was reduced in the presence of estradiol. The effects of estradiol were stereo-specific and reversible following washout. These findings may indicate that the regulation of neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission by astrocytes is sensitive to rapid estradiol-mediated hormonal control. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Novel MeCP2 isoform-specific antibody reveals the endogenous MeCP2E1 expression in murine brain, primary neurons and astrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robby M Zachariah

    Full Text Available Rett Syndrome (RTT is a severe neurological disorder in young females, and is caused by mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene. MECP2/Mecp2 gene encodes for two protein isoforms; MeCP2E1 and MeCP2E2 that are identical except for the N-terminus region of the protein. In brain, MECP2E1 transcripts are 10X higher, and MeCP2E1 is suggested to be the relevant isoform for RTT. However, due to the unavailability of MeCP2 isoform-specific antibodies, the endogenous expression pattern of MeCP2E1 is unknown. To gain insight into the expression of MeCP2E1 in brain, we have developed an anti-MeCP2E1 antibody and validated its specificity in cells exogenously expressing individual MeCP2 isoforms. This antibody does not show any cross-reactivity with MeCP2E2 and detects endogenous MeCP2E1 in mice brain, with no signal in Mecp2(tm1.1Bird y/- null mice. Additionally, we show the endogenous MeCP2E1 expression throughout different brain regions in adult mice, and demonstrate its highest expression in the brain cortex. Our results also indicate that MeCP2E1 is highly expressed in primary neurons, as compared to primary astrocytes. This is the first report of the endogenous MeCP2E1 expression at the protein levels, providing novel avenues for understanding different aspects of MeCP2 function.

  17. Sex Differences and Laterality in Astrocyte Number and Complexity in the Adult Rat Medial Amygdala

    Science.gov (United States)

    JOHNSON, RYAN T.; BREEDLOVE, S. MARC; JORDAN, CYNTHIA L.

    2008-01-01

    The posterodorsal portion of the medial amygdala (MePD) is sexually dimorphic in several rodent species. In several other brain nuclei, astrocytes change morphology in response to steroid hormones. We visualized MePD astrocytes using glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunocytochemistry. We compared the number and process complexity of MePD astrocytes in adult wildtype male and female rats and testicular feminized mutant (TFM) male rats that lack functional androgen receptors (ARs) to determine whether MePD astrocytes are sexually differentiated and whether ARs have a role. Unbiased stereological methods revealed laterality and sex differences in MePD astrocyte number and complexity. The right MePD contained more astrocytes than the left in all three genotypes, and the number of astrocytes was also sexually differentiated in the right MePD, with males having more astrocytes than females. In contrast, the left MePD contained more complex astrocytes than did the right MePD in all three genotypes, and males had more complex astrocytes than females in this hemisphere. TFM males were comparable to wildtype females, having fewer astrocytes on the right and simpler astrocytes on the left than do wildtype males. Taken together, these results demonstrate that astrocytes are sexually dimorphic in the adult MePD and that the nature of the sex difference is hemisphere-dependent: a sex difference in astrocyte number in the right MePD and a sex difference in astrocyte complexity in the left MePD. Moreover, functional ARs appear to be critical in establishing these sex differences in MePD astrocyte morphology. PMID:18853427

  18. Neuroinflammation alters voltage-dependent conductance in striatal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karpuk, Nikolay; Burkovetskaya, Maria; Kielian, Tammy

    2012-07-01

    Neuroinflammation has the capacity to alter normal central nervous system (CNS) homeostasis and function. The objective of the present study was to examine the effects of an inflammatory milieu on the electrophysiological properties of striatal astrocyte subpopulations with a mouse bacterial brain abscess model. Whole cell patch-clamp recordings were performed in striatal glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-green fluorescent protein (GFP)(+) astrocytes neighboring abscesses at postinfection days 3 or 7 in adult mice. Cell input conductance (G(i)) measurements spanning a membrane potential (V(m)) surrounding resting membrane potential (RMP) revealed two prevalent astrocyte subsets. A1 and A2 astrocytes were identified by negative and positive G(i) increments vs. V(m), respectively. A1 and A2 astrocytes displayed significantly different RMP, G(i), and cell membrane capacitance that were influenced by both time after bacterial exposure and astrocyte proximity to the inflammatory site. Specifically, the percentage of A1 astrocytes was decreased immediately surrounding the inflammatory lesion, whereas A2 cells were increased. These changes were particularly evident at postinfection day 7, revealing increased cell numbers with an outward current component. Furthermore, RMP was inversely modified in A1 and A2 astrocytes during neuroinflammation, and resting G(i) was increased from 21 to 30 nS in the latter. In contrast, gap junction communication was significantly decreased in all astrocyte populations associated with inflamed tissues. Collectively, these findings demonstrate the heterogeneity of striatal astrocyte populations, which experience distinct electrophysiological modifications in response to CNS inflammation.

  19. Multi-lipofection efficiently transfected genes into astrocytes in primary culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, B Y; Liu, R Y; So, K L; Yu, A C

    2000-10-30

    This study demonstrated that liposome-mediated transfection - lipofection - is suitable for delivering genes into astrocytes. By repeatedly lipofecting the same astrocyte cultures, a process we call multi-lipofection, the transfection efficiency of the beta-galactosidase (beta-gal) gene was improved from 2.6+/-0.6 to 17. 4+/-1.1%. This is the highest efficiency ever reported in gene-transfer with Lipofectin(R) in a primary culture of mouse cerebral cortical astrocytes. Furthermore, multi-lipofection did not cause observable disturbance to astrocytes as indicated by insignificant changes in the glial fibrillary acidic protein content in the cultures. In order to demonstrate that the transfected gene achieved a physiologically relevant expression level, a plasmid containing the pEF-hsp70 protein gene was lipofected into astrocytes. This produced colonies of astrocytes showing an increased resistance to heat-induced cell death. A similar experiment was performed with the glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) gene. Control astrocytes had no detectable GDNF. In the transfected astrocytes, the GDNF protein could be identified intracellularly by immunocytochemistry. Western blot analysis revealed, as compared to astrocytes with one lipofection, a 2.9-fold increase of GDNF with four lipofections. GDNF remained detectable in astrocytes 2 weeks after four lipofections. Thus, multi-lipofection provides a mild and efficient means of delivering foreign genes into astrocytes in a primary culture, making astrocytes good candidate vehicle cells for gene/cell therapy in the CNS.

  20. Astrocytes in Alzheimer's Disease

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Verkhratsky, Alexei; Olabarria, M.; Noristani, H. N.; Yeh, C. Y.; Rodríguez Arellano, Jose Julio

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 7, č. 4 (2010), s. 399-412 ISSN 1933-7213 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA309/09/1696; GA ČR GA305/08/1384 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50390703 Keywords : Astrocytes * neuroglia * neurodegeneration Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 6.084, year: 2010

  1. Amines, Astrocytes and Arousal

    OpenAIRE

    Bazargani, N.; Attwell, D.

    2017-01-01

    Amine neurotransmitters, such as noradrenaline, mediate arousal, attention, and reward in the CNS. New data suggest that, from flies to mammals, a major mechanism for amine transmitter action is to raise astrocyte [Ca2+]i and release gliotransmitters that modulate neuronal activity and behavior.

  2. Molecular portrait of breast cancer in China reveals comprehensive transcriptomic likeness to Caucasian breast cancer and low prevalence of luminal A subtype

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huang, Xiaoyan; Dugo, Matteo; Callari, Maurizio; Sandri, Marco; De Cecco, Loris; Valeri, Barbara; Carcangiu, Maria Luisa; Xue, Jingyan; Bi, Rui; Veneroni, Silvia; Daidone, Maria Grazia; Ménard, Sylvie; Tagliabue, Elda; Shao, Zhimin; Wu, Jiong; Orlandi, Rosaria

    2015-01-01

    The recent dramatic increase in breast cancer incidence across China with progressive urbanization and economic development has signaled the urgent need for molecular and clinical detailing of breast cancer in the Chinese population. Our analyses of a unique transethnic collection of breast cancer frozen specimens from Shanghai Fudan Cancer Center (Chinese Han) profiled simultaneously with an analogous Caucasian Italian series revealed consistent transcriptomic data lacking in batch effects. The prevalence of Luminal A subtype was significantly lower in Chinese series, impacting the overall prevalence of estrogen receptor (ER)-positive disease in a large cohort of Chinese/Caucasian patients. Unsupervised and supervised comparison of gene and microRNA (miRNA) profiles of Chinese and Caucasian samples revealed extensive similarity in the comprehensive taxonomy of transcriptional elements regulating breast cancer biology. Partition of gene expression data using gene lists relevant to breast cancer as “intrinsic” and “extracellular matrix” genes identified Chinese and Caucasian subgroups with equivalent global gene and miRNA profiles. These findings indicate that in the Chinese and Caucasian groups, breast neoplasia and the surrounding stromal characteristics undergo the same differentiation and molecular processes. Transcriptional similarity across transethnic cohorts may simplify translational medicine approaches and clinical management of breast cancer patients worldwide

  3. Versatile and simple approach to determine astrocyte territories in mouse neocortex and hippocampus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antje Grosche

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Besides their neuronal support functions, astrocytes are active partners in neuronal information processing. The typical territorial structure of astrocytes (the volume of neuropil occupied by a single astrocyte is pivotal for many aspects of glia-neuron interactions. METHODS: Individual astrocyte territorial volumes are measured by Golgi impregnation, and astrocyte densities are determined by S100β immunolabeling. These data are compared with results from conventionally applied methods such as dye filling and determination of the density of astrocyte networks by biocytin loading. Finally, we implemented our new approach to investigate age-related changes in astrocyte territories in the cortex and hippocampus of 5- and 21-month-old mice. RESULTS: The data obtained by our simplified approach based on Golgi impregnation were compared to previously published dye filling experiments, and yielded remarkably comparable results regarding astrocyte territorial volumes. Moreover, we found that almost all coupled astrocytes (as indicated by biocytin loading were immunopositive for S100β. A first application of this new experimental approach gives insight in age-dependent changes in astrocyte territorial volumes. They increased with age, while cell densities remained stable. In 5-month-old mice, the overlap factor was close to 1, revealing little or no interdigitation of astrocyte territories. However, in 21-month-old mice, the overlap factor was more than 2, suggesting that processes of adjacent astrocytes interdigitate. CONCLUSION: Here we verified the usability of a simple, versatile method for assessing astrocyte territories and the overlap factor between adjacent territories. Second, we found that there is an age-related increase in territorial volumes of astrocytes that leads to loss of the strict organization in non-overlapping territories. Future studies should elucidate the physiological relevance of this adaptive reaction of

  4. Synaptically evoked glutamate transporter currents in Spinal Dorsal Horn Astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dougherty Patrick M

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Removing and sequestering synaptically released glutamate from the extracellular space is carried out by specific plasma membrane transporters that are primarily located in astrocytes. Glial glutamate transporter function can be monitored by recording the currents that are produced by co-transportation of Na+ ions with the uptake of glutamate. The goal of this study was to characterize glutamate transporter function in astrocytes of the spinal cord dorsal horn in real time by recording synaptically evoked glutamate transporter currents. Results Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were obtained from astrocytes in the spinal substantia gelatinosa (SG area in spinal slices of young adult rats. Glutamate transporter currents were evoked in these cells by electrical stimulation at the spinal dorsal root entry zone in the presence of bicuculline, strychnine, DNQX and D-AP5. Transporter currents were abolished when synaptic transmission was blocked by TTX or Cd2+. Pharmacological studies identified two subtypes of glutamate transporters in spinal astrocytes, GLAST and GLT-1. Glutamate transporter currents were graded with stimulus intensity, reaching peak responses at 4 to 5 times activation threshold, but were reduced following low-frequency (0.1 – 1 Hz repetitive stimulation. Conclusion These results suggest that glutamate transporters of spinal astrocytes could be activated by synaptic activation, and recording glutamate transporter currents may provide a means of examining the real time physiological responses of glial cells in spinal sensory processing, sensitization, hyperalgesia and chronic pain.

  5. Subtyping adolescents with bulimia nervosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Eunice Y; Le Grange, Daniel

    2007-12-01

    Cluster analyses of eating disorder patients have yielded a "dietary-depressive" subtype, typified by greater negative affect, and a "dietary" subtype, typified by dietary restraint. This study aimed to replicate these findings in an adolescent sample with bulimia nervosa (BN) from a randomized controlled trial and to examine the validity and reliability of this methodology. In the sample of BN adolescents (N=80), cluster analysis revealed a "dietary-depressive" subtype (37.5%) and a "dietary" subtype (62.5%) using the Beck Depression Inventory, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale and Eating Disorder Examination Restraint subscale. The "dietary-depressive" subtype compared to the "dietary" subtype was significantly more likely to: (1) report co-occurring disorders, (2) greater eating and weight concerns, and (3) less vomiting abstinence at post-treatment (all p'sreliability of the subtyping scheme, a larger sample of adolescents with mixed eating and weight disorders in an outpatient eating disorder clinic (N=149) was subtyped, yielding similar subtypes. These results support the validity and reliability of the subtyping strategy in two adolescent samples.

  6. Fluoxetin Upregulates Connexin 43 Expression in Astrocyte

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hossein Mostafavi

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Recent studies have shown that astrocytes play major roles in normal and disease condition of the central nervous system including multiple sclerosis (MS. Molecular target therapy studies in MS have revealed that connexin-43 (Cx43 and Aquaporin-4 (AQP4 contents of astrocytes undergo expression alteration. Fluoxetine had some effects in MS patients unrelated to its known antidepressant effects. Some of fluoxetine effects were attributed to its capability of cAMP signaling pathway stimulation. This study aimed to investigate possible acute effects of fluoxetine on Cx43 and AQP4 expression in astrocyte.  Methods: Astrocytoma cells were treated for 24 hours with fluoxetine (10 and 20 &mug/ml with or without adenyl cyclase (AC and protein kinase A (PKA inhibition. Cx43 expression at both mRNA and protein levels and AQP4 expression at mRNA level were evaluated.  Results: Acquired results showed that fluoxetine with and without AC and PKA inhibition resulted in Cx43 up-regulation both in mRNA and protein levels, whereas AQP4 expression have not changed.  Discussion: In conclusion, data showed that fluoxetine alone and in the absence of serotonin acutely up-regulated Cx43 expression in astrocytes that can be assumed in molecular target therapy of MS patients. It seems that cAMP involvement in fluoxetine effects need more researches.

  7. Subcellular location of astrocytic calcium stores favors extrasynaptic neuron-astrocyte communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patrushev, Ilya; Gavrilov, Nikolay; Turlapov, Vadim; Semyanov, Alexey

    2013-11-01

    Neuron-astrocyte interactions are important for brain computations and synaptic plasticity. Perisynaptic astrocytic processes (PAPs) contain a high density of transporters that are responsible for neurotransmitter clearance. Metabotropic glutamate receptors are thought to trigger Ca(2+) release from Ca(2+) stores in PAPs in response to synaptic activity. Our ultrastructural study revealed that PAPs are actually devoid of Ca(2+) stores and have a high surface-to-volume ratio favorable for uptake. Astrocytic processes containing Ca(2+) stores were located further away from the synapses and could therefore respond to changes in ambient glutamate. Thus, the anatomic data do not support communication involving Ca(2+) stores in tripartite synapses, but rather point to extrasynaptic communication. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Characterisation of the expression of NMDA receptors in human astrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming-Chak Lee

    Full Text Available Astrocytes have long been perceived only as structural and supporting cells within the central nervous system (CNS. However, the discovery that these glial cells may potentially express receptors capable of responding to endogenous neurotransmitters has resulted in the need to reassess astrocytic physiology. The aim of the current study was to characterise the expression of NMDA receptors (NMDARs in primary human astrocytes, and investigate their response to physiological and excitotoxic concentrations of the known endogenous NMDAR agonists, glutamate and quinolinic acid (QUIN. Primary cultures of human astrocytes were used to examine expression of these receptors at the mRNA level using RT-PCR and qPCR, and at the protein level using immunocytochemistry. The functionality role of the receptors was assessed using intracellular calcium influx experiments and measuring extracellular lactate dehydrogenase (LDH activity in primary cultures of human astrocytes treated with glutamate and QUIN. We found that all seven currently known NMDAR subunits (NR1, NR2A, NR2B, NR2C, NR2D, NR3A and NR3B are expressed in astrocytes, but at different levels. Calcium influx studies revealed that both glutamate and QUIN could activate astrocytic NMDARs, which stimulates Ca2+ influx into the cell and can result in dysfunction and death of astrocytes. Our data also show that the NMDAR ion channel blockers, MK801, and memantine can attenuate glutamate and QUIN mediated cell excitotoxicity. This suggests that the mechanism of glutamate and QUIN gliotoxicity is at least partially mediated by excessive stimulation of NMDARs. The present study is the first to provide definitive evidence for the existence of functional NMDAR expression in human primary astrocytes. This discovery has significant implications for redefining the cellular interaction between glia and neurons in both physiological processes and pathological conditions.

  9. SOX2 Reprograms Resident Astrocytes into Neural Progenitors in the Adult Brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenze Niu

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Glial cells can be in vivo reprogrammed into functional neurons in the adult CNS; however, the process by which this reprogramming occurs is unclear. Here, we show that a distinct cellular sequence is involved in SOX2-driven in situ conversion of adult astrocytes to neurons. This includes ASCL1+ neural progenitors and DCX+ adult neuroblasts (iANBs as intermediates. Importantly, ASCL1 is required, but not sufficient, for the robust generation of iANBs in the adult striatum. These progenitor-derived iANBs predominantly give rise to calretinin+ interneurons when supplied with neurotrophic factors or the small-molecule valproic acid. Patch-clamp recordings from the induced neurons reveal subtype heterogeneity, though all are functionally mature, fire repetitive action potentials, and receive synaptic inputs. Together, these results show that SOX2-mediated in vivo reprogramming of astrocytes to neurons passes through proliferative intermediate progenitors, which may be exploited for regenerative medicine.

  10. Evidence for heterogeneity of astrocyte de-differentiation in vitro: astrocytes transform into intermediate precursor cells following induction of ACM from scratch-insulted astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Hao; Qian, Xin-Hong; Cong, Rui; Li, Jing-wen; Yao, Qin; Jiao, Xi-Ying; Ju, Gong; You, Si-Wei

    2010-04-01

    Our previous study definitely demonstrated that the mature astrocytes could undergo a de-differentiation process and further transform into pluripotential neural stem cells (NSCs), which might well arise from the effect of diffusible factors released from scratch-insulted astrocytes. However, these neurospheres passaged from one neurosphere-derived from de-differentiated astrocytes possessed a completely distinct characteristic in the differentiation behavior, namely heterogeneity of differentiation. The heterogeneity in cell differentiation has become a crucial but elusive issue. In this study, we show that purified astrocytes could de-differentiate into intermediate precursor cells (IPCs) with addition of scratch-insulted astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) to the culture, which can express NG2 and A2B5, the IPCs markers. Apart from the number of NG2(+) and A2B5(+) cells, the percentage of proliferative cells as labeled with BrdU progressively increased with prolonged culture period ranging from 1 to 10 days. Meanwhile, the protein level of A2B5 in cells also increased significantly. These results revealed that not all astrocytes could de-differentiate fully into NSCs directly when induced by ACM, rather they generated intermediate or more restricted precursor cells that might undergo progressive de-differentiation to generate NSCs.

  11. Identification of diverse astrocyte populations and their malignant analogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    John Lin, Chia-Ching; Yu, Kwanha; Hatcher, Asante; Huang, Teng-Wei; Lee, Hyun Kyoung; Carlson, Jeffrey; Weston, Matthew C; Chen, Fengju; Zhang, Yiqun; Zhu, Wenyi; Mohila, Carrie A; Ahmed, Nabil; Patel, Akash J; Arenkiel, Benjamin R; Noebels, Jeffrey L; Creighton, Chad J; Deneen, Benjamin

    2017-03-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell type in the brain, where they perform a wide array of functions, yet the nature of their cellular heterogeneity and how it oversees these diverse roles remains shrouded in mystery. Using an intersectional fluorescence-activated cell sorting-based strategy, we identified five distinct astrocyte subpopulations present across three brain regions that show extensive molecular diversity. Application of this molecular insight toward function revealed that these populations differentially support synaptogenesis between neurons. We identified correlative populations in mouse and human glioma and found that the emergence of specific subpopulations during tumor progression corresponded with the onset of seizures and tumor invasion. In sum, we have identified subpopulations of astrocytes in the adult brain and their correlates in glioma that are endowed with diverse cellular, molecular and functional properties. These populations selectively contribute to synaptogenesis and tumor pathophysiology, providing a blueprint for understanding diverse astrocyte contributions to neurological disease.

  12. Astrocytes mediate synapse elimination through MEGF10 and MERTK pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Won-Suk; Clarke, Laura E.; Wang, Gordon X.; Stafford, Benjamin K.; Sher, Alexander; Chakraborty, Chandrani; Joung, Julia; Foo, Lynette C.; Thompson, Andrew; Chen, Chinfei; Smith, Stephen J.; Barres, Ben A.

    2013-12-01

    To achieve its precise neural connectivity, the developing mammalian nervous system undergoes extensive activity-dependent synapse remodelling. Recently, microglial cells have been shown to be responsible for a portion of synaptic pruning, but the remaining mechanisms remain unknown. Here we report a new role for astrocytes in actively engulfing central nervous system synapses. This process helps to mediate synapse elimination, requires the MEGF10 and MERTK phagocytic pathways, and is strongly dependent on neuronal activity. Developing mice deficient in both astrocyte pathways fail to refine their retinogeniculate connections normally and retain excess functional synapses. Finally, we show that in the adult mouse brain, astrocytes continuously engulf both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. These studies reveal a novel role for astrocytes in mediating synapse elimination in the developing and adult brain, identify MEGF10 and MERTK as critical proteins in the synapse remodelling underlying neural circuit refinement, and have important implications for understanding learning and memory as well as neurological disease processes.

  13. Calcium imaging of living astrocytes in the mouse spinal cord following sensory stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cirillo, Giovanni; De Luca, Daniele; Papa, Michele

    2012-01-01

    Astrocytic Ca(2+) dynamics have been extensively studied in ex vivo models; however, the recent development of two-photon microscopy and astrocyte-specific labeling has allowed the study of Ca(2+) signaling in living central nervous system. Ca(2+) waves in astrocytes have been described in cultured cells and slice preparations, but evidence for astrocytic activation during sensory activity is lacking. There are currently few methods to image living spinal cord: breathing and heart-beating artifacts have impeded the widespread application of this technique. We here imaged the living spinal cord by two-photon microscopy in C57BL6/J mice. Through pressurized injection, we specifically loaded spinal astrocytes using the red fluorescent dye sulforhodamine 101 (SR101) and imaged astrocytic Ca(2+) levels with Oregon-Green BAPTA-1 (OGB). Then, we studied astrocytic Ca(2+) levels at rest and after right electrical hind paw stimulation. Sensory stimulation significantly increased astrocytic Ca(2+) levels within the superficial dorsal horn of the spinal cord compared to rest. In conclusion, in vivo morphofunctional imaging of living astrocytes in spinal cord revealed that astrocytes actively participate to sensory stimulation.

  14. Astrocytic gap junctional networks suppress cellular damage in an in vitro model of ischemia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo, E-mail: mnuriya@z2.keio.jp

    2014-02-07

    Highlights: • Astrocytes exhibit characteristic changes in [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} under OGD. • Astrocytic [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase is synchronized with a neuronal anoxic depolarization. • Gap junctional couplings protect neurons as well as astrocytes during OGD. - Abstract: Astrocytes play pivotal roles in both the physiology and the pathophysiology of the brain. They communicate with each other via extracellular messengers as well as through gap junctions, which may exacerbate or protect against pathological processes in the brain. However, their roles during the acute phase of ischemia and the underlying cellular mechanisms remain largely unknown. To address this issue, we imaged changes in the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}) in astrocytes in mouse cortical slices under oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) condition using two-photon microscopy. Under OGD, astrocytes showed [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} oscillations followed by larger and sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increases. While the pharmacological blockades of astrocytic receptors for glutamate and ATP had no effect, the inhibitions of gap junctional intercellular coupling between astrocytes significantly advanced the onset of the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase after OGD exposure. Interestingly, the simultaneous recording of the neuronal membrane potential revealed that the onset of the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase in astrocytes was synchronized with the appearance of neuronal anoxic depolarization. Furthermore, the blockade of gap junctional coupling resulted in a concurrent faster appearance of neuronal depolarizations, which remain synchronized with the sustained [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} increase in astrocytes. These results indicate that astrocytes delay the appearance of the pathological responses of astrocytes and neurons through their gap junction-mediated intercellular network under OGD. Thus, astrocytic gap junctional networks provide protection against tissue damage

  15. Astrocytic gap junctional networks suppress cellular damage in an in vitro model of ischemia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Astrocytes exhibit characteristic changes in [Ca 2+ ] i under OGD. • Astrocytic [Ca 2+ ] i increase is synchronized with a neuronal anoxic depolarization. • Gap junctional couplings protect neurons as well as astrocytes during OGD. - Abstract: Astrocytes play pivotal roles in both the physiology and the pathophysiology of the brain. They communicate with each other via extracellular messengers as well as through gap junctions, which may exacerbate or protect against pathological processes in the brain. However, their roles during the acute phase of ischemia and the underlying cellular mechanisms remain largely unknown. To address this issue, we imaged changes in the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca 2+ ] i ) in astrocytes in mouse cortical slices under oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) condition using two-photon microscopy. Under OGD, astrocytes showed [Ca 2+ ] i oscillations followed by larger and sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increases. While the pharmacological blockades of astrocytic receptors for glutamate and ATP had no effect, the inhibitions of gap junctional intercellular coupling between astrocytes significantly advanced the onset of the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase after OGD exposure. Interestingly, the simultaneous recording of the neuronal membrane potential revealed that the onset of the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase in astrocytes was synchronized with the appearance of neuronal anoxic depolarization. Furthermore, the blockade of gap junctional coupling resulted in a concurrent faster appearance of neuronal depolarizations, which remain synchronized with the sustained [Ca 2+ ] i increase in astrocytes. These results indicate that astrocytes delay the appearance of the pathological responses of astrocytes and neurons through their gap junction-mediated intercellular network under OGD. Thus, astrocytic gap junctional networks provide protection against tissue damage during the acute phase of ischemia

  16. Astrocytic GABA transporter activity modulates excitatory neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boddum, Kim; Jensen, Thomas P.; Magloire, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    unrecognized role for the astrocytic GABA transporter, GAT-3. GAT-3 activity results in a rise in astrocytic Na(+) concentrations and a consequent increase in astrocytic Ca(2+) through Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchange. This leads to the release of ATP/adenosine by astrocytes, which then diffusely inhibits neuronal...

  17. Structure/Function Studies of the α4 Subunit Reveal Evolutionary Loss of a GlyR Subtype Involved in Startle and Escape Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Leacock

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Inhibitory glycine receptors (GlyRs are pentameric ligand-gated anion channels with major roles in startle disease/hyperekplexia (GlyR α1, cortical neuronal migration/autism spectrum disorder (GlyR α2, and inflammatory pain sensitization/rhythmic breathing (GlyR α3. However, the role of the GlyR α4 subunit has remained enigmatic, because the corresponding human gene (GLRA4 is thought to be a pseudogene due to an in-frame stop codon at position 390 within the fourth membrane-spanning domain (M4. Despite this, a recent genetic study has implicated GLRA4 in intellectual disability, behavioral problems and craniofacial anomalies. Analyzing data from sequenced genomes, we found that GlyR α4 subunit genes are predicted to be intact and functional in the majority of vertebrate species—with the exception of humans. Cloning of human GlyR α4 cDNAs excluded alternative splicing and RNA editing as mechanisms for restoring a full-length GlyR α4 subunit. Moreover, artificial restoration of the missing conserved arginine (R390 in the human cDNA was not sufficient to restore GlyR α4 function. Further bioinformatic and mutagenesis analysis revealed an additional damaging substitution at K59 that ablates human GlyR α4 function, which is not present in other vertebrate GlyR α4 sequences. The substitutions K59 and X390 were also present in the genome of an ancient Denisovan individual, indicating that GLRA4 has been a pseudogene for at least 30,000–50,000 years. In artificial synapses, we found that both mouse and gorilla α4β GlyRs mediate synaptic currents with unusually slow decay kinetics. Lastly, to gain insights into the biological role of GlyR α4 function, we studied the duplicated genes glra4a and glra4b in zebrafish. While glra4b expression is restricted to the retina, using a novel tol2-GAL4FF gene trap line (SAIGFF16B, we found that the zebrafish GlyR α4a subunit gene (glra4a is strongly expressed in spinal cord and hindbrain commissural

  18. Astrocytic GABA Transporters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Arne; Wellendorph, Petrine; Frølund, Bente

    2017-01-01

    , and several of these compounds have been shown to exhibit pronounced anticonvulsant activity in a variety of animal seizure models. As proof of concept of the validity of this drug development approach, one GABA-transport inhibitor, tiagabine, has been developed as a clinically active antiepileptic drug......Inactivation of GABA-mediated neurotransmission is achieved by high-affinity transporters located at both GABAergic neurons and the surrounding astrocytes. Early studies of the pharmacological properties of neuronal and glial GABA transporters suggested that different types of transporters might...... be expressed in the two cell types, and such a scenario was confirmed by the cloning of four distinctly different GABA transporters from a number of different species. These GABA-transport entities have been extensively characterized using a large number of GABA analogues of restricted conformation...

  19. Layer-specific morphological and molecular differences in neocortical astrocytes and their dependence on neuronal layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanjakornsiripan, Darin; Pior, Baek-Jun; Kawaguchi, Daichi; Furutachi, Shohei; Tahara, Tomoaki; Katsuyama, Yu; Suzuki, Yutaka; Fukazawa, Yugo; Gotoh, Yukiko

    2018-04-24

    Non-pial neocortical astrocytes have historically been thought to comprise largely a nondiverse population of protoplasmic astrocytes. Here we show that astrocytes of the mouse somatosensory cortex manifest layer-specific morphological and molecular differences. Two- and three-dimensional observations revealed that astrocytes in the different layers possess distinct morphologies as reflected by differences in cell orientation, territorial volume, and arborization. The extent of ensheathment of synaptic clefts by astrocytes in layer II/III was greater than that by those in layer VI. Moreover, differences in gene expression were observed between upper-layer and deep-layer astrocytes. Importantly, layer-specific differences in astrocyte properties were abrogated in reeler and Dab1 conditional knockout mice, in which neuronal layers are disturbed, suggesting that neuronal layers are a prerequisite for the observed morphological and molecular differences of neocortical astrocytes. This study thus demonstrates the existence of layer-specific interactions between neurons and astrocytes, which may underlie their layer-specific functions.

  20. Astrocyte, the star avatar: redefined

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Srinivas

    LIF, leukaemia inhibitory factor; LTP, long-term potentiation; MBP, myelin basic protein; MCP, ... In short, astrocytes are multifunctional, efficient housekeeping cells that help neurons become ..... memory, synaptic plasticity and induction of LTP.

  1. Complete genome sequence of a novel H9N2 subtype influenza virus FJG9 strain in China reveals a natural reassortant event.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Qingmei; Yan, Zhuanqiang; Ji, Jun; Zhang, Huanmin; Liu, Jun; Sun, Yue; Li, Guangwei; Chen, Feng; Xue, Chunyi; Ma, Jingyun; Bee, Yingzuo

    2012-09-01

    A/chicken/FJ/G9/09 (FJ/G9) is an H9N2 subtype avian influenza virus (H9N2 AIV) strain causing high morbidity that was isolated from broilers in Fujian Province of China in 2009. FJ/G9 has been used as the vaccine strain against H9N2 AIV infection in Fujian Province of China. Here, we report the complete genome sequence of FJ/G9 with natural six-way reassortment, which is the most complex genotype strain in China and even in the world so far. The present findings will aid in understanding the complexity and diversity of H9N2 subtype avian influenza virus.

  2. Microarray data re-annotation reveals specific lncRNAs and their potential functions in non-small cell lung cancer subtypes

    OpenAIRE

    Zhou, Dongbo; Xie, Mingxuan; He, Baimei; Gao, Ying; Yu, Qiao; He, Bixiu; Chen, Qiong

    2017-01-01

    Non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is a leading cause of cancer mortality worldwide. The most common subtypes of NSCLC are adenocarcinoma (AC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). However, the pathophysiological mechanisms contributing to AC and SCC are still largely unknown, especially the roles of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs). The present study identified differentially expressed lncRNAs between lung AC and SCC by re-annotation of NSCLC microarray data analysis profiling. The potential func...

  3. Role of alpha2C-adrenoceptor subtype in spatial working memory as revealed by mice with targeted disruption of the alpha2C-adrenoceptor gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanila, H; Mustonen, K; Sallinen, J; Scheinin, M; Riekkinen, P

    1999-02-01

    The role of the alpha2C-adrenoceptor subtype in mediating the beneficial effect of alpha2-adrenoceptor agonists on spatial working memory was studied in adult mice with targeted inactivation of the alpha2C-receptor gene (KO) and their wild-type controls (WT). A delayed alternation task was run in a T-maze with mixed delays varying from 20 s to 120 s. Dexmedetomidine, a specific but subtype nonselective alpha2-adrenoceptor agonist, dose-dependently decreased the total number of errors. The effect was strongest at the dose of 5 microg/kg (s.c.), and was observed similarly in KO and WT mice. KO mice performed inferior to WT mice due to a higher number of perseverative errors. Dexmedetomidine slowed initiation of the motor response in the start phase at lower doses in WT mice than in KO mice but no such difference was observed in the return phase of the task, suggesting involvement of alpha2C-adrenoceptors in the cognitive aspect of response preparation or in response sequence initiation. According to these findings, enhancement of spatial working memory is best achieved with alpha2-adrenoceptor agonists which have neither agonistic nor antagonistic effects at the alpha2C-adrenoceptor subtype.

  4. Epilepsy and astrocyte energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boison, Detlev; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2018-06-01

    Epilepsy is a complex neurological syndrome characterized by neuronal hyperexcitability and sudden, synchronized electrical discharges that can manifest as seizures. It is now increasingly recognized that impaired astrocyte function and energy homeostasis play key roles in the pathogenesis of epilepsy. Excessive neuronal discharges can only happen, if adequate energy sources are made available to neurons. Conversely, energy depletion during seizures is an endogenous mechanism of seizure termination. Astrocytes control neuronal energy homeostasis through neurometabolic coupling. In this review, we will discuss how astrocyte dysfunction in epilepsy leads to distortion of key metabolic and biochemical mechanisms. Dysfunctional glutamate metabolism in astrocytes can directly contribute to neuronal hyperexcitability. Closure of astrocyte intercellular gap junction coupling as observed early during epileptogenesis limits activity-dependent trafficking of energy metabolites, but also impairs clearance of the extracellular space from accumulation of K + and glutamate. Dysfunctional astrocytes also increase the metabolism of adenosine, a metabolic product of ATP degradation that broadly inhibits energy-consuming processes as an evolutionary adaptation to conserve energy. Due to the critical role of astroglial energy homeostasis in the control of neuronal excitability, metabolic therapeutic approaches that prevent the utilization of glucose might represent a potent antiepileptic strategy. In particular, high fat low carbohydrate "ketogenic diets" as well as inhibitors of glycolysis and lactate metabolism are of growing interest for the therapy of epilepsy. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Astrocyte-like glial cells physiologically regulate olfactory processing through the modification of ORN-PN synaptic strength in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, He; Zhou, Bangyu; Yan, Wenjun; Lei, Zhengchang; Zhao, Xiaoliang; Zhang, Ke; Guo, Aike

    2014-09-01

    Astrocyte-like glial cells are abundant in the central nervous system of adult Drosophila and exhibit morphology similar to astrocytes of mammals. Previous evidence has shown that astrocyte-like glial cells are strongly associated with synapses in the antennal lobe (AL), the first relay of the olfactory system, where olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) transmit information into projection neurons (PNs). However, the function of astrocyte-like glia in the AL remains obscure. In this study, using in vivo calcium imaging, we found that astrocyte-like glial cells exhibited spontaneous microdomain calcium elevations. Using simultaneous manipulation of glial activity and monitoring of neuronal function, we found that the astrocyte-like glial activation, but not ensheathing glial activation, could inhibit odor-evoked responses of PNs. Ensheathing glial cells are another subtype of glia, and are of functional importance in the AL. Electrophysiological experiments indicated that astrocyte-like glial activation decreased the amplitude and slope of excitatory postsynaptic potentials evoked through electrical stimulation of the antennal nerve. These results suggest that astrocyte-like glial cells may regulate olfactory processing through negative regulation of ORN-PN synaptic strength. Beyond the antennal lobe we observed astrocyte-like glial spontaneous calcium activities in the ventromedial protocerebrum, indicating that astrocyte-like glial spontaneous calcium elevations might be general in the adult fly brain. Overall, our study demonstrates a new function for astrocyte-like glial cells in the physiological modulation of olfactory information transmission, possibly through regulating ORN-PN synapse strength. © 2014 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Dysfunctional TCA-Cycle Metabolism in Glutamate Dehydrogenase Deficient Astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nissen, Jakob D; Pajęcka, Kamilla; Stridh, Malin H; Skytt, Dorte M; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2015-12-01

    Astrocytes take up glutamate in the synaptic area subsequent to glutamatergic transmission by the aid of high affinity glutamate transporters. Glutamate is converted to glutamine or metabolized to support intermediary metabolism and energy production. Glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) and aspartate aminotransferase (AAT) catalyze the reversible reaction between glutamate and α-ketoglutarate, which is the initial step for glutamate to enter TCA cycle metabolism. In contrast to GDH, AAT requires a concomitant interconversion of oxaloacetate and aspartate. We have investigated the role of GDH in astrocyte glutamate and glucose metabolism employing siRNA mediated knock down (KD) of GDH in cultured astrocytes using stable and radioactive isotopes for metabolic mapping. An increased level of aspartate was observed upon exposure to [U-(13) C]glutamate in astrocytes exhibiting reduced GDH activity. (13) C Labeling of aspartate and TCA cycle intermediates confirmed that the increased amount of aspartate is associated with elevated TCA cycle flux from α-ketoglutarate to oxaloacetate, i.e. truncated TCA cycle. (13) C Glucose metabolism was elevated in GDH deficient astrocytes as observed by increased de novo synthesis of aspartate via pyruvate carboxylation. In the absence of glucose, lactate production from glutamate via malic enzyme was lower in GDH deficient astrocytes. In conclusions, our studies reveal that metabolism via GDH serves an important anaplerotic role by adding net carbon to the TCA cycle. A reduction in GDH activity seems to cause the astrocytes to up-regulate activity in pathways involved in maintaining the amount of TCA cycle intermediates such as pyruvate carboxylation as well as utilization of alternate substrates such as branched chain amino acids. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Microarray data re-annotation reveals specific lncRNAs and their potential functions in non-small cell lung cancer subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Dongbo; Xie, Mingxuan; He, Baimei; Gao, Ying; Yu, Qiao; He, Bixiu; Chen, Qiong

    2017-10-01

    Non‑small‑cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is a leading cause of cancer mortality worldwide. The most common subtypes of NSCLC are adenocarcinoma (AC) and squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). However, the pathophysiological mechanisms contributing to AC and SCC are still largely unknown, especially the roles of long non‑coding RNAs (lncRNAs). The present study identified differentially expressed lncRNAs between lung AC and SCC by re‑annotation of NSCLC microarray data analysis profiling. The potential functions of lncRNAs were predicted by using coding‑non‑coding gene co‑expressing network. Reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT‑qPCR) was used to investigate lncRNA expression levels in AC cell lines (A549 and L78), SCC cell lines (H226 and H520) and normal cells (NL‑20). Western blotting analysis was used to investigate the protein expression levels in these cell lines. A total of 65 lncRNAs were differentially expressed between AC and SCC including 28 lncRNAs that were downregulated in SCC subtypes compared with those in AC ones, and 37 upregulated lncRNAs in SCC subtypes compared with AC subtypes. Three lncRNAs, sex determining region Y‑box 2 overlapping transcript (SOX2‑OT), NCBP2 antisense RNA 2 (NCBP2‑AS2) and ubiquitin like with PHD and ring finger domains 1 (UHRF1), were predicted to be associated with lung cancer; RT‑qPCR confirmed that SOX2‑OT and NCBP2‑AS2 were associated with lung cancer. Finally, western blot assays demonstrated that there was no difference in β‑catenin and glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK‑3β) expression in cancer cells compared with NL‑20, but increased phosphorylated (p‑)β‑catenin and p‑GSK‑3β was detected in lung cancer cell lines compared with NL‑20, particularly in A549 cells. Although these results require further experimental verification, the analysis of lncRNA signatures between AC and SCC has provided insights into the regulatory mechanism of NSCLC development.

  8. Channel-Mediated Lactate Release by K+-Stimulated Astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Sotelo-Hitschfeld, T.

    2015-03-11

    Excitatory synaptic transmission is accompanied by a local surge in interstitial lactate that occurs despite adequate oxygen availability, a puzzling phenomenon termed aerobic glycolysis. In addition to its role as an energy substrate, recent studies have shown that lactate modulates neuronal excitability acting through various targets, including NMDA receptors and G-protein-coupled receptors specific for lactate, but little is known about the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for the increase in interstitial lactate. Using a panel of genetically encoded fluorescence nanosensors for energy metabolites, we show here that mouse astrocytes in culture, in cortical slices, and in vivo maintain a steady-state reservoir of lactate. The reservoir was released to the extracellular space immediately after exposure of astrocytes to a physiological rise in extracellular K+ or cell depolarization. Cell-attached patch-clamp analysis of cultured astrocytes revealed a 37 pS lactate-permeable ion channel activated by cell depolarization. The channel was modulated by lactate itself, resulting in a positive feedback loop for lactate release. A rapid fall in intracellular lactate levels was also observed in cortical astrocytes of anesthetized mice in response to local field stimulation. The existence of an astrocytic lactate reservoir and its quick mobilization via an ion channel in response to a neuronal cue provides fresh support to lactate roles in neuronal fueling and in gliotransmission.

  9. Dysfunctional TCA-Cycle Metabolism in Glutamate Dehydrogenase Deficient Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nissen, Jakob D; Pajęcka, Kamilla; Stridh, Malin H

    2015-01-01

    aminotransferase (AAT) catalyze the reversible reaction between glutamate and α-ketoglutarate, which is the initial step for glutamate to enter TCA cycle metabolism. In contrast to GDH, AAT requires a concomitant interconversion of oxaloacetate and aspartate. We have investigated the role of GDH in astrocyte...... Labeling of aspartate and TCA cycle intermediates confirmed that the increased amount of aspartate is associated with elevated TCA cycle flux from α-ketoglutarate to oxaloacetate, i.e. truncated TCA cycle. (13) C Glucose metabolism was elevated in GDH deficient astrocytes as observed by increased de novo...... synthesis of aspartate via pyruvate carboxylation. In the absence of glucose, lactate production from glutamate via malic enzyme was lower in GDH deficient astrocytes. In conclusions, our studies reveal that metabolism via GDH serves an important anaplerotic role by adding net carbon to the TCA cycle...

  10. Memory in astrocytes: a hypothesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caudle Robert M

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent work has indicated an increasingly complex role for astrocytes in the central nervous system. Astrocytes are now known to exchange information with neurons at synaptic junctions and to alter the information processing capabilities of the neurons. As an extension of this trend a hypothesis was proposed that astrocytes function to store information. To explore this idea the ion channels in biological membranes were compared to models known as cellular automata. These comparisons were made to test the hypothesis that ion channels in the membranes of astrocytes form a dynamic information storage device. Results Two dimensional cellular automata were found to behave similarly to ion channels in a membrane when they function at the boundary between order and chaos. The length of time information is stored in this class of cellular automata is exponentially related to the number of units. Therefore the length of time biological ion channels store information was plotted versus the estimated number of ion channels in the tissue. This analysis indicates that there is an exponential relationship between memory and the number of ion channels. Extrapolation of this relationship to the estimated number of ion channels in the astrocytes of a human brain indicates that memory can be stored in this system for an entire life span. Interestingly, this information is not affixed to any physical structure, but is stored as an organization of the activity of the ion channels. Further analysis of two dimensional cellular automata also demonstrates that these systems have both associative and temporal memory capabilities. Conclusion It is concluded that astrocytes may serve as a dynamic information sink for neurons. The memory in the astrocytes is stored by organizing the activity of ion channels and is not associated with a physical location such as a synapse. In order for this form of memory to be of significant duration it is necessary

  11. Eph receptors and ephrins in neuron-astrocyte communication at synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murai, Keith K; Pasquale, Elena B

    2011-11-01

    Neuron-glia communication is essential for regulating the properties of synaptic connections in the brain. Astrocytes, in particular, play a critical and complex role in synapse development, maintenance, and plasticity. Likewise, neurons reciprocally influence astrocyte physiology. However, the molecular signaling events that enable astrocytes and neurons to effectively communicate with each other are only partially defined. Recent findings have revealed that Eph receptor tyrosine kinases and ephrins play an important role in contact-dependent neuron-glia communication at synapses. Upon binding, these two families of cell surface-associated proteins trigger bidirectional signaling events that regulate the structural and physiological properties of both neurons and astrocytes. This review will focus on the emerging role of Eph receptors and ephrins in neuron-astrocyte interaction at synapses and discuss implications for synaptic plasticity, behavior, and disease. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  12. Wildtype motoneurons, ALS-Linked SOD1 mutation and glutamate profoundly modify astrocyte metabolism and lactate shuttling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madji Hounoum, Blandine; Mavel, Sylvie; Coque, Emmanuelle; Patin, Franck; Vourc'h, Patrick; Marouillat, Sylviane; Nadal-Desbarats, Lydie; Emond, Patrick; Corcia, Philippe; Andres, Christian R; Raoul, Cédric; Blasco, Hélène

    2017-04-01

    The selective degeneration of motoneuron that typifies amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) implicates non-cell-autonomous effects of astrocytes. However, mechanisms underlying astrocyte-mediated neurotoxicity remain largely unknown. According to the determinant role of astrocyte metabolism in supporting neuronal function, we propose to explore the metabolic status of astrocytes exposed to ALS-associated conditions. We found a significant metabolic dysregulation including purine, pyrimidine, lysine, and glycerophospholipid metabolism pathways in astrocytes expressing an ALS-causing mutated superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1) when co-cultured with motoneurons. SOD1 astrocytes exposed to glutamate revealed a significant modification of the astrocyte metabolic fingerprint. More importantly, we observed that SOD1 mutation and glutamate impact the cellular shuttling of lactate between astrocytes and motoneurons with a decreased in extra- and intra-cellular lactate levels in astrocytes. Based on the emergent strategy of metabolomics, this work provides novel insight for understanding metabolic dysfunction of astrocytes in ALS conditions and opens the perspective of therapeutics targets through focusing on these metabolic pathways. GLIA 2017 GLIA 2017;65:592-605. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Prostaglandin E(2) stimulates glutamate receptor-dependent astrocyte neuromodulation in cultured hippocampal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanzgiri, R P; Araque, A; Haydon, P G

    1999-11-05

    Recent Ca(2+) imaging studies in cell culture and in situ have shown that Ca(2+) elevations in astrocytes stimulate glutamate release and increase neuronal Ca(2+) levels, and that this astrocyte-neuron signaling can be stimulated by prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)). We investigated the electrophysiological consequences of the PGE(2)-mediated astrocyte-neuron signaling using whole-cell recordings on cultured rat hippocampal cells. Focal application of PGE(2) to astrocytes evoked a Ca(2+) elevation in the stimulated cell by mobilizing internal Ca(2+) stores, which further propagated as a Ca(2+) wave to neighboring astrocytes. Whole-cell recordings from neurons revealed that PGE(2) evoked a slow inward current in neurons adjacent to astrocytes. This neuronal response required the presence of an astrocyte Ca(2+) wave and was mediated through both N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and non-NMDA glutamate receptors. Taken together with previous studies, these data demonstrate that PGE(2)-evoked Ca(2+) elevations in astrocyte cause the release of glutamate which activates neuronal ionotropic receptors. Copyright 1999 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  14. Determinants of functional coupling between astrocytes and respiratory neurons in the pre-Bötzinger complex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Schnell

    Full Text Available Respiratory neuronal network activity is thought to require efficient functioning of astrocytes. Here, we analyzed neuron-astrocyte communication in the pre-Bötzinger Complex (preBötC of rhythmic slice preparations from neonatal mice. In astrocytes that exhibited rhythmic potassium fluxes and glutamate transporter currents, we did not find a translation of respiratory neuronal activity into phase-locked astroglial calcium signals. In up to 20% of astrocytes, 2-photon calcium imaging revealed spontaneous calcium fluctuations, although with no correlation to neuronal activity. Calcium signals could be elicited in preBötC astrocytes by metabotropic glutamate receptor activation or after inhibition of glial glutamate uptake. In the latter case, astrocyte calcium elevation preceded a surge of respiratory neuron discharge activity followed by network failure. We conclude that astrocytes do not exhibit respiratory-rhythmic calcium fluctuations when they are able to prevent synaptic glutamate accumulation. Calcium signaling is, however, observed when glutamate transport processes in astrocytes are suppressed or neuronal discharge activity is excessive.

  15. Angiogenin induces modifications in the astrocyte secretome: relevance to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skorupa, Alexandra; Urbach, Serge; Vigy, Oana; King, Matthew A; Chaumont-Dubel, Séverine; Prehn, Jochen H M; Marin, Philippe

    2013-10-08

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease affecting lower and upper motoneurons. Recent studies have shown that both motor neurons and non-neuronal neighbouring cells such as astrocytes and microglia contribute to disease pathology. Loss-of-function mutations in the angiogenin (ANG) gene have been identified in ALS patients. Angiogenin is enriched in motor neurons and exerts neuroprotective effects in vitro and in vivo. We have recently shown that motoneurons secrete angiogenin, and that secreted angiogenin is exclusively taken up by astrocytes, suggesting a paracrine mechanism of neuroprotection. To gain insights into astrocyte effectors of angiogenin-induced neuroprotection, we examined alterations in the astrocyte secretome induced by angiogenin treatment using quantitative proteomics based on Stable Isotope Labelling by Amino Acids in Cell Culture (SILAC). We identified 2128 proteins in conditioned media from primary cultured mouse astrocytes, including 1247 putative secreted proteins. Of these, 60 proteins showed significant regulation of secretion in response to angiogenin stimulation. Regulated proteins include chemokines and cytokines, proteases and protease inhibitors as well as proteins involved in reorganising the extracellular matrix. In conclusion, this proteomic analysis increases our knowledge of the astrocyte secretome and reveals potential molecular substrates underlying the paracrine, neuroprotective effects of angiogenin. This study provides the most extensive list of astrocyte-secreted proteins available and reveals novel potential molecular substrates of astrocyte-neuron communication. It also identifies a set of astrocyte-derived proteins that might slow down ALS disease progression. It should be relevant to a large readership of neuroscientists and clinicians, in particular those with an interest in the physiological and pathological roles of astrocytes and in the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying

  16. Eye Tracking Reveals Abnormal Visual Preference for Geometric Images as an Early Biomarker of an Autism Spectrum Disorder Subtype Associated With Increased Symptom Severity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Karen; Marinero, Steven; Hazin, Roxana; McKenna, Benjamin; Barnes, Cynthia Carter; Malige, Ajith

    2016-04-15

    Clinically and biologically, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is heterogeneous. Unusual patterns of visual preference as indexed by eye tracking are hallmarks; however, whether they can be used to define an early biomarker of ASD as a whole or leveraged to define a subtype is unclear. To begin to examine this issue, large cohorts are required. A sample of 334 toddlers from six distinct groups (115 toddlers with ASD, 20 toddlers with ASD features, 57 toddlers with developmental delay, 53 toddlers with other conditions [e.g., premature birth, prenatal drug exposure], 64 toddlers with typical development, and 25 unaffected toddlers with siblings with ASD) was studied. Toddlers watched a movie containing geometric and social images. Fixation duration and number of saccades within each area of interest and validation statistics for this independent sample were computed. Next, to maximize power, data from our previous study (n = 110) were added for a total of 444 subjects. A subset of toddlers repeated the eye-tracking procedure. As in the original study, a subset of toddlers with ASD fixated on geometric images >69% of the time. Using this cutoff, sensitivity for ASD was 21%, specificity was 98%, and positive predictive value was 86%. Toddlers with ASD who strongly preferred geometric images had 1) worse cognitive, language, and social skills relative to toddlers with ASD who strongly preferred social images and 2) fewer saccades when viewing geometric images. Unaffected siblings of ASD probands did not show evidence of heightened preference for geometric images. Test-retest reliability was good. Examination of age effects suggested that this test may not be appropriate with children >4 years old. Enhanced visual preference for geometric repetition may be an early developmental biomarker of an ASD subtype with more severe symptoms. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Expression of SPIG1 reveals development of a retinal ganglion cell subtype projecting to the medial terminal nucleus in the mouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keisuke Yonehara

    Full Text Available Visual information is transmitted to the brain by roughly a dozen distinct types of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs defined by a characteristic morphology, physiology, and central projections. However, our understanding about how these parallel pathways develop is still in its infancy, because few molecular markers corresponding to individual RGC types are available. Previously, we reported a secretory protein, SPIG1 (clone name; D/Bsp120I #1, preferentially expressed in the dorsal region in the developing chick retina. Here, we generated knock-in mice to visualize SPIG1-expressing cells with green fluorescent protein. We found that the mouse retina is subdivided into two distinct domains for SPIG1 expression and SPIG1 effectively marks a unique subtype of the retinal ganglion cells during the neonatal period. SPIG1-positive RGCs in the dorsotemporal domain project to the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN, superior colliculus, and accessory optic system (AOS. In contrast, in the remaining region, here named the pan-ventronasal domain, SPIG1-positive cells form a regular mosaic and project exclusively to the medial terminal nucleus (MTN of the AOS that mediates the optokinetic nystagmus as early as P1. Their dendrites costratify with ON cholinergic amacrine strata in the inner plexiform layer as early as P3. These findings suggest that these SPIG1-positive cells are the ON direction selective ganglion cells (DSGCs. Moreover, the MTN-projecting cells in the pan-ventronasal domain are apparently composed of two distinct but interdependent regular mosaics depending on the presence or absence of SPIG1, indicating that they comprise two functionally distinct subtypes of the ON DSGCs. The formation of the regular mosaic appears to be commenced at the end of the prenatal stage and completed through the peak period of the cell death at P6. SPIG1 will thus serve as a useful molecular marker for future studies on the development and function of ON DSGCs.

  18. Eye-tracking Reveals Abnormal Visual Preference for Geometric Images as an Early Biomarker of an ASD Subtype Associated with Increased Symptom Severity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Karen; Marinero, Steven; Hazin, Roxana; McKenna, Benjamin; Barnes, Cynthia Carter; Malige, Ajith

    2015-01-01

    Background Clinically and biologically, ASD is heterogeneous. Unusual patterns of visual preference as indexed by eye-tracking are hallmarks, yet whether they can be used to define an early biomarker of ASD as a whole, or leveraged to define a subtype is unclear. To begin to examine this issue, large cohorts are required. Methods A sample of 334 toddlers from 6 distinct groups (115 ASD, 20 ASD-Features, 57 DD, 53 Other, 64 TD, and 25 Typ SIB) participated. Toddlers watched a movie containing both geometric and social images. Fixation duration and number of saccades within each AOI and validation statistics for this independent sample computed. Next, to maximize power, data from our previous study (N=110) was added totaling 444 subjects. A subset of toddlers repeated the eye-tracking procedure. Results As in the original study, a subset of toddlers with ASD fixated on geometric images greater than 69%. Using this cutoff, sensitivity for ASD was 21%, specificity 98%, and PPV 86%. Toddlers with ASD who strongly preferred geometric images had (a) worse cognitive, language, and social skills relative to toddlers with ASD who strongly preferred social images and (b) fewer saccades when viewing geometric images. Unaffected siblings of ASD probands did not show evidence of heightened preference for geometric images. Test-retest reliability was good. Examination of age effects suggest that this test may not be appropriate with children > 4 years. Conclusions Enhanced visual preference for geometric repetition may be an early developmental biomarker of an ASD subtype with more severe symptoms. PMID:25981170

  19. Changes in the Proliferative Program Limit Astrocyte Homeostasis in the Aged Post-Traumatic Murine Cerebral Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heimann, Gábor; Canhos, Luisa L; Frik, Jesica; Jäger, Gabriele; Lepko, Tjasa; Ninkovic, Jovica; Götz, Magdalena; Sirko, Swetlana

    2017-08-01

    Aging leads to adverse outcomes after traumatic brain injury. The mechanisms underlying these defects, however, are not yet clear. In this study, we found that astrocytes in the aged post-traumatic cerebral cortex develop a significantly reduced proliferative response, resulting in reduced astrocyte numbers in the penumbra. Moreover, experiments of reactive astrocytes in vitro reveal that their diminished proliferation is due to an age-related switch in the division mode with reduced cell-cycle re-entry rather than changes in cell-cycle length. Notably, reactive astrocytes in vivo and in vitro become refractory to stimuli increasing their proliferation during aging, such as Sonic hedgehog signaling. These data demonstrate for the first time that age-dependent, most likely intrinsic changes in the proliferative program of reactive astrocytes result in their severely hampered proliferative response to traumatic injury thereby affecting astrocyte homeostasis. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  20. The RNA helicase DDX1 is involved in restricted HIV-1 Rev function in human astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fang Jianhua; Acheampong, Edward; Dave, Rajnish; Wang Fengxiang; Mukhtar, Muhammad; Pomerantz, Roger J.

    2005-01-01

    Productive infection by human immunodeficiency virus type I (HIV-1) in the central nervous system (CNS) involves mainly macrophages and microglial cells. A frequency of less than 10% of human astrocytes is estimated to be infectable with HIV-1. Nonetheless, this relatively low percentage of infected astrocytes, but associated with a large total number of astrocytic cells in the CNS, makes human astrocytes a critical part in the analyses of potential HIV-1 reservoirs in vivo. Investigations in astrocytic cell lines and primary human fetal astrocytes revealed that limited HIV-1 replication in these cells resulted from low-level viral entry, transcription, viral protein processing, and virion maturation. Of note, a low ratio of unspliced versus spliced HIV-1-specific RNA was also investigated, as Rev appeared to act aberrantly in astrocytes, via loss of nuclear and/or nucleolar localization and diminished Rev-mediated function. Host cellular machinery enabling Rev function has become critical for elucidation of diminished Rev activity, especially for those factors leading to RNA metabolism. We have recently identified a DEAD-box protein, DDX1, as a Rev cellular co-factor and now have explored its potential importance in astrocytes. Cells were infected with HIV-1 pseudotyped with envelope glycoproteins of amphotropic murine leukemia viruses (MLV). Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCR) for unspliced, singly-spliced, and multiply-spliced RNA clearly showed a lower ratio of unspliced/singly-spliced over multiply-spliced HIV-1-specific RNA in human astrocytes as compared to Rev-permissive, non-glial control cells. As well, the cellular localization of Rev in astrocytes was cytoplasmically dominant as compared to that of Rev-permissive, non-glial controls. This endogenous level of DDX1 expression in astrocytes was demonstrated directly to lead to a shift of Rev sub-cellular distribution dominance from nuclear and/or nucleolar to

  1. A Computational Model to Investigate Astrocytic Glutamate Uptake Influence on Synaptic Transmission and Neuronal Spiking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sushmita Lakshmi Allam

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Over the past decades, our view of astrocytes has switched from passive support cells to active processing elements in the brain. The current view is that astrocytes shape neuronal communication and also play an important role in many neurodegenerative diseases. Despite the growing awareness of the importance of astrocytes, the exact mechanisms underlying neuron-astrocyte communication and the physiological consequences of astrocytic-neuronal interactions remain largely unclear. In this work, we define a modeling framework that will permit to address unanswered questions regarding the role of astrocytes. Our computational model of a detailed glutamatergic synapse facilitates the analysis of neural system responses to various stimuli and conditions that are otherwise difficult to obtain experimentally, in particular the readouts at the sub-cellular level. In this paper, we extend a detailed glutamatergic synaptic model, to include astrocytic glutamate transporters. We demonstrate how these glial transporters, responsible for the majority of glutamate uptake, modulate synaptic transmission mediated by ionotropic AMPA and NMDA receptors at glutamatergic synapses. Furthermore, we investigate how these local signaling effects at the synaptic level are translated into varying spatio-temporal patterns of neuron firing. Paired pulse stimulation results reveal that the effect of astrocytic glutamate uptake is more apparent when the input inter-spike interval is sufficiently long to allow the receptors to recover from desensitization. These results suggest an important functional role of astrocytes in spike timing dependent processes and demand further investigation of the molecular basis of certain neurological diseases specifically related to alterations in astrocytic glutamate uptake, such as epilepsy.

  2. Motoric subtypes of delirium in geriatric patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandeep Grover

    2014-01-01

    Results: On amended DMSS, hyperactive subtype (N = 45; 45.9% was the most common motoric subtype of delirium, followed by hypoactive subtype (N = 23; 23.5%, and mixed subtype (N = 21; 21.4%. On DRS-R-98, all patients fulfilled the criteria of ′acute (temporal onset of symptoms′, ′presence of an underlying physical disorder′ and ′difficulty in attention′. In the total sample, >90% of the patients had disturbances in sleep-wake cycle, orientation and fluctuation of symptoms. The least common symptoms were delusions, visuospatial disturbances and motor retardation. When compared to hypoactive group, significantly higher proportion of patients with hyperactive subtype had delusions, perceptual disturbances, and motor agitation. Whereas, compared to hyperactive subtype, significantly higher proportion of patients with hypoactive subtype had thought process abnormality and motor retardation. When the hyperactive and mixed motoric subtype groups were compared, patients with mixed subtype group had significantly higher prevalence of thought process abnormality and motor retardation. Comparison of hypoactive and mixed subtype revealed significant differences in the frequency of perceptual disturbances, delusions and motor agitation and all these symptoms being found more commonly in patients with the mixed subtype. Severity of symptoms were found to be significantly different across the various motoric subtypes for some of the non-cognitive symptoms, but significant differences were not seen for the cognitive symptoms as assessed on DRS-R-98. Conclusion: In elderly patients, motor subtypes of delirium differ from each other on non-cognitive symptom profile in terms of frequency and severity.

  3. Astrocyte, the star avatar: redefined

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    This review summarizes the past and present knowledge of glial cell functions that has evolved over the years, and has resulted in a new appreciation of astrocytes and their value in studying the neurobiology of human brain cells and their functions. In this review, we highlight recent advances in the role of glial cells in ...

  4. Mechanisms of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling under high extracellular K(+) concentrations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murakami, Shingo; Kurachi, Yoshihisa

    2016-03-01

    In response to the elevation of extracellular K(+) concentration ([K(+)]out), astrocytes clear excessive K(+) to maintain conditions necessary for neural activity. K(+) clearance in astrocytes occurs via two processes: K(+) uptake and K(+) spatial buffering. High [K(+)]out also induces swelling in astrocytes, leading to edema and cell death in the brain. Despite the importance of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we report results from a simulation analysis of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling. Astrocyte models were constructed by incorporating various mechanisms such as intra/extracellular ion concentrations of Na(+), K(+), and Cl(-), cell volume, and models of Na,K-ATPase, Na-K-Cl cotransporter (NKCC), K-Cl cotransporter, inwardly-rectifying K(+) (KIR) channel, passive Cl(-) current, and aquaporin channel. The simulated response of astrocyte models under the uniform distribution of high [K(+)]out revealed significant contributions of NKCC and Na,K-ATPase to increases of intracellular K(+) and Cl(-) concentrations, and swelling. Moreover, we found that, under the non-uniform distribution of high [K(+)]out, KIR channels localized at synaptic clefts absorbed excess K(+) by depolarizing the equivalent potential of K(+) (E K) above membrane potential, while K(+) released through perivascular KIR channels was enhanced by hyperpolarizing E K and depolarizing membrane potential. Further analysis of simulated drug effects revealed that astrocyte swelling was modulated by blocking each of the ion channels and transporters. Our simulation analysis revealed controversial mechanisms of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling resulting from complex interactions among ion channels and transporters.

  5. Italian field survey reveals a high diffusion of avian metapneumovirus subtype B in layers and weaknesses in the vaccination strategy applied.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cecchinato, Mattia; Lupini, Caterina; Ricchizzi, Enrico; Falchieri, Marco; Meini, Amelio; Jones, Richard C; Catelli, Elena

    2012-12-01

    The current information on the prevalence of avian metapneumovirus (aMPV) infection in layers is fragmentary and its true impact on egg production often remains unknown or unclear. In order to draw an epidemiologic picture of aMPV presence in layer flocks in Italy, a survey was performed on 19 flocks of pullets and layers based on longitudinal studies or sporadic samplings. aMPV was detected by reverse transcription (RT)-PCR, and blood samples were collected for serology by aMPV ELISA. Occurrences of respiratory signs and a drop in egg production were recorded. Possible involvement of infectious bronchitis (IB) and egg drop syndrome (EDS) viruses that could have caused loss of egg production we ruled out for IB virus by RT-PCR, and EDS virus was ruled out by hemagglutination-inhibition (HI). Only subtype B of aMPV was found in both pullet and layer farms. Surveys of pullets showed that most groups became infected prior to the onset of lay without showing clear respiratory signs. At the point of lay, these groups were serologically positive to aMPV. In two layer flocks, egg drops were observed and could be strongly linked to the presence of aMPV infection. Results were correlated with aMPV vaccination programs applied to the birds in three flocks on the same farm. Only a vaccination program which included two live and one killed vaccines gave complete protection from aMPV infection to the birds, while a single live vaccine application was not efficacious. The current study gives an inside view of field aMPV diffusion in Italy and its control in layers.

  6. Micropit: a new cell culturing approach for characterization of solitary astrocytes and small networks of these glial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Lee

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes play an important role in cell-cell signaling in the mammalian central nervous system. The ability of astrocytes to communicate with surrounding cells through gap-junctional coupling or signaling via the release of transmitters makes characterization of these cells difficult in vitro and even more so in vivo. To simplify the complexity of common in vitro systems, introduced by intercellular communication between astrocytes, we developed a novel cell culturing method, in which purified rat visual cortical astrocytes were grown in spatially defined cell-adhesion wells which we termed micropits. We showed that astrocytes cultured in micropit regions were viable and exhibited similar characteristics of Ca2+ dynamics and astrocytic marker expression to those of cells cultured in non-micropit regions. Examination of intracellular Ca2+ oscillations in solitary astrocytes cultured in micropits revealed less variable oscillations than those of non-micropit grouped astrocytes, which were in contact with their neighbors. Solitary cells in micropit regions can undergo ATP-mediated astrocyte-microglia signaling, demonstrating that this culturing method can also be used to investigate glial-glial interactions in a spatially well-defined microenvironment.

  7. Cortical astrocytes exposed to tributyltin undergo morphological changes in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizuhashi, S; Ikegaya, Y; Nishiyama, N; Matsuki, N

    2000-11-01

    We investigated the effect of tributyltin (TBT), an endocrine-disrupting chemical, on the morphology and viability of cultured rat cortical astrocytes. Cultured astrocytes exhibited smooth and planiform morphology under normal conditions. Following exposure to TBT, however, they showed rapid morphological changes that are characterized by asteriated cell bodies and process formation in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Higher concentrations of TBT produced progressive cell death of the astrocytes. In serum-free medium, TBT at a concentration as low as 200 nM induced the stellation. Pharmacological studies revealed that the morphological changes were alleviated by application of diverse free radical scavengers or antioxidants such as catalase, superoxide dismutase, Trolox, ascorbic acid and N-acetyl-L-cysteine, suggesting that TBT-induced stellation is caused by oxidative stress involving free radicals, particularly reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, we found that the astrocyte stellation was abolished by treatment with inhibitors of phospholipase C, mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase or tyrosine phosphatase. The data suggest that TBT causes the stellation through intracellular signaling cascades rather than its non-specific toxicity. These findings provide an important insight for reconciling the problems in assumed aversive actions of this environmental pollutant for mammals.

  8. Different Astrocytic Activation between Adult Gekko japonicus and Rats during Wound Healing In Vitro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun Gu

    Full Text Available Glial scar formation is a major obstacle to regeneration after spinal cord injury. Moreover, it has been shown that the astrocytic response to injury differs between species. Gekko japonicas is a type of reptile and it shows differential glial activation compared to that of rats. The purpose of the present study was to compare the proliferation and migration of astrocytes in the spinal cords of geckos and rats after injury in vitro. Spinal cord homogenate stimulation and scratch wound models were used to induce astrocytic activation in adult and embryonic rats, as well as in adult geckos. Our results indicated that astrocytes from the adult rat were likely activated by mechanical stimulation, even though they showed lower proliferation abilities than the astrocytes from the gecko under normal conditions. Furthermore, a transcriptome analysis revealed that the differentially expressed genes in astrocytes from adult rats and those from geckos were enriched in pathways involved in proliferation and the response to stimuli. This implies that intrinsic discrepancies in gene expression patterns might contribute to the differential activation of astrocytes between species.

  9. Bi-directional astrocytic regulation of neuronal activity within a network

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    Susan Yu Gordleeva

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The concept of a tripartite synapse holds that astrocytes can affect both the pre- and postsynaptic compartments through the Ca2+-dependent release of gliotransmitters. Because astrocytic Ca2+ transients usually last for a few seconds, we assumed that astrocytic regulation of synaptic transmission may also occur on the scale of seconds. Here, we considered the basic physiological functions of tripartite synapses and investigated astrocytic regulation at the level of neural network activity. The firing dynamics of individual neurons in a spontaneous firing network was described by the Hodgkin-Huxley model. The neurons received excitatory synaptic input driven by the Poisson spike train with variable frequency. The mean field concentration of the released neurotransmitter was used to describe the presynaptic dynamics. The amplitudes of the excitatory postsynaptic currents (PSCs obeyed the gamma distribution law. In our model, astrocytes depressed the presynaptic release and enhanced the postsynaptic currents. As a result, low frequency synaptic input was suppressed while high frequency input was amplified. The analysis of the neuron spiking frequency as an indicator of network activity revealed that tripartite synaptic transmission dramatically changed the local network operation compared to bipartite synapses. Specifically, the astrocytes supported homeostatic regulation of the network activity by increasing or decreasing firing of the neurons. Thus, the astrocyte activation may modulate a transition of neural network into bistable regime of activity with two stable firing levels and spontaneous transitions between them.

  10. Adrenoceptors in Brain: Cellular Gene Expression and Effects on Astrocytic Metabolism and [Ca2+]i

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertz, Leif; Lovatt, Ditte; Goldman, Steven A.; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2010-01-01

    Recent in vivo studies have established astrocytes as a major target for locus coeruleus activation (Bekar et al., Cereb. Cortex 18, 2789–2795), renewing interest in cell culture studies on noradrenergic effects on astrocytes in primary cultures and calling for additional information about the expression of adrenoceptor subtypes on different types of brain cells. In the present communication, mRNA expression of α1-, α2- and β-adrenergic receptors and their subtypes was determined in freshly-isolated, cell marker-defined populations of astrocytes, NG2-positive cells, microglia, endothelial cells, and Thy1-positive neurons (mainly glutamatergic projection neurons) in murine cerebral cortex. Immediately after dissection of frontal, parietal and occipital cortex of 10–12-week-old transgenic mice, which combined each cell-type marker with a specific fluorescent signal, the tissue was digested, triturated and centrifuged, yielding a solution of dissociated cells of all types, which were separated by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). mRNA expression in each cell fraction was determined by microarray analysis. α1A-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes and NG2-positive cells, but absent in other cell types, and α1B-receptors were not expressed in any cell population. Among α2-receptors only α2A-receptors were expressed, unequivocally in astrocytes and NG-positive cells, tentatively in microglia and questionably in Thy1-positive neurons and endothelial cells. β1-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes, tentatively in microglia, and questionably in neurons and endothelial cells, whereas β2-adrenergic receptors showed tentative expression in neurons and astrocytes and unequivocal expression in other cell types. This distribution was supported by immunochemical data and its relevance established by previous studies in well-differentiated primary cultures of mouse astrocytes, showing that stimulation of α2-adrenoceptors

  11. Involvement of astrocytes in neurovascular communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nuriya, M; Hirase, H

    2016-01-01

    The vascular interface of the brain is distinct from that of the peripheral tissue in that astrocytes, the most numerous glial cell type in the gray matter, cover the vasculature with their endfeet. This morphological feature of the gliovascular junction has prompted neuroscientists to suggest possible functional roles of astrocytes including astrocytic modulation of the vasculature. Additionally, astrocytes develop an intricate morphology that intimately apposes neuronal synapses, making them an ideal cellular mediator of neurovascular coupling. In this article, we first introduce the classical anatomical and physiological findings that led to the proposal of various gliovascular interaction models. Next, we touch on the technological advances in the past few decades that enabled investigations and evaluations of neuro-glio-vascular interactions in situ. We then review recent experimental findings on the roles of astrocytes in neurovascular coupling from the viewpoints of intra- and intercellular signalings in astrocytes. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Cell Biology of Astrocyte-Synapse Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Nicola J; Eroglu, Cagla

    2017-11-01

    Astrocytes, the most abundant glial cells in the mammalian brain, are critical regulators of brain development and physiology through dynamic and often bidirectional interactions with neuronal synapses. Despite the clear importance of astrocytes for the establishment and maintenance of proper synaptic connectivity, our understanding of their role in brain function is still in its infancy. We propose that this is at least in part due to large gaps in our knowledge of the cell biology of astrocytes and the mechanisms they use to interact with synapses. In this review, we summarize some of the seminal findings that yield important insight into the cellular and molecular basis of astrocyte-neuron communication, focusing on the role of astrocytes in the development and remodeling of synapses. Furthermore, we pose some pressing questions that need to be addressed to advance our mechanistic understanding of the role of astrocytes in regulating synaptic development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Reactive Astrocytes in Brain Metastasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Wasilewski

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Brain metastasis, the secondary growth of malignant cells within the central nervous system (CNS, exceeds the incidence of primary brain tumors (i.e., gliomas by tenfold and are seemingly on the rise owing to the emergence of novel targeted therapies that are more effective in controlling extracranial disease relatively to intracranial lesions. Despite the fact that metastasis to the brain poses a unmet clinical problem, with afflicted patients carrying significant morbidity and a fatal prognosis, our knowledge as to how metastatic cells manage to adapt to the tissue environment of the CNS remains limited. Answering this question could pave the way for novel and more specific therapeutic modalities in brain metastasis by targeting the specific makeup of the brain metastatic niche. In regard to this, astrocytes have emerged as the major host cell type that cancer cells encounter and interact with during brain metastasis formation. Similarly to other CNS disorders, astrocytes become reactive and respond to the presence of cancer cells by changing their phenotype and significantly influencing the outcome of disseminated cancer cells within the CNS. Here, we summarize the current knowledge on the contribution of reactive astrocytes in brain metastasis by focusing on the signaling pathways and types of interactions that play a crucial part in the communication with cancer cells and how these could be translated into innovative therapies.

  14. Active sulforhodamine 101 uptake into hippocampal astrocytes.

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    Christian Schnell

    Full Text Available Sulforhodamine 101 (SR101 is widely used as a marker of astrocytes. In this study we investigated labeling of astrocytes by SR101 in acute slices from the ventrolateral medulla and the hippocampus of transgenic mice expressing EGFP under the control of the astrocyte-specific human GFAP promoter. While SR101 efficiently and specifically labeled EGFP-expressing astrocytes in hippocampus, we found that the same staining procedure failed to label astrocytes efficiently in the ventrolateral medulla. Although carbenoxolone is able to decrease the SR101-labeling of astrocytes in the hippocampus, it is unlikely that SR101 is taken up via gap-junction hemichannels because mefloquine, a blocker for pannexin and connexin hemichannels, was unable to prevent SR101-labeling of hippocampal astrocytes. However, SR101-labeling of the hippocampal astrocytes was significantly reduced by substrates of organic anion transport polypeptides, including estron-3-sulfate and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, suggesting that SR101 is actively transported into hippocampal astrocytes.

  15. Astrocytic actions on extrasynaptic neuronal currents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balazs ePal

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In the last few decades, knowledge about astrocytic functions has significantly increased. It was demonstrated that astrocytes are not passive elements of the central nervous system, but active partners of neurons. There is a growing body of knowledge about the calcium excitability of astrocytes, the actions of different gliotransmitters and their release mechanisms, as well as the participation of astrocytes in the regulation of synaptic functions and their contribution to synaptic plasticity. However, astrocytic functions are even more complex than being a partner of the 'tripartite synapse', as they can influence extrasynaptic neuronal currents either by releasing substances or regulating ambient neurotransmitter levels. Several types of currents or changes of membrane potential with different kinetics and via different mechanisms can be elicited by astrocytic activity. Astrocyte-dependent phasic or tonic, inward or outward currents were described in several brain areas. Such currents, together with the synaptic actions of astrocytes, can contribute to neuromodulatory mechanisms, neurosensory and –secretory processes, cortical oscillatory activity, memory and learning or overall neuronal excitability. This mini-review is an attempt to give a brief summary of astrocyte-dependent extrasynaptic neuronal currents and their possible functional significance.

  16. Trafficking of astrocytic vesicles in hippocampal slices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Potokar, Maja; Kreft, Marko; Lee, So-Young; Takano, Hajime; Haydon, Philip G.; Zorec, Robert

    2009-01-01

    The increasingly appreciated role of astrocytes in neurophysiology dictates a thorough understanding of the mechanisms underlying the communication between astrocytes and neurons. In particular, the uptake and release of signaling substances into/from astrocytes is considered as crucial. The release of different gliotransmitters involves regulated exocytosis, consisting of the fusion between the vesicle and the plasma membranes. After fusion with the plasma membrane vesicles may be retrieved into the cytoplasm and may continue to recycle. To study the mobility implicated in the retrieval of secretory vesicles, these structures have been previously efficiently and specifically labeled in cultured astrocytes, by exposing live cells to primary and secondary antibodies. Since the vesicle labeling and the vesicle mobility properties may be an artifact of cell culture conditions, we here asked whether the retrieving exocytotic vesicles can be labeled in brain tissue slices and whether their mobility differs to that observed in cell cultures. We labeled astrocytic vesicles and recorded their mobility with two-photon microscopy in hippocampal slices from transgenic mice with fluorescently tagged astrocytes (GFP mice) and in wild-type mice with astrocytes labeled by Fluo4 fluorescence indicator. Glutamatergic vesicles and peptidergic granules were labeled by the anti-vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (vGlut1) and anti-atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) antibodies, respectively. We report that the vesicle mobility parameters (velocity, maximal displacement and track length) recorded in astrocytes from tissue slices are similar to those reported previously in cultured astrocytes.

  17. Lateral regulation of synaptic transmission by astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Covelo, A; Araque, A

    2016-05-26

    Fifteen years ago the concept of the "tripartite synapse" was proposed to conceptualize the functional view that astrocytes are integral elements of synapses. The signaling exchange between astrocytes and neurons within the tripartite synapse results in the synaptic regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity through an autocrine form of communication. However, recent evidence indicates that the astrocyte synaptic regulation is not restricted to the active tripartite synapse but can be manifested through astrocyte signaling at synapses relatively distant from active synapses, a process termed lateral astrocyte synaptic regulation. This phenomenon resembles the classical heterosynaptic modulation but is mechanistically different because it involves astrocytes and its properties critically depend on the morphological and functional features of astrocytes. Therefore, the functional concept of the tripartite synapse as a fundamental unit must be expanded to include the interaction between tripartite synapses. Through lateral synaptic regulation, astrocytes serve as an active processing bridge for synaptic interaction and crosstalk between synapses with no direct neuronal connectivity, supporting the idea that neural network function results from the coordinated activity of astrocytes and neurons. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Molecular Neuropathology of Astrocytes and Oligodendrocytes in Alcohol Use Disorders

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    José J. Miguel-Hidalgo

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Postmortem studies reveal structural and molecular alterations of astrocytes and oligodendrocytes in both the gray and white matter (GM and WM of the prefrontal cortex (PFC in human subjects with chronic alcohol abuse or dependence. These glial cellular changes appear to parallel and may largely explain structural and functional alterations detected using neuroimaging techniques in subjects with alcohol use disorders (AUDs. Moreover, due to the crucial roles of astrocytes and oligodendrocytes in neurotransmission and signal conduction, these cells are very likely major players in the molecular mechanisms underpinning alcoholism-related connectivity disturbances between the PFC and relevant interconnecting brain regions. The glia-mediated etiology of alcohol-related brain damage is likely multifactorial since metabolic, hormonal, hepatic and hemodynamic factors as well as direct actions of ethanol or its metabolites have the potential to disrupt distinct aspects of glial neurobiology. Studies in animal models of alcoholism and postmortem human brains have identified astrocyte markers altered in response to significant exposures to ethanol or during alcohol withdrawal, such as gap-junction proteins, glutamate transporters or enzymes related to glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA metabolism. Changes in these proteins and their regulatory pathways would not only cause GM neuronal dysfunction, but also disturbances in the ability of WM axons to convey impulses. In addition, alcoholism alters the expression of astrocyte and myelin proteins and of oligodendrocyte transcription factors important for the maintenance and plasticity of myelin sheaths in WM and GM. These changes are concomitant with epigenetic DNA and histone modifications as well as alterations in regulatory microRNAs (miRNAs that likely cause profound disturbances of gene expression and protein translation. Knowledge is also available about interactions between astrocytes and

  19. The Role of Astrocytes in the Generation, Migration, and Integration of New Neurons in the Adult Olfactory Bulb

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gengatharan, Archana; Bammann, Rodrigo R.; Saghatelyan, Armen

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, new neurons in the adult olfactory bulb originate from a pool of neural stem cells in the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles. Adult-born cells play an important role in odor information processing by adjusting the neuronal network to changing environmental conditions. Olfactory bulb neurogenesis is supported by several non-neuronal cells. In this review, we focus on the role of astroglial cells in the generation, migration, integration, and survival of new neurons in the adult forebrain. In the subventricular zone, neural stem cells with astrocytic properties display regional and temporal specificity when generating different neuronal subtypes. Non-neurogenic astrocytes contribute to the establishment and maintenance of the neurogenic niche. Neuroblast chains migrate through the rostral migratory stream ensheathed by astrocytic processes. Astrocytes play an important regulatory role in neuroblast migration and also assist in the development of a vasculature scaffold in the migratory stream that is essential for neuroblast migration in the postnatal brain. In the olfactory bulb, astrocytes help to modulate the network through a complex release of cytokines, regulate blood flow, and provide metabolic support, which may promote the integration and survival of new neurons. Astrocytes thus play a pivotal role in various processes of adult olfactory bulb neurogenesis, and it is likely that many other functions of these glial cells will emerge in the near future. PMID:27092050

  20. Astrocyte cultures derived from human brain tissue express angiotensinogen mRNA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Milsted, A.; Barna, B.P.; Ransohoff, R.M.; Brosnihan, K.B.; Ferrario, C.M.

    1990-01-01

    The authors have identified human cultured cell lines that are useful for studying angiotensinogen gene expression and its regulation in the central nervous system. A model cell system of human central nervous system origin expressing angiotensinogen has not previously been available. Expression of angiotensinogen mRNA appears to be a basal property of noninduced human astrocytes, since astrocytic cell lines derived from human glioblastomas or nonneoplastic human brain tissue invariably produced angiotensinogen mRNA. In situ hybridization histochemistry revealed that angiotensinogen mRNA production was not limited to a subpopulation of astrocytes because >99% of cells in these cultures contained angiotensinogen mRNA. These cell lines will be useful in studies of the molecular mechanisms controlling angiotensin synthesis and the role of biologically active angiotensin in the human brain by allowing the authors to examine regulation of expression of the renin-angiotensin system in human astrocyte cultures

  1. Fluoxetine requires the endfeet protein aquaporin-4 to enhance plasticity of astrocyte processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara eDi Benedetto

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Morphological alterations in astrocytes are characteristic for post mortem brains of patients affected by major depressive disorder (MDD. Recently, a significant reduction in the coverage of blood vessels (BVs by aquaporin-4 (AQP-4-positive astrocyte endfeet has been shown in the prefrontal cortex (PFC of MDD patients, suggesting that either alterations in the morphology of endfeet or in AQP-4 distribution might be responsible for the disease phenotype or constitute a consequence of its progress. Antidepressant drugs (ADs regulate the expression of several proteins, including astrocyte-specific ones. Thus, they may target AQP-4 to induce morphological changes in astrocytes and restore their proper shape or relocate AQP-4 to endfeet. Using an animal model of depression, rats selectively bred for high anxiety-like behavior (HAB, we confirmed a reduced coverage of BVs in the adult PFC by AQP-4-immunoreactive (AQP-4-IR astrocyte processes with respect to nonselected Wistar rats (NAB, thereby validating it for our study. A further evaluation of the morphology of astrocyte in brain slices (ex vivo and in vitro using an antibody against the astrocyte-specific cytoskeletal protein glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP revealed that HAB astrocytes extended less processes than NAB cells. Furthermore, short-term drug treatment in vitro with the AD fluoxetine (FLX was sufficient to increase the plasticity of astrocyte processes, enhancing their number in NAB-derived cells and recovering their basal number in HAB-derived cells. This enhanced FLX-dependent plasticity occurred, however, only in the presence of intact AQP-4, as demonstrated by the lack of effect after the downregulation of AQP-4 with RNAi in both NAB and HAB cells. Nonetheless, a similar short-term treatment did neither modulate the coverage of BVs with AQP-4-positive astrocyte endfeet in NAB nor in HAB rats, although dosage and time of treatment were sufficient to fully recover GFAP expression

  2. Effect of Huperzine A on Aβ-induced p65 of astrocyte in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Lushuang; Jiang, Cen; Wang, Zhang; Yi, Xiaohong; Gong, Yuanyuan; Chen, Yunhui; Fu, Yan

    2016-12-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common cause of dementia. Its pathology often accompanies inflammatory action, and astrocytes play important roles in such procedure. Rela(p65) is one of significant message factors in NF-κB pathway which has been reported high expression in astrocyte treated by Aβ. HupA, an alkaloid isolated from Chinese herb Huperzia serrata, has been widely used to treat AD and observations reflected that it improves memory and cognitive capacity of AD patients. To reveal its molecular mechanisms on p65, we cultured astrocytes, built Aβ-induced AD model, treated astrocytes with HupA at different concentrations, assayed cell viability with MTT, and detected p65 expression by immunohistochemistry and PCR. Our results revealed that treatment with 10 μM Aβ1-42 for 24 h induced a significant increase of NF-κB in astrocytes; HupA significantly down-regulated p65 expression induced by Aβ in astrocytes. This study infers that HupA can regulate NF-κB pathway to treat AD.

  3. From in silico astrocyte cell models to neuron-astrocyte network models: A review.

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    Oschmann, Franziska; Berry, Hugues; Obermayer, Klaus; Lenk, Kerstin

    2018-01-01

    The idea that astrocytes may be active partners in synaptic information processing has recently emerged from abundant experimental reports. Because of their spatial proximity to neurons and their bidirectional communication with them, astrocytes are now considered as an important third element of the synapse. Astrocytes integrate and process synaptic information and by doing so generate cytosolic calcium signals that are believed to reflect neuronal transmitter release. Moreover, they regulate neuronal information transmission by releasing gliotransmitters into the synaptic cleft affecting both pre- and postsynaptic receptors. Concurrent with the first experimental reports of the astrocytic impact on neural network dynamics, computational models describing astrocytic functions have been developed. In this review, we give an overview over the published computational models of astrocytic functions, from single-cell dynamics to the tripartite synapse level and network models of astrocytes and neurons. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Molecular and Functional Properties of Regional Astrocytes in the Adult Brain.

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    Morel, Lydie; Chiang, Ming Sum R; Higashimori, Haruki; Shoneye, Temitope; Iyer, Lakshmanan K; Yelick, Julia; Tai, Albert; Yang, Yongjie

    2017-09-06

    The molecular signature and functional properties of astroglial subtypes in the adult CNS remain largely undefined. By using translational ribosome affinity purification followed by RNA-Seq, we profiled astroglial ribosome-associated (presumably translating) mRNAs in major cortical and subcortical brain regions (cortex, hippocampus, caudate-putamen, nucleus accumbens, thalamus, and hypothalamus) of BAC aldh1l1 -translational ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) mice (both sexes). We found that the expression of astroglial translating mRNAs closely follows the dorsoventral axis, especially from cortex/hippocampus to thalamus/hypothalamus posteriorly. This region-specific expression pattern of genes, such as synaptogenic modulator sparc and transcriptional factors ( emx2 , lhx2 , and hopx ), was validated by qRT-PCR and immunostaining in brain sections. Interestingly, cortical or subcortical astrocytes selectively promote neurite growth and synaptic activity of neurons only from the same region in mismatched cocultures, exhibiting region-matched astrocyte to neuron communication. Overall, these results generated new molecular signature of astrocyte types in the adult CNS, providing insights into their origin and functional diversity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT We investigated the in vivo molecular and functional heterogeneity of astrocytes inter-regionally from adult brain. Our results showed that the expression pattern of ribosome-associated mRNA profiles in astrocytes closely follows the dorsoventral axis, especially posteriorly from cortex/hippocampus to thalamus/hypothalamus. In line with this, our functional results further demonstrated region-selective roles of cortical and subcortical astrocytes in regulating cortical or subcortical neuronal synaptogenesis and maturation. These in vivo studies provide a previously uncharacterized and important molecular atlas for exploring region-specific astroglial functions. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/378706-12$15.00/0.

  5. Large-scale recording of astrocyte activity

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    Nimmerjahn, Axel; Bergles, Dwight E.

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are highly ramified glial cells found throughout the central nervous system (CNS). They express a variety of neurotransmitter receptors that can induce widespread chemical excitation, placing these cells in an optimal position to exert global effects on brain physiology. However, the activity patterns of only a small fraction of astrocytes have been examined and techniques to manipulate their behavior are limited. As a result, little is known about how astrocytes modulate CNS function on synaptic, microcircuit, or systems levels. Here, we review current and emerging approaches for visualizing and manipulating astrocyte activity in vivo. Deciphering how astrocyte network activity is controlled in different physiological and pathological contexts is critical for defining their roles in the healthy and diseased CNS. PMID:25665733

  6. Astrocyte-neuron communication: functional consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben Achour, Sarrah; Pascual, Olivier

    2012-11-01

    Astrocyte-neuron communication has recently been proposed as a potential mechanism participating to synaptic transmission. With the development of this concept and accumulating evidences in favor of a modulation of synaptic transmission by astrocytes, has emerged the term gliotransmission. It refers to the capacity of astrocytes to release various transmitters, such as ATP, glutamate, D-serine, and GABA in the vicinity of synapses. While the cellular mechanisms involved in gliotransmission still need to be better described and, for some, identified, the aim of more and more studies is to determine the role of astrocytes from a functional point of view. This review will summarize the principal studies that have investigated a potential role of astrocytes in the various functions regulated by the brain (sleep, breathing, perception, learning and memory…). This will allow us to highlight the similarities and discrepancies in the signaling pathways involved in the different areas of the brain related to these functions.

  7. Micropatterned substrates for studying astrocytes in culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Lee

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies of the physiological roles of astrocytes have ignited renewed interest in the functional significance of these glial cells in the central nervous system. Many of the newly discovered astrocytic functions were initially demonstrated and characterized in cell culture systems. We discuss the use of microculture techniques and micropatterning of cell-adhesive substrates in studies of astrocytic Ca2+ excitability and bidirectional neuron-astrocyte signaling. This culturing approach aims to reduce the level of complexity of the system by limiting the interacting partners and by controlling the localization of cells. It provides tight control over experimental conditions allowing detailed characterization of cellular functions and intercellular communication. Although such a reductionist approach yields some difference in observations between astrocytic properties in culture and in situ, general phenomena discovered in cell culture systems, however, have also been found in vivo.

  8. Diverse FGF receptor signaling controls astrocyte specification and proliferation

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    Kang, Kyungjun [School of Life Sciences, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (Korea, Republic of); Song, Mi-Ryoung, E-mail: msong@gist.ac.kr [School of Life Sciences, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (Korea, Republic of); Bioimaging Research Center and Cell Dynamics Research Center, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology, Oryong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-712 (Korea, Republic of)

    2010-05-07

    During CNS development, pluripotency neuronal progenitor cells give rise in succession to neurons and glia. Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), a major signal that maintains neural progenitors in the undifferentiated state, is also thought to influence the transition from neurogenesis to gliogenesis. Here we present evidence that FGF receptors and underlying signaling pathways transmit the FGF-2 signals that regulate astrocyte specification aside from its mitogenic activity. Application of FGF-2 to cortical progenitors suppressed neurogenesis whereas treatment with an FGFR antagonist in vitro promoted neurogenesis. Introduction of chimeric FGFRs with mutated tyrosine residues into cortical progenitors and drug treatments to specifically block individual downstream signaling pathways revealed that the overall activity of FGFR rather than individual autophosphorylation sites is important for delivering signals for glial specification. In contrast, a signal for cell proliferation by FGFR was mainly delivered by MAPK pathway. Together our findings indicate that FGFR activity promotes astrocyte specification in the developing CNS.

  9. Extracellular Electrophysiological Measurements of Cooperative Signals in Astrocytes Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mestre, Ana L. G.; Inácio, Pedro M. C.; Elamine, Youssef; Asgarifar, Sanaz; Lourenço, Ana S.; Cristiano, Maria L. S.; Aguiar, Paulo; Medeiros, Maria C. R.; Araújo, Inês M.; Ventura, João; Gomes, Henrique L.

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are neuroglial cells that exhibit functional electrical properties sensitive to neuronal activity and capable of modulating neurotransmission. Thus, electrophysiological recordings of astroglial activity are very attractive to study the dynamics of glial signaling. This contribution reports on the use of ultra-sensitive planar electrodes combined with low noise and low frequency amplifiers that enable the detection of extracellular signals produced by primary cultures of astrocytes isolated from mouse cerebral cortex. Recorded activity is characterized by spontaneous bursts comprised of discrete signals with pronounced changes on the signal rate and amplitude. Weak and sporadic signals become synchronized and evolve with time to higher amplitude signals with a quasi-periodic behavior, revealing a cooperative signaling process. The methodology presented herewith enables the study of ionic fluctuations of population of cells, complementing the single cells observation by calcium imaging as well as by patch-clamp techniques. PMID:29109679

  10. Diverse FGF receptor signaling controls astrocyte specification and proliferation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kang, Kyungjun; Song, Mi-Ryoung

    2010-01-01

    During CNS development, pluripotency neuronal progenitor cells give rise in succession to neurons and glia. Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), a major signal that maintains neural progenitors in the undifferentiated state, is also thought to influence the transition from neurogenesis to gliogenesis. Here we present evidence that FGF receptors and underlying signaling pathways transmit the FGF-2 signals that regulate astrocyte specification aside from its mitogenic activity. Application of FGF-2 to cortical progenitors suppressed neurogenesis whereas treatment with an FGFR antagonist in vitro promoted neurogenesis. Introduction of chimeric FGFRs with mutated tyrosine residues into cortical progenitors and drug treatments to specifically block individual downstream signaling pathways revealed that the overall activity of FGFR rather than individual autophosphorylation sites is important for delivering signals for glial specification. In contrast, a signal for cell proliferation by FGFR was mainly delivered by MAPK pathway. Together our findings indicate that FGFR activity promotes astrocyte specification in the developing CNS.

  11. Spinal dorsal horn astrocytes: New players in chronic itch

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Makoto Tsuda

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Chronic itch is a debilitating symptom of inflammatory skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis, and systemic diseases, for which existing treatment is largely ineffective. Recent studies have revealed the selective neuronal pathways that are involved in itch sensations; however, the mechanisms by which itch turns into a pathological chronic state are poorly understood. Recent advances in our understanding of the mechanisms producing chronic itch have been made by defining causal roles for astrocytes in the spinal dorsal horn in mouse models of chronic itch including atopic dermatitis. Understanding the key roles of astrocytes may provide us with exciting insights into the mechanisms for itch chronicity and lead to a previously unrecognized target for treating chronic itch.

  12. Heterogeneity of astrocytes: from development to injury - single cell gene expression.

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    Vendula Rusnakova

    Full Text Available Astrocytes perform control and regulatory functions in the central nervous system; heterogeneity among them is still a matter of debate due to limited knowledge of their gene expression profiles and functional diversity. To unravel astrocyte heterogeneity during postnatal development and after focal cerebral ischemia, we employed single-cell gene expression profiling in acutely isolated cortical GFAP/EGFP-positive cells. Using a microfluidic qPCR platform, we profiled 47 genes encoding glial markers and ion channels/transporters/receptors participating in maintaining K(+ and glutamate homeostasis per cell. Self-organizing maps and principal component analyses revealed three subpopulations within 10-50 days of postnatal development (P10-P50. The first subpopulation, mainly immature glia from P10, was characterized by high transcriptional activity of all studied genes, including polydendrocytic markers. The second subpopulation (mostly from P20 was characterized by low gene transcript levels, while the third subpopulation encompassed mature astrocytes (mainly from P30, P50. Within 14 days after ischemia (D3, D7, D14, additional astrocytic subpopulations were identified: resting glia (mostly from P50 and D3, transcriptionally active early reactive glia (mainly from D7 and permanent reactive glia (solely from D14. Following focal cerebral ischemia, reactive astrocytes underwent pronounced changes in the expression of aquaporins, nonspecific cationic and potassium channels, glutamate receptors and reactive astrocyte markers.

  13. Computational model of neuron-astrocyte interactions during focal seizure generation

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    Davide eReato

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Empirical research in the last decade revealed that astrocytes can respond to neurotransmitters with Ca2+ elevations and generate feedback signals to neurons which modulate synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability. This discovery changed our basic understanding of brain function and provided new perspectives for how astrocytes can participate not only to information processing, but also to the genesis of brain disorders, such as epilepsy. Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures that can arise focally at restricted areas and propagate throughout the brain. Studies in brain slice models suggest that astrocytes contribute to epileptiform activity by increasing neuronal excitability through a Ca2+-dependent release of glutamate. The underlying mechanism remains, however, unclear. In this study, we implemented a parsimonious network model of neurons and astrocytes. The model consists of excitatory and inhibitory neurons described by Izhikevich's neuron dynamics. The experimentally observed Ca2+ change in astrocytes in response to neuronal activity was modeled with linear equations. We considered that glutamate is released from astrocytes above certain intracellular Ca2+ concentrations thus providing a non-linear positive feedback signal to neurons. Propagating seizure-like ictal discharges (IDs were reliably evoked in our computational model by repeatedly exciting a small area of the network, which replicates experimental results in a slice model of focal ID in entorhinal cortex. We found that the threshold of focal ID generation was lowered when an excitatory feedback-loop between astrocytes and neurons was included. Simulations show that astrocytes can contribute to ID generation by directly affecting the excitatory/inhibitory balance of the neuronal network. Our model can be used to obtain mechanistic insights into the distinct contributions of the different signaling pathways to the generation and

  14. Activity-dependent astrocyte swelling is mediated by pH-regulating mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Brian Roland; MacAulay, Nanna

    2017-10-01

    During neuronal activity in the mammalian brain, the K + released into the synaptic space is initially buffered by the astrocytic compartment. In parallel, the extracellular space (ECS) shrinks, presumably due to astrocytic cell swelling. With the Na + /K + /2Cl - cotransporter and the Kir4.1/AQP4 complex not required for the astrocytic cell swelling in the hippocampus, the molecular mechanisms underlying the activity-dependent ECS shrinkage have remained unresolved. To identify these molecular mechanisms, we employed ion-sensitive microelectrodes to measure changes in ECS, [K + ] o and [H + ] o /pH o during electrical stimulation of rat hippocampal slices. Transporters and receptors responding directly to the K + and glutamate released into the extracellular space (the K + /Cl - cotransporter, KCC, glutamate transporters and G protein-coupled receptors) did not modulate the extracellular space dynamics. The HCO3--transporting mechanism, which in astrocytes mainly constitutes the electrogenic Na + / HCO3- cotransporter 1 (NBCe1), is activated by the K + -mediated depolarization of the astrocytic membrane. Inhibition of this transporter reduced the ECS shrinkage by ∼25% without affecting the K + transients, pointing to NBCe1 as a key contributor to the stimulus-induced astrocytic cell swelling. Inhibition of the monocarboxylate cotransporters (MCT), like-wise, reduced the ECS shrinkage by ∼25% without compromising the K + transients. Isosmotic reduction of extracellular Cl - revealed a requirement for this ion in parts of the ECS shrinkage. Taken together, the stimulus-evoked astrocytic cell swelling does not appear to occur as a direct effect of the K + clearance, as earlier proposed, but partly via the pH-regulating transport mechanisms activated by the K + -induced astrocytic depolarization and the activity-dependent metabolism. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Neuroinflammation leads to region-dependent alterations in astrocyte gap junction communication and hemichannel activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karpuk, Nikolay; Burkovetskaya, Maria; Fritz, Teresa; Angle, Amanda; Kielian, Tammy

    2011-01-12

    Inflammation attenuates gap junction (GJ) communication in cultured astrocytes. Here we used a well-characterized model of experimental brain abscess as a tool to query effects of the CNS inflammatory milieu on astrocyte GJ communication and electrophysiological properties. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed on green fluorescent protein (GFP)-positive astrocytes in acute brain slices from glial fibrillary acidic protein-GFP mice at 3 or 7 d after Staphylococcus aureus infection in the striatum. Astrocyte GJ communication was significantly attenuated in regions immediately surrounding the abscess margins and progressively increased to levels typical of uninfected brain with increasing distance from the abscess proper. Conversely, astrocytes bordering the abscess demonstrated hemichannel activity as evident by enhanced ethidium bromide (EtBr) uptake that could be blocked by several pharmacological inhibitors, including the connexin 43 (Cx43) mimetic peptide Gap26, carbenoxolone, the pannexin1 (Panx1) mimetic peptide (10)Panx1, and probenecid. However, hemichannel opening was transient with astrocytic EtBr uptake observed near the abscess at day 3 but not day 7 after infection. The region-dependent pattern of hemichannel activity at day 3 directly correlated with increases in Cx43, Cx30, Panx1, and glutamate transporter expression (glial L-glutamate transporter and L-glutamate/L-aspartate transporter) along the abscess margins. Changes in astrocyte resting membrane potential and input conductance correlated with the observed changes in GJ communication and hemichannel activity. Collectively, these findings indicate that astrocyte coupling and electrical properties are most dramatically affected near the primary inflammatory site and reveal an opposing relationship between the open states of GJ channels versus hemichannels during acute infection. This relationship may extend to other CNS diseases typified with an inflammatory component.

  16. Artificial Astrocytes Improve Neural Network Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B.; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-01-01

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function. PMID:21526157

  17. Artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana B Porto-Pazos

    Full Text Available Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function.

  18. Artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-04-19

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function.

  19. Loose excitation-secretion coupling in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vardjan, Nina; Parpura, Vladimir; Zorec, Robert

    2016-05-01

    Astrocytes play an important housekeeping role in the central nervous system. Additionally, as secretory cells, they actively participate in cell-to-cell communication, which can be mediated by membrane-bound vesicles. The gliosignaling molecules stored in these vesicles are discharged into the extracellular space after the vesicle membrane fuses with the plasma membrane. This process is termed exocytosis, regulated by SNARE proteins, and triggered by elevations in cytosolic calcium levels, which are necessary and sufficient for exocytosis in astrocytes. For astrocytic exocytosis, calcium is sourced from the intracellular endoplasmic reticulum store, although its entry from the extracellular space contributes to cytosolic calcium dynamics in astrocytes. Here, we discuss calcium management in astrocytic exocytosis and the properties of the membrane-bound vesicles that store gliosignaling molecules, including the vesicle fusion machinery and kinetics of vesicle content discharge. In astrocytes, the delay between the increase in cytosolic calcium activity and the discharge of secretions from the vesicular lumen is orders of magnitude longer than that in neurons. This relatively loose excitation-secretion coupling is likely tailored to the participation of astrocytes in modulating neural network processing. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Lactate produced by glycogenolysis in astrocytes regulates memory processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Lori A; Korol, Donna L; Gold, Paul E

    2011-01-01

    When administered either systemically or centrally, glucose is a potent enhancer of memory processes. Measures of glucose levels in extracellular fluid in the rat hippocampus during memory tests reveal that these levels are dynamic, decreasing in response to memory tasks and loads; exogenous glucose blocks these decreases and enhances memory. The present experiments test the hypothesis that glucose enhancement of memory is mediated by glycogen storage and then metabolism to lactate in astrocytes, which provide lactate to neurons as an energy substrate. Sensitive bioprobes were used to measure brain glucose and lactate levels in 1-sec samples. Extracellular glucose decreased and lactate increased while rats performed a spatial working memory task. Intrahippocampal infusions of lactate enhanced memory in this task. In addition, pharmacological inhibition of astrocytic glycogenolysis impaired memory and this impairment was reversed by administration of lactate or glucose, both of which can provide lactate to neurons in the absence of glycogenolysis. Pharmacological block of the monocarboxylate transporter responsible for lactate uptake into neurons also impaired memory and this impairment was not reversed by either glucose or lactate. These findings support the view that astrocytes regulate memory formation by controlling the provision of lactate to support neuronal functions.

  1. Exposure of rat hippocampal astrocytes to Ziram increases oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matei, Ann-Marie; Trombetta, Louis D

    2016-04-01

    Pesticides have been shown in several studies to be the leading candidates of environmental toxins and may contribute to the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Ziram (zinc-bis(dimethyldithiocarbamate)) is an agricultural dithiocarbamate fungicide that is used to treat a variety of plant diseases. In spite of their generally acknowledged low toxicity, dithiocarbamates are known to cause a wide range of neurobehavioral effects as well as neuropathological changes in the brain. Astrocytes play a key role in normal brain physiology and in the pathology of the nervous system. This investigation studied the effects of 1.0 µM Ziram on rat hippocampal astrocytes. The thiobarbituric acid reactive substance assay performed showed a significant increase in malondialdehyde, a product of lipid peroxidation, in the Ziram-treated cells. Biochemical analysis also revealed a significant increase in the induction of 70 kDa heat shock and heme oxygenase 1 stress proteins. In addition, an increase of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and a significant increase in oxidized glutathione (GSSG) were observed in the Ziram-treated cells. The ratio GSH to GSSG calculated from the treated cells was also decreased. Light and transmission electron microscopy supported the biochemical findings in Ziram-treated astrocytes. This data suggest that the cytotoxic effects observed with Ziram treatments may be related to the increase of oxidative stress. © The Author(s) 2013.

  2. Molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes of breast cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cho, Nariya

    2016-01-01

    During the last 15 years, traditional breast cancer classifications based on histopathology have been reorganized into the luminal A, luminal B, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), and basal-like subtypes based on gene expression profiling. Each molecular subtype has shown varying risk for progression, response to treatment, and survival outcomes. Research linking the imaging phenotype with the molecular subtype has revealed that non-calcified, relatively circumscribed masses with posterior acoustic enhancement are common in the basal-like subtype, spiculated masses with a poorly circumscribed margin and posterior acoustic shadowing in the luminal subtype, and pleomorphic calcifications in the HER2-enriched subtype. Understanding the clinical implications of the molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes could help radiologists guide precision medicine, tailoring medical treatment to patients and their tumor characteristics

  3. Molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes of breast cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nariya Cho

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available During the last 15 years, traditional breast cancer classifications based on histopathology have been reorganized into the luminal A, luminal B, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2, and basal-like subtypes based on gene expression profiling. Each molecular subtype has shown varying risk for progression, response to treatment, and survival outcomes. Research linking the imaging phenotype with the molecular subtype has revealed that non-calcified, relatively circumscribed masses with posterior acoustic enhancement are common in the basal-like subtype, spiculated masses with a poorly circumscribed margin and posterior acoustic shadowing in the luminal subtype, and pleomorphic calcifications in the HER2-enriched subtype. Understanding the clinical implications of the molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes could help radiologists guide precision medicine, tailoring medical treatment to patients and their tumor characteristics.

  4. Molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes of breast cancer

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cho, Nariya [Dept. of Radiology, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-08-15

    During the last 15 years, traditional breast cancer classifications based on histopathology have been reorganized into the luminal A, luminal B, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2), and basal-like subtypes based on gene expression profiling. Each molecular subtype has shown varying risk for progression, response to treatment, and survival outcomes. Research linking the imaging phenotype with the molecular subtype has revealed that non-calcified, relatively circumscribed masses with posterior acoustic enhancement are common in the basal-like subtype, spiculated masses with a poorly circumscribed margin and posterior acoustic shadowing in the luminal subtype, and pleomorphic calcifications in the HER2-enriched subtype. Understanding the clinical implications of the molecular subtypes and imaging phenotypes could help radiologists guide precision medicine, tailoring medical treatment to patients and their tumor characteristics.

  5. Altered astrocytic swelling in the cortex of α-syntrophin-negative GFAP/EGFP mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miroslava Anderova

    Full Text Available Brain edema accompanying ischemic or traumatic brain injuries, originates from a disruption of ionic/neurotransmitter homeostasis that leads to accumulation of K(+ and glutamate in the extracellular space. Their increased uptake, predominantly provided by astrocytes, is associated with water influx via aquaporin-4 (AQP4. As the removal of perivascular AQP4 via the deletion of α-syntrophin was shown to delay edema formation and K(+ clearance, we aimed to elucidate the impact of α-syntrophin knockout on volume changes in individual astrocytes in situ evoked by pathological stimuli using three dimensional confocal morphometry and changes in the extracellular space volume fraction (α in situ and in vivo in the mouse cortex employing the real-time iontophoretic method. RT-qPCR profiling was used to reveal possible differences in the expression of ion channels/transporters that participate in maintaining ionic/neurotransmitter homeostasis. To visualize individual astrocytes in mice lacking α-syntrophin we crossbred GFAP/EGFP mice, in which the astrocytes are labeled by the enhanced green fluorescent protein under the human glial fibrillary acidic protein promoter, with α-syntrophin knockout mice. Three-dimensional confocal morphometry revealed that α-syntrophin deletion results in significantly smaller astrocyte swelling when induced by severe hypoosmotic stress, oxygen glucose deprivation (OGD or 50 mM K(+. As for the mild stimuli, such as mild hypoosmotic or hyperosmotic stress or 10 mM K(+, α-syntrophin deletion had no effect on astrocyte swelling. Similarly, evaluation of relative α changes showed a significantly smaller decrease in α-syntrophin knockout mice only during severe pathological conditions, but not during mild stimuli. In summary, the deletion of α-syntrophin markedly alters astrocyte swelling during severe hypoosmotic stress, OGD or high K(+.

  6. Astrocytic glutamate transport regulates a Drosophila CNS synapse that lacks astrocyte ensheathment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacNamee, Sarah E; Liu, Kendra E; Gerhard, Stephan; Tran, Cathy T; Fetter, Richard D; Cardona, Albert; Tolbert, Leslie P; Oland, Lynne A

    2016-07-01

    Anatomical, molecular, and physiological interactions between astrocytes and neuronal synapses regulate information processing in the brain. The fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster has become a valuable experimental system for genetic manipulation of the nervous system and has enormous potential for elucidating mechanisms that mediate neuron-glia interactions. Here, we show the first electrophysiological recordings from Drosophila astrocytes and characterize their spatial and physiological relationship with particular synapses. Astrocyte intrinsic properties were found to be strongly analogous to those of vertebrate astrocytes, including a passive current-voltage relationship, low membrane resistance, high capacitance, and dye-coupling to local astrocytes. Responses to optogenetic stimulation of glutamatergic premotor neurons were correlated directly with anatomy using serial electron microscopy reconstructions of homologous identified neurons and surrounding astrocytic processes. Robust bidirectional communication was present: neuronal activation triggered astrocytic glutamate transport via excitatory amino acid transporter 1 (Eaat1), and blocking Eaat1 extended glutamatergic interneuron-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents in motor neurons. The neuronal synapses were always located within 1 μm of an astrocytic process, but none were ensheathed by those processes. Thus, fly astrocytes can modulate fast synaptic transmission via neurotransmitter transport within these anatomical parameters. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:1979-1998, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Astrocytic Vesicle Mobility in Health and Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Zorec

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are no longer considered subservient to neurons, and are, instead, now understood to play an active role in brain signaling. The intercellular communication of astrocytes with neurons and other non-neuronal cells involves the exchange of molecules by exocytotic and endocytotic processes through the trafficking of intracellular vesicles. Recent studies of single vesicle mobility in astrocytes have prompted new views of how astrocytes contribute to information processing in nervous tissue. Here, we review the trafficking of several types of membrane-bound vesicles that are specifically involved in the processes of (i intercellular communication by gliotransmitters (glutamate, adenosine 5'-triphosphate, atrial natriuretic peptide, (ii plasma membrane exchange of transporters and receptors (EAAT2, MHC-II, and (iii the involvement of vesicle mobility carrying aquaporins (AQP4 in water homeostasis. The properties of vesicle traffic in astrocytes are discussed in respect to networking with neighboring cells in physiologic and pathologic conditions, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, and states in which astrocytes contribute to neuroinflammatory conditions.

  8. Glucocorticoid regulation of astrocytic fate and function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuang Yu

    Full Text Available Glial loss in the hippocampus has been suggested as a factor in the pathogenesis of stress-related brain disorders that are characterized by dysregulated glucocorticoid (GC secretion. However, little is known about the regulation of astrocytic fate by GC. Here, we show that astrocytes derived from the rat hippocampus undergo growth inhibition and display moderate activation of caspase 3 after exposure to GC. Importantly, the latter event, observed both in situ and in primary astrocytic cultures is not followed by either early- or late-stage apoptosis, as monitored by stage I or stage II DNA fragmentation. Thus, unlike hippocampal granule neurons, astrocytes are resistant to GC-induced apoptosis; this resistance is due to lower production of reactive oxygen species (ROS and a greater buffering capacity against the cytotoxic actions of ROS. We also show that GC influence hippocampal cell fate by inducing the expression of astrocyte-derived growth factors implicated in the control of neural precursor cell proliferation. Together, our results suggest that GC instigate a hitherto unknown dialog between astrocytes and neural progenitors, adding a new facet to understanding how GC influence the cytoarchitecture of the hippocampus.

  9. Astrocyte glycogen and brain energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Angus M; Ransom, Bruce R

    2007-09-01

    The brain contains glycogen but at low concentration compared with liver and muscle. In the adult brain, glycogen is found predominantly in astrocytes. Astrocyte glycogen content is modulated by a number of factors including some neurotransmitters and ambient glucose concentration. Compelling evidence indicates that astrocyte glycogen breaks down during hypoglycemia to lactate that is transferred to adjacent neurons or axons where it is used aerobically as fuel. In the case of CNS white matter, this source of energy can extend axon function for 20 min or longer. Likewise, during periods of intense neural activity when energy demand exceeds glucose supply, astrocyte glycogen is degraded to lactate, a portion of which is transferred to axons for fuel. Astrocyte glycogen, therefore, offers some protection against hypoglycemic neural injury and ensures that neurons and axons can maintain their function during very intense periods of activation. These emerging principles about the roles of astrocyte glycogen contradict the long held belief that this metabolic pool has little or no functional significance.

  10. Astrocyte atrophy and immune dysfunction in self-harming macaques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kim M; Chiu, Kevin B; Sansing, Hope A; Inglis, Fiona M; Baker, Kate C; MacLean, Andrew G

    2013-01-01

    Self-injurious behavior (SIB) is a complex condition that exhibits a spectrum of abnormal neuropsychological and locomotor behaviors. Mechanisms for neuropathogenesis could include irregular immune activation, host soluble factors, and astrocyte dysfunction. We examined the role of astrocytes as modulators of immune function in macaques with SIB. We measured changes in astrocyte morphology and function. Paraffin sections of frontal cortices from rhesus macaques identified with SIB were stained for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2). Morphologic features of astrocytes were determined using computer-assisted camera lucida. There was atrophy of white matter astrocyte cell bodies, decreased arbor length in both white and gray matter astrocytes, and decreased bifurcations and tips on astrocytes in animals with SIB. This was combined with a five-fold increase in the proportion of astrocytes immunopositive for TLR2. These results provide direct evidence that SIB induces immune activation of astrocytes concomitant with quantifiably different morphology.

  11. Astrocytic Contributions to Synaptic and Learning Abnormalities in a Mouse Model of Fragile X Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodges, Jennifer L; Yu, Xinzhu; Gilmore, Anthony; Bennett, Hannah; Tjia, Michelle; Perna, James F; Chen, Chia-Chien; Li, Xiang; Lu, Ju; Zuo, Yi

    2017-07-15

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common type of mental retardation attributable to a single-gene mutation. It is caused by FMR1 gene silencing and the consequent loss of its protein product, fragile X mental retardation protein. Fmr1 global knockout (KO) mice recapitulate many behavioral and synaptic phenotypes associated with FXS. Abundant evidence suggests that astrocytes are important contributors to neurological diseases. This study investigates astrocytic contributions to the progression of synaptic abnormalities and learning impairments associated with FXS. Taking advantage of the Cre-lox system, we generated and characterized mice in which fragile X mental retardation protein is selectively deleted or exclusively expressed in astrocytes. We performed in vivo two-photon imaging to track spine dynamics/morphology along dendrites of neurons in the motor cortex and examined associated behavioral defects. We found that adult astrocyte-specific Fmr1 KO mice displayed increased spine density in the motor cortex and impaired motor-skill learning. The learning defect coincided with a lack of enhanced spine dynamics in the motor cortex that normally occurs in response to motor skill acquisition. Although spine density was normal at 1 month of age in astrocyte-specific Fmr1 KO mice, new spines formed at an elevated rate. Furthermore, fragile X mental retardation protein expression in only astrocytes was insufficient to rescue most spine or behavioral defects. Our work suggests a joint astrocytic-neuronal contribution to FXS pathogenesis and reveals that heightened spine formation during adolescence precedes the overabundance of spines and behavioral defects found in adult Fmr1 KO mice. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Morphologic Subtypes of Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torbenson, Michael S

    2017-06-01

    Hepatocellular carcinomas can be further divided into distinct subtypes that provide important clinical information and biological insights. These subtypes are distinct from growth patterns and are on based on morphologic and molecular findings. There are 12 reasonably well-defined subtypes as well as 6 provisional subtypes, together making up 35% of all hepatocellular carcinomas. These subtypes are discussed, with an emphasis on their definitions and the key morphologic findings. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Astrocyte galectin-9 potentiates microglial TNF secretion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steelman, Andrew J; Li, Jianrong

    2014-08-27

    Aberrant neuroinflammation is suspected to contribute to the pathogenesis of myriad neurological diseases. As such, determining the pathways that promote or inhibit glial activation is of interest. Activation of the surface glycoprotein T-cell immunoglobulin and mucin-domain containing protein 3 (Tim-3) by the lectin galectin-9 has been implicated in promoting innate immune cell activation by potentiating or synergizing toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling. In the present study we examined the role of the Tim-3/galectin-9 pathway in glial activation in vitro. Primary monocultures of microglia or astrocytes, co-cultures containing microglia and astrocytes, and mixed glial cultures consisting of microglia, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes were stimulated with poly(I:C) or LPS, and galectin-9 up-regulation was determined. The effect of endogenous galectin-9 production on microglial activation was examined using cultures from wild-type and Lgals9 null mice. The ability for recombinant galectin-9 to promote microglia activation was also assessed. Tim-3 expression on microglia and BV2 cells was examined by qPCR and flow cytometry and its necessity in transducing the galectin-9 signal was determined using a Tim-3 specific neutralizing antibody or recombinant soluble Tim-3. Astrocytes potentiated TNF production from microglia following TLR stimulation. Poly(I:C) stimulation increased galectin-9 expression in microglia and microglial-derived factors promoted galectin-9 up-regulation in astrocytes. Astrocyte-derived galectin-9 in turn enhanced microglial TNF production. Similarly, recombinant galectin-9 enhanced poly(I:C)-induced microglial TNF and IL-6 production. Inhibition of Tim-3 did not alter TNF production in mixed glial cultures stimulated with poly(I:C). Galectin-9 functions as an astrocyte-microglia communication signal and promotes cytokine production from microglia in a Tim-3 independent manner. Activation of CNS galectin-9 likely modulates neuroinflammatory

  14. Electrospun fiber surface nanotopography influences astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Christopher D; D'Amato, Anthony R; Puhl, Devan L; Wich, Douglas M; Vespermann, Amanda; Gilbert, Ryan J

    2018-05-15

    Aligned, electrospun fiber scaffolds provide topographical guidance for regenerating neurons and glia after central nervous system injury. To date, no study has explored how fiber surface nanotopography affects astrocyte response to fibrous scaffolds. Astrocytes play important roles in the glial scar, the blood brain barrier, and in maintaining homeostasis in the central nervous system. In this study, electrospun poly L-lactic acid fibers were engineered with smooth, pitted, or divoted surface nanotopography. Cortical or spinal cord primary rat astrocytes were cultured on the surfaces for either 1 or 3 days to examine the astrocyte response over time. The results showed that cortical astrocytes were significantly shorter and broader on the pitted and divoted fibers compared to those on smooth fibers. However, spinal cord astrocyte morphology was not significantly altered by the surface features. These findings indicate that astrocytes from unique anatomical locations respond differently to the presence of nanotopography. Western Blot results show that the differences in morphology were not associated with significant changes in GFAP or vinculin in either astrocyte population, suggesting that surface pits and divots do not induce a reactive phenotype in either cortical or spinal cord astrocytes. Finally, astrocytes were co-cultured with dorsal root ganglia to determine how the surfaces affected astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth. Astrocytes cultured on the fibers for shorter periods of time (1 day) generally supported longer neurite outgrowth. Pitted and divoted fibers restricted spinal cord astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth, while smooth fibers increased 3 day spinal cord astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth. In total, fiber surface nanotopography can influence astrocyte elongation and influence the capability of astrocytes to direct neurites. Therefore, fiber surface characteristics should be carefully controlled to optimize astrocyte-mediated axonal

  15. BMP7 and SHH regulate Pax2 in mouse retinal astrocytes by relieving TLX repression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sehgal, Rachna; Sheibani, Nader; Rhodes, Simon J; Belecky Adams, Teri L

    2009-08-15

    Pax2 is essential for development of the neural tube, urogenital system, optic vesicle, optic cup and optic tract. In the eye, Pax2 deficiency is associated with coloboma, a loss of astrocytes in the optic nerve and retina, and abnormal axonal pathfinding of the ganglion cell axons at the optic chiasm. Thus, appropriate expression of Pax2 is essential for astrocyte determination and differentiation. Although BMP7 and SHH have been shown to regulate Pax2 expression, the molecular mechanism by which this regulation occurs is not well understood. In this study, we determined that BMP7 and SHH activate Pax2 expression in mouse retinal astrocyte precursors in vitro. SHH appeared to play a dual role in Pax2 regulation; 1) SHH may regulate BMP7 expression, and 2) the SHH pathway cooperates with the BMP pathway to regulate Pax2 expression. BMP and SHH pathway members can interact separately or together with TLX, a repressor protein in the tailless transcription factor family. Here we show that the interaction of both pathways with TLX relieves the repression of Pax2 expression in mouse retinal astrocytes. Together these data reveal a new mechanism for the cooperative actions of signaling pathways in astrocyte determination and differentiation and suggest interactions of regulatory pathways that are applicable to other developmental programs.

  16. Astrocytes protect glioma cells from chemotherapy and upregulate survival genes via gap junctional communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Qingtang; Liu, Zhao; Ling, Feng; Xu, Geng

    2016-02-01

    Gliomas are the most common type of primary brain tumor. Using current standard treatment regimens, the prognosis of patients with gliomas remains poor, which is predominantly due to the resistance of glioma cells to chemotherapy. The organ microenvironment has been implicated in the pathogenesis and survival of tumor cells. Thus, the aim of the present study was to test the hypothesis that astrocytes (the housekeeping cells of the brain microenvironment) may protect glioma cells from chemotherapy and to investigate the underlying mechanism. Immunofluorescent and scanning electron microscopy demonstrated that glioma cells were surrounded and infiltrated by activated astrocytes. In vitro co-culture of glioma cells with astrocytes significantly reduced the cytotoxic effects on glioma cells caused by various chemotherapeutic agents, as demonstrated by fluorescein isothiocyanate-propidium iodide flow cytometry. Transwell experiments indicated that this protective effect was dependent on physical contact and the gap junctional communication (GJC) between astrocytes and glioma cells. Microarray expression profiling further revealed that astrocytes upregulated the expression levels of various critical survival genes in the glioma cells via GJC. The results of the present study indicated that the organ microenvironment may affect the biological behavior of tumor cells and suggest a novel mechanism of resistance in glioma cells, which may be of therapeutic relevance clinically.

  17. Hypoxia inducible factor-2α regulates the development of retinal astrocytic network by maintaining adequate supply of astrocyte progenitors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Juan Duan

    Full Text Available Here we investigate the role of hypoxia inducible factor (HIF-2α in coordinating the development of retinal astrocytic and vascular networks. Three Cre mouse lines were used to disrupt floxed Hif-2α, including Rosa26(CreERT2, Tie2(Cre, and GFAP(Cre. Global Hif-2α disruption by Rosa26(CreERT2 led to reduced astrocytic and vascular development in neonatal retinas, whereas endothelial disruption by Tie2(Cre had no apparent effects. Hif-2α deletion in astrocyte progenitors by GFAP(Cre significantly interfered with the development of astrocytic networks, which failed to reach the retinal periphery and were incapable of supporting vascular development. Perplexingly, the abundance of strongly GFAP(+ mature astrocytes transiently increased at P0 before they began to lag behind the normal controls by P3. Pax2(+ and PDGFRα(+ astrocytic progenitors and immature astrocytes were dramatically diminished at all stages examined. Despite decreased number of astrocyte progenitors, their proliferation index or apoptosis was not altered. The above data can be reconciled by proposing that HIF-2α is required for maintaining the supply of astrocyte progenitors by slowing down their differentiation into non-proliferative mature astrocytes. HIF-2α deficiency in astrocyte progenitors may accelerate their differentiation into astrocytes, a change which greatly interferes with the replenishment of astrocyte progenitors due to insufficient time for proliferation. Rapidly declining progenitor supply may lead to premature cessation of astrocyte development. Given that HIF-2α protein undergoes oxygen dependent degradation, an interesting possibility is that retinal blood vessels may regulate astrocyte differentiation through their oxygen delivery function. While our findings support the consensus that retinal astrocytic template guides vascular development, they also raise the possibility that astrocytic and vascular networks may mutually regulate each other

  18. Sodium signaling and astrocyte energy metabolism

    KAUST Repository

    Chatton, Jean-Yves; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Barros, L. Felipe

    2016-01-01

    The Na+ gradient across the plasma membrane is constantly exploited by astrocytes as a secondary energy source to regulate the intracellular and extracellular milieu, and discard waste products. One of the most prominent roles of astrocytes in the brain is the Na+-dependent clearance of glutamate released by neurons during synaptic transmission. The intracellular Na+ load collectively generated by these processes converges at the Na,K-ATPase pump, responsible for Na+ extrusion from the cell, which is achieved at the expense of cellular ATP. These processes represent pivotal mechanisms enabling astrocytes to increase the local availability of metabolic substrates in response to neuronal activity. This review presents basic principles linking the intracellular handling of Na+ following activity-related transmembrane fluxes in astrocytes and the energy metabolic pathways involved. We propose a role of Na+ as an energy currency and as a mediator of metabolic signals in the context of neuron-glia interactions. We further discuss the possible impact of the astrocytic syncytium for the distribution and coordination of the metabolic response, and the compartmentation of these processes in cellular microdomains and subcellular organelles. Finally, we illustrate future avenues of investigation into signaling mechanisms aimed at bridging the gap between Na+ and the metabolic machinery. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Astrocytes in physiological aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez-Arellano, J J; Parpura, V; Zorec, R; Verkhratsky, A

    2016-05-26

    Astrocytes are fundamental for homoeostasis, defence and regeneration of the central nervous system. Loss of astroglial function and astroglial reactivity contributes to the aging of the brain and to neurodegenerative diseases. Changes in astroglia in aging and neurodegeneration are highly heterogeneous and region-specific. In animal models of Alzheimer's disease (AD) astrocytes undergo degeneration and atrophy at the early stages of pathological progression, which possibly may alter the homeostatic reserve of the brain and contribute to early cognitive deficits. At later stages of AD reactive astrocytes are associated with neurite plaques, the feature commonly found in animal models and in human diseased tissue. In animal models of the AD reactive astrogliosis develops in some (e.g. in the hippocampus) but not in all regions of the brain. For instance, in entorhinal and prefrontal cortices astrocytes do not mount gliotic response to emerging β-amyloid deposits. These deficits in reactivity coincide with higher vulnerability of these regions to AD-type pathology. Astroglial morphology and function can be regulated through environmental stimulation and/or medication suggesting that astrocytes can be regarded as a target for therapies aimed at the prevention and cure of neurodegenerative disorders. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Sodium signaling and astrocyte energy metabolism

    KAUST Repository

    Chatton, Jean-Yves

    2016-03-31

    The Na+ gradient across the plasma membrane is constantly exploited by astrocytes as a secondary energy source to regulate the intracellular and extracellular milieu, and discard waste products. One of the most prominent roles of astrocytes in the brain is the Na+-dependent clearance of glutamate released by neurons during synaptic transmission. The intracellular Na+ load collectively generated by these processes converges at the Na,K-ATPase pump, responsible for Na+ extrusion from the cell, which is achieved at the expense of cellular ATP. These processes represent pivotal mechanisms enabling astrocytes to increase the local availability of metabolic substrates in response to neuronal activity. This review presents basic principles linking the intracellular handling of Na+ following activity-related transmembrane fluxes in astrocytes and the energy metabolic pathways involved. We propose a role of Na+ as an energy currency and as a mediator of metabolic signals in the context of neuron-glia interactions. We further discuss the possible impact of the astrocytic syncytium for the distribution and coordination of the metabolic response, and the compartmentation of these processes in cellular microdomains and subcellular organelles. Finally, we illustrate future avenues of investigation into signaling mechanisms aimed at bridging the gap between Na+ and the metabolic machinery. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Astrocytic Insulin Signaling Couples Brain Glucose Uptake with Nutrient Availability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    García-Cáceres, Cristina; Quarta, Carmelo; Varela, Luis; Gao, Yuanqing; Gruber, Tim; Legutko, Beata; Jastroch, Martin; Johansson, Pia; Ninkovic, Jovica; Yi, Chun-Xia; Le Thuc, Ophelia; Szigeti-Buck, Klara; Cai, Weikang; Meyer, Carola W.; Pfluger, Paul T.; Fernandez, Ana M.; Luquet, Serge; Woods, Stephen C.; Torres-Alemán, Ignacio; Kahn, C. Ronald; Götz, Magdalena; Horvath, Tamas L.; Tschöp, Matthias H.

    2016-01-01

    We report that astrocytic insulin signaling co-regulates hypothalamic glucose sensing and systemic glucose metabolism. Postnatal ablation of insulin receptors (IRs) in glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-expressing cells affects hypothalamic astrocyte morphology, mitochondrial function, and

  2. Unravelling and Exploiting Astrocyte Dysfunction in Huntington's Disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Khakh, Baljit S.; Beaumont, Vahri; Cachope, Roger

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are abundant within mature neural circuits and are involved in brain disorders. Here, we summarize our current understanding of astrocytes and Huntington's disease (HD), with a focus on correlative and causative dysfunctions of ion homeostasis, calcium signaling, and neurotransmitter...

  3. Disentangling the role of astrocytes in alcohol use disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adermark, Louise; Bowers, M. Scott

    2016-01-01

    Several laboratories recently identified that astrocytes are critical regulators of addiction machinery. It is now known that astrocyte pathology is a common feature of ethanol exposure in both humans and animal models, as even brief ethanol exposure is sufficient to elicit long-lasting perturbations in astrocyte gene expression, activity, and proliferation. Astrocytes were also recently shown to modulate the motivational properties of ethanol and other strongly reinforcing stimuli. Given the role of astrocytes in regulating glutamate homeostasis, a crucial component of alcohol use disorder, astrocytes might be an important target for the development of next generation alcoholism treatments. This review will outline some of the more prominent features displayed by astrocytes, how these properties are influenced by acute and long term ethanol exposure, and future directions that may help to disentangle astrocytic from neuronal functions in the etiology of alcohol use disorder. PMID:27476876

  4. Reactive astrocytes over express TSPO and are detected by TSPO Positron Emission Tomography Imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lavisse, Sonia; Guillermier, Martine; Herard, Anne-Sophie; Petit, Fanny; Delahaye, Marion; Van Camp, Nadja; Ben Haim, Lucile; Lebon, Vincent; Delzescaux, Thierry; Bonvento, Gilles; Hantraye, Philippe; Escartin, Carole; Remy, Philippe; Dolle, Frederic

    2012-01-01

    Astrocytes and micro-glia become reactive under most brain pathological conditions, making this neuro-inflammation process a surrogate marker of neuronal dysfunction. Neuro-inflammation is associated with increased levels of translocator protein 18kDa(TSPO) and binding sites for TSPO ligands. Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging of TSPO is thus commonly used to monitor neuro-inflammation in preclinical and clinical studies. It is widely considered that TSPO PET signal reveals reactive micro-glia, although a few studies suggested a potential contribution of reactive astrocytes. Because astrocytes and micro-glia play very different roles, it is crucial to determine whether reactive astrocytes can also over-express TSPO and yield to a detectable TSPO PET signal in vivo. We used a model of selective astrocyte activation through lentiviral gene transfer of the cytokine ciliary neuro-trophic factor (CNTF) into the rat striatum, in the absence of neuro-degeneration. CNTF induced an extensive activation of astrocytes, which over-expressed GFAP and become hypertrophic, whereas micro-glia displayed minimal increase in reactive markers.Two TSPO radioligands, [ 18 F]DPA-714[N,N-diethyl-2-(2-(4-(2-[ 18 F]fluoroethoxy)phenyl) - 5,7-dimethylpyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidin-3-yl)acetamide] and [ 11 C]SSR180575 (7-chloro-N,N-dimethyl-5-[ 11 C]methyl-4-oxo-3-phenyl - 3,5-dihydro-4H-pyridazino[4,5- b]indole-1-acetamide),showed a significant binding in the lenti-CNTF-injected striatum that was saturated and displaced by PK11195[N-methyl- N-(1-methylpropyl)-1-(2-chlorophenyl)-isoquinoline-3-carboxamide]. The volume of radioligand binding matched the GFAP immuno-positive volume. TSPO mRNA levels were significantly increased, and TSPO protein was over-expressed by CNTF-activated astrocytes. We show that reactive astrocytes over-express TSPO, yielding to a significant and selective binding of TSPO radioligands. Therefore, caution must be used when interpreting TSPO PET imaging in animals or

  5. Astrocytic β2-adrenergic receptors mediate hippocampal long-term memory consolidation

    KAUST Repository

    Gao, Virginia; Suzuki, Akinobu; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Lengacher, Sylvain; Pollonini, Gabriella; Steinman, Michael Q.; Alberini, Cristina M.

    2016-01-01

    Emotionally relevant experiences form strong and long-lasting memories by critically engaging the stress hormone/neurotransmitter noradrenaline, which mediates and modulates the consolidation of these memories. Noradrenaline acts through adrenergic receptors (ARs), of which β2- Adrenergic receptors (βARs) are of particular importance. The differential anatomical and cellular distribution of βAR subtypes in the brain suggests that they play distinct roles in memory processing, although much about their specific contributions and mechanisms of action remains to be understood. Here we show that astrocytic rather than neuronal β2ARs in the hippocampus play a key role in the consolidation of a fear-based contextual memory. These hippocampal β2ARs, but not β1ARs, are coupled to the training-dependent release of lactate from astrocytes, which is necessary for long- Term memory formation and for underlying molecular changes. This key metabolic role of astrocytic β2ARs may represent a novel target mechanism for stress-related psychopathologies and neurodegeneration.

  6. Astrocytic β2-adrenergic receptors mediate hippocampal long-term memory consolidation

    KAUST Repository

    Gao, Virginia

    2016-07-12

    Emotionally relevant experiences form strong and long-lasting memories by critically engaging the stress hormone/neurotransmitter noradrenaline, which mediates and modulates the consolidation of these memories. Noradrenaline acts through adrenergic receptors (ARs), of which β2- Adrenergic receptors (βARs) are of particular importance. The differential anatomical and cellular distribution of βAR subtypes in the brain suggests that they play distinct roles in memory processing, although much about their specific contributions and mechanisms of action remains to be understood. Here we show that astrocytic rather than neuronal β2ARs in the hippocampus play a key role in the consolidation of a fear-based contextual memory. These hippocampal β2ARs, but not β1ARs, are coupled to the training-dependent release of lactate from astrocytes, which is necessary for long- Term memory formation and for underlying molecular changes. This key metabolic role of astrocytic β2ARs may represent a novel target mechanism for stress-related psychopathologies and neurodegeneration.

  7. New tools for investigating astrocyte-to-neuron communication

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Dongdong; Agulhon, Cendra; Schmidt, Elke; Oheim, Martin; Ropert, Nicole

    2013-01-01

    Gray matter protoplasmic astrocytes extend very thin processes and establish close contacts with synapses. It has been suggested that the release of neuroactive gliotransmitters at the tripartite synapse contributes to information processing. However, the concept of calcium (Ca2+)-dependent gliotransmitter release from astrocytes, and the release mechanisms are being debated. Studying astrocytes in their natural environment is challenging because: (i) astrocytes are electrically silent; (ii) ...

  8. Characterization of a series of anabaseine-derived compounds reveals that the 3-(4)-dimethylaminocinnamylidine derivative is a selective agonist at neuronal nicotinic alpha 7/125I-alpha-bungarotoxin receptor subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Fiebre, C M; Meyer, E M; Henry, J C; Muraskin, S I; Kem, W R; Papke, R L

    1995-01-01

    Investigation of the naturally occurring, nicotinic agonist anabaseine and novel derivatives has shown that these compounds have cytoprotective and memory-enhancing effects. The hypothesis that these arise at least in part through actions on brain nicotinic receptors was evaluated by examining the ability of these compounds to displace the binding of nicotinic ligands and to affect the function of the alpha 4 beta 2 and alpha 7 receptor subtypes expressed in Xenopus oocytes. The derivative 3-(4)-dimethylaminocinnamylidine anabaseine (DMAC) was found to be a selective alpha 7 receptor agonist; it was more potent than nicotine, acetylcholine, anabaseine, and other derivatives at activating the alpha 7 receptor subtype, while displaying little agonist activity at alpha 4 beta 2 and other receptor subtypes. Compared with anabaseine and the other derivatives, DMAC was the most potent at displacing 125I-alpha-bungarotoxin binding (putative alpha 7) and the least potent at displacing [3H]cytisine binding (putative alpha 4 beta 2) to brain membranes. Independently of agonist activities, all of the novel compounds displayed secondary inhibitory activity at both receptor subtypes. At the alpha 4 beta 2 receptor subtype, inhibition by the 3-(2,4)-dimethoxybenzylidene derivative was enhanced by coapplication of acetylcholine, suggesting a noncompetitive form of inhibition. Anabaseine and nicotine prolonged the time course of activation of alpha 4 beta 2 receptors, compared with acetylcholine, suggesting sequential channel-blocking activity. As selective agonists, anabaseine derivatives such as DMAC may be useful for elucidating the function of alpha 7 nicotinic receptors, including their potential role(s) in the cytoprotective and memory-enhancing effects of nicotinic agents.

  9. Pathological Gambling Subtypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vachon, David D.; Bagby, R. Michael

    2009-01-01

    Although pathological gambling (PG) is regarded in the 4th edition of the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders" (American Psychiatric Association, 1994) as a unitary diagnostic construct, it is likely composed of distinct subtypes. In the current report, the authors used cluster analyses of personality traits with a…

  10. Evidence for a novel functional role of astrocytes in the acute homeostatic response to high-fat diet intake in mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckman, Laura B.; Thompson, Misty M.; Lippert, Rachel N.; Blackwell, Timothy S.; Yull, Fiona E.; Ellacott, Kate L.J.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Introduction of a high-fat diet to mice results in a period of voracious feeding, known as hyperphagia, before homeostatic mechanisms prevail to restore energy intake to an isocaloric level. Acute high-fat diet hyperphagia induces astrocyte activation in the rodent hypothalamus, suggesting a potential role of these cells in the homeostatic response to the diet. The objective of this study was to determine physiologic role of astrocytes in the acute homeostatic response to high-fat feeding. Methods We bred a transgenic mouse model with doxycycline-inducible inhibition of NFkappaB (NFκB) signaling in astrocytes to determine the effect of loss of NFκB-mediated astrocyte activation on acute high-fat hyperphagia. ELISA was used to measure the levels of markers of astrocyte activation, glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and S100B, in the medial basal hypothalamus. Results Inhibition of NFκB signaling in astrocytes prevented acute high-fat diet-induced astrocyte activation and resulted in a 15% increase in caloric intake (P < 0.01) in the first 24 h after introduction of the diet. Conclusions These data reveal a novel homeostatic role for astrocytes in the acute physiologic regulation of food intake in response to high-fat feeding. PMID:25685690

  11. AMPK Activation Affects Glutamate Metabolism in Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Voss, Caroline Marie; Pajęcka, Kamilla; Stridh, Malin H

    2015-01-01

    acid (TCA) cycle was studied using high-performance liquid chromatography analysis supplemented with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry technology. It was found that AMPK activation had profound effects on the pathways involved in glutamate metabolism since the entrance of the glutamate carbon...... on glutamate metabolism in astrocytes was studied using primary cultures of these cells from mouse cerebral cortex during incubation in media containing 2.5 mM glucose and 100 µM [U-(13)C]glutamate. The metabolism of glutamate including a detailed analysis of its metabolic pathways involving the tricarboxylic...... skeleton into the TCA cycle was reduced. On the other hand, glutamate uptake into the astrocytes as well as its conversion to glutamine catalyzed by glutamine synthetase was not affected by AMPK activation. Interestingly, synthesis and release of citrate, which are hallmarks of astrocytic function, were...

  12. Tumor grading of adult astrocytic glioma on MR imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chang, Kee Hyun; Choi, Choong Gon; Han, Moon Hee; Lee, Seon Kyu [Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Suh, Jung Ho [Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Ho Kyu; Suh, Dae Chul [Ulsan University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Kyu Ho [Catholic University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Byun, Hong Sik [Korea Cancer Center Hospital, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Woo Suk [Kyung Hee University College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    1994-09-15

    The purpose of this study is to determine predictive MR features for grading of astrocytic gliomas and to evaluate the accuracy of MR grading in these tumors. We retrospectively reviewed 135 cases of supratentorial astrocytic gliomas in adult (age > 15 years), all of which were proved by open biopsy. Two observers analysed MR images independently with criteria of margin, edema, mass effect, signal heterogeneity, necrosis, cyst formation, hemorrhage, tumor vascularity, enhancement degree, and enhancement size. The patterns of enhancement were categorized into no, homogeneous, heterogeneous, thin smooth rim, thin irregular rim, and thick irregular rim enhancement patterns. Observers finally diagnosed each case as one of low-grade astrocytoma, anaplastic astrocytoma or glioblastoma multiforme. Statistically significant MR features for grading of these tumors were revealed as necrosis (p < 0.001), edema (0.008), and signal heterogeneity (p < 0.025). When compared with histopathologic grading, MR graded correctly 76%- 77% of cases in two tired system(low-grade astrocytoma versus high-grade astrocytoma), but only 67%-69% of cases in three tiered system(low-grade astrocytoma, anaplastic astrocytoma, glioblastoma multiforme). No contrast enhancement was seen in 45% and 23% of low-grade astrocytoma and anaplastic astrocytoma respectively. Glioblastoma multiforme frequently showed thick irregular rim enhancement (57%), but no enhancement at all in 8%. We have concluded that necrosis and edema are significant predictive MR features for grading of supratentorial astrocytic gliomas in adult, and MR was correct in 76%-77% of cases for predicting pathologic grading astrocytomas in two tiered system.

  13. Tumor grading of adult astrocytic glioma on MR imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chang, Kee Hyun; Choi, Choong Gon; Han, Moon Hee; Lee, Seon Kyu; Suh, Jung Ho; Lee, Ho Kyu; Suh, Dae Chul; Choi, Kyu Ho; Byun, Hong Sik; Choi, Woo Suk

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to determine predictive MR features for grading of astrocytic gliomas and to evaluate the accuracy of MR grading in these tumors. We retrospectively reviewed 135 cases of supratentorial astrocytic gliomas in adult (age > 15 years), all of which were proved by open biopsy. Two observers analysed MR images independently with criteria of margin, edema, mass effect, signal heterogeneity, necrosis, cyst formation, hemorrhage, tumor vascularity, enhancement degree, and enhancement size. The patterns of enhancement were categorized into no, homogeneous, heterogeneous, thin smooth rim, thin irregular rim, and thick irregular rim enhancement patterns. Observers finally diagnosed each case as one of low-grade astrocytoma, anaplastic astrocytoma or glioblastoma multiforme. Statistically significant MR features for grading of these tumors were revealed as necrosis (p < 0.001), edema (0.008), and signal heterogeneity (p < 0.025). When compared with histopathologic grading, MR graded correctly 76%- 77% of cases in two tired system(low-grade astrocytoma versus high-grade astrocytoma), but only 67%-69% of cases in three tiered system(low-grade astrocytoma, anaplastic astrocytoma, glioblastoma multiforme). No contrast enhancement was seen in 45% and 23% of low-grade astrocytoma and anaplastic astrocytoma respectively. Glioblastoma multiforme frequently showed thick irregular rim enhancement (57%), but no enhancement at all in 8%. We have concluded that necrosis and edema are significant predictive MR features for grading of supratentorial astrocytic gliomas in adult, and MR was correct in 76%-77% of cases for predicting pathologic grading astrocytomas in two tiered system

  14. DJ-1 KNOCK-DOWN IMPAIRS ASTROCYTE MITOCHONDRIAL FUNCTION

    Science.gov (United States)

    LARSEN, N. J.; AMBROSI, G.; MULLETT, S. J.; BERMAN, S. B.; HINKLE, D. A.

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction has long been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD brain tissues show evidence for mitochondrial respiratory chain Complex I deficiency. Pharmacological inhibitors of Complex I, such as rotenone, cause experimental parkinsonism. The cytoprotective protein DJ-1, whose deletion is sufficient to cause genetic PD, is also known to have mitochondria-stabilizing properties. We have previously shown that DJ-1 is over-expressed in PD astrocytes, and that DJ-1 deficiency impairs the capacity of astrocytes to protect co-cultured neurons against rotenone. Since DJ-1 modulated, astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection against rotenone may depend upon proper astrocytic mitochondrial functioning, we hypothesized that DJ-1 deficiency would impair astrocyte mitochondrial motility, fission/fusion dynamics, membrane potential maintenance, and respiration, both at baseline and as an enhancement of rotenone-induced mitochondrial dysfunction. In astrocyte-enriched cultures, we observed that DJ-1 knock-down reduced mitochondrial motility primarily in the cellular processes of both untreated and rotenone treated cells. In these same cultures, DJ-1 knock-down did not appreciably affect mitochondrial fission, fusion, or respiration, but did enhance rotenone-induced reductions in the mitochondrial membrane potential. In neuron–astrocyte co-cultures, astrocytic DJ-1 knock-down reduced astrocyte process mitochondrial motility in untreated cells, but this effect was not maintained in the presence of rotenone. In the same co-cultures, astrocytic DJ-1 knock-down significantly reduced mitochondrial fusion in the astrocyte cell bodies, but not the processes, under the same conditions of rotenone treatment in which DJ-1 deficiency is known to impair astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection. Our studies therefore demonstrated the following new findings: (i) DJ-1 deficiency can impair astrocyte mitochondrial physiology at multiple levels, (ii) astrocyte

  15. Evidence for a role of proline and hypothalamic astrocytes in the regulation of glucose metabolism in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrieta-Cruz, Isabel; Su, Ya; Knight, Colette M; Lam, Tony K T; Gutiérrez-Juárez, Roger

    2013-04-01

    The metabolism of lactate to pyruvate in the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH) regulates hepatic glucose production. Because astrocytes and neurons are functionally linked by metabolic coupling through lactate transfer via the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS), we reasoned that astrocytes might be involved in the hypothalamic regulation of glucose metabolism. To examine this possibility, we used the gluconeogenic amino acid proline, which is metabolized to pyruvate in astrocytes. Our results showed that increasing the availability of proline in rats either centrally (MBH) or systemically acutely lowered blood glucose. Pancreatic clamp studies revealed that this hypoglycemic effect was due to a decrease of hepatic glucose production secondary to an inhibition of glycogenolysis, gluconeogenesis, and glucose-6-phosphatase flux. The effect of proline was mimicked by glutamate, an intermediary of proline metabolism. Interestingly, proline's action was markedly blunted by pharmacological inhibition of hypothalamic lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) suggesting that metabolic flux through LDH was required. Furthermore, short hairpin RNA-mediated knockdown of hypothalamic LDH-A, an astrocytic component of the ANLS, also blunted the glucoregulatory action of proline. Thus our studies suggest not only a new role for proline in the regulation of hepatic glucose production but also indicate that hypothalamic astrocytes are involved in the regulatory mechanism as well.

  16. Supplementary Material for: Astrocyte-specific overexpressed gene signatures in response to methamphetamine exposure in vitro

    KAUST Repository

    Bortell, Nikki; Basova, Liana; Semenova, Svetlana; Fox, Howard; Ravasi, Timothy; Marcondes, Maria

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Background Astrocyte activation is one of the earliest findings in the brain of methamphetamine (Meth) abusers. Our goal in this study was to identify the characteristics of the astrocytic acute response to the drug, which may be critical in pathogenic outcomes secondary to the use. Methods We developed an integrated analysis of gene expression data to study the acute gene changes caused by the direct exposure to Meth treatment of astrocytes in vitro, and to better understand how astrocytes respond, what are the early molecular markers associated with this response. We examined the literature in search of similar changes in gene signatures that are found in central nervous system disorders. Results We identified overexpressed gene networks represented by genes of an inflammatory and immune nature and that are implicated in neuroactive ligand-receptor interactions. The overexpressed networks are linked to molecules that were highly upregulated in astrocytes by all doses of methamphetamine tested and that could play a role in the central nervous system. The strongest overexpressed signatures were the upregulation of MAP2K5, GPR65, and CXCL5, and the gene networks individually associated with these molecules. Pathway analysis revealed that these networks are involved both in neuroprotection and in neuropathology. We have validated several targets associated to these genes. Conclusions Gene signatures for the astrocytic response to Meth were identified among the upregulated gene pool, using an in vitro system. The identified markers may participate in dysfunctions of the central nervous system but could also provide acute protection to the drug exposure. Further in vivo studies are necessary to establish the role of these gene networks in drug abuse pathogenesis.

  17. Regional Susceptibility to Domoic Acid in Primary Astrocyte Cells Cultured from the Brain Stem and Hippocampus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga M. Pulido

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Domoic acid is a marine biotoxin associated with harmful algal blooms and is the causative agent of amnesic shellfish poisoning in marine animals and humans. It is also an excitatory amino acid analog to glutamate and kainic acid which acts through glutamate receptors eliciting a very rapid and potent neurotoxic response. The hippocampus, among other brain regions, has been identified as a specific target site having high sensitivity to DOM toxicity. Histopathology evidence indicates that in addition to neurons, the astrocytes were also injured. Electron microscopy data reported in this study further supports the light microscopy findings. Furthermore, the effect of DOM was confirmed by culturing primary astrocytes from the hippocampus and the brain stem and subsequently exposing them to domoic acid. The RNA was extracted and used for biomarker analysis. The biomarker analysis was done for the early response genes including c-fos, c-jun, c-myc, Hsp-72; specific marker for the astrocytes- GFAP and the glutamate receptors including GluR 2, NMDAR 1, NMDAR 2A and B. Although, the astrocyte-GFAP and c-fos were not affected, c-jun and GluR 2 were down-regulated. The microarray analysis revealed that the chemokines / cytokines, tyrosine kinases (Trk, and apoptotic genes were altered. The chemokines that were up-regulated included - IL1-a, IL-1B, IL-6, the small inducible cytokine, interferon protein IP-10, CXC chemokine LIX, and IGF binding proteins. The Bax, Bcl-2, Trk A and Trk B were all downregulated. Interestingly, only the hippocampal astrocytes were affected. Our findings suggest that astrocytes may present a possible target for pharmacological interventions for the prevention and treatment of amnesic shellfish poisoning and for other brain pathologies involving excitotoxicity

  18. Distribution of rSlo Ca2+-activated K+ channels in rat astrocyte perivascular endfeet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Diana L; Ludwig, Jeffrey W; Mi, Huaiyu; Schwarz, Thomas L; Ellisman, Mark H

    2002-11-29

    Evidence that Ca(2+)-activated K(+) (K(Ca)) channels play a role in cell volume changes and K(+) homeostasis led to a prediction that astrocytes would have K(Ca) channels near blood vessels in order to maintain K(+) homeostasis. Consistent with this thinking the present study demonstrates that rSlo K(Ca) channels are in glial cells of the adult rat central nervous system (CNS) and highly localized to specializations of astrocytes associated with the brain vasculature. Using confocal and thin-section electron microscopic immunolabeling methods the distribution of rSlo was examined in adult rat brain. Strong rSlo immunolabeling was present around the vasculature of most brain regions. Examination of dye-filled hippocampal astrocytes revealed rSlo immunolabeling polarized in astrocytic endfeet. Ultrastructural analysis confirmed that the rSlo staining was concentrated in astrocytic endfeet ensheathing capillaries as well as abutting the pia mater. Immunostaining within the endfeet was predominantly distributed at the plasma membrane directly adjacent to either the vascular basal lamina or the pial surface. The distribution of the aquaporin-4 (AQP-4) water channel was also examined using dye-filled hippocampal astrocytes. In confirmation of earlier reports, intense AQP-4 immunolabeling was generally observed at the perimeter of blood vessels, and coincided with perivascular endfeet and rSlo labeling. We propose that rSlo K(Ca) channels, with their sensitivity to membrane depolarization and intracellular calcium, play a role in the K(+) modulation of cerebral blood flow. Additional knowledge of the molecular and cellular machinery present at perivascular endfeet may provide insight into the structural and functional molecular elements responsible for the neuronal activity-dependent regulation of cerebral blood flow. Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science B.V.

  19. Assessment of mitochondrial electron transport chain function in a primary astrocyte cell model of hyperhomocystinaemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkes, Fiona; Murphy, Elaine; Land, John; Demiray, Berna; Duberley, Kate; Briddon, Antony; Hargreaves, Iain

    2013-07-01

    Elevated plasma homocysteine (Hcy) has been detected in patients with various neurodegenerative conditions. Studies on neurones and cerebral tissue have revealed that hyperhomocystinaemia may inhibit mitochondrial electron transport chain (ETC) enzyme activity resulting in neuronal morbidity. As astrocytes convey a protective and supportive role towards neurones, we postulated that Hcy-induced astrocytic ETC inhibition may contribute to neurological dysfunction. In order to investigate this hypothesis, we established a cellular model of hyperhomocystinaemia using primary rat astrocytes. Which were incubated were incubated with 200 µM, 500 µM Hcy and the Hcy metabolite, thiolactone (10 µM). Following 96 h of incubation with 200 µM and 500 µM Hcy, an approximate two-fold (1.11 nmol/mg) and three-fold (1.45 nmol/mg) increase in mitochondrial levels of Hcy, respectively, were detected compared to control levels (0.54 nmol/mg). However, on exposure to Hcy (200 or 500 µM) and Hcy-thiolactone (10 µM), the activities of astrocytic ETC complex I, II-III and IV were found to be comparable to control levels. In addition, the extracellular lactate:pyruvate ratio and the intracellular glutathione status of primary rat astrocytes were not significantly different between Hcy (200 or 500 µM) treated and controls. In conclusion, the results of this study suggest that Hcy induced impairment of astrocytic ETC function may not contribute to the pathophysiology of hyperhomocystinaemia.

  20. Astrocyte-specific overexpressed gene signatures in response to methamphetamine exposure in vitro

    KAUST Repository

    Bortell, Nikki

    2017-03-09

    BackgroundAstrocyte activation is one of the earliest findings in the brain of methamphetamine (Meth) abusers. Our goal in this study was to identify the characteristics of the astrocytic acute response to the drug, which may be critical in pathogenic outcomes secondary to the use.MethodsWe developed an integrated analysis of gene expression data to study the acute gene changes caused by the direct exposure to Meth treatment of astrocytes in vitro, and to better understand how astrocytes respond, what are the early molecular markers associated with this response. We examined the literature in search of similar changes in gene signatures that are found in central nervous system disorders.ResultsWe identified overexpressed gene networks represented by genes of an inflammatory and immune nature and that are implicated in neuroactive ligand-receptor interactions. The overexpressed networks are linked to molecules that were highly upregulated in astrocytes by all doses of methamphetamine tested and that could play a role in the central nervous system. The strongest overexpressed signatures were the upregulation of MAP2K5, GPR65, and CXCL5, and the gene networks individually associated with these molecules. Pathway analysis revealed that these networks are involved both in neuroprotection and in neuropathology. We have validated several targets associated to these genes.ConclusionsGene signatures for the astrocytic response to Meth were identified among the upregulated gene pool, using an in vitro system. The identified markers may participate in dysfunctions of the central nervous system but could also provide acute protection to the drug exposure. Further in vivo studies are necessary to establish the role of these gene networks in drug abuse pathogenesis.

  1. Astrocyte-specific overexpressed gene signatures in response to methamphetamine exposure in vitro

    KAUST Repository

    Bortell, Nikki; Basova, Liana; Semenova, Svetlana; Fox, Howard S.; Ravasi, Timothy; Marcondes, Maria Cecilia G.

    2017-01-01

    BackgroundAstrocyte activation is one of the earliest findings in the brain of methamphetamine (Meth) abusers. Our goal in this study was to identify the characteristics of the astrocytic acute response to the drug, which may be critical in pathogenic outcomes secondary to the use.MethodsWe developed an integrated analysis of gene expression data to study the acute gene changes caused by the direct exposure to Meth treatment of astrocytes in vitro, and to better understand how astrocytes respond, what are the early molecular markers associated with this response. We examined the literature in search of similar changes in gene signatures that are found in central nervous system disorders.ResultsWe identified overexpressed gene networks represented by genes of an inflammatory and immune nature and that are implicated in neuroactive ligand-receptor interactions. The overexpressed networks are linked to molecules that were highly upregulated in astrocytes by all doses of methamphetamine tested and that could play a role in the central nervous system. The strongest overexpressed signatures were the upregulation of MAP2K5, GPR65, and CXCL5, and the gene networks individually associated with these molecules. Pathway analysis revealed that these networks are involved both in neuroprotection and in neuropathology. We have validated several targets associated to these genes.ConclusionsGene signatures for the astrocytic response to Meth were identified among the upregulated gene pool, using an in vitro system. The identified markers may participate in dysfunctions of the central nervous system but could also provide acute protection to the drug exposure. Further in vivo studies are necessary to establish the role of these gene networks in drug abuse pathogenesis.

  2. Cardiac potassium channel subtypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmitt, Nicole; Grunnet, Morten; Olesen, Søren-Peter

    2014-01-01

    About 10 distinct potassium channels in the heart are involved in shaping the action potential. Some of the K(+) channels are primarily responsible for early repolarization, whereas others drive late repolarization and still others are open throughout the cardiac cycle. Three main K(+) channels...... drive the late repolarization of the ventricle with some redundancy, and in atria this repolarization reserve is supplemented by the fairly atrial-specific KV1.5, Kir3, KCa, and K2P channels. The role of the latter two subtypes in atria is currently being clarified, and several findings indicate...... that they could constitute targets for new pharmacological treatment of atrial fibrillation. The interplay between the different K(+) channel subtypes in both atria and ventricle is dynamic, and a significant up- and downregulation occurs in disease states such as atrial fibrillation or heart failure...

  3. Influenza A Subtyping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaul, Karen L.; Mangold, Kathy A.; Du, Hongyan; Pesavento, Kristen M.; Nawrocki, John; Nowak, Jan A.

    2010-01-01

    Influenza virus subtyping has emerged as a critical tool in the diagnosis of influenza. Antiviral resistance is present in the majority of seasonal H1N1 influenza A infections, with association of viral strain type and antiviral resistance. Influenza A virus subtypes can be reliably distinguished by examining conserved sequences in the matrix protein gene. We describe our experience with an assay for influenza A subtyping based on matrix gene sequences. Viral RNA was prepared from nasopharyngeal swab samples, and real-time RT-PCR detection of influenza A and B was performed using a laboratory developed analyte-specific reagent-based assay that targets a conserved region of the influenza A matrix protein gene. FluA-positive samples were analyzed using a second RT-PCR assay targeting the matrix protein gene to distinguish seasonal influenza subtypes based on differential melting of fluorescence resonance energy transfer probes. The novel H1N1 influenza strain responsible for the 2009 pandemic showed a melting profile distinct from that of seasonal H1N1 or H3N2 and compatible with the predicted melting temperature based on the published novel H1N1 matrix gene sequence. Validation by comparison with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention real-time RT-PCR for swine influenza A (novel H1N1) test showed this assay to be both rapid and reliable (>99% sensitive and specific) in the identification of the novel H1N1 influenza A virus strain. PMID:20595627

  4. Thyroid hormones upregulate apolipoprotein E gene expression in astrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roman, Corina; Fuior, Elena V.; Trusca, Violeta G. [Institute of Cellular Biology and Pathology “Nicolae Simionescu”, Bucharest (Romania); Kardassis, Dimitris [University of Crete Medical School and Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Foundation for Research and Technology of Hellas, Heraklion, Crete (Greece); Simionescu, Maya [Institute of Cellular Biology and Pathology “Nicolae Simionescu”, Bucharest (Romania); Gafencu, Anca V., E-mail: anca.gafencu@icbp.ro [Institute of Cellular Biology and Pathology “Nicolae Simionescu”, Bucharest (Romania)

    2015-12-04

    Apolipoprotein E (apoE), a protein mainly involved in lipid metabolism, is associated with several neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease. Despite numerous attempts to elucidate apoE gene regulation in the brain, the exact mechanism is still uncovered. The mechanism of apoE gene regulation in the brain involves the proximal promoter and multienhancers ME.1 and ME.2, which evolved by gene duplication. Herein we questioned whether thyroid hormones and their nuclear receptors have a role in apoE gene regulation in astrocytes. Our data showed that thyroid hormones increase apoE gene expression in HTB14 astrocytes in a dose-dependent manner. This effect can be intermediated by the thyroid receptor β (TRβ) which is expressed in these cells. In the presence of triiodothyronine (T3) and 9-cis retinoic acid, in astrocytes transfected to overexpress TRβ and retinoid X receptor α (RXRα), apoE promoter was indirectly activated through the interaction with ME.2. To determine the location of TRβ/RXRα binding site on ME.2, we performed DNA pull down assays and found that TRβ/RXRα complex bound to the region 341–488 of ME.2. This result was confirmed by transient transfection experiments in which a series of 5′- and 3′-deletion mutants of ME.2 were used. These data support the existence of a biologically active TRβ binding site starting at 409 in ME.2. In conclusion, our data revealed that ligand-activated TRβ/RXRα heterodimers bind with high efficiency on tissue-specific distal regulatory element ME.2 and thus modulate apoE gene expression in the brain. - Highlights: • T3 induce a dose-dependent increase of apoE expression in astrocytes. • Thyroid hormones activate apoE promoter in a cell specific manner. • Ligand activated TRβ/RXRα bind on the distal regulatory element ME.2 to modulate apoE. • The binding site of TRβ/RXRα heterodimer is located at 409 bp on ME.2.

  5. Thyroid hormones upregulate apolipoprotein E gene expression in astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roman, Corina; Fuior, Elena V.; Trusca, Violeta G.; Kardassis, Dimitris; Simionescu, Maya; Gafencu, Anca V.

    2015-01-01

    Apolipoprotein E (apoE), a protein mainly involved in lipid metabolism, is associated with several neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease. Despite numerous attempts to elucidate apoE gene regulation in the brain, the exact mechanism is still uncovered. The mechanism of apoE gene regulation in the brain involves the proximal promoter and multienhancers ME.1 and ME.2, which evolved by gene duplication. Herein we questioned whether thyroid hormones and their nuclear receptors have a role in apoE gene regulation in astrocytes. Our data showed that thyroid hormones increase apoE gene expression in HTB14 astrocytes in a dose-dependent manner. This effect can be intermediated by the thyroid receptor β (TRβ) which is expressed in these cells. In the presence of triiodothyronine (T3) and 9-cis retinoic acid, in astrocytes transfected to overexpress TRβ and retinoid X receptor α (RXRα), apoE promoter was indirectly activated through the interaction with ME.2. To determine the location of TRβ/RXRα binding site on ME.2, we performed DNA pull down assays and found that TRβ/RXRα complex bound to the region 341–488 of ME.2. This result was confirmed by transient transfection experiments in which a series of 5′- and 3′-deletion mutants of ME.2 were used. These data support the existence of a biologically active TRβ binding site starting at 409 in ME.2. In conclusion, our data revealed that ligand-activated TRβ/RXRα heterodimers bind with high efficiency on tissue-specific distal regulatory element ME.2 and thus modulate apoE gene expression in the brain. - Highlights: • T3 induce a dose-dependent increase of apoE expression in astrocytes. • Thyroid hormones activate apoE promoter in a cell specific manner. • Ligand activated TRβ/RXRα bind on the distal regulatory element ME.2 to modulate apoE. • The binding site of TRβ/RXRα heterodimer is located at 409 bp on ME.2.

  6. Spatial organization of astrocytes in ferret visual cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    López‐Hidalgo, Mónica; Hoover, Walter B.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Astrocytes form an intricate partnership with neural circuits to influence numerous cellular and synaptic processes. One prominent organizational feature of astrocytes is the “tiling” of the brain with non‐overlapping territories. There are some documented species and brain region–specific astrocyte specializations, but the extent of astrocyte diversity and circuit specificity are still unknown. We quantitatively defined the rules that govern the spatial arrangement of astrocyte somata and territory overlap in ferret visual cortex using a combination of in vivo two‐photon imaging, morphological reconstruction, immunostaining, and model simulations. We found that ferret astrocytes share, on average, half of their territory with other astrocytes. However, a specific class of astrocytes, abundant in thalamo‐recipient cortical layers (“kissing” astrocytes), overlap markedly less. Together, these results demonstrate novel features of astrocyte organization indicating that different classes of astrocytes are arranged in a circuit‐specific manner and that tiling does not apply universally across brain regions and species. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:3561–3576, 2016. © 2016 The Authors The Journal of Comparative Neurology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27072916

  7. The computational power of astrocyte mediated synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogier eMin

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Research in the last two decades has made clear that astrocytes play a crucial role in the brain beyond their functions in energy metabolism and homeostasis. Many studies have shown that astrocytes can dynamically modulate neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity, and might participate in higher brain functions like learning and memory. With the plethora of astrocyte-mediated signaling processes described in the literature today, the current challenge is to identify which of these processes happen under what physiological condition, and how this shapes information processing and, ultimately, behavior. To answer these questions will require a combination of advanced physiological, genetical and behavioral experiments. Additionally, mathematical modeling will prove crucial for testing predictions on the possible functions of astrocytes in neuronal networks, and to generate novel ideas as to how astrocytes can contribute to the complexity of the brain. Here, we aim to provide an outline of how astrocytes can interact with neurons. We do this by reviewing recent experimental literature on astrocyte-neuron interactions, discussing the dynamic effects of astrocytes on neuronal excitability and short- and long-term synaptic plasticity. Finally, we will outline the potential computational functions that astrocyte-neuron interactions can serve in the brain. We will discuss how astrocytes could govern metaplasticity in the brain, how they might organize the clustering of synaptic inputs, and how they could function as memory elements for neuronal activity. We conclude that astrocytes can enhance the computational power of neuronal networks in previously unexpected ways.

  8. Class I HDAC inhibition is a novel pathway for regulating astrocytic apoE secretion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dresselhaus, Erica; Duerr, James M; Vincent, Fabien; Sylvain, Emily K; Beyna, Mercedes; Lanyon, Lorraine F; LaChapelle, Erik; Pettersson, Martin; Bales, Kelly R; Ramaswamy, Gayathri

    2018-01-01

    Despite the important role of apolipoprotein E (apoE) secretion from astrocytes in brain lipid metabolism and the strong association of apoE4, one of the human apoE isoforms, with sporadic and late onset forms of Alzheimer's disease (AD) little is known about the regulation of astrocytic apoE. Utilizing annotated chemical libraries and a phenotypic screening strategy that measured apoE secretion from a human astrocytoma cell line, inhibition of pan class I histone deacetylases (HDACs) was identified as a mechanism to increase apoE secretion. Knocking down select HDAC family members alone or in combination revealed that inhibition of the class I HDAC family was responsible for enhancing apoE secretion. Knocking down LXRα and LXRβ genes revealed that the increase in astrocytic apoE in response to HDAC inhibition occurred via an LXR-independent pathway. Collectively, these data suggest that pan class I HDAC inhibition is a novel pathway for regulating astrocytic apoE secretion.

  9. Recent molecular approaches to understanding astrocyte function in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David eDavila

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are a predominant glial cell type in the nervous systems, and are becoming recognized as important mediators of normal brain function as well as neurodevelopmental, neurological, and neurodegenerative brain diseases. Although numerous potential mechanisms have been proposed to explain the role of astrocytes in the normal and diseased brain, research into the physiological relevance of these mechanisms in vivo is just beginning. In this review, we will summarize recent developments in innovative and powerful molecular approaches, including knockout mouse models, transgenic mouse models, and astrocyte-targeted gene transfer/expression, which have led to advances in understanding astrocyte biology in vivo that were heretofore inaccessible to experimentation. We will examine the recently improved understanding of the roles of astrocytes - with an emphasis on astrocyte signaling - in the context of both the healthy and diseased brain, discuss areas where the role of astrocytes remains debated, and suggest new research directions.

  10. ASTROCYTES IN THE NEUROPROTECTION AFTER BRAIN STROKE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gloria Patricia Cardona Gomez

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are specialized glial cells of the nervous system, which have multiple homeostatic functions for the survival and maintenance of the neurovascular unit. It has been shown that astrocytes have critical role in the dynamics pro survival conferring neuroprotective, angiogenic, immunomodulatory, neurogenic, antioxidants and regulatory synapse functions (Shen et al 2012; Gimsa et al 2013; Proschel et al 2014; making them excellent candidates as the source of neuroprotection and neurorestauration of tissue affected by events ischemia and / or reperfusion. However, these cells also may be involved in negative responses such as reactive astrocytes and glial scar under chronic excitotoxic responses generated by these events. To know what are the key points in the pro and anti-survival responses of astrocytes, would allow use them as targets in cellular therapies. This review has aim to study the mechanisms for neuroprotection in these cells (Posada-Duque et al submitted, which would make them targets of cell therapy, through of inducing regeneration, such as vehicle for corrective molecular systems and trigger endogenous cellular events that can recover the tissue homeostasis, which is lost after progressive damage.

  11. Astrocytes in Alzheimer’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Verkhratsky, Alexei; Olabarria, Markel; Noristani, Harun N.; Yeh, Chia-Yu; Rodriguez, Jose Julio

    2010-01-01

    The circuitry of the human brain is formed by neuronal networks embedded into astroglial syncytia. The astrocytes perform numerous functions, providing for the overall brain homeostasis, assisting in neurogenesis, determining the micro-architecture of the grey matter, and defending the brain through evolutionary conserved astrogliosis programs.

  12. Immune Players in the CNS : The Astrocyte

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jensen, Cathy J.; Massie, Ann; De Keyser, Jacques

    In the finely balanced environment of the central nervous system astrocytes, the most numerous cell type, play a role in regulating almost every physiological system. First found to regulate extracellular ions and pH, they have since been shown to regulate neurotransmitter levels, cerebral blood

  13. Characterization of astrocytic and neuronal benzodiazepine receptors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bender, A.S.

    1988-01-01

    Primary cultures of astrocytes and neurons express benzodiazepine receptors. Neuronal benzodiazepine receptors were of high-affinity, K{sub D} values were 7.5-43 nM and the densities of receptors (B{sub max}) were 924-4131 fmol/mg protein. Astrocytes posses a high-affinity benzodiazepine receptor, K{sub D} values were 6.6-13 nM. The B{sub max} values were 6,033-12,000 fmol/mg protein. The pharmacological profile of the neuronal benzodiazepine receptor was that of the central-type benzodiazepine receptor, where clonazepam has a high-affinity and Ro 5-4864 (4{prime}-chlorodiazepam) has a low-affinity. Whereas astrocytic benzoidazepine receptor was characteristic of the so called peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptors, which shows a high-affinity towards Ro 5-4863, and a low-affinity towards clonazepam. The astrocytic benzodiazepine receptors was functionally correlated with voltage dependent calcium channels, since dihydropyridines and benzodiazepines interacted with ({sup 3}H) diazepam and ({sup 3}H) nitrendipine receptors with the same rank order of potency, showing a statistically significant correlation. No such correlation was observed in neurons.

  14. Identification of Multiple Subtypes of Campylobacter jejuni in Chicken Meat and the Impact on Source Attribution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John A. Hudson

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Most source attribution studies for Campylobacter use subtyping data based on single isolates from foods and environmental sources in an attempt to draw epidemiological inferences. It has been suggested that subtyping only one Campylobacter isolate per chicken carcass incurs a risk of failing to recognise the presence of clinically relevant, but numerically infrequent, subtypes. To investigate this, between 21 and 25 Campylobacter jejuni isolates from each of ten retail chicken carcasses were subtyped by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE using the two restriction enzymes SmaI and KpnI. Among the 227 isolates, thirteen subtypes were identified, the most frequently occurring subtype being isolated from three carcasses. Six carcasses carried a single subtype, three carcasses carried two subtypes each and one carcass carried three subtypes. Some subtypes carried by an individual carcass were shown to be potentially clonally related. Comparison of C. jejuni subtypes from chickens with isolate subtypes from human clinical cases (n = 1248 revealed seven of the thirteen chicken subtypes were indistinguishable from human cases. None of the numerically minor chicken subtypes were identified in the human data. Therefore, typing only one Campylobacter isolate from individual chicken carcasses may be adequate to inform Campylobacter source attribution.

  15. Thyroid hormone modulates the extracellular matrix organization and expression in cerebellar astrocyte: effects on astrocyte adhesion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trentin, Andréa Gonçalves; De Aguiar, Cláudia Beatriz Nedel Mendes; Garcez, Ricardo Castilho; Alvarez-Silva, Marcio

    2003-06-01

    The effects of thyroid hormone (T(3)) on extracellular matrix (ECM) expression and organization in cerebellar astrocytes were studied. Control astrocytes exhibit laminin immunostaining distributed in a punctate configuration and fibronectin concentrated in focal points at the cell surface. These cells attach to the substratum by membrane points, as shown by scanning microscopy, possibly by focal points stained to fibronectin. In contrast, after T(3) treatment, laminin assumes a fibrillary pattern and fibronectin becomes organized in filaments homogeneously distributed on the cell surface; the cells acquire a very flat and spread morphology. T(3) treatment also modulates astrocyte adhesion. In addition, increased expression of both laminin and fibronectin was detected by Western blot. These alterations in fibronectin and/or laminin production and organization may be involved in the flat and spread morphology and in altered adhesion. We observed that fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF(2)) added to cultures had similar effects to those described to T(3). Neutralizing antibodies against FGF(2) reversed T(3) effects on fibronectin and laminin distribution. We also observed that cerebellar neurons co-cultured on T(3)-treated astrocytes had an increase in the number of cells and presented longer neurites. Thus, we propose a novel mechanism of the effect of thyroid hormone on cerebellar development mediated by astrocytes: T(3) may induce astrocyte secretion of growth factors, mainly FGF(2), that autocrinally stimulate astrocyte proliferation, reorganization in ECM proteins, and alterations in cell spreading and adhesion. These effects may indirectly influence neuronal development. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Integrative subtype discovery in glioblastoma using iCluster.

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    Ronglai Shen

    Full Text Available Large-scale cancer genome projects, such as the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA project, are comprehensive molecular characterization efforts to accelerate our understanding of cancer biology and the discovery of new therapeutic targets. The accumulating wealth of multidimensional data provides a new paradigm for important research problems including cancer subtype discovery. The current standard approach relies on separate clustering analyses followed by manual integration. Results can be highly data type dependent, restricting the ability to discover new insights from multidimensional data. In this study, we present an integrative subtype analysis of the TCGA glioblastoma (GBM data set. Our analysis revealed new insights through integrated subtype characterization. We found three distinct integrated tumor subtypes. Subtype 1 lacks the classical GBM events of chr 7 gain and chr 10 loss. This subclass is enriched for the G-CIMP phenotype and shows hypermethylation of genes involved in brain development and neuronal differentiation. The tumors in this subclass display a Proneural expression profile. Subtype 2 is characterized by a near complete association with EGFR amplification, overrepresentation of promoter methylation of homeobox and G-protein signaling genes, and a Classical expression profile. Subtype 3 is characterized by NF1 and PTEN alterations and exhibits a Mesenchymal-like expression profile. The data analysis workflow we propose provides a unified and computationally scalable framework to harness the full potential of large-scale integrated cancer genomic data for integrative subtype discovery.

  17. Metabolism of Dopamine in Nucleus Accumbens Astrocytes Is Preserved in Aged Mice Exposed to MPTP

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    Brittany M. Winner

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson disease (PD is prevalent in elderly individuals and is characterized by selective degeneration of nigrostriatal dopamine (NSDA neurons. Interestingly, not all dopamine (DA neurons are affected equally by PD and aging, particularly mesolimbic (ML DA neurons. Here, effects of aging were examined on presynaptic DA synthesis, reuptake, metabolism and neurotoxicant susceptibility of NSDA and mesolimbic dopamine (MLDA neurons and astrocyte DA metabolism. There were no differences in phenotypic markers of DA synthesis, reuptake or metabolism in NSDA or MLDA neurons in aged mice, but MLDA neurons displayed lower DA stores. Astrocyte metabolism of DA to 3-methoxytyramine (3-MT in the striatum was decreased in aged mice, but was maintained in the nucleus accumbens. Despite diminished DA vesicular storage capacity in MLDA neurons, susceptibility to acute neurotoxicant exposure was similar in young and aged mice. These results reveal an age- and neurotoxicant-induced impairment of DA metabolic activity in astrocytes surrounding susceptible NSDA neurons as opposed to maintenance of DA metabolism in astrocytes surrounding resistant MLDA neurons, and suggest a possible therapeutic target for PD.

  18. Ischemic tolerance in pre-myelinated white matter: the role of astrocyte glycogen in brain pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fern, Robert

    2015-06-01

    In isolated white matter, ischemic tolerance changes dramatically in the period immediately before the onset of myelination. In the absence of an extrinsic energy source, postnatal day 0 to 2 (P0 to P2) white matter axons are here shown to maintain excitability for over twice as long as axons >P2, a differential that was dependent on glycogen metabolism. Prolonged withdrawal of extrinsic energy supply tended to spare axons in zones around astrocytes, which are shown to be the sole repository for glycogen particles in developing white matter. Analysis of mitochondrial volume fraction revealed that neither axons nor astrocytes had a low metabolic rate in neonatal white matter, while oligodendroglia at older ages had an elevated metabolism. The astrocyte population is established early in neural development, and exhibits reduced cell density as maturation progresses and white matter expands. The findings show that this event establishes the necessary conditions for ischemia sensitivity in white matter and indicates that astrocyte proximity may be significant for the survival of neuronal elements in conditions associated with compromised energy supply.

  19. Astrocyte mega-domain hypothesis of the autistic savantism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitterauer, Bernhard J

    2013-01-01

    Individuals with autism who show high abilities are called savants. Whereas in their brains a disconnection in and between neural networks has been identified, savantism is yet poorly understood. Focusing on astrocyte domain organization, it is hypothesized that local astrocyte mega-organizations may be responsible for exerting high capabilities in brains of autistic savants. Astrocytes, the dominant glial cell type, modulate synaptic information transmission. Each astrocyte is organized in non-overlapping domains. Formally, each astrocyte contacting n-neurons with m-synapses via its processes generates dynamic domains of synaptic interactions based on qualitative computation criteria, and hereby it structures neuronal information processing. If the number of processes is genetically significantly increased, these astrocytes operate in a mega-domain with a higher complexitiy of computation. From this model savant abilities are deduced. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Astrocytes in neurodegenerative diseases (I): function and molecular description.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guillamón-Vivancos, T; Gómez-Pinedo, U; Matías-Guiu, J

    2015-03-01

    Astrocytes have been considered mere supporting cells in the CNS. However, we now know that astrocytes are actively involved in many of the functions of the CNS and may play an important role in neurodegenerative diseases. This article reviews the roles astrocytes play in CNS development and plasticity; control of synaptic transmission; regulation of blood flow, energy, and metabolism; formation of the blood-brain barrier; regulation of the circadian rhythms, lipid metabolism and secretion of lipoproteins; and in neurogenesis. Astrocyte markers and the functions of astrogliosis are also described. Astrocytes play an active role in the CNS. A good knowledge of astrocytes is essential to understanding the mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases. Copyright © 2012 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.

  1. Calcium dynamics of cortical astrocytic networks in vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hajime Hirase

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Large and long-lasting cytosolic calcium surges in astrocytes have been described in cultured cells and acute slice preparations. The mechanisms that give rise to these calcium events have been extensively studied in vitro. However, their existence and functions in the intact brain are unknown. We have topically applied Fluo-4 AM on the cerebral cortex of anesthetized rats, and imaged cytosolic calcium fluctuation in astrocyte populations of superficial cortical layers in vivo, using two-photon laser scanning microscopy. Spontaneous [Ca(2+](i events in individual astrocytes were similar to those observed in vitro. Coordination of [Ca(2+](i events among astrocytes was indicated by the broad cross-correlograms. Increased neuronal discharge was associated with increased astrocytic [Ca(2+](i activity in individual cells and a robust coordination of [Ca(2+](i signals in neighboring astrocytes. These findings indicate potential neuron-glia communication in the intact brain.

  2. Differential diagnosis of oligodendroglial and astrocytic tumors using imaging results: the added value of perfusion MR imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoon, Hyun Jung [Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Department of Radiology and Center for Imaging Science, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Seoul St. Mary' s Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea, Department of Radiology, College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Ahn, Kook Jin; Lee, Song; Jang, Jin Hee; Choi, Hyun Seok; Jung, So Lyung; Kim, Bum Soo [Seoul St. Mary' s Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea, Department of Radiology, College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Jeun, Shin Soo; Hong, Yong Kil [Seoul St. Mary' s Hospital, The Catholic University of Korea, Department of Neurosurgery, College of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2017-07-15

    The purposes of the present study are to assess whether different characteristics of oligodendrogliomas and astrocytic tumors are visible on MR imaging and to determine the added value of perfusion imaging in conventional MR imaging when differentiating oligodendrogliomas from astrocytic tumors. We retrospectively studied 22 oligodendroglioma and 54 astrocytic tumor patients, including glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). The morphological tumor characteristics were evaluated using MR imaging. The rCBV, K{sup trans}, and V{sub e} values were recorded. All imaging and clinical values were compared. The ability to discriminate between the two entities was evaluated using receiver operating characteristic curve analyses. Separate comparison analysis between oligodendroglioma and astrocytic tumors excluding GBM was also performed. The presence of calcification, higher cortex involvement ratio, and lower V{sub e} value were more representative of oligodendrogliomas than astrocytic tumors (P = <0.001, 0.038, and <0.001, respectively). The area under the curve (AUC) value of a combination of calcification and cortex involvement ratio was 0.796. The combination of all three parameters, including V{sub e}, further increased the diagnostic performance (AUC = 0.881). Comparison test of the two AUC areas revealed significant difference (P = 0.0474). The presence of calcification and higher cortex involvement ratio were the only findings suggestive of oligodendrogliomas than astrocytic tumors with exclusion of GBMs (P = 0.014 and <0.001, respectively). Cortex involvement ratio and the presence of calcification with V{sub e} values were diagnostically accurate in identifying oligodendrogliomas. The V{sub e} value calculated from dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging could be a supportive tool for differentiating between oligodendrogliomas and astrocytic tumors including GBMs. (orig.)

  3. Proinflammatory cytokines downregulate connexin 43-gap junctions via the ubiquitin-proteasome system in rat spinal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fang Fang; Morioka, Norimitsu; Kitamura, Tomoya; Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2015-09-04

    Astrocytic gap junctions formed by connexin 43 (Cx43) are crucial for intercellular communication between spinal cord astrocytes. Various neurological disorders are associated with dysfunctional Cx43-gap junctions. However, the mechanism modulating Cx43-gap junctions in spinal astrocytes under pathological conditions is not entirely clear. A previous study showed that treatment of spinal astrocytes in culture with pro-inflammatory cytokines tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interferon-γ (IFN-γ) decreased both Cx43 expression and gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) via a c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK)-dependent pathway. The current study further elaborates the intracellular mechanism that decreases Cx43 under an inflammatory condition. Cycloheximide chase analysis revealed that TNF-α (10 ng/ml) alone or in combination with IFN-γ (5 ng/ml) accelerated the degradation of Cx43 protein in cultured spinal astrocytes. The reduction of both Cx43 expression and GJIC induced by a mixture of TNF-α and IFN-γ were blocked by pretreatment with proteasome inhibitors MG132 (0.5 μM) and epoxomicin (25 nM), a mixture of TNF-α and IFN-γ significantly increased proteasome activity and Cx43 ubiquitination. In addition, TNF-α and IFN-γ-induced activation of ubiquitin-proteasome systems was prevented by SP600125, a JNK inhibitor. Together, these results indicate that a JNK-dependent ubiquitin-proteasome system is induced under an inflammatory condition that disrupts astrocytic gap junction expression and function, leading to astrocytic dysfunction and the maintenance of the neuroinflammatory state. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Astrocyte-neuronal interactions in epileptogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadera, Mussie Ghezu; Eloqayli, Haytham; Jaradat, Saied; Nehlig, Astrid; Sonnewald, Ursula

    2015-07-01

    Pentylenetetrazol, kainic acid, or pilocarpine can be used to induce seizures in animal models of epilepsy. The present Review describes disturbances in astrocyte-neuron interactions in the acute, latent, and chronic phases analyzed by magnetic resonance spectroscopy of brain tissue extracts from rats injected with [1-(13)C]glucose and [1,2-(13)C]acetate. The most consistent change after onset of seizures was the decrease in (13)C labeling of glutamate (GLU) from [1-(13) C]glucose regardless of brain area, severity, or duration of the period with seizures and toxin used. In most cases this decrease was accompanied by a reduction in glutamine (GLN) labeling from [1-(13)C]glucose, presumably as a direct consequence of the reduction in labeling of GLU and the GLU-GLN cycle. Amounts of GLN were never changed. Reduction in the content of N-acetyl aspartate (NAA) was first detectable some time after status epilepticus but before the occurrence of spontaneous seizures. This decrease can be an indication of neuronal death and/or mitochondrial impairment and might indicate beginning gliosis. It is known that gliosis occurs in the chronic phase of temporal lobe epilepsy in hippocampus, but astrocyte metabolism appears normal in this phase, indicating that the gliotic astrocytes have a somewhat reduced metabolism per volume. A decrease in (13)C labeling of GLU from [1-(13)C]glucose is a very sensitive measure for the onset of epileptogenesis, whereas reduction of NAA is first detectable later. In the chronic phases of the hippocampal formation, astrocyte metabolism is upregulated given that the number of neurons is reduced. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Taurine Biosynthesis by Neurons and Astrocytes*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitvitsky, Victor; Garg, Sanjay K.; Banerjee, Ruma

    2011-01-01

    The physiological roles of taurine, a product of cysteine degradation and one of the most abundant amino acids in the body, remain elusive. Taurine deficiency leads to heart dysfunction, brain development abnormalities, retinal degradation, and other pathologies. The taurine synthetic pathway is proposed to be incomplete in astrocytes and neurons, and metabolic cooperation between these cell types is reportedly needed to complete the pathway. In this study, we analyzed taurine synthesis capability as reported by incorporation of radioactivity from [35S]cysteine into taurine, in primary murine astrocytes and neurons, and in several transformed cell lines (human (SH-SY5Y) and murine (N1E-115) neuroblastoma, human astrocytoma (U-87MG and 1321 N1), and rat glioma (C6)). Extensive incorporation of radioactivity from [35S]cysteine into taurine was observed in rat glioma cells as well as in primary mouse astrocytes and neurons, establishing the presence of an intact taurine synthesis pathway in these cells. Interestingly, exposure of cells to cysteine or cysteamine resulted in elevated intracellular hypotaurine without a corresponding increase in taurine levels, suggesting that oxidation of hypotaurine limits taurine synthesis in cells. Consistent with its role as an organic osmolyte, taurine synthesis was stimulated under hypertonic conditions in neurons. PMID:21778230

  6. Multifunctional role of astrocytes as gatekeepers of neuronal energy supply

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jillian L Stobart

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Dynamic adjustments to neuronal energy supply in response to synaptic activity are critical for neuronal function. Glial cells known as astrocytes have processes that ensheath most central synapses and express G-protein-coupled neurotransmitter receptors and transporters that respond to neuronal activity. Astrocytes also release substrates for neuronal oxidative phosphorylation and have processes that terminate on the surface of brain arterioles and can influence vascular smooth muscle tone and local blood flow. Membrane receptor or transporter-mediated effects of glutamate represent a convergence point of astrocyte influence on neuronal bioenergetics. Astrocytic glutamate uptake drives glycolysis and subsequent shuttling of lactate from astrocytes to neurons for oxidative metabolism. Astrocytes also convert synaptically reclaimed glutamate to glutamine, which is returned to neurons for glutamate salvage or oxidation. Finally, astrocytes store brain energy currency in the form of glycogen, which can be mobilized to produce lactate for neuronal oxidative phosphorylation in response to glutamatergic neurotransmission. These mechanisms couple synaptically-driven astrocytic responses to glutamate with release of energy substrates back to neurons to match demand with supply. In addition, astrocytes directly influence the tone of penetrating brain arterioles in response to glutamatergic neurotransmission, coordinating dynamic regulation of local blood flow. We will describe the role of astrocytes in neurometabolic and neurovascular coupling in detail and discuss, in turn, how astrocyte dysfunction may contribute to neuronal bioenergetic deficit and neurodegeneration. Understanding the role of astrocytes as a hub for neurometabolic and neurovascular coupling mechanisms is a critical underpinning for therapeutic development in a broad range of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by chronic generalized brain ischemia and brain microvascular

  7. Role of astrocytic transport processes in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, A; Sarup, A; Bak, L K

    2004-01-01

    The fine tuning of both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission is to a large extent dependent upon optimal function of astrocytic transport processes. Thus, glutamate transport in astrocytes is mandatory to maintain extrasynaptic glutamate levels sufficiently low to prevent excitotoxic...... neuronal damage. In GABA synapses hyperactivity of astroglial GABA uptake may lead to diminished GABAergic inhibitory activity resulting in seizures. As a consequence of this the expression and functional activity of astrocytic glutamate and GABA transport is regulated in a number of ways...

  8. Neuron-astrocyte signaling is preserved in the aging brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Gonzalo, Marta; Martin-Fernandez, Mario; Martínez-Murillo, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Jamison, Stephanie; Fernandez, Ana P; Serrano, Julia; Calero, Pilar; Futch, Hunter S; Corpas, Rubén; Sanfeliu, Coral; Perea, Gertrudis; Araque, Alfonso

    2017-04-01

    Astrocytes play crucial roles in brain homeostasis and are emerging as regulatory elements of neuronal and synaptic physiology by responding to neurotransmitters with Ca 2+ elevations and releasing gliotransmitters that activate neuronal receptors. Aging involves neuronal and astrocytic alterations, being considered risk factor for neurodegenerative diseases. Most evidence of the astrocyte-neuron signaling is derived from studies with young animals; however, the features of astrocyte-neuron signaling in adult and aging brain remain largely unknown. We have investigated the existence and properties of astrocyte-neuron signaling in physiologically and pathologically aging mouse hippocampal and cortical slices at different lifetime points (0.5 to 20 month-old animals). We found that astrocytes preserved their ability to express spontaneous and neurotransmitter-dependent intracellular Ca 2+ signals from juvenile to aging brains. Likewise, resting levels of gliotransmission, assessed by neuronal NMDAR activation by glutamate released from astrocytes, were largely preserved with similar properties in all tested age groups, but DHPG-induced gliotransmission was reduced in aged mice. In contrast, gliotransmission was enhanced in the APP/PS1 mouse model of Alzheimer's disease, indicating a dysregulation of astrocyte-neuron signaling in pathological conditions. Disruption of the astrocytic IP 3 R2 mediated-signaling, which is required for neurotransmitter-induced astrocyte Ca 2+ signals and gliotransmission, boosted the progression of amyloid plaque deposits and synaptic plasticity impairments in APP/PS1 mice at early stages of the disease. Therefore, astrocyte-neuron interaction is a fundamental signaling, largely conserved in the adult and aging brain of healthy animals, but it is altered in Alzheimer's disease, suggesting that dysfunctions of astrocyte Ca 2+ physiology may contribute to this neurodegenerative disease. GLIA 2017 GLIA 2017;65:569-580. © 2017 Wiley

  9. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Nan; Yao, Fang; Li, Ke; Zhang, Lanlan; Yin, Guo; Du, Mingjun; Wu, Bingyi

    2017-01-01

    Fisetin (3,3?,4?,7-tetrahydroxyflavone) is a plant flavonol found in fruits and vegetables that has been reported to inhibit migration and proliferation in several types of cancer. Reactive astrogliosis involves astrocyte migration and proliferation, and contributes to the formation of glial scars in central nervous system (CNS) disorders. However, the effect of fisetin on the migration and proliferation of astrocytes remains unclear. In this study, we found that fisetin inhibited astrocyte m...

  10. Astrocytes mediate in vivo cholinergic-induced synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Navarrete

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Long-term potentiation (LTP of synaptic transmission represents the cellular basis of learning and memory. Astrocytes have been shown to regulate synaptic transmission and plasticity. However, their involvement in specific physiological processes that induce LTP in vivo remains unknown. Here we show that in vivo cholinergic activity evoked by sensory stimulation or electrical stimulation of the septal nucleus increases Ca²⁺ in hippocampal astrocytes and induces LTP of CA3-CA1 synapses, which requires cholinergic muscarinic (mAChR and metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR activation. Stimulation of cholinergic pathways in hippocampal slices evokes astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations, postsynaptic depolarizations of CA1 pyramidal neurons, and LTP of transmitter release at single CA3-CA1 synapses. Like in vivo, these effects are mediated by mAChRs, and this cholinergic-induced LTP (c-LTP also involves mGluR activation. Astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations and LTP are absent in IP₃R2 knock-out mice. Downregulating astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal by loading astrocytes with BAPTA or GDPβS also prevents LTP, which is restored by simultaneous astrocyte Ca²⁺ uncaging and postsynaptic depolarization. Therefore, cholinergic-induced LTP requires astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations, which stimulate astrocyte glutamate release that activates mGluRs. The cholinergic-induced LTP results from the temporal coincidence of the postsynaptic activity and the astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal simultaneously evoked by cholinergic activity. Therefore, the astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal is necessary for cholinergic-induced synaptic plasticity, indicating that astrocytes are directly involved in brain storage information.

  11. Immune and inflammatory responses in the CNS : Modulation by astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Penkowa, Milena; aschner, michael; hidalgo, juan

    2008-01-01

    Beyond their long-recognized support functions, astrocytes are active partners of neurons in processing information, synaptic integration, and production of trophic factors, just to name a few. Both microglia and astrocytes produce and secrete a number of cytokines, modulating and integrating...... the communication between hematogenous cells and resident cells of the central nervous system (CNS). This review will address (1) the functions of astrocytes in the normal brain and (2) their role in surveying noxious stimuli within the brain, with particular emphasis on astrocytic responses to damage or disease...

  12. Astrocyte atrophy and immune dysfunction in self-harming macaques.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kim M Lee

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Self-injurious behavior (SIB is a complex condition that exhibits a spectrum of abnormal neuropsychological and locomotor behaviors. Mechanisms for neuropathogenesis could include irregular immune activation, host soluble factors, and astrocyte dysfunction. METHODS: We examined the role of astrocytes as modulators of immune function in macaques with SIB. We measured changes in astrocyte morphology and function. Paraffin sections of frontal cortices from rhesus macaques identified with SIB were stained for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP and Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2. Morphologic features of astrocytes were determined using computer-assisted camera lucida. RESULTS: There was atrophy of white matter astrocyte cell bodies, decreased arbor length in both white and gray matter astrocytes, and decreased bifurcations and tips on astrocytes in animals with SIB. This was combined with a five-fold increase in the proportion of astrocytes immunopositive for TLR2. CONCLUSIONS: These results provide direct evidence that SIB induces immune activation of astrocytes concomitant with quantifiably different morphology.

  13. Astrocytes, therapeutic targets for neuroprotection and neurorestoration in ischemic stroke

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhongwu; Chopp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell type within the central nervous system. They play essential roles in maintaining normal brain function, as they are a critical structural and functional part of the tripartite synapses and the neurovascular unit, and communicate with neurons, oligodendrocytes and endothelial cells. After an ischemic stroke, astrocytes perform multiple functions both detrimental and beneficial, for neuronal survival during the acute phase. Aspects of the astrocytic inflammatory response to stroke may aggravate the ischemic lesion, but astrocytes also provide benefit for neuroprotection, by limiting lesion extension via anti-excitotoxicity effects and releasing neurotrophins. Similarly, during the late recovery phase after stroke, the glial scar may obstruct axonal regeneration and subsequently reduce the functional outcome; however, astrocytes also contribute to angiogenesis, neurogenesis, synaptogenesis, and axonal remodeling, and thereby promote neurological recovery. Thus, the pivotal involvement of astrocytes in normal brain function and responses to an ischemic lesion designates them as excellent therapeutic targets to improve functional outcome following stroke. In this review, we will focus on functions of astrocytes and astrocyte-mediated events during stroke and recovery. We will provide an overview of approaches on how to reduce the detrimental effects and amplify the beneficial effects of astrocytes on neuroprotection and on neurorestoration post stroke, which may lead to novel and clinically relevant therapies for stroke. PMID:26455456

  14. A phase plane analysis of neuron-astrocyte interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amiri, Mahmood; Montaseri, Ghazal; Bahrami, Fariba

    2013-08-01

    Intensive experimental studies have shown that astrocytes are active partners in modulation of synaptic transmission. In the present research, we study neuron-astrocyte signaling using a biologically inspired model of one neuron synapsing one astrocyte. In this model, the firing dynamics of the neuron is described by the Morris-Lecar model and the Ca(2+) dynamics of a single astrocyte explained by a functional model introduced by Postnov and colleagues. Using the coupled neuron-astrocyte model and based on the results of the phase plane analyses, it is demonstrated that the astrocyte is able to activate the silent neuron or change the neuron spiking frequency through bidirectional communication. This suggests that astrocyte feedback signaling is capable of modulating spike transmission frequency by changing neuron spiking frequency. This effect is described by a saddle-node on invariant circle bifurcation in the coupled neuron-astrocyte model. In this way, our results suggest that the neuron-astrocyte crosstalk has a fundamental role in producing diverse neuronal activities and therefore enhances the information processing capabilities of the brain. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. The multi-dimensional roles of astrocytes in ALS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanaka, Koji; Komine, Okiru

    2018-01-01

    Despite significant progress in understanding the molecular and genetic aspects of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons, the precise and comprehensive pathomechanisms remain largely unknown. In addition to motor neuron involvement, recent studies using cellular and animal models of ALS indicate that there is a complex interplay between motor neurons and neighboring non-neuronal cells, such as astrocytes, in non-cell autonomous neurodegeneration. Astrocytes are key homeostatic cells that play numerous supportive roles in maintaining the brain environment. In neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS, astrocytes change their shape and molecular expression patterns and are referred to as reactive or activated astrocytes. Reactive astrocytes in ALS lose their beneficial functions and gain detrimental roles. In addition, interactions between motor neurons and astrocytes are impaired in ALS. In this review, we summarize growing evidence that astrocytes are critically involved in the survival and demise of motor neurons through several key molecules and cascades in astrocytes in both sporadic and inherited ALS. These observations strongly suggest that astrocytes have multi-dimensional roles in disease and are a viable therapeutic target for ALS. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Astrocytic β2 Adrenergic Receptor Gene Deletion Affects Memory in Aged Mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathy Joanna Jensen

    Full Text Available In vitro and in vivo studies suggest that the astrocytic adrenergic signalling enhances glycogenolysis which provides energy to be transported to nearby cells and in the form of lactate. This energy source is important for motor and cognitive functioning. While it is suspected that the β2-adrenergic receptor on astrocytes might contribute to this energy balance, it has not yet been shown conclusively in vivo. Inducible astrocyte specific β2-adrenergic receptor knock-out mice were generated by crossing homozygous β2-adrenergic receptor floxed mice (Adrb2flox and mice with heterozygous tamoxifen-inducible Cre recombinase-expression driven by the astrocyte specific L-glutamate/L-aspartate transporter promoter (GLAST-CreERT2. Assessments using the modified SHIRPA (SmithKline/Harwell/Imperial College/Royal Hospital/Phenotype Assessment test battery, swimming ability test, and accelerating rotarod test, performed at 1, 2 and 4 weeks, 6 and 12 months after tamoxifen (or vehicle administration did not reveal any differences in physical health or motor functions between the knock-out mice and controls. However deficits were found in the cognitive ability of aged, but not young adult mice, reflected in impaired learning in the Morris Water Maze. Similarly, long-term potentiation (LTP was impaired in hippocampal brain slices of aged knock-out mice maintained in low glucose media. Using microdialysis in cerebellar white matter we found no significant differences in extracellular lactate or glucose between the young adult knock-out mice and controls, although trends were detected. Our results suggest that β2-adrenergic receptor expression on astrocytes in mice may be important for maintaining cognitive health at advanced age, but is dispensable for motor function.

  17. GABAergic inhibition through synergistic astrocytic neuronal interaction transiently decreases vasopressin neuronal activity during hypoosmotic challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yu-Feng; Sun, Min-Yu; Hou, Qiuling; Hamilton, Kathryn A

    2013-04-01

    The neuropeptide vasopressin is crucial to mammalian osmotic regulation. Local hypoosmotic challenge transiently decreases and then increases vasopressin secretion. To investigate mechanisms underlying this transient response, we examined the effects of hypoosmotic challenge on the electrical activity of rat hypothalamic supraoptic nucleus (SON) vasopressin neurons using patch-clamp recordings. We found that 5 min exposure of hypothalamic slices to hypoosmotic solution transiently increased inhibitory postsynaptic current (IPSC) frequency and reduced the firing rate of vasopressin neurons. Recovery occurred by 10 min of exposure, even though the osmolality remained low. The γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor blocker, gabazine, blocked the IPSCs and the hypoosmotic suppression of firing. The gliotoxin l-aminoadipic acid blocked the increase in IPSC frequency at 5 min and the recovery of firing at 10 min, indicating astrocytic involvement in hypoosmotic modulation of vasopressin neuronal activity. Moreover, β-alanine, an osmolyte of astrocytes and GABA transporter (GAT) inhibitor, blocked the increase in IPSC frequency at 5 min of hypoosmotic challenge. Confocal microscopy of immunostained SON sections revealed that astrocytes and magnocellular neurons both showed positive staining of vesicular GATs (VGAT). Hypoosmotic stimulation in vivo reduced the number of VGAT-expressing neurons, and increased co-localisation and molecular association of VGAT with glial fibrillary acidic protein that increased significantly by 10 min. By 30 min, neuronal VGAT labelling was partially restored, and astrocytic VGAT was relocated to the ventral portion while it decreased in the somatic zone of the SON. Thus, synergistic astrocytic and neuronal GABAergic inhibition could ensure that vasopressin neuron firing is only transiently suppressed under hypoosmotic conditions. © 2013 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  18. THYROID HORMONE TREATED ASTROCYTES INDUCE MATURATION OF CEREBRAL CORTICAL NEURONS THROUGH MODULATION OF PROTEOGLYCAN LEVELS

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    Romulo Sperduto Dezonne

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Proper brain neuronal circuitry formation and synapse development is dependent on specific cues, either genetic or epigenetic, provided by the surrounding neural environment. Within these signals, thyroid hormones (T3 and T4 play crucial role in several steps of brain morphogenesis including proliferation of progenitor cells, neuronal differentiation, maturation, migration, and synapse formation. The lack of thyroid hormones during childhood is associated with several impair neuronal connections, cognitive deficits, and mental disorders. Many of the thyroid hormones effects are mediated by astrocytes, although the mechanisms underlying these events are still unknown. In this work, we investigated the effect of 3, 5, 3’-triiodothyronine-treated (T3-treated astrocytes on cerebral cortex neuronal differentiation. Culture of neural progenitors from embryonic cerebral cortex mice onto T3-treated astrocyte monolayers yielded an increment in neuronal population, followed by enhancement of neuronal maturation, arborization and neurite outgrowth. In addition, real time PCR assays revealed an increase in the levels of the heparan sulfate proteoglycans, Glypican 1 (GPC-1 and Syndecans 3 e 4 (SDC-3 e SDC-4, followed by a decrease in the levels of the chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan, Versican. Disruption of glycosaminoglycan chains by chondroitinase AC or heparanase III completely abolished the effects of T3-treated astrocytes on neuronal morphogenesis. Our work provides evidence that astrocytes are key mediators of T3 actions on cerebral cortex neuronal development and identified potential molecules and pathways involved in neurite extension; which might eventually contribute to a better understanding of axonal regeneration, synapse formation and neuronal circuitry recover.

  19. Pure type systems with subtyping

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwanenburg, J.; Girard, J.-Y.

    1999-01-01

    We extend the framework of Pure Type Systems with subtyping, as found in F = ¿ . This leads to a concise description of many existing systems with subtyping, and also to some new interesting systems. We develop the meta-theory for this framework, including Subject Reduction and Minimal Typing. The

  20. Arctigenin Increases Hemeoxygenase-1 Gene Expression by Modulating PI3K/AKT Signaling Pathway in Rat Primary Astrocytes.

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    Jeong, Yeon-Hui; Park, Jin-Sun; Kim, Dong-Hyun; Kim, Hee-Sun

    2014-11-01

    In the present study, we found that the natural compound arctigenin inhibited hydrogen peroxide-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in rat primary astrocytes. Since hemeoxygenase-1 (HO-1) plays a critical role as an antioxidant defense factor in the brain, we examined the effect of arctigenin on HO-1 expression in rat primary astrocytes. We found that arctigenin increased HO-1 mRNA and protein levels. Arctigenin also increases the nuclear translocation and DNA binding of Nrf2/c-Jun to the antioxidant response element (ARE) on HO-1 promoter. In addition, arctigenin increased ARE-mediated transcriptional activities in rat primary astrocytes. Further mechanistic studies revealed that arctigenin increased the phosphorylation of AKT, a downstream substrate of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K). Treatment of cells with a PI3K-specific inhibitor, LY294002, suppressed the HO-1 expression, Nrf2 DNA binding and ARE-mediated transcriptional activities in arctigenin-treated astrocyte cells. The results collectively suggest that PI3K/AKT signaling pathway is at least partly involved in HO-1 expression by arctigenin via modulation of Nrf2/ARE axis in rat primary astrocytes.

  1. In vivo CHI3L1 (YKL-40 expression in astrocytes in acute and chronic neurological diseases

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    Hamilton Ronald L

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background CHI3L1 (YKL-40 is up-regulated in a variety of inflammatory conditions and cancers. We have previously reported elevated CHI3L1 concentration in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF of human and non-human primates with lentiviral encephalitis and using immunohistochemistry showed that CHI3L1 was associated with astrocytes. Methods In the current study CHI3L1 transcription and expression were evaluated in a variety of acute and chronic human neurological diseases. Results ELISA revealed significant elevation of CHI3L1 in the CSF of multiple sclerosis (MS patients as well as mild elevation with aging. In situ hybridization (ISH showed CHI3L1 transcription mostly associated with reactive astrocytes, that was more pronounced in inflammatory conditions like lentiviral encephalitis and MS. Comparison of CHI3L1 expression in different stages of brain infarction showed that YKL40 was abundantly expressed in astrocytes during acute phases and diminished to low levels in chronic infarcts. Conclusions Taken together, these findings demonstrate that CHI3L1 is induced in astrocytes in a variety of neurological diseases but that it is most abundantly associated with astrocytes in regions of inflammatory cells.

  2. Two classes of astrocytes in the adult human and pig retina in terms of their expression of high affinity NGF receptor (TrkA).

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    Ruiz-Ederra, Javier; Hitchcock, Peter F; Vecino, Elena

    2003-02-13

    Astrocytes have been implicated in axon guidance and synaptic regeneration in the retina and these processes involve activation of the high affinity nerve growth factor receptor, known as the tyrosine kinase A (TrkA) receptor. The purpose of the present study was to characterize the expression of TrkA in astrocytes of the adult pig and human retina. To this end, sections of human and pig retinas were immunolabeled with a combination of antibodies to glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and TrkA. Our study revealed that most of the GFAP-positive cells express TrkA, whereas a rare, novel subpopulation of astrocytes was found to be devoid of TrkA. Our results support the idea that astrocytes play an important neurotrophic role in the retina.

  3. Liposomal clodronate selectively eliminates microglia from primary astrocyte cultures

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    Kumamaru Hiromi

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is increasing interest in astrocyte biology because astrocytes have been demonstrated to play prominent roles in physiological and pathological conditions of the central nervous system, including neuroinflammation. To understand astrocyte biology, primary astrocyte cultures are most commonly used because of the direct accessibility of astrocytes in this system. However, this advantage can be hindered by microglial contamination. Although several authors have warned regarding microglial contamination in this system, complete microglial elimination has never been achieved. Methods The number and proliferative potential of contaminating microglia in primary astrocyte cultures were quantitatively assessed by immunocytologic and flow cytometric analyses. To examine the utility of clodronate for microglial elimination, primary astrocyte cultures or MG-5 cells were exposed to liposomal or free clodronate, and then immunocytologic, flow cytometric, and gene expression analyses were performed. The gene expression profiles of microglia-eliminated and microglia-contaminated cultures were compared after interleukin-6 (IL-6 stimulation. Results The percentage of contaminating microglia exceeded 15% and continued to increase because of their high proliferative activity in conventional primary astrocyte cultures. These contaminating microglia were selectively eliminated low concentration of liposomal clodronate. Although primary microglia and MG-5 cells were killed by both liposomal and free clodronate, free clodronate significantly affected the viability of astrocytes. In contrast, liposomal clodronate selectively eliminated microglia without affecting the viability, proliferation or activation of astrocytes. The efficacy of liposomal clodronate was much higher than that of previously reported methods used for decreasing microglial contamination. Furthermore, we observed rapid tumor necrosis factor-α and IL-1b gene induction in

  4. Transcriptomic analyses of primary astrocytes under TNFα treatment

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    Cindy Birck

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes, the most abundant glial cell population in the central nervous system, have important functional roles in the brain as blood brain barrier maintenance, synaptic transmission or intercellular communications [1,2]. Numerous studies suggested that astrocytes exhibit a functional and morphological high degree of plasticity. For example, following any brain injury, astrocytes become reactive and hypertrophic. This phenomenon, also called reactive gliosis, is characterized by a set of progressive gene expression and cellular changes [3]. Interestingly, in this context, astrocytes can re-acquire neurogenic properties. It has been shown that astrocytes can undergo dedifferentiation upon injury and inflammation, and may re-acquire the potentiality of neural progenitors [4,5,6,7].To assess the effect of inflammation on astrocytes, primary mouse astrocytes were treated with tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα, one of the main pro-inflammatory cytokines. The strength of this study is that pure primary astrocytes were used. As microglia are highly reactive immune cells, we used a magnetic cell sorting separation (MACS method to further obtain highly pure astrocyte cultures devoid of microglia.Here, we provide details of the microarray data, which have been deposited in the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO under the series accession number GSE73022. The analysis and interpretation of these data are included in Gabel et al. (2015. Analysis of gene expression indicated that the NFκB pathway-associated genes were induced after a TNFα treatment. We have shown that primary astrocytes devoid of microglia can respond to a TNFα treatment with the re-expression of genes implicated in the glial cell development. Keywords: Primary astrocytes, Inflammation, Microarrays, Gene expression

  5. Appreciating HIV-1 diversity: subtypic differences in ENV

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gnanakaran, S [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Shen, Tongye [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Lynch, Rebecca M [NON LANL; Derdeyn, Cynthia A [NON LANL

    2008-01-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) group M is responsible for the current AIDS pandemic and exhibits exceedingly high levels of viral genetic diversity around the world, necessitating categorization of viruses into distinct lineages, or subtypes. These subtypes can differ by around 35% in the envelope (Env) glycoproteins of the virus, which are displayed on the surface of the virion and are targets for both neutralizing antibody and cell-mediated immune responses. This diversity reflects the remarkable ability of the virus to adapt to selective pressures, the bulk of which is applied by the host immune response, and represents a serious obstacle for developing an effective vaccine with broad coverage. Thus, it is important to understand the underlying biological consequences of inter-subtype diversity. Recent studies have revealed that the HIV-1 subtypes exhibit phenotypic differences that result from subtle differences in Env structure, particularly within the highly immunogenic V3 domain, which participates directly in viral entry. This review will therefore explore current research that describes subtypic differences in Env at the genetic and phenotypic level, focusing in particular on V3, and highlighting recent discoveries about the unique features of subtype C Env, which is the most prevalent subtype globally.

  6. A Triple Culture Model of the Blood-Brain Barrier Using Porcine Brain Endothelial cells, Astrocytes and Pericytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomsen, Louiza Bohn; Burkhart, Annette; Moos, Torben

    2015-01-01

    In vitro blood-brain barrier (BBB) models based on primary brain endothelial cells (BECs) cultured as monoculture or in co-culture with primary astrocytes and pericytes are useful for studying many properties of the BBB. The BECs retain their expression of tight junction proteins and efflux transporters leading to high trans-endothelial electric resistance (TEER) and low passive paracellular permeability. The BECs, astrocytes and pericytes are often isolated from small rodents. Larger species as cows and pigs however, reveal a higher yield, are readily available and have a closer resemblance to humans, which make them favorable high-throughput sources for cellular isolation. The aim of the present study has been to determine if the preferable combination of purely porcine cells isolated from the 6 months old domestic pigs, i.e. porcine brain endothelial cells (PBECs) in co-culture with porcine astrocytes and pericytes, would compare with PBECs co-cultured with astrocytes and pericytes isolated from newborn rats with respect to TEER value and low passive permeability. The astrocytes and pericytes were grown both as contact and non-contact co-cultures as well as in triple culture to examine their effects on the PBECs for barrier formation as revealed by TEER, passive permeability, and expression patterns of tight junction proteins, efflux transporters and the transferrin receptor. This syngenic porcine in vitro BBB model is comparable to triple cultures using PBECs, rat astrocytes and rat pericytes with respect to TEER formation, low passive permeability, and expression of hallmark proteins signifying the brain endothelium (tight junction proteins claudin 5 and occludin, the efflux transporters P-glycoprotein (PgP) and breast cancer related protein (BCRP), and the transferrin receptor).

  7. A Triple Culture Model of the Blood-Brain Barrier Using Porcine Brain Endothelial cells, Astrocytes and Pericytes.

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    Louiza Bohn Thomsen

    Full Text Available In vitro blood-brain barrier (BBB models based on primary brain endothelial cells (BECs cultured as monoculture or in co-culture with primary astrocytes and pericytes are useful for studying many properties of the BBB. The BECs retain their expression of tight junction proteins and efflux transporters leading to high trans-endothelial electric resistance (TEER and low passive paracellular permeability. The BECs, astrocytes and pericytes are often isolated from small rodents. Larger species as cows and pigs however, reveal a higher yield, are readily available and have a closer resemblance to humans, which make them favorable high-throughput sources for cellular isolation. The aim of the present study has been to determine if the preferable combination of purely porcine cells isolated from the 6 months old domestic pigs, i.e. porcine brain endothelial cells (PBECs in co-culture with porcine astrocytes and pericytes, would compare with PBECs co-cultured with astrocytes and pericytes isolated from newborn rats with respect to TEER value and low passive permeability. The astrocytes and pericytes were grown both as contact and non-contact co-cultures as well as in triple culture to examine their effects on the PBECs for barrier formation as revealed by TEER, passive permeability, and expression patterns of tight junction proteins, efflux transporters and the transferrin receptor. This syngenic porcine in vitro BBB model is comparable to triple cultures using PBECs, rat astrocytes and rat pericytes with respect to TEER formation, low passive permeability, and expression of hallmark proteins signifying the brain endothelium (tight junction proteins claudin 5 and occludin, the efflux transporters P-glycoprotein (PgP and breast cancer related protein (BCRP, and the transferrin receptor.

  8. Molecular subtypes of Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Fede, Giuseppe; Catania, Marcella; Maderna, Emanuela; Ghidoni, Roberta; Benussi, Luisa; Tonoli, Elisa; Giaccone, Giorgio; Moda, Fabio; Paterlini, Anna; Campagnani, Ilaria; Sorrentino, Stefano; Colombo, Laura; Kubis, Adriana; Bistaffa, Edoardo; Ghetti, Bernardino; Tagliavini, Fabrizio

    2018-02-19

    Protein misfolding and aggregation is a central feature of several neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease (AD), in which assemblies of amyloid β (Aβ) peptides accumulate in the brain in the form of parenchymal and/or vascular amyloid. A widely accepted concept is that AD is characterized by distinct clinical and neuropathological phenotypes. Recent studies revealed that Aβ assemblies might have structural differences among AD brains and that such pleomorphic assemblies can correlate with distinct disease phenotypes. We found that in both sporadic and inherited forms of AD, amyloid aggregates differ in the biochemical composition of Aβ species. These differences affect the physicochemical properties of Aβ assemblies including aggregation kinetics, resistance to degradation by proteases and seeding ability. Aβ-amyloidosis can be induced and propagated in animal models by inoculation of brain extracts containing aggregated Aβ. We found that brain homogenates from AD patients with different molecular profiles of Aβ are able to induce distinct patterns of Aβ-amyloidosis when injected into mice. Overall these data suggest that the assembly of mixtures of Aβ peptides into different Aβ seeds leads to the formation of distinct subtypes of amyloid having distinctive physicochemical and biological properties which result in the generation of distinct AD molecular subgroups.

  9. Deciphering the Astrocyte Reaction in Alzheimer’s Disease

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    Beatriz G. Perez-Nievas

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Reactive astrocytes were identified as a component of senile amyloid plaques in the cortex of Alzheimer’s disease (AD patients several decades ago. However, their role in AD pathophysiology has remained elusive ever since, in part owing to the extrapolation of the literature from primary astrocyte cultures and acute brain injury models to a chronic neurodegenerative scenario. Recent accumulating evidence supports the idea that reactive astrocytes in AD acquire neurotoxic properties, likely due to both a gain of toxic function and a loss of their neurotrophic effects. However, the diversity and complexity of this glial cell is only beginning to be unveiled, anticipating that astrocyte reaction might be heterogeneous as well. Herein we review the evidence from mouse models of AD and human neuropathological studies and attempt to decipher the main conundrums that astrocytes pose to our understanding of AD development and progression. We discuss the morphological features that characterize astrocyte reaction in the AD brain, the consequences of astrocyte reaction for both astrocyte biology and AD pathological hallmarks, and the molecular pathways that have been implicated in this reaction.

  10. Synapse-specific astrocyte gating of amygdala-related behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Fernandez, Mario; Jamison, Stephanie; Robin, Laurie M; Zhao, Zhe; Martin, Eduardo D; Aguilar, Juan; Benneyworth, Michael A; Marsicano, Giovanni; Araque, Alfonso

    2017-11-01

    The amygdala plays key roles in fear and anxiety. Studies of the amygdala have largely focused on neuronal function and connectivity. Astrocytes functionally interact with neurons, but their role in the amygdala remains largely unknown. We show that astrocytes in the medial subdivision of the central amygdala (CeM) determine the synaptic and behavioral outputs of amygdala circuits. To investigate the role of astrocytes in amygdala-related behavior and identify the underlying synaptic mechanisms, we used exogenous or endogenous signaling to selectively activate CeM astrocytes. Astrocytes depressed excitatory synapses from basolateral amygdala via A 1 adenosine receptor activation and enhanced inhibitory synapses from the lateral subdivision of the central amygdala via A 2A receptor activation. Furthermore, astrocytic activation decreased the firing rate of CeM neurons and reduced fear expression in a fear-conditioning paradigm. Therefore, we conclude that astrocyte activity determines fear responses by selectively regulating specific synapses, which indicates that animal behavior results from the coordinated activity of neurons and astrocytes.

  11. Computational Models for Calcium-Mediated Astrocyte Functions

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    Tiina Manninen

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The computational neuroscience field has heavily concentrated on the modeling of neuronal functions, largely ignoring other brain cells, including one type of glial cell, the astrocytes. Despite the short history of modeling astrocytic functions, we were delighted about the hundreds of models developed so far to study the role of astrocytes, most often in calcium dynamics, synchronization, information transfer, and plasticity in vitro, but also in vascular events, hyperexcitability, and homeostasis. Our goal here is to present the state-of-the-art in computational modeling of astrocytes in order to facilitate better understanding of the functions and dynamics of astrocytes in the brain. Due to the large number of models, we concentrated on a hundred models that include biophysical descriptions for calcium signaling and dynamics in astrocytes. We categorized the models into four groups: single astrocyte models, astrocyte network models, neuron-astrocyte synapse models, and neuron-astrocyte network models to ease their use in future modeling projects. We characterized the models based on which earlier models were used for building the models and which type of biological entities were described in the astrocyte models. Features of the models were compared and contrasted so that similarities and differences were more readily apparent. We discovered that most of the models were basically generated from a small set of previously published models with small variations. However, neither citations to all the previous models with similar core structure nor explanations of what was built on top of the previous models were provided, which made it possible, in some cases, to have the same models published several times without an explicit intention to make new predictions about the roles of astrocytes in brain functions. Furthermore, only a few of the models are available online which makes it difficult to reproduce the simulation results and further develop

  12. Computational Models for Calcium-Mediated Astrocyte Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manninen, Tiina; Havela, Riikka; Linne, Marja-Leena

    2018-01-01

    The computational neuroscience field has heavily concentrated on the modeling of neuronal functions, largely ignoring other brain cells, including one type of glial cell, the astrocytes. Despite the short history of modeling astrocytic functions, we were delighted about the hundreds of models developed so far to study the role of astrocytes, most often in calcium dynamics, synchronization, information transfer, and plasticity in vitro , but also in vascular events, hyperexcitability, and homeostasis. Our goal here is to present the state-of-the-art in computational modeling of astrocytes in order to facilitate better understanding of the functions and dynamics of astrocytes in the brain. Due to the large number of models, we concentrated on a hundred models that include biophysical descriptions for calcium signaling and dynamics in astrocytes. We categorized the models into four groups: single astrocyte models, astrocyte network models, neuron-astrocyte synapse models, and neuron-astrocyte network models to ease their use in future modeling projects. We characterized the models based on which earlier models were used for building the models and which type of biological entities were described in the astrocyte models. Features of the models were compared and contrasted so that similarities and differences were more readily apparent. We discovered that most of the models were basically generated from a small set of previously published models with small variations. However, neither citations to all the previous models with similar core structure nor explanations of what was built on top of the previous models were provided, which made it possible, in some cases, to have the same models published several times without an explicit intention to make new predictions about the roles of astrocytes in brain functions. Furthermore, only a few of the models are available online which makes it difficult to reproduce the simulation results and further develop the models. Thus

  13. Astrocytes Control Neuronal Excitability in the Nucleus Accumbens

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    Tommaso Fellin

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Though accumulating evidence shows that the metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5 mediates some of the actions of extracellular glutamate after cocaine use, the cellular events underlying this action are poorly understood. In this review, we will discuss recent results showing that mGluR5 receptors are key regulators of astrocyte activity. Synaptic release of glutamate activates mGluR5 expressed in perisynaptic astrocytes and generates intense Ca2+ signaling in these cells. Ca2+ oscillations, in turn, trigger the release from astrocytes of the gliotransmitter glutamate, which modulates neuronal excitability by activating NMDA receptors. By integrating these results with the most recent evidence demonstrating the importance of astrocytes in the regulation of neuronal excitability, we propose that astrocytes are involved in mediating some of the mGluR5-dependent drug-induced behaviors.

  14. Involvement of astrocyte metabolic coupling in Tourette syndrome pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Leeuw, Christiaan; Goudriaan, Andrea; Smit, August B; Yu, Dongmei; Mathews, Carol A; Scharf, Jeremiah M; Verheijen, Mark H G; Posthuma, Danielle

    2015-11-01

    Tourette syndrome is a heritable neurodevelopmental disorder whose pathophysiology remains unknown. Recent genome-wide association studies suggest that it is a polygenic disorder influenced by many genes of small effect. We tested whether these genes cluster in cellular function by applying gene-set analysis using expert curated sets of brain-expressed genes in the current largest available Tourette syndrome genome-wide association data set, involving 1285 cases and 4964 controls. The gene sets included specific synaptic, astrocytic, oligodendrocyte and microglial functions. We report association of Tourette syndrome with a set of genes involved in astrocyte function, specifically in astrocyte carbohydrate metabolism. This association is driven primarily by a subset of 33 genes involved in glycolysis and glutamate metabolism through which astrocytes support synaptic function. Our results indicate for the first time that the process of astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling may be an important contributor to Tourette syndrome pathogenesis.

  15. Investigation on the suitable pressure for the preservation of astrocyte

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sotome, S; Shimizu, A; Nakajima, K; Yoshimura, Y

    2010-01-01

    The effects of pressure on the survival rate of astrocytes in growth medium (DMEM) were investigated at room temperature and at 4 0 C, in an effort to establish the best conditions for the preservation. Survival rate at 4 0 C was found to be higher than that at room temperature. The survival rate of astrocytes preserved for 4 days at 4 0 C increased with increasing pressure up to 1.6 MPa, but decreased with increasing pressure above 1.6 MPa. At 10 MPa, all astrocytes died. The survival rate of cultured astrocytes decreased significantly following pressurization for 2 hours and the subsequent preservation for 2 days at atmospheric pressure. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain pressure when preserving astrocytes. These results indicate that the cells can be stored at 4 0 C under pressurization without freezing and without adding cryoprotective agents. Moreover, it may be possible to use this procedure as a new preservation method when cryopreservation is impractical.

  16. Phagocytic response of astrocytes to damaged neighboring cells.

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    Nicole M Wakida

    Full Text Available This study aims to understand the phagocytic response of astrocytes to the injury of neurons or other astrocytes at the single cell level. Laser nanosurgery was used to damage individual cells in both primary mouse cortical astrocytes and an established astrocyte cell line. In both cases, the release of material/substances from laser-irradiated astrocytes or neurons induced a phagocytic response in near-by astrocytes. Propidium iodide stained DNA originating from irradiated cells was visible in vesicles of neighboring cells, confirming phagocytosis of material from damaged cortical cells. In the presence of an intracellular pH indicator dye, newly formed vesicles correspond to acidic pH fluorescence, thus suggesting lysosome bound degradation of cellular debris. Cells with shared membrane connections prior to laser damage had a significantly higher frequency of induced phagocytosis compared to isolated cells with no shared membrane. The increase in phagocytic response of cells with a shared membrane occurred regardless of the extent of shared membrane (a thin filopodial connection vs. a cell cluster with significant shared membrane. In addition to the presence (or lack of a membrane connection, variation in phagocytic ability was also observed with differences in injury location within the cell and distance separating isolated astrocytes. These results demonstrate the ability of an astrocyte to respond to the damage of a single cell, be it another astrocyte, or a neuron. This single-cell level of analysis results in a better understanding of the role of astrocytes to maintain homeostasis in the CNS, particularly in the sensing and removal of debris in damaged or pathologic nervous tissue.

  17. α-Synuclein transfer between neurons and astrocytes indicates that astrocytes play a role in degradation rather than in spreading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loria, Frida; Vargas, Jessica Y; Bousset, Luc; Syan, Sylvie; Salles, Audrey; Melki, Ronald; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2017-11-01

    Recent evidence suggests that disease progression in Parkinson's disease (PD) could occur by the spreading of α-synuclein (α-syn) aggregates between neurons. Here we studied the role of astrocytes in the intercellular transfer and fate of α-syn fibrils, using in vitro and ex vivo models. α-Syn fibrils can be transferred to neighboring cells; however, the transfer efficiency changes depending on the cell types. We found that α-syn is efficiently transferred from astrocytes to astrocytes and from neurons to astrocytes, but less efficiently from astrocytes to neurons. Interestingly, α-syn puncta are mainly found inside the lysosomal compartments of the recipient cells. However, differently from neurons, astrocytes are able to efficiently degrade fibrillar α-syn, suggesting an active role for these cells in clearing α-syn deposits. Astrocytes co-cultured with organotypic brain slices are able to take up α-syn fibrils from the slices. Altogether our data support a role for astrocytes in trapping and clearing α-syn pathological deposits in PD.

  18. Avian metapneumovirus subtype A in China and subtypes A and B in Nigeria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owoade, A A; Ducatez, M F; Hübschen, J M; Sausy, A; Chen, H; Guan, Y; Muller, C P

    2008-09-01

    In order to detect and characterize avian metapneumovirus, organs or swabs were collected from 697 chicken and 110 turkeys from commercial farms in Southwestern Nigeria and from 107 chickens from live bird markets in Southeastern China. In Nigeria, 15% and 6% of the chicken and turkey samples, respectively, and 39% of the chicken samples from China, were positive for aMPV genome by PCR. The sequence of a 400 nt fragment of the attachment protein gene (G gene) revealed the presence of aMPV subtype A in both Nigeria and Southeastern China. Essentially identical subtype A viruses were found in both countries and were also previously reported from Brazil and the United Kingdom, suggesting a link between these countries or a common source of this subtype. In Nigeria, subtype B was also found, which may be a reflection of chicken importations from most major poultry-producing countries in Europe and Asia. In order to justify countermeasures, further studies are warranted to better understand the metapneumoviruses and their impact on poultry production.

  19. Phosphoinositide metabolism and adrenergic receptors in astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Noble, E.P.; Ritchie, T.; de Vellis, J.

    1986-01-01

    Agonist-induced phosphoinositide (PI) breakdown functions as a signal generating system. Diacylglycerol, one breakdown product of phosphotidylinositol-4,5-diphosphate hydrolysis, can stimulate protein kinase C, whereas inositol triphosphate, the other product, has been proposed to be a second messenger for Ca ++ mobilization. Using purified astrocyte cultures from neonatal rat brain, the effects of adrenergic agonists and antagonists at 10 -5 M were measured on PI breakdown. Astrocytes grown in culture were prelabeled with ( 3 H)inositol, and basal ( 3 H) inositol phosphate (IP 1 ) accumulation was measured in the presence of Li + . Epinephrine > norepinephrine (NE) were the most active stimulants of IP 1 production. The α 1 adrenoreceptor blockers, phentolamine and phenoxybenzamine, added alone had no effect on IP 1 production was reduced below basal levels. Propranolol partially blocked the effects of NE. Clonidine and isoproterenol, separately added, reduced IP 1 below basal levels and when added together diminished IP 1 accumulation even further. The role of adrenergic stimulation in the production of c-AMP

  20. Thyroid hormone action: Astrocyte-neuron communication.

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    Beatriz eMorte

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Thyroid hormone action is exerted mainly through regulation of gene expression by binding of T3 to the nuclear receptors. T4 plays an important role as a source of intracellular T3 in the central nervous system via the action of the type 2 deiodinase, expressed in the astrocytes. A model of T3 availability to neural cells has been proposed and validated. The model contemplates that brain T3 has a double origin: a fraction is available directly from the circulation, and another is produced locally from T4 in the astrocytes by type 2 deiodinase. The fetal brain depends almost entirely on the T3 generated locally. The contribution of systemic T3 increases subsequently during development to account for approximately 50% of total brain T3 in the late postnatal and adult stages. In this article we review the experimental data in support of this model, and how the factors affecting T3 availability in the brain, such as deiodinases and transporters, play a decisive role in modulating local thyroid hormone action during development.

  1. Extracellular matrix of cultured glial cells: Selective expression of chondroitin 4-sulfate by type-2 astrocytes and their progenitors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gallo, V.; Bertolotto, A.

    1990-01-01

    We have studied the extracellular matrix composition of cultured glial cells by immunocytochemistry with different monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies. Double immunofluorescence experiments and metabolic labeling with [3H]glucosamine performed in different types of cerebellar and cortical cultures showed that bipotential progenitors for type-2 astrocytes and for oligodendrocytes synthesize chondroitin sulfate (CS) and deposit this proteoglycan in their extracellular matrix. The distribution of the various [3H]glucosamine-labeled glycosaminoglycans between the intracellular and the extracellular space was different. CS was present both within the cells and in the culture medium, although in different amounts. Bi-potential progenitors became also O4-positive during their development in vitro. At the stage of O4-positivity they were still stained with antibodies against CS. However, when the progenitor cells were maintained in serum-free medium and differentiated into Gal-C-positive oligodendrocytes, they became CS-negative. In the presence of fetal calf serum in the culture medium, the bipotential progenitors differentiated into GFAP-positive type-2 astrocytes. These cells still expressed CS: their Golgi area and their surface were stained with anti-CS antibodies. Staining with monoclonal antibodies specific for different types of CS (4-sulfate, 6-sulfate, and unsulfated) revealed that both bipotential progenitors and type-2 astrocytes synthesized only chondroitin 4-sulfate. Type-1 astrocytes were negative for both the polyclonal and the monoclonal anti-CS antibodies. Finally, type-2 astrocytes and their progenitors were weakly stained with anti-laminin antibodies and unstained with anti-fibronectin. Type-1 astrocytes were positive for both anti-laminin and anti-fibronectin antibodies and appeared to secrete fibronectin in the extracellular space

  2. Astrocytic Gap Junctional Communication is Reduced in Amyloid-β-Treated Cultured Astrocytes, but not in Alzheimer's Disease Transgenic Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nancy F Cruz

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer's disease is characterized by accumulation of amyloid deposits in brain, progressive cognitive deficits and reduced glucose utilization. Many consequences of the disease are attributed to neuronal dysfunction, but roles of astrocytes in its pathogenesis are not well understood. Astrocytes are extensively coupled via gap junctions, and abnormal trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules within astrocytic syncytia could alter functional interactions among cells comprising the neurovascular unit. To evaluate the influence of amyloid-β on astrocyte gap junctional communication, cultured astrocytes were treated with monomerized amyloid-β1-40 (1 μmol/l for intervals ranging from 2 h to 5 days, and the areas labelled by test compounds were determined by impaling a single astrocyte with a micropipette and diffusion of material into coupled cells. Amyloid-β-treated astrocytes had rapid, sustained 50-70% reductions in the area labelled by Lucifer Yellow, anionic Alexa Fluor® dyes and energy-related compounds, 6-NBDG (a fluorescent glucose analogue, NADH and NADPH. Amyloid-β treatment also caused a transient increase in oxidative stress. In striking contrast with these results, spreading of Lucifer Yellow within astrocytic networks in brain slices from three regions of 8.5-14-month-old control and transgenic Alzheimer's model mice was variable, labelling 10-2000 cells; there were no statistically significant differences in the number of dye-labelled cells among the groups or with age. Thus amyloid-induced dysfunction of gap junctional communication in cultured astrocytes does not reflect the maintenance of dye transfer through astrocytic syncytial networks in transgenic mice; the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease is not appropriately represented by the cell culture system.

  3. Astrocytic gap junctional communication is reduced in amyloid-β-treated cultured astrocytes, but not in Alzheimer's disease transgenic mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruz, Nancy F; Ball, Kelly K; Dienel, Gerald A

    2010-08-17

    Alzheimer's disease is characterized by accumulation of amyloid deposits in brain, progressive cognitive deficits and reduced glucose utilization. Many consequences of the disease are attributed to neuronal dysfunction, but roles of astrocytes in its pathogenesis are not well understood. Astrocytes are extensively coupled via gap junctions, and abnormal trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules within astrocytic syncytia could alter functional interactions among cells comprising the neurovascular unit. To evaluate the influence of amyloid-beta on astrocyte gap junctional communication, cultured astrocytes were treated with monomerized amyloid-β(1-40) (1 μmol/l) for intervals ranging from 2 h to 5 days, and the areas labelled by test compounds were determined by impaling a single astrocyte with a micropipette and diffusion of material into coupled cells. Amyloid-β-treated astrocytes had rapid, sustained 50-70% reductions in the area labelled by Lucifer Yellow, anionic Alexa Fluor® dyes and energy-related compounds, 6-NBDG (a fluorescent glucose analogue), NADH and NADPH. Amyloid-β treatment also caused a transient increase in oxidative stress. In striking contrast with these results, spreading of Lucifer Yellow within astrocytic networks in brain slices from three regions of 8.5-14-month-old control and transgenic Alzheimer's model mice was variable, labelling 10-2000 cells; there were no statistically significant differences in the number of dye-labelled cells among the groups or with age. Thus amyloid-induced dysfunction of gap junctional communication in cultured astrocytes does not reflect the maintenance of dye transfer through astrocytic syncytial networks in transgenic mice; the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease is not appropriately represented by the cell culture system.

  4. Direct Signaling from Astrocytes to Neurons in Cultures of Mammalian Brain Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nedergaard, Maiken

    1994-03-01

    Although astrocytes have been considered to be supportive, rather than transmissive, in the adult nervous system, recent studies have challenged this assumption by demonstrating that astrocytes possess functional neurotransmitter receptors. Astrocytes are now shown to directly modulate the free cytosolic calcium, and hence transmission characteristics, of neighboring neurons. When a focal electric field potential was applied to single astrocytes in mixed cultures of rat forebrain astrocytes and neurons, a prompt elevation of calcium occurred in the target cell. This in turn triggered a wave of calcium increase, which propagated from astrocyte to astrocyte. Neurons resting on these astrocytes responded with large increases in their concentration of cytosolic calcium. The gap junction blocker octanol attenuated the neuronal response, which suggests that the astrocytic-neuronal signaling is mediated through intercellular connections rather than synaptically. This neuronal response to local astrocytic stimulation may mediate local intercellular communication within the brain.

  5. Electric field-induced astrocyte alignment directs neurite outgrowth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, John K; Fuss, Babette; Colello, Raymond J

    2006-05-01

    The extension and directionality of neurite outgrowth are key to achieving successful target connections during both CNS development and during the re-establishment of connections lost after neural trauma. The degree of axonal elongation depends, in large part, on the spatial arrangement of astrocytic processes rich in growth-promoting proteins. Because astrocytes in culture align their processes on exposure to an electrical field of physiological strength, we sought to determine the extent to which aligned astrocytes affect neurite outgrowth. To this end, dorsal root ganglia cells were seeded onto cultured rat astrocytes that were pre-aligned by exposure to an electric field of physiological strength (500 mV mm(-1)). Using confocal microscopy and digital image analysis, we found that neurite outgrowth at 24 hours and at 48 hours is enhanced significantly and directed consistently along the aligned astrocyte processes. Moreover, this directed neurite outgrowth is maintained when grown on fixed, aligned astrocytes. Collectively, these results indicate that endogenous electric fields present within the developing CNS might act to align astrocyte processes, which can promote and direct neurite growth. Furthermore, these results demonstrate a simple method to produce an aligned cellular substrate, which might be used to direct regenerating neurites.

  6. The role of astrocytes in multiple sclerosis pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero-García, J J

    2017-09-25

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a demyelinating autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS), in which astrocytes play an important role as CNS immune cells. However, the activity of astrocytes as antigen-presenting cells (APC) continues to be subject to debate. This review analyses the existing evidence on the participation of astrocytes in CNS inflammation in MS and on several mechanisms that modify astrocyte activity in the disease. Astrocytes play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of MS because they express toll-like receptors (TLR) and major histocompatibility complex (MHC) classI andII. In addition, astrocytes participate in regulating the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and in modulating T cell activity through the production of cytokines. Future studies should focus on the role of astrocytes in order to find new therapeutic targets for the treatment of MS. Copyright © 2017 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  7. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schulze, Wiebke [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Hayata-Takano, Atsuko [Molecular Research Center for Children' s Mental Development, United Graduate School of Child Development, Osaka University, Kanazawa University, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Chiba University and University of Fukui, 2-2 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Kamo, Toshihiko [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Nakazawa, Takanobu, E-mail: takanobunakazawa-tky@umin.ac.jp [iPS Cell-based Research Project on Brain Neuropharmacology and Toxicology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Nagayasu, Kazuki [iPS Cell-based Research Project on Brain Neuropharmacology and Toxicology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Kasai, Atsushi; Seiriki, Kaoru [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Interdisciplinary Program for Biomedical Sciences, Institute for Academic Initiatives, Osaka University, 1-1 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Shintani, Norihito [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Ago, Yukio [Laboratory of Medicinal Pharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Farfan, Camille [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); and others

    2015-03-27

    Systematic and simultaneous analysis of multiple cell types in the brain is becoming important, but such tools have not yet been adequately developed. Here, we aimed to generate a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes, two major cell types in the brain, and we have developed lentiviral vectors to express the red fluorescent protein tdTomato in neurons and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in astrocytes. Importantly, both fluorescent proteins are fused to histone 2B protein (H2B) to confer nuclear localization to distinguish between single cells. We also constructed several expression constructs, including a tandem alignment of the neuron- and astrocyte-expression cassettes for simultaneous labeling. Introducing these vectors and constructs in vitro and in vivo resulted in cell type-specific and nuclear-localized fluorescence signals enabling easy detection and distinguishability of neurons and astrocytes. This tool is expected to be utilized for the simultaneous analysis of changes in neurons and astrocytes in healthy and diseased brains. - Highlights: • We develop a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes. • Neuron-specific labeling is achieved using Scg10 and synapsin promoters. • Astrocyte-specific labeling is generated using the minimal GFAP promoter. • Nuclear localization of fluorescent proteins is achieved with histone 2B protein.

  8. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schulze, Wiebke; Hayata-Takano, Atsuko; Kamo, Toshihiko; Nakazawa, Takanobu; Nagayasu, Kazuki; Kasai, Atsushi; Seiriki, Kaoru; Shintani, Norihito; Ago, Yukio; Farfan, Camille

    2015-01-01

    Systematic and simultaneous analysis of multiple cell types in the brain is becoming important, but such tools have not yet been adequately developed. Here, we aimed to generate a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes, two major cell types in the brain, and we have developed lentiviral vectors to express the red fluorescent protein tdTomato in neurons and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in astrocytes. Importantly, both fluorescent proteins are fused to histone 2B protein (H2B) to confer nuclear localization to distinguish between single cells. We also constructed several expression constructs, including a tandem alignment of the neuron- and astrocyte-expression cassettes for simultaneous labeling. Introducing these vectors and constructs in vitro and in vivo resulted in cell type-specific and nuclear-localized fluorescence signals enabling easy detection and distinguishability of neurons and astrocytes. This tool is expected to be utilized for the simultaneous analysis of changes in neurons and astrocytes in healthy and diseased brains. - Highlights: • We develop a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes. • Neuron-specific labeling is achieved using Scg10 and synapsin promoters. • Astrocyte-specific labeling is generated using the minimal GFAP promoter. • Nuclear localization of fluorescent proteins is achieved with histone 2B protein

  9. Age-Related Gene Expression in the Frontal Cortex Suggests Synaptic Function Changes in Specific Inhibitory Neuron Subtypes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leon French

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide expression profiling of the human brain has revealed genes that are differentially expressed across the lifespan. Characterizing these genes adds to our understanding of both normal functions and pathological conditions. Additionally, the specific cell-types that contribute to the motor, sensory and cognitive declines during aging are unclear. Here we test if age-related genes show higher expression in specific neural cell types. Our study leverages data from two sources of murine single-cell expression data and two sources of age-associations from large gene expression studies of postmortem human brain. We used nonparametric gene set analysis to test for age-related enrichment of genes associated with specific cell-types; we also restricted our analyses to specific gene ontology groups. Our analyses focused on a primary pair of single-cell expression data from the mouse visual cortex and age-related human post-mortem gene expression information from the orbitofrontal cortex. Additional pairings that used data from the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, somatosensory cortex and blood were used to validate and test specificity of our findings. We found robust age-related up-regulation of genes that are highly expressed in oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, while genes highly expressed in layer 2/3 glutamatergic neurons were down-regulated across age. Genes not specific to any neural cell type were also down-regulated, possibly due to the bulk tissue source of the age-related genes. A gene ontology-driven dissection of the cell-type enriched genes highlighted the strong down-regulation of genes involved in synaptic transmission and cell-cell signaling in the Somatostatin (Sst neuron subtype that expresses the cyclin dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6 and in the vasoactive intestinal peptide (Vip neuron subtype expressing myosin binding protein C, slow type (Mybpc1. These findings provide new insights into cell specific susceptibility to normal aging

  10. [Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 subtypes in Djibouti].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abar, A Elmi; Jlizi, A; Darar, H Youssouf; Ben Nasr, M; Abid, S; Kacem, M Ali Ben Hadj; Slim, A

    2012-01-01

    The authors had for aim to study the distribution of HIV-1 subtypes in a cohort of HIV positive patients in the hospital General Peltier of Djibouti. An epidemiological study was made on 40 HIV-1 positive patients followed up in the Infectious Diseases Department over three months. All patients sample were subtyped by genotyping. Thirty-five patients (15 men and 20 women) were found infected by an HIV-1 strain belonging to the M group. Genotyping revealed that - 66% of samples were infected with subtype C, 20% with CRF02_AG, 8.5% with B, 2.9% with CRF02_AG/C and 2.9% with K/C. In fact, Subtype C prevalence has been described in the Horn of Africa and a similar prevalence was previously reported in Djibouti. However our study describes the subtype B in Djibouti for the first time. It is the predominant subtype in the Western world. The detection of CRF02_AG strains indicates that they are still circulating in Djibouti, the only country in East Africa in which this recombinant virus was found. CRF02_AG recombinant isolates were primarily described in West and Central Africa. The presence of this viral heterogeneity, probably coming from the mixing of populations in Djibouti, which is an essential economic and geographical crossroads, incites us to vigilance in the surveillance of this infection.

  11. The synaptic cell adhesion molecule, SynCAM1, mediates astrocyte-to-astrocyte and astrocyte-to-GnRH neuron adhesiveness in the mouse hypothalamus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandau, Ursula S; Mungenast, Alison E; McCarthy, Jack; Biederer, Thomas; Corfas, Gabriel; Ojeda, Sergio R

    2011-06-01

    We previously identified synaptic cell adhesion molecule 1 (SynCAM1) as a component of a genetic network involved in the hypothalamic control of female puberty. Although it is well established that SynCAM1 is a synaptic adhesion molecule, its contribution to hypothalamic function is unknown. Here we show that, in addition to the expected neuronal localization illustrated by its presence in GnRH neurons, SynCAM1 is expressed in hypothalamic astrocytes. Cell adhesion assays indicated that SynCAM is recognized by both GnRH neurons and astrocytes as an adhesive partner and promotes cell-cell adhesiveness via homophilic, extracellular domain-mediated interactions. Alternative splicing of the SynCAM1 primary mRNA transcript yields four mRNAs encoding membrane-spanning SynCAM1 isoforms. Variants 1 and 4 are predicted to be both N and O glycosylated. Hypothalamic astrocytes and GnRH-producing GT1-7 cells express mainly isoform 4 mRNA, and sequential N- and O-deglycosylation of proteins extracted from these cells yields progressively smaller SynCAM1 species, indicating that isoform 4 is the predominant SynCAM1 variant expressed in astrocytes and GT1-7 cells. Neither cell type expresses the products of two other SynCAM genes (SynCAM2 and SynCAM3), suggesting that SynCAM-mediated astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-GnRH neuron adhesiveness is mostly mediated by SynCAM1 homophilic interactions. When erbB4 receptor function is disrupted in astrocytes, via transgenic expression of a dominant-negative erbB4 receptor form, SynCAM1-mediated adhesiveness is severely compromised. Conversely, SynCAM1 adhesive behavior is rapidly, but transiently, enhanced in astrocytes by ligand-dependent activation of erbB4 receptors, suggesting that erbB4-mediated events affecting SynCAM1 function contribute to regulate astrocyte adhesive communication.

  12. Human astrocytes: secretome profiles of cytokines and chemokines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung S Choi

    Full Text Available Astrocytes play a key role in maintenance of neuronal functions in the central nervous system by producing various cytokines, chemokines, and growth factors, which act as a molecular coordinator of neuron-glia communication. At the site of neuroinflammation, astrocyte-derived cytokines and chemokines play both neuroprotective and neurotoxic roles in brain lesions of human neurological diseases. At present, the comprehensive profile of human astrocyte-derived cytokines and chemokines during inflammation remains to be fully characterized. We investigated the cytokine secretome profile of highly purified human astrocytes by using a protein microarray. Non-stimulated human astrocytes in culture expressed eight cytokines, including G-CSF, GM-CSF, GROα (CXCL1, IL-6, IL-8 (CXCL8, MCP-1 (CCL2, MIF and Serpin E1. Following stimulation with IL-1β and TNF-α, activated astrocytes newly produced IL-1β, IL-1ra, TNF-α, IP-10 (CXCL10, MIP-1α (CCL3 and RANTES (CCL5, in addition to the induction of sICAM-1 and complement component 5. Database search indicated that most of cytokines and chemokines produced by non-stimulated and activated astrocytes are direct targets of the transcription factor NF-kB. These results indicated that cultured human astrocytes express a distinct set of NF-kB-target cytokines and chemokines in resting and activated conditions, suggesting that the NF-kB signaling pathway differentially regulates gene expression of cytokines and chemokines in human astrocytes under physiological and inflammatory conditions.

  13. Is there an astrocyte-neuron ketone body shuttle?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzmán, M; Blázquez, C

    2001-01-01

    Ketone bodies can replace glucose as the major source of brain energy when glucose becomes scarce. Although it is generally assumed that the liver supplies extrahepatic tissues with ketone bodies, recent evidence shows that astrocytes are also ketogenic cells. Moreover, the partitioning of fatty acids between ketogenesis and ceramide synthesis de novo might control the survival/death decision of neural cells. These findings support the notion that astrocytes might supply neurons with ketone bodies in situ, and raise the possibility that astrocyte ketogenesis is a cytoprotective pathway.

  14. Endothelial-astrocytic interactions in acute liver failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, A R; Norenberg, M D

    2013-06-01

    Brain edema and the subsequent increase in intracranial pressure are major neurological complications of acute liver failure (ALF), and swelling of astrocytes (cytotoxic brain edema) is the most prominent neuropathological abnormality in ALF. Recent studies, however, have suggested the co-existence of cytotoxic and vasogenic mechanisms in the brain edema associated with ALF. This review 1) summarizes the nature of the brain edema in humans and experimental animals with ALF; 2) reviews in vitro studies supporting the presence of cytotoxic brain edema (cell swelling in cultured astrocytes); and 3) documents the role of brain endothelial cells in the development of astrocyte swelling/brain edema in ALF.

  15. Oxidative metabolism of astrocytes is not reduced in hepatic encephalopathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Iversen, Peter; Mouridsen, Kim; Hansen, Mikkel B

    2014-01-01

    In patients with impaired liver function and hepatic encephalopathy (HE), consistent elevations of blood ammonia concentration suggest a crucial role in the pathogenesis of HE. Ammonia and acetate are metabolized in brain both primarily in astrocytes. Here, we used dynamic [(11)C]acetate PET...... of the brain to measure the contribution of astrocytes to the previously observed reduction of brain oxidative metabolism in patients with liver cirrhosis and HE, compared to patients with cirrhosis without HE, and to healthy subjects. We used a new kinetic model to estimate uptake from blood to astrocytes...

  16. The Endo-Lysosomal System of Brain Endothelial Cells Is Influenced by Astrocytes In Vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toth, Andrea E; Siupka, Piotr; P Augustine, Thomas J; Venø, Susanne T; Thomsen, Louiza B; Moos, Torben; Lohi, Hannes T; Madsen, Peder; Lykke-Hartmann, Karin; Nielsen, Morten S

    2018-03-20

    Receptor- and adsorptive-mediated transport through brain endothelial cells (BEC) of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) involves a complex array of subcellular vesicular structures, the endo-lysosomal system. It consists of several types of vesicles, such as early, recycling, and late endosomes, retromer-positive structures, and lysosomes. Since this system is important for receptor-mediated transcytosis of drugs across brain capillaries, our aim was to characterise the endo-lysosomal system in BEC with emphasis on their interactions with astrocytes. We used primary porcine BEC in monoculture and in co-culture with primary rat astrocytes. The presence of astrocytes changed the intraendothelial vesicular network and significantly impacted vesicular number, morphology, and distribution. Additionally, gene set enrichment analysis revealed that 60 genes associated with vesicular trafficking showed altered expression in co-cultured BEC. Cytosolic proteins involved in subcellular trafficking were investigated to mark transport routes, such as RAB25 for transcytosis. Strikingly, the adaptor protein called AP1-μ1B, important for basolateral sorting in epithelial cells, was not expressed in BEC. Altogether, our data pin-point unique features of BEC trafficking network, essentially mapping the endo-lysosomal system of in vitro BBB models. Consequently, our findings constitute a valuable basis for planning the optimal route across the BBB when advancing drug delivery to the brain.

  17. Metabolic communication between astrocytes and neurons via bicarbonate-responsive soluble adenylyl cyclase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Hyun B; Gordon, Grant R J; Zhou, Ning; Tai, Chao; Rungta, Ravi L; Martinez, Jennifer; Milner, Teresa A; Ryu, Jae K; McLarnon, James G; Tresguerres, Martin; Levin, Lonny R; Buck, Jochen; MacVicar, Brian A

    2012-09-20

    Astrocytes are proposed to participate in brain energy metabolism by supplying substrates to neurons from their glycogen stores and from glycolysis. However, the molecules involved in metabolic sensing and the molecular pathways responsible for metabolic coupling between different cell types in the brain are not fully understood. Here we show that a recently cloned bicarbonate (HCO₃⁻) sensor, soluble adenylyl cyclase (sAC), is highly expressed in astrocytes and becomes activated in response to HCO₃⁻ entry via the electrogenic NaHCO₃ cotransporter (NBC). Activated sAC increases intracellular cAMP levels, causing glycogen breakdown, enhanced glycolysis, and the release of lactate into the extracellular space, which is subsequently taken up by neurons for use as an energy substrate. This process is recruited over a broad physiological range of [K⁺](ext) and also during aglycemic episodes, helping to maintain synaptic function. These data reveal a molecular pathway in astrocytes that is responsible for brain metabolic coupling to neurons. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Astrocyte and Oligodendrocyte Connexins of the Glial Syncytium in Relation to Astrocyte Anatomical Domains and Spatial Buffering

    OpenAIRE

    NAGY, JAMES I.; RASH, JOHN E.

    2003-01-01

    Astroctyes express a set of three connexins (Cx26, Cx30, and Cx43) that are contained in astrocyte-to-astrocyte (A/A) gap junctions; oligodendrocytes express a different set of three connexins (Cx29, Cx32, and Cx47) that are contained in the oligodendrocyte side of necessarily heterotypic astrocyte-to-oligodendrocyte (A/O) gap junctions, and there is little ultrastructural evidence for gap junction formation between individual oligodendrocytes. In addition, primarily Cx29 and Cx32 are contain...

  19. Channel-Mediated Lactate Release by K+-Stimulated Astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Sotelo-Hitschfeld, T.; Niemeyer, M. I.; Machler, P.; Ruminot, I.; Lerchundi, R.; Wyss, M. T.; Stobart, J.; Fernandez-Moncada, I.; Valdebenito, R.; Garrido-Gerter, P.; Contreras-Baeza, Y.; Schneider, B. L.; Aebischer, P.; Lengacher, S.; San Martin, A.; Le Douce, J.; Bonvento, G.; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Sepulveda, F. V.; Weber, B.; Barros, L. F.

    2015-01-01

    in response to local field stimulation. The existence of an astrocytic lactate reservoir and its quick mobilization via an ion channel in response to a neuronal cue provides fresh support to lactate roles in neuronal fueling and in gliotransmission.

  20. A critical role for astrocytes in hypercapnic vasodilation in brain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Howarth, C; Sutherland, B A; Choi, H B

    2017-01-01

    increases in astrocyte calcium signaling which in turn stimulates COX-1 activity and generates downstream PgE2 production. We demonstrate that astrocyte calcium-evoked production of the vasodilator, PgE2, is critically dependent on brain levels of the antioxidant, glutathione. These data suggest a novel......Cerebral blood flow (CBF) is controlled by arterial blood pressure, arterial CO2, arterial O2, and brain activity and is largely constant in the awake state. Although small changes in arterial CO2 are particularly potent to change CBF (1 mmHg variation in arterial CO2 changes CBF by 3...... in brain slices with in vivo work in rats and C57Bl/6J mice to examine the hemodynamic responses to CO2 and somatosensory stimulation before and after inhibition of astrocytic glutathione and PgE2 synthesis. We demonstrate that hypercapnia (increased CO2) evokes an increase in astrocyte [Ca(2+)]i...

  1. Astrocyte regulation of sleep circuits: experimental and modeling perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tommaso eFellin

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Integrated within neural circuits, astrocytes have recently been shown to modulate brain rhythms thought to mediate sleep function. Experimental evidence suggests that local impact of astrocytes on single synapses translates into global modulation of neuronal networks and behavior. We discuss these findings in the context of current conceptual models of sleep generation and function, each of which have historically focused on neural mechanisms. We highlight the implications and the challenges introduced by these results from a conceptual and computational perspective. We further provide modeling directions on how these data might extend our knowledge of astrocytic properties and sleep function. Given our evolving understanding of how local cellular activities during sleep lead to functional outcomes for the brain, further mechanistic and theoretical understanding of astrocytic contribution to these dynamics will undoubtedly be of great basic and translational benefit.

  2. Phosphorylation in the C-terminal domain of Aquaporin-4 is required for Golgi transition in primary cultured astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kadohira, Ikuko; Abe, Yoichiro; Nuriya, Mutsuo; Sano, Kazumi; Tsuji, Shoji; Arimitsu, Takeshi; Yoshimura, Yasunori; Yasui, Masato

    2008-01-01

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) is expressed in the perivascular and subpial astrocytes end-feet in mammalian brain, and plays a critical component of an integrated water and potassium homeostasis. Here we examine whether AQP4 is phosphorylated in primary cultured mouse astrocytes. Astrocytes were metabolically labeled with [ 32 P]phosphoric acid, then AQP4 was immunoprecipitated with anti-AQP4 antibody. We observed that AQP4 was constitutively phosphorylated, which is reduced by treatment with protein kinase CK2 inhibitors. To elucidate the phosphorylation of AQP4 by CK2, myc-tagged wild-type or mutant AQP4 was transiently transfected in primary cultured astrocytes. Substitution of Ala residues for four putative CK2 phosphorylation sites in the C terminus abolished the phosphorylation of AQP4. Immunofluorescent microscopy revealed that the quadruple mutant was localized in the Golgi apparatus. These observations indicate that the C-terminal domain of AQP4 is constitutively phosphorylated at least in part by protein kinase CK2 and it is required for Golgi transition.

  3. Glucose Regulates Hypothalamic Long-chain Fatty Acid Metabolism via AMP-activated Kinase (AMPK) in Neurons and Astrocytes*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taïb, Bouchra; Bouyakdan, Khalil; Hryhorczuk, Cécile; Rodaros, Demetra; Fulton, Stephanie; Alquier, Thierry

    2013-01-01

    Hypothalamic controls of energy balance rely on the detection of circulating nutrients such as glucose and long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) by the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH). LCFA metabolism in the MBH plays a key role in the control of food intake and glucose homeostasis, yet it is not known if glucose regulates LCFA oxidation and esterification in the MBH and, if so, which hypothalamic cell type(s) and intracellular signaling mechanisms are involved. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of glucose on LCFA metabolism, assess the role of AMP-activated Kinase (AMPK), and to establish if changes in LCFA metabolism and its regulation by glucose vary as a function of the kind of LCFA, cell type, and brain region. We show that glucose inhibits palmitate oxidation via AMPK in hypothalamic neuronal cell lines, primary hypothalamic astrocyte cultures, and MBH slices ex vivo but not in cortical astrocytes and slice preparations. In contrast, oleate oxidation was not affected by glucose or AMPK inhibition in MBH slices. In addition, our results show that glucose increases palmitate, but not oleate, esterification into neutral lipids in neurons and MBH slices but not in hypothalamic astrocytes. These findings reveal for the first time the metabolic fate of different LCFA in the MBH, demonstrate AMPK-dependent glucose regulation of LCFA oxidation in both astrocytes and neurons, and establish metabolic coupling of glucose and LCFA as a distinguishing feature of hypothalamic nuclei critical for the control of energy balance. PMID:24240094

  4. Glucose regulates hypothalamic long-chain fatty acid metabolism via AMP-activated kinase (AMPK) in neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taïb, Bouchra; Bouyakdan, Khalil; Hryhorczuk, Cécile; Rodaros, Demetra; Fulton, Stephanie; Alquier, Thierry

    2013-12-27

    Hypothalamic controls of energy balance rely on the detection of circulating nutrients such as glucose and long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) by the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH). LCFA metabolism in the MBH plays a key role in the control of food intake and glucose homeostasis, yet it is not known if glucose regulates LCFA oxidation and esterification in the MBH and, if so, which hypothalamic cell type(s) and intracellular signaling mechanisms are involved. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of glucose on LCFA metabolism, assess the role of AMP-activated Kinase (AMPK), and to establish if changes in LCFA metabolism and its regulation by glucose vary as a function of the kind of LCFA, cell type, and brain region. We show that glucose inhibits palmitate oxidation via AMPK in hypothalamic neuronal cell lines, primary hypothalamic astrocyte cultures, and MBH slices ex vivo but not in cortical astrocytes and slice preparations. In contrast, oleate oxidation was not affected by glucose or AMPK inhibition in MBH slices. In addition, our results show that glucose increases palmitate, but not oleate, esterification into neutral lipids in neurons and MBH slices but not in hypothalamic astrocytes. These findings reveal for the first time the metabolic fate of different LCFA in the MBH, demonstrate AMPK-dependent glucose regulation of LCFA oxidation in both astrocytes and neurons, and establish metabolic coupling of glucose and LCFA as a distinguishing feature of hypothalamic nuclei critical for the control of energy balance.

  5. Patterning of functional human astrocytes onto parylene-C/SiO2 substrates for the study of Ca2+ dynamics in astrocytic networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raos, B. J.; Simpson, M. C.; Doyle, C. S.; Murray, A. F.; Graham, E. S.; Unsworth, C. P.

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Recent literature suggests that astrocytes form organized functional networks and communicate through transient changes in cytosolic Ca2+. Traditional techniques to investigate network activity, such as pharmacological blocking or genetic knockout, are difficult to restrict to individual cells. The objective of this work is to develop cell-patterning techniques to physically manipulate astrocytic interactions to enable the study of Ca2+ in astrocytic networks. Approach. We investigate how an in vitro cell-patterning platform that utilizes geometric patterns of parylene-C on SiO2 can be used to physically isolate single astrocytes and small astrocytic networks. Main results. We report that single astrocytes are effectively isolated on 75  ×  75 µm square parylene nodes, whereas multi-cellular astrocytic networks are isolated on larger nodes, with the mean number of astrocytes per cluster increasing as a function of node size. Additionally, we report that astrocytes in small multi-cellular clusters exhibit spatio-temporal clustering of Ca2+ transients. Finally, we report that the frequency and regularity of Ca2+ transients was positively correlated with astrocyte connectivity. Significance. The significance of this work is to demonstrate how patterning hNT astrocytes replicates spatio-temporal clustering of Ca2+ signalling that is observed in vivo but not in dissociated in vitro cultures. We therefore highlight the importance of the structure of astrocytic networks in determining ensemble Ca2+ behaviour.

  6. Electric field-induced astrocyte alignment directs neurite outgrowth

    OpenAIRE

    ALEXANDER, JOHN K.; FUSS, BABETTE; COLELLO, RAYMOND J.

    2006-01-01

    The extension and directionality of neurite outgrowth are key to achieving successful target connections during both CNS development and during the re-establishment of connections lost after neural trauma. The degree of axonal elongation depends, in large part, on the spatial arrangement of astrocytic processes rich in growth-promoting proteins. Because astrocytes in culture align their processes on exposure to an electrical field of physiological strength, we sought to determine the extent t...

  7. Calcium in the Mechanism of Ammonia-Induced Astrocyte Swelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, A.R.; Rao, K.V. Rama; Tong, X.Y; Norenberg, M.D.

    2016-01-01

    Brain edema, due largely to astrocyte swelling, is an important clinical problem in patients with acute liver failure. While mechanisms underlying astrocyte swelling in this condition are not fully understood, ammonia and associated oxidative/nitrosative stress (ONS) appear to be involved. Mechanisms responsible for the increase in reactive oxygen/nitrogen species (RONS) and their role in ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling, however, are poorly understood. Recent studies have demonstrated a transient increase in intracellular Ca2+ in cultured astrocytes exposed to ammonia. As Ca2+ is a known inducer of RONS, we investigated potential mechanisms by which Ca2+ may be responsible for the production of RONS and cell swelling in cultured astrocytes after treatment with ammonia. Exposure of cultured astrocytes to ammonia (5 mM) increased the formation of free radicals, including nitric oxide, and such increase was significantly diminished by treatment with the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA-AM. We then examined the activity of Ca2+-dependent enzymes that are known to generate RONS and found that ammonia significantly increased the activities of NADPH oxidase (NOX), constitutive nitric oxide synthase (cNOS) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) and such increases in activity were significantly diminished by BAPTA. Pretreatment of cultures with 7-nitroindazole, apocyanin and quinacrine, respective inhibitors of cNOS, NOX and PLA2, all significantly diminished RONS production. Additionally, treatment of cultures with BAPTA or with inhibitors of cNOS, NOX and PLA2 reduced ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling. These studies suggest that the ammonia-induced rise in intracellular Ca2+ activates free radical producing enzymes that ultimately contribute to the mechanism of astrocyte swelling. PMID:19393035

  8. Subthalamic nucleus electrical stimulation modulates calcium activity of nigral astrocytes.

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    Elodie Barat

    Full Text Available The substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr is a major output nucleus of the basal ganglia, delivering inhibitory efferents to the relay nuclei of the thalamus. Pathological hyperactivity of SNr neurons is known to be responsible for some motor disorders e.g. in Parkinson's disease. One way to restore this pathological activity is to electrically stimulate one of the SNr input, the excitatory subthalamic nucleus (STN, which has emerged as an effective treatment for parkinsonian patients. The neuronal network and signal processing of the basal ganglia are well known but, paradoxically, the role of astrocytes in the regulation of SNr activity has never been studied.In this work, we developed a rat brain slice model to study the influence of spontaneous and induced excitability of afferent nuclei on SNr astrocytes calcium activity. Astrocytes represent the main cellular population in the SNr and display spontaneous calcium activities in basal conditions. Half of this activity is autonomous (i.e. independent of synaptic activity while the other half is dependent on spontaneous glutamate and GABA release, probably controlled by the pace-maker activity of the pallido-nigral and subthalamo-nigral loops. Modification of the activity of the loops by STN electrical stimulation disrupted this astrocytic calcium excitability through an increase of glutamate and GABA releases. Astrocytic AMPA, mGlu and GABA(A receptors were involved in this effect.Astrocytes are now viewed as active components of neural networks but their role depends on the brain structure concerned. In the SNr, evoked activity prevails and autonomous calcium activity is lower than in the cortex or hippocampus. Our data therefore reflect a specific role of SNr astrocytes in sensing the STN-GPe-SNr loops activity and suggest that SNr astrocytes could potentially feedback on SNr neuronal activity. These findings have major implications given the position of SNr in the basal ganglia network.

  9. Subthalamic nucleus electrical stimulation modulates calcium activity of nigral astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barat, Elodie; Boisseau, Sylvie; Bouyssières, Céline; Appaix, Florence; Savasta, Marc; Albrieux, Mireille

    2012-01-01

    The substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) is a major output nucleus of the basal ganglia, delivering inhibitory efferents to the relay nuclei of the thalamus. Pathological hyperactivity of SNr neurons is known to be responsible for some motor disorders e.g. in Parkinson's disease. One way to restore this pathological activity is to electrically stimulate one of the SNr input, the excitatory subthalamic nucleus (STN), which has emerged as an effective treatment for parkinsonian patients. The neuronal network and signal processing of the basal ganglia are well known but, paradoxically, the role of astrocytes in the regulation of SNr activity has never been studied. In this work, we developed a rat brain slice model to study the influence of spontaneous and induced excitability of afferent nuclei on SNr astrocytes calcium activity. Astrocytes represent the main cellular population in the SNr and display spontaneous calcium activities in basal conditions. Half of this activity is autonomous (i.e. independent of synaptic activity) while the other half is dependent on spontaneous glutamate and GABA release, probably controlled by the pace-maker activity of the pallido-nigral and subthalamo-nigral loops. Modification of the activity of the loops by STN electrical stimulation disrupted this astrocytic calcium excitability through an increase of glutamate and GABA releases. Astrocytic AMPA, mGlu and GABA(A) receptors were involved in this effect. Astrocytes are now viewed as active components of neural networks but their role depends on the brain structure concerned. In the SNr, evoked activity prevails and autonomous calcium activity is lower than in the cortex or hippocampus. Our data therefore reflect a specific role of SNr astrocytes in sensing the STN-GPe-SNr loops activity and suggest that SNr astrocytes could potentially feedback on SNr neuronal activity. These findings have major implications given the position of SNr in the basal ganglia network.

  10. Genome-Scale Reconstruction of the Human Astrocyte Metabolic Network

    OpenAIRE

    Mart?n-Jim?nez, Cynthia A.; Salazar-Barreto, Diego; Barreto, George E.; Gonz?lez, Janneth

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cells of the central nervous system; they have a predominant role in maintaining brain metabolism. In this sense, abnormal metabolic states have been found in different neuropathological diseases. Determination of metabolic states of astrocytes is difficult to model using current experimental approaches given the high number of reactions and metabolites present. Thus, genome-scale metabolic networks derived from transcriptomic data can be used as a framework t...

  11. Sensory Processing Subtypes in Autism: Association with Adaptive Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, Alison E.; Young, Robyn L.; Baker, Amy E. Z.; Angley, Manya T.

    2010-01-01

    Children with autism are frequently observed to experience difficulties in sensory processing. This study examined specific patterns of sensory processing in 54 children with autistic disorder and their association with adaptive behavior. Model-based cluster analysis revealed three distinct sensory processing subtypes in autism. These subtypes…

  12. Astrocytic Insulin Signaling Couples Brain Glucose Uptake with Nutrient Availability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Cáceres, Cristina; Quarta, Carmelo; Varela, Luis; Gao, Yuanqing; Gruber, Tim; Legutko, Beata; Jastroch, Martin; Johansson, Pia; Ninkovic, Jovica; Yi, Chun-Xia; Le Thuc, Ophelia; Szigeti-Buck, Klara; Cai, Weikang; Meyer, Carola W; Pfluger, Paul T; Fernandez, Ana M; Luquet, Serge; Woods, Stephen C; Torres-Alemán, Ignacio; Kahn, C Ronald; Götz, Magdalena; Horvath, Tamas L; Tschöp, Matthias H

    2016-08-11

    We report that astrocytic insulin signaling co-regulates hypothalamic glucose sensing and systemic glucose metabolism. Postnatal ablation of insulin receptors (IRs) in glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-expressing cells affects hypothalamic astrocyte morphology, mitochondrial function, and circuit connectivity. Accordingly, astrocytic IR ablation reduces glucose-induced activation of hypothalamic pro-opio-melanocortin (POMC) neurons and impairs physiological responses to changes in glucose availability. Hypothalamus-specific knockout of astrocytic IRs, as well as postnatal ablation by targeting glutamate aspartate transporter (GLAST)-expressing cells, replicates such alterations. A normal response to altering directly CNS glucose levels in mice lacking astrocytic IRs indicates a role in glucose transport across the blood-brain barrier (BBB). This was confirmed in vivo in GFAP-IR KO mice by using positron emission tomography and glucose monitoring in cerebral spinal fluid. We conclude that insulin signaling in hypothalamic astrocytes co-controls CNS glucose sensing and systemic glucose metabolism via regulation of glucose uptake across the BBB. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Targeting of astrocytic glucose metabolism by beta-hydroxybutyrate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdebenito, Rocío; Ruminot, Iván; Garrido-Gerter, Pamela; Fernández-Moncada, Ignacio; Forero-Quintero, Linda; Alegría, Karin; Becker, Holger M; Deitmer, Joachim W; Barros, L Felipe

    2016-10-01

    The effectiveness of ketogenic diets and intermittent fasting against neurological disorders has brought interest to the effects of ketone bodies on brain cells. These compounds are known to modify the metabolism of neurons, but little is known about their effect on astrocytes, cells that control the supply of glucose to neurons and also modulate neuronal excitability through the glycolytic production of lactate. Here we have used genetically-encoded Förster Resonance Energy Transfer nanosensors for glucose, pyruvate and ATP to characterize astrocytic energy metabolism at cellular resolution. Our results show that the ketone body beta-hydroxybutyrate strongly inhibited astrocytic glucose consumption in mouse astrocytes in mixed cultures, in organotypic hippocampal slices and in acute hippocampal slices prepared from ketotic mice, while blunting the stimulation of glycolysis by physiological and pathophysiological stimuli. The inhibition of glycolysis was paralleled by an increased ability of astrocytic mitochondria to metabolize pyruvate. These results support the emerging notion that astrocytes contribute to the neuroprotective effect of ketone bodies. © The Author(s) 2015.

  14. Astrocytes regulate heterogeneity of presynaptic strengths in hippocampal networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letellier, Mathieu; Park, Yun Kyung; Chater, Thomas E.; Chipman, Peter H.; Gautam, Sunita Ghimire; Oshima-Takago, Tomoko; Goda, Yukiko

    2016-01-01

    Dendrites are neuronal structures specialized for receiving and processing information through their many synaptic inputs. How input strengths are modified across dendrites in ways that are crucial for synaptic integration and plasticity remains unclear. We examined in single hippocampal neurons the mechanism of heterosynaptic interactions and the heterogeneity of synaptic strengths of pyramidal cell inputs. Heterosynaptic presynaptic plasticity that counterbalances input strengths requires N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) and astrocytes. Importantly, this mechanism is shared with the mechanism for maintaining highly heterogeneous basal presynaptic strengths, which requires astrocyte Ca2+ signaling involving NMDAR activation, astrocyte membrane depolarization, and L-type Ca2+ channels. Intracellular infusion of NMDARs or Ca2+-channel blockers into astrocytes, conditionally ablating the GluN1 NMDAR subunit, or optogenetically hyperpolarizing astrocytes with archaerhodopsin promotes homogenization of convergent presynaptic inputs. Our findings support the presence of an astrocyte-dependent cellular mechanism that enhances the heterogeneity of presynaptic strengths of convergent connections, which may help boost the computational power of dendrites. PMID:27118849

  15. Preferential lentiviral targeting of astrocytes in the central nervous system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Fassler

    Full Text Available The ability to visualize and genetically manipulate specific cell populations of the central nervous system (CNS is fundamental to a better understanding of brain functions at the cellular and molecular levels. Tools to selectively target cells of the CNS include molecular genetics, imaging, and use of transgenic animals. However, these approaches are technically challenging, time consuming, and difficult to control. Viral-mediated targeting of cells in the CNS can be highly beneficial for studying and treating neurodegenerative diseases. Yet, despite specific marking of numerous cell types in the CNS, in vivo selective targeting of astrocytes has not been optimized. In this study, preferential targeting of astrocytes in the CNS was demonstrated using engineered lentiviruses that were pseudotyped with a modified Sindbis envelope and displayed anti-GLAST IgG on their surfaces as an attachment moiety. Viral tropism for astrocytes was initially verified in vitro in primary mixed glia cultures. When injected into the brains of mice, lentiviruses that displayed GLAST IgG on their surface, exhibited preferential astrocyte targeting, compared to pseudotyped lentiviruses that did not incorporate any IgG or that expressed a control isotype IgG. Overall, this approach is highly flexible and can be exploited to selectively target astrocytes or other cell types of the CNS. As such, it can open a window to visualize and genetically manipulate astrocytes or other cells of the CNS as means of research and treatment.

  16. Metabolic aspects of Neuronal – Oligodendrocytic - Astrocytic (NOA interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana I Amaral

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Whereas astrocytes have been in the limelight on the metabolic glucose interaction scene for a while, oligodendrocytes are still waiting for a place. We would like to call oligodendrocyte interaction with astrocytes and neurons: NOA (neuron – oligodendrocyte – astrocyte interactions. One of the reasons to find out more about oligodendrocyte interaction with neurons and astrocytes is to detect markers of healthy oligodendrocyte metabolism, to be used in diagnosis and treatment assessment in diseases such as Perinatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and multiple sclerosis in which oligodendrocyte function is impaired, possibly due to glutamate toxicity. Glutamate receptors are expressed in oligodendrocytes and also vesicular glutamate release in the white matter has received considerable attention. It is also important to establish if the glial precursor cells recruited to damaged areas are developing oligodendrocyte characteristics or those of astrocytes. Thus, it is important to study astrocytes and oligodendrocytes separately to be able to differentiate between them. This is of particular importance in the white matter where the number of oligodendrocytes is considerable. The present review summarizes the not very extensive information published on glucose metabolism in oligodendrocytes in an attempt to stimulate research into this important field.

  17. An Efficient Platform for Astrocyte Differentiation from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia TCW

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Growing evidence implicates the importance of glia, particularly astrocytes, in neurological and psychiatric diseases. Here, we describe a rapid and robust method for the differentiation of highly pure populations of replicative astrocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs, via a neural progenitor cell (NPC intermediate. We evaluated this protocol across 42 NPC lines (derived from 30 individuals. Transcriptomic analysis demonstrated that hiPSC-astrocytes from four individuals are highly similar to primary human fetal astrocytes and characteristic of a non-reactive state. hiPSC-astrocytes respond to inflammatory stimulants, display phagocytic capacity, and enhance microglial phagocytosis. hiPSC-astrocytes also possess spontaneous calcium transient activity. Our protocol is a reproducible, straightforward (single medium, and rapid (<30 days method to generate populations of hiPSC-astrocytes that can be used for neuron-astrocyte and microglia-astrocyte co-cultures for the study of neuropsychiatric disorders.

  18. Motor subtype changes in early Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisinger, Robert S; Hess, Christopher W; Martinez-Ramirez, Daniel; Almeida, Leonardo; Foote, Kelly D; Okun, Michael S; Gunduz, Aysegul

    2017-10-01

    Distinct motor subtypes of Parkinson's disease (PD) have been described through both clinical observation and through data-driven approaches. However, the extent to which motor subtypes change during disease progression remains unknown. Our objective was to determine motor subtypes of PD using an unsupervised clustering methodology and evaluate subtype changes with disease duration. The Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative database of 423 newly diagnosed PD patients was utilized to retrospectively identify unique motor subtypes through a data-driven, hierarchical correlational clustering approach. For each patient, we assigned a subtype to each motor assessment at each follow-up visit (time points) and by using published criteria. We examined changes in PD subtype with disease duration using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Five distinct motor subtypes were identified based on the motor assessment items and these included: Tremor Dominant (TD), Axial Dominant, Appendicular Dominant, Rigidity Dominant, and Postural and Instability Gait Disorder Dominant. About half of the patients had consistent subtypes at all time points. Most patients met criteria for TD subtype soon after diagnosis. For patients with inconsistent subtypes, there was an overall trend to shift away from a TD phenotype with disease duration, as shown by chi-squared test, p motor subtypes in PD can shift with increasing disease duration. Shifting subtypes is a factor that should be accounted for in clinical practice or in clinical trials. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. The whole-genome landscape of medulloblastoma subtypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Northcott, Paul A.; Buchhalter, Ivo; Morrissy, A. Sorana

    2017-01-01

    actionable targets. Driver mutations were confidently assigned to most patients belonging to Group 3 and Group 4 medulloblastoma subgroups, greatly enhancing previous knowledge. New molecular subtypes were differentially enriched for specific driver events, including hotspot in-frame insertions that target...... KBTBD4 and 'enhancer hijacking' events that activate PRDM6. Thus, the application of integrative genomics to an extensive cohort of clinical samples derived from a single childhood cancer entity revealed a series of cancer genes and biologically relevant subtype diversity that represent attractive...

  20. Aerobic glycolysis during brain activation: adrenergic regulation and influence of norepinephrine on astrocytic metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F

    2016-07-01

    Aerobic glycolysis occurs during brain activation and is characterized by preferential up-regulation of glucose utilization compared with oxygen consumption even though oxygen level and delivery are adequate. Aerobic glycolysis is a widespread phenomenon that underlies energetics of diverse brain activities, such as alerting, sensory processing, cognition, memory, and pathophysiological conditions, but specific cellular functions fulfilled by aerobic glycolysis are poorly understood. Evaluation of evidence derived from different disciplines reveals that aerobic glycolysis is a complex, regulated phenomenon that is prevented by propranolol, a non-specific β-adrenoceptor antagonist. The metabolic pathways that contribute to excess utilization of glucose compared with oxygen include glycolysis, the pentose phosphate shunt pathway, the malate-aspartate shuttle, and astrocytic glycogen turnover. Increased lactate production by unidentified cells, and lactate dispersal from activated cells and lactate release from the brain, both facilitated by astrocytes, are major factors underlying aerobic glycolysis in subjects with low blood lactate levels. Astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttling with local oxidation is minor. Blockade of aerobic glycolysis by propranolol implicates adrenergic regulatory processes including adrenal release of epinephrine, signaling to brain via the vagus nerve, and increased norepinephrine release from the locus coeruleus. Norepinephrine has a powerful influence on astrocytic metabolism and glycogen turnover that can stimulate carbohydrate utilization more than oxygen consumption, whereas β-receptor blockade 're-balances' the stoichiometry of oxygen-glucose or -carbohydrate metabolism by suppressing glucose and glycogen utilization more than oxygen consumption. This conceptual framework may be helpful for design of future studies to elucidate functional roles of preferential non-oxidative glucose utilization and glycogen turnover during brain

  1. Fixation Characteristics of Severe Amblyopia Subtypes: Which One is Worse?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koylu, Mehmet Talay; Ozge, Gokhan; Kucukevcilioglu, Murat; Mutlu, Fatih Mehmet; Ceylan, Osman Melih; Akıncıoglu, Dorukcan; Ayyıldız, Onder

    2017-01-01

    To determine differences in macular sensitivity and fixation patterns in different subtypes of severe amblyopia. This case-control study enrolled a total of 73 male adults, including 18 with pure strabismic severe amblyopia, 19 with pure anisometropic severe amblyopia, 18 with mixed (strabismic plus anizometropic) severe amblyopia, and 18 healthy controls. MP-1 microperimetry was used to evaluate macular sensitivity, location of fixation, and stability of fixation. Mean macular sensitivity, stability of fixation, and location of fixation were significantly worse in all amblyopia subtypes when compared with healthy controls. Intergroup comparisons between amblyopia subtypes revealed that mean macular sensitivity, stability of fixation, and location of fixation were significantly worse in pure strabismic and mixed amblyopic eyes when compared with pure anisometropic amblyopic eyes. Strabismus seems to be a worse prognostic factor in severe amblyopia than anisometropia in terms of fixation characteristics and retinal sensitivity.

  2. Electrodiffusive model for astrocytic and neuronal ion concentration dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geir Halnes

    Full Text Available The cable equation is a proper framework for modeling electrical neural signalling that takes place at a timescale at which the ionic concentrations vary little. However, in neural tissue there are also key dynamic processes that occur at longer timescales. For example, endured periods of intense neural signaling may cause the local extracellular K(+-concentration to increase by several millimolars. The clearance of this excess K(+ depends partly on diffusion in the extracellular space, partly on local uptake by astrocytes, and partly on intracellular transport (spatial buffering within astrocytes. These processes, that take place at the time scale of seconds, demand a mathematical description able to account for the spatiotemporal variations in ion concentrations as well as the subsequent effects of these variations on the membrane potential. Here, we present a general electrodiffusive formalism for modeling of ion concentration dynamics in a one-dimensional geometry, including both the intra- and extracellular domains. Based on the Nernst-Planck equations, this formalism ensures that the membrane potential and ion concentrations are in consistency, it ensures global particle/charge conservation and it accounts for diffusion and concentration dependent variations in resistivity. We apply the formalism to a model of astrocytes exchanging ions with the extracellular space. The simulations show that K(+-removal from high-concentration regions is driven by a local depolarization of the astrocyte membrane, which concertedly (i increases the local astrocytic uptake of K(+, (ii suppresses extracellular transport of K(+, (iii increases axial transport of K(+ within astrocytes, and (iv facilitates astrocytic relase of K(+ in regions where the extracellular concentration is low. Together, these mechanisms seem to provide a robust regulatory scheme for shielding the extracellular space from excess K(+.

  3. Hippocampal Astrocytes in Migrating and Wintering Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho-Paulo, Dario; de Morais Magalhães, Nara G; de Almeida Miranda, Diego; Diniz, Daniel G; Henrique, Ediely P; Moraes, Isis A M; Pereira, Patrick D C; de Melo, Mauro A D; de Lima, Camila M; de Oliveira, Marcus A; Guerreiro-Diniz, Cristovam; Sherry, David F; Diniz, Cristovam W P

    2017-01-01

    Seasonal migratory birds return to the same breeding and wintering grounds year after year, and migratory long-distance shorebirds are good examples of this. These tasks require learning and long-term spatial memory abilities that are integrated into a navigational system for repeatedly locating breeding, wintering, and stopover sites. Previous investigations focused on the neurobiological basis of hippocampal plasticity and numerical estimates of hippocampal neurogenesis in birds but only a few studies investigated potential contributions of glial cells to hippocampal-dependent tasks related to migration. Here we hypothesized that the astrocytes of migrating and wintering birds may exhibit significant morphological and numerical differences connected to the long-distance flight. We used as a model the semipalmated sandpiper Calidris pusilla , that migrates from northern Canada and Alaska to South America. Before the transatlantic non-stop long-distance component of their flight, the birds make a stopover at the Bay of Fundy in Canada. To test our hypothesis, we estimated total numbers and compared the three-dimensional (3-D) morphological features of adult C. pusilla astrocytes captured in the Bay of Fundy ( n = 249 cells) with those from birds captured in the coastal region of Bragança, Brazil, during the wintering period ( n = 250 cells). Optical fractionator was used to estimate the number of astrocytes and for 3-D reconstructions we used hierarchical cluster analysis. Both morphological phenotypes showed reduced morphological complexity after the long-distance non-stop flight, but the reduction in complexity was much greater in Type I than in Type II astrocytes. Coherently, we also found a significant reduction in the total number of astrocytes after the transatlantic flight. Taken together these findings suggest that the long-distance non-stop flight altered significantly the astrocytes population and that morphologically distinct astrocytes may play

  4. Hippocampal Astrocytes in Migrating and Wintering Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dario Carvalho-Paulo

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Seasonal migratory birds return to the same breeding and wintering grounds year after year, and migratory long-distance shorebirds are good examples of this. These tasks require learning and long-term spatial memory abilities that are integrated into a navigational system for repeatedly locating breeding, wintering, and stopover sites. Previous investigations focused on the neurobiological basis of hippocampal plasticity and numerical estimates of hippocampal neurogenesis in birds but only a few studies investigated potential contributions of glial cells to hippocampal-dependent tasks related to migration. Here we hypothesized that the astrocytes of migrating and wintering birds may exhibit significant morphological and numerical differences connected to the long-distance flight. We used as a model the semipalmated sandpiper Calidris pusilla, that migrates from northern Canada and Alaska to South America. Before the transatlantic non-stop long-distance component of their flight, the birds make a stopover at the Bay of Fundy in Canada. To test our hypothesis, we estimated total numbers and compared the three-dimensional (3-D morphological features of adult C. pusilla astrocytes captured in the Bay of Fundy (n = 249 cells with those from birds captured in the coastal region of Bragança, Brazil, during the wintering period (n = 250 cells. Optical fractionator was used to estimate the number of astrocytes and for 3-D reconstructions we used hierarchical cluster analysis. Both morphological phenotypes showed reduced morphological complexity after the long-distance non-stop flight, but the reduction in complexity was much greater in Type I than in Type II astrocytes. Coherently, we also found a significant reduction in the total number of astrocytes after the transatlantic flight. Taken together these findings suggest that the long-distance non-stop flight altered significantly the astrocytes population and that morphologically distinct astrocytes

  5. Effects of aspartame metabolites on astrocytes and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rycerz, Karol; Jaworska-Adamu, Jadwiga Elżbieta

    2013-01-01

    Aspartame, a widespread sweetener used in many food products, is considered as a highly hazardous compound. Aspartame was discovered in 1965 and raises a lot of controversy up to date. Astrocytes are glial cells, the presence and functions of which are closely connected with the central nervous system (CNS). The aim of this article is to demonstrate the direct and indirect role of astrocytes participating in the harmful effects of aspartame metabolites on neurons. The artificial sweetener is broken down into phenylalanine (50%), aspartic acid (40%) and methanol (10%) during metabolism in the body. The excess of phenylalanine blocks the transport of important amino acids to the brain contributing to reduced levels of dopamine and serotonin. Astrocytes directly affect the transport of this amino acid and also indirectly by modulation of carriers in the endothelium. Aspartic acid at high concentrations is a toxin that causes hyperexcitability of neurons and is also a precursor of other excitatory amino acid - glutamates. Their excess in quantity and lack of astrocytic uptake induces excitotoxicity and leads to the degeneration of astrocytes and neurons. The methanol metabolites cause CNS depression, vision disorders and other symptoms leading ultimately to metabolic acidosis and coma. Astrocytes do not play a significant role in methanol poisoning due to a permanent consumption of large amounts of aspartame. Despite intense speculations about the carcinogenicity of aspartame, the latest studies show that its metabolite - diketopiperazine - is cancirogenic in the CNS. It contributes to the formation of tumors in the CNS such as gliomas, medulloblastomas and meningiomas. Glial cells are the main source of tumors, which can be caused inter alia by the sweetener in the brain. On the one hand the action of astrocytes during aspartame poisoning may be advantageous for neuro-protection while on the other it may intensify the destruction of neurons. The role of the glia in

  6. Astrocytes as a source for Extracellular matrix molecules and cytokines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefan eWiese

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Research of the past 25 years has shown that astrocytes do more than participating and building up the blood brain barrier and detoxify the active synapse by reuptake of neurotransmitters and ions. Indeed, astrocytes express neurotransmitter receptors and, as a consequence, respond to stimuli. Deeper knowledge of the differentiation processes during development of the central nervous system (CNS might help explaining and even help treating neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS and psychiatric disorders in which astrocytes have been shown to play a role. Astrocytes and oligodendrocytes develop from a multipotent stem cell that prior to this has produced primarily neuronal precursor cells. This switch towards the more astroglial differentiation is regulated by a change in receptor composition on the cell surface and responsiveness of the respective trophic factors Fibroblast growth factor (FGF and Epidermal growth factor (EGF. The glial precursor cell is driven into the astroglial direction by signaling molecules like Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF, Bone Morphogenetic Proteins (BMPs, and EGF. However, the early astrocytes influence their environment not only by releasing and responding to diverse soluble factors but also express a wide range of extracellular matrix (ECM molecules, in particular proteoglycans of the lectican family and tenascins. Lately these ECM molecules have been shown to participate in glial development. In this regard, especially the matrix protein Tenascin C (Tnc proved to be an important regulator of astrocyte precursor cell proliferation and migration during spinal cord development. On the other hand, ECM molecules expressed by reactive astrocytes are also known to act mostly in an inhibitory fashion under pathophysiological conditions. In this regard, we further summarize recent data concerning the role of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans and Tnc under pathological

  7. Hyperglycaemia and diabetes impair gap junctional communication among astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandhi, Gautam K; Ball, Kelly K; Cruz, Nancy F; Dienel, Gerald A

    2010-03-15

    Sensory and cognitive impairments have been documented in diabetic humans and animals, but the pathophysiology of diabetes in the central nervous system is poorly understood. Because a high glucose level disrupts gap junctional communication in various cell types and astrocytes are extensively coupled by gap junctions to form large syncytia, the influence of experimental diabetes on gap junction channel-mediated dye transfer was assessed in astrocytes in tissue culture and in brain slices from diabetic rats. Astrocytes grown in 15-25 mmol/l glucose had a slow-onset, poorly reversible decrement in gap junctional communication compared with those grown in 5.5 mmol/l glucose. Astrocytes in brain slices from adult STZ (streptozotocin)-treated rats at 20-24 weeks after the onset of diabetes also exhibited reduced dye transfer. In cultured astrocytes grown in high glucose, increased oxidative stress preceded the decrement in dye transfer by several days, and gap junctional impairment was prevented, but not rescued, after its manifestation by compounds that can block or reduce oxidative stress. In sharp contrast with these findings, chaperone molecules known to facilitate protein folding could prevent and rescue gap junctional impairment, even in the presence of elevated glucose level and oxidative stress. Immunostaining of Cx (connexin) 43 and 30, but not Cx26, was altered by growth in high glucose. Disruption of astrocytic trafficking of metabolites and signalling molecules may alter interactions among astrocytes, neurons and endothelial cells and contribute to changes in brain function in diabetes. Involvement of the microvasculature may contribute to diabetic complications in the brain, the cardiovascular system and other organs.

  8. Classification of alpha 1-adrenoceptor subtypes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Michel, M. C.; Kenny, B.; Schwinn, D. A.

    1995-01-01

    Two alpha 1-adrenoceptor subtypes (alpha 1A and alpha 1B) have been detected in various tissues by pharmacological techniques, and three distinct cDNAs encoding alpha 1-adrenoceptor subtypes have been cloned. The profile of an increasing number of subtype-selective compounds at cloned and endogenous

  9. Subtypes of nonmedical prescription drug misuse

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCabe, Sean Esteban; Boyd, Carol J.; Teter, Christian J.

    2010-01-01

    This study used three characteristics (i.e., motive, route of administration, and co-ingestion with alcohol) of nonmedical prescription drug misuse across four separate classes (i.e., pain, sedative/anxiety, sleeping and stimulant medications) to examine subtypes and drug related problems. A Web survey was self-administered by a randomly selected sample of 3,639 undergraduate students attending a large Midwestern 4-year U.S. university. Self-treatment subtypes were characterized by motives consistent with the prescription drug's pharmaceutical main indication, oral only routes of administration, and no co-ingestion with alcohol. Recreational subtypes were characterized by recreational motives, oral or non-oral routes, and co-ingestion. Mixed subtypes consisted of other combinations of motives, routes, and co-ingestion. Among those who reported nonmedical prescription drug misuse, approximately 13% were classified into the recreational subtype, while 39% were in the self-treatment subtype, and 48% were in the mixed subtype. There were significant differences in the subtypes in terms of gender, race and prescription drug class. Approximately 50% of those in subtypes other than self-treatment screened positive for drug abuse. The odds of substance use and abuse were generally lower among self-treatment subtypes than other subtypes. The findings indicate subtypes should be considered when examining nonmedical prescription drug misuse, especially for pain medication. PMID:19278795

  10. Fatty acid oxidation and ketogenesis in astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Auestad, N.

    1988-01-01

    Astrocytes were derived from cortex of two-day-old rat brain and grown in primary culture to confluence. The metabolism of the fatty acids, octanoate and palmitate, to CO 2 in oxidative respiration and to the formation of ketone bodies was examined by radiolabeled tracer methodology. The net production of acetoacetate was also determined by measurement of its mass. The enzymes in the ketogenic pathway were examined by measuring enzymic activity and/or by immunoblot analyses. Labeled CO 2 and labeled ketone bodies were produced from the oxidation of fatty acids labeled at carboxy- and ω-terminal carbons, indicating that fatty acids were oxidized by β-oxidation. The results from the radiolabeled tracer studies also indicated that a substantial proportion of the ω-terminal 4-carbon unit of the fatty acids bypassed the β-ketothiolase step of the β-oxidation pathway. The [ 14 C]acetoacetate formed from the [1- 14 C]labeled fatty acids, obligated to pass through the acetyl-CoA pool, contained 50% of the label at carbon 3 and 50% at carbon 1. In contrast, the [ 14 C]acetoacetate formed from the (ω-1)labeled fatty acids contained 90% of the label at carbon 3 and 10% at carbon 1

  11. Ascl1 controls the number and distribution of astrocytes and oligodendrocytes in the gray matter and white matter of the spinal cord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vue, Tou Yia; Kim, Euiseok J.; Parras, Carlos M.; Guillemot, Francois; Johnson, Jane E.

    2014-01-01

    Glia constitute the majority of cells in the mammalian central nervous system and are crucial for neurological function. However, there is an incomplete understanding of the molecular control of glial cell development. We find that the transcription factor Ascl1 (Mash1), which is best known for its role in neurogenesis, also functions in both astrocyte and oligodendrocyte lineages arising in the mouse spinal cord at late embryonic stages. Clonal fate mapping in vivo reveals heterogeneity in Ascl1-expressing glial progenitors and shows that Ascl1 defines cells that are restricted to either gray matter (GM) or white matter (WM) as astrocytes or oligodendrocytes. Conditional deletion of Ascl1 post-neurogenesis shows that Ascl1 is required during oligodendrogenesis for generating the correct numbers of WM but not GM oligodendrocyte precursor cells, whereas during astrocytogenesis Ascl1 functions in balancing the number of dorsal GM protoplasmic astrocytes with dorsal WM fibrous astrocytes. Thus, in addition to its function in neurogenesis, Ascl1 marks glial progenitors and controls the number and distribution of astrocytes and oligodendrocytes in the GM and WM of the spinal cord. PMID:25249462

  12. Green-fluorescent protein+ Astrocytes Attach to beta-Amyloid Plaques in an Alzheimer Mouse Model and GFPare Sensitive for Clasmatodendrosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian eHumpel

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is pathologically characterized by beta-amyloid (Aβ plaques and Tau pathology. It is well-established that Aβ plaques are surrounded by reactive astrocytes, highly expressing glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP. In order to study the cellular interaction of reactive astrocytes with Aβ plaques, we crossbred mice overexpressing amyloid precursor protein (APP with the Swedish-Dutch-Iowa mutations (APP-SweDI with mice expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP under the GFAP-promotor. Three-dimensional confocal microscopy revealed a tight association and intense sprouting of astrocytic fine branched processes towards Aβ plaques in 12 month old mice. In order to study phagocytosis, 110 µm thick brain slices from 12 month old crossbred mice were cultured overnight, however, we found that the GFP fluorescence faded away, distal processes degenerated and a complete loss of astrocytic morphology was seen (clasmatodendrosis. In summary, our data show that GFP+ reactive astrocytes make intense contact with Aβ plaques but these cells are highly vulnerable for degeneration.

  13. Complete genome of a European hepatitis C virus subtype 1g isolate: phylogenetic and genetic analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracho, Maria A; Saludes, Verónica; Martró, Elisa; Bargalló, Ana; González-Candelas, Fernando; Ausina, Vicent

    2008-06-05

    Hepatitis C virus isolates have been classified into six main genotypes and a variable number of subtypes within each genotype, mainly based on phylogenetic analysis. Analyses of the genetic relationship among genotypes and subtypes are more reliable when complete genome sequences (or at least the full coding region) are used; however, so far 31 of 80 confirmed or proposed subtypes have at least one complete genome available. Of these, 20 correspond to confirmed subtypes of epidemic interest. We present and analyse the first complete genome sequence of a HCV subtype 1g isolate. Phylogenetic and genetic distance analyses reveal that HCV-1g is the most divergent subtype among the HCV-1 confirmed subtypes. Potential genomic recombination events between genotypes or subtype 1 genomes were ruled out. We demonstrate phylogenetic congruence of previously deposited partial sequences of HCV-1g with respect to our sequence. In light of this, we propose changing the current status of its subtype-specific designation from provisional to confirmed.

  14. Complete genome of a European hepatitis C virus subtype 1g isolate: phylogenetic and genetic analyses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bargalló Ana

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hepatitis C virus isolates have been classified into six main genotypes and a variable number of subtypes within each genotype, mainly based on phylogenetic analysis. Analyses of the genetic relationship among genotypes and subtypes are more reliable when complete genome sequences (or at least the full coding region are used; however, so far 31 of 80 confirmed or proposed subtypes have at least one complete genome available. Of these, 20 correspond to confirmed subtypes of epidemic interest. Results We present and analyse the first complete genome sequence of a HCV subtype 1g isolate. Phylogenetic and genetic distance analyses reveal that HCV-1g is the most divergent subtype among the HCV-1 confirmed subtypes. Potential genomic recombination events between genotypes or subtype 1 genomes were ruled out. We demonstrate phylogenetic congruence of previously deposited partial sequences of HCV-1g with respect to our sequence. Conclusion In light of this, we propose changing the current status of its subtype-specific designation from provisional to confirmed.

  15. Palmitoylethanolamide Blunts Amyloid-β42-Induced Astrocyte Activation and Improves Neuronal Survival in Primary Mouse Cortical Astrocyte-Neuron Co-Cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beggiato, Sarah; Borelli, Andrea Celeste; Ferraro, Luca; Tanganelli, Sergio; Antonelli, Tiziana; Tomasini, Maria Cristina

    2018-01-01

    Based on the pivotal role of astrocytes in brain homeostasis and the strong metabolic cooperation existing between neurons and astrocytes, it has been suggested that astrocytic dysfunctions might cause and/or contribute to neuroinflammation and neurodegenerative processes. Therapeutic approaches aimed at both neuroprotection and neuroinflammation reduction may prove particularly effective in slowing the progression of these diseases. The endogenous lipid mediator palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) displayed neuroprotective and anti(neuro)inflammatory properties, and demonstrated interesting potential as a novel treatment for Alzheimer's disease. We firstly evaluated whether astrocytes could participate in regulating the Aβ42-induced neuronal damage, by using primary mouse astrocytes cell cultures and mixed astrocytes-neurons cultures. Furthermore, the possible protective effects of PEA against Aβ42-induced neuronal toxicity have also been investigated by evaluating neuronal viability, apoptosis, and morphometric parameters. The presence of astrocytes pre-exposed to Aβ42 (0.5μM; 24 h) induced a reduction of neuronal viability in primary mouse astrocytes-neurons co-cultures. Furthermore, under these experimental conditions, an increase in the number of neuronal apoptotic nuclei and a decrease in the number of MAP-2 positive neurons were observed. Finally, astrocytic Aβ42 pre-exposure induced an increase in the number of neurite aggregations/100μm as compared to control (i.e., untreated) astrocytes-neurons co-cultures. These effects were not observed in neurons cultured in the presence of astrocytes pre-exposed to PEA (0.1μM), applied 1 h before and maintained during Aβ42 treatment. Astrocytes contribute to Aβ42-induced neurotoxicity and PEA, by blunting Aβ42-induced astrocyte activation, improved neuronal survival in mouse astrocyte-neuron co-cultures.

  16. Evidence of multiple introductions of HIV-1 subtype C in Angola.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afonso, Joana Morais; Morgado, Mariza G; Bello, Gonzalo

    2012-10-01

    HIV-1 subtype C is the most prevalent group M clade in southern Africa and some eastern African countries. Subtype C is also the most frequent subtype in Angola (southwestern Africa), with an estimated prevalence of 10-20%. In order to better understand the origin of the HIV-1 subtype C strains circulating in Angola, 31 subtype C pol sequences of Angolan origin were compared with 1950 subtype C pol sequences sampled in other African countries. Phylogenetic analyses reveal that the Angolan subtype C sequences were distributed in 16 different lineages that were widely dispersed among other African strains. Ten subtype C Angolan lineages were composed by only one sequence, while the remaining six clades contain between two and seven sequences. Bayesian phylogeographic analysis indicates that most Angolan clades probably originated in different southern African countries with the exception of one lineage that most likely originated in Burundi. Evolutionary analysis suggests that those Angolan subtype C clades composed by ≥ 2 sequences were introduced into the country between the late 1970s and the mid 2000s. The median estimated time frame for the origin of those Angolan lineages coincides with periods of positive migration influx in Angola that were preceded by phases of negative migratory outflow. These results demonstrate that the Angolan subtype C epidemic resulted from multiple introductions of subtype C viruses mainly imported from southern African countries over the last 30years, some of which have been locally disseminated establishing several autochthonous transmission networks. This study also suggests that population mobility between Angola and southern African countries during civil war (1974-2002) may have played a key role in the emergence of the Angolan subtype C epidemic. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Medium-chain fatty acids inhibit mitochondrial metabolism in astrocytes promoting astrocyte-neuron lactate and ketone body shuttle systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thevenet, Jonathan; De Marchi, Umberto; Domingo, Jaime Santo; Christinat, Nicolas; Bultot, Laurent; Lefebvre, Gregory; Sakamoto, Kei; Descombes, Patrick; Masoodi, Mojgan; Wiederkehr, Andreas

    2016-05-01

    Medium-chain triglycerides have been used as part of a ketogenic diet effective in reducing epileptic episodes. The health benefits of the derived medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) are thought to result from the stimulation of liver ketogenesis providing fuel for the brain. We tested whether MCFAs have direct effects on energy metabolism in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived human astrocytes and neurons. Using single-cell imaging, we observed an acute pronounced reduction of the mitochondrial electrical potential and a concomitant drop of the NAD(P)H signal in astrocytes, but not in neurons. Despite the observed effects on mitochondrial function, MCFAs did not lower intracellular ATP levels or activate the energy sensor AMP-activated protein kinase. ATP concentrations in astrocytes were unaltered, even when blocking the respiratory chain, suggesting compensation through accelerated glycolysis. The MCFA decanoic acid (300 μM) promoted glycolysis and augmented lactate formation by 49.6%. The shorter fatty acid octanoic acid (300 μM) did not affect glycolysis but increased the rates of astrocyte ketogenesis 2.17-fold compared with that of control cells. MCFAs may have brain health benefits through the modulation of astrocyte metabolism leading to activation of shuttle systems that provide fuel to neighboring neurons in the form of lactate and ketone bodies.-Thevenet, J., De Marchi, U., Santo Domingo, J., Christinat, N., Bultot, L., Lefebvre, G., Sakamoto, K., Descombes, P., Masoodi, M., Wiederkehr, A. Medium-chain fatty acids inhibit mitochondrial metabolism in astrocytes promoting astrocyte-neuron lactate and ketone body shuttle systems. © FASEB.

  18. Accumulation of silver nanoparticles by cultured primary brain astrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Luther, Eva M; Koehler, Yvonne; Dringen, Ralf [Center for Biomolecular Interactions Bremen, University of Bremen, PO Box 330440, D-28334 Bremen (Germany); Diendorf, Joerg; Epple, Matthias, E-mail: ralf.dringen@uni-bremen.de [Inorganic Chemistry and Center for Nanointegration Duisburg-Essen, University of Duisburg-Essen, Universitaetsstrasse 5-7, D-45117 Essen (Germany)

    2011-09-16

    Silver nanoparticles (AgNP) are components of various food industry products and are frequently used for medical equipment and materials. Although such particles enter the vertebrate brain, little is known on their biocompatibility for brain cells. To study the consequences of an AgNP exposure of brain cells we have treated astrocyte-rich primary cultures with polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP)-coated AgNP. The incubation of cultured astrocytes with micromolar concentrations of AgNP for up to 24 h resulted in a time- and concentration-dependent accumulation of silver, but did not compromise the cell viability nor lower the cellular glutathione content. In contrast, the incubation of astrocytes for 4 h with identical amounts of silver as AgNO{sub 3} already severely compromised the cell viability and completely deprived the cells of glutathione. The accumulation of AgNP by astrocytes was proportional to the concentration of AgNP applied and significantly lowered by about 30% in the presence of the endocytosis inhibitors chloroquine or amiloride. Incubation at 4 {sup 0}C reduced the accumulation of AgNP by 80% compared to the values obtained for cells that had been exposed to AgNP at 37 {sup 0}C. These data demonstrate that viable cultured brain astrocytes efficiently accumulate PVP-coated AgNP in a temperature-dependent process that most likely involves endocytotic pathways.

  19. Electrical coupling between hippocampal astrocytes in rat brain slices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meme, William; Vandecasteele, Marie; Giaume, Christian; Venance, Laurent

    2009-04-01

    Gap junctions in astrocytes play a crucial role in intercellular communication by supporting both biochemical and electrical coupling between adjacent cells. Despite the critical role of electrical coupling in the network organization of these glial cells, the electrophysiological properties of gap junctions have been characterized in cultures while no direct evidence has been sought in situ. In the present study, gap-junctional currents were investigated using simultaneous dual whole-cell patch-clamp recordings between astrocytes from rat hippocampal slices. Bidirectional electrotonic coupling was observed in 82% of the cell pairs with an average coupling coefficient of 5.1%. Double patch-clamp analysis indicated that junctional currents were independent of the transjunctional voltage over a range from -100 to +110 mV. Interestingly, astrocytic electrical coupling displayed weak low-pass filtering properties compared to neuronal electrical synapses. Finally, during uncoupling processes triggered by either the gap-junction inhibitor carbenoxolone or endothelin-1, an increase in the input resistance in the injected cell paralleled the decrease in the coupling coefficient. Altogether, these results demonstrate that hippocampal astrocytes are electrically coupled through gap-junction channels characterized by properties that are distinct from those of electrical synapses between neurons. In addition, gap-junctional communication is efficiently regulated by endogenous compounds. This is taken to represent a mode of communication that may have important implications for the functional role of astrocyte networks in situ.

  20. Staurosporine induces different cell death forms in cultured rat astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simenc, Janez; Lipnik-Stangelj, Metoda

    2012-01-01

    Astroglial cells are frequently involved in malignant transformation. Besides apoptosis, necroptosis, a different form of regulated cell death, seems to be related with glioblastoma genesis, proliferation, angiogenesis and invasion. In the present work we elucidated mechanisms of necroptosis in cultured astrocytes, and compared them with apoptosis, caused by staurosporine. Cultured rat cortical astrocytes were used for a cell death studies. Cell death was induced by different concentrations of staurosporine, and modified by inhibitors of apoptosis (z-vad-fmk) and necroptosis (nec-1). Different forms of a cell death were detected using flow cytometry. We showed that staurosporine, depending on concentration, induces both, apoptosis as well as necroptosis. Treatment with 10 −7 M staurosporine increased apoptosis of astrocytes after the regeneration in a staurosporine free medium. When caspases were inhibited, apoptosis was attenuated, while necroptosis was slightly increased. Treatment with 10 −6 M staurosporine induced necroptosis that occurred after the regeneration of astrocytes in a staurosporine free medium, as well as without regeneration period. Necroptosis was significantly attenuated by nec-1 which inhibits RIP1 kinase. On the other hand, the inhibition of caspases had no effect on necroptosis. Furthermore, staurosporine activated RIP1 kinase increased the production of reactive oxygen species, while an antioxidant BHA significantly attenuated necroptosis. Staurosporine can induce apoptosis and/or necroptosis in cultured astrocytes via different signalling pathways. Distinction between different forms of cell death is crucial in the studies of therapy-induced necroptosis

  1. Cell adhesion and matricellular support by astrocytes of the tripartite synapse

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hillen, Anne E J; Burbach, J Peter H; Hol, Elly M

    2018-01-01

    Astrocytes contribute to the formation, function, and plasticity of synapses. Their processes enwrap the neuronal components of the tripartite synapse, and due to this close interaction they are perfectly positioned to modulate neuronal communication. The interaction between astrocytes and synapses

  2. Molecular Subtyping of Serous Ovarian Tumors Reveals Multiple Connections to Intrinsic Breast Cancer Subtypes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jönsson, Jenny-Maria; Johansson, Ida; Dominguez-Valentin, Mev

    2014-01-01

    expressed between benign and malignant serous ovarian tumors, with cell cycle processes enriched in the malignant subgroup. Borderline tumors were split between the two clusters. Significant correlations between the malignant serous tumors and the highly aggressive ovarian cancer signatures, and the basal...

  3. Preclinical Studies of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-01

    Pluripotent Stem Cell -Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Nicholas J. Maragakis, M.D...Pluripotent Stem Cell -Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-10-1-0520 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d...into astrocytes following transplantation. 15. SUBJECT TERMS Stem Cells , iPS cells, astrocytes, familial ALS 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF

  4. Novel cell separation method for molecular analysis of neuron-astrocyte co-cultures

    OpenAIRE

    Goudriaan, Andrea; Camargo, Nutabi; Carney, Karen E.; Oliet, Stéphane H. R.; Smit, August B.; Verheijen, Mark H. G.

    2014-01-01

    Over the last decade, the importance of astrocyte-neuron communication in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity has become increasingly clear. Since neuron-astrocyte interactions represent highly dynamic and reciprocal processes, we hypothesized that many astrocyte genes may be regulated as a consequence of their interactions with maturing neurons. In order to identify such neuron-responsive astrocyte genes in vitro, we sought to establish an expedited technique for separation of neuro...

  5. Novel cell separation method for molecular analysis of neuron-astrocyte cocultures

    OpenAIRE

    Andrea eGoudriaan; Nutabi eCamargo; Karen eCarney; Karen eCarney; Karen eCarney; Stéphane H.R. Oliet; Stéphane H.R. Oliet; August B. Smit; Mark H.G. Verheijen

    2014-01-01

    Over the last decade, the importance of astrocyte-neuron communication in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity has become increasingly clear. Since neuron-astrocyte interactions represent highly dynamic and reciprocal processes, we hypothesized that many astrocyte genes may be regulated as a consequence of their interactions with maturing neurons. In order to identify such neuron-responsive astrocyte genes in vitro, we sought to establish an expedite technique for separation of neuron...

  6. Diabetes and Breast Cancer Subtypes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heleen K Bronsveld

    Full Text Available Women with diabetes have a worse survival after breast cancer diagnosis compared to women without diabetes. This may be due to a different etiological profile, leading to the development of more aggressive breast cancer subtypes. Our aim was to investigate whether insulin and non-insulin treated women with diabetes develop specific clinicopathological breast cancer subtypes compared to women without diabetes.This cross-sectional study included randomly selected patients with invasive breast cancer diagnosed in 2000-2010. Stratified by age at breast cancer diagnosis (≤50 and >50 years, women with diabetes were 2:1 frequency-matched on year of birth and age at breast cancer diagnosis (both in 10-year categories to women without diabetes, to select ~300 patients with tumor tissue available. Tumor MicroArrays were stained by immunohistochemistry for estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER, PR, HER2, Ki67, CK5/6, CK14, and p63. A pathologist scored all stains and revised morphology and grade. Associations between diabetes/insulin treatment and clinicopathological subtypes were analyzed using multivariable logistic regression. Morphology and grade were not significantly different between women with diabetes (n = 211 and women without diabetes (n = 101, irrespective of menopausal status. Premenopausal women with diabetes tended to have more often PR-negative (OR = 2.44(95%CI:1.07-5.55, HER2-negative (OR = 2.84(95%CI:1.11-7.22, and basal-like (OR = 3.14(95%CI:1.03-9.60 tumors than the women without diabetes, with non-significantly increased frequencies of ER-negative (OR = 2.48(95%CI:0.95-6.45 and triple negative (OR = 2.60(95%CI:0.88-7.67 tumors. After adjustment for age and BMI, the associations remained similar in size but less significant. We observed no evidence for associations of clinicopathological subtypes with diabetes in postmenopausal women, or with insulin treatment in general.We found no compelling evidence that women with diabetes

  7. Diabetes and Breast Cancer Subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bronsveld, Heleen K; Jensen, Vibeke; Vahl, Pernille; De Bruin, Marie L; Cornelissen, Sten; Sanders, Joyce; Auvinen, Anssi; Haukka, Jari; Andersen, Morten; Vestergaard, Peter; Schmidt, Marjanka K

    2017-01-01

    Women with diabetes have a worse survival after breast cancer diagnosis compared to women without diabetes. This may be due to a different etiological profile, leading to the development of more aggressive breast cancer subtypes. Our aim was to investigate whether insulin and non-insulin treated women with diabetes develop specific clinicopathological breast cancer subtypes compared to women without diabetes. This cross-sectional study included randomly selected patients with invasive breast cancer diagnosed in 2000-2010. Stratified by age at breast cancer diagnosis (≤50 and >50 years), women with diabetes were 2:1 frequency-matched on year of birth and age at breast cancer diagnosis (both in 10-year categories) to women without diabetes, to select ~300 patients with tumor tissue available. Tumor MicroArrays were stained by immunohistochemistry for estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER, PR), HER2, Ki67, CK5/6, CK14, and p63. A pathologist scored all stains and revised morphology and grade. Associations between diabetes/insulin treatment and clinicopathological subtypes were analyzed using multivariable logistic regression. Morphology and grade were not significantly different between women with diabetes (n = 211) and women without diabetes (n = 101), irrespective of menopausal status. Premenopausal women with diabetes tended to have more often PR-negative (OR = 2.44(95%CI:1.07-5.55)), HER2-negative (OR = 2.84(95%CI:1.11-7.22)), and basal-like (OR = 3.14(95%CI:1.03-9.60) tumors than the women without diabetes, with non-significantly increased frequencies of ER-negative (OR = 2.48(95%CI:0.95-6.45)) and triple negative (OR = 2.60(95%CI:0.88-7.67) tumors. After adjustment for age and BMI, the associations remained similar in size but less significant. We observed no evidence for associations of clinicopathological subtypes with diabetes in postmenopausal women, or with insulin treatment in general. We found no compelling evidence that women with diabetes, treated

  8. Unsupervised deep learning reveals prognostically relevant subtypes of glioblastoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Jonathan D; Cai, Chunhui; Lu, Xinghua

    2017-10-03

    One approach to improving the personalized treatment of cancer is to understand the cellular signaling transduction pathways that cause cancer at the level of the individual patient. In this study, we used unsupervised deep learning to learn the hierarchical structure within cancer gene expression data. Deep learning is a group of machine learning algorithms that use multiple layers of hidden units to capture hierarchically related, alternative representations of the input data. We hypothesize that this hierarchical structure learned by deep learning will be related to the cellular signaling system. Robust deep learning model selection identified a network architecture that is biologically plausible. Our model selection results indicated that the 1st hidden layer of our deep learning model should contain about 1300 hidden units to most effectively capture the covariance structure of the input data. This agrees with the estimated number of human transcription factors, which is approximately 1400. This result lends support to our hypothesis that the 1st hidden layer of a deep learning model trained on gene expression data may represent signals related to transcription factor activation. Using the 3rd hidden layer representation of each tumor as learned by our unsupervised deep learning model, we performed consensus clustering on all tumor samples-leading to the discovery of clusters of glioblastoma multiforme with differential survival. One of these clusters contained all of the glioblastoma samples with G-CIMP, a known methylation phenotype driven by the IDH1 mutation and associated with favorable prognosis, suggesting that the hidden units in the 3rd hidden layer representations captured a methylation signal without explicitly using methylation data as input. We also found differentially expressed genes and well-known mutations (NF1, IDH1, EGFR) that were uniquely correlated with each of these clusters. Exploring these unique genes and mutations will allow us to further investigate the disease mechanisms underlying each of these clusters. In summary, we show that a deep learning model can be trained to represent biologically and clinically meaningful abstractions of cancer gene expression data. Understanding what additional relationships these hidden layer abstractions have with the cancer cellular signaling system could have a significant impact on the understanding and treatment of cancer.

  9. Astrocytes promote myelination in response to electrical impulses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishibashi, Tomoko; Dakin, Kelly A; Stevens, Beth; Lee, Philip R; Kozlov, Serguei V; Stewart, Colin L; Fields, R Douglas

    2006-03-16

    Myelin, the insulating layers of membrane wrapped around axons by oligodendrocytes, is essential for normal impulse conduction. It forms during late stages of fetal development but continues into early adult life. Myelination correlates with cognitive development and can be regulated by impulse activity through unknown molecular mechanisms. Astrocytes do not form myelin, but these nonneuronal cells can promote myelination in ways that are not understood. Here, we identify a link between myelination, astrocytes, and electrical impulse activity in axons that is mediated by the cytokine leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF). These findings show that LIF is released by astrocytes in response to ATP liberated from axons firing action potentials, and LIF promotes myelination by mature oligodendrocytes. This activity-dependent mechanism promoting myelination could regulate myelination according to functional activity or environmental experience and may offer new approaches to treating demyelinating diseases.

  10. Glutamate oxidation in astrocytes: Roles of glutamate dehydrogenase and aminotransferases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKenna, Mary C; Stridh, Malin H; McNair, Laura Frendrup

    2016-01-01

    to the presynaptic neurons as the nonexcitatory amino acid glutamine. The cycle was initially thought to function with a 1:1 ratio between glutamate released and glutamine taken up by neurons. However, studies of glutamate metabolism in astrocytes have shown that a considerable proportion of glutamate undergoes...... the enzymes that mediate this conversion. Methods include pharmacological tools such as the transaminase inhibitor aminooxyacetic acid, studies using GDH knockout mice, and siRNA-mediated knockdown of GDH in astrocytes. Studies in brain slices incubated with [15N]glutamate demonstrated activity of GDH......The cellular distribution of transporters and enzymes related to glutamate metabolism led to the concept of the glutamate–glutamine cycle. Glutamate is released as a neurotransmitter and taken up primarily by astrocytes ensheathing the synapses. The glutamate carbon skeleton is transferred back...

  11. Are astrocytes executive cells within the central nervous system?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto E. Sica

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Experimental evidence suggests that astrocytes play a crucial role in the physiology of the central nervous system (CNS by modulating synaptic activity and plasticity. Based on what is currently known we postulate that astrocytes are fundamental, along with neurons, for the information processing that takes place within the CNS. On the other hand, experimental findings and human observations signal that some of the primary degenerative diseases of the CNS, like frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s dementia, Huntington’s dementia, primary cerebellar ataxias and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, all of which affect the human species exclusively, may be due to astroglial dysfunction. This hypothesis is supported by observations that demonstrated that the killing of neurons by non-neural cells plays a major role in the pathogenesis of those diseases, at both their onset and their progression. Furthermore, recent findings suggest that astrocytes might be involved in the pathogenesis of some psychiatric disorders as well.

  12. Dynamical patterns of calcium signaling in a functional model of neuron-astrocyte networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Postnov, D.E.; Koreshkov, R.N.; Brazhe, N.A.

    2009-01-01

    We propose a functional mathematical model for neuron-astrocyte networks. The model incorporates elements of the tripartite synapse and the spatial branching structure of coupled astrocytes. We consider glutamate-induced calcium signaling as a specific mode of excitability and transmission...... in astrocytic-neuronal networks. We reproduce local and global dynamical patterns observed experimentally....

  13. Regulation of Neuron-Astrocyte Metabolic Coupling across the Sleep-Wake Cycle

    KAUST Repository

    Petit, Jean-Marie; Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this review is to bring into perspective the role of astrocytes and neurometabolic coupling in the regulation of the sleep/wake cycle. The data reviewed also suggest an important role of the astrocytic network. In addition, the role of astrocytes in NMC mechanisms is consistent with the “local and use dependent” sleep hypothesis.

  14. Novel cell separation method for molecular analysis of neuron-astrocyte co-cultures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Goudriaan, A.; Camargo, N.K.; Carney, K.E.; Oliet, S.H.R.; Smit, A.B.; Verheijen, M.H.G.

    2014-01-01

    Over the last decade, the importance of astrocyte-neuron communication in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity has become increasingly clear. Since neuron-astrocyte interactions represent highly dynamic and reciprocal processes, we hypothesized that many astrocyte genes may be regulated as a

  15. Neuron to astrocyte communication via cannabinoid receptors is necessary for sustained epileptiform activity in rat hippocampus.

    OpenAIRE

    Coiret Guyllaume; Ster Jeanne; Grewe Benjamin; Wendling Fabrice; Helmchen Fritjof; Gerber Urs; Benquet Pascal

    2012-01-01

    International audience; Astrocytes are integral functional components of synapses, regulating transmission and plasticity. They have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, although their precise roles have not been comprehensively characterized. Astrocytes integrate activity from neighboring synapses by responding to neuronally released neurotransmitters such as glutamate and ATP. Strong activation of astrocytes mediated by these neurotransmitters can promote seizure-like activ...

  16. NT2 derived neuronal and astrocytic network signalling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric J Hill

    Full Text Available A major focus of stem cell research is the generation of neurons that may then be implanted to treat neurodegenerative diseases. However, a picture is emerging where astrocytes are partners to neurons in sustaining and modulating brain function. We therefore investigated the functional properties of NT2 derived astrocytes and neurons using electrophysiological and calcium imaging approaches. NT2 neurons (NT2Ns expressed sodium dependent action potentials, as well as responses to depolarisation and the neurotransmitter glutamate. NT2Ns exhibited spontaneous and coordinated calcium elevations in clusters and in extended processes, indicating local and long distance signalling. Tetrodotoxin sensitive network activity could also be evoked by electrical stimulation. Similarly, NT2 astrocytes (NT2As exhibited morphology and functional properties consistent with this glial cell type. NT2As responded to neuronal activity and to exogenously applied neurotransmitters with calcium elevations, and in contrast to neurons, also exhibited spontaneous rhythmic calcium oscillations. NT2As also generated propagating calcium waves that were gap junction and purinergic signalling dependent. Our results show that NT2 derived astrocytes exhibit appropriate functionality and that NT2N networks interact with NT2A networks in co-culture. These findings underline the utility of such cultures to investigate human brain cell type signalling under controlled conditions. Furthermore, since stem cell derived neuron function and survival is of great importance therapeutically, our findings suggest that the presence of complementary astrocytes may be valuable in supporting stem cell derived neuronal networks. Indeed, this also supports the intriguing possibility of selective therapeutic replacement of astrocytes in diseases where these cells are either lost or lose functionality.

  17. Ketogenic diet and astrocyte/neuron metabolic interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vamecq Joseph

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available The ketogenic diet is an anticonvulsant diet enriched in fat. It provides the body with a minimal protein requirement and a restricted carbohydrate supply, the vast majority of calories (more than 80-90% being given by fat. Though anticonvulsant activity of ketogenic diet has been well documented by a large number of experimental and clinical studies, underlying mechanisms still remain partially unclear. Astrocyte-neuron interactions, among which metabolic shuttles, may influence synaptic activity and hence anticonvulsant protection. The astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttles may be themselves influenced by the availability in energetic substrates such as hydrates of carbon and fats. Historically, ketogenic diet had been designed to mimic changes such as ketosis occurring upon starvation, a physiological state already known to exhibit anticonvulsant protection and sometimes referred to as “water diet”. For this reason, a special attention should be paid to metabolic features shared in common by ketogenic diet and starvation and especially those features that might result in anticonvulsant protection. Compared to feeding by usual mixed diet, starvation and ketogenic diet are both characterised by increased fat, lowered glucose and aminoacid supplies to cells. The resulting impact of these changes in energetic substrates on astrocyte/neuron metabolic shuttles might have anticonvulsant and/or neuroprotective properties. This is the aim of this communication to review some important astrocyte/neuron metabolic interactions (astrocyte/neuron lactate shuttle, glutamateinduced astrocytic glycolysis activation, glutamate/glutamine cycle along with the neurovascular coupling and the extent to which the way of their alteration by starvation and/or ketogenic diet might result in seizure and/or brain protection.

  18. Contributions of Glycogen to Astrocytic Energetics during Brain Activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A.; Cruz, Nancy F.

    2014-01-01

    Glycogen is the major store of glucose in brain and is mainly in astrocytes. Brain glycogen levels in unstimulated, carefully-handled rats are 10-12 mol/g, and assuming that astrocytes account for half the brain mass, astrocytic glycogen content is twice as high. Glycogen turnover is slow under basal conditions, but it is mobilized during activation. There is no net increase in incorporation of label from glucose during activation, whereas label release from pre-labeled glycogen exceeds net glycogen consumption, which increases during stronger stimuli. Because glycogen level is restored by non-oxidative metabolism, astrocytes can influence the global ratio of oxygen to glucose utilization. Compensatory increases in utilization of blood glucose during inhibition of glycogen phosphorylase are large and approximate glycogenolysis rates during sensory stimulation. In contrast, glycogenolysis rates during hypoglycemia are low due to continued glucose delivery and oxidation of endogenous substrates; rates that preserve neuronal function in the absence of glucose are also low, probably due to metabolite oxidation. Modeling studies predict that glycogenolysis maintains a high level of glucose-6-phosphate in astrocytes to maintain feedback inhibition of hexokinase, thereby diverting glucose for use by neurons. The fate of glycogen carbon in vivo is not known, but lactate efflux from brain best accounts for the major metabolic characteristics during activation of living brain. Substantial shuttling coupled with oxidation of glycogen-derived lactate is inconsistent with available evidence. Glycogen has important roles in astrocytic energetics, including glucose sparing, control of extracellular K+ level, oxidative stress management, and memory consolidation; it is a multi-functional compound. PMID:24515302

  19. Contributions of glycogen to astrocytic energetics during brain activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F

    2015-02-01

    Glycogen is the major store of glucose in brain and is mainly in astrocytes. Brain glycogen levels in unstimulated, carefully-handled rats are 10-12 μmol/g, and assuming that astrocytes account for half the brain mass, astrocytic glycogen content is twice as high. Glycogen turnover is slow under basal conditions, but it is mobilized during activation. There is no net increase in incorporation of label from glucose during activation, whereas label release from pre-labeled glycogen exceeds net glycogen consumption, which increases during stronger stimuli. Because glycogen level is restored by non-oxidative metabolism, astrocytes can influence the global ratio of oxygen to glucose utilization. Compensatory increases in utilization of blood glucose during inhibition of glycogen phosphorylase are large and approximate glycogenolysis rates during sensory stimulation. In contrast, glycogenolysis rates during hypoglycemia are low due to continued glucose delivery and oxidation of endogenous substrates; rates that preserve neuronal function in the absence of glucose are also low, probably due to metabolite oxidation. Modeling studies predict that glycogenolysis maintains a high level of glucose-6-phosphate in astrocytes to maintain feedback inhibition of hexokinase, thereby diverting glucose for use by neurons. The fate of glycogen carbon in vivo is not known, but lactate efflux from brain best accounts for the major metabolic characteristics during activation of living brain. Substantial shuttling coupled with oxidation of glycogen-derived lactate is inconsistent with available evidence. Glycogen has important roles in astrocytic energetics, including glucose sparing, control of extracellular K(+) level, oxidative stress management, and memory consolidation; it is a multi-functional compound.

  20. Transcriptional regulation of Nfix by NFIB drives astrocytic maturation within the developing spinal cord.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matuzelski, Elise; Bunt, Jens; Harkins, Danyon; Lim, Jonathan W C; Gronostajski, Richard M; Richards, Linda J; Harris, Lachlan; Piper, Michael

    2017-12-15

    During mouse spinal cord development, ventricular zone progenitor cells transition from producing neurons to producing glia at approximately embryonic day 11.5, a process known as the gliogenic switch. The transcription factors Nuclear Factor I (NFI) A and B initiate this developmental transition, but the contribution of a third NFI member, NFIX, remains unknown. Here, we reveal that ventricular zone progenitor cells within the spinal cord express NFIX after the onset of NFIA and NFIB expression, and after the gliogenic switch has occurred. Mice lacking NFIX exhibit normal neurogenesis within the spinal cord, and, while early astrocytic differentiation proceeds normally, aspects of terminal astrocytic differentiation are impaired. Finally, we report that, in the absence of Nfia or Nfib, there is a marked reduction in the spinal cord expression of NFIX, and that NFIB can transcriptionally activate Nfix expression in vitro. These data demonstrate that NFIX is part of the downstream transcriptional program through which NFIA and NFIB coordinate gliogenesis within the spinal cord. This hierarchical organisation of NFI protein expression and function during spinal cord gliogenesis reveals a previously unrecognised auto-regulatory mechanism within this gene family. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. The metabolism of malate by cultured rat brain astrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenna, M.C.; Tildon, J.T.; Couto, R.; Stevenson, J.H.; Caprio, F.J. (Department of Pediatrics, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore (USA))

    1990-12-01

    Since malate is known to play an important role in a variety of functions in the brain including energy metabolism, the transfer of reducing equivalents and possibly metabolic trafficking between different cell types; a series of biochemical determinations were initiated to evaluate the rate of 14CO2 production from L-(U-14C)malate in rat brain astrocytes. The 14CO2 production from labeled malate was almost totally suppressed by the metabolic inhibitors rotenone and antimycin A suggesting that most of malate metabolism was coupled to the electron transport system. A double reciprocal plot of the 14CO2 production from the metabolism of labeled malate revealed biphasic kinetics with two apparent Km and Vmax values suggesting the presence of more than one mechanism of malate metabolism in these cells. Subsequent experiments were carried out using 0.01 mM and 0.5 mM malate to determine whether the addition of effectors would differentially alter the metabolism of high and low concentrations of malate. Effectors studied included compounds which could be endogenous regulators of malate metabolism and metabolic inhibitors which would provide information regarding the mechanisms regulating malate metabolism. Both lactate and aspartate decreased 14CO2 production from malate equally. However, a number of effectors were identified which selectively altered the metabolism of 0.01 mM malate including aminooxyacetate, furosemide, N-acetylaspartate, oxaloacetate, pyruvate and glucose, but had little or no effect on the metabolism of 0.5 mM malate. In addition, alpha-ketoglutarate and succinate decreased 14CO2 production from 0.01 mM malate much more than from 0.5 mM malate. In contrast, a number of effectors altered the metabolism of 0.5 mM malate more than 0.01 mM. These included methionine sulfoximine, glutamate, malonate, alpha-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamate and ouabain.

  2. Specific trauma subtypes improve the predictive validity of the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire in Iraqi refugees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnetz, Bengt B; Broadbridge, Carissa L; Jamil, Hikmet; Lumley, Mark A; Pole, Nnamdi; Barkho, Evone; Fakhouri, Monty; Talia, Yousif Rofa; Arnetz, Judith E

    2014-12-01

    Trauma exposure contributes to poor mental health among refugees, and exposure often is measured using a cumulative index of items from the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire (HTQ). Few studies, however, have asked whether trauma subtypes derived from the HTQ could be superior to this cumulative index in predicting mental health outcomes. A community sample of recently arrived Iraqi refugees (N = 298) completed the HTQ and measures of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression symptoms. Principal components analysis of HTQ items revealed a 5-component subtype model of trauma that accounted for more item variance than a 1-component solution. These trauma subtypes also accounted for more variance in PTSD and depression symptoms (12 and 10%, respectively) than did the cumulative trauma index (7 and 3%, respectively). Trauma subtypes provided more information than cumulative trauma in the prediction of negative mental health outcomes. Therefore, use of these subtypes may enhance the utility of the HTQ when assessing at-risk populations.

  3. Sox2 Promotes Malignancy in Glioblastoma by Regulating Plasticity and Astrocytic Differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Artem D. Berezovsky

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The high-mobility group–box transcription factor sex-determining region Y–box 2 (Sox2 is essential for the maintenance of stem cells from early development to adult tissues. Sox2 can reprogram differentiated cells into pluripotent cells in concert with other factors and is overexpressed in various cancers. In glioblastoma (GBM, Sox2 is a marker of cancer stemlike cells (CSCs in neurosphere cultures and is associated with the proneural molecular subtype. Here, we report that Sox2 expression pattern in GBM tumors and patient-derived mouse xenografts is not restricted to a small percentage of cells and is coexpressed with various lineage markers, suggesting that its expression extends beyond CSCs to encompass more differentiated neoplastic cells across molecular subtypes. Employing a CSC derived from a patient with GBM and isogenic differentiated cell model, we show that Sox2 knockdown in the differentiated state abolished dedifferentiation and acquisition of CSC phenotype. Furthermore, Sox2 deficiency specifically impaired the astrocytic component of a biphasic gliosarcoma xenograft model while allowing the formation of tumors with sarcomatous phenotype. The expression of genes associated with stem cells and malignancy were commonly downregulated in both CSCs and serum-differentiated cells on Sox2 knockdown. Genes previously shown to be associated with pluripontency and CSCs were only affected in the CSC state, whereas embryonic stem cell self-renewal genes and cytokine signaling were downregulated, and the Wnt pathway activated in differentiated Sox2-deficient cells. Our results indicate that Sox2 regulates the expression of key genes and pathways involved in GBM malignancy, in both cancer stemlike and differentiated cells, and maintains plasticity for bidirectional conversion between the two states, with significant clinical implications.

  4. Astrocytic glycogen-derived lactate fuels the brain during exhaustive exercise to maintain endurance capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsui, Takashi; Omuro, Hideki; Liu, Yu-Fan; Soya, Mariko; Shima, Takeru; McEwen, Bruce S; Soya, Hideaki

    2017-06-13

    Brain glycogen stored in astrocytes provides lactate as an energy source to neurons through monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) to maintain neuronal functions such as hippocampus-regulated memory formation. Although prolonged exhaustive exercise decreases brain glycogen, the role of this decrease and lactate transport in the exercising brain remains less clear. Because muscle glycogen fuels exercising muscles, we hypothesized that astrocytic glycogen plays an energetic role in the prolonged-exercising brain to maintain endurance capacity through lactate transport. To test this hypothesis, we used a rat model of exhaustive exercise and capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry-based metabolomics to observe comprehensive energetics of the brain (cortex and hippocampus) and muscle (plantaris). At exhaustion, muscle glycogen was depleted but brain glycogen was only decreased. The levels of MCT2, which takes up lactate in neurons, increased in the brain, as did muscle MCTs. Metabolomics revealed that brain, but not muscle, ATP was maintained with lactate and other glycogenolytic/glycolytic sources. Intracerebroventricular injection of the glycogen phosphorylase inhibitor 1,4-dideoxy-1,4-imino-d-arabinitol did not affect peripheral glycemic conditions but suppressed brain lactate production and decreased hippocampal ATP levels at exhaustion. An MCT2 inhibitor, α-cyano-4-hydroxy-cinnamate, triggered a similar response that resulted in lower endurance capacity. These findings provide direct evidence for the energetic role of astrocytic glycogen-derived lactate in the exhaustive-exercising brain, implicating the significance of brain glycogen level in endurance capacity. Glycogen-maintained ATP in the brain is a possible defense mechanism for neurons in the exhausted brain.

  5. Different frequencies of drug resistance mutations among HIV-1 subtypes circulating in China: a comprehensive study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongshuai Sui

    Full Text Available The rapid spreading of HIV drug resistance is threatening the overall success of free HAART in China. Much work has been done on drug-resistant mutations, however, most of which were based on subtype B. Due to different genetic background, subtypes difference would have an effect on the development of drug-resistant mutations, which has already been proved by more and more studies. In China, the main epidemic subtypes are CRF07_BC, CRF08_BC, Thai B and CRF01_AE. The depiction of drug resistance mutations in those subtypes will be helpful for the selection of regimens for Chinese. In this study, the distributions difference of amino acids at sites related to HIV drug resistance were compared among subtype B, CRF01_AE, CRF07_BC and CRF08_BC strains prevalent in China. The amino acid composition of sequences belonging to different subtypes, which were obtained from untreated and treated individuals separately, were also compared. The amino acids proportions of 19 sites in RT among subtype B, CRF01_AE and CRF08_BC have significant difference in drug resistance groups (chi-square test, p<0.05. Genetic barriers analysis revealed that sites 69, 138, 181, 215 and 238 were significantly different among subtypes (Kruskal Wallis test, p<0.05. All subtypes shared three highest prevalent drug resistance sites 103, 181 and 184 in common. Many drug resistant sites in protease show surprising high proportions in almost all subtypes in drug-naïve patients. This is the first comprehensive study in China on different development of drug resistance among different subtypes. The detailed data will lay a foundation for HIV treatment regimens design and improve HIV therapy in China.

  6. Astrocyte truncated-TrkB mediates BDNF antiapoptotic effect leading to neuroprotection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saba, Julieta; Turati, Juan; Ramírez, Delia; Carniglia, Lila; Durand, Daniela; Lasaga, Mercedes; Caruso, Carla

    2018-05-31

    Astrocytes are glial cells that help maintain brain homeostasis and become reactive in neurodegenerative processes releasing both harmful and beneficial factors. We have demonstrated that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression is induced by melanocortins in astrocytes but BDNF actions in astrocytes are largely unknown. We hypothesize that BDNF may prevent astrocyte death resulting in neuroprotection. We found that BDNF increased astrocyte viability, preventing apoptosis induced by serum deprivation by decreasing active caspase-3 and p53 expression. The antiapoptotic action of BDNF was abolished by ANA-12 (a specific TrkB antagonist) and by K252a (a general Trk antagonist). Astrocytes only express the BDNF receptor TrkB truncated isoform 1, TrkB-T1. BDNF induced ERK, Akt and Src (a non-receptor tyrosine kinase) activation in astrocytes. Blocking ERK and Akt pathways abolished BDNF protection in serum deprivation-induced cell death. Moreover, BDNF protected astrocytes from death by 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP), an effect also blocked by ANA-12, K252a, and inhibitors of ERK, calcium and Src. BDNF reduced reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels induced in astrocytes by 3-NP and increased xCT expression and glutathione levels. Astrocyte conditioned media (ACM) from untreated astrocytes partially protected PC12 neurons whereas ACM from BDNF-treated astrocytes completely protected PC12 neurons from 3-NP-induced apoptosis. Both ACM from control and BDNF-treated astrocytes markedly reduced ROS levels induced by 3-NP in PC12 cells. Our results demonstrate that BDNF protects astrocytes from cell death through TrkB-T1 signaling, exerts an antioxidant action, and induces release of neuroprotective factors from astrocytes. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  7. Astrocytes protect neurons against methylmercury via ATP/P2Y(1) receptor-mediated pathways in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noguchi, Yusuke; Shinozaki, Youichi; Fujishita, Kayoko; Shibata, Keisuke; Imura, Yoshio; Morizawa, Yosuke; Gachet, Christian; Koizumi, Schuichi

    2013-01-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is a well known environmental pollutant that induces serious neuronal damage. Although MeHg readily crosses the blood-brain barrier, and should affect both neurons and glial cells, how it affects glia or neuron-to-glia interactions has received only limited attention. Here, we report that MeHg triggers ATP/P2Y1 receptor signals in astrocytes, thereby protecting neurons against MeHg via interleukin-6 (IL-6)-mediated pathways. MeHg increased several mRNAs in astrocytes, among which IL-6 was the highest. For this, ATP/P2Y1 receptor-mediated mechanisms were required because the IL-6 production was (i) inhibited by a P2Y1 receptor antagonist, MRS2179, (ii) abolished in astrocytes obtained from P2Y1 receptor-knockout mice, and (iii) mimicked by exogenously applied ATP. In addition, (iv) MeHg released ATP by exocytosis from astrocytes. As for the intracellular mechanisms responsible for IL-6 production, p38 MAP kinase was involved. MeHg-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) showed neuro-protective effects against MeHg, which was blocked by anti-IL-6 antibody and was mimicked by the application of recombinant IL-6. As for the mechanism of neuro-protection by IL-6, an adenosine A1 receptor-mediated pathway in neurons seems to be involved. Taken together, when astrocytes sense MeHg, they release ATP that autostimulates P2Y1 receptors to upregulate IL-6, thereby leading to A1 receptor-mediated neuro-protection against MeHg.

  8. Molecular subtype classification of urothelial carcinoma in Lynch syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Therkildsen, Christina; Eriksson, Pontus; Höglund, Mattias; Jönsson, Mats; Sjödahl, Gottfrid; Nilbert, Mef; Liedberg, Fredrik

    2018-05-23

    Lynch syndrome confers an increased risk for urothelial carcinoma (UC). Molecular subtypes may be relevant to prognosis and therapeutic possibilities, but have to date not been defined in Lynch syndrome-associated urothelial cancer. We aimed to provide a molecular description of Lynch syndrome-associated UC. Thus, Lynch syndrome-associated UC of the upper urinary tract and the urinary bladder were identified in the Danish hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) register and were transcriptionally and immunohistochemically profiled and further related to data from 307 sporadic urothelial carcinomas. Whole genome mRNA expression profiles of 41 tumors and immunohistochemical stainings against FGFR3, KRT5, CCNB1, RB1, and CDKN2A (p16) of 37 tumors from Lynch syndrome patients were generated. Pathological data, microsatellite instability, anatomic location, and overall survival data was analyzed and compared with sporadic bladder cancer. The 41 Lynch syndrome-associated UC developed at a mean age of 61 years with 59% women. mRNA expression profiling and immunostaining classified the majority of the Lynch syndrome-associated UC as Urothelial-like tumors with only 20% being Genomically Unstable, Basal/SCC-like or other subtypes. The subtypes were associated with stage, grade, and microsatellite instability. Comparison to larger data sets revealed that Lynch syndrome-associated UC share molecular similarities with sporadic UC. In conclusion, transcriptomic and immunohistochemical profiling identifies a predominance of the Urothelial-like molecular subtype in Lynch syndrome and reveals that the molecular subtypes of sporadic bladder cancer are relevant also within this hereditary, mismatch-repair defective subset. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. Molecular Oncology (2018) © 2018 The Authors. Published by FEBS Press and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Astrocyte-to-neuron signaling in response to photostimulation with a femtosecond laser

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yuan; Liu, Xiuli; Zhou, Wei; Zeng, Shaoqun

    2010-08-01

    Conventional stimulation techniques used in studies of astrocyte-to-neuron signaling are invasive or dependent on additional electrical devices or chemicals. Here, we applied photostimulation with a femtosecond laser to selectively stimulate astrocytes in the hippocampal neural network, and the neuronal responses were examined. The results showed that, after photostimulation, cell-specific astrocyte-to-neuron signaling was triggered; sometimes the neuronal responses were even synchronous. Since photostimulation with a femtosecond laser is noninvasive, agent-free, and highly precise, this method has been proved to be efficient in activating astrocytes for investigations of astrocytic functions in neural networks.

  10. Alterations in the Interplay between Neurons, Astrocytes and Microglia in the Rat Dentate Gyrus in Experimental Models of Neurodegeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniele Lana

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The hippocampus is negatively affected by aging and neurodegenerative diseases leading to impaired learning and memory abilities. A diverse series of progressive modifications in the intercellular communication among neurons, astrocytes and microglia occur in the hippocampus during aging or inflammation. A detailed understanding of the neurobiological modifications that contribute to hippocampal dysfunction may reveal new targets for therapeutic intervention. The current study focussed on the interplay between neurons and astroglia in the Granule Layer (GL and the Polymorphic Layer (PL of the Dentate Gyrus (DG of adult, aged and LPS-treated rats. In GL and PL of aged and LPS-treated rats, astrocytes were less numerous than in adult rats. In GL of LPS-treated rats, astrocytes acquired morphological features of reactive astrocytes, such as longer branches than was observed in adult rats. Total and activated microglia increased in the aged and LPS-treated rats, as compared to adult rats. In the GL of aged and LPS-treated rats many neurons were apoptotic. Neurons decreased significantly in GL and PL of aged but not in rats treated with LPS. In PL of aged and LPS-treated rats many damaged neurons were embraced by microglia cells and were infiltrated by branches of astrocyte, which appeared to be bisecting the cell body, forming triads. Reactive microglia had a scavenging activity of dying neurons, as shown by the presence of neuronal debris within their cytoplasm. The levels of the chemokine fractalkine (CX3CL1 increased in hippocampal homogenates of aged rats and rats treated with LPS, and CX3CL1 immunoreactivity colocalized with activated microglia cells. Here we demonstrated that in the DG of aged and LPS-treated rats, astrocytes and microglia cooperate and participate in phagocytosis/phagoptosis of apoptotic granular neurons. The differential expression/activation of astroglia and the alteration of their intercommunication may be responsible for

  11. Primary Neuron/Astrocyte Co-Culture on Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Films: A Template for Studying Astrocyte-Mediated Oxidative Stress in Neurons**

    OpenAIRE

    Kidambi, Srivatsan; Lee, Ilsoon; Chan, Christina

    2008-01-01

    We engineered patterned co-cultures of primary neurons and astrocytes on polyelectrolyte multilayer (PEM) films without the aid of adhesive proteins/ligands to study the oxidative stress mediated by astrocytes on neuronal cells. A number of studies have explored engineering co-culture of neurons and astrocytes predominantly using cell lines rather than primary cells owing to the difficulties involved in attaching primary cells onto synthetic surfaces. To our knowledge this is the first demons...

  12. Hypertension Subtypes among Hypertensive Patients in Ibadan

    OpenAIRE

    Abiodun M. Adeoye; Adewole Adebiyi; Bamidele O. Tayo; Babatunde L. Salako; Adesola Ogunniyi; Richard S. Cooper

    2014-01-01

    Background. Certain hypertension subtypes have been shown to increase the risk for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and may be related to specific underlying genetic determinants. Inappropriate characterization of subtypes of hypertension makes efforts at elucidating the genetic contributions to the etiology of hypertension largely vapid. We report the hypertension subtypes among patients with hypertension from South-Western Nigeria. Methods. A total of 1858 subjects comprising 76% fema...

  13. Astrocyte-specific regulation of hMeCP2 expression in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David L. Hess-Homeier

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Alterations in the expression of Methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2 either by mutations or gene duplication leads to a wide spectrum of neurodevelopmental disorders including Rett Syndrome and MeCP2 duplication disorder. Common features of Rett Syndrome (RTT, MeCP2 duplication disorder, and neuropsychiatric disorders indicate that even moderate changes in MeCP2 protein levels result in functional and structural cell abnormalities. In this study, we investigated two areas of MeCP2 pathophysiology using Drosophila as a model system: the effects of MeCP2 glial gain-of-function activity on circuits controlling sleep behavior, and the cell-type specific regulation of MeCP2 expression. In this study, we first examined the effects of elevated MeCP2 levels on microcircuits by expressing human MeCP2 (hMeCP2 in astrocytes and distinct subsets of amine neurons including dopamine and octopamine (OA neurons. Depending on the cell-type, hMeCP2 expression reduced sleep levels, altered daytime/nighttime sleep patterns, and generated sleep maintenance deficits. Second, we identified a 498 base pair region of the MeCP2e2 isoform that is targeted for regulation in distinct subsets of astrocytes. Levels of the full-length hMeCP2e2 and mutant RTT R106W protein decreased in astrocytes in a temporally and spatially regulated manner. In contrast, expression of the deletion Δ166 hMeCP2 protein was not altered in the entire astrocyte population. qPCR experiments revealed a reduction in full-length hMeCP2e2 transcript levels suggesting transgenic hMeCP2 expression is regulated at the transcriptional level. Given the phenotypic complexities that are caused by alterations in MeCP2 levels, our results provide insight into distinct cellular mechanisms that control MeCP2 expression and link microcircuit abnormalities with defined behavioral deficits.

  14. Activity-dependent switch of GABAergic inhibition into glutamatergic excitation in astrocyte-neuron networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perea, Gertrudis; Gómez, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Covelo, Ana; Ballesteros, Jesús J; Schlosser, Laura; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Martín-Fernández, Mario; Quintana, Ruth; Rayan, Abdelrahman; Díez, Adolfo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Agarwal, Amit; Bergles, Dwight E; Bettler, Bernhard; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Martín, Eduardo D; Kirchhoff, Frank; Araque, Alfonso

    2016-12-24

    Interneurons are critical for proper neural network function and can activate Ca 2+ signaling in astrocytes. However, the impact of the interneuron-astrocyte signaling into neuronal network operation remains unknown. Using the simplest hippocampal Astrocyte-Neuron network, i.e., GABAergic interneuron, pyramidal neuron, single CA3-CA1 glutamatergic synapse, and astrocytes, we found that interneuron-astrocyte signaling dynamically affected excitatory neurotransmission in an activity- and time-dependent manner, and determined the sign (inhibition vs potentiation) of the GABA-mediated effects. While synaptic inhibition was mediated by GABA A receptors, potentiation involved astrocyte GABA B receptors, astrocytic glutamate release, and presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors. Using conditional astrocyte-specific GABA B receptor ( Gabbr1 ) knockout mice, we confirmed the glial source of the interneuron-induced potentiation, and demonstrated the involvement of astrocytes in hippocampal theta and gamma oscillations in vivo. Therefore, astrocytes decode interneuron activity and transform inhibitory into excitatory signals, contributing to the emergence of novel network properties resulting from the interneuron-astrocyte interplay.

  15. Glutamate/glutamine metabolism coupling between astrocytes and glioma cells: neuroprotection and inhibition of glioma growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Pei-Sen; Kang, De-Zhi; Lin, Ru-Ying; Ye, Bing; Wang, Wei; Ye, Zu-Cheng

    2014-07-18

    Glioma glutamate release has been shown to promote the growth of glioma cells and induce neuronal injuries from epilepsy to neuronal death. However, potential counteractions from normal astrocytes against glioma glutamate release have not been fully evaluated. In this study, we investigated the glutamate/glutamine cycling between glioma cells and astrocytes and their impact on neuronal function. Co-cultures of glioma cells with astrocytes (CGA) in direct contact were established under different mix ratio of astrocyte/glioma. Culture medium conditioned in these CGAs were sampled for HPLC measurement, for neuronal ratiometric calcium imaging, and for neuronal survival assay. We found: (1) High levels of glutaminase expression in glioma cells, but not in astrocytes, glutaminase enables glioma cells to release large amount of glutamate in the presence of glutamine. (2) Glutamate levels in CGAs were directly determined by the astrocyte/glioma ratios, indicating a balance between glioma glutamate release and astrocyte glutamate uptake. (3) Culture media from CGAs of higher glioma/astrocyte ratios induced stronger neuronal Ca(2+) response and more severe neuronal death. (4) Co-culturing with astrocytes significantly reduced the growth rate of glioma cells. These results indicate that normal astrocytes in the brain play pivotal roles in glioma growth inhibition and in reducing neuronal injuries from glioma glutamate release. However, as tumor growth, the protective role of astrocytes gradually succumb to glioma cells. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Maltreatment and psychopathy subtypes in high-risk adolescent females

    OpenAIRE

    Coupland, Ruth Louise

    2011-01-01

    Psychopathy is often viewed as a unitary construct, however, research with adults and adolescent males has revealed two heterogeneous subtypes. Primary psychopathy is presumed to have biological underpinnings and is associated with low levels of anxiety and psychological distress. In contrast, secondary psychopathy is believed to result from exposure to adversity, including childhood maltreatment, and is associated with emotional reactivity, impulsivity, and comorbid psychological problems. T...

  17. Impairments of astrocytes are involved in the D-galactose-induced brain aging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lei Ming; Hua Xiangdong; Xiao Ming; Ding Jiong; Han Qunying; Hu Gang

    2008-01-01

    Astrocyte dysfunction is implicated in course of various age-related neurodegenerative diseases. Chronic injection of D-galactose can cause a progressive deterioration in learning and memory capacity and serve as an animal model of aging. To investigate the involvement of astrocytes in this model, oxidative stress biomarkers, biochemical and pathological changes of astrocytes were examined in the hippocampus of the rats with six weeks of D-galactose injection. D-galactose-injected rats displayed impaired antioxidant systems, an increase in nitric oxide levels, and a decrease in reduced glutathione levels. Consistently, western blotting and immunostaining of glial fibrillary acidic protein showed extensive activation of astrocytes. Double-immunofluorescent staining further showed activated astrocytes highly expressed inducible nitric oxide synthase. Electron microscopy demonstrated the degeneration of astrocytes, especially in the aggregated area of synapse and brain microvessels. These findings indicate that impairments of astrocytes are involved in oxidative stress-induced brain aging by chronic injection of D-galactose

  18. Synergistic induction of astrocytic differentiation by factors secreted from meninges in the mouse developing brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawamura, Yoichiro; Katada, Sayako; Noguchi, Hirofumi; Yamamoto, Hiroyuki; Sanosaka, Tsukasa; Iihara, Koji; Nakashima, Kinichi

    2017-11-01

    Astrocytes, which support diverse neuronal functions, are generated from multipotent neural stem/precursor cells (NS/PCs) during brain development. Although many astrocyte-inducing factors have been identified and studied in vitro, the regions and/or cells that produce these factors in the developing brain remain elusive. Here, we show that meninges-produced factors induce astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs. Consistent with the timing when astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs increases, expression of astrocyte-inducing factors is upregulated. Meningeal secretion-mimicking combinatorial treatment of NS/PCs with bone morphogenetic protein 4, retinoic acid and leukemia inhibitory factor synergistically activate the promoter of a typical astrocytic marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein. Taken together, our data suggest that meninges play an important role in astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs in the developing brain. © 2017 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  19. Immunocytochemical detection of the microsomal glucose-6-phosphatase in human brain astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, J E; Hume, R; Busuttil, A; Burchell, A

    1993-10-01

    Using an antibody raised against the catalytic subunit of glucose-6-phosphatase, this enzyme was immunolocalized in many astrocytes in 20 normal human brains. Double immunofluorescence studies showed co-localization of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) with glucose-6-phosphatase in astrocytes. However, not all GFAP-positive cells were also glucose-6-phosphatase positive, indicating that some astrocytes do not contain demonstrable expression of this enzyme. Reactive astrocytes in a variety of abnormal brains were strongly glucose-6-phosphatase positive, but neoplastic astrocytes were often only weakly positive. Expression of the enzyme could not be demonstrated in radial glia, neurons or oligodendroglia. Astrocytes normally contain glycogen and the demonstration that some astrocytes also contain glucose-6-phosphatase indicates that they are competent for both glycogenolysis and gluconeogenesis, which may be critical for neuronal welfare.

  20. Effects of lactic acid on astrocytes in primary culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norenberg, M D; Mozes, L W; Gregorios, J B; Norenberg, L O

    1987-03-01

    Excessive tissue lactic acidosis is considered to be detrimental to the central nervous system (CNS) and may adversely affect recovery from anoxia, ischemia, trauma and epilepsy. Since astrocytes are believed to play a role in pH regulation in the CNS, we studied the effect of this acid on primary astrocyte cultures. Cells exposed to lactic acid showed chromatin clumping, an increase of lipid and dense bodies, a loss of polyribosomal clusters, slightly increased cytoplasmic lucency, swollen mitochondria and tangled intermediate filaments. These alterations progressed with lower pH and longer exposure. Irreversible changes occurred one to two hours after exposure at pH 6; after 30 to 60 minutes (min) at pH 5.5 and after ten to 30 min at pH 5. Comparable results were obtained with the use of other weak acids indicating that the observed changes were due to increased hydrogen ion concentration rather than secondary to lactate per se. Additionally, various concentrations of lactic acid adjusted to identical pH produced similar morphologic alterations. Thus, while lactic acid caused marked and at times irreversible alterations in astrocytes, severe and prolonged acidosis was required to produce such injurious effects. This relative resistance of astrocytes to acidosis is in keeping with their potential role in pH regulation in brain.

  1. role of heterogeneous astrocyte receptor expression in determining

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    2018-02-28

    Feb 28, 2018 ... has been increasing (Denis et al, 1989; Lau and. Breteler, 2006). ... toxicity, the excess glutamate binds to N-Methyl-. D-aspartate ... absorption into the astrocyte (Lau and .... Heales JR, Lam AJ, Duncan AJ, Land JM. 2004.

  2. The Indispensable Roles of Microglia and Astrocytes during Brain Development

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reemst, K.; Noctor, S.C.; Lucassen, P.J.; Hol, E.M.

    2016-01-01

    Glia are essential for brain functioning during development and in the adult brain. Here, we discuss the various roles of both microglia and astrocytes, and their interactions during brain development. Although both cells are fundamentally different in origin and function, they often affect the same

  3. Probabilistic encoding of stimulus strength in astrocyte global calcium signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Croft, Wayne; Reusch, Katharina; Tilunaite, Agne; Russell, Noah A; Thul, Rüdiger; Bellamy, Tomas C

    2016-04-01

    Astrocyte calcium signals can range in size from subcellular microdomains to waves that spread through the whole cell (and into connected cells). The differential roles of such local or global calcium signaling are under intense investigation, but the mechanisms by which local signals evolve into global signals in astrocytes are not well understood, nor are the computational rules by which physiological stimuli are transduced into a global signal. To investigate these questions, we transiently applied receptor agonists linked to calcium signaling to primary cultures of cerebellar astrocytes. Astrocytes repetitively tested with the same stimulus responded with global signals intermittently, indicating that each stimulus had a defined probability for triggering a response. The response probability varied between agonists, increased with agonist concentration, and could be positively and negatively modulated by crosstalk with other signaling pathways. To better understand the processes determining the evolution of a global signal, we recorded subcellular calcium "puffs" throughout the whole cell during stimulation. The key requirement for puffs to trigger a global calcium wave following receptor activation appeared to be the synchronous release of calcium from three or more sites, rather than an increasing calcium load accumulating in the cytosol due to increased puff size, amplitude, or frequency. These results suggest that the concentration of transient stimuli will be encoded into a probability of generating a global calcium response, determined by the likelihood of synchronous release from multiple subcellular sites. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Glutamate metabolism in the brain focusing on astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Arne; Scafidi, Susanna; Bak, Lasse Kristoffer

    2014-01-01

    , as well as in nitrogen trafficking and ammonia homeostasis in brain. The anatomical specialization of astrocytic endfeet enables these cells to rapidly and efficiently remove neurotransmitters from the synaptic cleft to maintain homeostasis, and to provide glutamine to replenish neurotransmitter pools...

  5. Astrocytes and extracellular matrix in extrasynaptic volume transmission

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vargová, Lýdia; Syková, Eva

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 369, č. 1654 (2014) ISSN 0962-8436 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-11867S; GA ČR(CZ) GBP304/12/G069 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : extracellular space * diffusion * astrocytes Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 7.055, year: 2014

  6. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Nan; Yao, Fang; Li, Ke; Zhang, Lanlan; Yin, Guo; Du, Mingjun; Wu, Bingyi

    2017-01-01

    Fisetin (3,3′,4′,7-tetrahydroxyflavone) is a plant flavonol found in fruits and vegetables that has been reported to inhibit migration and proliferation in several types of cancer. Reactive astrogliosis involves astrocyte migration and proliferation, and contributes to the formation of glial scars in central nervous system (CNS) disorders. However, the effect of fisetin on the migration and proliferation of astrocytes remains unclear. In this study, we found that fisetin inhibited astrocyte migration in a scratch-wound assay and diminished the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK; Tyr576/577 and paxillin (Tyr118). It also suppressed cell proliferation, as indicated by the decreased number of 5-ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine (EdU)-positive cells, induced cell cycle arrest in the G1 phase, reduced the percentage of cells in the G2 and S phase (as measured by flow cytometry), and decreased cyclin D1 expression, but had no effect on apoptosis. Fisetin also decreased the phosphorylation levels of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk)1/2, but had no effect on the phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). These results indicate that fisetin inhibits aggressive cell phenotypes by suppressing cell migration and proliferation via the Akt/Erk signaling pathway. Fisetin may thus have potential for use as a therapeutic strategy targeting reactive astrocytes, which may lead to the inhibition of glial scar formation in vitro. PMID:28204814

  7. Glucose Tightly Controls Morphological and Functional Properties of Astrocytes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Lee, Ch. Y.; Dallérac, G.; Ezan, P.; Anděrová, Miroslava; Rouach, N.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 85 (2016) ISSN 1663-4365 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP304/12/G069 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : hippocampus * astrocytes * neuroglial interactions Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 4.504, year: 2016

  8. Astrocytes are central in the pathomechanisms of vanishing white matter

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dooves, Stephanie; Bugiani, Marianna; Postma, Nienke L.; Polder, Emiel; Land, Niels; Horan, Stephen T.; van Deijk, Anne-Lieke F.; van de Kreeke, Aleid; Jacobs, Gerbren; Vuong, Caroline; Klooster, Jan; Kamermans, Maarten; Wortel, Joke; Loos, Maarten; Wisse, Lisanne E.; Scheper, Gert C.; Abbink, Truus E. M.; Heine, Vivi M.; van der Knaap, Marjo S.

    2016-01-01

    Vanishing white matter (VWM) is a fatal leukodystrophy that is caused by mutations in genes encoding subunits of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2B (eIF2B). Disease onset and severity are codetermined by genotype. White matter astrocytes and oligodendrocytes are almost exclusively affected;

  9. The indispensable roles of microglia and astrocytes during brain development

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reemst, Kitty; Noctor, Stephen C.; Lucassen, Paul J.; Hol, Elly M.

    2016-01-01

    Glia are essential for brain functioning during development and in the adult brain. Here, we discuss the various roles of both microglia and astrocytes, and their interactions during brain development. Although both cells are fundamentally different in origin and function, they often affect the same

  10. Glycogen synthase kinase-3 regulates inflammatory tolerance in astrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beurel, Eléonore; Jope, Richard S.

    2010-01-01

    Inflammatory tolerance is the down-regulation of inflammation upon repeated stimuli, which is well-established to occur in peripheral immune cells. However, less is known about inflammatory tolerance in the brain although it may provide an important protective mechanism from detrimental consequences of prolonged inflammation, which appears to occur in many psychiatric and neurodegenerative conditions. Array analysis of 308 inflammatory molecules produced by mouse primary astrocytes after two sequential stimulations with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) distinguished three classes, tolerant, sensitized and unaltered groups. For many of these inflammatory molecules, inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3) increased tolerance and reduced sensitization. Focusing on LPS-tolerance in interleukin-6 (IL-6) production, we found that microglia exhibited a strong tolerance response that matched that of macrophages, whereas astrocytes exhibited only partial tolerance. The astrocyte semi-tolerance was found to be regulated by GSK3. GSK3 inhibitors or knocking down GSK3 levels promoted LPS-tolerance and astrocytes expressing constitutively active GSK3 did not develop LPS-tolerance. These findings identify the critical role of GSK3 in counteracting IL-6 inflammatory tolerance in cells of the CNS, supporting the therapeutic potential of GSK3 inhibitors to reduce neuroinflammation by promoting tolerance. PMID:20553816

  11. Acetazolamide Mitigates Astrocyte Cellular Edema Following Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sturdivant, Nasya M.; Smith, Sean G.; Ali, Syed F.; Wolchok, Jeffrey C.; Balachandran, Kartik

    2016-09-01

    Non-penetrating or mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is commonly experienced in accidents, the battlefield and in full-contact sports. Astrocyte cellular edema is one of the major factors that leads to high morbidity post-mTBI. Various studies have reported an upregulation of aquaporin-4 (AQP4), a water channel protein, following brain injury. AZA is an antiepileptic drug that has been shown to inhibit AQP4 expression and in this study we investigate the drug as a therapeutic to mitigate the extent of mTBI induced cellular edema. We hypothesized that mTBI-mediated astrocyte dysfunction, initiated by increased intracellular volume, could be reduced when treated with AZA. We tested our hypothesis in a three-dimensional in vitro astrocyte model of mTBI. Samples were subject to no stretch (control) or one high-speed stretch (mTBI) injury. AQP4 expression was significantly increased 24 hours after mTBI. mTBI resulted in a significant increase in the cell swelling within 30 min of mTBI, which was significantly reduced in the presence of AZA. Cell death and expression of S100B was significantly reduced when AZA was added shortly before mTBI stretch. Overall, our data point to occurrence of astrocyte swelling immediately following mTBI, and AZA as a promising treatment to mitigate downstream cellular mortality.

  12. Glutamine Synthetase Deficiency in Murine Astrocytes Results in Neonatal Death

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    He, Youji; Hakvoort, Theodorus B. M.; Vermeulen, Jacqueline L. M.; Labruyère, Wilhelmina T.; de Waart, D. Rudi; van der Hel, W. Saskia; Ruijter, Jan M.; Uylings, Harry B. M.; Lamers, Wouter H.

    2010-01-01

    Glutamine synthetase (GS) is a key enzyme in the "glutamine-glutamate cycle" between astrocytes and neurons, but its function in vivo was thus far tested only pharmacologically. Crossing GS(fl/lacZ) or GS(fl/f)l mice with hGFAP-Cre mice resulted in prenatal excision of the GS(fl) allele in

  13. The psychostimulant modafinil enhances gap junctional communication in cortical astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xinhe; Petit, Jean-Marie; Ezan, Pascal; Gyger, Joël; Magistretti, Pierre; Giaume, Christian

    2013-12-01

    Sleep-wake cycle is characterized by changes in neuronal network activity. However, for the last decade there is increasing evidence that neuroglial interaction may play a role in the modulation of sleep homeostasis and that astrocytes have a critical impact in this process. Interestingly, astrocytes are organized into communicating networks based on their high expression of connexins, which are the molecular constituents of gap junction channels. Thus, neuroglial interactions should also be considered as the result of the interplay between neuronal and astroglial networks. Here, we investigate the effect of modafinil, a wakefulness-promoting agent, on astrocyte gap junctional communication. We report that in the cortex modafinil injection increases the expression of mRNA and protein of connexin 30 but not those of connexin 43, the other major astroglial connexin. These increases are correlated with an enhancement of intercellular dye coupling in cortical astrocytes, which is abolished when neuronal activity is silenced by tetrodotoxin. Moreover, gamma-hydroxybutyric acid, which at a millimolar concentration induces sleep, has an opposite effect on astroglial gap junctions in an activity-independent manner. These results support the proposition that astroglia may play an important role in complex physiological brain functions, such as sleep regulation, and that neuroglial networking interaction is modified during sleep-wake cycle. This article is part of the Special Issue Section entitled 'Current Pharmacology of Gap Junction Channels and Hemichannels'. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Connexin-based intercellular communication and astrocyte heterogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theis, Martin; Giaume, Christian

    2012-12-03

    This review gives an overview of the current knowledge on connexin-mediated communication in astrocytes, covering gap junction and hemichannel functions mediated by connexins. Astroglia is the main brain cell type that expresses the largest amount of connexin and exhibits high level of gap junctional communication compared to neurons and oligodendrocytes. However, in certain developmental and regional situations, astrocytes are also coupled with oligodendrocytes and neurons. This heterotypic coupling is infrequent and minor in terms of extent of the coupling area, which does not mean that it is not important in terms of cell interaction. Here, we present an update on heterogeneity of connexin expression and function at the molecular, subcellular, cellular and networking levels. Interestingly, while astrocytes were initially considered as a homogenous population, there is now increasing evidence for morphological, developmental, molecular and physiological heterogeneity of astrocytes. Consequently, the specificity of gap junction channel- and hemichannel-mediated communication, which tends to synchronize cell populations, is also a parameter to take into account when neuroglial interactions are investigated. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Electrical Synapses. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Dynamic volume changes in astrocytes are an intrinsic phenomenon mediated by bicarbonate ion flux.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clare M Florence

    Full Text Available Astrocytes, the major type of non-neuronal cells in the brain, play an important functional role in extracellular potassium ([K(+](o and pH homeostasis. Pathological brain states that result in [K(+](o and pH dysregulation have been shown to cause astrocyte swelling. However, whether astrocyte volume changes occur under physiological conditions is not known. In this study we used two-photon imaging to visualize real-time astrocyte volume changes in the stratum radiatum of the hippocampus CA1 region. Astrocytes were observed to swell by 19.0±0.9% in response to a small physiological increase in the concentration of [K(+](o (3 mM. Astrocyte swelling was mediated by the influx of bicarbonate (HCO(3- ions as swelling was significantly decreased when the influx of HCO(3- was reduced. We found: 1 in HCO(3- free extracellular solution astrocytes swelled by 5.4±0.7%, 2 when the activity of the sodium-bicarbonate cotransporter (NBC was blocked the astrocytes swelled by 8.3±0.7%, and 3 in the presence of an extracellular carbonic anhydrase (CA inhibitor astrocytes swelled by 11.4±0.6%. Because a significant HCO(3- efflux is known to occur through the γ-amino-butyric acid (GABA channel, we performed a series of experiments to determine if astrocytes were capable of HCO(3- mediated volume shrinkage with GABA channel activation. Astrocytes were found to shrink -7.7±0.5% of control in response to the GABA(A channel agonist muscimol. Astrocyte shrinkage from GABA(A channel activation was significantly decreased to -5.0±0.6% of control in the presence of the membrane-permeant CA inhibitor acetazolamide (ACTZ. These dynamic astrocyte volume changes may represent a previously unappreciated yet fundamental mechanism by which astrocytes regulate physiological brain functioning.

  16. Identifying the receptor subtype selectivity of retinoid X and retinoic acid receptors via quantum mechanics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuji, Motonori; Shudo, Koichi; Kagechika, Hiroyuki

    2017-03-01

    Understanding and identifying the receptor subtype selectivity of a ligand is an important issue in the field of drug discovery. Using a combination of classical molecular mechanics and quantum mechanical calculations, this report assesses the receptor subtype selectivity for the human retinoid X receptor (hRXR) and retinoic acid receptor (hRAR) ligand-binding domains (LBDs) complexed with retinoid ligands. The calculated energies show good correlation with the experimentally reported binding affinities. The technique proposed here is a promising method as it reveals the origin of the receptor subtype selectivity of selective ligands.

  17. Human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes self-arrange with areas of different subtypes during differentiation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vestergaard, Maj Linea; Grubb, Søren; Rasmussen, Karen Koefoed

    2017-01-01

    to determine action potentials (AP) further revealed spatial organization of intra-clustal CM subtypes (i.e complex clusters). Nodal-, atrial- and ventricular-like APs morphologies were detected within distinct regions of complex clusters. The ability of different CM subtypes to self-organize was documented....... Finally, the β-III tubulin specific localised expression is suggested to represent a new marker for nodal CMs. This study expands our understanding of CM specialization and intra-clustal CM subtype organization, improving the foundation for studying regulatory pathways for spatial and temporal CM...

  18. Functions of flavonoids in the central nervous system: Astrocytes as targets for natural compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matias, Isadora; Buosi, Andrea Schmidt; Gomes, Flávia Carvalho Alcantara

    2016-05-01

    In the last decade, there have been major advances in the understanding of the role of glial cells as key elements in the formation, maintenance and refinement of synapses. Recently, the discovery of natural compounds capable of modulating nervous system function has revealed new perspectives on the restoration of the injured brain. Among these compounds, flavonoids stand out as molecules easily obtainable in the diet that have remarkable effects on cognitive performance and behavior. Nevertheless, little is known about the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the actions of flavonoids in the nervous system. The present review presents recent advances in the effects of natural compounds, particularly flavonoids, in the nervous system. We shed light on astrocytes as targets of flavonoids and discuss how this interaction might contribute to the effects of flavonoids on neuronal survival, differentiation and function. Finally, we discuss how the effects of flavonoids on astrocytes might contribute to the development of alternative therapeutic approaches to the treatment of neural diseases. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Astrocyte uncoupling as a cause of human temporal lobe epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bedner, Peter; Dupper, Alexander; Hüttmann, Kerstin; Müller, Julia; Herde, Michel K; Dublin, Pavel; Deshpande, Tushar; Schramm, Johannes; Häussler, Ute; Haas, Carola A; Henneberger, Christian; Theis, Martin; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2015-05-01

    Glial cells are now recognized as active communication partners in the central nervous system, and this new perspective has rekindled the question of their role in pathology. In the present study we analysed functional properties of astrocytes in hippocampal specimens from patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy without (n = 44) and with sclerosis (n = 75) combining patch clamp recording, K(+) concentration analysis, electroencephalography/video-monitoring, and fate mapping analysis. We found that the hippocampus of patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis is completely devoid of bona fide astrocytes and gap junction coupling, whereas coupled astrocytes were abundantly present in non-sclerotic specimens. To decide whether these glial changes represent cause or effect of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, we developed a mouse model that reproduced key features of human mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis. In this model, uncoupling impaired K(+) buffering and temporally preceded apoptotic neuronal death and the generation of spontaneous seizures. Uncoupling was induced through intraperitoneal injection of lipopolysaccharide, prevented in Toll-like receptor4 knockout mice and reproduced in situ through acute cytokine or lipopolysaccharide incubation. Fate mapping confirmed that in the course of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, astrocytes acquire an atypical functional phenotype and lose coupling. These data suggest that astrocyte dysfunction might be a prime cause of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis and identify novel targets for anti-epileptogenic therapeutic intervention. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Astrocytic mitochondrial membrane hyperpolarization following extended oxygen and glucose deprivation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrej Korenić

    Full Text Available Astrocytes can tolerate longer periods of oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD as compared to neurons. The reasons for this reduced vulnerability are not well understood. Particularly, changes in mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψ(m in astrocytes, an indicator of the cellular redox state, have not been investigated during reperfusion after extended OGD exposure. Here, we subjected primary mouse astrocytes to glucose deprivation (GD, OGD and combinations of both conditions varying in duration and sequence. Changes in Δψ(m, visualized by change in the fluorescence of JC-1, were investigated within one hour after reconstitution of oxygen and glucose supply, intended to model in vivo reperfusion. In all experiments, astrocytes showed resilience to extended periods of OGD, which had little effect on Δψ(m during reperfusion, whereas GD caused a robust Δψ(m negativation. In case no Δψ(m negativation was observed after OGD, subsequent chemical oxygen deprivation (OD induced by sodium azide caused depolarization, which, however, was significantly delayed as compared to normoxic group. When GD preceded OD for 12 h, Δψ(m hyperpolarization was induced by both GD and subsequent OD, but significant interaction between these conditions was not detected. However, when GD was extended to 48 h preceding OGD, hyperpolarization enhanced during reperfusion. This implicates synergistic effects of both conditions in that sequence. These findings provide novel information regarding the role of the two main substrates of electron transport chain (glucose and oxygen and their hyperpolarizing effect on Δψ(m during substrate deprivation, thus shedding new light on mechanisms of astrocyte resilience to prolonged ischemic injury.

  1. Effects of Ranolazine on Astrocytes and Neurons in Primary Culture.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Aldasoro

    Full Text Available Ranolazine (Rn is an antianginal agent used for the treatment of chronic angina pectoris when angina is not adequately controlled by other drugs. Rn also acts in the central nervous system and it has been proposed for the treatment of pain and epileptic disorders. Under the hypothesis that ranolazine could act as a neuroprotective drug, we studied its effects on astrocytes and neurons in primary culture. We incubated rat astrocytes and neurons in primary cultures for 24 hours with Rn (10-7, 10-6 and 10-5 M. Cell viability and proliferation were measured using trypan blue exclusion assay, MTT conversion assay and LDH release assay. Apoptosis was determined by Caspase 3 activity assay. The effects of Rn on pro-inflammatory mediators IL-β and TNF-α was determined by ELISA technique, and protein expression levels of Smac/Diablo, PPAR-γ, Mn-SOD and Cu/Zn-SOD by western blot technique. In cultured astrocytes, Rn significantly increased cell viability and proliferation at any concentration tested, and decreased LDH leakage, Smac/Diablo expression and Caspase 3 activity indicating less cell death. Rn also increased anti-inflammatory PPAR-γ protein expression and reduced pro-inflammatory proteins IL-1 β and TNFα levels. Furthermore, antioxidant proteins Cu/Zn-SOD and Mn-SOD significantly increased after Rn addition in cultured astrocytes. Conversely, Rn did not exert any effect on cultured neurons. In conclusion, Rn could act as a neuroprotective drug in the central nervous system by promoting astrocyte viability, preventing necrosis and apoptosis, inhibiting inflammatory phenomena and inducing anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agents.

  2. Age and Environment Influences on Mouse Prion Disease Progression: Behavioral Changes and Morphometry and Stereology of Hippocampal Astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Bento-Torres

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Because enriched environment (EE and exercise increase and aging decreases immune response, we hypothesized that environmental enrichment and aging will, respectively, delay and increase prion disease progression. Mice dorsal striatum received bilateral stereotaxic intracerebral injections of normal or ME7 prion infected mouse brain homogenates. After behavior analysis, animals were euthanized and their brains processed for astrocyte GFAP immunolabeling. Our analysis related to the environmental influence are limited to young adult mice, whereas age influence refers to aged mice raised on standard cages. Burrowing activity began to reduce in ME7-SE two weeks before ME7-EE, while no changes were apparent in ME7 aged mice (ME7-A. Object placement recognition was impaired in ME7-SE, NBH-A, and ME7-A but normal in all other groups. Object identity recognition was impaired in ME7-A. Cluster analysis revealed two morphological families of astrocytes in NBH-SE animals, three in NBH-A and ME7-A, and four in NBH-EE, ME7-SE, and ME7-EE. As compared with control groups, astrocytes from DG and CA3 prion-diseased animals show significant numerical and morphological differences and environmental enrichment did not reverse these changes but induced different morphological changes in GFAP+ hippocampal astroglia. We suggest that environmental enrichment and aging delayed hippocampal-dependent behavioral and neuropathological signs of disease progression.

  3. JNK-induced MCP-1 production in spinal cord astrocytes contributes to central sensitization and neuropathic pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Yong-Jing; Zhang, Ling; Samad, Omar Abdel; Suter, Marc R; Yasuhiko, Kawasaki; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Park, Jong-Yeon; Lind, Anne-Li; Ma, Qiufu; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2009-04-01

    Our previous study showed that activation of c-jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) in spinal astrocytes plays an important role in neuropathic pain sensitization. We further investigated how JNK regulates neuropathic pain. In cultured astrocytes, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) transiently activated JNK via TNF receptor-1. Cytokine array indicated that the chemokine CCL2/MCP-1 (monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) was strongly induced by the TNF-alpha/JNK pathway. MCP-1 upregulation by TNF-alpha was dose dependently inhibited by the JNK inhibitors SP600125 (anthra[1,9-cd]pyrazol-6(2H)-one) and D-JNKI-1. Spinal injection of TNF-alpha produced JNK-dependent pain hypersensitivity and MCP-1 upregulation in the spinal cord. Furthermore, spinal nerve ligation (SNL) induced persistent neuropathic pain and MCP-1 upregulation in the spinal cord, and both were suppressed by D-JNKI-1. Remarkably, MCP-1 was primarily induced in spinal cord astrocytes after SNL. Spinal administration of MCP-1 neutralizing antibody attenuated neuropathic pain. Conversely, spinal application of MCP-1 induced heat hyperalgesia and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase in superficial spinal cord dorsal horn neurons, indicative of central sensitization (hyperactivity of dorsal horn neurons). Patch-clamp recordings in lamina II neurons of isolated spinal cord slices showed that MCP-1 not only enhanced spontaneous EPSCs but also potentiated NMDA- and AMPA-induced currents. Finally, the MCP-1 receptor CCR2 was expressed in neurons and some non-neuronal cells in the spinal cord. Together, we have revealed a previously unknown mechanism of MCP-1 induction and action. MCP-1 induction in astrocytes after JNK activation contributes to central sensitization and neuropathic pain facilitation by enhancing excitatory synaptic transmission. Inhibition of the JNK/MCP-1 pathway may provide a new therapy for neuropathic pain management.

  4. Sleep and daytime function in adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: subtype differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Sun Young Rosalia; Jain, Umesh Ravi; Shapiro, Colin Michael

    2013-07-01

    Although sleep disorders have been reported to affect more than half of adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the association between sleep and ADHD is poorly understood. The aims of our study were to investigate sleep-related variables in adults with ADHD and to assess if any differences exist between ADHD of the predominantly inattentive (ADHD-I) and combined (ADHD-C) subtypes. We used the Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS), the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), and the fatigue severity scale (FSS) to collect data on daytime sleepiness, sleep quality, and fatigue in 126 subjects (45 ADHD-I and 81 ADHD-C subjects). Approximately 85% of subjects reported excessive daytime sleepiness or poor sleep quality. The most common sleep concerns were initial insomnia, interrupted sleep, and feeling too hot. When examining ADHD subtype differences, ADHD-I subtypes reported poorer sleep quality and more fatigue than ADHD-C subtypes. Partial correlation analyses revealed that interrelationships between sleep quality, daytime sleepiness, and fatigue differ between ADHD subtypes; in ADHD-I subtypes fatigue was associated with sleep quality, while in the ADHD-C subtypes fatigue was associated with both sleep quality and daytime sleepiness. There also appears to be a subtype×gender interaction that affects the perception of fatigue, as subjective fatigue was markedly higher in ADHD-I women than in ADHD-C women. Altogether our data indicate that the interplay of variables associated with daytime function and sleep varies between ADHD subtypes. This finding may have considerable relevance in the management and pathophysiologic understanding of ADHD, and thus lead to tailored treatments for ADHD subtypes. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Origin and dynamics of HIV-1 subtype C infection in India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chengli Shen

    Full Text Available To investigate the geographical origin and evolution dynamics of HIV-1 subtype C infection in India.Ninety HIV-1 subtype C env gp120 subtype C sequences from India were compared with 312 env gp120 reference subtype C sequences from 27 different countries obtained from Los Alamos HIV database. All the HIV-1 subtype C env gp120 sequences from India were used for the geographical origin analysis and 61 subtype C env gp120 sequences with known sampling year (from 1991 to 2008 were employed to determine the origin of HIV infection in India.Phylogenetic analysis of HIV-1 env sequences was used to investigate the geographical origin and tMRCA of Indian HIV-1 subtype C. Evolutionary parameters including origin date and demographic growth patterns of Indian subtype C were estimated using a Bayesian coalescent-based approach under relaxed molecular clock models.The majority of the analyzed Indian and South African HIV-1 subtype C sequences formed a single monophyletic cluster. The most recent common ancestor date was calculated to be 1975.56 (95% HPD, 1968.78-1981.52. Reconstruction of the effective population size revealed three phases of epidemic growth: an initial slow growth, followed by exponential growth, and then a plateau phase approaching present time. Stabilization of the epidemic growth phase correlated with the foundation of National AIDS Control Organization in India.Indian subtype C originated from a single South African lineage in the middle of 1970s. The current study emphasizes not only the utility of HIV-1 sequence data for epidemiological studies but more notably highlights the effectiveness of community or government intervention strategies in controlling the trend of the epidemic.

  6. T cells' immunological synapses induce polarization of brain astrocytes in vivo and in vitro: a novel astrocyte response mechanism to cellular injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barcia, Carlos; Sanderson, Nicholas S R; Barrett, Robert J; Wawrowsky, Kolja; Kroeger, Kurt M; Puntel, Mariana; Liu, Chunyan; Castro, Maria G; Lowenstein, Pedro R

    2008-08-20

    Astrocytes usually respond to trauma, stroke, or neurodegeneration by undergoing cellular hypertrophy, yet, their response to a specific immune attack by T cells is poorly understood. Effector T cells establish specific contacts with target cells, known as immunological synapses, during clearance of virally infected cells from the brain. Immunological synapses mediate intercellular communication between T cells and target cells, both in vitro and in vivo. How target virally infected astrocytes respond to the formation of immunological synapses established by effector T cells is unknown. Herein we demonstrate that, as a consequence of T cell attack, infected astrocytes undergo dramatic morphological changes. From normally multipolar cells, they become unipolar, extending a major protrusion towards the immunological synapse formed by the effector T cells, and withdrawing most of their finer processes. Thus, target astrocytes become polarized towards the contacting T cells. The MTOC, the organizer of cell polarity, is localized to the base of the protrusion, and Golgi stacks are distributed throughout the protrusion, reaching distally towards the immunological synapse. Thus, rather than causing astrocyte hypertrophy, antiviral T cells cause a major structural reorganization of target virally infected astrocytes. Astrocyte polarization, as opposed to hypertrophy, in response to T cell attack may be due to T cells providing a very focused attack, and thus, astrocytes responding in a polarized manner. A similar polarization of Golgi stacks towards contacting T cells was also detected using an in vitro allogeneic model. Thus, different T cells are able to induce polarization of target astrocytes. Polarization of target astrocytes in response to immunological synapses may play an important role in regulating the outcome of the response of astrocytes to attacking effector T cells, whether during antiviral (e.g. infected during HIV, HTLV-1, HSV-1 or LCMV infection), anti

  7. T cells' immunological synapses induce polarization of brain astrocytes in vivo and in vitro: a novel astrocyte response mechanism to cellular injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Barcia

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes usually respond to trauma, stroke, or neurodegeneration by undergoing cellular hypertrophy, yet, their response to a specific immune attack by T cells is poorly understood. Effector T cells establish specific contacts with target cells, known as immunological synapses, during clearance of virally infected cells from the brain. Immunological synapses mediate intercellular communication between T cells and target cells, both in vitro and in vivo. How target virally infected astrocytes respond to the formation of immunological synapses established by effector T cells is unknown.Herein we demonstrate that, as a consequence of T cell attack, infected astrocytes undergo dramatic morphological changes. From normally multipolar cells, they become unipolar, extending a major protrusion towards the immunological synapse formed by the effector T cells, and withdrawing most of their finer processes. Thus, target astrocytes become polarized towards the contacting T cells. The MTOC, the organizer of cell polarity, is localized to the base of the protrusion, and Golgi stacks are distributed throughout the protrusion, reaching distally towards the immunological synapse. Thus, rather than causing astrocyte hypertrophy, antiviral T cells cause a major structural reorganization of target virally infected astrocytes.Astrocyte polarization, as opposed to hypertrophy, in response to T cell attack may be due to T cells providing a very focused attack, and thus, astrocytes responding in a polarized manner. A similar polarization of Golgi stacks towards contacting T cells was also detected using an in vitro allogeneic model. Thus, different T cells are able to induce polarization of target astrocytes. Polarization of target astrocytes in response to immunological synapses may play an important role in regulating the outcome of the response of astrocytes to attacking effector T cells, whether during antiviral (e.g. infected during HIV, HTLV-1, HSV-1 or LCMV

  8. Gene specific actions of thyroid hormone receptor subtypes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean Z Lin

    Full Text Available There are two homologous thyroid hormone (TH receptors (TRs α and β, which are members of the nuclear hormone receptor (NR family. While TRs regulate different processes in vivo and other highly related NRs regulate distinct gene sets, initial studies of TR action revealed near complete overlaps in their actions at the level of individual genes. Here, we assessed the extent that TRα and TRβ differ in target gene regulation by comparing effects of equal levels of stably expressed exogenous TRs +/- T(3 in two cell backgrounds (HepG2 and HeLa. We find that hundreds of genes respond to T(3 or to unliganded TRs in both cell types, but were not able to detect verifiable examples of completely TR subtype-specific gene regulation. TR actions are, however, far from identical and we detect TR subtype-specific effects on global T(3 response kinetics in HepG2 cells and many examples of TR subtype specificity at the level of individual genes, including effects on magnitude of response to TR +/- T(3, TR regulation patterns and T(3 dose response. Cycloheximide (CHX treatment confirms that at least some differential effects involve verifiable direct TR target genes. TR subtype/gene-specific effects emerge in the context of widespread variation in target gene response and we suggest that gene-selective effects on mechanism of TR action highlight differences in TR subtype function that emerge in the environment of specific genes. We propose that differential TR actions could influence physiologic and pharmacologic responses to THs and selective TR modulators (STRMs.

  9. Transsexual subtypes : Clinical and theoretical significance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smith, YLS; van Goozen, SHM; Kuiper, AJ; Cohen-Kettenis, PT

    2005-01-01

    The present study was designed to investigate whether transsexuals can be validly subdivided into subtypes on the basis of sexual orientation, and whether differences between subtypes of transsexuals are similar for male-to-female (ME) and female-to-male transsexuals (FMs). Within a large

  10. Regulation of neurotrophic factors and energy metabolism by antidepressants in astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Jean Luc; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Allaman, Igor

    2013-01-01

    There is growing evidence that astrocytes are involved in the neuropathology of major depression. In particular, decreases in glial cell density observed in the cerebral cortex of individuals with major depressive disorder are accompanied by a reduction of several astrocytic markers suggesting that astrocyte dysfunction may contribute to the pathophysiology of major depression. In rodents, glial loss in the prefrontal cortex is sufficient to induce depressive-like behaviors and antidepressant treatment prevents the stress-induced reduction of astrocyte number in the hippocampus. Collectively, these data support the existence of a link between astrocyte loss or dysfunction, depressive-like behavior and antidepressant treatment. Astrocytes are increasingly recognized to play important roles in neuronal development, neurotransmission, synaptic plasticity and maintenance of brain homeostasis. It is also well established that astrocytes provide trophic, structural, and metabolic support to neurons. In this article, we review evidence that antidepressants regulate energy metabolism and neurotrophic factor expression with particular emphasis on studies in astrocytes. These observations support a role for astrocytes as new targets for antidepressants. The contribution of changes in astrocyte glucose metabolism and neurotrophic factor expression to the therapeutic effects of antidepressants remains to be established. © 2013 Bentham Science Publishers.

  11. Regulation of neurotrophic factors and energy metabolism by antidepressants in astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Martin, Jean Luc

    2013-09-01

    There is growing evidence that astrocytes are involved in the neuropathology of major depression. In particular, decreases in glial cell density observed in the cerebral cortex of individuals with major depressive disorder are accompanied by a reduction of several astrocytic markers suggesting that astrocyte dysfunction may contribute to the pathophysiology of major depression. In rodents, glial loss in the prefrontal cortex is sufficient to induce depressive-like behaviors and antidepressant treatment prevents the stress-induced reduction of astrocyte number in the hippocampus. Collectively, these data support the existence of a link between astrocyte loss or dysfunction, depressive-like behavior and antidepressant treatment. Astrocytes are increasingly recognized to play important roles in neuronal development, neurotransmission, synaptic plasticity and maintenance of brain homeostasis. It is also well established that astrocytes provide trophic, structural, and metabolic support to neurons. In this article, we review evidence that antidepressants regulate energy metabolism and neurotrophic factor expression with particular emphasis on studies in astrocytes. These observations support a role for astrocytes as new targets for antidepressants. The contribution of changes in astrocyte glucose metabolism and neurotrophic factor expression to the therapeutic effects of antidepressants remains to be established. © 2013 Bentham Science Publishers.

  12. Astrocyte-secreted thrombospondin-1 modulates synapse and spine defects in the fragile X mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Connie; Lau, Sally K M; Doering, Laurie C

    2016-08-02

    Astrocytes are key participants in various aspects of brain development and function, many of which are executed via secreted proteins. Defects in astrocyte signaling are implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by abnormal neural circuitry such as Fragile X syndrome (FXS). In animal models of FXS, the loss in expression of the Fragile X mental retardation 1 protein (FMRP) from astrocytes is associated with delayed dendrite maturation and improper synapse formation; however, the effect of astrocyte-derived factors on the development of neurons is not known. Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) is an important astrocyte-secreted protein that is involved in the regulation of spine development and synaptogenesis. In this study, we found that cultured astrocytes isolated from an Fmr1 knockout (Fmr1 KO) mouse model of FXS displayed a significant decrease in TSP-1 protein expression compared to the wildtype (WT) astrocytes. Correspondingly, Fmr1 KO hippocampal neurons exhibited morphological deficits in dendritic spines and alterations in excitatory synapse formation following long-term culture. All spine and synaptic abnormalities were prevented in the presence of either astrocyte-conditioned media or a feeder layer derived from FMRP-expressing astrocytes, or following the application of exogenous TSP-1. Importantly, this work demonstrates the integral role of astrocyte-secreted signals in the establishment of neuronal communication and identifies soluble TSP-1 as a potential therapeutic target for Fragile X syndrome.

  13. Correlation Between Ki-67 Index, World Health Organization Grade and Patient Survival in Glial Tumors With Astrocytic Differentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dzhenkov, Deyan L; Kitanova, Martina; Donev, Ivan S; Ghenev, Peter

    2017-01-01

    Background Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is a class IV astrocytic tumor, the most malignant of the four groups of World Health Organization (WHO) tumors with astrocytic differentiation. Aim The aim of this study was to estab­lish whether a correlation exists between the Ki-67 index of tumors with astrocytic differentiation, WHO grade, and patient survival. Materials and methods A retrospective non-clinical approach to patient selection was chosen for the aim of the study. A total of 47 patients diagnosed and treated for CNS tumors with astrocytic differentiation in the St. Marina University Hospital, Varna, Bulgaria, from September 2012 to July 2016 were retrospectively included into the study cohort. The cases were tested for their immunohistochemistry (IHC) reaction with Ki-67 after their original Hematoxylin and Eosin and IHC slides were reviewed by a single author and blind coded. The Ki-67 positivity index of the nuclei was estimated after digitalization of the slides and calculated by the ImmunoRatio automated count­ing tool. The individual Ki-67 index and patient survival of each case were statistically compared. Results The histopathological groups, after the blind Ki-67 index automated calculation was carried out, revealed no WHO grade I, two WHO grade II samples, four WHO grade III samples and 41 WHO grade IV cases, and these were included in the analysis. The two samples of WHO grade II astrocytic tumors had a mean Ki-67 index of 25%; however, they comprised tumors with an individual index of 43% and 7%, both individual values with a highly unlikely index for this group. The four samples of WHO grade III had a mean Ki-67 index of 4%, standard deviation ±2.16 (p>0.05), with the lowest index being 1% and the highest one being 6%. Both WHO grade II and III did not include enough samples to allow for a proper statistical analysis of patient survival. The 41 GBM cases had a mean Ki-67 index of 17.34%, standard deviation ±10.79 (p>0

  14. Decreased STAT3 Phosphorylation Mediates Cell Swelling in Ammonia-Treated Astrocyte Cultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arumugam R. Jayakumar

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Brain edema, due largely to astrocyte swelling, and the subsequent increase in intracranial pressure and brain herniation, are major complications of acute liver failure (ALF. Elevated level of brain ammonia has been strongly implicated in the development of astrocyte swelling associated with ALF. The means by which ammonia brings about astrocyte swelling, however, is incompletely understood. Recently, oxidative/nitrosative stress and associated signaling events, including activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs, as well as activation of the transcription factor, nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB, have been implicated in the mechanism of ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling. Since these signaling events are known to be regulated by the transcription factor, signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3, we examined the state of STAT3 activation in ammonia-treated cultured astrocytes, and determined whether altered STAT3 activation and/or protein expression contribute to the ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling. STAT3 was found to be dephosphorylated (inactivated at Tyrosine705 in ammonia-treated cultured astrocytes. Total STAT3 protein level was also reduced in ammonia-treated astrocytes. We also found a significant increase in protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor type-1 (PTPRT-1 protein expression in ammonia-treated cultured astrocytes, and that inhibition of PTPRT-1 enhanced the phosphorylation of STAT3 after ammonia treatment. Additionally, exposure of cultured astrocytes to inhibitors of protein tyrosine phosphatases diminished the ammonia-induced cell swelling, while cultured astrocytes over-expressing STAT3 showed a reduction in the astrocyte swelling induced by ammonia. Collectively, these studies strongly suggest that inactivation of STAT3 represents a critical event in the mechanism of the astrocyte swelling associated with acute liver failure.

  15. Evolution of an Astrocytic Hamartoma of the Optic Nerve Head in a Patient with Retinitis Pigmentosa – Photographic Documentation over 2 Years of Follow-Up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loukianou, Eleni; Kisma, Nacima; Pal, Bishwanathan

    2011-01-01

    Aim To report photographically the evolution of an astrocytic hamartoma of the left optic nerve head over a 2-year follow-up in a patient with retinitis pigmentosa. Methods A 14-year-old boy was seen in the medical retina clinic with a 3-year history of night blindness. Best corrected visual acuity was 6/18 in both eyes. Colour vision was normal in both eyes and confrontation fields showed peripheral constriction. Fundus examination revealed bone spicule pigmentary changes at the retinal mid periphery typical of retinitis pigmentosa and superficial globules at the margins of both optic nerve heads. Electrodiagnostic tests confirmed moderately severe rod cone dystrophy with macular involvement bilaterally. Results Two years later, the ocular examination was unchanged except for the appearance of the optic nerve head lesion in the left eye. There was an increase in the size of the lesion which was diagnosed as an astrocytic hamartoma. Further investigations were recommended to exclude neurofibromatosis and tuberous sclerosis. Conclusion Astrocytic hamartomas of the optic nerve head and optic nerve head drusen have both been described in patients with retinitis pigmentosa. They can be a diagnostic dilemma although drusen are more common (10%). To differentiate these two entities it is very important to document any growth during the follow-up period which is suggestive of astrocytic hamartoma rather than optic disc drusen. PMID:21347192

  16. Evolution of an Astrocytic Hamartoma of the Optic Nerve Head in a Patient with Retinitis Pigmentosa - Photographic Documentation over 2 Years of Follow-Up.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loukianou, Eleni; Kisma, Nacima; Pal, Bishwanathan

    2011-02-02

    To report photographically the evolution of an astrocytic hamartoma of the left optic nerve head over a 2-year follow-up in a patient with retinitis pigmentosa. A 14-year-old boy was seen in the medical retina clinic with a 3-year history of night blindness. Best corrected visual acuity was 6/18 in both eyes. Colour vision was normal in both eyes and confrontation fields showed peripheral constriction. Fundus examination revealed bone spicule pigmentary changes at the retinal mid periphery typical of retinitis pigmentosa and superficial globules at the margins of both optic nerve heads. Electrodiagnostic tests confirmed moderately severe rod cone dystrophy with macular involvement bilaterally. Two years later, the ocular examination was unchanged except for the appearance of the optic nerve head lesion in the left eye. There was an increase in the size of the lesion which was diagnosed as an astrocytic hamartoma. Further investigations were recommended to exclude neurofibromatosis and tuberous sclerosis. Astrocytic hamartomas of the optic nerve head and optic nerve head drusen have both been described in patients with retinitis pigmentosa. They can be a diagnostic dilemma although drusen are more common (10%). To differentiate these two entities it is very important to document any growth during the follow-up period which is suggestive of astrocytic hamartoma rather than optic disc drusen.

  17. Evolution of an Astrocytic Hamartoma of the Optic Nerve Head in a Patient with Retinitis Pigmentosa – Photographic Documentation over 2 Years of Follow-Up

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleni Loukianou

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Aim: To report photographically the evolution of an astrocytic hamartoma of the left optic nerve head over a 2-year follow-up in a patient with retinitis pigmentosa. Methods: A 14-year-old boy was seen in the medical retina clinic with a 3-year history of night blindness. Best corrected visual acuity was 6/18 in both eyes. Colour vision was normal in both eyes and confrontation fields showed peripheral constriction. Fundus examination revealed bone spicule pigmentary changes at the retinal mid periphery typical of retinitis pigmentosa and superficial globules at the margins of both optic nerve heads. Electrodiagnostic tests confirmed moderately severe rod cone dystrophy with macular involvement bilaterally. Results: Two years later, the ocular examination was unchanged except for the appearance of the optic nerve head lesion in the left eye. There was an increase in the size of the lesion which was diagnosed as an astrocytic hamartoma. Further investigations were recommended to exclude neurofibromatosis and tuberous sclerosis. Conclusion: Astrocytic hamartomas of the optic nerve head and optic nerve head drusen have both been described in patients with retinitis pigmentosa. They can be a diagnostic dilemma although drusen are more common (10%. To differentiate these two entities it is very important to document any growth during the follow-up period which is suggestive of astrocytic hamartoma rather than optic disc drusen.

  18. From the Cover: AstrocytesAre Protective Against Chlorpyrifos Developmental Neurotoxicity in Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Astrocyte-Neuron Cocultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xian; Yang, Xiangkun; Majumder, Anirban; Swetenburg, Raymond; Goodfellow, Forrest T; Bartlett, Michael G; Stice, Steven L

    2017-06-01

    Human neural progenitor cells are capable of independent, directed differentiation into astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and neurons and thus offer a potential cell source for developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) systems. Human neural progenitor-derived astrocyte-neuron cocultured at defined ratios mimic cellular heterogeneity and interaction in the central nervous system. Cytochrome P450 enzymes are expressed at a relatively high level in astrocytes and may play a critical role in the biotransformation of endogenous or exogenous compounds, including chlorpyrifos, an organophosphate insecticide that affects the central nervous system. P450 enzymes metabolize chlorpyrifos to chlorpyrifos-oxon, which is then metabolized primarily to 3, 5, 6-trichloropyridinol in addition to diethylphosphate and diethylthiophosphate. These end metabolites are less neurotoxic than chlorpyrifos and chlorpyrifos-oxon. Our objective was to identify the interactive role of astrocytes and neurons in chlorpyrifos-induced human DNT. In neuron-only cultures, chlorpyrifos inhibited neurite length, neurite number and branch points per neuron in a dose-dependent manner during a 48 h exposure, starting at 10 μM. However, in astrocyte-neuron cocultures, astrocytes protected neurons from the effects of chlorpyrifos at higher concentrations, up to and including 30 μM chlorpyrifos and endogenous astrocyte P450 enzymes effectively metabolized chlorpyrifos. The P450 inhibitor SKF525A partly negated the protective effect of astrocytes, allowing reduction in branch points with chlorpyrifos (10 μM). Thus, the scalable and defined astrocyte-neuron cocultures model that we established here has potentially identified a role for P450 enzymes in astrocytic neuroprotection against chlorpyrifos and provides a novel model for addressing DNT in a more accurate multicellular environment. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology. All rights reserved. For

  19. Biomechanical and proteomic analysis of INF- {beta}-treated astrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vergara, Daniele; Leporatti, Stefano; Maruccio, Giuseppe; Cingolani, Roberto; Rinaldi, Ross [National Nanotechnology Laboratory of CNR-INFM, ISUFI, University of Lecce, Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) Research Unit, via Arnesano, I-73100 Lecce (Italy); Martignago, Roberta; Nuccio, Franco De; Nicolardi, Giuseppe; Maffia, Michele [Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences and Technologies, University of Salento, via Monteroni, I-73100 Lecce (Italy); Bonsegna, Stefania; Santino, Angelo, E-mail: michele.maffia@unile.i, E-mail: ross.rinaldi@unile.i [Institute of Sciences of Food Production CNR, Unit of Lecce I-73100 (Italy)

    2009-11-11

    Astrocytes have a key role in the pathogenesis of several diseases including multiple sclerosis and were proposed as the designed target for immunotherapy. In this study we used atomic force microscopy (AFM) and proteomics methods to analyse and correlate the modifications induced in the viscoleastic properties of astrocytes to the changes induced in protein expression after interferon- {beta} (IFN-{beta}) treatment. Our results indicated that IFN-{beta} treatment resulted in a significant decrease in the Young's modulus, a measure of cell elasticity, in comparison with control cells. The molecular mechanisms that trigger these changes were investigated by 2DE (two-dimensional electrophoresis) and confocal analyses and confirmed by western blotting. Altered proteins were found to be involved in cytoskeleton organization and other important physiological processes.

  20. Mammalian cortical astrocytes align themselves in a physiological voltage gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borgens, R B; Shi, R; Mohr, T J; Jaeger, C B

    1994-07-01

    Astrocytes obtained from primary cultures of newborn rat cerebral cortex show a marked structural rearrangement to weak (50-500 mV/mm) applied voltage gradients. Astrocytes reorient their processes so that the cells are aligned perpendicular to the voltage gradient. At field strengths of 100 mV/mm or greater, this realignment occurs in over 90% of the cell population. Furthermore, these magnitudes of electric fields completely eliminate any parallel alignments originally observed prior to application of the voltage. Realignment usually occurs by a withdrawal, followed by an extension, of cell processes. These responses occur at voltage gradients within the physiological range that naturally exist across the neural tube during early development. We suggest the possibility that architectural arrangements of developing glia and, subsequently, neurons may be regulated by endogenous transepithelial potentials that exist across embryonic neuroepithelium.

  1. Biomechanical and proteomic analysis of INF- β-treated astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vergara, Daniele; Leporatti, Stefano; Maruccio, Giuseppe; Cingolani, Roberto; Rinaldi, Ross; Martignago, Roberta; Nuccio, Franco De; Nicolardi, Giuseppe; Maffia, Michele; Bonsegna, Stefania; Santino, Angelo

    2009-01-01

    Astrocytes have a key role in the pathogenesis of several diseases including multiple sclerosis and were proposed as the designed target for immunotherapy. In this study we used atomic force microscopy (AFM) and proteomics methods to analyse and correlate the modifications induced in the viscoleastic properties of astrocytes to the changes induced in protein expression after interferon- β (IFN-β) treatment. Our results indicated that IFN-β treatment resulted in a significant decrease in the Young's modulus, a measure of cell elasticity, in comparison with control cells. The molecular mechanisms that trigger these changes were investigated by 2DE (two-dimensional electrophoresis) and confocal analyses and confirmed by western blotting. Altered proteins were found to be involved in cytoskeleton organization and other important physiological processes.

  2. Involvement of Astrocytes in Mediating the Central Effects of Ghrelin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frago, Laura M.; Chowen, Julie A.

    2017-01-01

    Although astrocytes are the most abundant cells in the mammalian brain, much remains to be learned about their molecular and functional features. Astrocytes express receptors for numerous hormones and metabolic factors, including the appetite-promoting hormone ghrelin. The metabolic effects of ghrelin are largely opposite to those of leptin, as it stimulates food intake and decreases energy expenditure. Ghrelin is also involved in glucose-sensing and glucose homeostasis. The widespread expression of the ghrelin receptor in the central nervous system suggests that this hormone is not only involved in metabolism, but also in other essential functions in the brain. In fact, ghrelin has been shown to promote cell survival and neuroprotection, with some studies exploring the use of ghrelin as a therapeutic agent against metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we highlight the possible role of glial cells as mediators of ghrelin’s actions within the brain. PMID:28257088

  3. Ultrastructural study of myelinating cells and sub-pial astrocytes in developing rat spinal cord.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagashima, K

    1979-12-01

    The anterior funiculus of the spinal cervical cord of post-natal rats was examined ultrastructurally. The myelinating cells found one day after brith contained a large amount of evenly distributed ribosomes up to the outer tongue of mesaxons, representing the cytoplasmic density. These cells were separated by astrocytic processes from the pial basement membrane, even when they were located on the pial surface. Astrocytes contained glial fibrils from one day onwards and often attached their processes to the pial basement membrane. Although the cytoplasmic processes of astrocytes occasionally wrapped axons, they were never shown to form the initial layer of myelin sheaths. However, the tenuous processes of the sub-pial astrocytes were occasionally rolled in myelin lamellae, as if a part of the myelin sheaths was constructed by astrocytic processes. The interpretation for this finding is discussed in relation to function and potency of the astrocytes, and variations and anomalies of nervous ontogeny.

  4. Three-dimensional Ca2+ imaging advances understanding of astrocyte biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindocci, Erika; Savtchouk, Iaroslav; Liaudet, Nicolas; Becker, Denise; Carriero, Giovanni; Volterra, Andrea

    2017-05-19

    Astrocyte communication is typically studied by two-dimensional calcium ion (Ca 2+ ) imaging, but this method has not yielded conclusive data on the role of astrocytes in synaptic and vascular function. We developed a three-dimensional two-photon imaging approach and studied Ca 2+ dynamics in entire astrocyte volumes, including during axon-astrocyte interactions. In both awake mice and brain slices, we found that Ca 2+ activity in an individual astrocyte is scattered throughout the cell, largely compartmented between regions, preponderantly local within regions, and heterogeneously distributed regionally and locally. Processes and endfeet displayed frequent fast activity, whereas the soma was infrequently active. In awake mice, activity was higher than in brain slices, particularly in endfeet and processes, and displayed occasional multifocal cellwide events. Astrocytes responded locally to minimal axonal firing with time-correlated Ca 2+ spots. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  5. Ketogenic diet and astrocyte/neuron metabolic interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Vamecq Joseph; Maurois Pierre; Bac Pierre; Delplanque Bernadette; Pages Nicole

    2007-01-01

    The ketogenic diet is an anticonvulsant diet enriched in fat. It provides the body with a minimal protein requirement and a restricted carbohydrate supply, the vast majority of calories (more than 80-90%) being given by fat. Though anticonvulsant activity of ketogenic diet has been well documented by a large number of experimental and clinical studies, underlying mechanisms still remain partially unclear. Astrocyte-neuron interactions, among which metabolic shuttles, may influence synaptic ac...

  6. Methamphetamine compromises gap junctional communication in astrocytes and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellano, Paul; Nwagbo, Chisom; Martinez, Luis R; Eugenin, Eliseo A

    2016-05-01

    Methamphetamine (meth) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that results in psychological and physical dependency. The long-term effects of meth within the CNS include neuronal plasticity changes, blood-brain barrier compromise, inflammation, electrical dysfunction, neuronal/glial toxicity, and an increased risk to infectious diseases including HIV. Most of the reported meth effects in the CNS are related to dysregulation of chemical synapses by altering the release and uptake of neurotransmitters, especially dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. However, little is known about the effects of meth on connexin (Cx) containing channels, such as gap junctions (GJ) and hemichannels (HC). We examined the effects of meth on Cx expression, function, and its role in NeuroAIDS. We found that meth altered Cx expression and localization, decreased GJ communication between neurons and astrocytes, and induced the opening of Cx43/Cx36 HC. Furthermore, we found that these changes in GJ and HC induced by meth treatment were mediated by activation of dopamine receptors, suggesting that dysregulation of dopamine signaling induced by meth is essential for GJ and HC compromise. Meth-induced changes in GJ and HC contributed to amplified CNS toxicity by dysregulating glutamate metabolism and increasing the susceptibility of neurons and astrocytes to bystander apoptosis induced by HIV. Together, our results indicate that connexin containing channels, GJ and HC, are essential in the pathogenesis of meth and increase the sensitivity of the CNS to HIV CNS disease. Methamphetamine (meth) is an extremely addictive central nervous system stimulant. Meth reduced gap junctional (GJ) communication by inducing internalization of connexin-43 (Cx43) in astrocytes and reducing expression of Cx36 in neurons by a mechanism involving activation of dopamine receptors (see cartoon). Meth-induced changes in Cx containing channels increased extracellular levels of glutamate and resulted in higher

  7. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Nan; Yao, Fang; Li, Ke; Zhang, Lanlan; Yin, Guo; Du, Mingjun; Wu, Bingyi

    2017-04-01

    Fisetin (3,3',4',7-tetrahydroxyflavone) is a plant flavonol found in fruits and vegetables that has been reported to inhibit migration and proliferation in several types of cancer. Reactive astrogliosis involves astrocyte migration and proliferation, and contributes to the formation of glial scars in central nervous system (CNS) disorders. However, the effect of fisetin on the migration and proliferation of astrocytes remains unclear. In this study, we found that fisetin inhibited astrocyte migration in a scratch-wound assay and diminished the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK; Tyr576/577 and paxillin (Tyr118). It also suppressed cell proliferation, as indicated by the decreased number of 5-ethynyl-2'-deoxyuridine (EdU)-positive cells, induced cell cycle arrest in the G1 phase, reduced the percentage of cells in the G2 and S phase (as measured by flow cytometry), and decreased cyclin D1 expression, but had no effect on apoptosis. Fisetin also decreased the phosphorylation levels of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk)1/2, but had no effect on the phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). These results indicate that fisetin inhibits aggressive cell phenotypes by suppressing cell migration and proliferation via the Akt/Erk signaling pathway. Fisetin may thus have potential for use as a therapeutic strategy targeting reactive astrocytes, which may lead to the inhibition of glial scar formation in vitro.

  8. Key Metabolic Enzymes Underlying Astrocytic Upregulation of GABAergic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Przemysław T. Kaczor

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available GABAergic plasticity is recognized as a key mechanism of shaping the activity of the neuronal networks. However, its description is challenging because of numerous neuron-specific mechanisms. In particular, while essential role of glial cells in the excitatory plasticity is well established, their involvement in GABAergic plasticity only starts to emerge. To address this problem, we used two models: neuronal cell culture (NC and astrocyte-neuronal co-culture (ANCC, where we chemically induced long-term potentiation at inhibitory synapses (iLTP. iLTP could be induced both in NC and ANCC but in ANCC its extent was larger. Importantly, this functional iLTP manifestation was accompanied by an increase in gephyrin puncta size. Furthermore, blocking astrocyte Krebs cycle with fluoroacetate (FA in ANCC prevented enhancement of both mIPSC amplitude and gephyrin puncta size but this effect was not observed in NC, indicating a key role in neuron-astrocyte cross-talk. Blockade of monocarboxylate transport with α-Cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid (4CIN abolished iLTP both in NC and ANCC and in the latter model prevented also enlargement of gephyrin puncta. Similarly, blockade of glycogen phosphorylase with BAYU6751 prevented enlargement of gephyrin puncta upon iLTP induction. Finally, block of glutamine synthetase with methionine sulfoxide (MSO nearly abolished mIPSC increase in both NMDA stimulated cell groups but did not prevent enlargement of gephyrin puncta. In conclusion, we provide further evidence that GABAergic plasticity is strongly regulated by astrocytes and the underlying mechanisms involve key metabolic enzymes. Considering the strategic role of GABAergic interneurons, the plasticity described here indicates possible mechanism whereby metabolism regulates the network activity.

  9. Gap junction coupling confers isopotentiality on astrocyte syncytium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Baofeng; Buckalew, Richard; Du, Yixing; Kiyoshi, Conrad M.; Alford, Catherine C.; Wang, Wei; McTigue, Dana D.; Enyeart, John J.; Terman, David; Zhou, Min

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are extensively coupled through gap junctions into a syncytium. However, the basic role of this major brain network remains largely unknown. Using electrophysiological and computational modeling methods, we demonstrate that the membrane potential (VM) of an individual astrocyte in a hippocampal syncytium, but not in a single, freshly isolated cell preparation, can be well-maintained at quasi-physiological levels when recorded with reduced or K+ free pipette solutions that alter the K+ equilibrium potential to non-physiological voltages. We show that an astrocyte’s associated syncytium provides powerful electrical coupling, together with ionic coupling at a lesser extent, that equalizes the astrocyte’s VM to levels comparable to its neighbors. Functionally, this minimizes VM depolarization attributable to elevated levels of local extracellular K+ and thereby maintains a sustained driving force for highly efficient K+ uptake. Thus, gap junction coupling functions to achieve isopotentiality in astrocytic networks, whereby a constant extracellular environment can be powerfully maintained for crucial functions of neural circuits. PMID:26435164

  10. Glucose and hypothalamic astrocytes: More than a fueling role?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leloup, C; Allard, C; Carneiro, L; Fioramonti, X; Collins, S; Pénicaud, L

    2016-05-26

    Brain plays a central role in energy homeostasis continuously integrating numerous peripheral signals such as circulating nutrients, and in particular blood glucose level, a variable that must be highly regulated. Then, the brain orchestrates adaptive responses to modulate food intake and peripheral organs activity in order to achieve the fine tuning of glycemia. More than fifty years ago, the presence of glucose-sensitive neurons was discovered in the hypothalamus, but what makes them specific and identifiable still remains disconnected from their electrophysiological signature. On the other hand, astrocytes represent the major class of macroglial cells and are now recognized to support an increasing number of neuronal functions. One of these functions consists in the regulation of energy homeostasis through neuronal fueling and nutrient sensing. Twenty years ago, we discovered that the glucose transporter GLUT2, the canonical "glucosensor" of the pancreatic beta-cell together with the glucokinase, was also present in astrocytes and participated in hypothalamic glucose sensing. Since then, many studies have identified other actors and emphasized the astroglial participation in this mechanism. Growing evidence suggest that astrocytes form a complex network and have to be considered as spatially coordinated and regulated metabolic units. In this review we aim to provide an updated view of the molecular and respective cellular pathways involved in hypothalamic glucose sensing, and their relevance in physiological and pathological states. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Verified Subtyping with Traits and Mixins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asankhaya Sharma

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Traits allow decomposing programs into smaller parts and mixins are a form of composition that resemble multiple inheritance. Unfortunately, in the presence of traits, programming languages like Scala give up on subtyping relation between objects. In this paper, we present a method to check subtyping between objects based on entailment in separation logic. We implement our method as a domain specific language in Scala and apply it on the Scala standard library. We have verified that 67% of mixins used in the Scala standard library do indeed conform to subtyping between the traits that are used to build them.

  12. Genetic Alterations in the Molecular Subtypes of Bladder Cancer: Illustration in the Cancer Genome Atlas Dataset.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Woonyoung; Ochoa, Andrea; McConkey, David J; Aine, Mattias; Höglund, Mattias; Kim, William Y; Real, Francisco X; Kiltie, Anne E; Milsom, Ian; Dyrskjøt, Lars; Lerner, Seth P

    2017-09-01

    Recent whole genome mRNA expression profiling studies revealed that bladder cancers can be grouped into molecular subtypes, some of which share clinical properties and gene expression patterns with the intrinsic subtypes of breast cancer and the molecular subtypes found in other solid tumors. The molecular subtypes in other solid tumors are enriched with specific mutations and copy number aberrations that are thought to underlie their distinct progression patterns, and biological and clinical properties. The availability of comprehensive genomic data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and other large projects made it possible to correlate the presence of DNA alterations with tumor molecular subtype membership. Our overall goal was to determine whether specific DNA mutations and/or copy number variations are enriched in specific molecular subtypes. We used the complete TCGA RNA-seq dataset and three different published classifiers developed by our groups to assign TCGA's bladder cancers to molecular subtypes, and examined the prevalence of the most common DNA alterations within them. We interpreted the results against the background of what was known from the published literature about the prevalence of these alterations in nonmuscle-invasive and muscle-invasive bladder cancers. The results confirmed that alterations involving RB1 and NFE2L2 were enriched in basal cancers, whereas alterations involving FGFR3 and KDM6A were enriched in luminal tumors. The results further reinforce the conclusion that the molecular subtypes of bladder cancer are distinct disease entities with specific genetic alterations. Our observation showed that some of subtype-enriched mutations and copy number aberrations are clinically actionable, which has direct implications for the clinical management of patients with bladder cancer. Copyright © 2017 European Association of Urology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Regulation of neuron–astrocyte metabolic coupling across the sleep–wake cycle

    OpenAIRE

    Petit, J.-M.; Magistretti, P.J.

    2016-01-01

    Over the last thirty years, a growing number of studies showed that astrocytes play a pivotal role in the energy support to synapses. More precisely, astrocytes adjust energy production to neuronal energy needs through different mechanisms grouped under the term "neurometabolic coupling" (NMC). In this review we describe these mechanisms of coupling and how they involve astrocytes. From a physiological point of view, these mechanisms of coupling are particularly important to ensure normal syn...

  14. Astrocytic energetics during excitatory neurotransmission: What are contributions of glutamate oxidation and glycolysis?

    OpenAIRE

    Dienel, Gerald A.

    2013-01-01

    Astrocytic energetics of excitatory neurotransmission is controversial due to discrepant findings in different experimental systems in vitro and in vivo. The energy requirements of glutamate uptake are believed by some researchers to be satisfied by glycolysis coupled with shuttling of lactate to neurons for oxidation. However, astrocytes increase glycogenolysis and oxidative metabolism during sensory stimulation in vivo, indicating that other sources of energy are used by astrocytes during b...

  15. Stretch-induced Ca2+ independent ATP release in hippocampal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Yingfei; Teng, Sasa; Zheng, Lianghong; Sun, Suhua; Li, Jie; Guo, Ning; Li, Mingli; Wang, Li; Zhu, Feipeng; Wang, Changhe; Rao, Zhiren; Zhou, Zhuan

    2018-02-28

    Similar to neurons, astrocytes actively participate in synaptic transmission via releasing gliotransmitters. The Ca 2+ -dependent release of gliotransmitters includes glutamate and ATP. Following an 'on-cell-like' mechanical stimulus to a single astrocyte, Ca 2+ independent single, large, non-quantal, ATP release occurs. Astrocytic ATP release is inhibited by either selective antagonist treatment or genetic knockdown of P2X7 receptor channels. Our work suggests that ATP can be released from astrocytes via two independent pathways in hippocampal astrocytes; in addition to the known Ca 2+ -dependent vesicular release, larger non-quantal ATP release depends on P2X7 channels following mechanical stretch. Astrocytic ATP release is essential for brain functions such as synaptic long-term potentiation for learning and memory. However, whether and how ATP is released via exocytosis remains hotly debated. All previous studies of non-vesicular ATP release have used indirect assays. By contrast, two recent studies report vesicular ATP release using more direct assays. In the present study, using patch clamped 'ATP-sniffer cells', we re-investigated astrocytic ATP release at single-vesicle resolution in hippocampal astrocytes. Following an 'on-cell-like' mechanical stimulus of a single astrocyte, a Ca 2+ independent single large non-quantal ATP release occurred, in contrast to the Ca 2+ -dependent multiple small quantal ATP release in a chromaffin cell. The mechanical stimulation-induced ATP release from an astrocyte was inhibited by either exposure to a selective antagonist or genetic knockdown of P2X7 receptor channels. Functional P2X7 channels were expressed in astrocytes in hippocampal brain slices. Thus, in addition to small quantal ATP release, larger non-quantal ATP release depends on P2X7 channels in astrocytes. © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2018 The Physiological Society.

  16. Transformation of Astrocytes to a Neuroprotective Phenotype by Microglia via P2Y1 Receptor Downregulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Youichi Shinozaki

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Microglia and astrocytes become reactive following traumatic brain injury (TBI. However, the coordination of this reactivity and its relation to pathophysiology are unclear. Here, we show that microglia transform astrocytes into a neuroprotective phenotype via downregulation of the P2Y1 purinergic receptor. TBI initially caused microglial activation in the injury core, followed by reactive astrogliosis in the peri-injured region and formation of a neuroprotective astrocyte scar. Equivalent changes to astrocytes were observed in vitro after injury. This change in astrocyte phenotype resulted from P2Y1 receptor downregulation, mediated by microglia-derived cytokines. In mice, astrocyte-specific P2Y1 receptor overexpression (Astro-P2Y1OE counteracted scar formation, while astrocyte-specific P2Y1 receptor knockdown (Astro-P2Y1KD facilitated scar formation, suggesting critical roles of P2Y1 receptors in the transformation. Astro-P2Y1OE and Astro-P2Y1KD mice showed increased and reduced neuronal damage, respectively. Altogether, our findings indicate that microglia-astrocyte interaction, involving a purinergic signal, is essential for the formation of neuroprotective astrocytes.

  17. An Efficient Platform for Astrocyte Differentiation from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tcw, Julia; Wang, Minghui; Pimenova, Anna A; Bowles, Kathryn R; Hartley, Brigham J; Lacin, Emre; Machlovi, Saima I; Abdelaal, Rawan; Karch, Celeste M; Phatnani, Hemali; Slesinger, Paul A; Zhang, Bin; Goate, Alison M; Brennand, Kristen J

    2017-08-08

    Growing evidence implicates the importance of glia, particularly astrocytes, in neurological and psychiatric diseases. Here, we describe a rapid and robust method for the differentiation of highly pure populations of replicative astrocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), via a neural progenitor cell (NPC) intermediate. We evaluated this protocol across 42 NPC lines (derived from 30 individuals). Transcriptomic analysis demonstrated that hiPSC-astrocytes from four individuals are highly similar to primary human fetal astrocytes and characteristic of a non-reactive state. hiPSC-astrocytes respond to inflammatory stimulants, display phagocytic capacity, and enhance microglial phagocytosis. hiPSC-astrocytes also possess spontaneous calcium transient activity. Our protocol is a reproducible, straightforward (single medium), and rapid (method to generate populations of hiPSC-astrocytes that can be used for neuron-astrocyte and microglia-astrocyte co-cultures for the study of neuropsychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Morphine Protects Spinal Cord Astrocytes from Glutamate-Induced Apoptosis via Reducing Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress

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    Chao Zhang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Glutamate is not only a neurotransmitter but also an important neurotoxin in central nervous system (CNS. Chronic elevation of glutamate induces both neuronal and glial cell apoptosis. However, its effect on astrocytes is complex and still remains unclear. In this study, we investigated whether morphine, a common opioid ligand, could affect glutamate-induced apoptosis in astrocytes. Primary cultured astrocytes were incubated with glutamate in the presence/absence of morphine. It was found that morphine could reduce glutamate-induced apoptosis of astrocytes. Furthermore, glutamate activated Ca2+ release, thereby inducing endoplasmic reticulum (ER stress in astrocytes, while morphine attenuated this deleterious effect. Using siRNA to reduce the expression of κ-opioid receptor, morphine could not effectively inhibit glutamate-stimulated Ca2+ release in astrocytes, the protective effect of morphine on glutamate-injured astrocytes was also suppressed. These results suggested that morphine could protect astrocytes from glutamate-induced apoptosis via reducing Ca2+ overload and ER stress pathways. In conclusion, this study indicated that excitotoxicity participated in the glutamate mediated apoptosis in astrocytes, while morphine attenuated this deleterious effect via regulating Ca2+ release and ER stress.

  19. Immune and Inflammatory Responses in the Central Nervous System: Modulation by Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Penkowa, Milena; hidalgo, juan; aschner, michael

    2008-01-01

    Beyond their long-recognized support functions, astrocytes are active partners of neurons in processing information, synaptic integration, and production of trophic factors, just to name a few. Both microglia and astrocytes produce and secrete a number of cytokines, modulating and integrating...... the communication between hematogenous cells and resident cells of the central nervous system (CNS). This review will address (1) the functions of astrocytes in the normal brain and (2) their role in surveying noxious stimuli within the brain, with particular emphasis on astrocytic responses to damage or disease...

  20. Synthetic AAV/CRISPR vectors for blocking HIV-1 expression in persistently infected astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunze, Christine; Börner, Kathleen; Kienle, Eike; Orschmann, Tanja; Rusha, Ejona; Schneider, Martha; Radivojkov-Blagojevic, Milena; Drukker, Micha; Desbordes, Sabrina; Grimm, Dirk; Brack-Werner, Ruth

    2018-02-01

    Astrocytes, the most abundant cells in the mammalian brain, perform key functions and are involved in several neurodegenerative diseases. The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can persist in astrocytes, contributing to the HIV burden and neurological dysfunctions in infected individuals. While a comprehensive approach to HIV cure must include the targeting of HIV-1 in astrocytes, dedicated tools for this purpose are still lacking. Here we report a novel Adeno-associated virus-based vector (AAV9P1) with a synthetic surface peptide for transduction of astrocytes. Analysis of AAV9P1 transduction efficiencies with single brain cell populations, including primary human brain cells, as well as human brain organoids demonstrated that AAV9P1 targeted terminally differentiated human astrocytes much more efficiently than neurons. We then investigated whether AAV9P1 can be used to deliver HIV-inhibitory genes to astrocytes. To this end we generated AAV9P1 vectors containing genes for HIV-1 proviral editing by CRISPR/Cas9. Latently HIV-1 infected astrocytes transduced with these vectors showed significantly diminished reactivation of proviruses, compared with untransduced cultures. Sequence analysis identified mutations/deletions in key HIV-1 transcriptional control regions. We conclude that AAV9P1 is a promising tool for gene delivery to astrocytes and may facilitate inactivation/destruction of persisting HIV-1 proviruses in astrocyte reservoirs. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Disruption of astrocyte-neuron cholesterol cross talk affects neuronal function in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenza, M; Marullo, M; Di Paolo, E; Cesana, E; Zuccato, C; Biella, G; Cattaneo, E

    2015-04-01

    In the adult brain, neurons require local cholesterol production, which is supplied by astrocytes through apoE-containing lipoproteins. In Huntington's disease (HD), such cholesterol biosynthesis in the brain is severely reduced. Here we show that this defect, occurring in astrocytes, is detrimental for HD neurons. Astrocytes bearing the huntingtin protein containing increasing CAG repeats secreted less apoE-lipoprotein-bound cholesterol in the medium. Conditioned media from HD astrocytes and lipoprotein-depleted conditioned media from wild-type (wt) astrocytes were equally detrimental in a neurite outgrowth assay and did not support synaptic activity in HD neurons, compared with conditions of cholesterol supplementation or conditioned media from wt astrocytes. Molecular perturbation of cholesterol biosynthesis and efflux in astrocytes caused similarly altered astrocyte-neuron cross talk, whereas enhancement of glial SREBP2 and ABCA1 function reversed the aspects of neuronal dysfunction in HD. These findings indicate that astrocyte-mediated cholesterol homeostasis could be a potential therapeutic target to ameliorate neuronal dysfunction in HD.

  2. Direct Thy-1/alphaVbeta3 integrin interaction mediates neuron to astrocyte communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermosilla, Tamara; Muñoz, Daniel; Herrera-Molina, Rodrigo; Valdivia, Alejandra; Muñoz, Nicolás; Nham, Sang-Uk; Schneider, Pascal; Burridge, Keith; Quest, Andrew F G; Leyton, Lisette

    2008-06-01

    Thy-1 is an abundant neuronal glycoprotein of poorly defined function. We recently provided evidence indicating that Thy-1 clusters a beta3-containing integrin in astrocytes to induce tyrosine phosphorylation, RhoA activation and the formation of focal adhesions and stress fibers. To date, the alpha subunit partner of beta3 integrin in DI TNC1 astrocytes is unknown. Similarly, the ability of neuronal, membrane-bound Thy-1 to trigger astrocyte signaling via integrin engagement remains speculation. Here, evidence that alphav forms an alphavbeta3 heterodimer in DI TNC1 astrocytes was obtained. In neuron-astrocyte association assays, the presence of either anti-alphav or anti-beta3 integrin antibodies reduced cell-cell interaction demonstrating the requirement of both integrin subunits for this association. Moreover, anti-Thy-1 antibodies blocked stimulation of astrocytes by neurons but not the binding of these two cell types. Thus, neuron-astrocyte association involved binding between molecular components in addition to the Thy-1-integrin; however, the signaling events leading to focal adhesion formation in astrocytes depended exclusively on the latter interaction. Additionally, wild-type (RLD) but not mutated (RLE) Thy-1 was shown to directly interact with alphavbeta3 integrin by Surface Plasmon Resonance analysis. This interaction was promoted by divalent cations and was species-independent. Together, these results demonstrate that the alphavbeta3 integrin heterodimer interacts directly with Thy-1 present on neuronal cells to stimulate astrocytes.

  3. Does rapid and physiological astrocyte-neuron signalling amplify epileptic activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henneberger, Christian

    2017-03-15

    The hippocampus is a key brain region in the pathophysiology of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Long-term changes of its architecture and function on the network and cellular level are well documented in epilepsy. Astrocytes can control many aspects of neuronal function and their long-term alterations over weeks, months and years play an important role in epilepsy. However, a pathophysiological transformation of astrocytes does not seem to be required for astrocytes to contribute to epileptic activity. Some of the properties of physiological astrocyte-neuron communication could allow these cells to exacerbate or synchronize neuronal firing on shorter time scales of milliseconds to minutes. Therefore, these astrocyte-neuron interactions are increasingly recognized as potential contributors to epileptic activity. Fast and reciprocal communication between astrocytes and neurons is enabled by a diverse set of mechanisms that could both amplify and counteract epileptic activity. They may thus promote or cause development of epileptic activity or inhibit it. Mechanisms of astrocyte-neuron interactions that can quickly increase network excitability involve, for example, astrocyte Ca 2+ and Na + signalling, K + buffering, gap junction coupling and metabolism. However, rapid changes of astrocyte neurotransmitter uptake and morphology may also underlie or support development of network hyperexcitability. The temporal characteristics of these interactions, their ability to synchronize neuronal activity and their net effect on network activity will determine their contribution to the emergence or maintenance of epileptic activity. © 2016 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2016 The Physiological Society.

  4. Functional alterations of astrocytes in mental disorders: pharmacological significance as a drug target

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yutaka eKoyama

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes play an essential role in supporting brain functions in physiological and pathological states. Modulation of their pathophysiological responses have beneficial actions on nerve tissue injured by brain insults and neurodegenerative diseases, therefore astrocytes are recognized as promising targets for neuroprotective drugs. Recent investigations have identified several astrocytic mechanisms for modulating synaptic transmission and neural plasticity. These include altered expression of transporters for neurotransmitters, release of gliotransmitters and neurotrophic factors, and intercellular communication through gap junctions. Investigation of patients with mental disorders shows morphological and functional alterations in astrocytes. According to these observations, manipulation of astrocytic function by gene mutation and pharmacological tools reproduce mental disorder-like behavior in experimental animals. Some drugs clinically used for mental disorders affect astrocyte function. As experimental evidence shows their role in the pathogenesis of mental disorders, astrocytes have gained much attention as drug targets for mental disorders. In this article, I review functional alterations of astrocytes in several mental disorders including schizophrenia, mood disorder, drug dependence, and neurodevelopmental disorders. The pharmacological significance of astrocytes in mental disorders is also discussed.

  5. Dynamic inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission by astrocyte-derived ATP in hippocampal cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koizumi, Schuichi; Fujishita, Kayoko; Tsuda, Makoto; Shigemoto-Mogami, Yukari; Inoue, Kazuhide

    2003-09-01

    Originally ascribed passive roles in the CNS, astrocytes are now known to have an active role in the regulation of synaptic transmission. Neuronal activity can evoke Ca2+ transients in astrocytes, and Ca2+ transients in astrocytes can evoke changes in neuronal activity. The excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate has been shown to mediate such bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. We demonstrate here that ATP, a primary mediator of intercellular Ca2+ signaling among astrocytes, also mediates intercellular signaling between astrocytes and neurons in hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes evoked Ca2+ waves mediated by the release of ATP and the activation of P2 receptors. Mechanically evoked Ca2+ waves led to decreased excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmission in an ATP-dependent manner. Exogenous application of ATP does not affect postsynaptic glutamatergic responses but decreased presynaptic exocytotic events. Finally, we show that astrocytes exhibit spontaneous Ca2+ waves mediated by extracellular ATP and that inhibition of these Ca2+ responses enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission. We therefore conclude that ATP released from astrocytes exerts tonic and activity-dependent down-regulation of synaptic transmission via presynaptic mechanisms.

  6. Astrocyte-neuron crosstalk regulates the expression and subcellular localization of carbohydrate metabolism enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamczur, Piotr; Borsuk, Borys; Paszko, Jadwiga; Sas, Zuzanna; Mozrzymas, Jerzy; Wiśniewski, Jacek R; Gizak, Agnieszka; Rakus, Dariusz

    2015-02-01

    Astrocytes releasing glucose- and/or glycogen-derived lactate and glutamine play a crucial role in shaping neuronal function and plasticity. Little is known, however, how metabolic functions of astrocytes, e.g., their ability to degrade glucosyl units, are affected by the presence of neurons. To address this issue we carried out experiments which demonstrated that co-culturing of rat hippocampal astrocytes with neurons significantly elevates the level of mRNA and protein for crucial enzymes of glycolysis (phosphofructokinase, aldolase, and pyruvate kinase), glycogen metabolism (glycogen synthase and glycogen phosphorylase), and glutamine synthetase in astrocytes. Simultaneously, the decrease of the capability of neurons to metabolize glucose and glutamine is observed. We provide evidence that neurons alter the expression of astrocytic enzymes by secretion of as yet unknown molecule(s) into the extracellular fluid. Moreover, our data demonstrate that almost all studied enzymes may localize in astrocytic nuclei and this localization is affected by the co-culturing with neurons which also reduces proliferative activity of astrocytes. Our results provide the first experimental evidence that the astrocyte-neuron crosstalk substantially affects the expression of basal metabolic enzymes in the both types of cells and influences their subcellular localization in astrocytes. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Determination of Glucose Utilization Rates in Cultured Astrocytes and Neurons with [14C]deoxyglucose: Progress, Pitfalls, and Discovery of Intracellular Glucose Compartmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F; Sokoloff, Louis; Driscoll, Bernard F

    2017-01-01

    2-Deoxy-D-[ 14 C]glucose ([ 14 C]DG) is commonly used to determine local glucose utilization rates (CMR glc ) in living brain and to estimate CMR glc in cultured brain cells as rates of [ 14 C]DG phosphorylation. Phosphorylation rates of [ 14 C]DG and its metabolizable fluorescent analog, 2-(N-(7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazol-4-yl)amino)-2-deoxyglucose (2-NBDG), however, do not take into account differences in the kinetics of transport and metabolism of [ 14 C]DG or 2-NBDG and glucose in neuronal and astrocytic cells in cultures or in single cells in brain tissue, and conclusions drawn from these data may, therefore, not be correct. As a first step toward the goal of quantitative determination of CMR glc in astrocytes and neurons in cultures, the steady-state intracellular-to-extracellular concentration ratios (distribution spaces) for glucose and [ 14 C]DG were determined in cultured striatal neurons and astrocytes as functions of extracellular glucose concentration. Unexpectedly, the glucose distribution spaces rose during extreme hypoglycemia, exceeding 1.0 in astrocytes, whereas the [ 14 C]DG distribution space fell at the lowest glucose levels. Calculated CMR glc was greatly overestimated in hypoglycemic and normoglycemic cells because the intracellular glucose concentrations were too high. Determination of the distribution space for [ 14 C]glucose revealed compartmentation of intracellular glucose in astrocytes, and probably, also in neurons. A smaller metabolic pool is readily accessible to hexokinase and communicates with extracellular glucose, whereas the larger pool is sequestered from hexokinase activity. A new experimental approach using double-labeled assays with DG and glucose is suggested to avoid the limitations imposed by glucose compartmentation on metabolic assays.

  8. Association of human herpesvirus 6 subtypes with symptomatic apical periodontitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernádi, Katinka; Csoma, Eszter; Adám, Balázs; Szalmás, Anita; Gyöngyösi, Eszter; Veress, György; Ildikó-Márton; Kónya, József

    2011-09-01

    The occurrence of human herpesvirus (HHV) 6 subtypes A and B in apical periodontitis was determined. The relationship of HHV-6 subtypes to other disease associated herpesviruses, i.e., Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and human cytomegalovirus, was also investigated. Forty apical periodontitis samples (17 symptomatic and 23 asymptomatic) and 40 healthy pulp control samples were collected. Nested polymerase chain reaction was used to detect HHV-6 DNA. HHV-6 DNA was observed in significantly higher frequencies in apical periodontitis samples than in control samples (20% vs. 2.5%; P = .03). Further classification of apical lesions revealed that subtype B of HHV-6 was significantly associated with large-sized and symptomatic lesions (P apical lesions (77%) harbored ≥1 of the tested herpesviruses: EBV was the most frequent herpesvirus (72.5%) in apical periodontitis, followed by HHV-6 (20%). Our findings suggest that EBV and HHV-6B infections can be associated with symptomatic apical periodontitis. Copyright © 2011 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. (13)C heteronuclear NMR studies of the interaction of cultured neurons and astrocytes and aluminum blockade of the preferential release of citrate from astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meshitsuka, Shunsuke; Aremu, David A

    2008-02-01

    Citrate has been identified as a major tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle constituent preferentially released by astrocytes. We undertook the present study to examine further the nature of metabolic compartmentation in central nervous system tissues using (13)C-labeled glucose and to provide new information on the influence of aluminum on the metabolic interaction between neurons and astrocytes. Metabolites released into the culture medium from astrocytes and neuron-astrocyte coculture, as well as the perchloric acid extracts of the cells were analyzed using 2D (1)H and (13)C NMR spectroscopy. Astrocytes released citrate into the culture medium and the released citrate was consumed by neurons in coculture. Citrate release by astrocytes was blocked in the presence of aluminum, with progressive accumulation of citrate within the cells. We propose citrate supply is a more efficient energy source than lactate for neurons to produce ATP, especially in the hypoglycemic state on account of it being a direct component of the TCA cycle. Astrocytes may be the cellular compartment for aluminum accumulation as a citrate complex in the brain.

  10. Hypertension Subtypes among Hypertensive Patients in Ibadan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abiodun M. Adeoye

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Certain hypertension subtypes have been shown to increase the risk for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and may be related to specific underlying genetic determinants. Inappropriate characterization of subtypes of hypertension makes efforts at elucidating the genetic contributions to the etiology of hypertension largely vapid. We report the hypertension subtypes among patients with hypertension from South-Western Nigeria. Methods. A total of 1858 subjects comprising 76% female, hypertensive, aged 18 and above were recruited into the study from two centers in Ibadan, Nigeria. Hypertension was identified using JNCVII definition and was further grouped into four subtypes: controlled hypertension (CH, isolated systolic hypertension (ISH, isolated diastolic hypertension (IDH, and systolic-diastolic hypertension (SDH. Results. Systolic-diastolic hypertension was the most prevalent. Whereas SDH (77.6% versus 73.5% and IDH (4.9% versus 4.7% were more prevalent among females, ISH (10.1% versus 6.2% was higher among males (P=0.048. Female subjects were more obese (P<0.0001 and SDH was prevalent among the obese group. Conclusion. Gender and obesity significantly influenced the distribution of the hypertension subtypes. Characterization of hypertension by subtypes in genetic association studies could lead to identification of previously unknown genetic variants involved in the etiology of hypertension. Large-scale studies among various ethnic groups may be needed to confirm these observations.

  11. Interferon α subtypes in HIV infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutter, Kathrin; Dickow, Julia; Dittmer, Ulf

    2018-02-13

    Type I interferons (IFN), which are immediately induced after most virus infections, are central for direct antiviral immunity and link innate and adaptive immune responses. However, several viruses have evolved strategies to evade the IFN response by preventing IFN induction or blocking IFN signaling pathways. Thus, therapeutic application of exogenous type I IFN or agonists inducing type I IFN responses are a considerable option for future immunotherapies against chronic viral infections. An important part of the type I IFN family are 12 IFNα subtypes, which all bind the same receptor, but significantly differ in their biological activities. Up to date only one IFNα subtype (IFNα2) is being used in clinical treatment against chronic virus infections, however its therapeutic success rate is rather limited, especially during Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection. Recent studies addressed the important question if other IFNα subtypes would be more potent against retroviral infections in in vitro and in vivo experiments. Indeed, very potent IFNα subtypes were defined and their antiviral and immunomodulatory properties were characterized. In this review we summarize the recent findings on the role of individual IFNα subtypes during HIV and Simian Immunodeficiency Virus infection. This includes their induction during HIV/SIV infection, their antiretroviral activity and the regulation of immune response against HIV by different IFNα subtypes. The findings might facilitate novel strategies for HIV cure or functional cure studies. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Enhanced astrocytic nitric oxide production and neuronal modifications in the neocortex of a NOS2 mutant mouse.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yossi Buskila

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It has been well accepted that glial cells in the central nervous system (CNS produce nitric oxide (NO through the induction of a nitric oxide synthase isoform (NOS2 only in response to various insults. Recently we described rapid astroglial, NOS2-dependent, NO production in the neocortex of healthy mice on a time scale relevant to neuronal activity. To explore a possible role for astroglial NOS2 in normal brain function we investigated a NOS2 knockout mouse (B6;129P2-Nos2(tm1Lau/J, Jackson Laboratory. Previous studies of this mouse strain revealed mainly altered immune responses, but no compensatory pathways and no CNS abnormalities have been reported. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To our surprise, using NO imaging in brain slices in combination with biochemical methods we uncovered robust NO production by neocortical astrocytes of the NOS2 mutant. These findings indicate the existence of an alternative pathway that increases basal NOS activity. In addition, the astroglial mutation instigated modifications of neuronal attributes, shown by changes in the membrane properties of pyramidal neurons, and revealed in distinct behavioral abnormalities characterized by an increase in stress-related parameters. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results strongly indicate the involvement of astrocytic-derived NO in modifying the activity of neuronal networks. In addition, the findings corroborate data linking NO signaling with stress-related behavior, and highlight the potential use of this genetic model for studies of stress-susceptibility. Lastly, our results beg re-examination of previous studies that used this mouse strain to examine the pathophysiology of brain insults, assuming lack of astrocytic nitrosative reaction.

  13. Astrocyte Transforming Growth Factor Beta 1 Protects Synapses against Aβ Oligomers in Alzheimer's Disease Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diniz, Luan Pereira; Tortelli, Vanessa; Matias, Isadora; Morgado, Juliana; Bérgamo Araujo, Ana Paula; Melo, Helen M; Seixas da Silva, Gisele S; Alves-Leon, Soniza V; de Souza, Jorge M; Ferreira, Sergio T; De Felice, Fernanda G; Gomes, Flávia Carvalho Alcantara

    2017-07-12

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by progressive cognitive decline, increasingly attributed to neuronal dysfunction induced by amyloid-β oligomers (AβOs). Although the impact of AβOs on neurons has been extensively studied, only recently have the possible effects of AβOs on astrocytes begun to be investigated. Given the key roles of astrocytes in synapse formation, plasticity, and function, we sought to investigate the impact of AβOs on astrocytes, and to determine whether this impact is related to the deleterious actions of AβOs on synapses. We found that AβOs interact with astrocytes, cause astrocyte activation and trigger abnormal generation of reactive oxygen species, which is accompanied by impairment of astrocyte neuroprotective potential in vitro We further show that both murine and human astrocyte conditioned media (CM) increase synapse density, reduce AβOs binding, and prevent AβO-induced synapse loss in cultured hippocampal neurons. Both a neutralizing anti-transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) antibody and siRNA-mediated knockdown of TGF-β1, previously identified as an important synaptogenic factor secreted by astrocytes, abrogated the protective action of astrocyte CM against AβO-induced synapse loss. Notably, TGF-β1 prevented hippocampal dendritic spine loss and memory impairment in mice that received an intracerebroventricular infusion of AβOs. Results suggest that astrocyte-derived TGF-β1 is part of an endogenous mechanism that protects synapses against AβOs. By demonstrating that AβOs decrease astrocyte ability to protect synapses, our results unravel a new mechanism underlying the synaptotoxic action of AβOs in AD. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Alzheimer's disease is characterized by progressive cognitive decline, mainly attributed to synaptotoxicity of the amyloid-β oligomers (AβOs). Here, we investigated the impact of AβOs in astrocytes, a less known subject. We show that astrocytes prevent synapse loss induced by A

  14. A comparative transcriptomic analysis of astrocytes differentiation from human neural progenitor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magistri, Marco; Khoury, Nathalie; Mazza, Emilia Maria Cristina; Velmeshev, Dmitry; Lee, Jae K; Bicciato, Silvio; Tsoulfas, Pantelis; Faghihi, Mohammad Ali

    2016-11-01

    Astrocytes are a morphologically and functionally heterogeneous population of cells that play critical roles in neurodevelopment and in the regulation of central nervous system homeostasis. Studies of human astrocytes have been hampered by the lack of specific molecular markers and by the difficulties associated with purifying and culturing astrocytes from adult human brains. Human neural progenitor cells (NPCs) with self-renewal and multipotent properties represent an appealing model system to gain insight into the developmental genetics and function of human astrocytes, but a comprehensive molecular characterization that confirms the validity of this cellular system is still missing. Here we used an unbiased transcriptomic analysis to characterize in vitro culture of human NPCs and to define the gene expression programs activated during the differentiation of these cells into astrocytes using FBS or the combination of CNTF and BMP4. Our results demonstrate that in vitro cultures of human NPCs isolated during the gliogenic phase of neurodevelopment mainly consist of radial glial cells (RGCs) and glia-restricted progenitor cells. In these cells the combination of CNTF and BMP4 activates the JAK/STAT and SMAD signaling cascades, leading to the inhibition of oligodendrocytes lineage commitment and activation of astrocytes differentiation. On the other hand, FBS-derived astrocytes have properties of reactive astrocytes. Our work suggests that in vitro culture of human NPCs represents a valuable cellular system to study human disorders characterized by impairment of astrocytes development and function. Our datasets represent an important resource for researchers studying human astrocytes development and might set the basis for the discovery of novel human-specific astrocyte markers. © 2016 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience published by Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Effect of 8-bromo-cAMP and dexamethasone on glutamate metabolism in rat astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zielke, H.R.; Tildon, J.T.; Landry, M.E.; Max, S.R.

    1990-01-01

    Glutamine synthetase (GS) activity in cultured rat astrocytes was measured in extracts and compared to the intracellular rate of glutamine synthesis by intact control astrocytes or astrocytes exposed to 1 mM 8-bromo-cAMP (8Br-cAMP) + 1 microM dexamethasone (DEX) for 4 days. GS activity in extracts of astrocytes treated with 8Br-cAMP + DEX was 7.5 times greater than the activity in extracts of control astrocytes. In contrast, the intracellular rate of glutamine synthesis by intact cells increased only 2-fold, suggesting that additional intracellular effectors regulate the expression of GS activity inside the intact cell. The rate of glutamine synthesis by astrocytes was 4.3 times greater in MEM than in HEPES buffered Hank's salts. Synthesis of glutamine by intact astrocytes cultured in MEM was independent of the external glutamine or ammonia concentrations but was increased by higher extracellular glutamate concentrations. In studies with intact astrocytes 80% of the original [U- 14 C]glutamate was recovered in the medium as radioactive glutamine, 2-3% as aspartate, and 7% as glutamate after 2 hours for both control and treated astrocytes. The results suggest: (1) astrocytes are highly efficient in the conversion of glutamate to glutamine; (2) induction of GS activity increases the rate of glutamate conversion to glutamine by astrocytes and the rate of glutamine release into the medium; (3) endogenous intracellular regulators of GS activity control the flux of glutamate through this enzymatic reaction; and (4) the composition of the medium alters the rate of glutamine synthesis from external glutamate

  16. Prostaglandin E2 released from activated microglia enhances astrocyte proliferation in vitro

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang Dan; Hu Xiaoming; Qian Li; Wilson, Belinda; Lee, Christopher; Flood, Patrick; Langenbach, Robert; Hong, J.-S.

    2009-01-01

    Microglial activation has been implicated in many astrogliosis-related pathological conditions including astroglioma; however, the detailed mechanism is not clear. In this study, we used primary enriched microglia and astrocyte cultures to determine the role of microglial prostaglandin E 2 (PGE 2 ) in the proliferation of astrocytes. The proliferation of astrocytes was measured by BrdU incorporation. The level of PGE 2 was measured by ELISA method. Pharmacological inhibition or genetic ablation of COX-2 in microglia were also applied in this study. We found that proliferation of astrocytes increased following lipopolysaccharide (LPS) treatment in the presence of microglia. Furthermore, increased proliferation of astrocytes was observed in the presence of conditioned media from LPS-treated microglia. The potential involvement of microglial PGE 2 in enhanced astrocyte proliferation was suggested by the findings that PGE 2 production and COX-2 expression in microglia were increased by LPS treatment. In addition, activated microglia-induced increases in astrocyte proliferation were blocked by the PGE 2 antagonist AH6809, COX-2 selective inhibitor DuP-697 or by genetic knockout of microglial COX-2. These findings were further supported by the finding that addition of PGE 2 to the media significantly induced astrocyte proliferation. These results indicate that microglial PGE 2 plays an important role in astrocyte proliferation, identifying PGE 2 as a key neuroinflammatory molecule that triggers the pathological response related to uncontrollable astrocyte proliferation. These findings are important in elucidating the role of activated microglia and PGE 2 in astrocyte proliferation and in suggesting a potential avenue in the use of anti-inflammatory agents for the therapy of astroglioma.

  17. Diazinon and diazoxon impair the ability of astrocytes to foster neurite outgrowth in primary hippocampal neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pizzurro, Daniella M.; Dao, Khoi; Costa, Lucio G.

    2014-01-01

    Evidence from in vivo and epidemiological studies suggests that organophosphorus insecticides (OPs) are developmental neurotoxicants, but possible underlying mechanisms are still unclear. Astrocytes are increasingly recognized for their active role in normal neuronal development. This study sought to investigate whether the widely-used OP diazinon (DZ), and its oxygen metabolite diazoxon (DZO), would affect glial–neuronal interactions as a potential mechanism of developmental neurotoxicity. Specifically, we investigated the effects of DZ and DZO on the ability of astrocytes to foster neurite outgrowth in primary hippocampal neurons. The results show that both DZ and DZO adversely affect astrocyte function, resulting in inhibited neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. This effect appears to be mediated by oxidative stress, as indicated by OP-induced increased reactive oxygen species production in astrocytes and prevention of neurite outgrowth inhibition by antioxidants. The concentrations of OPs were devoid of cytotoxicity, and cause limited acetylcholinesterase inhibition in astrocytes (18 and 25% for DZ and DZO, respectively). Among astrocytic neuritogenic factors, the most important one is the extracellular matrix protein fibronectin. DZ and DZO decreased levels of fibronectin in astrocytes, and this effect was also attenuated by antioxidants. Underscoring the importance of fibronectin in this context, adding exogenous fibronectin to the co-culture system successfully prevented inhibition of neurite outgrowth caused by DZ and DZO. These results indicate that DZ and DZO increase oxidative stress in astrocytes, and this in turn modulates astrocytic fibronectin, leading to impaired neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. - Highlights: • DZ and DZO inhibit astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth in rat hippocampal neurons. • Oxidative stress is involved in inhibition of neuritogenesis by DZ and DZO. • DZ and DZO decrease expression of the neuritogenic

  18. Cleavage of Hyaluronan and CD44 Adhesion Molecule Regulate Astrocyte Morphology via Rac1 Signalling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Konopka

    Full Text Available Communication of cells with their extracellular environment is crucial to fulfill their function in physiological and pathophysiological conditions. The literature data provide evidence that such a communication is also important in case of astrocytes. Mechanisms that contribute to the interaction between astrocytes and extracellular matrix (ECM proteins are still poorly understood. Hyaluronan is the main component of ECM in the brain, where its major receptor protein CD44 is expressed by a subset of astrocytes. Considering the fact that functions of astrocytes are tightly coupled with changes in their morphology (e.g.: glutamate clearance in the synaptic cleft, migration, astrogliosis, we investigated the influence of hyaluronan cleavage by hyaluronidase, knockdown of CD44 by specific shRNA and CD44 overexpression on astrocyte morphology. Our results show that hyaluronidase treatment, as well as knockdown of CD44, in astrocytes result in a "stellate"-like morphology, whereas overexpression of CD44 causes an increase in cell body size and changes the shape of astrocytes into flattened cells. Moreover, as a dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is supposed to be responsible for morphological changes of cells, and this reorganization is controlled by small GTPases of the Rho family, we hypothesized that GTPase Rac1 acts as a downstream effector for hyaluronan and CD44 in astrocytes. We used FRET-based biosensor and a dominant negative mutant of Rac1 to investigate the involvement of Rac1 activity in hyaluronidase- and CD44-dependent morphological changes of astrocytes. Both, hyaluronidase treatment and knockdown of CD44, enhances Rac1 activity while overexpression of CD44 reduces the activity state in astrocytes. Furthermore, morphological changes were blocked by specific inhibition of Rac1 activity. These findings indicate for the first time that regulation of Rac1 activity is responsible for hyaluronidase and CD44-driven morphological

  19. Cleavage of Hyaluronan and CD44 Adhesion Molecule Regulate Astrocyte Morphology via Rac1 Signalling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konopka, Anna; Zeug, Andre; Skupien, Anna; Kaza, Beata; Mueller, Franziska; Chwedorowicz, Agnieszka; Ponimaskin, Evgeni; Wilczynski, Grzegorz M; Dzwonek, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    Communication of cells with their extracellular environment is crucial to fulfill their function in physiological and pathophysiological conditions. The literature data provide evidence that such a communication is also important in case of astrocytes. Mechanisms that contribute to the interaction between astrocytes and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins are still poorly understood. Hyaluronan is the main component of ECM in the brain, where its major receptor protein CD44 is expressed by a subset of astrocytes. Considering the fact that functions of astrocytes are tightly coupled with changes in their morphology (e.g.: glutamate clearance in the synaptic cleft, migration, astrogliosis), we investigated the influence of hyaluronan cleavage by hyaluronidase, knockdown of CD44 by specific shRNA and CD44 overexpression on astrocyte morphology. Our results show that hyaluronidase treatment, as well as knockdown of CD44, in astrocytes result in a "stellate"-like morphology, whereas overexpression of CD44 causes an increase in cell body size and changes the shape of astrocytes into flattened cells. Moreover, as a dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is supposed to be responsible for morphological changes of cells, and this reorganization is controlled by small GTPases of the Rho family, we hypothesized that GTPase Rac1 acts as a downstream effector for hyaluronan and CD44 in astrocytes. We used FRET-based biosensor and a dominant negative mutant of Rac1 to investigate the involvement of Rac1 activity in hyaluronidase- and CD44-dependent morphological changes of astrocytes. Both, hyaluronidase treatment and knockdown of CD44, enhances Rac1 activity while overexpression of CD44 reduces the activity state in astrocytes. Furthermore, morphological changes were blocked by specific inhibition of Rac1 activity. These findings indicate for the first time that regulation of Rac1 activity is responsible for hyaluronidase and CD44-driven morphological changes of

  20. Paracrine effect of carbon monoxide - astrocytes promote neuroprotection through purinergic signaling in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queiroga, Cláudia S F; Alves, Raquel M A; Conde, Sílvia V; Alves, Paula M; Vieira, Helena L A

    2016-08-15

    The neuroprotective role of carbon monoxide (CO) has been studied in a cell-autonomous mode. Herein, a new concept is disclosed - CO affects astrocyte-neuron communication in a paracrine manner to promote neuroprotection. Neuronal survival was assessed when co-cultured with astrocytes that had been pre-treated or not with CO. The CO-pre-treated astrocytes reduced neuronal cell death, and the cellular mechanisms were investigated, focusing on purinergic signaling. CO modulates astrocytic metabolism and extracellular ATP content in the co-culture medium. Moreover, several antagonists of P1 adenosine and P2 ATP receptors partially reverted CO-induced neuroprotection through astrocytes. Likewise, knocking down expression of the neuronal P1 adenosine receptor A2A-R (encoded by Adora2a) reverted the neuroprotective effects of CO-exposed astrocytes. The neuroprotection of CO-treated astrocytes also decreased following prevention of ATP or adenosine release from astrocytic cells and inhibition of extracellular ATP metabolism into adenosine. Finally, the neuronal downstream event involves TrkB (also known as NTRK2) receptors and BDNF. Pharmacological and genetic inhibition of TrkB receptors reverts neuroprotection triggered by CO-treated astrocytes. Furthermore, the neuronal ratio of BDNF to pro-BDNF increased in the presence of CO-treated astrocytes and decreased whenever A2A-R expression was silenced. In summary, CO prevents neuronal cell death in a paracrine manner by targeting astrocytic metabolism through purinergic signaling. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  1. Diazinon and diazoxon impair the ability of astrocytes to foster neurite outgrowth in primary hippocampal neurons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pizzurro, Daniella M.; Dao, Khoi [Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States); Costa, Lucio G. [Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA (United States); Department of Neuroscience, University of Parma, Parma (Italy)

    2014-02-01

    Evidence from in vivo and epidemiological studies suggests that organophosphorus insecticides (OPs) are developmental neurotoxicants, but possible underlying mechanisms are still unclear. Astrocytes are increasingly recognized for their active role in normal neuronal development. This study sought to investigate whether the widely-used OP diazinon (DZ), and its oxygen metabolite diazoxon (DZO), would affect glial–neuronal interactions as a potential mechanism of developmental neurotoxicity. Specifically, we investigated the effects of DZ and DZO on the ability of astrocytes to foster neurite outgrowth in primary hippocampal neurons. The results show that both DZ and DZO adversely affect astrocyte function, resulting in inhibited neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. This effect appears to be mediated by oxidative stress, as indicated by OP-induced increased reactive oxygen species production in astrocytes and prevention of neurite outgrowth inhibition by antioxidants. The concentrations of OPs were devoid of cytotoxicity, and cause limited acetylcholinesterase inhibition in astrocytes (18 and 25% for DZ and DZO, respectively). Among astrocytic neuritogenic factors, the most important one is the extracellular matrix protein fibronectin. DZ and DZO decreased levels of fibronectin in astrocytes, and this effect was also attenuated by antioxidants. Underscoring the importance of fibronectin in this context, adding exogenous fibronectin to the co-culture system successfully prevented inhibition of neurite outgrowth caused by DZ and DZO. These results indicate that DZ and DZO increase oxidative stress in astrocytes, and this in turn modulates astrocytic fibronectin, leading to impaired neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. - Highlights: • DZ and DZO inhibit astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth in rat hippocampal neurons. • Oxidative stress is involved in inhibition of neuritogenesis by DZ and DZO. • DZ and DZO decrease expression of the neuritogenic

  2. Recombination events and variability among full-length genomes of co-circulating molluscum contagiosum virus subtypes 1 and 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Bueno, Alberto; Parras-Moltó, Marcos; López-Barrantes, Olivia; Belda, Sylvia; Alejo, Alí

    2017-05-01

    Molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV) is the sole member of the Molluscipoxvirus genus and causes a highly prevalent human disease of the skin characterized by the formation of a variable number of lesions that can persist for prolonged periods of time. Two major genotypes, subtype 1 and subtype 2, are recognized, although currently only a single complete genomic sequence corresponding to MCV subtype 1 is available. Using next-generation sequencing techniques, we report the complete genomic sequence of four new MCV isolates, including the first one derived from a subtype 2. Comparisons suggest a relatively distant evolutionary split between both MCV subtypes. Further, our data illustrate concurrent circulation of distinct viruses within a population and reveal the existence of recombination events among them. These results help identify a set of MCV genes with potentially relevant roles in molluscum contagiosum epidemiology and pathogenesis.

  3. An evolutionary model-based algorithm for accurate phylogenetic breakpoint mapping and subtype prediction in HIV-1.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergei L Kosakovsky Pond

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Genetically diverse pathogens (such as Human Immunodeficiency virus type 1, HIV-1 are frequently stratified into phylogenetically or immunologically defined subtypes for classification purposes. Computational identification of such subtypes is helpful in surveillance, epidemiological analysis and detection of novel variants, e.g., circulating recombinant forms in HIV-1. A number of conceptually and technically different techniques have been proposed for determining the subtype of a query sequence, but there is not a universally optimal approach. We present a model-based phylogenetic method for automatically subtyping an HIV-1 (or other viral or bacterial sequence, mapping the location of breakpoints and assigning parental sequences in recombinant strains as well as computing confidence levels for the inferred quantities. Our Subtype Classification Using Evolutionary ALgorithms (SCUEAL procedure is shown to perform very well in a variety of simulation scenarios, runs in parallel when multiple sequences are being screened, and matches or exceeds the performance of existing approaches on typical empirical cases. We applied SCUEAL to all available polymerase (pol sequences from two large databases, the Stanford Drug Resistance database and the UK HIV Drug Resistance Database. Comparing with subtypes which had previously been assigned revealed that a minor but substantial (approximately 5% fraction of pure subtype sequences may in fact be within- or inter-subtype recombinants. A free implementation of SCUEAL is provided as a module for the HyPhy package and the Datamonkey web server. Our method is especially useful when an accurate automatic classification of an unknown strain is desired, and is positioned to complement and extend faster but less accurate methods. Given the increasingly frequent use of HIV subtype information in studies focusing on the effect of subtype on treatment, clinical outcome, pathogenicity and vaccine design, the importance

  4. Costimulation of N-methyl-d-aspartate and muscarinic neuronal receptors modulates gap junctional communication in striatal astrocytes

    OpenAIRE

    Rouach, N.; Tencé, M.; Glowinski, J.; Giaume, C.

    2002-01-01

    Cocultures of neurons and astrocytes from the rat striatum were used to determine whether the stimulation of neuronal receptors could affect the level of intercellular communication mediated by gap junctions in astrocytes. The costimulation of N-methyl-D-asparte (NMDA) and muscarinic receptors led to a prominent reduction of astrocyte gap junctional communication (GJC) in coculture. This treatment was not effective in astrocyte cultures, these cells being devoid of NMDA receptors. Both types ...

  5. Evidence for a Role of Proline and Hypothalamic Astrocytes in the Regulation of Glucose Metabolism in Rats

    OpenAIRE

    Arrieta-Cruz, Isabel; Su, Ya; Knight, Colette M.; Lam, Tony K.T.; Gutiérrez-Juárez, Roger

    2013-01-01

    The metabolism of lactate to pyruvate in the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH) regulates hepatic glucose production. Because astrocytes and neurons are functionally linked by metabolic coupling through lactate transfer via the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS), we reasoned that astrocytes might be involved in the hypothalamic regulation of glucose metabolism. To examine this possibility, we used the gluconeogenic amino acid proline, which is metabolized to pyruvate in astrocytes. Our result...

  6. Glutamate metabolism is down-regulated in astrocytes during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hardin-Pouzet, H; Krakowski, M; Bourbonnière, L

    1997-01-01

    dehydrogenase (GDH) expression were dramatically reduced. These two astrocytic enzymes are responsible for degradation of glutamate, the most abundant excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. Since elevated levels of glutamate may be neurotoxic, we propose that the decreased capacity of astrocytes...... to metabolize glutamate may contribute to EAE pathology....

  7. Protein targeting to glycogen is a master regulator of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Ruchti, E.

    2016-10-08

    The storage and use of glycogen, the main energy reserve in the brain, is a metabolic feature of astrocytes. Glycogen synthesis is regulated by Protein Targeting to Glycogen (PTG), a member of specific glycogen-binding subunits of protein phosphatase-1 (PPP1). It positively regulates glycogen synthesis through de-phosphorylation of both glycogen synthase (activation) and glycogen phosphorylase (inactivation). In cultured astrocytes, PTG mRNA levels were previously shown to be enhanced by the neurotransmitter noradrenaline. To achieve further insight into the role of PTG in the regulation of astrocytic glycogen, its levels of expression were manipulated in primary cultures of mouse cortical astrocytes using adenovirus-mediated overexpression of tagged-PTG or siRNA to downregulate its expression. Infection of astrocytes with adenovirus led to a strong increase in PTG expression and was associated with massive glycogen accumulation (>100 fold), demonstrating that increased PTG expression is sufficient to induce glycogen synthesis and accumulation. In contrast, siRNA-mediated downregulation of PTG resulted in a 2-fold decrease in glycogen levels. Interestingly, PTG downregulation strongly impaired long-term astrocytic glycogen synthesis induced by insulin or noradrenaline. Finally, these effects of PTG downregulation on glycogen metabolism could also be observed in cultured astrocytes isolated from PTG-KO mice. Collectively, these observations point to a major role of PTG in the regulation of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes and indicate that conditions leading to changes in PTG expression will directly impact glycogen levels in this cell type.

  8. In Vivo Evidence for a Lactate Gradient from Astrocytes to Neurons

    KAUST Repository

    Mä chler, Philipp; Wyss, Matthias  T.; Elsayed, Maha; Stobart, Jillian; Gutierrez, Robin; von  Faber-Castell, Alexandra; Kaelin, Vincens; Zuend, Marc; San  Martí n, Alejandro; Romero-Gó mez, Ignacio; Baeza-Lehnert, Felipe; Lengacher, Sylvain; Schneider, Bernard  L.; Aebischer, Patrick; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Barros, L.  Felipe; Weber, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Investigating lactate dynamics in brain tissue is challenging, partly because in vivo data at cellular resolution are not available. We monitored lactate in cortical astrocytes and neurons of mice using the genetically encoded FRET sensor Laconic in combination with two-photon microscopy. An intravenous lactate injection rapidly increased the Laconic signal in both astrocytes and neurons, demonstrating high lactate permeability across tissue. The signal increase was significantly smaller in astrocytes, pointing to higher basal lactate levels in these cells, confirmed by a one-point calibration protocol. Trans-acceleration of the monocarboxylate transporter with pyruvate was able to reduce intracellular lactate in astrocytes but not in neurons. Collectively, these data provide in vivo evidence for a lactate gradient from astrocytes to neurons. This gradient is a prerequisite for a carrier-mediated lactate flux from astrocytes to neurons and thus supports the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle model, in which astrocyte-derived lactate acts as an energy substrate for neurons. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

  9. Phosphorylation status of pyruvate dehydrogenase distinguishes metabolic phenotypes of cultured rat brain astrocytes and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halim, Nader D; Mcfate, Thomas; Mohyeldin, Ahmed; Okagaki, Peter; Korotchkina, Lioubov G; Patel, Mulchand S; Jeoung, Nam Ho; Harris, Robert A; Schell, Michael J; Verma, Ajay

    2010-08-01

    Glucose metabolism in nervous tissue has been proposed to occur in a compartmentalized manner with astrocytes contributing largely to glycolysis and neurons being the primary site of glucose oxidation. However, mammalian astrocytes and neurons both contain mitochondria, and it remains unclear why in culture neurons oxidize glucose, lactate, and pyruvate to a much larger extent than astrocytes. The objective of this study was to determine whether pyruvate metabolism is differentially regulated in cultured neurons versus astrocytes. Expression of all components of the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDC), the rate-limiting step for pyruvate entry into the Krebs cycle, was determined in cultured astrocytes and neurons. In addition, regulation of PDC enzymatic activity in the two cell types via protein phosphorylation was examined. We show that all components of the PDC are expressed in both cell types in culture, but that PDC activity is kept strongly inhibited in astrocytes through phosphorylation of the pyruvate dehydrogenase alpha subunit (PDH alpha). In contrast, neuronal PDC operates close to maximal levels with much lower levels of phosphorylated PDH alpha. Dephosphorylation of astrocytic PDH alpha restores PDC activity and lowers lactate production. Our findings suggest that the glucose metabolism of astrocytes and neurons may be far more flexible than previously believed. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  10. Long-term culture of astrocytes attenuates the readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroyuki Kawano

    Full Text Available The astrocyte is a major glial cell type of the brain, and plays key roles in the formation, maturation, stabilization and elimination of synapses. Thus, changes in astrocyte condition and age can influence information processing at synapses. However, whether and how aging astrocytes affect synaptic function and maturation have not yet been thoroughly investigated. Here, we show the effects of prolonged culture on the ability of astrocytes to induce synapse formation and to modify synaptic transmission, using cultured autaptic neurons. By 9 weeks in culture, astrocytes derived from the mouse cerebral cortex demonstrated increases in β-galactosidase activity and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP expression, both of which are characteristic of aging and glial activation in vitro. Autaptic hippocampal neurons plated on these aging astrocytes showed a smaller amount of evoked release of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate, and a lower frequency of miniature release of glutamate, both of which were attributable to a reduction in the pool of readily releasable synaptic vesicles. Other features of synaptogenesis and synaptic transmission were retained, for example the ability to induce structural synapses, the presynaptic release probability, the fraction of functional presynaptic nerve terminals, and the ability to recruit functional AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors to synapses. Thus the presence of aging astrocytes affects the efficiency of synaptic transmission. Given that the pool of readily releasable vesicles is also small at immature synapses, our results are consistent with astrocytic aging leading to retarded synapse maturation.

  11. Exercise counteracts aging-related memory impairment: a potential role for the astrocytic metabolic shuttle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng-Feng eTsai

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Age-related cognitive impairment has become one of the most common health threats in many countries. The biological substrate of cognition is the interconnection of neurons to form complex information processing networks. Experience-based alterations in the activities of these information processing networks lead to neuroadaptation, which is physically represented at the cellular level as synaptic plasticity. Although synaptic plasticity is known to be affected by aging, the underlying molecular mechanisms are not well described. Astrocytes, a glial cell type that is infrequently investigated in cognitive science, have emerged as energy suppliers which are necessary for meeting the abundant energy demand resulting from glutamatergic synaptic activity. Moreover, the concerted action of an astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttle is essential for cognitive function; whereas, energetic incoordination between astrocytes and neurons may contribute to cognitive impairment. Whether altered function of the astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttle links aging to reduced synaptic plasticity is unexplored. However, accumulated evidence documents significant beneficial effects of long-term, regular exercise on cognition and synaptic plasticity. Furthermore, exercise increases the effectiveness of astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttle by upregulation of astrocytic lactate transporter levels. This review summarizes previous findings related to the neuronal activity-dependent astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttle. Moreover, we discuss how aging and exercise may shape the astrocyte-neuron metabolic shuttle in cognition-associated brain areas.

  12. Astrocytes from adult Wistar rats aged in vitro show changes in glial functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Débora Guerini; Bellaver, Bruna; Raupp, Gustavo Santos; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2015-11-01

    Astrocytes, the most versatile cells of the central nervous system, play an important role in the regulation of neurotransmitter homeostasis, energy metabolism, antioxidant defenses and the anti-inflammatory response. Recently, our group characterized cortical astrocyte cultures from adult Wistar rats. In line with that work, we studied glial function using an experimental in vitro model of aging astrocytes (30 days in vitro after reaching confluence) from newborn (NB), adult (AD) and aged (AG) Wistar rats. We evaluated metabolic parameters, such as the glucose uptake, glutamine synthetase (GS) activity, and glutathione (GSH) content, as well as the GFAP, GLUT-1 and xCT expression. AD and AG astrocytes take up less glucose than NB astrocytes and had decreased GLUT1 expression levels. Furthermore, AD and AG astrocytes exhibited decreased GS activity compared to NB cells. Simultaneously, AD and AG astrocytes showed an increase in GSH levels, along with an increase in xCT expression. NB, AD and AG astrocytes presented similar morphology; however, differences in GFAP levels were observed. Taken together, these results improve the knowledge of cerebral senescence and represent an innovative tool for brain studies of aging. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. MUSCARINIC ACETYLCHOLINE RECEPTOR-EXPRESSION IN ASTROCYTES IN THE CORTEX OF YOUNG AND AGED RATS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    VANDERZEE, EA; DEJONG, GI; STROSBERG, AD; LUITEN, PGM

    The present report describes the cellular and subcellular distribution pattern of immunoreactivity to M35, a monoclonal antibody raised against purified muscarinic acetylcholine receptor protein, in astrocytes in the cerebral cortex of young and aged rats. Most M35-positive astrocytes were localized

  14. Differentiation of Inflammation-Responsive Astrocytes from Glial Progenitors Generated from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renata Santos

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Astrocyte dysfunction and neuroinflammation are detrimental features in multiple pathologies of the CNS. Therefore, the development of methods that produce functional human astrocytes represents an advance in the study of neurological diseases. Here we report an efficient method for inflammation-responsive astrocyte generation from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs and embryonic stem cells. This protocol uses an intermediate glial progenitor stage and generates functional astrocytes that show levels of glutamate uptake and calcium activation comparable with those observed in human primary astrocytes. Stimulation of stem cell-derived astrocytes with interleukin-1β or tumor necrosis factor α elicits a strong and rapid pro-inflammatory response. RNA-sequencing transcriptome profiling confirmed that similar gene expression changes occurred in iPSC-derived and primary astrocytes upon stimulation with interleukin-1β. This protocol represents an important tool for modeling in-a-dish neurological diseases with an inflammatory component, allowing for the investigation of the role of diseased astrocytes in neuronal degeneration.

  15. Differentiation of Inflammation-Responsive Astrocytes from Glial Progenitors Generated from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Renata; Vadodaria, Krishna C; Jaeger, Baptiste N; Mei, Arianna; Lefcochilos-Fogelquist, Sabrina; Mendes, Ana P D; Erikson, Galina; Shokhirev, Maxim; Randolph-Moore, Lynne; Fredlender, Callie; Dave, Sonia; Oefner, Ruth; Fitzpatrick, Conor; Pena, Monique; Barron, Jerika J; Ku, Manching; Denli, Ahmet M; Kerman, Bilal E; Charnay, Patrick; Kelsoe, John R; Marchetto, Maria C; Gage, Fred H

    2017-06-06

    Astrocyte dysfunction and neuroinflammation are detrimental features in multiple pathologies of the CNS. Therefore, the development of methods that produce functional human astrocytes represents an advance in the study of neurological diseases. Here we report an efficient method for inflammation-responsive astrocyte generation from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and embryonic stem cells. This protocol uses an intermediate glial progenitor stage and generates functional astrocytes that show levels of glutamate uptake and calcium activation comparable with those observed in human primary astrocytes. Stimulation of stem cell-derived astrocytes with interleukin-1β or tumor necrosis factor α elicits a strong and rapid pro-inflammatory response. RNA-sequencing transcriptome profiling confirmed that similar gene expression changes occurred in iPSC-derived and primary astrocytes upon stimulation with interleukin-1β. This protocol represents an important tool for modeling in-a-dish neurological diseases with an inflammatory component, allowing for the investigation of the role of diseased astrocytes in neuronal degeneration. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Hippocampal astrocytes are necessary for antidepressant treatment of learned helplessness rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwata, Masaaki; Shirayama, Yukihiko; Ishida, Hisahito; Hazama, Gen-i; Nakagome, Kazuyuki

    2011-08-01

    The astrocyte is a major component of the neural network and plays a role in brain function. Previous studies demonstrated changes in the number of astrocytes in depression. In this study, we examined alterations in the number of astrocytes in the learned helplessness (LH) rat, an animal model of depression. The numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes in the dentate gyrus (molecular layer, subgranular zone, and hilus), and CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus were significantly increased 2 and 8 days after attainment of LH. Subchronic treatment with imipramine showed a tendency (although not statistically significant) to decrease the LH-induced increment of activated astrocytes in the CA3 region and dentate gyrus. Furthermore, subchronic treatment of naïve rats with imipramine did not alter the numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes. However, the antidepressant-like effects of imipramine in the LH paradigm were blocked when fluorocitrate (a reversible inhibitor of astrocyte function) was injected into the dentate gyrus or CA3 region. Injection of fluorocitrate into naive rats failed to induce behavioral deficits in the conditioned avoidance test. These results indicate that astrocytes are responsive to the antidepressant-like effect of imipramine in the dentate gyrus and CA3 region of the hippocampus. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  17. Neuron to astrocyte communication via cannabinoid receptors is necessary for sustained epileptiform activity in rat hippocampus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guyllaume Coiret

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are integral functional components of synapses, regulating transmission and plasticity. They have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, although their precise roles have not been comprehensively characterized. Astrocytes integrate activity from neighboring synapses by responding to neuronally released neurotransmitters such as glutamate and ATP. Strong activation of astrocytes mediated by these neurotransmitters can promote seizure-like activity by initiating a positive feedback loop that induces excessive neuronal discharge. Recent work has demonstrated that astrocytes express cannabinoid 1 (CB1 receptors, which are sensitive to endocannabinoids released by nearby pyramidal cells. In this study, we tested whether this mechanism also contributes to epileptiform activity. In a model of 4-aminopyridine induced epileptic-like activity in hippocampal slice cultures, we show that pharmacological blockade of astrocyte CB1 receptors did not modify the initiation, but significantly reduced the maintenance of epileptiform discharge. When communication in astrocytic networks was disrupted by chelating astrocytic calcium, this CB1 receptor-mediated modulation of epileptiform activity was no longer observed. Thus, endocannabinoid signaling from neurons to astrocytes represents an additional significant factor in the maintenance of epileptiform activity in the hippocampus.

  18. IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes protects from autoimmune mediated neurological disability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Hindinger

    Full Text Available Demyelination and axonal degeneration are determinants of progressive neurological disability in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS. Cells resident within the central nervous system (CNS are active participants in development, progression and subsequent control of autoimmune disease; however, their individual contributions are not well understood. Astrocytes, the most abundant CNS cell type, are highly sensitive to environmental cues and are implicated in both detrimental and protective outcomes during autoimmune demyelination. Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE was induced in transgenic mice expressing signaling defective dominant-negative interferon gamma (IFN-γ receptors on astrocytes to determine the influence of inflammation on astrocyte activity. Inhibition of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes did not influence disease incidence, onset, initial progression of symptoms, blood brain barrier (BBB integrity or the composition of the acute CNS inflammatory response. Nevertheless, increased demyelination at peak acute disease in the absence of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes correlated with sustained clinical symptoms. Following peak disease, diminished clinical remission, increased mortality and sustained astrocyte activation within the gray matter demonstrate a critical role of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes in neuroprotection. Diminished disease remission was associated with escalating demyelination, axonal degeneration and sustained inflammation. The CNS infiltrating leukocyte composition was not altered; however, decreased IL-10 and IL-27 correlated with sustained disease. These data indicate that astrocytes play a critical role in limiting CNS autoimmune disease dependent upon a neuroprotective signaling pathway mediated by engagement of IFN-γ receptors.

  19. Ca2+ Entry is Required for Mechanical Stimulation-induced ATP Release from Astrocyte

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jaekwang; Chun, Ye-Eun; Han, Kyung-Seok; Lee, Jungmoo; Woo, Dong Ho

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes and neurons are inseparable partners in the brain. Neurotransmitters released from neurons activate corresponding G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) expressed in astrocytes, resulting in release of gliotransmitters such as glutamate, D-serine, and ATP. These gliotransmitters in turn influence neuronal excitability and synaptic activities. Among these gliotransmitters, ATP regulates the level of network excitability and is critically involved in sleep homeostasis and astrocytic Ca2+ oscillations. ATP is known to be released from astrocytes by Ca2+-dependent manner. However, the precise source of Ca2+, whether it is Ca2+ entry from outside of cell or from the intracellular store, is still not clear yet. Here, we performed sniffer patch to detect ATP release from astrocyte by using various stimulation. We found that ATP was not released from astrocyte when Ca2+ was released from intracellular stores by activation of Gαq-coupled GPCR including PAR1, P2YR, and B2R. More importantly, mechanical stimulation (MS)-induced ATP release from astrocyte was eliminated when external Ca2+ was omitted. Our results suggest that Ca2+ entry, but not release from intracellular Ca2+ store, is critical for MS-induced ATP release from astrocyte. PMID:25792866

  20. Astrocyte lipid metabolism is critical for synapse development and function in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Deijk, Anne-Lieke F; Camargo, Nutabi; Timmerman, Jaap; Heistek, Tim; Brouwers, Jos F; Mogavero, Floriana; Mansvelder, Huibert D; Smit, August B; Verheijen, Mark H G

    2017-04-01

    The brain is considered to be autonomous in lipid synthesis with astrocytes producing lipids far more efficiently than neurons. Accordingly, it is generally assumed that astrocyte-derived lipids are taken up by neurons to support synapse formation and function. Initial confirmation of this assumption has been obtained in cell cultures, but whether astrocyte-derived lipids support synapses in vivo is not known. Here, we address this issue and determined the role of astrocyte lipid metabolism in hippocampal synapse formation and function in vivo. Hippocampal protein expression for the sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) and its target gene fatty acid synthase (Fasn) was found in astrocytes but not in neurons. Diminishing SREBP activity in astrocytes using mice in which the SREBP cleavage-activating protein (SCAP) was deleted from GFAP-expressing cells resulted in decreased cholesterol and phospholipid secretion by astrocytes. Interestingly, SCAP mutant mice showed more immature synapses, lower presynaptic protein SNAP-25 levels as well as reduced numbers of synaptic vesicles, indicating impaired development of the presynaptic terminal. Accordingly, hippocampal short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity were defective in mutant mice. These findings establish a critical role for astrocyte lipid metabolism in presynaptic terminal development and function in vivo. GLIA 2017;65:670-682. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Proteomic analysis of astrocytic secretion that regulates neurogenesis using quantitative amine-specific isobaric tagging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yan, Hu; Zhou, Wenhao [Children' s Hospital of Fudan University, 399 Wanyuan Road, Shanghai 201102 (China); Wei, Liming; Zhong, Fan [Institutes of Biomedical Sciences, Fudan University, 138 Yixueyuan Roda, Shanghai 200032 (China); Yang, Yi, E-mail: yyang@shmu.edu.cn [Children' s Hospital of Fudan University, 399 Wanyuan Road, Shanghai 201102 (China)

    2010-01-08

    Astrocytes are essential components of neurogenic niches that affect neurogenesis through membrane association and/or the release of soluble factors. To identify factors released from astrocytes that could regulate neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation, we used mild oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) to inhibit the secretory capacity of astrocytes. Using the Transwell co-culture system, we found that OGD-treated astrocytes could not promote neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation. Next, isobaric tagging for the relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) proteomics techniques was performed to identify the proteins in the supernatants of astrocytes (with or without OGD). Through a multi-step analysis and gene ontology classification, 130 extracellular proteins were identified, most of which were involved in neuronal development, the inflammatory response, extracellular matrix composition and supportive functions. Of these proteins, 44 had never been reported to be produced by astrocytes. Using ProteinPilot software analysis, we found that 60 extracellular proteins were significantly altered (27 upregulated and 33 downregulated) in the supernatant of OGD-treated astrocytes. Among these proteins, 7 have been reported to be able to regulate neurogenesis, while others may have the potential to regulate neurogenesis. This study profiles the major proteins released by astrocytes, which play important roles in the modulation of neurogenesis.

  2. In Vivo Evidence for a Lactate Gradient from Astrocytes to Neurons

    KAUST Repository

    Mächler, Philipp

    2015-11-19

    Investigating lactate dynamics in brain tissue is challenging, partly because in vivo data at cellular resolution are not available. We monitored lactate in cortical astrocytes and neurons of mice using the genetically encoded FRET sensor Laconic in combination with two-photon microscopy. An intravenous lactate injection rapidly increased the Laconic signal in both astrocytes and neurons, demonstrating high lactate permeability across tissue. The signal increase was significantly smaller in astrocytes, pointing to higher basal lactate levels in these cells, confirmed by a one-point calibration protocol. Trans-acceleration of the monocarboxylate transporter with pyruvate was able to reduce intracellular lactate in astrocytes but not in neurons. Collectively, these data provide in vivo evidence for a lactate gradient from astrocytes to neurons. This gradient is a prerequisite for a carrier-mediated lactate flux from astrocytes to neurons and thus supports the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle model, in which astrocyte-derived lactate acts as an energy substrate for neurons. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

  3. Spinal astrocytic activation contributes to mechanical allodynia in a rat chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xi-Tuan Ji

    Full Text Available Chemotherapy-induced neuropathic pain (CNP is the major dose-limiting factor in cancer chemotherapy. However, the neural mechanisms underlying CNP remain enigmatic. Accumulating evidence implicates the involvement of spinal glia in some neuropathic pain models. In this study, using a vincristine-evoked CNP rat model with obvious mechanical allodynia, we found that spinal astrocyte rather than microglia was dramatically activated. The mechanical allodynia was dose-dependently attenuated by intrathecal administratration of L-α-aminoadipate (astrocytic specific inhibitor; whereas minocycline (microglial specific inhibitor had no such effect, indicating that spinal astrocytic activation contributes to allodynia in CNP rat. Furthermore, oxidative stress mediated the development of spinal astrocytic activation, and activated astrocytes dramatically increased interleukin-1β expression which induced N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor (NMDAR phosphorylation in spinal neurons to strengthen pain transmission. Taken together, our findings suggest that spinal activated astrocytes may be a crucial component of the pathophysiology of CNP and "Astrocyte-Cytokine-NMDAR-neuron" pathway may be one detailed neural mechanisms underlying CNP. Thus, inhibiting spinal astrocytic activation may represent a novel therapeutic strategy for treating CNP.

  4. Reactive Transformation and Increased BDNF Signaling by Hippocampal Astrocytes in Response to MK-801.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenjuan Yu

    Full Text Available MK-801, also known as dizocilpine, is a noncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA receptor antagonist that induces schizophrenia-like symptoms. While astrocytes have been implicated in the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, astrocytic responses to MK-801 and their significance to schizotypic symptoms are unclear. Changes in the expression levels of glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP, a marker of astrocyte activation in response to a variety of pathogenic stimuli, were examined in the hippocampus of rats treated with the repeated MK-801 injection (0.5 mg/10 ml/kg body weight for 6 days and in primary cultured hippocampal astrocytes incubated with MK-801 (5 or 20 μM for 24 h. Moreover, the expression levels of BDNF and its receptors TrkB and p75 were examined in MK-801-treated astrocyte cultures. MK-801 treatment enhanced GFAP expression in the rat hippocampus and also increased the levels of GFAP protein and mRNA in hippocampal astrocytes in vitro. Treatment of cultured hippocampal astrocytes with MK-801 enhanced protein and mRNA levels of BDNF, TrkB, and p75. Collectively, our results suggest that hippocampal astrocytes may contribute to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia symptoms associated with NMDA receptor hypofunction by reactive transformation and altered BDNF signaling.

  5. Complete Neuron-Astrocyte Interaction Model: Digital Multiplierless Design and Networking Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haghiri, Saeed; Ahmadi, Arash; Saif, Mehrdad

    2017-02-01

    Glial cells, also known as neuroglia or glia, are non-neuronal cells providing support and protection for neurons in the central nervous system (CNS). They also act as supportive cells in the brain. Among a variety of glial cells, the star-shaped glial cells, i.e., astrocytes, are the largest cell population in the brain. The important role of astrocyte such as neuronal synchronization, synaptic information regulation, feedback to neural activity and extracellular regulation make the astrocytes play a vital role in brain disease. This paper presents a modified complete neuron-astrocyte interaction model that is more suitable for efficient and large scale biological neural network realization on digital platforms. Simulation results show that the modified complete interaction model can reproduce biological-like behavior of the original neuron-astrocyte mechanism. The modified interaction model is investigated in terms of digital realization feasibility and cost targeting a low cost hardware implementation. Networking behavior of this interaction is investigated and compared between two cases: i) the neuron spiking mechanism without astrocyte effects, and ii) the effect of astrocyte in regulating the neurons behavior and synaptic transmission via controlling the LTP and LTD processes. Hardware implementation on FPGA shows that the modified model mimics the main mechanism of neuron-astrocyte communication with higher performance and considerably lower hardware overhead cost compared with the original interaction model.

  6. Neuron to astrocyte communication via cannabinoid receptors is necessary for sustained epileptiform activity in rat hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coiret, Guyllaume; Ster, Jeanne; Grewe, Benjamin; Wendling, Fabrice; Helmchen, Fritjof; Gerber, Urs; Benquet, Pascal

    2012-01-01

    Astrocytes are integral functional components of synapses, regulating transmission and plasticity. They have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, although their precise roles have not been comprehensively characterized. Astrocytes integrate activity from neighboring synapses by responding to neuronally released neurotransmitters such as glutamate and ATP. Strong activation of astrocytes mediated by these neurotransmitters can promote seizure-like activity by initiating a positive feedback loop that induces excessive neuronal discharge. Recent work has demonstrated that astrocytes express cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors, which are sensitive to endocannabinoids released by nearby pyramidal cells. In this study, we tested whether this mechanism also contributes to epileptiform activity. In a model of 4-aminopyridine induced epileptic-like activity in hippocampal slice cultures, we show that pharmacological blockade of astrocyte CB1 receptors did not modify the initiation, but significantly reduced the maintenance of epileptiform discharge. When communication in astrocytic networks was disrupted by chelating astrocytic calcium, this CB1 receptor-mediated modulation of epileptiform activity was no longer observed. Thus, endocannabinoid signaling from neurons to astrocytes represents an additional significant factor in the maintenance of epileptiform activity in the hippocampus.

  7. Characteristics of calcium signaling in astrocytes induced by photostimulation with femtosecond laser

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yuan; Zhang, Yuan; Zhou, Wei; Liu, Xiuli; Zeng, Shaoqun; Luo, Qingming

    2010-05-01

    Astrocytes have been identified to actively contribute to brain functions through Ca2+ signaling, serving as a bridge to communicate with neurons and other brain cells. However, conventional stimulation techniques are hard to apply to delicate investigations on astrocytes. Our group previously reported photostimulation with a femtosecond laser to evoke astrocytic calcium (Ca2+) waves, providing a noninvasive and efficient approach with highly precise targeting. In this work, detailed characteristics of astrocytic Ca2+ signaling induced by photostimulation are presented. In a purified astrocytic culture, after the illumination of a femtosecond laser onto one cell, a Ca2+ wave throughout the network with reduced speed is induced, and intracellular Ca2+ oscillations are observed. The intercellular propagation is pharmacologically confirmed to be mainly mediated by ATP through P2Y receptors. Different patterns of Ca2+ elevations with increased amplitude in the stimulated astrocyte are discovered by varying the femtosecond laser power, which is correspondingly followed by broader intercellular waves. These indicate that the strength of photogenerated Ca2+ signaling in astrocytes has a positive relationship with the stimulating laser power. Therefore, distinct Ca2+ signaling is feasibly available for specific studies on astrocytes by employing precisely controlled photostimulation.

  8. Cerebral Mast Cells Participate In Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction by Promoting Astrocyte Activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiang; Yao, Hao; Qian, Qingqing; Li, Nana; Jin, Wenjie; Qian, Yanning

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes, the major glial cell type that has been increasingly recognized as contributing to neuroinflammation, are critical in the occurrence and development of postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). Although emerging evidence showed that brain mast cells (MCs) are the "first responders" in neuroinflammation, little is known about the functional communication between MCs and astrocytes. In this study, we investigated the potential regulation of astrocyte activation by MCs. Rats received an intracerebroventricular injection of Cromolyn (an MC stabilizer) or sterile saline 30 min before undergoing open tibial fracture surgery, and the levels of neuroinflammation and the degree of memory dysfunction were evaluated at 1 day and 3 days after surgery. In the in vitro study, the effect of activated MCs on astrocytes were further clarified. Surgery increased the number of MCs, the astrocyte activation and the production of inflammatory factors, and resulted in cognitive deficits. Site-directed pre-injection of Cromolyn can inhibit this effect. In the vitro study, the conditioned medium from C48/80-stimulated mast cells (P815) could induce primary astrocyte activation and subsequent production of inflammatory cytokines, which could be inhibited by Cromolyn. These findings indicate that activated MCs could trigger astrocyte activation, be involved in neuroinflammation and possibly contribute to POCD. Interactions between MCs and astrocytes could provide potential therapeutic targets for POCD. © 2016 The Author(s) Published by S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. A digital implementation of neuron-astrocyte interaction for neuromorphic applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nazari, Soheila; Faez, Karim; Amiri, Mahmood; Karami, Ehsan

    2015-06-01

    Recent neurophysiologic findings have shown that astrocytes play important roles in information processing and modulation of neuronal activity. Motivated by these findings, in the present research, a digital neuromorphic circuit to study neuron-astrocyte interaction is proposed. In this digital circuit, the firing dynamics of the neuron is described by Izhikevich model and the calcium dynamics of a single astrocyte is explained by a functional model introduced by Postnov and colleagues. For digital implementation of the neuron-astrocyte signaling, Single Constant Multiply (SCM) technique and several linear approximations are used for efficient low-cost hardware implementation on digital platforms. Using the proposed neuron-astrocyte circuit and based on the results of MATLAB simulations, hardware synthesis and FPGA implementation, it is demonstrated that the proposed digital astrocyte is able to change the firing patterns of the neuron through bidirectional communication. Utilizing the proposed digital circuit, it will be illustrated that information processing in synaptic clefts is strongly regulated by astrocyte. Moreover, our results suggest that the digital circuit of neuron-astrocyte crosstalk produces diverse neural responses and therefore enhances the information processing capabilities of the neuromorphic circuits. This is suitable for applications in reconfigurable neuromorphic devices which implement biologically brain circuits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Cerebral Mast Cells Participate In Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction by Promoting Astrocyte Activation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiang Zhang

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Astrocytes, the major glial cell type that has been increasingly recognized as contributing to neuroinflammation, are critical in the occurrence and development of postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD. Although emerging evidence showed that brain mast cells (MCs are the "first responders” in neuroinflammation, little is known about the functional communication between MCs and astrocytes. Methods: In this study, we investigated the potential regulation of astrocyte activation by MCs. Rats received an intracerebroventricular injection of Cromolyn (an MC stabilizer or sterile saline 30 min before undergoing open tibial fracture surgery, and the levels of neuroinflammation and the degree of memory dysfunction were evaluated at 1 day and 3 days after surgery. In the in vitro study, the effect of activated MCs on astrocytes were further clarified. Results: Surgery increased the number of MCs, the astrocyte activation and the production of inflammatory factors, and resulted in cognitive deficits. Site-directed pre-injection of Cromolyn can inhibit this effect. In the vitro study, the conditioned medium from C48/80-stimulated mast cells (P815 could induce primary astrocyte activation and subsequent production of inflammatory cytokines, which could be inhibited by Cromolyn. Conclusion: These findings indicate that activated MCs could trigger astrocyte activation, be involved in neuroinflammation and possibly contribute to POCD. Interactions between MCs and astrocytes could provide potential therapeutic targets for POCD.

  11. Reactive Transformation and Increased BDNF Signaling by Hippocampal Astrocytes in Response to MK-801

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yueming; Li, Guanjun; Wang, Lihua; Li, Huafang

    2015-01-01

    MK-801, also known as dizocilpine, is a noncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptor antagonist that induces schizophrenia-like symptoms. While astrocytes have been implicated in the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, astrocytic responses to MK-801 and their significance to schizotypic symptoms are unclear. Changes in the expression levels of glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP), a marker of astrocyte activation in response to a variety of pathogenic stimuli, were examined in the hippocampus of rats treated with the repeated MK-801 injection (0.5 mg/10ml/kg body weight for 6 days) and in primary cultured hippocampal astrocytes incubated with MK-801 (5 or 20 μM for 24 h). Moreover, the expression levels of BDNF and its receptors TrkB and p75 were examined in MK-801-treated astrocyte cultures. MK-801 treatment enhanced GFAP expression in the rat hippocampus and also increased the levels of GFAP protein and mRNA in hippocampal astrocytes in vitro. Treatment of cultured hippocampal astrocytes with MK-801 enhanced protein and mRNA levels of BDNF, TrkB, and p75. Collectively, our results suggest that hippocampal astrocytes may contribute to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia symptoms associated with NMDA receptor hypofunction by reactive transformation and altered BDNF signaling. PMID:26700309

  12. Proteomic analysis of astrocytic secretion that regulates neurogenesis using quantitative amine-specific isobaric tagging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yan, Hu; Zhou, Wenhao; Wei, Liming; Zhong, Fan; Yang, Yi

    2010-01-01

    Astrocytes are essential components of neurogenic niches that affect neurogenesis through membrane association and/or the release of soluble factors. To identify factors released from astrocytes that could regulate neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation, we used mild oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) to inhibit the secretory capacity of astrocytes. Using the Transwell co-culture system, we found that OGD-treated astrocytes could not promote neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation. Next, isobaric tagging for the relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) proteomics techniques was performed to identify the proteins in the supernatants of astrocytes (with or without OGD). Through a multi-step analysis and gene ontology classification, 130 extracellular proteins were identified, most of which were involved in neuronal development, the inflammatory response, extracellular matrix composition and supportive functions. Of these proteins, 44 had never been reported to be produced by astrocytes. Using ProteinPilot software analysis, we found that 60 extracellular proteins were significantly altered (27 upregulated and 33 downregulated) in the supernatant of OGD-treated astrocytes. Among these proteins, 7 have been reported to be able to regulate neurogenesis, while others may have the potential to regulate neurogenesis. This study profiles the major proteins released by astrocytes, which play important roles in the modulation of neurogenesis.

  13. Ethanol-induced swelling in neonatal rat primary astrocyte cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aschner, M; Allen, J W; Mutkus, L A; Cao, C

    2001-05-11

    We tested the hypothesis that astrocytes swell in response to ethanol (EtOH) exposure. The experimental approach consisted of an electrical impedance method designed to measure cell volume. In chronic experiments, EtOH (100 mM) was added to the culture media for 1, 3, or 7 days. The cells were subsequently exposed for 15 min to isotonic buffer (122 mM NaCl) also containing 100 mM EtOH. Subsequently, the cells were washed and exposed to hypotonic buffer (112 mM NaCl) containing 100 mM mannitol. Chronic exposure to EtOH led to a marked increase in cell volume compared with control cells. Specific anion cotransport blockers, such as SITS, DIDS, furosemide, or bumetanide, when simultaneously added with EtOH to hyponatremic buffer, failed to reverse the EtOH-induced effect on swelling. In acute experiments, confluent neonatal rat primary astrocyte cultures were exposed to isotonic media (122 mM NaCl) for 15 min, followed by 45-min exposure to hypotonic media (112 mM NaCl, mimicking in vivo hyponatremic conditions associated with EtOH withdrawal) in the presence of 0-100 mM EtOH. This exposure led to a concentration-dependent increase in cell volume. Combined, these studies suggest that astrocytes exposed to EtOH accumulate compensatory organic solutes to maintain cell volume, and that in response to hyponatremia and EtOH withdrawal their volume increases to a greater extent than in cells exposed to hyponatremia alone. Furthermore, the changes associated with EtOH are osmotic in nature, and they are not reversed by anion cotransport blockers.

  14. Pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate activates the Nrf2 pathway in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liddell, Jeffrey R; Lehtonen, Sarka; Duncan, Clare; Keksa-Goldsteine, Velta; Levonen, Anna-Liisa; Goldsteins, Gundars; Malm, Tarja; White, Anthony R; Koistinaho, Jari; Kanninen, Katja M

    2016-02-26

    Endogenous defense against oxidative stress is controlled by nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2). The normal compensatory mechanisms to combat oxidative stress appear to be insufficient to protect against the prolonged exposure to reactive oxygen species during disease. Counterbalancing the effects of oxidative stress by up-regulation of Nrf2 signaling has been shown to be effective in various disease models where oxidative stress is implicated, including Alzheimer's disease. Stimulation of Nrf2 signaling by small-molecule activators is an appealing strategy to up-regulate the endogenous defense mechanisms of cells. Here, we investigate Nrf2 induction by the metal chelator and known nuclear factor-κB inhibitor pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC) in cultured astrocytes and neurons, and mouse brain. Nrf2 induction is further examined in cultures co-treated with PDTC and kinase inhibitors or amyloid-beta, and in Nrf2-deficient cultures. We show that PDTC is a p