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Sample records for cord astrocytes suggests

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

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    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. Observations on the interactions of Schwann cells and astrocytes following x irradiation of neonatal rat spinal cord

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    Blakemore, W F; Patterson, R C

    1975-10-01

    Myelination was inhibited in the spinal cord of three day-old rats with 2000 rads of x irradiation. Myelination subsequently occurred as a result of caudal migration of oligodendrocytes and extensive invasion of the cord by Schwann cells. Although oligodendrocytes were present in areas containing Schwann cells, astrocytes were absent. The presence of Schwann cells in the neuropil of the spinal cord did not stimulate production of basement membrane by astrocytes, so no new glial limiting membrane was formed. Evidence is presented which suggests that if astrocytes do not form a glial limiting membrane when opposed by large numbers of Schwann cells they are destroyed by the invading cells. It is suggested that the glial limiting membrane normally inhibits entry of Schwann cells into the central nervous system; if this is destroyed and not reconstituted, Schwann cells can migrate freely into the neuropil.

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

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    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.

  4. Astrocytes from the contused spinal cord inhibit oligodendrocyte differentiation of adult oligodendrocyte precursor cells by increasing the expression of bone morphogenetic proteins.

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    Wang, Yaping; Cheng, Xiaoxin; He, Qian; Zheng, Yiyan; Kim, Dong H; Whittemore, Scott R; Cao, Qilin L

    2011-04-20

    Promotion of remyelination is an important therapeutic strategy to facilitate functional recovery after traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). Transplantation of neural stem cells (NSCs) or oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) has been used to enhance remyelination after SCI. However, the microenvironment in the injured spinal cord is inhibitory for oligodendrocyte (OL) differentiation of NSCs or OPCs. Identifying the signaling pathways that inhibit OL differentiation in the injured spinal cord could lead to new therapeutic strategies to enhance remyelination and functional recovery after SCI. In the present study, we show that reactive astrocytes from the injured rat spinal cord or their conditioned media inhibit OL differentiation of adult OPCs with concurrent promotion of astrocyte differentiation. The expression of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP) is dramatically increased in the reactive astrocytes and their conditioned media. Importantly, blocking BMP activity by BMP receptor antagonist, noggin, reverse the effects of active astrocytes on OPC differentiation by increasing the differentiation of OL from OPCs while decreasing the generation of astrocytes. These data indicate that the upregulated bone morphogenetic proteins in the reactive astrocytes are major factors to inhibit OL differentiation of OPCs and to promote its astrocyte differentiation. These data suggest that manipulation of BMP signaling in the endogenous or grafted NSCs or OPCs may be a useful therapeutic strategy to increase their OL differentiation and remyelination and enhance functional recovery after SCI.

  5. Nanog interact with CDK6 to regulates astrocyte cells proliferation following spinal cord injury

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    Gu, Jun [Nanjing Medical University, 140 Hanzhong Road, Nanjing, Jiangsu (China); Department of Orthopaedics, Xishan People' s Hospital, Wuxi, Jiangsu (China); Ni, Yingjie; Xu, Lin; Xu, Hongliang [Department of Orthopaedics, Xishan People' s Hospital, Wuxi, Jiangsu (China); Cai, Zhengdong, E-mail: caizhengdongsh@163.com [Nanjing Medical University, 140 Hanzhong Road, Nanjing, Jiangsu (China)

    2016-01-22

    Previous research had reported transcription factors Nanog expressed in pluripotent embryonic stem cells (ESCS) that played an important role in regulating the cell proliferation. Nanog levels are frequently elevated in ESCS, but the role in the spinal cord was not clear. To examine the biological relevance of Nanog, we studied its properties in spinal cord injury model. The expression of Nanog and PCNA was gradually increased and reached a peak at 3 day by western blot analysis. The expression of Nanog was further analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Double immunofluorescent staining uncovered that Nanog can co-labeled with PCNA and GFAP in the spinal cord tissue. In vitro, Nanog can promote the proliferation of astrocyte cell by Fluorescence Activating Cell Sorter (FACS) and CCK8. Meanwhile, the cell-cycle protein CDK6 could interact with Nanog in the spinal cord tissue. Taken together, these data suggested that both Nanog may play important roles in spinal cord pathophysiology via interact with CDK6.

  6. Nanog interact with CDK6 to regulates astrocyte cells proliferation following spinal cord injury

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    Gu, Jun; Ni, Yingjie; Xu, Lin; Xu, Hongliang; Cai, Zhengdong

    2016-01-01

    Previous research had reported transcription factors Nanog expressed in pluripotent embryonic stem cells (ESCS) that played an important role in regulating the cell proliferation. Nanog levels are frequently elevated in ESCS, but the role in the spinal cord was not clear. To examine the biological relevance of Nanog, we studied its properties in spinal cord injury model. The expression of Nanog and PCNA was gradually increased and reached a peak at 3 day by western blot analysis. The expression of Nanog was further analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Double immunofluorescent staining uncovered that Nanog can co-labeled with PCNA and GFAP in the spinal cord tissue. In vitro, Nanog can promote the proliferation of astrocyte cell by Fluorescence Activating Cell Sorter (FACS) and CCK8. Meanwhile, the cell-cycle protein CDK6 could interact with Nanog in the spinal cord tissue. Taken together, these data suggested that both Nanog may play important roles in spinal cord pathophysiology via interact with CDK6.

  7. Ultrastructural study of myelinating cells and sub-pial astrocytes in developing rat spinal cord.

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    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.

  8. Estrogen alleviates neuropathic pain induced after spinal cord injury by inhibiting microglia and astrocyte activation.

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    Lee, Jee Youn; Choi, Hae Young; Ju, Bong-Gun; Yune, Tae Young

    2018-04-16

    Neuropathic pain after spinal cord injury (SCI) is developed in about 80% of SCI patients and there is no efficient therapeutic drug to alleviate SCI-induced neuropathic pain. Here we examined the effect of estrogen on SCI-induced neuropathic pain at below-level and its effect on neuroinflammation as underlying mechanisms. Neuropathic pain is developed at late phase after SCI and a single dose of 17β-estradiol (100, 300 μg/kg) were administered to rats with neuropathic pain after SCI through intravenous injection. As results, both mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia were significantly reduced by 17β-estradiol compared to vehicle control. Both microglia and astrocyte activation in the lamina I and II of L4-5 dorsal horn was also inhibited by 17β-estradiol. In addition, the levels of p-p38MAPK and p-ERK known to be activated in microglia and p-JNK known to be activated in astrocyte were significantly decreased by 17β-estradiol. Furthermore, the mRNA expression of inflammatory mediators such as Il-1β, Il-6, iNos, and Cox-2 was more attenuated in 17β-estradiol-treated group than in vehicle-treated group. Particularly, we found that the analgesic effect by 17β-estradiol was mediated via estrogen receptors, which are expressed in dorsal horn neurons. These results suggest that 17β-estradiol may attenuate SCI-induced neuropathic pain by inhibiting microglia and astrocyte activation followed inflammation. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Astrocytes

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    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....

  10. 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.

  11. PERK pathway is involved in oxygen-glucose-serum deprivation-induced NF-kB activation via ROS generation in spinal cord astrocytes.

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    Liu, Jinbo; Du, Lijian

    2015-11-13

    Mitochondrial dysfunction is a direct target of hypoxic/ischemic stress in astrocytes, which results in the increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Previous reports showed that ROS can activate NF-kB in spinal cord astrocytes, which occurs as a secondary injury during the pathological process of spinal cord injury (SCI). Protein kinase RNA (PKR)-like ER kinase (PERK) plays an important role in mitochondrial dysfunction. To elucidate the specific role of PERK in hypoxic/ischemic-induced NF-kB activation in spinal astrocytes, we utilized an in vitro oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) model, which showed an enhanced formation of ROS and NF-kB activation. Knockdown of PERK resulted in reduced activation of PERK and ROS generation in astrocytes under OGD conditions. Notably, the knockdown of PERK also induced NF-kB activation in astrocytes. These data suggest that PERK is required for the hypoxic/ischemic-induced-dependent regulation of ROS and that it is involved in NF-kB activation in the astrocytes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

  13. An oscillating extracellular voltage gradient reduces the density and influences the orientation of astrocytes in injured mammalian spinal cord.

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    Moriarty, L J; Borgens, R B

    2001-01-01

    We have studied the cellular basis for recovery from acute spinal cord injury induced by applied electric fields. We have emphasized this recovery is due to the regeneration of spinal axons around and through the lesion, and have begun to evaluate the contribution of other cells to the recovery process. We have imposed a voltage gradient of about 320 microV/mm across puncture wounds to the adult rat spinal cord in order to study the accumulation and orientation of GFAP+ astrocytes within and adjacent to the lesion. This electric field was imposed by a miniaturized electronic implant designed to alternate the polarity of the field every 15 minutes. Astrocytes are known to undergo hyperplastic transformation within injured mammalian cords forming a major component of the scar that forms in response to injury. We have made three observations using a new computer based morphometry technique: First, we note a slight shift in the orientation of astrocytes parallel to the long axis of the spinal cord towards an imaginary reference perpendicular to this axis by approximately 10 degrees--but only in undamaged white matter near the lesion. Second, the relative number of astrocytes was markedly, and statistically significantly, reduced within electrically--treated spinal cords, particularly in the lesion. Third, the imposed voltage gradient statistically reduced the numbers of astrocytes possessing oriented cell processes within the injury site compared to adjacent undamaged regions of spinal cord.

  14. ROCK inhibition with Y27632 promotes the proliferation and cell cycle progression of cultured astrocyte from spinal cord.

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    Yu, Zhiyuan; Liu, Miao; Fu, Peicai; Xie, Minjie; Wang, Wei; Luo, Xiang

    2012-12-01

    Rho-associated Kinase (ROCK) has been identified as an important regulator of proliferation and cell cycle progression in a number of cell types. Although its effects on astrocyte proliferation have not been well characterized, ROCK has been reported to play important roles in gap junction formation, morphology, and migration of astrocytes. In the present study, our aim was to investigate the effect of ROCK inhibition by [(+)-(R)-trans-4-(1-aminoethyl)-N-(4-pyridyl) cyclohexanecarboxamide dihydrochloride] (Y27632) on proliferation and DNA synthesis in cultured astrocytes from rat spinal cord and the possible mechanism involved. Western blots showed that treatment of astrocytes with Y27632 increased their expression of cyclin D1, CDK4, and cyclin E, thereby causing cell cycle progression. Furthermore, Y27632-induced astrocyte proliferation was mediated through the extracellular-signal-regulated kinase signaling cascade. These results indicate the importance of ROCK in astrocyte proliferation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Purines released from astrocytes inhibit excitatory synaptic transmission in the ventral horn of the spinal cord

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    Carlsen, Eva Maria Meier; Perrier, Jean-Francois Marie

    2014-01-01

    by different neuromodulators. These substances are usually thought of being released by dedicated neurons. However, in other networks from the central nervous system synaptic transmission is also modulated by transmitters released from astrocytes. The star-shaped glial cell responds to neurotransmitters....... Neurons responded to electrical stimulation by monosynaptic EPSCs (excitatory monosynaptic postsynaptic currents). We used mice expressing the enhanced green fluorescent protein under the promoter of the glial fibrillary acidic protein to identify astrocytes. Chelating calcium with BAPTA in a single...... neighboring astrocyte increased the amplitude of synaptic currents. In contrast, when we selectively stimulated astrocytes by activating PAR-1 receptors with the peptide TFLLR, the amplitude of EPSCs evoked by a paired stimulation protocol was reduced. The paired-pulse ratio was increased, suggesting...

  16. Neural progenitor cells but not astrocytes respond distally to thoracic spinal cord injury in rat models

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    Tara Nguyen

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI is a detrimental condition that causes loss of sensory and motor function in an individual. Many complex secondary injury cascades occur after SCI and they offer great potential for therapeutic targeting. In this study, we investigated the response of endogenous neural progenitor cells, astrocytes, and microglia to a localized thoracic SCI throughout the neuroaxis. Twenty-five adult female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent mild-contusion thoracic SCI (n = 9, sham surgery (n = 8, or no surgery (n = 8. Spinal cord and brain tissues were fixed and cut at six regions of the neuroaxis. Immunohistochemistry showed increased reactivity of neural progenitor cell marker nestin in the central canal at all levels of the spinal cord. Increased reactivity of astrocyte-specific marker glial fibrillary acidic protein was found only at the lesion epicenter. The number of activated microglia was significantly increased at the lesion site, and activated microglia extended to the lumbar enlargement. Phagocytic microglia and macrophages were significantly increased only at the lesion site. There were no changes in nestin, glial fibrillary acidic protein, microglia and macrophage response in the third ventricle of rats subjected to mild-contusion thoracic SCI compared to the sham surgery or no surgery. These findings indicate that neural progenitor cells, astrocytes and microglia respond differently to a localized SCI, presumably due to differences in inflammatory signaling. These different cellular responses may have implications in the way that neural progenitor cells can be manipulated for neuroregeneration after SCI. This needs to be further investigated.

  17. JNK-induced MCP-1 production in spinal cord astrocytes contributes to central sensitization and neuropathic pain.

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    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.

  18. The temporal profile of the reaction of microglia, astrocytes, and macrophages in the delayed onset paraplegia after transient spinal cord ischemia in rabbits.

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    Matsumoto, Satoshi; Matsumoto, Mishiya; Yamashita, Atsuo; Ohtake, Kazunobu; Ishida, Kazuyoshi; Morimoto, Yasuhiro; Sakabe, Takefumi

    2003-06-01

    In the present study, we sought to elucidate the temporal profile of the reaction of microglia, astrocytes, and macrophages in the progression of delayed onset motor dysfunction after spinal cord ischemia (15 min) in rabbits. At 2, 4, 8, 12, 24, and 48 h after reperfusion (9 animals in each), hind limb motor function was assessed, and the lumbar spinal cord was histologically examined. Delayed motor dysfunction was observed in most animals at 48 h after ischemia, which could be predicted by a poor recovery of segmental spinal cord evoked potentials at 15 min of reperfusion. In the gray matter of the lumbar spinal cord, both microglia and astrocytes were activated early (2 h) after reperfusion. Microglia were diffusely activated and engulfed motor neurons irrespective of the recovery of segmental spinal cord evoked potentials. In contrast, early astrocytic activation was confined to the area where neurons started to show degeneration. Macrophages were first detected at 8 h after reperfusion and mainly surrounded the infarction area later. Although the precise roles of the activation of microglia, astrocytes, and macrophages are to be further determined, the results indicate that understanding functional changes of astrocytes may be important in the mechanism of delayed onset motor dysfunction including paraplegia. Microglia and macrophages play a role in removing tissue debris after transient spinal cord ischemia. Disturbance of astrocytic defense mechanism, breakdown of the blood-spinal cord barrier, or both seemed to be involved in the development of delayed motor dysfunction.

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

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    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

  20. Mdivi-1 inhibits astrocyte activation and astroglial scar formation and enhances axonal regeneration after spinal cord injury in rats

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    gang li

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available After spinal cord injury (SCI, astrocytes become hypertrophic and proliferative, forming a dense network of astroglial processes at the site of the lesion. This constitutes a physical and biochemical barrier to axonal regeneration. Mitochondrial fission regulates cell cycle progression; inhibiting the cell cycle of astrocytes can reduce expression levels of axon growth-inhibitory molecules as well as astroglial scar formation after SCI. We therefore investigated how an inhibitor of mitochondrial fission, Mdivi-1, would affect astrocyte proliferation, astroglial scar formation, and axonal regeneration following SCI in rats. Western blot and immunofluorescent double-labeling showed that Mdivi-1 markedly reduced the expression of the astrocyte marker glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP, and a cell proliferation marker, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, in astrocytes 3 days after SCI. Moreover, Mdivi-1 decreased the expression of GFAP and neurocan, a chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan. Notably, immunofluorescent labeling and Nissl staining showed that Mdivi-1 elevated the production of growth-associated protein-43 and increased neuronal survival at 4 weeks after SCI. Finally, hematoxylin-eosin staining and behavioral evaluation of motor function indicated that Mdivi-1 also reduced cavity formation and improved motor function 4 weeks after SCI. Our results confirm that Mdivi-1 promotes motor function after SCI, and indicate that inhibiting mitochondrial fission using Mdivi-1 can inhibit astrocyte activation and astroglial scar formation and contribute to axonal regeneration after SCI in rats.

  1. Astrocyte sigma-1 receptors modulate connexin 43 expression leading to the induction of below-level mechanical allodynia in spinal cord injured mice.

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    Choi, Sheu-Ran; Roh, Dae-Hyun; Yoon, Seo-Yeon; Kwon, Soon-Gu; Choi, Hoon-Seong; Han, Ho-Jae; Beitz, Alvin J; Lee, Jang-Hern

    2016-12-01

    We have previously shown using a spinal cord injury (SCI) model that gap junctions contribute to the early spread of astrocyte activation in the lumbar spinal cord and that this astrocyte communication plays critical role in the induction of central neuropathic pain. Sigma-1 receptors (Sig-1Rs) have been implicated in spinal astrocyte activation and the development of peripheral neuropathic pain, yet their contribution to central neuropathic pain remains unknown. Thus, we investigated whether SCI upregulates spinal Sig-1Rs, which in turn increase the expression of the astrocytic gap junction protein, connexin 43 (Cx43) leading to the induction of central neuropathic pain. A thoracic spinal cord hemisection significantly increased both astrocyte activation and Cx43 expression in lumbar dorsal horn. Sig-1Rs were also increased in lumbar dorsal horn astrocytes, but not neurons or microglia. Intrathecal injection of an astrocyte metabolic inhibitor (fluorocitrate); a gap junction/hemichannel blocker (carbenoxolone); or a Cx43 mimetic peptide ( 43 Gap26) significantly reduced SCI-induced bilateral below-level mechanical allodynia. Blockade of Sig-1Rs with BD1047 during the induction phase of pain significantly suppressed the SCI-induced development of mechanical allodynia, astrocyte activation, increased expression of Cx43 in both total and membrane levels, and increased association of Cx43 with Sig-1R. However, SCI did not change the expression of oligodendrocyte (Cx32) or neuronal (Cx36) gap junction proteins. These findings demonstrate that SCI activates astrocyte Sig-1Rs leading to increases in the expression of the gap junction protein, Cx43 and astrocyte activation in the lumbar dorsal horn, and ultimately contribute to the induction of bilateral below-level mechanical allodynia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Onset of Spinal Cord Astrocyte Precursor Emigration from the Ventricular Zone Involves the Zeb1 Transcription Factor

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    David Ohayon

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available During spinal cord development, astrocyte precursors arise from neuroepithelial progenitors, delaminate from the ventricular zone, and migrate toward their final locations where they differentiate. Although the mechanisms underlying their early specification and late differentiation are being deciphered, less is known about the temporal control of their migration. Here, we show that the epithelial-mesenchymal transition regulator Zeb1 is expressed in glial precursors and report that loss of Zeb1 function specifically delays the onset of astrocyte precursor delamination from the ventricular zone, correlating with transient deregulation of the adhesion protein Cadherin-1. Consequently, astrocyte precursor invasion into the Zeb1−/− mutant white matter is delayed, and induction of their differentiation is postponed. These findings illustrate how fine regulation of adhesive properties influences the onset of neural precursor migration and further support the notion that duration of exposure of migrating astrocyte precursors to environmental cues and/or their correct positioning influence the timing of their differentiation.

  3. Edaravone protects against oxygen-glucose-serum deprivation/restoration-induced apoptosis in spinal cord astrocytes by inhibiting integrated stress response

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    Bin Dai

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available We previously found that oxygen-glucose-serum deprivation/restoration (OGSD/R induces apoptosis of spinal cord astrocytes, possibly via caspase-12 and the integrated stress response, which involves protein kinase R-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK, eukaryotic initiation factor 2-alpha (eIF2α and activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4. We hypothesized that edaravone, a low molecular weight, lipophilic free radical scavenger, would reduce OGSD/R-induced apoptosis of spinal cord astrocytes. To test this, we established primary cultures of rat astrocytes, and exposed them to 8 hours/6 hours of OGSD/R with or without edaravone (0.1, 1, 10, 100 μM treatment. We found that 100 μM of edaravone significantly suppressed astrocyte apoptosis and inhibited the release of reactive oxygen species. It also inhibited the activation of caspase-12 and caspase-3, and reduced the expression of homologous CCAAT/enhancer binding protein, phosphorylated (p-PERK, p-eIF2α, and ATF4. These results point to a new use of an established drug in the prevention of OGSD/R-mediated spinal cord astrocyte apoptosis via the integrated stress response.

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

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    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

  5. Inhibition of HMGB1 reduces rat spinal cord astrocytic swelling and AQP4 expression after oxygen-glucose deprivation and reoxygenation via TLR4 and NF-κB signaling in an IL-6-dependent manner.

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    Sun, Lin; Li, Man; Ma, Xun; Feng, Haoyu; Song, Junlai; Lv, Cong; He, Yajun

    2017-11-25

    Spinal cord astrocyte swelling is an important component to spinal cord edema and is associated with poor functional recovery as well as therapeutic resistance after spinal cord injury (SCI). High mobility group box-1 (HMGB1) is a mediator of inflammatory responses in the central nervous system and plays a critical role after SCI. Given this, we sought to identify both the role and underlying mechanisms of HMGB1 in cellular swelling and aquaporin 4 (AQP4) expression in cultured rat spinal cord astrocytes after oxygen-glucose deprivation/reoxygenation (OGD/R). The post-natal day 1-2 Sprague-Dawley rat spinal cord astrocytes were cultured in vitro, and the OGD/R model was induced. We first investigated the effects of OGD/R on spinal cord astrocytic swelling and HMGB1 and AQP4 expression, as well as HMGB1 release. We then studied the effects of HMGB1 inhibition on cellular swelling, HMGB1 and AQP4 expression, and HMGB1 release. The roles of both toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4)/nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) signaling pathway and interleukin-6 (IL-6) in reducing cellular swelling resulting from HMGB1 inhibition in spinal cord astrocytes after OGD/R were studied. Intergroup data were compared using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) followed by Dunnett's test. The OGD/R increased spinal cord astrocytic swelling and HMGB1 and AQP4 expression, as well as HMGB1 release. Inhibition of HMGB1 using either HMGB1 shRNA or ethyl pyruvate resulted in reduced cellular volume, mitochondrial and endoplasmic reticulum swelling, and lysosome number and decreased upregulation of both HMGB1 and AQP4 in spinal cord astrocytes, as well as HMGB1 release. The HMGB1 effects on spinal cord astrocytic swelling and AQP4 upregulation after OGD/R were mediated-at least in part-via activation of TLR4, myeloid differentiation primary response gene 88 (MyD88), and NF-κB. These activation effects can be repressed by TLR4 inhibition using CLI-095 or C34, or by NF-κB inhibition using BAY 11

  6. Concise Review: Reactive Astrocytes and Stem Cells in Spinal Cord Injury: Good Guys or Bad Guys?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Lukovic, D.; Stojkovic, M.; Moreno-Manzano, V.; Jendelová, Pavla; Syková, Eva; Bhattacharya, S.S.; Erceg, Slaven

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 33, APR (2015), s. 1036-1041 ISSN 1066-5099 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP304/12/G069; GA MŠk(CZ) LO1309 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : glia * induced pluripotent stem cells * neural differentiation * neural stem cell * spinal cord injury * stem cell transplantation Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 5.902, year: 2015

  7. Post-spinal cord injury astrocyte-mediated functional recovery in rats after intraspinal injection of the recombinant adenoviral vectors Ad5-VEGF and Ad5-ANG.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Povysheva, Tatyana; Shmarov, Maksim; Logunov, Denis; Naroditsky, Boris; Shulman, Ilya; Ogurcov, Sergey; Kolesnikov, Pavel; Islamov, Rustem; Chelyshev, Yuri

    2017-07-01

    OBJECTIVE The most actively explored therapeutic strategy for overcoming spinal cord injury (SCI) is the delivery of genes encoding molecules that stimulate regeneration. In a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and in preliminary clinical trials in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the combined administration of recombinant adenoviral vectors (Ad5-VEGF+Ad5-ANG) encoding the neurotrophic/angiogenic factors vascular endothelial growth factor ( VEGF) and angiogenin ( ANG) was found to slow the development of neurological deficits. These results suggest that there may be positive effects of this combination of genes in posttraumatic spinal cord regeneration. The objective of the present study was to determine the effects of Ad5-VEGF+Ad5-ANG combination therapy on motor function recovery and reactivity of astrocytes in a rat model of SCI. METHODS Spinal cord injury was induced in adult Wistar rats by the weight-drop method. Rats (n = 51) were divided into 2 groups: the experimental group (Ad5-VEGF+Ad5-ANG) and the control group (Ad5-GFP [green fluorescent protein]). Recovery of motor function was assessed using the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan scale. The duration and intensity of infectivity and gene expression from the injected vectors were assessed by immunofluorescent detection of GFP. Reactivity of glial cells was assessed by changes in the number of immunopositive cells expressing glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), S100β, aquaporin 4 (AQP4), oligodendrocyte transcription factor 2, and chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan 4. The level of S100β mRNA expression in the spinal cord was estimated by real-time polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS Partial recovery of motor function was observed 30 days after surgery in both groups. However, Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan scores were 35.9% higher in the Ad5-VEGF+Ad5-ANG group compared with the control group. Specific GFP signal was observed at distances of up to 5 mm in the rostral and caudal

  8. 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.

  9. In vitro study of uptake and synthesis of creatine and its precursors by cerebellar granule cells and astrocytes suggests some hypotheses on the physiopathology of the inherited disorders of creatine metabolism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carducci Claudia

    2012-04-01

    results confirm that both neurons and astrocytes have the capability to synthesize and uptake Cr, and suggest that at least in vitro intracellular Cr can increase to a much greater extent through uptake than through de novo synthesis. Our results are compatible with the clinical observations that when the Cr transporter is defective, intracellular Cr is absent despite the brain should be able to synthesize it. Further research is needed to fully understand to what extent our results reflect the in vivo situation.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Astrocytes from the Contused Spinal Cord Inhibit Oligodendrocyte Differentiation of Adult Oligodendrocyte Precursor Cells by Increasing the Expression of Bone Morphogenetic Proteins

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Yaping; Cheng, Xiaoxin; He, Qian; Zheng, Yiyan; Kim, Dong H.; Whittemore, Scott R.; Cao, Qilin L.

    2011-01-01

    Promotion of remyelination is an important therapeutic strategy to facilitate functional recovery after traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI). Transplantation of neural stem cells (NSCs) or oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) has been used to enhance remyelination after SCI. However, the microenvironment in the injured spinal cord is inhibitory for oligodendrocyte (OL) differentiation of NSCs or OPCs. Identifying the signaling pathways that inhibit OL differentiation in the injured spinal cor...

  14. Effectors of Th1 and Th17 cells act on astrocytes and augment their neuroinflammatory properties

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prajeeth, Chittappen K; Kronisch, Julius; Khorooshi, Reza M. H.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Autoreactive Th1 and Th17 cells are believed to mediate the pathology of multiple sclerosis in the central nervous system (CNS). Their interaction with microglia and astrocytes in the CNS is crucial for the regulation of the neuroinflammation. Previously we have shown that only Th1...... mice where trafficking of Th1 cells into the CNS was affected. We compared microglia and astrocyte response in the brain and spinal cord of these mice. We further treated astrocytes with supernatants from highly pure Th1 and Th17 cultures and assessed the mRNA expression of neurotrophic factors......, cytokines and chemokines using real-time PCR. Data obtained was analysed using Kruskal- Wallis test. Results: We observed in α4-deficient mice weak microglial activation but comparable astrogliosis to that of wild-type mice in the regions of the brain populated with Th17 infiltrates suggesting that Th17...

  15. Effectors of Th1 and Th17 cells act on astrocytes and augment their neuroinflammatory properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prajeeth, Chittappen K; Kronisch, Julius; Khorooshi, Reza; Knier, Benjamin; Toft-Hansen, Henrik; Gudi, Viktoria; Floess, Stefan; Huehn, Jochen; Owens, Trevor; Korn, Thomas; Stangel, Martin

    2017-10-16

    Autoreactive Th1 and Th17 cells are believed to mediate the pathology of multiple sclerosis in the central nervous system (CNS). Their interaction with microglia and astrocytes in the CNS is crucial for the regulation of the neuroinflammation. Previously, we have shown that only Th1 but not Th17 effectors activate microglia. However, it is not clear which cells are targets of Th17 effectors in the CNS. To understand the effects driven by Th17 cells in the CNS, we induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis in wild-type mice and CD4 + T cell-specific integrin α4-deficient mice where trafficking of Th1 cells into the CNS was affected. We compared microglial and astrocyte response in the brain and spinal cord of these mice. We further treated astrocytes with supernatants from highly pure Th1 and Th17 cultures and assessed the messenger RNA expression of neurotrophic factors, cytokines and chemokines, using real-time PCR. Data obtained was analyzed using the Kruskal-Wallis test. We observed in α4-deficient mice weak microglial activation but comparable astrogliosis to that of wild-type mice in the regions of the brain populated with Th17 infiltrates, suggesting that Th17 cells target astrocytes and not microglia. In vitro, in response to supernatants from Th1 and Th17 cultures, astrocytes showed altered expression of neurotrophic factors, pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. Furthermore, increased expression of chemokines in Th1- and Th17-treated astrocytes enhanced recruitment of microglia and transendothelial migration of Th17 cells in vitro. Our results demonstrate the delicate interaction between T cell subsets and glial cells and how they communicate to mediate their effects. Effectors of Th1 act on both microglia and astrocytes whereas Th17 effectors preferentially target astrocytes to promote neuroinflammation.

  16. Aquaporins in Spinal Cord Injury: The Janus Face of AQP4

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesic, Olivera; Guest, James D.; Zivadinovic, Dragoslava; Narayana, Ponnada A.; Herrera, Juan J.; Grill, Raymond J.; Mokkapati, Venkata U.L.; Gelman, Benjamin B.; Lee, Julieann

    2010-01-01

    Although malfunction of spinal cord water channels (aquaporins, AQP) likely contributes to severe disturbances in ion/water homeostasis after spinal cord injury (SCI), their roles are still poorly understood. Here we report and discuss the potential significance of changes in the AQP4 expression in human SCI that generates GFAP-labeled astrocytes devoid of AQP4, and GFAP-labeled astroglia that overexpress AQP4. We used a rat model of contusion SCI to study observed changes in human SCI. AQP4-negative astrocytes are likely generated during the process of SCI-induced replacement of lost astrocytes, but their origin and role in SCI remains to be investigated. We found that AQP4-overexpression is likely triggered by hypoxia. Our transcriptional profiling of injured rat cords suggests that elevated AQP4-mediated water influx accompanies increased uptake of chloride and potassium ions which represents a protective astrocytic reaction to hypoxia. However, unbalanced water intake also results in astrocytic swelling that can contribute to motor impairment, but likely only in milder injuries. In severe rat SCI, a low abundance of AQP4-overexpressing astrocytes was found during the motor recovery phase. Our results suggest that severe rat contusion SCI is a better model to analyze AQP4 functions after SCI. We found that AQP4 increases in the chronic post-injury phase are associated with the development of pain-like behavior in SCI rats, while possible mechanisms underlying pain development may involve astrocytic swelling-induced glutamate release. In contrast, the formation and size of fluid-filled cavities occurring later after SCI does not appear to be affected by the extent of increased AQP4 levels. Therefore, the effect of therapeutic interventions targeting AQP4 will depend not only on the time interval after SCI or animal models, but also on the balance between protective role of increased AQP4 in hypoxia and deleterious effects of ongoing astrocytic swelling. PMID

  17. Cell transplantation for the treatment of spinal cord injury - bone marrow stromal cells and choroid plexus epithelial cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chizuka Ide

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Transplantation of bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs enhanced the outgrowth of regenerating axons and promoted locomotor improvements of rats with spinal cord injury (SCI. BMSCs did not survive long-term, disappearing from the spinal cord within 2-3 weeks after transplantation. Astrocyte-devoid areas, in which no astrocytes or oligodendrocytes were found, formed at the epicenter of the lesion. It was remarkable that numerous regenerating axons extended through such astrocyte-devoid areas. Regenerating axons were associated with Schwann cells embedded in extracellular matrices. Transplantation of choroid plexus epithelial cells (CPECs also enhanced axonal regeneration and locomotor improvements in rats with SCI. Although CPECs disappeared from the spinal cord shortly after transplantation, an extensive outgrowth of regenerating axons occurred through astrocyte-devoid areas, as in the case of BMSC transplantation. These findings suggest that BMSCs and CPECs secret neurotrophic factors that promote tissue repair of the spinal cord, including axonal regeneration and reduced cavity formation. This means that transplantation of BMSCs and CPECs promotes "intrinsic" ability of the spinal cord to regenerate. The treatment to stimulate the intrinsic regeneration ability of the spinal cord is the safest method of clinical application for SCI. It should be emphasized that the generally anticipated long-term survival, proliferation and differentiation of transplanted cells are not necessarily desirable from the clinical point of view of safety.

  18. 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.

  19. Enhancing NAD+ Salvage Pathway Reverts the Toxicity of Primary Astrocytes Expressing Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-linked Mutant Superoxide Dismutase 1 (SOD1).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harlan, Benjamin A; Pehar, Mariana; Sharma, Deep R; Beeson, Gyda; Beeson, Craig C; Vargas, Marcelo R

    2016-05-13

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) participates in redox reactions and NAD(+)-dependent signaling pathways. Although the redox reactions are critical for efficient mitochondrial metabolism, they are not accompanied by any net consumption of the nucleotide. On the contrary, NAD(+)-dependent signaling processes lead to its degradation. Three distinct families of enzymes consume NAD(+) as substrate: poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases, ADP-ribosyl cyclases (CD38 and CD157), and sirtuins (SIRT1-7). Because all of the above enzymes generate nicotinamide as a byproduct, mammalian cells have evolved an NAD(+) salvage pathway capable of resynthesizing NAD(+) from nicotinamide. Overexpression of the rate-limiting enzyme in this pathway, nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, increases total and mitochondrial NAD(+) levels in astrocytes. Moreover, targeting nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase to the mitochondria also enhances NAD(+) salvage pathway in astrocytes. Supplementation with the NAD(+) precursors nicotinamide mononucleotide and nicotinamide riboside also increases NAD(+) levels in astrocytes. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is caused by the progressive degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord, brain stem, and motor cortex. Superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutations account for up to 20% of familial ALS and 1-2% of apparently sporadic ALS cases. Primary astrocytes isolated from mutant human superoxide dismutase 1-overexpressing mice as well as human post-mortem ALS spinal cord-derived astrocytes induce motor neuron death in co-culture. Increasing total and mitochondrial NAD(+) content in ALS astrocytes increases oxidative stress resistance and reverts their toxicity toward co-cultured motor neurons. Taken together, our results suggest that enhancing the NAD(+) salvage pathway in astrocytes could be a potential therapeutic target to prevent astrocyte-mediated motor neuron death in ALS. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular

  20. Enhancing NAD+ Salvage Pathway Reverts the Toxicity of Primary Astrocytes Expressing Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-linked Mutant Superoxide Dismutase 1 (SOD1)*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harlan, Benjamin A.; Pehar, Mariana; Sharma, Deep R.; Beeson, Gyda; Beeson, Craig C.; Vargas, Marcelo R.

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) participates in redox reactions and NAD+-dependent signaling pathways. Although the redox reactions are critical for efficient mitochondrial metabolism, they are not accompanied by any net consumption of the nucleotide. On the contrary, NAD+-dependent signaling processes lead to its degradation. Three distinct families of enzymes consume NAD+ as substrate: poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases, ADP-ribosyl cyclases (CD38 and CD157), and sirtuins (SIRT1–7). Because all of the above enzymes generate nicotinamide as a byproduct, mammalian cells have evolved an NAD+ salvage pathway capable of resynthesizing NAD+ from nicotinamide. Overexpression of the rate-limiting enzyme in this pathway, nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, increases total and mitochondrial NAD+ levels in astrocytes. Moreover, targeting nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase to the mitochondria also enhances NAD+ salvage pathway in astrocytes. Supplementation with the NAD+ precursors nicotinamide mononucleotide and nicotinamide riboside also increases NAD+ levels in astrocytes. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is caused by the progressive degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord, brain stem, and motor cortex. Superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutations account for up to 20% of familial ALS and 1–2% of apparently sporadic ALS cases. Primary astrocytes isolated from mutant human superoxide dismutase 1-overexpressing mice as well as human post-mortem ALS spinal cord-derived astrocytes induce motor neuron death in co-culture. Increasing total and mitochondrial NAD+ content in ALS astrocytes increases oxidative stress resistance and reverts their toxicity toward co-cultured motor neurons. Taken together, our results suggest that enhancing the NAD+ salvage pathway in astrocytes could be a potential therapeutic target to prevent astrocyte-mediated motor neuron death in ALS. PMID:27002158

  1. 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....

  2. Active sulforhodamine 101 uptake into hippocampal astrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  3. 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) ...

  4. 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.

  5. Huperzine A inhibits CCL2 production in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis mice and in cultured astrocyte.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, G X; Zhu, X Q; Chen, Y; Wu, G C; Wang, J

    2013-01-01

    The active role of chemokines and inflammatory cytokines in the central nervous system (CNS) during the pathogenesis of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) has been clearly established. Recent studies from our laboratory reported that Huperzine A (HupA) can attenuate the disease process in EAE by the inhibition of inflammation, demyelination, and axonal injury in the spinal cord as well as encephalomyelitic T-cell proliferation. In this study, the effects of low dose HupA on CCL2, TNF-alpha, IL-6, and IL-1beta expression were evaluated in EAE. The effect of HupA on lipopolysachharide (LPS)-induced inflammatory molecule secretion was investigated in cultured-astrocytes in vitro. In MOG35-55-induced EAE mice, intraperitoneal injections of HupA (0.1 mg/kg•d−1) significantly suppressed the expression of CCL2, IL-6, TNF-alpha, and IL-1beta in the spinal cord. HupA also repressed LPS-induced CCL2 production, but with little influence on pro-inflammatory cytokines in primary cultured astrocytes. The inhibition effect of HupA on CCL2 is PPARgamma-dependent and nicotine receptor-independent. Conditioned culture media from HupA-treated astrocyte decreased PBMC migration in vitro. Collectively, these results suggest that HupA can ameliorate EAE by inhibiting CCL2 production in astrocyte, which may consequently decrease inflammatory cell infiltration in the spinal cord. HupA may have a potential therapeutic value for the treatment of MS and other neuroinflammatory diseases.

  6. 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.

  7. Memory in astrocytes: a hypothesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caudle Robert M

    2006-01-01

    that the ion channels in the astrocyte syncytium be electrically in contact with each other. This function may be served by astrocyte gap junctions and suggests that agents that selectively block these gap junctions should disrupt memory.

  8. DREAM-Dependent Activation of Astrocytes in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larrodé, Pilar; Calvo, Ana Cristina; Moreno-Martínez, Laura; de la Torre, Miriam; Moreno-García, Leticia; Molina, Nora; Castiella, Tomás; Iñiguez, Cristina; Pascual, Luis Fernando; Mena, Francisco Javier Miana; Zaragoza, Pilar; Y Cajal, Santiago Ramón; Osta, Rosario

    2018-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease of unknown origin and characterized by a relentless loss of motor neurons that causes a progressive muscle weakness until death. Among the several pathogenic mechanisms that have been related to ALS, a dysregulation of calcium-buffering proteins in motor neurons of the brain and spinal cord can make these neurons more vulnerable to disease progression. Downstream regulatory element antagonist modulator (DREAM) is a neuronal calcium-binding protein that plays multiple roles in the nucleus and cytosol. The main aim of this study was focused on the characterization of DREAM and glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP) in the brain and spinal cord tissues from transgenic SOD1 G93A mice and ALS patients to unravel its potential role under neurodegenerative conditions. The DREAM and GFAP levels in the spinal cord and different brain areas from transgenic SOD1 G93A mice and ALS patients were analyzed by Western blot and immunohistochemistry. Our findings suggest that the calcium-dependent excitotoxicity progressively enhanced in the CNS in ALS could modulate the multifunctional nature of DREAM, strengthening its apoptotic way of action in both motor neurons and astrocytes, which could act as an additional factor to increase neuronal damage. The direct crosstalk between astrocytes and motor neurons can become vulnerable under neurodegenerative conditions, and DREAM could act as an additional switch to enhance motor neuron loss. Together, these findings could pave the way to further study the molecular targets of DREAM to find novel therapeutic strategies to fight ALS.

  9. 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

  10. Progressive paralysis associated with diffuse astrocyte anaplasia in delta 202 mice homozygous for a transgene encoding the SV40 T antigen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Revilla, Rubén; Soto-Zárate, Carlos; Ridaura, Cecilia; Chávez-Dueñas, Lucía; Paul, Dieter

    2004-03-01

    A convenient transgenic astrocytoma model in delta202 mice, homozygous for a construct encoding the early region of the SV40 virus genome, is described. In the offspring of crosses between delta202 mice heterozygous for the transgene nearly 60% were transgenic; one third of these developed progressive paralysis starting in the hindlimbs at approximately 35 days of age and died at 90 +/- 30 days of age. In affected mice proliferating-non-neuronal cells immunostained with antibodies to the GFAP, an astrocyte marker, whose number increased with age were found in the white matter of the brain, cerebellum and spinal cord, and progressive degeneration and necrosis of spinal motoneurons was observed that-may explain the paralysis. The early onset and reproducible time course of the neurological disease suggest that homozygous delta202 mice, whose proliferating astrocytes appear to damage spinal motoneurons, are a useful model to study astrocyte differentiation, function and tumorigenesis.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. 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.

  20. Metabolic gene expression changes in astrocytes in Multiple Sclerosis cerebral cortex are indicative of immune-mediated signaling

    KAUST Repository

    Zeis, T.

    2015-04-01

    Emerging as an important correlate of neurological dysfunction in Multiple Sclerosis (MS), extended focal and diffuse gray matter abnormalities have been found and linked to clinical manifestations such as seizures, fatigue and cognitive dysfunction. To investigate possible underlying mechanisms we analyzed the molecular alterations in histopathological normal appearing cortical gray matter (NAGM) in MS. By performing a differential gene expression analysis of NAGM of control and MS cases we identified reduced transcription of astrocyte specific genes involved in the astrocyte–neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) and the glutamate–glutamine cycle (GGC). Additional quantitative immunohistochemical analysis demonstrating a CX43 loss in MS NAGM confirmed a crucial involvement of astrocytes and emphasizes their importance in MS pathogenesis. Concurrently, a Toll-like/IL-1β signaling expression signature was detected in MS NAGM, indicating that immune-related signaling might be responsible for the downregulation of ANLS and GGC gene expression in MS NAGM. Indeed, challenging astrocytes with immune stimuli such as IL-1β and LPS reduced their ANLS and GGC gene expression in vitro. The detected upregulation of IL1B in MS NAGM suggests inflammasome priming. For this reason, astrocyte cultures were treated with ATP and ATP/LPS as for inflammasome activation. This treatment led to a reduction of ANLS and GGC gene expression in a comparable manner. To investigate potential sources for ANLS and GGC downregulation in MS NAGM, we first performed an adjuvant-driven stimulation of the peripheral immune system in C57Bl/6 mice in vivo. This led to similar gene expression changes in spinal cord demonstrating that peripheral immune signals might be one source for astrocytic gene expression changes in the brain. IL1B upregulation in MS NAGM itself points to a possible endogenous signaling process leading to ANLS and GGC downregulation. This is supported by our findings that, among others

  1. 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.

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Comparison of mesenchymal stem cells derived from fat, bone marrow, Wharton's jelly, and umbilical cord blood for treating spinal cord injuries in dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryu, Hak-Hyun; Kang, Byung-Jae; Park, Sung-Su; Kim, Yongsun; Sung, Gyu-Jin; Woo, Heung-Myong; Kim, Wan Hee; Kweon, Oh-Kyeong

    2012-12-01

    Previous animal studies have shown that transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into spinal cord lesions enhances axonal regeneration and promotes functional recovery. We isolated the MSCs derived from fat, bone marrow, Wharton's jelly and umbilical cord blood (UCB) positive for MSC markers and negative for hematopoietic cell markers. Their effects on the regeneration of injured canine spinal cords were compared. Spinal cord injury was induced by balloon catheter compression. Dogs with injured spinal cords were treated with only matrigel or matrigel mixed with each type of MSCs. Olby and modified Tarlov scores, immunohistochemistry, ELISA and Western blot analysis were used to evaluate the therapeutic effects. The different MSC groups showed significant improvements in locomotion at 8 weeks after transplantation (Pin the lesion site. Compared to the control, the lesion sizes were smaller, and fewer microglia and reactive astrocytes were found in the spinal cord epicenter of all MSC groups. Although there were no significant differences in functional recovery among the MSCs groups, UCB-derived MSCs (UCSCs) induced more nerve regeneration and anti-inflammation activity (Pin the spinal cord. Our data suggest that transplantation of MSCs promotes functional recovery after SCI. Furthermore, application of UCSCs led to more nerve regeneration, neuroprotection and less inflammation compared to other MSCs.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Transcriptomic analyses of primary astrocytes under TNFα treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  13. 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.

  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. 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

  16. Impact of Heat Shock Protein A 12B Overexpression on Spinal Astrocyte Survival Against Oxygen-Glucose-Serum Deprivation/Restoration in Primary Cultured Astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Xun; Ma, Yuan; Yang, Li-Bin; Cheng, Jing-Ming; Yang, Tao; Fan, Ke-Xia; Li, Yun-Ming; Liu, En-Yu; Cheng, Lin; Huang, Hai-Dong; Gu, Jian-Wen; Kuang, Yong-Qin

    2016-08-01

    Heat shock protein A 12B (HSPA12B) is a newly discovered member of the heat shock protein 70 family. Preclinical evidence indicates that HSPA12B helps protect the brain from ischemic injury, although its specific function remains unclear. The aim of this study is to investigate whether HSPA12B overexpression can protect astrocytes from oxygen-glucose-serum deprivation/restoration (OGD/R) injury. We analyzed the effects of HSPA12B overexpression on spinal cord ischemia-reperfusion injury and spinal astrocyte survival. After ischemia-reperfusion injury, we found that HSPA12B overexpression decreased spinal cord water content and infarct volume. MTT assay showed that HSPA12B overexpression increased astrocyte survival after OGD/R treatment. Flow cytometry results showed a marked inhibition of OGD/R-induced astrocyte apoptosis. Western blot assay showed that HSPA12B overexpression significantly increased regulatory protein B-cell lymphocyte 2 (Bcl-2) levels, whereas it decreased expression of the Bax protein, which forms a heterodimer with Bcl-2. Measurements of the level of activation of caspase-3 by Caspase-Glo®3/7 Assay kit showed that HSPA12B overexpression markedly inhibited caspase-3 activation. Notably, we demonstrated that the effects of HSPA12B on spinal astrocyte survival depended on activation of the PI3K/Akt signal pathway. These findings indicate that HSPA12B protects against spinal cord ischemia-reperfusion injury and may represent a potential treatment target.

  17. Connexin 50 Expression in Ependymal Stem Progenitor Cells after Spinal Cord Injury Activation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Javier Rodriguez-Jimenez

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Ion channels included in the family of Connexins (Cx help to control cell proliferation and differentiation of neuronal progenitors. Here we explored the role of Connexin 50 (Cx50 in cell fate modulation of adult spinal cord derived neural precursors located in the ependymal canal (epSPC. epSPC from non-injured animals showed high expression levels of Cx50 compared to epSPC from animals with spinal cord injury (SCI (epSPCi. When epSPC or epSPCi were induced to spontaneously differentiate in vitro we found that Cx50 favors glial cell fate, since higher expression levels, endogenous or by over-expression of Cx50, augmented the expression of the astrocyte marker GFAP and impaired the neuronal marker Tuj1. Cx50 was found in both the cytoplasm and nucleus of glial cells, astrocytes and oligodendrocyte-derived cells. Similar expression patterns were found in primary cultures of mature astrocytes. In addition, opposite expression profile for nuclear Cx50 was observed when epSPC and activated epSPCi were conducted to differentiate into mature oligodendrocytes, suggesting a different role for this ion channel in spinal cord beyond cell-to-cell communication. In vivo detection of Cx50 by immunohistochemistry showed a defined location in gray matter in non-injured tissues and at the epicenter of the injury after SCI. epSPCi transplantation, which accelerates locomotion regeneration by a neuroprotective effect after acute SCI is associated with a lower signal of Cx50 within the injured area, suggesting a minor or detrimental contribution of this ion channel in spinal cord regeneration by activated epSPCi.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. The astrocyte/meningeal cell interface is a barrier to neurite outgrowth which can be overcome by manipulation of inhibitory molecules or axonal signalling pathways

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shearer, Morven C; Niclou, Simone P; Brown, David; Asher, Richard A; Holtmaat, Anthony J D G; Levine, Joel M; Verhaagen, J.; Fawcett, James W

    2003-01-01

    Invading meningeal cells form a barrier to axon regeneration after damage to the spinal cord and other parts of the CNS, axons stopping at the interface between meningeal cells and astrocytes. Axon behavior was examined using an in vitro model of astrocyte/meningeal cell interfaces, created by

  1. Phagocytic response of astrocytes to damaged neighboring cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Experimental Neuromyelitis Optica Induces a Type I Interferon Signature in the Spinal Cord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Nathalie; Zeka, Bleranda; Schanda, Kathrin; Fujihara, Kazuo; Illes, Zsolt; Dahle, Charlotte; Reindl, Markus; Lassmann, Hans; Bradl, Monika

    2016-01-01

    Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is an acute inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS) which predominantly affects spinal cord and optic nerves. Most patients harbor pathogenic autoantibodies, the so-called NMO-IgGs, which are directed against the water channel aquaporin 4 (AQP4) on astrocytes. When these antibodies gain access to the CNS, they mediate astrocyte destruction by complement-dependent and by antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity. In contrast to multiple sclerosis (MS) patients who benefit from therapies involving type I interferons (I-IFN), NMO patients typically do not profit from such treatments. How is I-IFN involved in NMO pathogenesis? To address this question, we made gene expression profiles of spinal cords from Lewis rat models of experimental neuromyelitis optica (ENMO) and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). We found an upregulation of I-IFN signature genes in EAE spinal cords, and a further upregulation of these genes in ENMO. To learn whether the local I-IFN signature is harmful or beneficial, we induced ENMO by transfer of CNS antigen-specific T cells and NMO-IgG, and treated the animals with I-IFN at the very onset of clinical symptoms, when the blood-brain barrier was open. With this treatment regimen, we could amplify possible effects of the I-IFN induced genes on the transmigration of infiltrating cells through the blood brain barrier, and on lesion formation and expansion, but could avoid effects of I-IFN on the differentiation of pathogenic T and B cells in the lymph nodes. We observed that I-IFN treated ENMO rats had spinal cord lesions with fewer T cells, macrophages/activated microglia and activated neutrophils, and less astrocyte damage than their vehicle treated counterparts, suggesting beneficial effects of I-IFN. PMID:26990978

  5. 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.

  6. 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...

  7. 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...

  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. 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.

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. Evidence of compromised blood-spinal cord barrier in early and late symptomatic SOD1 mice modeling ALS.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Svitlana Garbuzova-Davis

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available The blood-brain barrier (BBB, blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB, and blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier (BCSFB control cerebral/spinal cord homeostasis by selective transport of molecules and cells from the systemic compartment. In the spinal cord and brain of both ALS patients and animal models, infiltration of T-cell lymphocytes, monocyte-derived macrophages and dendritic cells, and IgG deposits have been observed that may have a critical role in motor neuron damage. Additionally, increased levels of albumin and IgG have been found in the cerebrospinal fluid in ALS patients. These findings suggest altered barrier permeability in ALS. Recently, we showed disruption of the BBB and BSCB in areas of motor neuron degeneration in the brain and spinal cord in G93A SOD1 mice modeling ALS at both early and late stages of disease using electron microscopy. Examination of capillary ultrastructure revealed endothelial cell degeneration, which, along with astrocyte alteration, compromised the BBB and BSCB. However, the effect of these alterations upon barrier function in ALS is still unclear. The aim of this study was to determine the functional competence of the BSCB in G93A mice at different stages of disease.Evans Blue (EB dye was intravenously injected into ALS mice at early or late stage disease. Vascular leakage and the condition of basement membranes, endothelial cells, and astrocytes were investigated in cervical and lumbar spinal cords using immunohistochemistry. Results showed EB leakage in spinal cord microvessels from all G93A mice, indicating dysfunction in endothelia and basement membranes and confirming our previous ultrastructural findings on BSCB disruption. Additionally, downregulation of Glut-1 and CD146 expressions in the endothelial cells of the BSCB were found which may relate to vascular leakage.Results suggest that the BSCB is compromised in areas of motor neuron degeneration in ALS mice at both early and late stages of the disease.

  13. 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...

  14. Stat3 inhibition attenuates mechanical allodynia through transcriptional regulation of chemokine expression in spinal astrocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaodong Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (Stat3 is known to induce cell proliferation and inflammation by regulating gene transcription. Recent studies showed that Stat3 modulates nociceptive transmission by reducing spinal astrocyte proliferation. However, it is unclear whether Stat3 also contributes to the modulation of nociceptive transmission by regulating inflammatory response in spinal astrocytes. This study aimed at investigating the role of Stat3 on neuroinflammation during development of pain in rats after intrathecal injection of lipopolysaccharide (LPS. METHODS: Stat3 specific siRNA oligo and synthetic selective inhibitor (Stattic were applied to block the activity of Stat3 in primary astrocytes or rat spinal cord, respectively. LPS was used to induce the expression of proinflammatory genes in all studies. Immunofluorescence staining of cells and slices of spinal cord was performed to monitor Stat3 activation. The impact of Stat3 inhibition on proinflammatory genes expression was determined by cytokine antibody array, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and real-time polymerase chain reaction. Mechanical allodynia, as determined by the threshold pressure that could induce hind paw withdrawal after application of standardized von Frey filaments, was used to detect the effects of Stat3 inhibition after pain development with intrathecal LPS injection. RESULTS: Intrathecal injection of LPS activated Stat3 in reactive spinal astrocytes. Blockade of Stat3 activity attenuated mechanical allodynia significantly and was correlated with a lower number of reactive astrocytes in the spinal dorsal horn. In vitro study demonstrated that Stat3 modulated inflammatory response in primary astrocytes by transcriptional regulation of chemokine expression including Cx3cl1, Cxcl5, Cxcl10 and Ccl20. Similarly, inhibition of Stat3 reversed the expression of these chemokines in the spinal dorsal horn. CONCLUSIONS: Stat3 acted as a

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Fixed cord

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Levy, L.M.; DiChiro, G.; DeSouza, B.; McCullough, D.C.; McVeigh, E.; Hefffez, D.

    1989-01-01

    Pulsatile longitudinal motion of the spinal cord was examined with MR phase imaging in healthy subjects and in cases involving cord tethering and compression. Asymptomatic patients with a low conus medullaris demonstrated normal cord motion. Clinical improvement was associated with improved cord motion after surgical untethering, provided permanent neurologic damage had not occurred. Decreased and unchanged cord motion was associated with unchanged neurologic deficits. In cases of normal cord motion and possible retethering versus syringomyelia, clinical improvement occurred after shunting only. MR imaging of pulsatile cord motion can be clinically useful in the evaluation of diseases restricting motion of the neuraxis

  19. 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...

  20. The Influence of Coping-oriented Hypnotic Suggestions on Chronic Pain in Patients with Spinal Cord Injury (SCI): A Randomized Controlled Study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Lone; Kjøgx, Heidi; Kasch, Helge

    -hypnosis is unknown. The aim is to investigate the effect of coping-oriented hypnotic suggestions on chronic pain post-hypnosis. Methods: Seventy-five SCI-patients with chronic pain (>3, NRS 0-10) are randomized into one of three conditions; 1) coping-oriented hypnosis plus current treatment, 2) neutral hypnosis plus...

  1. 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.

  2. Spinal cord swelling and candidiasis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ho, K.; Gronseth, G.; Aldrich, M.; Williams, A.

    1982-01-01

    Fusiform swelling of the spinal cord was noted myelographically in a patient with Hodgkin's disease. Autopsy revealed that the swelling was cauused by Candida infection of the spinal cord. It is suggested that fungal infection be included in the differential diagnosis of spinal cord swelling in the immunsupporessed cancer patient. (orig.)

  3. Spinal cord swelling and candidiasis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ho, K.; Gronseth, G.; Aldrich, M.; Williams, A.

    1982-11-01

    Fusiform swelling of the spinal cord was noted myelographically in a patient with Hodgkin's disease. Autopsy revealed that the swelling was caused by Candida infection of the spinal cord. It is suggested that fungal infection be included in the differential diagnosis of spinal cord swelling in the immunosuppressed cancer patient.

  4. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  6. 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.

  7. Cyclosporin A increases recovery after spinal cord injury but does not improve myelination by oligodendrocyte progenitor cell transplantation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Feng-Chao

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Transplantation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs is an attractive therapy for demyelinating diseases. Cyclosporin A (CsA is one of the foremost immunosuppressive agents and has widespread use in tissue and cell transplantation. However, whether CsA affects survival and differentiation of engrafted OPCs in vivo is unknown. In this study, the effect of CsA on morphological, functional and immunological aspects, as well as survival and differentiation of engrafted OPCs in injured spinal cord was explored. Results We transplanted green fluorescent protein (GFP expressed OPCs (GFP-OPCs into injured spinal cords of rats treated with or without CsA (10 mg/kg. Two weeks after cell transplantation, more GFP-positive cells were found in CsA-treated rats than that in vehicle-treated ones. However, the engrafted cells mostly differentiated into astrocytes, but not oligodendrocytes in both groups. In the CsA-treated group, a significant decrease in spinal cord lesion volume along with increase in spared myelin and neurons were found compared to the control group. Such histological improvement correlated well with an increase in behavioral recovery. Further study suggested that CsA treatment could inhibit infiltration of T cells and activation of resident microglia and/or macrophages derived from infiltrating monocytes in injured spinal cords, which contributes to the survival of engrafted OPCs and repair of spinal cord injury (SCI. Conclusions These results collectively indicate that CsA can promote the survival of engrafted OPCs in injured spinal cords, but has no effect on their differentiation. The engrafted cells mostly differentiated into astrocytes, but not oligodendrocytes. The beneficial effect of CsA on SCI and the survival of engrafted cells may be attributed to its neuroprotective effect.

  8. The relationship between maternal and neonatal umbilical cord plasma homocyst(e)ine suggests a potential role for maternal homocyst(e)ine in fetal metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malinow, M R; Rajkovic, A; Duell, P B; Hess, D L; Upson, B M

    1998-02-01

    Data on fetal blood homocyst(e)ine concentrations are not available. We tested the hypothesis that homocyst(e)ine crosses the maternal/placental/fetal interphases and is sequestered by the fetus. The concentration of homocyst(e)ine was determined at parturition in peripheral venous plasma from 35 nulliparous healthy pregnant women and umbilical arterial and venous plasma from their conceptus. Findings demonstrated a descending concentration gradient of plasma homocyst(e)ine from maternal vein to umbilical vein and to umbilical artery; the decrease at each interphase approximated 1 micromol/L. The neonate weight and gestational age were inversely related to maternal homocyst(e)ine concentrations. The umbilical vein to umbilical artery homocyst(e)ine decrement suggests that uptake of homocyst(e)ine occurs in the fetus. The likely incorporation of homocyst(e)ine into the fetal metabolic cycle may implicate maternal homocyst(e)ine as having a potential nutritional role in the fetus. Further studies are required to explain the role of homocyst(e)ine in fetal metabolism and development.

  9. 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.

  10. Minocycline attenuates bone cancer pain in rats by inhibiting NF-κB in spinal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhen-Peng; Xiong, Bing-Rui; Guan, Xue-Hai; Cao, Fei; Manyande, Anne; Zhou, Ya-Qun; Zheng, Hua; Tian, Yu-Ke

    2016-06-01

    To investigate the mechanisms underlying the anti-nociceptive effect of minocycline on bone cancer pain (BCP) in rats. A rat model of BCP was established by inoculating Walker 256 mammary carcinoma cells into tibial medullary canal. Two weeks later, the rats were injected with minocycline (50, 100 μg, intrathecally; or 40, 80 mg/kg, ip) twice daily for 3 consecutive days. Mechanical paw withdrawal threshold (PWT) was used to assess pain behavior. After the rats were euthanized, spinal cords were harvested for immunoblotting analyses. The effects of minocycline on NF-κB activation were also examined in primary rat astrocytes stimulated with IL-1β in vitro. BCP rats had marked bone destruction, and showed mechanical tactile allodynia on d 7 and d 14 after the operation. Intrathecal injection of minocycline (100 μg) or intraperitoneal injection of minocycline (80 mg/kg) reversed BCP-induced mechanical tactile allodynia. Furthermore, intraperitoneal injection of minocycline (80 mg/kg) reversed BCP-induced upregulation of GFAP (astrocyte marker) and PSD95 in spinal cord. Moreover, intraperitoneal injection of minocycline (80 mg/kg) reversed BCP-induced upregulation of NF-κB, p-IKKα and IκBα in spinal cord. In IL-1β-stimulated primary rat astrocytes, pretreatment with minocycline (75, 100 μmol/L) significantly inhibited the translocation of NF-κB to nucleus. Minocycline effectively alleviates BCP by inhibiting the NF-κB signaling pathway in spinal astrocytes.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Rat nucleus accumbens core astrocytes modulate reward and the motivation to self-administer ethanol after abstinence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, Cecilia; Freitas, Kelen C C; Zou, Shiping; Poland, Ryan S; Syed, Wahab A; Urban, Daniel J; Minter, Sabrina C; Shelton, Keith L; Hauser, Kurt F; Negus, S Stevens; Knapp, Pamela E; Bowers, M Scott

    2014-11-01

    astrocyte-specific DREADDs. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that NAcore astrocytes can shape the motivation to self-administer ethanol; suggesting that the development of ligands which selectively stimulate astrocytes may be a successful strategy to abate ethanol-seeking behavior.

  2. Glycine Receptor Activation Impairs ATP-Induced Calcium Transients in Cultured Cortical Astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatiana P. Morais

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In central nervous system, glycine receptor (GlyR is mostly expressed in the spinal cord and brainstem, but glycinergic transmission related elements have also been identified in the brain. Astrocytes are active elements at the tripartite synapse, being responsible for the maintenance of brain homeostasis and for the fine-tuning of synaptic activity. These cells communicate, spontaneously or in response to a stimulus, by elevations in their cytosolic calcium (calcium transients, Ca2+T that can be propagated to other cells. How these Ca2+T are negatively modulated is yet poorly understood. In this work, we evaluated GlyR expression and its role on calcium signaling modulation in rat brain astrocytes. We first proved that GlyR, predominantly subunits α2 and β, was expressed in brain astrocytes and its localization was confirmed in the cytoplasm and astrocytic processes by immunohistochemistry assays. Calcium imaging experiments in cultured astrocytes showed that glycine (500 μM, a GlyR agonist, caused a concentration-dependent reduction in ATP-induced Ca2+T, an effect abolished by the GlyR antagonist, strychnine (0.8 μM, as well as by nocodazole (1 μM, known to impair GlyR anchorage to the plasma membrane. This effect was mimicked by activation of GABAAR, another Cl--permeable channel. In summary, we demonstrated that GlyR activation in astrocytes mediates an inhibitory effect upon ATP induced Ca2+T, which most probably involves changes in membrane permeability to Cl- and requires GlyR anchorage at the plasma membrane. GlyR in astrocytes may thus be part of a mechanism to modulate astrocyte-to-neuron communication.

  3. 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.

  4. Evaluation of Avulsion-Induced Neuropathology in Rat Spinal Cords with 18F-FDG Micro-PET/CT.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ze-Min Ling

    Full Text Available Brachial plexus root avulsion (BPRA leads to dramatic motoneuron death and glial reactions in the corresponding spinal segments at the late stage of injury. To protect spinal motoneurons, assessment of the affected spinal segments should be done at an earlier stage of the injury. In this study, we employed 18F-FDG small-animal PET/CT to assess the severity of BPRA-induced cervical spinal cord injuries. Adult Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly treated and divided into three groups: Av+NS (brachial plexus root avulsion (Av treated with normal saline, Av+GM1 (treated with monosialoganglioside, and control. At time points of 3 day (d, 1 week (w, 2 w, 4 w and 8 w post-injury, 18F-FDG micro-PET/CT scans and neuropathology assessments of the injured spinal roots, as well as the spinal cord, were performed. The outcomes of the different treatments were compared. The results showed that BPRA induced local bleeding and typical Wallerian degeneration of the avulsed roots accompanied by 18F-FDG accumulations at the ipsilateral cervical intervertebral foramen. BPRA-induced astrocyte reactions and overexpression of neuronal nitric oxide synthase in the motoneurons correlated with higher 18F-FDG uptake in the ipsilateral cervical spinal cord during the first 2 w post-injury. The GM1 treatment reduced BPRA-induced astrocyte reactions and inhibited the de novo nNOS expressions in spinal motoneurons. The GM1 treatment also protected spinal motoneurons from avulsion within the first 4 w post-injury. The data from this study suggest that 18F-FDG PET/CT could be used to assess the severity of BPRA-induced primary and secondary injuries in the spinal cord. Furthermore, GM1 is an effective drug for reducing primary and secondary spinal cord injuries following BPRA.

  5. Microglial Janus kinase/signal transduction and activator of transcription 3 pathway activity directly impacts astrocyte and spinal neuron characteristics

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Molet, J.; Mauborgne, A.; Diallo, Michael; Armand, V.; Geny, D.; Villanueva, L.; Boucher, Y.; Pohl, M.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 136, č. 1 (2016), s. 133-147 ISSN 0022-3042 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.30.0025 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : astrocytes * cell plasticity * JAK/STAT3 pathway * microglia conditioned media * spinal cord neurons Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 4.083, year: 2016

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells repair spinal cord ischemia/reperfusion injury by promoting axonal growth and anti-autophagy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Fei; Meng, Chunyang; Lu, Rifeng; Li, Lei; Zhang, Ying; Chen, Hao; Qin, Yonggang; Guo, Li

    2014-01-01

    Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate into neurons and astrocytes after transplantation in the spinal cord of rats with ischemia/reperfusion injury. Although bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells are known to protect against spinal cord ischemia/reperfusion injury through anti-apoptotic effects, the precise mechanisms remain unclear. In the present study, bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells were cultured and proliferated, then transplanted into rats with ischemia/reperfusion injury via retro-orbital injection. Immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence with subsequent quantification revealed that the expression of the axonal regeneration marker, growth associated protein-43, and the neuronal marker, microtubule-associated protein 2, significantly increased in rats with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell transplantation compared with those in rats with spinal cord ischemia/reperfusion injury. Furthermore, the expression of the autophagy marker, microtubule-associated protein light chain 3B, and Beclin 1, was significantly reduced in rats with the bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell transplantation compared with those in rats with spinal cord ischemia/reperfusion injury. Western blot analysis showed that the expression of growth associated protein-43 and neurofilament-H increased but light chain 3B and Beclin 1 decreased in rats with the bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell transplantation. Our results therefore suggest that bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell transplantation promotes neurite growth and regeneration and prevents autophagy. These responses may likely be mechanisms underlying the protective effect of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells against spinal cord ischemia/reperfusion injury. PMID:25374587

  10. 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

  11. Nerve Root Compression Increases Spinal Astrocytic Vimentin in Parallel With Sustained Pain and Endothelial Vimentin in Association With Spinal Vascular Reestablishment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Jenell R; Lee, Jasmine; Winkelstein, Beth A

    2017-10-01

    Temporal immunohistochemistry analysis of spinal cord tissue from a rat model of cervical radiculopathy. The goal was to measure spinal endothelial and astrocytic vimentin expression after a painful nerve root compression to define spinal cellular expression of vimentin in the context of pain. The intermediate filament, vimentin, is expressed in a variety of cell types in the spinal cord and is modulated in response to neural pathologies. Early after nerve root compression spinal astrocytes become activated and blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB) breakdown occurs in parallel with development of pain-related behaviors; these spinal responses remain activated as does the presence of pain. In addition to vimentin, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression is a hallmark of astrocyte activation. In contrast, vascular endothelial cells down-regulate vimentin expression in parallel with vascular breakdown. It is not known whether spinal astrocytes and endothelial cells modulate their expression of vimentin in response to a painful neural injury. Mechanical hyperalgesia was measured and spinal cord tissue was harvested at days 1 and 7 after a unilateral nerve root compression in rats. Vimentin was coimmunolabeled with GFAP to label astrocytes and von Willebrand factor (VWF) for endothelial cells in the spinal cord on the side of injury. Spinal astrocytic vimentin increases by day 7 after nerve root compression, corresponding to when mechanical hyperalgesia is maintained. Spinal endothelial vimentin increases as early as day 1 after a painful compression and is even more robust at day 7. The delayed elevation in spinal astrocytic vimentin corresponding to sustained mechanical hyperalgesia supports its having a relationship with pain maintenance. Further, since BSCB integrity has been shown to be reestablished by day 7 after a painful compression, endothelial expressed vimentin may help to fortify spinal vasculature contributing to BSCB stability. N/A.

  12. Chondroitinase ABC plus bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells for repair of spinal cord injury☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chun; He, Xijing; Li, Haopeng; Wang, Guoyu

    2013-01-01

    As chondroitinase ABC can improve the hostile microenvironment and cell transplantation is proven to be effective after spinal cord injury, we hypothesized that their combination would be a more effective treatment option. At 5 days after T8 spinal cord crush injury, rats were injected with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell suspension or chondroitinase ABC 1 mm from the edge of spinal cord damage zone. Chondroitinase ABC was first injected, and bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell suspension was injected on the next day in the combination group. At 14 days, the mean Basso, Beattie and Bresnahan score of the rats in the combination group was higher than other groups. Hematoxylin-eosin staining showed that the necrotic area was significantly reduced in the combination group compared with other groups. Glial fibrillary acidic protein-chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan double staining showed that the damage zone of astrocytic scars was significantly reduced without the cavity in the combination group. Glial fibrillary acidic protein/growth associated protein-43 double immunostaining revealed that positive fibers traversed the damage zone in the combination group. These results suggest that the combination of chondroitinase ABC and bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell transplantation contributes to the repair of spinal cord injury. PMID:25206389

  13. Cord Blood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saeed Abroun

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available   Stem cells are naïve or master cells. This means they can transform into special 200 cell types as needed by body, and each of these cells has just one function. Stem cells are found in many parts of the human body, although some sources have richer concentrations than others. Some excellent sources of stem cells, such as bone marrow, peripheral blood, cord blood, other tissue stem cells and human embryos, which last one are controversial and their use can be illegal in some countries. Cord blood is a sample of blood taken from a newborn baby's umbilical cord. It is a rich source of stem cells, umbilical cord blood and tissue are collected from material that normally has no use following a child’s birth. Umbilical cord blood and tissue cells are rich sources of stem cells, which have been used in the treatment of over 80 diseases including leukemia, lymphoma and anemia as bone marrow stem cell potency.  The most common disease category has been leukemia. The next largest group is inherited diseases. Patients with lymphoma, myelodysplasia and severe aplastic anemia have also been successfully transplanted with cord blood. Cord blood is obtained by syringing out the placenta through the umbilical cord at the time of childbirth, after the cord has been detached from the newborn. Collecting stem cells from umbilical blood and tissue is ethical, pain-free, safe and simple. When they are needed to treat your child later in life, there will be no rejection or incompatibility issues, as the procedure will be using their own cells. In contrast, stem cells from donors do have these potential problems. By consider about cord blood potency, cord blood banks (familial or public were established. In IRAN, four cord blood banks has activity, Shariati BMT center cord blood bank, Royan familial cord blood banks, Royan public cord blood banks and Iranian Blood Transfusion Organ cord blood banks. Despite 50,000 sample which storage in these banks, but the

  14. Predicting Neuroinflammation in Morphine Tolerance for Tolerance Therapy from Immunostaining Images of Rat Spinal Cord.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinn-Long Lin

    Full Text Available Long-term morphine treatment leads to tolerance which attenuates analgesic effect and hampers clinical utilization. Recent studies have sought to reveal the mechanism of opioid receptors and neuroinflammation by observing morphological changes of cells in the rat spinal cord. This work proposes a high-content screening (HCS based computational method, HCS-Morph, for predicting neuroinflammation in morphine tolerance to facilitate the development of tolerance therapy using immunostaining images for astrocytes, microglia, and neurons in the spinal cord. HCS-Morph first extracts numerous HCS-based features of cellular phenotypes. Next, an inheritable bi-objective genetic algorithm is used to identify a minimal set of features by maximizing the prediction accuracy of neuroinflammation. Finally, a mathematic model using a support vector machine with the identified features is established to predict drug-treated images to assess the effects of tolerance therapy. The dataset consists of 15 saline controls (1 μl/h, 15 morphine-tolerant rats (15 μg/h, and 10 rats receiving a co-infusion of morphine (15 μg/h and gabapentin (15 μg/h, Sigma. The three individual models of astrocytes, microglia, and neurons for predicting neuroinflammation yielded respective Jackknife test accuracies of 96.67%, 90.00%, and 86.67% on the 30 rats, and respective independent test accuracies of 100%, 90%, and 60% on the 10 co-infused rats. The experimental results suggest that neuroinflammation activity expresses more predominantly in astrocytes and microglia than in neuron cells. The set of features for predicting neuroinflammation from images of astrocytes comprises mean cell intensity, total cell area, and second-order geometric moment (relating to cell distribution, relevant to cell communication, cell extension, and cell migration, respectively. The present investigation provides the first evidence for the role of gabapentin in the attenuation of morphine tolerance from

  15. Fear Conditioning Downregulates Rac1 Activity in the Basolateral Amygdala Astrocytes to Facilitate the Formation of Fear Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Zhaohui; Tao, Yezheng; Guo, Xiaomu; Cheng, Deqin; Wang, Feifei; Liu, Xing; Ma, Lan

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are well known to scale synaptic structural and functional plasticity, while the role in learning and memory, such as conditioned fear memory, is poorly elucidated. Here, using pharmacological approach, we find that fluorocitrate (FC) significantly inhibits the acquisition of fear memory, suggesting that astrocyte activity is required for fear memory formation. We further demonstrate that fear conditioning downregulates astrocytic Rac1 activity in basolateral amygdala (BLA) in mice and promotes astrocyte structural plasticity. Ablation of astrocytic Rac1 in BLA promotes fear memory acquisition, while overexpression or constitutive activation of astrocytic Rac1 attenuates fear memory acquisition. Furthermore, temporal activation of Rac1 by photoactivatable Rac1 (Rac1-PA) induces structural alterations in astrocytes and in vivo activation of Rac1 in BLA astrocytes during fear conditioning attenuates the formation of fear memory. Taken together, our study demonstrates that fear conditioning-induced suppression of BLA astrocytic Rac1 activity, associated with astrocyte structural plasticity, is required for the formation of conditioned fear memory.

  16. Understanding spatial and temporal patterning of astrocyte calcium transients via interactions between network transport and extracellular diffusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shtrahman, E.; Maruyama, D.; Olariu, E.; Fink, C. G.; Zochowski, M.

    2017-02-01

    Astrocytes form interconnected networks in the brain and communicate via calcium signaling. We investigate how modes of coupling between astrocytes influence the spatio-temporal patterns of calcium signaling within astrocyte networks and specifically how these network interactions promote coordination within this group of cells. To investigate these complex phenomena, we study reduced cultured networks of astrocytes and neurons. We image the spatial temporal patterns of astrocyte calcium activity and quantify how perturbing the coupling between astrocytes influences astrocyte activity patterns. To gain insight into the pattern formation observed in these cultured networks, we compare the experimentally observed calcium activity patterns to the patterns produced by a reduced computational model, where we represent astrocytes as simple units that integrate input through two mechanisms: gap junction coupling (network transport) and chemical release (extracellular diffusion). We examine the activity patterns in the simulated astrocyte network and their dependence upon these two coupling mechanisms. We find that gap junctions and extracellular chemical release interact in astrocyte networks to modulate the spatiotemporal patterns of their calcium dynamics. We show agreement between the computational and experimental findings, which suggests that the complex global patterns can be understood as a result of simple local coupling mechanisms.

  17. The EBI2 signalling pathway plays a role in cellular crosstalk between astrocytes and macrophages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rutkowska, Aleksandra; O'Sullivan, Sinead A; Christen, Isabelle; Zhang, Juan; Sailer, Andreas W; Dev, Kumlesh K

    2016-05-11

    EBI2 is a G protein-coupled receptor activated by oxysterol 7α, 25-dihydroxycholesterol (7α25HC) and regulates T cell-dependant antibody response and B cell migration. We recently found EBI2 is expressed in human astrocytes, regulates intracellular signalling and modulates astrocyte migration. Here, we report that LPS treatment of mouse astrocytes alters mRNA levels of EBI2 and oxysterols suggesting that the EBI2 signalling pathway is sensitive to LPS-mediated immune challenge. We also find that conditioned media obtained from LPS-stimulated mouse astrocytes induces macrophage migration, which is inhibited by the EBI2 antagonist NIBR189. These results demonstrate a role for the EBI2 signalling pathway in astrocytes as a sensor for immune challenge and for communication with innate immune cells such as macrophages.

  18. 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.

  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. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Loss of Local Astrocyte Support Disrupts Action Potential Propagation and Glutamate Release Synchrony from Unmyelinated Hippocampal Axon Terminals In Vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobieski, Courtney; Jiang, Xiaoping; Crawford, Devon C; Mennerick, Steven

    2015-08-05

    Neuron-astrocyte interactions are critical for proper CNS development and function. Astrocytes secrete factors that are pivotal for synaptic development and function, neuronal metabolism, and neuronal survival. Our understanding of this relationship, however, remains incomplete due to technical hurdles that have prevented the removal of astrocytes from neuronal circuits without changing other important conditions. Here we overcame this obstacle by growing solitary rat hippocampal neurons on microcultures that were comprised of either an astrocyte bed (+astrocyte) or a collagen bed (-astrocyte) within the same culture dish. -Astrocyte autaptic evoked EPSCs, but not IPSCs, displayed an altered temporal profile, which included increased synaptic delay, increased time to peak, and severe glutamate release asynchrony, distinct from previously described quantal asynchrony. Although we observed minimal alteration of the somatically recorded action potential waveform, action potential propagation was altered. We observed a longer latency between somatic initiation and arrival at distal locations, which likely explains asynchronous EPSC peaks, and we observed broadening of the axonal spike, which likely underlies changes to evoked EPSC onset. No apparent changes in axon structure were observed, suggesting altered axonal excitability. In conclusion, we propose that local astrocyte support has an unappreciated role in maintaining glutamate release synchrony by disturbing axonal signal propagation. Certain glial cell types (oligodendrocytes, Schwann cells) facilitate the propagation of neuronal electrical signals, but a role for astrocytes has not been identified despite many other functions of astrocytes in supporting and modulating neuronal signaling. Under identical global conditions, we cultured neurons with or without local astrocyte support. Without local astrocytes, glutamate transmission was desynchronized by an alteration of the waveform and arrival time of axonal

  5. 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

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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.

  8. 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

    cytoplasmic, as input of exogenous DDX1 significantly altered both Rev sub-cellular localization from cytoplasmic to nuclear predominance and concomitantly increased HIV-1 viral production in these human astrocytes. We conclude that altered DDX1 expression in human astrocytes is, at least in part, responsible for the unfavorable cellular microenvironment for Rev function in these CNS-based cells. Thus, these data suggest a molecular mechanism(s) for restricted replication in astrocytes as a potential low-level site of residual HIV-1 in vivo

  9. TNF-α promotes extracellular vesicle release in mouse astrocytes through glutaminase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kaizhe; Ye, Ling; Lu, Hongfang; Chen, Huili; Zhang, Yanyan; Huang, Yunlong; Zheng, Jialin C

    2017-04-20

    Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are membrane-contained vesicles shed from cells. EVs contain proteins, lipids, and nucleotides, all of which play important roles in intercellular communication. The release of EVs is known to increase during neuroinflammation. Glutaminase, a mitochondrial enzyme that converts glutamine to glutamate, has been implicated in the biogenesis of EVs. We have previously demonstrated that TNF-α promotes glutaminase expression in neurons. However, the expression and the functionality of glutaminase in astrocytes during neuroinflammation remain unknown. We posit that TNF-α can promote the release of EVs in astrocytes through upregulation of glutaminase expression. Release of EVs, which was demonstrated by electron microscopy, nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA), and Western Blot, increased in mouse astrocytes when treated with TNF-α. Furthermore, TNF-α treatment significantly upregulated protein levels of glutaminase and increased the production of glutamate, suggesting that glutaminase activity is increased after TNF-α treatment. Interestingly, pretreatment with a glutaminase inhibitor blocked TNF-α-mediated generation of reactive oxygen species in astrocytes, which indicates that glutaminase activity contributes to stress in astrocytes during neuroinflammation. TNF-α-mediated increased release of EVs can be blocked by either the glutaminase inhibitor, antioxidant N-acetyl-L-cysteine, or genetic knockout of glutaminase, suggesting that glutaminase plays an important role in astrocyte EV release during neuroinflammation. These findings suggest that glutaminase is an important metabolic factor controlling EV release from astrocytes during neuroinflammation.

  10. Changes in the neuroglial cell populations of the rat spinal cord after local X-irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hubbard, B.M.; Hopewell, J.W.

    1979-01-01

    A 16 mm length of cervical spinal cord of young adult female rats was irradiated with 4000 rad of 250 kV X-rays. Counts of astrocyte and oligodendrocyte nuclei were made in the dorsal columns of both irradiated and control cervical cords during the latent period before the onset of radionecrosis. The numbers of both astrocyte and oligodendrocyte nuclei were reduced one month after exposure to radiation. Both cell populations showed an apparent recovery but this was subsequently followed by a rapid loss of cells prior to the development of white-matter necrosis. The oligodendrocyte population in unirradiated spinal cords increased with age, and mitotic figures were observed among the neuroglia of both irradiated and control cervical spinal cords. A slow, natural turnover of neuroglial cells in the cervical spinal cord is proposed and the relevance of this to the manifestation of delayed white matter necrosis is discussed. (author)

  11. Astrocyte Sodium Signalling and Panglial Spread of Sodium Signals in Brain White Matter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moshrefi-Ravasdjani, Behrouz; Hammel, Evelyn L; Kafitz, Karl W; Rose, Christine R

    2017-09-01

    In brain grey matter, excitatory synaptic transmission activates glutamate uptake into astrocytes, inducing sodium signals which propagate into neighboring astrocytes through gap junctions. These sodium signals have been suggested to serve an important role in neuro-metabolic coupling. So far, it is unknown if astrocytes in white matter-that is in brain regions devoid of synapses-are also able to undergo such intra- and intercellular sodium signalling. In the present study, we have addressed this question by performing quantitative sodium imaging in acute tissue slices of mouse corpus callosum. Focal application of glutamate induced sodium transients in SR101-positive astrocytes. These were largely unaltered in the presence of ionotropic glutamate receptors blockers, but strongly dampened upon pharmacological inhibition of glutamate uptake. Sodium signals induced in individual astrocytes readily spread into neighboring SR101-positive cells with peak amplitudes decaying monoexponentially with distance from the stimulated cell. In addition, spread of sodium was largely unaltered during pharmacological inhibition of purinergic and glutamate receptors, indicating gap junction-mediated, passive diffusion of sodium between astrocytes. Using cell-type-specific, transgenic reporter mice, we found that sodium signals also propagated, albeit less effectively, from astrocytes to neighboring oligodendrocytes and NG2 cells. Again, panglial spread was unaltered with purinergic and glutamate receptors blocked. Taken together, our results demonstrate that activation of sodium-dependent glutamate transporters induces sodium signals in white matter astrocytes, which spread within the astrocyte syncytium. In addition, we found a panglial passage of sodium signals from astrocytes to NG2 cells and oligodendrocytes, indicating functional coupling between these macroglial cells in white matter.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. CPEB1 modulates lipopolysaccharide-mediated iNOS induction in rat primary astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Ki Chan; Hyun Joo, So; Shin, Chan Young

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → Expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 is increased by LPS stimulation in rat primary astrocytes. → JNK regulates expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 in reactive astrocytes. → Down-regulation of CPEB1 using siRNA inhibits oxidative stress and iNOS induction by LPS stimulation. → CPEB1 may play an important role in regulating inflammatory responses in reactive astrocytes induced by LPS. -- Abstract: Upon CNS damage, astrocytes undergo a series of biological changes including increased proliferation, production of inflammatory mediators and morphological changes, in a response collectively called reactive gliosis. This process is an essential part of the brains response to injury, yet much is unknown about the molecular mechanism(s) that induce these changes. In this study, we investigated the role of cytoplasmic polyadenylation element binding protein 1 (CPEB1) in the regulation of inflammatory responses in a model of reactive gliosis, lipopolysaccharide-stimulated astrocytes. CPEB1 is an mRNA-binding protein recently shown to be expressed in astrocytes that may play a role in astrocytes migration. After LPS stimulation, the expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 was increased in rat primary astrocytes in a JNK-dependent process. siRNA-induced knockdown of CPEB1 expression inhibited the LPS-induced up-regulation of iNOS as well as NO and ROS production, a hallmark of immunological activation of astrocytes. The results from the study suggest that CPEB1 is actively involved in the regulation of inflammatory responses in astrocytes, which might provide new insights into the regulatory mechanism after brain injury.

  15. Sulfocerebrosides upregulate liposome uptake in human astrocytes without inducing a proinflammatory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suesca, Elizabeth; Alejo, Jose Luis; Bolaños, Natalia I; Ocampo, Jackson; Leidy, Chad; González, John M

    2013-07-01

    Astrocytes are involved in the pathogenesis of demyelinating diseases, where they actively regulate the secretion of proinflammatory factors, and trigger the recruitment of immune cells in the central nervous system (CNS). Antigen presentation of myelin-derived proteins has been shown to trigger astrocyte response, suggesting that astrocytes can directly sense demyelination. However, the direct response of astrocytes to lipid-debris generated during demyelination has not been investigated. The lipid composition of the myelin sheath is distinct, presenting significant amounts of cerebrosides, sulfocerebrosides (SCB), and ceramides. Studies have shown that microglia are activated in the presence of myelin-derived lipids, pointing to the possibility of lipid-induced astrocyte activation. In this study, a human astrocyte cell line was exposed to liposomes enriched in each myelin lipid component. Although liposome uptake was observed for all compositions, astrocytes had augmented uptake for liposomes containing sulfocerebroside (SCB). This enhanced uptake did not modify their expression of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) molecules or secretion of chemokines. This was in contrast to changes observed in astrocyte cells stimulated with IFNγ. Contrary to human monocytes, astrocytes did not internalize beads in the size-range of liposomes, indicating that liposome uptake is lipid specific. Epifluorescence microscopy corroborated that liposome uptake takes place through endocytosis. Soluble SCB were found to partially block uptake of liposomes containing this same lipid. Endocytosis was not decreased when cells were treated with cytochalasin D, but it was decreased by cold temperature incubation. The specific uptake of SCB in the absence of a proinflammatory response indicates that astrocytes may participate in the trafficking and regulation of sulfocerebroside metabolism and homeostasis in the CNS. Copyright © 2013 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

  16. Understanding the NG2 glial scar after spinal cord injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amber R Hackett

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available NG2 cells, also known as oligodendrocyte progenitor cells, are located throughout the central nervous system and serve as a pool of progenitors to differentiate into oligodendrocytes. In response to spinal cord injury, NG2 cells increase their proliferation and differentiation into remyelinating oligodendrocytes. While astrocytes are typically associated with being the major cell type in the glial scar, many NG2 cells also accumulate within the glial scar but their function remains poorly understood. Similar to astrocytes, these cells hypertrophy, upregulate expression of chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans, inhibit axon regeneration, contribute to the glial-fibrotic scar border, and some even differentiate into astrocytes. Whether NG2 cells also have a role in other astrocyte functions, such as preventing the spread of infiltrating leukocytes and expression of inflammatory cytokines, is not yet known. Thus, NG2 cells are not only important for remyelination after spinal cord injury, but are also a major component of the glial scar with functions that overlap with astrocytes in this region. In this review, we describe the signaling pathways important for the proliferation and differentiation of NG2 cells, as well as the role of NG2 cells in scar formation and tissue repair.

  17. 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.

  18. Alteration of astrocytes and Wnt/β-catenin signaling in the frontal cortex of autistic subjects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cao Fujiang

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impairments in social interaction, verbal communication and repetitive behaviors. To date the etiology of this disorder is poorly understood. Studies suggest that astrocytes play critical roles in neural plasticity by detecting neuronal activity and modulating neuronal networks. Recently, a number of studies suggested that an abnormal function of glia/astrocytes may be involved in the development of autism. However, there is yet no direct evidence showing how astrocytes develop in the brain of autistic individuals. Methods Study subjects include brain tissue from autistic subjects, BTBR T + tfJ (BTBR and Neuroligin (NL-3 knock-down mice. Western blot analysis, Immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy studies have be used to examine the density and morphology of astrocytes, as well as Wnt and β-catenin protein expression. Results In this study, we demonstrate that the astrocytes in autisitcsubjects exhibit significantly reduced branching processes, total branching length and cell body sizes. We also detected an astrocytosis in the frontal cortex of autistic subjects. In addition, we found that the astrocytes in the brain of an NL3 knockdown mouse exhibited similar alterations to what we found in the autistic brain. Furthermore, we detected that both Wnt and β-catenin proteins are decreased in the frontal cortex of autistic subjects. Wnt/β-catenin pathway has been suggested to be involved in the regulation of astrocyte development. Conclusions Our findings imply that defects in astrocytes could impair neuronal plasticity and partially contribute to the development of autistic-like behaviors in both humans and mice. The alteration of Wnt/β-catenin pathway in the brain of autistic subjects may contribute to the changes of astrocytes.

  19. A 3D nanofibrous hydrogel and collagen sponge scaffold promotes locomotor functional recovery, spinal repair, and neuronal regeneration after complete transection of the spinal cord in adult rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaneko, Ai; Matsushita, Akira; Sankai, Yoshiyuki

    2015-01-01

    Central nervous system neurons in adult mammals display limited regeneration after injury, and functional recovery is poor following complete transection (>4 mm gap) of a rat spinal cord. A novel combination scaffold composed of 3D nanofibrous hydrogel PuraMatrix and a honeycomb collagen sponge was used to promote spinal repair and locomotor functional recovery following complete transection of the spinal cord in rats. We transplanted this scaffold into 5 mm spinal cord gaps and assessed spinal repair and functional recovery using the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor scale. The BBB score of the scaffold-transplanted group was significantly higher than that of the PBS-injected control group from 24 d to 4 months after the operation (P < 0.001–0.01), reaching 6.0  ±  0.75 (mean ± SEM) in the transplant and 0.70  ±  0.46 in the control groups. Neuronal regeneration and spinal repair were examined histologically using Pan Neuronal Marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein, growth-associated protein 43, and DAPI. The scaffolds were well integrated into the spinal cords, filling the 5 mm gaps with higher numbers of regenerated and migrated neurons, astrocytes, and other cells than in the control group. Mature and immature neurons and astrocytes in the scaffolds became colocalized and aligned longitudinally over >2 mm, suggesting their differentiation, maturation, and function. The spinal cord NF200 content of the transplant group, analyzed by western blot, was more than twice that of the control group, supporting the histological results. Transplantation of this novel scaffold promoted functional recovery, spinal repair, and neuronal regeneration. (paper)

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. α7 Nicotinic Receptor Promotes the Neuroprotective Functions of Astrocytes against Oxaliplatin Neurotoxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Di Cesare Mannelli

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuropathies are characterized by a complex response of the central nervous system to injuries. Glial cells are recruited to maintain neuronal homeostasis but dysregulated activation leads to pain signaling amplification and reduces the glial neuroprotective power. Recently, we highlighted the property of α7 nicotinic-acetylcholine-receptor (nAChR agonists to relieve pain and induce neuroprotection simultaneously with a strong increase in astrocyte density. Aimed to study the role of α7 nAChR in the neuron-glia cross-talk, we treated primary rat neurons and astrocytes with the neurotoxic anticancer drug oxaliplatin evaluating the effect of the α7 nAChR agonist PNU-282987 (PNU. Oxaliplatin (1 μM, 48 h reduced cell viability and increased caspase-3 activity of neuron monocultures without damaging astrocytes. In cocultures, astrocytes were not able to protect neurons by oxaliplatin even if glial cell metabolism was stimulated (pyruvate increase. On the contrary, the coculture incubation with 10 μM PNU improved neuron viability and inhibited apoptosis. In the absence of astrocytes, the protection disappeared. Furthermore, PNU promoted the release of the anti-inflammatory cytokine TGF-β1 and the expression of the glutamate-detoxifying enzyme glutamine synthetase. The α7 nAChR stimulation protects neurons from oxaliplatin toxicity through an astrocyte-mediated mechanism. α7 nAChR is suggested for recovering the homeostatic role of astrocytes.

  8. Dephosphorylation of 2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate and 2-deoxyglucose export from cultured astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forsyth, R J; Bartlett, K; Eyre, J

    1996-03-01

    Neurotransmitter-stimulated mobilization of astrocyte glycogen has been proposed as a basis for local energy homeostasis in brain. However, uncertainty remains over the fate of astrocyte glycogen. Upon transfer of cultured astrocytes pre-loaded with [2-3H]2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate at non-tracer concentrations to a glucose-free, 2-deoxyglucose-free medium, rapid dephosphorylation of a proportion of the intracellular 2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate pool and export of 2-deoxyglucose to the extracellular fluid occurs. Astrocytes show very low, basal rates of gluconeogenesis from pyruvate (approx. 1 nmol mg protein-1 h-1). Astrocytes in vivo may be capable of physiologically significant glucose export from glucose-6-phosphate. The low gluconeogenic activity in astrocytes suggests that the most likely source of glucose-6-phosphate may be glycogen. These findings support the hypothesis that export, as glucose, to adjacent neurons may be one of the possible fate(s) of astrocytic glycogen. Such export of glycogen as glucose occurring in response to increases in neuronal activity could contribute to energy homeostasis on a paracrine scale within brain.

  9. Activation of the Wnt/{beta}-catenin signaling pathway is associated with glial proliferation in the adult spinal cord of ALS transgenic mice

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    Chen, Yanchun [Department of Histology and Embryology, Weifang Medical University, Weifang, Shandong (China); Department of Histology and Embryology, Shandong University School of Medicine, Jinan, Shandong (China); Guan, Yingjun, E-mail: guanyj@wfmc.edu.cn [Department of Histology and Embryology, Weifang Medical University, Weifang, Shandong (China); Department of Histology and Embryology, Shandong University School of Medicine, Jinan, Shandong (China); Liu, Huancai [Department of Orthopedic, Affiliated Hospital, Weifang Medical University, Weifang, Shandong (China); Wu, Xin; Yu, Li; Wang, Shanshan; Zhao, Chunyan; Du, Hongmei [Department of Histology and Embryology, Weifang Medical University, Weifang, Shandong (China); Wang, Xin, E-mail: xwang@rics.bwh.harvard.edu [Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women' s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA (United States)

    2012-04-06

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Wnt3a and Cyclin D1 were upregulated in the spinal cord of the ALS mice. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer {beta}-catenin translocated from the cell membrane to the nucleus in the ALS mice. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Wnt3a, {beta}-catenin and Cyclin D1 co-localized for astrocytes were all increased. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer BrdU/Cyclin D1 double-positive cells were increased in the spinal cord of ALS mice. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer BrdU/Cyclin D1/GFAP triple-positive cells were detected in the ALS mice. -- Abstract: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive and fatal loss of motor neurons. In ALS, there is a significant cell proliferation in response to neurodegeneration; however, the exact molecular mechanisms of cell proliferation and differentiation are unclear. The Wnt signaling pathway has been shown to be involved in neurodegenerative processes. Wnt3a, {beta}-catenin, and Cyclin D1 are three key signaling molecules of the Wnt/{beta}-catenin signaling pathway. We determined the expression of Wnt3a, {beta}-catenin, and Cyclin D1 in the adult spinal cord of SOD1{sup G93A} ALS transgenic mice at different stages by RT-PCR, Western blot, and immunofluorescence labeling techniques. We found that the mRNA and protein of Wnt3a and Cyclin D1 in the spinal cord of the ALS mice were upregulated compared to those in wild-type mice. In addition, {beta}-catenin translocated from the cell membrane to the nucleus and subsequently activated transcription of the target gene, Cyclin D1. BrdU and Cyclin D1 double-positive cells were increased in the spinal cord of these mice. Moreover, Wnt3a, {beta}-catenin, and Cyclin D1 were also expressed in both neurons and astrocytes. The expression of Wnt3a, {beta}-catenin or Cyclin D1 in mature GFAP{sup +} astrocytes increased. Moreover, BrdU/Cyclin D1/GFAP triple-positive cells were detected in the ALS mice. Our findings suggest that

  10. Activation of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway is associated with glial proliferation in the adult spinal cord of ALS transgenic mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Yanchun; Guan, Yingjun; Liu, Huancai; Wu, Xin; Yu, Li; Wang, Shanshan; Zhao, Chunyan; Du, Hongmei; Wang, Xin

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Wnt3a and Cyclin D1 were upregulated in the spinal cord of the ALS mice. ► β-catenin translocated from the cell membrane to the nucleus in the ALS mice. ► Wnt3a, β-catenin and Cyclin D1 co-localized for astrocytes were all increased. ► BrdU/Cyclin D1 double-positive cells were increased in the spinal cord of ALS mice. ► BrdU/Cyclin D1/GFAP triple-positive cells were detected in the ALS mice. -- Abstract: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive and fatal loss of motor neurons. In ALS, there is a significant cell proliferation in response to neurodegeneration; however, the exact molecular mechanisms of cell proliferation and differentiation are unclear. The Wnt signaling pathway has been shown to be involved in neurodegenerative processes. Wnt3a, β-catenin, and Cyclin D1 are three key signaling molecules of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. We determined the expression of Wnt3a, β-catenin, and Cyclin D1 in the adult spinal cord of SOD1 G93A ALS transgenic mice at different stages by RT-PCR, Western blot, and immunofluorescence labeling techniques. We found that the mRNA and protein of Wnt3a and Cyclin D1 in the spinal cord of the ALS mice were upregulated compared to those in wild-type mice. In addition, β-catenin translocated from the cell membrane to the nucleus and subsequently activated transcription of the target gene, Cyclin D1. BrdU and Cyclin D1 double-positive cells were increased in the spinal cord of these mice. Moreover, Wnt3a, β-catenin, and Cyclin D1 were also expressed in both neurons and astrocytes. The expression of Wnt3a, β-catenin or Cyclin D1 in mature GFAP + astrocytes increased. Moreover, BrdU/Cyclin D1/GFAP triple-positive cells were detected in the ALS mice. Our findings suggest that neurodegeneration activates the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway, which is associated with glial proliferation in the adult spinal cord of ALS transgenic mice. This

  11. Is early cord clamping, delayed cord clamping or cord milking best?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vatansever, Binay; Demirel, Gamze; Ciler Eren, Elif; Erel, Ozcan; Neselioglu, Salim; Karavar, Hande Nur; Gundogdu, Semra; Ulfer, Gozde; Bahadir, Selcen; Tastekin, Ayhan

    2018-04-01

    To compare the antioxidant status of three cord clamping procedures (early clamping, delayed clamping and milking) by analyzing the thiol-disulfide balance. This randomized controlled study enrolled 189 term infants who were divided into three groups according to the cord clamping procedure: early clamping, delayed clamping and milking. Blood samples were collected from the umbilical arteries immediately after clamping, and the thiol/disulfide homeostasis was analyzed. The native and total thiol levels were significantly (p total thiol ratio was significantly (p = .026) lower in the delayed cord clamping and milking groups compared with the early clamping groups. Early cord clamping causes the production of more disulfide bonds and lower thiol levels, indicating that oxidation reactions are increased in the early cord clamping procedure compared with the delayed cord clamping and milking procedures. The oxidant capacity is greater with early cord clamping than with delayed clamping or cord milking. Delayed cord clamping or milking are beneficial in neonatal care, and we suggest that they be performed routinely in all deliveries.

  12. 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

  13. Astrocyte-neuron interaction in diphenyl ditelluride toxicity directed to the cytoskeleton

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heimfarth, Luana; Silva Ferreira, Fernanda da; Pierozan, Paula; Mingori, Moara Rodrigues; Moreira, José Cláudio Fonseca; Batista Teixeira da Rocha, João; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Diphenyl ditelluride is toxic to the cytoskeleton of neural cells in vitro. • Hypophosphorylation disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis and causes cell dysfunction. • Calcium signaling underlies hypophosphorylation of intermediate filaments. • Actin disorganization causes altered astrocyte morphology. • Astrocyte cytoskeleton is more susceptible than neuronal cytoskeleton. - Abstract: Diphenylditelluride (PhTe) 2 is a neurotoxin that disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis. We are showing that different concentrations of (PhTe) 2 caused hypophosphorylation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), vimentin and neurofilament subunits (NFL, NFM and NFH) and altered actin organization in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons from cerebral cortex of rats. These mechanisms were mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors without participation of either L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels (L-VDCC) or metabotropic glutamate receptors. Upregulated Ca 2+ influx downstream of NMDA receptors activated Ca 2+ -dependent protein phosphatase 2B (PP2B) causing hypophosphorylation of astrocyte and neuron IFs. Immunocytochemistry showed that hypophosphorylated intermediate filaments (IF) failed to disrupt their organization into the cytoskeleton. However, phalloidin-actin-FITC stained cytoskeleton evidenced misregulation of actin distribution, cell spreading and increased stress fibers in astrocytes. βIII tubulin staining showed that neurite meshworks are not altered by (PhTe) 2 , suggesting greater susceptibility of astrocytes than neurons to (PheTe) 2 toxicity. These findings indicate that signals leading to IF hypophosphorylation fail to disrupt the cytoskeletal IF meshwork of interacting astrocytes and neurons in vitro however astrocyte actin network seems more susceptible. Our findings support that intracellular Ca 2+ is one of the crucial signals that modulate the action of (PhTe) 2 in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons and highlights the cytoskeleton

  14. Characterization of Amino Acid Profile and Enzymatic Activity in Adult Rat Astrocyte Cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Débora Guerini; Bellaver, Bruna; Hansel, Gisele; Arús, Bernardo Assein; Bellaver, Gabriela; Longoni, Aline; Kolling, Janaina; Wyse, Angela T S; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2016-07-01

    Astrocytes are multitasking players in brain complexity, possessing several receptors and mechanisms to detect, participate and modulate neuronal communication. The functionality of astrocytes has been mainly unraveled through the study of primary astrocyte cultures, and recently our research group characterized a model of astrocyte cultures derived from adult Wistar rats. We, herein, aim to characterize other basal functions of these cells to explore the potential of this model for studying the adult brain. To characterize the astrocytic phenotype, we determined the presence of GFAP, GLAST and GLT 1 proteins in cells by immunofluorescence. Next, we determined the concentrations of thirteen amino acids, ATP, ADP, adenosine and calcium in astrocyte cultures, as well as the activities of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase and acetylcholine esterase. Furthermore, we assessed the presence of the GABA transporter 1 (GAT 1) and cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB 1) in the astrocytes. Cells demonstrated the presence of glutamine, consistent with their role in the glutamate-glutamine cycle, as well as glutamate and D-serine, amino acids classically known to act as gliotransmitters. ATP was produced and released by the cells and ADP was consumed. Calcium levels were in agreement with those reported in the literature, as were the enzymatic activities measured. The presence of GAT 1 was detected, but the presence of CB 1 was not, suggesting a decreased neuroprotective capacity in adult astrocytes under in vitro conditions. Taken together, our results show cellular functionality regarding the astrocytic role in gliotransmission and neurotransmitter management since they are able to produce and release gliotransmitters and to modulate the cholinergic and GABAergic systems.

  15. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Cord Injury What is a Spinal Cord Injury Levels of Injury and What They Mean Animated Spinal ... Cord Injury What is a Spinal Cord Injury Levels of Injury and What They Mean Animated Spinal ...

  16. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available menu Understanding Spinal Cord Injury What is a Spinal Cord Injury Levels of Injury and What They Mean Animated Spinal Cord Injury Chart Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal ...

  17. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Pediatric Spinal ... Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Pediatric Spinal ...

  18. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Cord Injury Rehabilitation Pediatric Spinal Cord Injuries Video Library SCI Medical Experts People Living with SCI Personal ... Cord Injury Rehabilitation Pediatric Spinal Cord Injuries Video Library SCI Medical Experts People Living with SCI Personal ...

  19. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Animated Spinal Cord Injury Chart Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal ... Animated Spinal Cord Injury Chart Spinal Cord Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal ...

  20. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José J. Miguel-Hidalgo

    2018-03-01

    oligodendrocytes not only at the Nodes of Ranvier (NR, but also in gap junction-based astrocyte-oligodendrocyte contacts and other forms of cell-to-cell communication now understood to be critical for the maintenance and formation of myelin. Close interactions between astrocytes and oligodendrocytes also suggest that therapies for alcoholism based on a specific glial cell type pathology will require a better understanding of molecular interactions between different cell types, as well as considering the possibility of using combined molecular approaches for more effective therapies.

  2. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Neuronal glucose metabolism is impaired while astrocytic TCA cycling is unaffected at symptomatic stages in the hSOD1G93A mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tefera, Tesfaye W; Borges, Karin

    2018-01-01

    Although alterations in energy metabolism are known in ALS, the specific mechanisms leading to energy deficit are not understood. We measured metabolite levels derived from injected [1- 13 C]glucose and [1,2- 13 C]acetate (i.p.) in cerebral cortex and spinal cord extracts of wild type and hSOD1 G93A mice at onset and mid disease stages using high-pressure liquid chromatography, 1 H and 13 C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Levels of spinal and cortical CNS total lactate, [3- 13 C]lactate, total alanine and [3- 13 C]alanine, but not cortical glucose and [1- 13 C]glucose, were reduced mostly at mid stage indicating impaired glycolysis. The [1- 13 C]glucose-derived [4- 13 C]glutamate, [4- 13 C]glutamine and [2- 13 C]GABA amounts were diminished at mid stage in cortex and both time points in spinal cord, suggesting decreased [3- 13 C]pyruvate entry into the TCA cycle. Lack of changes in [1,2- 13 C]acetate-derived [4,5- 13 C]glutamate, [4,5- 13 C]glutamine and [1,2- 13 C]GABA levels indicate unchanged astrocytic 13 C-acetate metabolism. Reduced levels of leucine, isoleucine and valine in CNS suggest compensatory breakdown to refill TCA cycle intermediate levels. Unlabelled, [2- 13 C] and [4- 13 C]GABA concentrations were decreased in spinal cord indicating that impaired glucose metabolism contributes to hyperexcitability and supporting the use of treatments which increase GABA amounts. In conclusion, CNS glucose metabolism is compromised, while astrocytic TCA cycling appears to be normal in the hSOD1 G93A mouse model at symptomatic disease stages.

  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. Large-scale recording of astrocyte activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Three-dimensional culture conditions differentially affect astrocyte modulation of brain endothelial barrier function in response to transforming growth factor β1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Brian T; Grego, Sonia; Sellgren, Katelyn L

    2015-05-22

    Blood-brain barrier (BBB) function is regulated by dynamic interactions among cell types within the neurovascular unit, including astrocytes and endothelial cells. Co-culture models of the BBB typically involve astrocytes seeded on two-dimensional (2D) surfaces, which recent studies indicate cause astrocytes to express a phenotype similar to that of reactive astrocytes in situ. We hypothesized that the culture conditions of astrocytes would differentially affect their ability to modulate BBB function in vitro. Brain endothelial cells were grown alone or in co-culture with astrocytes. Astrocytes were grown either as conventional (2D) monolayers, or in a collagen-based gel which allows them to grow in a three-dimensional (3D) construct. Astrocytes were viable in 3D conditions, and displayed a marked reduction in their expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), suggesting reduced activation. Stimulation of astrocytes with transforming growth factor (TGF)β1 decreased transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) and reduced expression of claudin-5 in co-cultures, whereas treatment of endothelial cells in the absence of astrocytes was without effect. The effect of TGFβ1 on TEER was significantly more pronounced in endothelial cells cultured with 3D astrocytes compared to 2D astrocytes. These results demonstrate that astrocyte culture conditions differentially affect their ability to modulate brain endothelial barrier function, and suggest a direct relationship between reactive gliosis and BBB permeability. Moreover, these studies demonstrate the potential importance of physiologically relevant culture conditions to in vitro modeling of disease processes that affect the neurovascular unit. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Computational Models of Neuron-Astrocyte Interactions Lead to Improved Efficacy in the Performance of Neural Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarellos-González, Alberto; Pazos, Alejandro; Porto-Pazos, Ana B.

    2012-01-01

    The importance of astrocytes, one part of the glial system, for information processing in the brain has recently been demonstrated. Regarding information processing in multilayer connectionist systems, it has been shown that systems which include artificial neurons and astrocytes (Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks) have well-known advantages over identical systems including only artificial neurons. Since the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is unknown, we have investigated, using computational models, different astrocyte-neuron interactions for information processing; different neuron-glia algorithms have been implemented for training and validation of multilayer Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks oriented toward classification problem resolution. The results of the tests performed suggest that all the algorithms modelling astrocyte-induced synaptic potentiation improved artificial neural network performance, but their efficacy depended on the complexity of the problem. PMID:22649480

  12. 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.

  13. Neuronal and glial expression of inward rectifier potassium channel subunits Kir2.x in rat dorsal root ganglion and spinal cord.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murata, Yuzo; Yasaka, Toshiharu; Takano, Makoto; Ishihara, Keiko

    2016-03-23

    Inward rectifier K(+) channels of the Kir2.x subfamily play important roles in controlling the neuronal excitability. Although their cellular localization in the brain has been extensively studied, only a few studies have examined their expression in the spinal cord and peripheral nervous system. In this study, immunohistochemical analyses of Kir2.1, Kir2.2, and Kir2.3 expression were performed in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and spinal cord using bright-field and confocal microscopy. In DRG, most ganglionic neurons expressed Kir2.1, Kir2.2 and Kir2.3, whereas satellite glial cells chiefly expressed Kir2.3. In the spinal cord, Kir2.1, Kir2.2 and Kir2.3 were all expressed highly in the gray matter of dorsal and ventral horns and moderately in the white matter also. Within the gray matter, the expression was especially high in the substantia gelatinosa (lamina II). Confocal images obtained using markers for neuronal cells, NeuN, and astrocytes, Sox9, showed expression of all three Kir2 subunits in both neuronal somata and astrocytes in lamina I-III of the dorsal horn and the lateral spinal nucleus of the dorsolateral funiculus. Immunoreactive signals other than those in neuronal and glial somata were abundant in lamina I and II, which probably located mainly in nerve fibers or nerve terminals. Colocalization of Kir2.1 and 2.3 and that of Kir2.2 and 2.3 were present in neuronal and glial somata. In the ventral horn, motor neurons and interneurons were also immunoreactive with the three Kir2 subunits. Our study suggests that Kir2 channels composed of Kir2.1-2.3 subunits are expressed in neuronal and glial cells in the DRG and spinal cord, contributing to sensory transduction and motor control. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. Astrocytic IL-6 mediates locomotor activity, exploration, anxiety, learning and social behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erta, Maria; Giralt, Mercedes; Esposito, Flavia Lorena; Fernandez-Gayol, Olaya; Hidalgo, Juan

    2015-07-01

    Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a major cytokine in the central nervous system, secreted by different brain cells and with roles in a number of physiological functions. We herewith confirm and expand the importance of astrocytic production of and response to IL-6 by using transgenic mice deficient in astrocytic IL-6 (Ast-IL-6 KO) or in its receptor (Ast-IL-6R KO) in full C57Bl/6 genetic background. A major prosurvival effect of astrocytic IL-6 at early ages was clearly demonstrated. Robust effects were also evident in the control of activity and anxiety in the hole-board and elevated plus-maze, and in spatial learning in the Morris water-maze. The results also suggest an inhibitory role of IL-6 in the mechanism controlling the consolidation of hippocampus-dependent spatial learning. Less robust effects of astrocytic IL-6 system were also observed in despair behavior in the tail suspension test, and social behavior in the dominance and resident-intruder tests. The behavioral phenotype was highly dependent on age and/or sex in some cases. The phenotype of Ast-IL-6R KO mice mimicked only partially that of Ast-IL-6KO mice, which indicates both a role of astrocytes in behavior and the participation of other cells besides astrocytes. No evidences of altered function of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis were observed. These results demonstrate that astrocytic IL-6 (acting at least partially in astrocytes) regulates normal behavior in mice. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Cholesterol efflux is differentially regulated in neurons and astrocytes: implications for brain cholesterol homeostasis

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    Chen, Jing; Zhang, Xiaolu; Kusumo, Handojo; Costa, Lucio G.; Guizzetti, Marina

    2012-01-01

    Disruption of cholesterol homeostasis in the central nervous system (CNS) has been associated with neurological, neurodegenerative, and neurodevelopmental disorders. The CNS is a closed system with regard to cholesterol homeostasis, as cholesterol-delivering lipoproteins from the periphery cannot pass the blood-brain-barrier and enter the brain. Different cell types in the brain have different functions in the regulation of cholesterol homeostasis, with astrocytes producing and releasing apolipoprotein E and lipoproteins, and neurons metabolizing cholesterol to 24(S)-hydroxycholesterol. We present evidence that astrocytes and neurons adopt different mechanisms also in regulating cholesterol efflux. We found that in astrocytes cholesterol efflux is induced by both lipid-free apolipoproteins and lipoproteins, while cholesterol removal from neurons is triggered only by lipoproteins. The main pathway by which apolipoproteins induce cholesterol efflux is through ABCA1. By upregulating ABCA1 levels and by inhibiting its activity and silencing its expression, we show that ABCA1 is involved in cholesterol efflux from astrocytes but not from neurons. Furthermore, our results suggest that ABCG1 is involved in cholesterol efflux to apolipoproteins and lipoproteins from astrocytes but not from neurons, while ABCG4, whose expression is much higher in neurons than astrocytes, is involved in cholesterol efflux from neurons but not astrocytes. These results indicate that different mechanisms regulate cholesterol efflux from neurons and astrocytes, reflecting the different roles that these cell types play in brain cholesterol homeostasis. These results are important in understanding cellular targets of therapeutic drugs under development for the treatments of conditions associated with altered cholesterol homeostasis in the CNS. PMID:23010475

  18. 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

  19. Stochastic nanoroughness modulates neuron-astrocyte interactions and function via mechanosensing cation channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenthal, Nils R; Hermanson, Ola; Heimrich, Bernd; Shastri, V Prasad

    2014-11-11

    Extracellular soluble signals are known to play a critical role in maintaining neuronal function and homeostasis in the CNS. However, the CNS is also composed of extracellular matrix macromolecules and glia support cells, and the contribution of the physical attributes of these components in maintenance and regulation of neuronal function is not well understood. Because these components possess well-defined topography, we theorize a role for topography in neuronal development and we demonstrate that survival and function of hippocampal neurons and differentiation of telencephalic neural stem cells is modulated by nanoroughness. At roughnesses corresponding to that of healthy astrocytes, hippocampal neurons dissociated and survived independent from astrocytes and showed superior functional traits (increased polarity and calcium flux). Furthermore, telencephalic neural stem cells differentiated into neurons even under exogenous signals that favor astrocytic differentiation. The decoupling of neurons from astrocytes seemed to be triggered by changes to astrocyte apical-surface topography in response to nanoroughness. Blocking signaling through mechanosensing cation channels using GsMTx4 negated the ability of neurons to sense the nanoroughness and promoted decoupling of neurons from astrocytes, thus providing direct evidence for the role of nanotopography in neuron-astrocyte interactions. We extrapolate the role of topography to neurodegenerative conditions and show that regions of amyloid plaque buildup in brain tissue of Alzheimer's patients are accompanied by detrimental changes in tissue roughness. These findings suggest a role for astrocyte and ECM-induced topographical changes in neuronal pathologies and provide new insights for developing therapeutic targets and engineering of neural biomaterials.

  20. Exocytosis of ATP From Astrocytes Modulates Phasic and Tonic Inhibition in the Neocortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasooli-Nejad, Seyed; Andrew, Jemma; Haydon, Philip G.; Pankratov, Yuriy

    2014-01-01

    Communication between neuronal and glial cells is important for many brain functions. Astrocytes can modulate synaptic strength via Ca2+-stimulated release of various gliotransmitters, including glutamate and ATP. A physiological role of ATP release from astrocytes was suggested by its contribution to glial Ca2+-waves and purinergic modulation of neuronal activity and sleep homeostasis. The mechanisms underlying release of gliotransmitters remain uncertain, and exocytosis is the most intriguing and debated pathway. We investigated release of ATP from acutely dissociated cortical astrocytes using “sniff-cell” approach and demonstrated that release is vesicular in nature and can be triggered by elevation of intracellular Ca2+ via metabotropic and ionotropic receptors or direct UV-uncaging. The exocytosis of ATP from neocortical astrocytes occurred in the millisecond time scale contrasting with much slower nonvesicular release of gliotransmitters via Best1 and TREK-1 channels, reported recently in hippocampus. Furthermore, we discovered that elevation of cytosolic Ca2+ in cortical astrocytes triggered the release of ATP that directly activated quantal purinergic currents in the pyramidal neurons. The glia-driven burst of purinergic currents in neurons was followed by significant attenuation of both synaptic and tonic inhibition. The Ca2+-entry through the neuronal P2X purinoreceptors led to phosphorylation-dependent down-regulation of GABAA receptors. The negative purinergic modulation of postsynaptic GABA receptors was accompanied by small presynaptic enhancement of GABA release. Glia-driven purinergic modulation of inhibitory transmission was not observed in neurons when astrocytes expressed dn-SNARE to impair exocytosis. The astrocyte-driven purinergic currents and glia-driven modulation of GABA receptors were significantly reduced in the P2X4 KO mice. Our data provide a key evidence to support the physiological importance of exocytosis of ATP from astrocytes

  1. Exocytosis of ATP from astrocytes modulates phasic and tonic inhibition in the neocortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulyana Lalo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Communication between neuronal and glial cells is important for many brain functions. Astrocytes can modulate synaptic strength via Ca(2+-stimulated release of various gliotransmitters, including glutamate and ATP. A physiological role of ATP release from astrocytes was suggested by its contribution to glial Ca(2+-waves and purinergic modulation of neuronal activity and sleep homeostasis. The mechanisms underlying release of gliotransmitters remain uncertain, and exocytosis is the most intriguing and debated pathway. We investigated release of ATP from acutely dissociated cortical astrocytes using "sniff-cell" approach and demonstrated that release is vesicular in nature and can be triggered by elevation of intracellular Ca(2+ via metabotropic and ionotropic receptors or direct UV-uncaging. The exocytosis of ATP from neocortical astrocytes occurred in the millisecond time scale contrasting with much slower nonvesicular release of gliotransmitters via Best1 and TREK-1 channels, reported recently in hippocampus. Furthermore, we discovered that elevation of cytosolic Ca(2+ in cortical astrocytes triggered the release of ATP that directly activated quantal purinergic currents in the pyramidal neurons. The glia-driven burst of purinergic currents in neurons was followed by significant attenuation of both synaptic and tonic inhibition. The Ca(2+-entry through the neuronal P2X purinoreceptors led to phosphorylation-dependent down-regulation of GABAA receptors. The negative purinergic modulation of postsynaptic GABA receptors was accompanied by small presynaptic enhancement of GABA release. Glia-driven purinergic modulation of inhibitory transmission was not observed in neurons when astrocytes expressed dn-SNARE to impair exocytosis. The astrocyte-driven purinergic currents and glia-driven modulation of GABA receptors were significantly reduced in the P2X4 KO mice. Our data provide a key evidence to support the physiological importance of exocytosis of

  2. GFAP and Fos immunoreactivity in lumbo-sacral spinal cord and medulla oblongata after chronic colonic inflammation in rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yi-Ning; Luo, Jin-Yan; Rao, Zhi-Ren; Lan, Li; Duan, Li

    2005-01-01

    AIM: To investigate the response of astrocytes and neurons in rat lumbo-sacral spinal cord and medulla oblongata induced by chronic colonic inflammation, and the relationship between them. METHODS: Thirty-three male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into two groups: experimental group (n = 17), colonic inflammation was induced by intra-luminal administration of trinitrobenzenesulfonic acid (TNBS); control group (n = 16), saline was administered intra-luminally. After 3, 7, 14, and 28 d of administration, the lumbo-sacral spinal cord and medulla oblongata were removed and processed for anti-glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), Fos and GFAP/Fos immunohistochemistry. RESULTS: Activated astrocytes positive for GFAP were mainly distributed in the superficial laminae (laminae I-II) of dorsal horn, intermediolateral nucleus (laminae V), posterior commissural nucleus (laminae X) and anterolateral nucleus (laminae IX). Fos-IR (Fos-immunoreactive) neurons were mainly distributed in the deeper laminae of the spinal cord (laminae III-IV, V-VI). In the medulla oblongata, both GFAP-IR astrocytes and Fos-IR neurons were mainly distributed in the medullary visceral zone (MVZ). The density of GFAP in the spinal cord of experimental rats was significantly higher after 3, 7, and 14 d of TNBS administration compared with the controls (50.4±16.8, 29.2±6.5, 24.1±5.6, P0.05). CONCLUSION: Astrocytes in spinal cord and medulla oblongata can be activated by colonic inflammation. The activated astrocytes are closely related to Fos-IR neurons. With the recovery of colonic inflammation, the activity of astrocytes in the spinal cord and medulla oblongata is reduced. PMID:16097052

  3. Regulation of neuron-astrocyte metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petit, J-M; Magistretti, P J

    2016-05-26

    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 synaptic functioning when neurons undergo rapid and repetitive changes in the firing rate such as during the sleep/wake transitions. Investigations into brain energy metabolism during the sleep/wake cycle have been mainly focused on glucose (Gluc) consumption and on glycogen metabolism. However, the recent development of substrate-specific biosensors allowed measurements of the variation in extracellular levels of glutamate, Gluc and lactate (Lac) with a time resolution compatible with sleep stage duration. Together with gene expression data these experiments allowed to better define the variations of energy metabolite regulation across the sleep/wake cycle. The aim of this review is to bring into perspective the role of astrocytes and NMC 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. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  4. Distinct Molecular Effects of Angiotensin II and Angiotensin III in Rat Astrocytes

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    Michelle A. Clark

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available It is postulated that central effects of angiotensin (Ang II may be indirect due to rapid conversion to Ang III by aminopeptidase A (APA. Previously, we showed that Ang II and Ang III induced mitogen-activated protein (MAP kinases ERK1/2 and stress-activated protein kinase/Jun-terminal kinases (SAPK/JNK phosphorylation in cultured rat astrocytes. Most importantly, both peptides were equipotent in causing phosphorylation of these MAP kinases. In these studies, we used brainstem and cerebellum astrocytes to determine whether Ang II’s phosphorylation of these MAP kinases is due to the conversion of the peptide to Ang III. We pretreated astrocytes with 10 μM amastatin A or 100 μM glutamate phosphonate, selective APA inhibitors, prior to stimulating with either Ang II or Ang III. Both peptides were equipotent in stimulating ERK1/2 and SAPK/JNK phosphorylation. The APA inhibitors failed to prevent Ang II- and Ang III-mediated phosphorylation of the MAP kinases. Further, pretreatment of astrocytes with the APA inhibitors did not affect Ang II- or Ang III-induced astrocyte growth. These findings suggest that both peptides directly induce phosphorylation of these MAP kinases as well as induce astrocyte growth. These studies establish both peptides as biologically active with similar intracellular and physiological effects.

  5. Astrocytic Ca2+ signals are required for the functional integrity of tripartite synapses

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    Tanaka Mika

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neuronal activity alters calcium ion (Ca2+ dynamics in astrocytes, but the physiologic relevance of these changes is controversial. To examine this issue further, we generated an inducible transgenic mouse model in which the expression of an inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate absorbent, “IP3 sponge”, attenuates astrocytic Ca2+ signaling. Results Attenuated Ca2+ activity correlated with reduced astrocytic coverage of asymmetric synapses in the hippocampal CA1 region in these animals. The decreased astrocytic ‘protection’ of the synapses facilitated glutamate ‘spillover’, which was reflected by prolonged glutamate transporter currents in stratum radiatum astrocytes and enhanced N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor currents in CA1 pyramidal neurons in response to burst stimulation. These mice also exhibited behavioral impairments in spatial reference memory and remote contextual fear memory, in which hippocampal circuits are involved. Conclusions Our findings suggest that IP3-mediated astrocytic Ca2+ signaling correlates with the formation of functional tripartite synapses in the hippocampus.

  6. Long-term neuroglobin expression of human astrocytes following brain trauma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiameng; Liu, Yuan; Zhang, Lin; Zhu, Peng; Zhu, Haibiao; Yang, Yu; Guan, Peng

    2015-10-08

    Neuroglobin (Ngb), a 17 kDa monomeric protein, was initially described as a vertebrate oxygen-binding heme protein in 2000 and detected in metabolically active organs or cells, like the brain, peripheral nervous system as well as certain endocrine cells. A large array of initial experimental work reported that Ngb displayed a neuron restricted expression pattern in mammalian brains. However, growing evidence indicated astrocytes may also express Ngb under pathological conditions. To address the question whether human astrocytes express Ngb under traumatic insults, we investigated Ngb immuno-reactivity in post-mortem human brain tissues that died of acute, sub-acute and chronic brain trauma, respectively. We observed astrocytic Ngb expression in sub-acute and chronic traumatic brains rather than acute traumatic brains. Strikingly, the Ngb immuno-reactive astrocytes were still strongly detectable in groups that died 12 months after brain trauma. Our findings may imply an unexplored role of Ngb in astrocytes and the involved mechanisms were suggested to be further characterized. Also, therapeutic application of Ngb or Ngb-inducible chemical compounds in neuro-genesis or astrocytic scar forming can be expected. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Astrocytes play a key role in activation of microglia by persistent Borna disease virus infection

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    Sauder Christian

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Neonatal Borna disease virus (BDV infection of the rat brain is associated with microglial activation and damage to certain neuronal populations. Since persistent BDV infection of neurons is nonlytic in vitro, activated microglia have been suggested to be responsible for neuronal cell death in vivo. However, the mechanisms of activation of microglia in neonatally BDV-infected rat brains remain unclear. Our previous studies have shown that activation of microglia by BDV in culture requires the presence of astrocytes as neither the virus nor BDV-infected neurons alone activate microglia. Here, we evaluated the mechanisms whereby astrocytes can contribute to activation of microglia in neuron-glia-microglia mixed cultures. We found that persistent infection of neuronal cells leads to activation of uninfected astrocytes as measured by elevated expression of RANTES. Activation of astrocytes then produces activation of microglia as evidenced by increased formation of round-shaped, MHCI-, MHCII- and IL-6-positive microglia cells. Our analysis of possible molecular mechanisms of activation of astrocytes and/or microglia in culture indicates that the mediators of activation may be soluble heat-resistant, low molecular weight factors. The findings indicate that astrocytes may mediate activation of microglia by BDV-infected neurons. The data are consistent with the hypothesis that microglia activation in the absence of neuronal damage may represent initial steps in the gradual neurodegeneration observed in brains of neonatally BDV-infected rats.

  8. Intracellular ascorbic acid inhibits transport of glucose by neurons, but not by astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Maite A; Pozo, Miguel; Cortés, Christian; García, María de Los Angeles; Concha, Ilona I; Nualart, Francisco

    2007-08-01

    It has been demonstrated that glutamatergic activity induces ascorbic acid (AA) depletion in astrocytes. Additionally, different data indicate that AA may inhibit glucose accumulation in primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons. Thus, our hypothesis postulates that AA released from the astrocytes during glutamatergic synaptic activity may inhibit glucose uptake by neurons. We observed that cultured neurons express the sodium-vitamin C cotransporter 2 and the facilitative glucose transporters (GLUT) 1 and 3, however, in hippocampal brain slices GLUT3 was the main transporter detected. Functional activity of GLUTs was confirmed by means of kinetic analysis using 2-deoxy-d-glucose. Therefore, we showed that AA, once accumulated inside the cell, inhibits glucose transport in both cortical and hippocampal neurons in culture. Additionally, we showed that astrocytes are not affected by AA. Using hippocampal slices, we observed that upon blockade of monocarboxylate utilization by alpha-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamate and after glucose deprivation, glucose could rescue neuronal response to electrical stimulation only if AA uptake is prevented. Finally, using a transwell system of separated neuronal and astrocytic cultures, we observed that glutamate can reduce glucose transport in neurons only in presence of AA-loaded astrocytes, suggesting the essential role of astrocyte-released AA in this effect.

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

    KAUST Repository

    Petit, Jean-Marie

    2015-12-17

    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 the energy production to the 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 synaptic functioning when neurons undergo rapid and repetitive changes in firing rate such as during the sleep/wake transitions. Investigations on brain energy metabolism during the sleep/wake cycle have been mainly focused on glucose consumption and on glycogen metabolism. However, the recent development of substrate-specific biosensors allowed measurements of the variation in extracellular levels of glutamate, glucose and lactate with a time resolution compatible with sleep stage duration. Together with gene expression data these experiments allowed to better define the variations of energy metabolites regulation across the sleep/wake cycle. 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.

  10. Lycopene ameliorates neuropathic pain by upregulating spinal astrocytic connexin 43 expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fang Fang; Morioka, Norimitsu; Kitamura, Tomoya; Fujii, Shiori; Miyauchi, Kazuki; Nakamura, Yoki; Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2016-06-15

    Peripheral nerve injury upregulates tumor necrosis factor (TNF) expression. In turn, connexin 43 (Cx43) expression in spinal astrocytes is downregulated by TNF. Therefore, restoration of spinal astrocyte Cx43 expression to normal level could lead to the reduction of nerve injury-induced pain. While the non-provitaminic carotenoid lycopene reverses thermal hyperalgesia in mice with painful diabetic neuropathy, the antinociceptive mechanism is not entirely clear. The current study evaluated whether the antinociceptive effect of lycopene is mediated through the modulation of Cx43 expression in spinal astrocytes. The effect of lycopene on Cx43 expression was examined in cultured rat spinal astrocytes. The effect of intrathecal lycopene on Cx43 expression and neuropathic pain were evaluated in mice with partial sciatic nerve ligation (PSNL). Treatment of cultured rat spinal astrocytes with lycopene reversed TNF-induced downregulation of Cx43 protein expression through a transcription-independent mechanism. By contrast, treatment of cultured spinal astrocytes with either pro-vitamin A carotenoid β-carotene or antioxidant N-acetyl cysteine had no effect on TNF-induced downregulation of Cx43 protein expression. In addition, repeated, but not single, intrathecal treatment with lycopene of mice with a partial sciatic nerve ligation significantly prevented not only the downregulation of Cx43 expression in spinal dorsal horn but mechanical hypersensitivity as well. The current findings suggest a significant spinal mechanism that mediates the analgesic effect of lycopene, through the restoration of normal spinal Cx43 expression. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Neural differentiation of novel multipotent progenitor cells from cryopreserved human umbilical cord blood

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Myoung Woo; Moon, Young Joon; Yang, Mal Sook; Kim, Sun Kyung; Jang, In Keun; Eom, Young-woo; Park, Joon Seong; Kim, Hugh C.; Song, Kye Yong; Park, Soon Cheol; Lim, Hwan Sub; Kim, Young Jin

    2007-01-01

    Umbilical cord blood (UCB) is a rich source of hematopoietic stem cells, with practical and ethical advantages. To date, the presence of other stem cells in UCB remains to be established. We investigated whether other stem cells are present in cryopreserved UCB. Seeded mononuclear cells formed adherent colonized cells in optimized culture conditions. Over a 4- to 6-week culture period, colonized cells gradually developed into adherent mono-layer cells, which exhibited homogeneous fibroblast-like morphology and immunophenotypes, and were highly proliferative. Isolated cells were designated 'multipotent progenitor cells (MPCs)'. Under appropriate conditions for 2 weeks, MPCs differentiated into neural tissue-specific cell types, including neuron, astrocyte, and oligodendrocyte. Differentiated cells presented their respective markers, specifically, NF-L and NSE for neurons, GFAP for astrocytes, and myelin/oligodendrocyte for oligodendrocytes. In this study, we successfully isolated MPCs from cryopreserved UCB, which differentiated into the neural tissue-specific cell types. These findings suggest that cryopreserved human UCB is a useful alternative source of neural progenitor cells, such as MPCs, for experimental and therapeutic applications

  12. 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.

  13. Bicarbonate sensing in mouse cortical astrocytes during extracellular acid/base disturbances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naoshin, Zinnia; Defren, Sabrina; Schmaelzle, Jana; Weber, Tobias; Schneider, Hans‐Peter

    2017-01-01

    Key points The present study suggests that the electrogenic sodium–bicarbonate cotransporter, NBCe1, supported by carbonic anhydrase II, CAII, provides an efficient mechanism of bicarbonate sensing in cortical astrocytes. This mechanism is proposed to play a major role in setting the pHi responses to extracellular acid/base challenges in astrocytes.A decrease in extracellular [HCO3 −] during isocapnic acidosis and isohydric hypocapnia, or an increase in intracellular [HCO3 −] during hypercapnic acidosis, was effectively sensed by NBCe1, which carried bicarbonate out of the cells under these conditions, and caused an acidification and sodium fall in WT astrocytes, but not in NBCe1‐knockout astrocytes.Isocapnic acidosis, hypercapnic acidosis and isohydric hypocapnia evoked inward currents in NBCe1‐ and CAII‐expressing Xenopus laevis oocytes, but not in native oocytes, suggesting that NBCe1 operates in the outwardly directed mode under these conditions consistent with our findings in astrocytes.We propose that bicarbonate sensing of astrocytes may have functional significance during extracellular acid/base disturbances in the brain, as it not only alters intracellular pH/[HCO3 −]‐dependent functions of astrocytes, but also modulates the extracellular pH/[HCO3 −] in brain tissue. Abstract Extracellular acid/base status of the mammalian brain undergoes dynamic changes during many physiological and pathological events. Although intracellular pH (pHi) of astrocytes responds to extracellular acid/base changes, the mechanisms mediating these changes have remained unresolved. We have previously shown that the electrogenic sodium–bicarbonate cotransporter, NBCe1, is a high‐affinity bicarbonate carrier in cortical astrocytes. In the present study, we investigated whether NBCe1 plays a role in bicarbonate sensing in astrocytes, and in determining the pHi responses to extracellular acid/base challenges. We measured changes in intracellular H+ and Na+ in

  14. 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.

  15. HIV and drug abuse mediate astrocyte senescence in a β-catenin-dependent manner leading to neuronal toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Chunjiang; Narasipura, Srinivas D; Richards, Maureen H; Hu, Xiu-Ti; Yamamoto, Bryan; Al-Harthi, Lena

    2017-10-01

    Emerging evidence suggests that cell senescence plays an important role in aging-associated diseases including neurodegenerative diseases. HIV leads to a spectrum of neurologic diseases collectively termed HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). Drug abuse, particularly methamphetamine (meth), is a frequently abused psychostimulant among HIV+ individuals and its abuse exacerbates HAND. The mechanism by which HIV and meth lead to brain cell dysregulation is not entirely clear. In this study, we evaluated the impact of HIV and meth on astrocyte senescence using in vitro and several animal models. Astrocytes constitute up to 50% of brain cells and play a pivotal role in marinating brain homeostasis. We show here that HIV and meth induce significant senescence of primary human fetal astrocytes, as evaluated by induction of senescence markers (β-galactosidase and p16 INK 4A ), senescence-associated morphologic changes, and cell cycle arrest. HIV- and meth-mediated astrocyte senescence was also demonstrated in three small animal models (humanized mouse model of HIV/NSG-huPBMCs, HIV-transgenic rats, and in a meth administration rat model). Senescent astrocytes in turn mediated neuronal toxicity. Further, we show that β-catenin, a pro-survival/proliferation transcriptional co-activator, is downregulated by HIV and meth in human astrocytes and this downregulation promotes astrocyte senescence while induction of β-catenin blocks HIV- and meth-mediated astrocyte senescence. These studies, for the first time, demonstrate that HIV and meth induce astrocyte senescence and implicate the β-catenin pathway as potential therapeutic target to overcome astrocyte senescence. © 2017 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Zinc is released by cultured astrocytes as a gliotransmitter under hypoosmotic stress-loaded conditions and regulates microglial activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segawa, Shohei; Nishiura, Takeshi; Furuta, Takahiro; Ohsato, Yuki; Tani, Misaki; Nishida, Kentaro; Nagasawa, Kazuki

    2014-01-17

    Astrocytes contribute to the maintenance of brain homeostasis via the release of gliotransmitters such as ATP and glutamate. Here we examined whether zinc was released from astrocytes under stress-loaded conditions, and was involved in the regulation of microglial activity as a gliotransmitter. Hypoosmotic stress was loaded to astrocytes using balanced salt solution prepared to 214-314 mOsmol/L, and then intra- and extra-cellular zinc levels were assessed using Newport Green DCF diacetate (NG) and ICP-MS, respectively. Microglial activation by the astrocytic supernatant was assessed by their morphological changes and poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR) polymer accumulation. Exposure of astrocytes to hypoosmotic buffer, increased the extracellular ATP level in osmolarity-dependent manners, indicating a load of hypoosmotic stress. In hypoosmotic stress-loaded astrocytes, there were apparent increases in the intra- and extra-cellular zinc levels. Incubation of microglia in the astrocytic conditioned medium transformed them into the activated "amoeboid" form and induced PAR formation. Administration of an extracellular zinc chelator, CaEDTA, to the astrocytic conditioned medium almost completely prevented the microglial activation. Treatment of astrocytes with an intracellular zinc chelator, TPEN, suppressed the hypoosmotic stress-increased intracellular, but not the extracellular, zinc level, and the increase in the intracellular zinc level was blocked partially by a nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, but not by CaEDTA, indicating that the mechanisms underlying the increases in the intra- and extra-cellular zinc levels might be different. These findings suggest that under hypoosmotic stress-loaded conditions, zinc is released from astrocytes and then plays a primary role in microglial activation as a gliotransmitter. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Cord Blood and Transplants

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... donate their baby’s umbilical cord blood to a public cord blood bank. We have more than 249,000 cord blood ... stored as a cord blood unit at a public cord blood bank for future use. It can then be listed ...

  18. Protective effect of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) against spinal cord ischemia-reperfusion injury via reducing oxidative stress-induced neuronal apoptosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Lei; Wang, Zhenfei; Li, Changwei; Yang, Kai; Liang, Yu

    2017-02-01

    As previous studies demonstrate that oxidative stress and apoptosis play crucial roles in ischemic pathogenesis and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD + ) treatment attenuates oxidative stress-induced cell death among primary neurons and astrocytes as well as significantly reduce cerebral ischemic injury in rats. We used a spinal cord ischemia injury (SCII) model in rats to verify our hypothesis that NAD + could ameliorate oxidative stress-induced neuronal apoptosis. Adult male rats were subjected to transient spinal cord ischemia for 60min, and different doses of NAD + were administered intraperitoneally immediately after the start of reperfusion. Neurological function was determined by Basso, Beattie, Bresnahan (BBB) scores. The oxidative stress level was assessed by superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and malondialdehyde (MDA) content. The degree of apoptosis was analyzed by deoxyuridinetriphosphate nick-end labeling (TUNEL) staining and protein levels of cleaved caspase-3 and AIF (apoptosis inducing factor). The results showed that NAD + at 50 or 100mg/kg significantly decreased the oxidative stress level and neuronal apoptosis in the spinal cord of ischemia-reperfusion rats compared with saline, as accompanied with the decreased oxidative stress, NAD + administration significantly restrained the neuronal apoptosis after ischemia injury while improved the neurological and motor function. These findings suggested that NAD + might protect against spinal cord ischemia-reperfusion via reducing oxidative stress-induced neuronal apoptosis. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Prolonged Minocycline Treatment Impairs Motor Neuronal Survival and Glial Function in Organotypic Rat Spinal Cord Cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinkernelle, Josephine; Fansa, Hisham; Ebmeyer, Uwe; Keilhoff, Gerburg

    2013-01-01

    Background Minocycline, a second-generation tetracycline antibiotic, exhibits anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects in various experimental models of neurological diseases, such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal cord injury. However, conflicting results have prompted a debate regarding the beneficial effects of minocycline. Methods In this study, we analyzed minocycline treatment in organotypic spinal cord cultures of neonatal rats as a model of motor neuron survival and regeneration after injury. Minocycline was administered in 2 different concentrations (10 and 100 µM) at various time points in culture and fixed after 1 week. Results Prolonged minocycline administration decreased the survival of motor neurons in the organotypic cultures. This effect was strongly enhanced with higher concentrations of minocycline. High concentrations of minocycline reduced the number of DAPI-positive cell nuclei in organotypic cultures and simultaneously inhibited microglial activation. Astrocytes, which covered the surface of the control organotypic cultures, revealed a peripheral distribution after early minocycline treatment. Thus, we further analyzed the effects of 100 µM minocycline on the viability and migration ability of dispersed primary glial cell cultures. We found that minocycline reduced cell viability, delayed wound closure in a scratch migration assay and increased connexin 43 protein levels in these cultures. Conclusions The administration of high doses of minocycline was deleterious for motor neuron survival. In addition, it inhibited microglial activation and impaired glial viability and migration. These data suggest that especially high doses of minocycline might have undesired affects in treatment of spinal cord injury. Further experiments are required to determine the conditions for the safe clinical administration of minocycline in spinal cord injured patients. PMID:23967343

  4. The metabolic role of isoleucine in detoxification of ammonia in cultured mouse neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, Maja L; Bak, Lasse K; Schousboe, Arne; Iversen, Peter; Sørensen, Michael; Keiding, Susanne; Vilstrup, Hendrik; Gjedde, Albert; Ott, Peter; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2007-06-01

    Cerebral hyperammonemia is a hallmark of hepatic encephalopathy, a debilitating condition arising secondary to liver disease. Pyruvate oxidation including tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle metabolism has been suggested to be inhibited by hyperammonemia at the pyruvate and alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase steps. Catabolism of the branched-chain amino acid isoleucine provides both acetyl-CoA and succinyl-CoA, thus by-passing both the pyruvate dehydrogenase and the alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase steps. Potentially, this will enable the TCA cycle to work in the face of ammonium-induced inhibition. In addition, this will provide the alpha-ketoglutarate carbon skeleton for glutamate and glutamine synthesis by glutamate dehydrogenase and glutamine synthetase (astrocytes only), respectively, both reactions fixing ammonium. Cultured cerebellar neurons (primarily glutamatergic) or astrocytes were incubated in the presence of either [U-13C]glucose (2.5 mM) and isoleucine (1 mM) or [U-13C]isoleucine and glucose. Cell cultures were treated with an acute ammonium chloride load of 2 (astrocytes) or 5 mM (neurons and astrocytes) and incorporation of 13C-label into glutamate, aspartate, glutamine and alanine was determined employing mass spectrometry. Labeling from [U-13C]glucose in glutamate and aspartate increased as a result of ammonium-treatment in both neurons and astrocytes, suggesting that the TCA cycle was not inhibited. Labeling in alanine increased in neurons but not in astrocytes, indicating elevated glycolysis in neurons. For both neurons and astrocytes, labeling from [U-13C]isoleucine entered glutamate and aspartate albeit to a lower extent than from [U-13C]glucose. Labeling in glutamate and aspartate from [U-13C]isoleucine was decreased by ammonium treatment in neurons but not in astrocytes, the former probably reflecting increased metabolism of unlabeled glucose. In astrocytes, ammonia treatment resulted in glutamine production and release to the medium, partially

  5. Evidence for aberrant astrocyte hemichannel activity in Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (JNCL).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burkovetskaya, Maria; Karpuk, Nikolay; Xiong, Juan; Bosch, Megan; Boska, Michael D; Takeuchi, Hideyuki; Suzumura, Akio; Kielian, Tammy

    2014-01-01

    Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (JNCL) is a lysosomal storage disease caused by an autosomal recessive mutation in CLN3 that leads to vision loss, progressive cognitive and motor decline, and premature death. Morphological evidence of astrocyte activation occurs early in the disease process and coincides with regions where neuronal loss eventually ensues. However, the consequences of CLN3 mutation on astrocyte function remain relatively ill-defined. Astrocytes play a critical role in CNS homeostasis, in part, by their ability to regulate the extracellular milieu via the formation of extensive syncytial networks coupled by gap junction (GJ) channels. In contrast, unopposed hemichannels (HCs) have been implicated in CNS pathology by allowing the non-discriminant passage of molecules between the intracellular and extracellular milieus. Here we examined acute brain slices from CLN3 mutant mice (CLN3Δex7/8) to determine whether CLN3 loss alters the balance of GJ and HC activity. CLN3Δex7/8 mice displayed transient increases in astrocyte HC opening at postnatal day 30 in numerous brain regions, compared to wild type (WT) animals; however, HC activity steadily decreased at postnatal days 60 and 90 in CLN3Δex7/8 astrocytes to reach levels lower than WT cells. This suggested a progressive decline in astrocyte function, which was supported by significant reductions in glutamine synthetase, GLAST, and connexin expression in CLN3Δex7/8 mice compared to WT animals. Based on the early increase in astrocyte HC activity, CLN3Δex7/8 mice were treated with the novel carbenoxolone derivative INI-0602 to inhibit HCs. Administration of INI-0602 for a one month period significantly reduced lysosomal ceroid inclusions in the brains of CLN3Δex7/8 mice compared to WT animals, which coincided with significant increases in astrocyte GJ communication and normalization of astrocyte resting membrane potential to WT levels. Collectively, these findings suggest that alterations in

  6. Evidence for aberrant astrocyte hemichannel activity in Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (JNCL.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Burkovetskaya

    Full Text Available Juvenile Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (JNCL is a lysosomal storage disease caused by an autosomal recessive mutation in CLN3 that leads to vision loss, progressive cognitive and motor decline, and premature death. Morphological evidence of astrocyte activation occurs early in the disease process and coincides with regions where neuronal loss eventually ensues. However, the consequences of CLN3 mutation on astrocyte function remain relatively ill-defined. Astrocytes play a critical role in CNS homeostasis, in part, by their ability to regulate the extracellular milieu via the formation of extensive syncytial networks coupled by gap junction (GJ channels. In contrast, unopposed hemichannels (HCs have been implicated in CNS pathology by allowing the non-discriminant passage of molecules between the intracellular and extracellular milieus. Here we examined acute brain slices from CLN3 mutant mice (CLN3Δex7/8 to determine whether CLN3 loss alters the balance of GJ and HC activity. CLN3Δex7/8 mice displayed transient increases in astrocyte HC opening at postnatal day 30 in numerous brain regions, compared to wild type (WT animals; however, HC activity steadily decreased at postnatal days 60 and 90 in CLN3Δex7/8 astrocytes to reach levels lower than WT cells. This suggested a progressive decline in astrocyte function, which was supported by significant reductions in glutamine synthetase, GLAST, and connexin expression in CLN3Δex7/8 mice compared to WT animals. Based on the early increase in astrocyte HC activity, CLN3Δex7/8 mice were treated with the novel carbenoxolone derivative INI-0602 to inhibit HCs. Administration of INI-0602 for a one month period significantly reduced lysosomal ceroid inclusions in the brains of CLN3Δex7/8 mice compared to WT animals, which coincided with significant increases in astrocyte GJ communication and normalization of astrocyte resting membrane potential to WT levels. Collectively, these findings suggest that

  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. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Manipulation of Schwann cell migration across the astrocyte boundary by polysialyltransferase-loaded superparamagnetic nanoparticles under magnetic field

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xia B

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bing Xia,* Liangliang Huang,* Lei Zhu, Zhongyang Liu, Teng Ma, Shu Zhu, Jinghui Huang, Zhuojing Luo Department of Orthopaedics, Xijing Hospital, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi’an, Shaanxi, People’s Republic of China *These authors contributed equally to this work Abstract: Schwann cell (SC transplantation is an attractive strategy for spinal cord injury (SCI. However, the efficacy of SC transplantation has been limited by the poor migratory ability of SCs in the astrocyte-rich central nervous system (CNS environment and the inability to intermingle with the host astrocyte. In this study, we first magnetofected SCs by polysialyltransferase-functionalized superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (PST/SPIONs to induce overexpression of polysialylation of neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM to enhance SC migration ability, before manipulating the direction of SC migration with the assistance of an applied magnetic field (MF. It was found that magnetofection with PST/SPIONs significantly upregulated the expression of PSA-NCAM in SCs, which significantly enhanced the migration ability of SCs, but without preferential direction in the absence of MF. The number and averaged maximum distance of SCs with PST/SPIONs migrating into the astrocyte domain were significantly enhanced by an applied MF. In a 300 µm row along the astrocyte boundary, the number of SCs with PST/SPIONs migrating into the astrocyte domain under an MF was 2.95 and 6.71 times higher than that in the absence of MF and the intact control SCs, respectively. More interestingly, a confrontation assay demonstrated that SCs with PST/SPIONs were in close contact with astrocytes and no longer formed boundaries in the presence of MF. In conclusion, SCs with PST/SPIONs showed enhanced preferential migration along the axis of a magnetic force, which might be beneficial for the formation of Büngner bands in the CNS. These findings raise the possibilities of enhancing the

  11. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... spinal cord injury? play_arrow What kind of surgery is common after a spinal cord injury? play_ ... How soon after a spinal cord injury should surgery be performed? play_arrow Is it common to ...

  12. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... L Sarah Harrison, OT Anne Bryden, OT The Role of the Social Worker after Spinal Cord Injury ... a spinal cord injury important? play_arrow What role does “compression” play in a spinal cord injury? ...

  13. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Cord Injury Diane M. Rowles, MS, NP How Family Life Changes After Spinal Cord Injury Nancy Rosenberg, ... Children with Spinal Cord Injury Patricia Mucia, RN Family Life After Pediatric Spinal Injury Dawn Sheaffer, MSW ...

  14. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Counseling Blog About Media Donate Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expert Videos Topics menu Topics Spinal Cord Injury ... Jennifer Piatt, PhD David Chen, MD Read Bio Medical Director, Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Program, Rehabilitation Institute ...

  15. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Blog About Media Donate Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expert Videos Topics menu Topics Spinal Cord Injury 101 ... arrow What is the “Spinal Cord Injury Model Systems” program? play_arrow What are the most promising ...

  16. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Topic Resources Peer Counseling Blog About Media Donate Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expert Videos Topics menu Topics Spinal Cord Injury 101 Adult Injuries Spinal Cord Injury 101 David ...

  17. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Topic Resources Peer Counseling Blog About Media Donate Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expert Videos Topics menu Topics Spinal Cord Injury 101 Adult Injuries Spinal Cord Injury 101 ...

  18. Spinal Cord Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    Your spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that runs down the middle of your back. It carries signals back ... of the spine, this can also injure the spinal cord. Other spinal cord problems include Tumors Infections such ...

  19. Spinal cord contusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ju, Gong; Wang, Jian; Wang, Yazhou; Zhao, Xianghui

    2014-04-15

    Spinal cord injury is a major cause of disability with devastating neurological outcomes and limited therapeutic opportunities, even though there are thousands of publications on spinal cord injury annually. There are two major types of spinal cord injury, transaction of the spinal cord and spinal cord contusion. Both can theoretically be treated, but there is no well documented treatment in human being. As for spinal cord contusion, we have developed an operation with fabulous result.

  20. CNF1 improves astrocytic ability to support neuronal growth and differentiation in vitro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fiorella Malchiodi-Albedi

    Full Text Available Modulation of cerebral Rho GTPases activity in mice brain by intracerebral administration of Cytotoxic Necrotizing Factor 1 (CNF1 leads to enhanced neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity and improves learning and memory. To gain more insight into the interactions between CNF1 and neuronal cells, we used primary neuronal and astrocytic cultures from rat embryonic brain to study CNF1 effects on neuronal differentiation, focusing on dendritic tree growth and synapse formation, which are strictly modulated by Rho GTPases. CNF1 profoundly remodeled the cytoskeleton of hippocampal and cortical neurons, which showed philopodia-like, actin-positive projections, thickened and poorly branched dendrites, and a decrease in synapse number. CNF1 removal, however, restored dendritic tree development and synapse formation, suggesting that the toxin can reversibly block neuronal differentiation. On differentiated neurons, CNF1 had a similar effacing effect on synapses. Therefore, a direct interaction with CNF1 is apparently deleterious for neurons. Since astrocytes play a pivotal role in neuronal differentiation and synaptic regulation, we wondered if the beneficial in vivo effect could be mediated by astrocytes. Primary astrocytes from embryonic cortex were treated with CNF1 for 48 hours and used as a substrate for growing hippocampal neurons. Such neurons showed an increased development of neurites, in respect to age-matched controls, with a wider dendritic tree and a richer content in synapses. In CNF1-exposed astrocytes, the production of interleukin 1β, known to reduce dendrite development and complexity in neuronal cultures, was decreased. These results demonstrate that astrocytes, under the influence of CNF1, increase their supporting activity on neuronal growth and differentiation, possibly related to the diminished levels of interleukin 1β. These observations suggest that the enhanced synaptic plasticity and improved learning and memory described

  1. CNF1 Improves Astrocytic Ability to Support Neuronal Growth and Differentiation In vitro

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malchiodi-Albedi, Fiorella; Paradisi, Silvia; Di Nottia, Michela; Simone, Daiana; Travaglione, Sara; Falzano, Loredana; Guidotti, Marco; Frank, Claudio; Cutarelli, Alessandro; Fabbri, Alessia; Fiorentini, Carla

    2012-01-01

    Modulation of cerebral Rho GTPases activity in mice brain by intracerebral administration of Cytotoxic Necrotizing Factor 1 (CNF1) leads to enhanced neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity and improves learning and memory. To gain more insight into the interactions between CNF1 and neuronal cells, we used primary neuronal and astrocytic cultures from rat embryonic brain to study CNF1 effects on neuronal differentiation, focusing on dendritic tree growth and synapse formation, which are strictly modulated by Rho GTPases. CNF1 profoundly remodeled the cytoskeleton of hippocampal and cortical neurons, which showed philopodia-like, actin-positive projections, thickened and poorly branched dendrites, and a decrease in synapse number. CNF1 removal, however, restored dendritic tree development and synapse formation, suggesting that the toxin can reversibly block neuronal differentiation. On differentiated neurons, CNF1 had a similar effacing effect on synapses. Therefore, a direct interaction with CNF1 is apparently deleterious for neurons. Since astrocytes play a pivotal role in neuronal differentiation and synaptic regulation, we wondered if the beneficial in vivo effect could be mediated by astrocytes. Primary astrocytes from embryonic cortex were treated with CNF1 for 48 hours and used as a substrate for growing hippocampal neurons. Such neurons showed an increased development of neurites, in respect to age-matched controls, with a wider dendritic tree and a richer content in synapses. In CNF1-exposed astrocytes, the production of interleukin 1β, known to reduce dendrite development and complexity in neuronal cultures, was decreased. These results demonstrate that astrocytes, under the influence of CNF1, increase their supporting activity on neuronal growth and differentiation, possibly related to the diminished levels of interleukin 1β. These observations suggest that the enhanced synaptic plasticity and improved learning and memory described in CNF1-injected

  2. 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.

  3. Glial TNFα in the spinal cord regulates neuropathic pain induced by HIV gp120 application in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ouyang Handong

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background HIV-associated sensory neuropathy (HIV-SN is one of the most common forms of peripheral neuropathy, affecting about 30% of people with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS. The symptoms of HIV-SN are dominated by neuropathic pain. Glia activation in the spinal cord has become an attractive target for attenuating chronic pain. This study will investigate the role of spinal TNFα released from glia in HIV-related neuropathic pain. Results Peripheral gp120 application into the rat sciatic nerve induced mechanical allodynia for more than 7 weeks, and upregulated the expression of spinal TNFα in the mRNA and the protein levels at 2 weeks after gp120 application. Spinal TNFα was colocalized with GFAP (a marker of astrocytes and Iba1 (a marker of microglia in immunostaining, suggesting that glia produce TNFα in the spinal cord in this model. Peripheral gp120 application also increased TNFα in the L4/5 DRG. Furthermore, intrathecal administration of TNFα siRNA or soluble TNF receptor reduced gp120 application-induced mechanical allodynia. Conclusions Our results indicate that TNFα in the spinal cord and the DRG are involved in neuropathic pain, following the peripheral HIV gp120 application, and that blockade of the glial product TNFα reverses neuropathic pain induced by HIV gp120 application.

  4. α7 Nicotinic receptor-mediated astrocytic gliotransmitter release: Aβ effects in a preclinical Alzheimer's mouse model.

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    Tiina Maria Pirttimaki

    Full Text Available It is now recognized that astrocytes participate in synaptic communication through intimate interactions with neurons. A principal mechanism is through the release of gliotransmitters (GTs such as ATP, D-serine and most notably, glutamate, in response to astrocytic calcium elevations. We and others have shown that amyloid-β (Aβ, the toxic trigger for Alzheimer's disease (AD, interacts with hippocampal α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs. Since α7nAChRs are highly permeable to calcium and are expressed on hippocampal astrocytes, we investigated whether Aβ could activate astrocytic α7nAChRs in hippocampal slices and induce GT glutamate release. We found that biologically-relevant concentrations of Aβ1-42 elicited α7nAChR-dependent calcium elevations in hippocampal CA1 astrocytes and induced NMDAR-mediated slow inward currents (SICs in CA1 neurons. In the Tg2576 AD mouse model for Aβ over-production and accumulation, we found that spontaneous astrocytic calcium elevations were of higher frequency compared to wildtype (WT. The frequency and kinetic parameters of AD mice SICs indicated enhanced gliotransmission, possibly due to increased endogenous Aβ observed in this model. Activation of α7nAChRs on WT astrocytes increased spontaneous inward currents on pyramidal neurons while α7nAChRs on astrocytes of AD mice were abrogated. These findings suggest that, at an age that far precedes the emergence of cognitive deficits and plaque deposition, this mouse model for AD-like amyloidosis exhibits augmented astrocytic activity and glutamate GT release suggesting possible repercussions for preclinical AD hippocampal neural networks that contribute to subsequent cognitive decline.

  5. Gap junction intercellular communication mediated by connexin43 in astrocytes is essential for their resistance to oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Hoa T; Sin, Wun Chey; Lozinsky, Shannon; Bechberger, John; Vega, José Luis; Guo, Xu Qiu; Sáez, Juan C; Naus, Christian C

    2014-01-17

    Oxidative stress induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) is associated with various neurological disorders including aging, neurodegenerative diseases, as well as traumatic and ischemic insults. Astrocytes have an important role in the anti-oxidative defense in the brain. The gap junction protein connexin43 (Cx43) forms intercellular channels as well as hemichannels in astrocytes. In the present study, we investigated the contribution of Cx43 to astrocytic death induced by the ROS hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and the mechanism by which Cx43 exerts its effects. Lack of Cx43 expression or blockage of Cx43 channels resulted in increased ROS-induced astrocytic death, supporting a cell protective effect of functional Cx43 channels. H2O2 transiently increased hemichannel activity, but reduced gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC). GJIC in wild-type astrocytes recovered after 7 h, but was absent in Cx43 knock-out astrocytes. Blockage of Cx43 hemichannels incompletely inhibited H2O2-induced hemichannel activity, indicating the presence of other hemichannel proteins. Panx1, which is predicted to be a major hemichannel contributor in astrocytes, did not appear to have any cell protective effect from H2O2 insults. Our data suggest that GJIC is important for Cx43-mediated ROS resistance. In contrast to hypoxia/reoxygenation, H2O2 treatment decreased the ratio of the hypophosphorylated isoform to total Cx43 level. Cx43 has been reported to promote astrocytic death induced by hypoxia/reoxygenation. We therefore speculate the increase in Cx43 dephosphorylation may account for the facilitation of astrocytic death. Our findings suggest that the role of Cx43 in response to cellular stress is dependent on the activation of signaling pathways leading to alteration of Cx43 phosphorylation states.

  6. Therapeutic Effect of Platelet-Rich Plasma in Rat Spinal Cord Injuries

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    Nan-Fu Chen

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Platelet-rich plasma (PRP is prepared by centrifuging fresh blood in an anticoagulant state, and harvesting the platelet-rich portion or condensing platelets. Studies have consistently demonstrated that PRP concentrates are an abundant source of growth factors, such as platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF, transforming growth factor β (TGF-β, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1, and epithelial growth factor (EGF. The complex mechanisms underlying spinal cord injury (SCI diminish intrinsic repair and neuronal regeneration. Several studies have suggested that growth factor-promoted axonal regeneration can occur for an extended period after injury. More importantly, the delivery of exogenous growth factors contained in PRP, such as EGF, IGF-1, and TGF-β, has neurotrophic effects on central nervous system (CNS injuries and neurodegenerative diseases. However, only a few studies have investigated the effects of PRP on CNS injuries or neurodegenerative diseases. According to our review of relevant literature, no study has investigated the effect of intrathecal (i.t. PRP injection into the injured spinal cord and activation of intrinsic mechanisms. In the present study, we directly injected i.t. PRP into rat spinal cords and examined the effects of PRP on normal and injured spinal cords. In rats with normal spinal cords, PRP induced microglia and astrocyte activation and PDGF-B and ICAM-1 expression. In rats with SCIs, i.t. PRP enhanced the locomotor recovery and spared white matter, promoted angiogenesis and neuronal regeneration, and modulated blood vessel size. Furthermore, a sustained treatment (a bolus of PRP followed by a 1/3 dose of initial PRP concentration exerted more favorable therapeutic effects than a single dose of PRP. Our findings suggest by i.t. PRP stimulate angiogenesis, enhancing neuronal regeneration after SCI in rats. Although PRP induces minor inflammation in normal and injured spinal cords, it has many advantages. It is an

  7. Cellular Origin of [18F]FDG-PET Imaging Signals During Ceftriaxone-Stimulated Glutamate Uptake: Astrocytes and Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Behar, Kevin L; Rothman, Douglas L

    2017-12-01

    Ceftriaxone stimulates astrocytic uptake of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate, and it is used to treat glutamatergic excitotoxicity that becomes manifest during many brain diseases. Ceftriaxone-stimulated glutamate transport was reported to drive signals underlying [ 18 F]fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomographic ([ 18 F]FDG-PET) metabolic images of brain glucose utilization and interpreted as supportive of the notion of lactate shuttling from astrocytes to neurons. This study draws attention to critical roles of astrocytes in the energetics and imaging of brain activity, but the results are provocative because (1) the method does not have cellular resolution or provide information about downstream pathways of glucose metabolism, (2) neuronal and astrocytic [ 18 F]FDG uptake were not separately measured, and (3) strong evidence against lactate shuttling was not discussed. Evaluation of potential metabolic responses to ceftriaxone suggests lack of astrocytic specificity and significant contributions by pre- and postsynaptic neuronal compartments. Indeed, astrocytic glycolysis may not make a strong contribution to the [ 18 F]FDG-PET signal because partial or complete oxidation of one glutamate molecule on its uptake generates enough ATP to fuel uptake of 3 to 10 more glutamate molecules, diminishing reliance on glycolysis. The influence of ceftriaxone on energetics of glutamate-glutamine cycling must be determined in astrocytes and neurons to elucidate its roles in excitotoxicity treatment.

  8. Bidirectional coupling between astrocytes and neurons mediates learning and dynamic coordination in the brain: a multiple modeling approach.

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    John J Wade

    Full Text Available In recent years research suggests that astrocyte networks, in addition to nutrient and waste processing functions, regulate both structural and synaptic plasticity. To understand the biological mechanisms that underpin such plasticity requires the development of cell level models that capture the mutual interaction between astrocytes and neurons. This paper presents a detailed model of bidirectional signaling between astrocytes and neurons (the astrocyte-neuron model or AN model which yields new insights into the computational role of astrocyte-neuronal coupling. From a set of modeling studies we demonstrate two significant findings. Firstly, that spatial signaling via astrocytes can relay a "learning signal" to remote synaptic sites. Results show that slow inward currents cause synchronized postsynaptic activity in remote neurons and subsequently allow Spike-Timing-Dependent Plasticity based learning to occur at the associated synapses. Secondly, that bidirectional communication between neurons and astrocytes underpins dynamic coordination between neuron clusters. Although our composite AN model is presently applied to simplified neural structures and limited to coordination between localized neurons, the principle (which embodies structural, functional and dynamic complexity, and the modeling strategy may be extended to coordination among remote neuron clusters.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  10. Gene expression and functional studies of the optic nerve head astrocyte transcriptome from normal African Americans and Caucasian Americans donors.

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    Haixi Miao

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available To determine whether optic nerve head (ONH astrocytes, a key cellular component of glaucomatous neuropathy, exhibit differential gene expression in primary cultures of astrocytes from normal African American (AA donors compared to astrocytes from normal Caucasian American (CA donors.We used oligonucleotide Affymetrix microarray (HG U133A & HG U133A 2.0 chips to compare gene expression levels in cultured ONH astrocytes from twelve CA and twelve AA normal age matched donor eyes. Chips were normalized with Robust Microarray Analysis (RMA in R using Bioconductor. Significant differential gene expression levels were detected using mixed effects modeling and Statistical Analysis of Microarray (SAM. Functional analysis and Gene Ontology were used to classify differentially expressed genes. Differential gene expression was validated by quantitative real time RT-PCR. Protein levels were detected by Western blots and ELISA. Cell adhesion and migration assays tested physiological responses. Glutathione (GSH assay detected levels of intracellular GSH.Multiple analyses selected 87 genes differentially expressed between normal AA and CA (P<0.01. The most relevant genes expressed in AA were categorized by function, including: signal transduction, response to stress, ECM genes, migration and cell adhesion.These data show that normal astrocytes from AA and CA normal donors display distinct expression profiles that impact astrocyte functions in the ONH. Our data suggests that differences in gene expression in ONH astrocytes may be specific to the development and/or progression of glaucoma in AA.

  11. Human neural stem cells differentiate and promote locomotor recovery in an early chronic spinal cord injury NOD-scid mouse model.

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    Desirée L Salazar

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI results in partial or complete paralysis and is characterized by a loss of neurons and oligodendrocytes, axonal injury, and demyelination/dysmyelination of spared axons. Approximately 1,250,000 individuals have chronic SCI in the U.S.; therefore treatment in the chronic stages is highly clinically relevant. Human neural stem cells (hCNS-SCns were prospectively isolated based on fluorescence-activated cell sorting for a CD133(+ and CD24(-/lo population from fetal brain, grown as neurospheres, and lineage restricted to generate neurons, oligodendrocytes and astrocytes. hCNS-SCns have recently been transplanted sub-acutely following spinal cord injury and found to promote improved locomotor recovery. We tested the ability of hCNS-SCns transplanted 30 days post SCI to survive, differentiate, migrate, and promote improved locomotor recovery.hCNS-SCns were transplanted into immunodeficient NOD-scid mice 30 days post spinal cord contusion injury. hCNS-SCns transplanted mice demonstrated significantly improved locomotor recovery compared to vehicle controls using open field locomotor testing and CatWalk gait analysis. Transplanted hCNS-SCns exhibited long-term engraftment, migration, limited proliferation, and differentiation predominantly to oligodendrocytes and neurons. Astrocytic differentiation was rare and mice did not exhibit mechanical allodynia. Furthermore, differentiated hCNS-SCns integrated with the host as demonstrated by co-localization of human cytoplasm with discrete staining for the paranodal marker contactin-associated protein.The results suggest that hCNS-SCns are capable of surviving, differentiating, and promoting improved locomotor recovery when transplanted into an early chronic injury microenvironment. These data suggest that hCNS-SCns transplantation has efficacy in an early chronic SCI setting and thus expands the "window of opportunity" for intervention.

  12. 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

  13. Astrocytes and endoplasmic reticulum stress: A bridge between obesity and neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Jiménez, Cynthia A; García-Vega, Ángela; Cabezas, Ricardo; Aliev, Gjumrakch; Echeverria, Valentina; González, Janneth; Barreto, George E

    2017-11-01

    Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a subcellular organelle involved in protein folding and processing. ER stress constitutes a cellular process characterized by accumulation of misfolded proteins, impaired lipid metabolism and induction of inflammatory responses. ER stress has been suggested to be involved in several human pathologies, including neurodegenerative diseases and obesity. Different studies have shown that both neurodegenerative diseases and obesity trigger similar cellular responses to ER stress. Moreover, both diseases are assessed in astrocytes as evidences suggest these cells as key regulators of brain homeostasis. However, the exact contributions to the effects of ER stress in astrocytes in the various neurodegenerative diseases and its relation with obesity are not well known. Here, we discuss recent advances in the understanding of molecular mechanisms that regulate ER stress-related disorders in astrocytes such as obesity and neurodegeneration. Moreover, we outline the correlation between the activated proteins of the unfolded protein response (UPR) in these pathological conditions in order to identify possible therapeutic targets for ER stress in astrocytes. We show that ER stress in astrocytes shares UPR activation pathways during both obesity and neurodegenerative diseases, demonstrating that UPR related proteins like ER chaperone GRP 78/Bip, PERK pathway and other exogenous molecules ameliorate UPR response and promote neuroprotection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. CCL2 binding is CCR2 independent in primary adult human astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fouillet, A; Mawson, J; Suliman, O; Sharrack, B; Romero, I A; Woodroofe, M N

    2012-02-09

    Chemokines are low relative molecular mass proteins, which have chemoattractant actions on many cell types. The chemokine, CCL2, has been shown to play a major role in the recruitment of monocytes in central nervous system (CNS) lesions in multiple sclerosis (MS). Since resident astrocytes constitute a major source of chemokine synthesis including CCL2, we were interested to assess the regulation of CCL2 by astrocytes. We showed that CCL2 bound to the cell surface of astrocytes and binding was not modulated by inflammatory conditions. However, CCR2 protein was not detected nor was activation of the classical CCR2 downstream signaling pathways. Recent studies have shown that non-signaling decoy chemokine receptors bind and modulate the expression of chemokines at site of inflammation. Here, we show that the D6 chemokine decoy receptor is constitutively expressed by primary human adult astrocytes at both mRNA and protein level. In addition, CCL3, which binds to D6, but not CCL19, which does not bind to D6, displaced CCL2 binding to astrocytes; indicating that CCL2 may bind to this cell type via the D6 receptor. Our results suggest that CCL2 binding to primary adult human astrocytes is CCR2-independent and is likely to be mediated via the D6 decoy chemokine receptor. Therefore we propose that astrocytes are implicated in both the establishment of chemokine gradients for the migration of leukocytes into and within the CNS and in the regulation of CCL2 levels at inflammatory sites in the CNS. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Astrocyte oxidative metabolism and metabolite trafficking after fluid percussion brain injury in adult rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartnik-Olson, Brenda L; Oyoyo, Udochukwu; Hovda, David A; Sutton, Richard L

    2010-12-01

    Despite various lines of evidence pointing to the compartmentation of metabolism within the brain, few studies have reported the effect of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) on neuronal and astrocyte compartments and/or metabolic trafficking between these cells. In this study we used ex vivo ¹³C NMR spectroscopy following an infusion of [1-¹³C] glucose and [1,2-¹³C₂] acetate to study oxidative metabolism in neurons and astrocytes of sham-operated and fluid percussion brain injured (FPI) rats at 1, 5, and 14 days post-surgery. FPI resulted in a decrease in the ¹³C glucose enrichment of glutamate in neurons in the injured hemisphere at day 1. In contrast, enrichment of glutamine in astrocytes from acetate was not significantly decreased at day 1. At day 5 the ¹³C enrichment of glutamate and glutamine from glucose in the injured hemisphere of FPI rats did not differ from sham levels, but glutamine derived from acetate metabolism in astrocytes was significantly increased. The ¹³C glucose enrichment of the C3 position of glutamate (C3) in neurons was significantly decreased ipsilateral to FPI at day 14, whereas the enrichment of glutamine in astrocytes had returned to sham levels at this time point. These findings indicate that the oxidative metabolism of glucose is reduced to a greater extent in neurons compared to astrocytes following a FPI. The increased utilization of acetate to synthesize glutamine, and the acetate enrichment of glutamate via the glutamate-glutamine cycle, suggests an integral protective role for astrocytes in maintaining metabolic function following TBI-induced impairments in glucose metabolism.

  16. Age, environment, object recognition and morphological diversity of GFAP-immunolabeled astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diniz, Daniel Guerreiro; de Oliveira, Marcus Augusto; de Lima, Camila Mendes; Fôro, César Augusto Raiol; Sosthenes, Marcia Consentino Kronka; Bento-Torres, João; da Costa Vasconcelos, Pedro Fernando; Anthony, Daniel Clive; Diniz, Cristovam Wanderley Picanço

    2016-10-10

    Few studies have explored the glial response to a standard environment and how the response may be associated with age-related cognitive decline in learning and memory. Here we investigated aging and environmental influences on hippocampal-dependent tasks and on the morphology of an unbiased selected population of astrocytes from the molecular layer of dentate gyrus, which is the main target of perforant pathway. Six and twenty-month-old female, albino Swiss mice were housed, from weaning, in a standard or enriched environment, including running wheels for exercise and tested for object recognition and contextual memories. Young adult and aged subjects, independent of environment, were able to distinguish familiar from novel objects. All experimental groups, except aged mice from standard environment, distinguish stationary from displaced objects. Young adult but not aged mice, independent of environment, were able to distinguish older from recent objects. Only young mice from an enriched environment were able to distinguish novel from familiar contexts. Unbiased selected astrocytes from the molecular layer of the dentate gyrus were reconstructed in three-dimensions and classified using hierarchical cluster analysis of bimodal or multimodal morphological features. We found two morphological phenotypes of astrocytes and we designated type I the astrocytes that exhibited significantly higher values of morphological complexity as compared with type II. Complexity = [Sum of the terminal orders + Number of terminals] × [Total branch length/Number of primary branches]. On average, type I morphological complexity seems to be much more sensitive to age and environmental influences than that of type II. Indeed, aging and environmental impoverishment interact and reduce the morphological complexity of type I astrocytes at a point that they could not be distinguished anymore from type II. We suggest these two types of astrocytes may have different physiological roles

  17. Astrocytes sustain long-term productive HIV-1 infection without establishment of reactivable viral latency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barat, Corinne; Proust, Alizé; Deshiere, Alexandre; Leboeuf, Mathieu; Drouin, Jean; Tremblay, Michel J

    2018-02-21

    The "shock and kill" HIV-1 cure strategy proposes eradication of stable cellular reservoirs by clinical treatment with latency-reversing agents (LRAs). Although resting CD4 + T cells latently infected with HIV-1 constitute the main reservoir that is targeted by these approaches, their consequences on other reservoirs such as the central nervous system are still unknown and should be taken into consideration. We performed experiments aimed at defining the possible role of astrocytes in HIV-1 persistence in the brain and the effect of LRA treatments on this viral sanctuary. We first demonstrate that the diminished HIV-1 production in a proliferating astrocyte culture is due to a reduced proliferative capacity of virus-infected cells compared with uninfected astrocytes. In contrast, infection of non-proliferating astrocytes led to a robust HIV-1 infection that was sustained for over 60 days. To identify astrocytes latently infected with HIV-1, we designed a new dual-color reporter virus called NL4.3 eGFP-IRES-Crimson that is fully infectious and encodes for all viral proteins. Although we detected a small fraction of astrocytes carrying silent HIV-1 proviruses, we did not observe any reactivation using various LRAs and even strong inducers such as tumor necrosis factor, thus suggesting that these proviruses were either not transcriptionally competent or in a state of deep latency. Our findings imply that astrocytes might not constitute a latent reservoir per se but that relentless virus production by this brain cell population could contribute to the neurological disorders seen in HIV-1-infected persons subjected to combination antiretroviral therapy. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. CD44-positive cells are candidates for astrocyte precursor cells in developing mouse cerebellum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Na; Kurachi, Masashi; Shibasaki, Koji; Okano-Uchida, Takayuki; Ishizaki, Yasuki

    2012-03-01

    Neural stem cells are generally considered to be committed to becoming precursor cells before terminally differentiating into either neurons or glial cells during neural development. Neuronal and oligodendrocyte precursor cells have been identified in several areas in the murine central nervous system. The presence of astrocyte precursor cells (APCs) is not so well understood. The present study provides several lines of evidence that CD44-positive cells are APCs in the early postnatal mouse cerebellum. In developing mouse cerebellum, CD44-positive cells, mostly located in the white matter, were positive for the markers of the astrocyte lineage, but negative for the markers of mature astrocytes. CD44-positive cells were purified from postnatal cerebellum by fluorescence-activated cell sorting and characterized in vitro. In the absence of any signaling molecule, many cells died by apoptosis. The surviving cells gradually expressed glial fibrillary acidic protein, a marker for mature astrocytes, indicating that differentiation into mature astrocytes is the default program for these cells. The cells produced no neurospheres nor neurons nor oligodendrocytes under any condition examined, indicating these cells are not neural stem cells. Leukemia inhibitory factor greatly promoted astrocytic differentiation of CD44-positive cells, whereas bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) did not. Fibroblast growth factor-2 was a potent mitogen for these cells, but was insufficient for survival. BMP4 inhibited activation of caspase-3 and greatly promoted survival, suggesting a novel role for BMP4 in the control of development of astrocytes in cerebellum. We isolated and characterized only CD44 strongly positive large cells and discarded small and/or CD44 weakly positive cells in this study. Further studies are necessary to characterize these cells to help determine whether CD44 is a selective and specific marker for APCs in the developing mouse cerebellum. In conclusion, we succeeded in

  19. Astrocyte-neuron interaction in diphenyl ditelluride toxicity directed to the cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heimfarth, Luana; da Silva Ferreira, Fernanda; Pierozan, Paula; Mingori, Moara Rodrigues; Moreira, José Cláudio Fonseca; da Rocha, João Batista Teixeira; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2017-03-15

    Diphenylditelluride (PhTe) 2 is a neurotoxin that disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis. We are showing that different concentrations of (PhTe) 2 caused hypophosphorylation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), vimentin and neurofilament subunits (NFL, NFM and NFH) and altered actin organization in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons from cerebral cortex of rats. These mechanisms were mediated by N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors without participation of either L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels (L-VDCC) or metabotropic glutamate receptors. Upregulated Ca 2+ influx downstream of NMDA receptors activated Ca 2+ -dependent protein phosphatase 2B (PP2B) causing hypophosphorylation of astrocyte and neuron IFs. Immunocytochemistry showed that hypophosphorylated intermediate filaments (IF) failed to disrupt their organization into the cytoskeleton. However, phalloidin-actin-FITC stained cytoskeleton evidenced misregulation of actin distribution, cell spreading and increased stress fibers in astrocytes. βIII tubulin staining showed that neurite meshworks are not altered by (PhTe) 2 , suggesting greater susceptibility of astrocytes than neurons to (PheTe) 2 toxicity. These findings indicate that signals leading to IF hypophosphorylation fail to disrupt the cytoskeletal IF meshwork of interacting astrocytes and neurons in vitro however astrocyte actin network seems more susceptible. Our findings support that intracellular Ca 2+ is one of the crucial signals that modulate the action of (PhTe) 2 in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons and highlights the cytoskeleton as an end-point of the neurotoxicity of this compound. Cytoskeletal misregulation is associated with cell dysfunction, therefore, the understanding of the molecular mechanisms mediating the neurotoxicity of this compound is a matter of increasing interest since tellurium compounds are increasingly released in the environment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. International Spinal Cord Injury

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dvorak, M F; Itshayek, E; Fehlings, M G

    2015-01-01

    STUDY DESIGN: Survey of expert opinion, feedback and final consensus. OBJECTIVE: To describe the development and the variables included in the International Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Spinal Interventions and Surgical Procedures Basic Data set. SETTING: International working group. METHODS......: A committee of experts was established to select and define data elements. The data set was then disseminated to the appropriate committees and organizations for comments. All suggested revisions were considered and both the International Spinal Cord Society and the American Spinal Injury Association endorsed...... spinal intervention and procedure is coded (variables 1 through 7) and the spinal segment level is described (variables 8 and 9). Sample clinical cases were developed to illustrate how to complete it. CONCLUSION: The International SCI Spinal Interventions and Surgical Procedures Basic Data Set...

  1. 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

  2. Religious perspectives on umbilical cord blood banking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordens, Christopher F C; O'Connor, Michelle A C; Kerridge, Ian H; Stewart, Cameron; Cameron, Andrew; Keown, Damien; Lawrence, Rabbi Jeremy; McGarrity, Andrew; Sachedina, Abdulaziz; Tobin, Bernadette

    2012-03-01

    Umbilical cord blood is a valuable source of haematopoietic stem cells. There is little information about whether religious affiliations have any bearing on attitudes to and decisions about its collection, donation and storage. The authors provided information about umbilical cord blood banking to expert commentators from six major world religions (Catholicism, Anglicanism, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism) and asked them to address a specific set of questions in a commentary. The commentaries suggest there is considerable support for umbilical cord blood banking in these religions. Four commentaries provide moral grounds for favouring public donation over private storage. None attach any particular religious significance to the umbilical cord or to the blood within it, nor place restrictions on the ethnicity or religion of donors and recipients. Views on ownership of umbilical cord blood vary. The authors offer a series of general points for those who seek a better understanding of religious perspectives on umbilical cord blood banking.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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...

  7. 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

  8. S1P/S1PR3 signaling mediated proliferation of pericytes via Ras/pERK pathway and CAY10444 had beneficial effects on spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Hai-Bin; Jiang, Xiao-Jian; Wang, Chen; Liu, Shi-Chang

    2018-04-15

    Pericytes have long been regarded merely to maintain structural and functional integrity of blood-brain barrier (BBB). Nevertheless, it has also been identified as a component of scar-forming stromal cells after spinal cord injury (SCI). In process of enlargement of spinal cavity after SCI, the number of pericytes increased and outnumbered astrocytes. However, the mechanism of proliferation of pericytes remains unclear. Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) has been reported to play important roles in the formation of glia scar, but previous studies had paid more attention to the astrocytes. The present study aimed to observe the effects of S1P and S1P receptors (S1PRs) on proliferation of pericytes and investigate the underlying mechanism. By double immunostaining, we found that the number of PDGFRβ-positive pericytes was gradually increased and sealed the cavity, which surrounded by reactive astrocytes. Moreover, the subtype of S1PR3 was found to be induced by SCI and mainly expressed on pericytes. Further, by use of CAY10444, an inhibitor of S1PR3, we showed that S1P/S1PR3 mediated the proliferation of pericytes through Ras/pERK pathway. Moreover, CAY10444 was found to have the effects of enhancing neuronal survival, alleviating glial scar formation, and improving locomotion recovery after SCI. The results suggested that S1P/S1PR3 might be a promising target for clinical therapy for SCI. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Glucocorticoids inhibit glucose transport and glutamate uptake in hippocampal astrocytes: implications for glucocorticoid neurotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virgin, C E; Ha, T P; Packan, D R; Tombaugh, G C; Yang, S H; Horner, H C; Sapolsky, R M

    1991-10-01

    Glucocorticoids (GCs), the adrenal steroid hormones secreted during stress, can damage the hippocampus and impair its capacity to survive coincident neurological insults. This GC endangerment of the hippocampus is energetic in nature, as it can be prevented when neurons are supplemented with additional energy substrates. This energetic endangerment might arise from the ability of GCs to inhibit glucose transport into both hippocampal neurons and astrocytes. The present study explores the GC inhibition in astrocytes. (1) GCs inhibited glucose transport approximately 15-30% in both primary and secondary hippocampal astrocyte cultures. (2) The parameters of inhibition agreed with the mechanisms of GC inhibition of glucose transport in peripheral tissues: A minimum of 4 h of GC exposure were required, and the effect was steroid specific (i.e., it was not triggered by estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone) and tissue specific (i.e., it was not triggered by GCs in cerebellar or cortical cultures). (3) Similar GC treatment caused a decrease in astrocyte survival during hypoglycemia and a decrease in the affinity of glutamate uptake. This latter observation suggests that GCs might impair the ability of astrocytes to aid neurons during times of neurologic crisis (i.e., by impairing their ability to remove damaging glutamate from the synapse).

  10. 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.

  11. NH4+ triggers the release of astrocytic lactate via mitochondrial pyruvate shunting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerchundi, Rodrigo; Fernández-Moncada, Ignacio; Contreras-Baeza, Yasna; Sotelo-Hitschfeld, Tamara; Mächler, Philipp; Wyss, Matthias T.; Stobart, Jillian; Baeza-Lehnert, Felipe; Alegría, Karin; Weber, Bruno; Barros, L. Felipe

    2015-01-01

    Neural activity is accompanied by a transient mismatch between local glucose and oxygen metabolism, a phenomenon of physiological and pathophysiological importance termed aerobic glycolysis. Previous studies have proposed glutamate and K+ as the neuronal signals that trigger aerobic glycolysis in astrocytes. Here we used a panel of genetically encoded FRET sensors in vitro and in vivo to investigate the participation of NH4+, a by-product of catabolism that is also released by active neurons. Astrocytes in mixed cortical cultures responded to physiological levels of NH4+ with an acute rise in cytosolic lactate followed by lactate release into the extracellular space, as detected by a lactate-sniffer. An acute increase in astrocytic lactate was also observed in acute hippocampal slices exposed to NH4+ and in the somatosensory cortex of anesthetized mice in response to i.v. NH4+. Unexpectedly, NH4+ had no effect on astrocytic glucose consumption. Parallel measurements showed simultaneous cytosolic pyruvate accumulation and NADH depletion, suggesting the involvement of mitochondria. An inhibitor-stop technique confirmed a strong inhibition of mitochondrial pyruvate uptake that can be explained by mitochondrial matrix acidification. These results show that physiological NH4+ diverts the flux of pyruvate from mitochondria to lactate production and release. Considering that NH4+ is produced stoichiometrically with glutamate during excitatory neurotransmission, we propose that NH4+ behaves as an intercellular signal and that pyruvate shunting contributes to aerobic lactate production by astrocytes. PMID:26286989

  12. NH4(+) triggers the release of astrocytic lactate via mitochondrial pyruvate shunting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerchundi, Rodrigo; Fernández-Moncada, Ignacio; Contreras-Baeza, Yasna; Sotelo-Hitschfeld, Tamara; Mächler, Philipp; Wyss, Matthias T; Stobart, Jillian; Baeza-Lehnert, Felipe; Alegría, Karin; Weber, Bruno; Barros, L Felipe

    2015-09-01

    Neural activity is accompanied by a transient mismatch between local glucose and oxygen metabolism, a phenomenon of physiological and pathophysiological importance termed aerobic glycolysis. Previous studies have proposed glutamate and K(+) as the neuronal signals that trigger aerobic glycolysis in astrocytes. Here we used a panel of genetically encoded FRET sensors in vitro and in vivo to investigate the participation of NH4(+), a by-product of catabolism that is also released by active neurons. Astrocytes in mixed cortical cultures responded to physiological levels of NH4(+) with an acute rise in cytosolic lactate followed by lactate release into the extracellular space, as detected by a lactate-sniffer. An acute increase in astrocytic lactate was also observed in acute hippocampal slices exposed to NH4(+) and in the somatosensory cortex of anesthetized mice in response to i.v. NH4(+). Unexpectedly, NH4(+) had no effect on astrocytic glucose consumption. Parallel measurements showed simultaneous cytosolic pyruvate accumulation and NADH depletion, suggesting the involvement of mitochondria. An inhibitor-stop technique confirmed a strong inhibition of mitochondrial pyruvate uptake that can be explained by mitochondrial matrix acidification. These results show that physiological NH4(+) diverts the flux of pyruvate from mitochondria to lactate production and release. Considering that NH4(+) is produced stoichiometrically with glutamate during excitatory neurotransmission, we propose that NH4(+) behaves as an intercellular signal and that pyruvate shunting contributes to aerobic lactate production by astrocytes.

  13. Glycogen serves as an energy source that maintains astrocyte cell proliferation in the neonatal telencephalon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gotoh, Hitoshi; Nomura, Tadashi; Ono, Katsuhiko

    2017-06-01

    Large amounts of energy are required when cells undergo cell proliferation and differentiation for mammalian neuronal development. Early neonatal mice face transient starvation and use stored energy for survival or to support development. Glycogen is a branched polysaccharide that is formed by glucose, and serves as an astrocytic energy store for rapid energy requirements. Although it is present in radial glial cells and astrocytes, the role of glycogen during development remains unclear. In the present study, we demonstrated that glycogen accumulated in glutamate aspartate transporter (GLAST)+ astrocytes in the subventricular zone and rostral migratory stream. Glycogen levels markedly decreased after birth due to the increase of glycogen phosphorylase, an essential enzyme for glycogen metabolism. In primary cultures and in vivo, the inhibition of glycogen phosphorylase decreased the proliferation of astrocytic cells. The number of cells in the G1 phase increased in combination with the up-regulation of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors or down-regulation of the phosphorylation of retinoblastoma protein (pRB), a determinant for cell cycle progression. These results suggest that glycogen accumulates in astrocytes located in specific areas during the prenatal stage and is used as an energy source to maintain normal development in the early postnatal stage.

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. Torakal Ventral Cord Herniation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sermin Tok

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available  Ventral cord herniation is a rare cause of focal myelopathy due to herniation of the thoracic cord through a dural defect.It is also known by a variety of other terms such as spontaneous thoracic cord herniation or idiopathic spinal cord herniation.The key feature is focal distortion and rotation of the cord with no CSF seen between it and the ventral theca.

  17. Aging-associated changes in hippocampal glycogen metabolism in mice. Evidence for and against astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drulis-Fajdasz, Dominika; Gizak, Agnieszka; Wójtowicz, Tomasz; Wiśniewski, Jacek R; Rakus, Dariusz

    2018-03-01

    Lactate derived from astrocytic glycogen has been shown to support memory formation in hippocampi of young animals, inhibiting it in old animals. Here we show, using quantitative mass spectrometry-based proteomics, immunofluorescence, and qPCR that aging is associated with an increase of glycogen metabolism enzymes concentration and shift in their localization from astrocytes to neurons. These changes are accompanied with reorganization of hippocampal energy metabolism which is manifested by elevated capacity of aging neurons to oxidize glucose in glycolysis and mitochondria, and decreased ability for fatty acids utilization. Our observations suggest that astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle may operate in young hippocampi, however, during aging neurons become independent on astrocytic lactate and the metabolic crosstalk between the brain's cells is disrupted. © 2018 The Authors GLIA Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. 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

  19. 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...

  20. Immunocytochemical detection of astrocytes in brain slices in combination with Nissl staining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korzhevskii, D E; Otellin, V A

    2005-07-01

    The present study was performed to develop a simple and reliable method for the combined staining of specimens to allow the advantages of immunocytochemical detection of astrocytes and assessment of the functional state of neurons by the Nissl method to be assessed simultaneously. The protocol suggested for processing paraffin sections allows preservation of tissue structure at high quality and allows the selective identification of astrocytes with counterstaining of neurons by the Nissl method. The protocol can be used without modification for processing brain specimens from humans and various mammals--except mice and rabbits.

  1. 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

  2. Electroacupuncture in the repair of spinal cord injury: inhibiting the Notch signaling pathway and promoting neural stem cell proliferation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xin Geng

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Electroacupuncture for the treatment of spinal cord injury has a good clinical curative effect, but the underlying mechanism is unclear. In our experiments, the spinal cord of adult Sprague-Dawley rats was clamped for 60 seconds. Dazhui (GV14 and Mingmen (GV4 acupoints of rats were subjected to electroacupuncture. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay revealed that the expression of serum inflammatory factors was apparently downregulated in rat models of spinal cord injury after electroacupuncture. Hematoxylin-eosin staining and immunohistochemistry results demonstrated that electroacupuncture contributed to the proliferation of neural stem cells in rat injured spinal cord, and suppressed their differentiation into astrocytes. Real-time quantitative PCR and western blot assays showed that electroacupuncture inhibited activation of the Notch signaling pathway induced by spinal cord injury. These findings indicate that electroacupuncture repaired the injured spinal cord by suppressing the Notch signaling pathway and promoting the proliferation of endogenous neural stem cells.

  3. Coculture with astrocytes reduces the radiosensitivity of glioblastoma stem-like cells and identifies additional targets for radiosensitization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rath, Barbara H; Wahba, Amy; Camphausen, Kevin; Tofilon, Philip J

    2015-01-01

    Toward developing a model system for investigating the role of the microenvironment in the radioresistance of glioblastoma (GBM), human glioblastoma stem-like cells (GSCs) were grown in coculture with human astrocytes. Using a trans-well assay, survival analyses showed that astrocytes significantly decreased the radiosensitivity of GSCs compared to standard culture conditions. In addition, when irradiated in coculture, the initial level of radiation-induced γH2AX foci in GSCs was reduced and foci dispersal was enhanced suggesting that the presence of astrocytes influenced the induction and repair of DNA double-strand breaks. These data indicate that astrocytes can decrease the radiosensitivity of GSCs in vitro via a paracrine-based mechanism and further support a role for the microenvironment as a determinant of GBM radioresponse. Chemokine profiling of coculture media identified a number of bioactive molecules not present under standard culture conditions. The gene expression profiles of GSCs grown in coculture were significantly different as compared to GSCs grown alone. These analyses were consistent with an astrocyte-mediated modification in GSC phenotype and, moreover, suggested a number of potential targets for GSC radiosensitization that were unique to coculture conditions. Along these lines, STAT3 was activated in GSCs grown with astrocytes; the JAK/STAT3 inhibitor WP1066 enhanced the radiosensitivity of GSCs under coculture conditions and when grown as orthotopic xenografts. Further, this coculture system may also provide an approach for identifying additional targets for GBM radiosensitization

  4. 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.

  5. Astrocytes potentiate GABAergic transmission in the thalamic reticular nucleus via endozepine signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christian, Catherine A; Huguenard, John R

    2013-12-10

    Emerging evidence indicates that diazepam-binding inhibitor (DBI) mediates an endogenous benzodiazepine-mimicking (endozepine) effect on synaptic inhibition in the thalamic reticular nucleus (nRT). Here we demonstrate that DBI peptide colocalizes with both astrocytic and neuronal markers in mouse nRT, and investigate the role of astrocytic function in endozepine modulation in this nucleus by testing the effects of the gliotoxin fluorocitrate (FC) on synaptic inhibition and endozepine signaling in the nRT using patch-clamp recordings. FC treatment reduced the effective inhibitory charge of GABAA receptor (GABAAR)-mediated spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in WT mice, indicating that astrocytes enhance GABAAR responses in the nRT. This effect was abolished by both a point mutation that inhibits classical benzodiazepine binding to GABAARs containing the α3 subunit (predominant in the nRT) and a chromosomal deletion that removes the Dbi gene. Thus, astrocytes are required for positive allosteric modulation via the α3 subunit benzodiazepine-binding site by DBI peptide family endozepines. Outside-out sniffer patches pulled from neurons in the adjacent ventrobasal nucleus, which does not contain endozepines, show a potentiated response to laser photostimulation of caged GABA when placed in the nRT. FC treatment blocked the nRT-dependent potentiation of this response, as did the benzodiazepine site antagonist flumazenil. When sniffer patches were placed in the ventrobasal nucleus, however, subsequent treatment with FC led to potentiation of the uncaged GABA response, suggesting nucleus-specific roles for thalamic astrocytes in regulating inhibition. Taken together, these results suggest that astrocytes are required for endozepine actions in the nRT, and as such can be positive modulators of synaptic inhibition.

  6. Upregulation of adenosine kinase in astrocytes in experimental and human temporal lobe epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aronica, Eleonora; Zurolo, Emanuele; Iyer, Anand; de Groot, Marjolein; Anink, Jasper; Carbonell, Caterina; van Vliet, Erwin A; Baayen, Johannes C; Boison, Detlev; Gorter, Jan A

    2011-09-01

    Adenosine kinase (ADK) represents the key metabolic enzyme for the regulation of extracellular adenosine levels in the brain. In adult brain, ADK is primarily present in astrocytes. Several lines of experimental evidence support a critical role of ADK in different types of brain injury associated with astrogliosis, which is also a prominent morphologic feature of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). We hypothesized that dysregulation of ADK is an ubiquitous pathologic hallmark of TLE. Using immunocytochemistry and Western blot analysis, we investigated ADK protein expression in a rat model of TLE during epileptogenesis and the chronic epileptic phase and compared those findings with tissue resected from TLE patients with mesial temporal sclerosis (MTS). In rat control hippocampus and cortex, a low baseline expression of ADK was found with mainly nuclear localization. One week after the electrical induction of status epilepticus (SE), prominent up-regulation of ADK became evident in astrocytes with a characteristic cytoplasmic localization. This increase in ADK persisted at least for 3-4 months after SE in rats developing a progressive form of epilepsy. In line with the findings from the rat model, expression of astrocytic ADK was also found to be increased in the hippocampus and temporal cortex of patients with TLE. In addition, in vitro experiments in human astrocyte cultures showed that ADK expression was increased by several proinflammatory molecules (interleukin-1β and lipopolysaccharide). These results suggest that dysregulation of ADK in astrocytes is a common pathologic hallmark of TLE. Moreover, in vitro data suggest the existence of an additional layer of modulatory crosstalk between the astrocyte-based adenosine cycle and inflammation. Whether this interaction also can play a role in vivo needs to be further investigated. Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2011 International League Against Epilepsy.

  7. 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

  8. A local anesthetic, ropivacaine, suppresses activated microglia via a nerve growth factor-dependent mechanism and astrocytes via a nerve growth factor-independent mechanism in neuropathic pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sakamoto Atsuhiro

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Local anesthetics alleviate neuropathic pain in some cases in clinical practice, and exhibit longer durations of action than those predicted on the basis of the pharmacokinetics of their blocking effects on voltage-dependent sodium channels. Therefore, local anesthetics may contribute to additional mechanisms for reversal of the sensitization of nociceptive pathways that occurs in the neuropathic pain state. In recent years, spinal glial cells, microglia and astrocytes, have been shown to play critical roles in neuropathic pain, but their participation in the analgesic effects of local anesthetics remains largely unknown. Results Repetitive epidural administration of ropivacaine reduced the hyperalgesia induced by chronic constrictive injury of the sciatic nerve. Concomitantly with this analgesia, ropivacaine suppressed the increases in the immunoreactivities of CD11b and glial fibrillary acidic protein in the dorsal spinal cord, as markers of activated microglia and astrocytes, respectively. In addition, epidural administration of a TrkA-IgG fusion protein that blocks the action of nerve growth factor (NGF, which was upregulated by ropivacaine in the dorsal root ganglion, prevented the inhibitory effect of ropivacaine on microglia, but not astrocytes. The blockade of NGF action also abolished the analgesic effect of ropivacaine on neuropathic pain. Conclusions Ropivacaine provides prolonged analgesia possibly by suppressing microglial activation in an NGF-dependent manner and astrocyte activation in an NGF-independent manner in the dorsal spinal cord. Local anesthetics, including ropivacaine, may represent a new approach for glial cell inhibition and, therefore, therapeutic strategies for neuropathic pain.

  9. Astrocytes at the Hub of the Stress Response: Potential Modulation of Neurogenesis by miRNAs in Astrocyte-Derived Exosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luarte, Alejandro; Cisternas, Pablo; Caviedes, Ariel; Batiz, Luis Federico; Lafourcade, Carlos; Wyneken, Ursula; Henzi, Roberto

    2017-01-01

    Repetitive stress negatively affects several brain functions and neuronal networks. Moreover, adult neurogenesis is consistently impaired in chronic stress models and in associated human diseases such as unipolar depression and bipolar disorder, while it is restored by effective antidepressant treatments. The adult neurogenic niche contains neural progenitor cells in addition to amplifying progenitors, neuroblasts, immature and mature neurons, pericytes, astrocytes, and microglial cells. Because of their particular and crucial position, with their end feet enwrapping endothelial cells and their close communication with the cells of the niche, astrocytes might constitute a nodal point to bridge or transduce systemic stress signals from peripheral blood, such as glucocorticoids, to the cells involved in the neurogenic process. It has been proposed that communication between astrocytes and niche cells depends on direct cell-cell contacts and soluble mediators. In addition, new evidence suggests that this communication might be mediated by extracellular vesicles such as exosomes, and in particular, by their miRNA cargo. Here, we address some of the latest findings regarding the impact of stress in the biology of the neurogenic niche, and postulate how astrocytic exosomes (and miRNAs) may play a fundamental role in such phenomenon.

  10. Astrocytes at the Hub of the Stress Response: Potential Modulation of Neurogenesis by miRNAs in Astrocyte-Derived Exosomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Luarte

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Repetitive stress negatively affects several brain functions and neuronal networks. Moreover, adult neurogenesis is consistently impaired in chronic stress models and in associated human diseases such as unipolar depression and bipolar disorder, while it is restored by effective antidepressant treatments. The adult neurogenic niche contains neural progenitor cells in addition to amplifying progenitors, neuroblasts, immature and mature neurons, pericytes, astrocytes, and microglial cells. Because of their particular and crucial position, with their end feet enwrapping endothelial cells and their close communication with the cells of the niche, astrocytes might constitute a nodal point to bridge or transduce systemic stress signals from peripheral blood, such as glucocorticoids, to the cells involved in the neurogenic process. It has been proposed that communication between astrocytes and niche cells depends on direct cell-cell contacts and soluble mediators. In addition, new evidence suggests that this communication might be mediated by extracellular vesicles such as exosomes, and in particular, by their miRNA cargo. Here, we address some of the latest findings regarding the impact of stress in the biology of the neurogenic niche, and postulate how astrocytic exosomes (and miRNAs may play a fundamental role in such phenomenon.

  11. 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

  12. The computational power of astrocyte mediated synaptic plasticity

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    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.

  13. Astrocytic beta 2 Adrenergic Receptor Gene Deletion Affects Memory in Aged Mice

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jensen, Cathy Joanna; Demol, Frauke; Bauwens, Romy; Kooijman, Ron; Massie, Ann; Villers, Agnes; Ris, Laurence; De Keyser, Jacques

    2016-01-01

    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 beta

  14. ASTROCYTES IN THE NEUROPROTECTION AFTER BRAIN STROKE

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    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.

  15. Fluoxetin Upregulates Connexin 43 Expression in Astrocyte

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    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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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 potent inducer of Nrf2 signaling specifically in astrocytes and demonstrate the critical role of Nrf2 in PDTC-mediated protection against oxidative stress. This induction appears to be regulated by both Keap1 and glycogen synthase kinase 3β. Furthermore, the presence of amyloid-beta magnifies PDTC-mediated induction of endogenous protective mechanisms, therefore suggesting that PDTC may be an effective Nrf2 inducer in the context of Alzheimer's disease. Finally, we show that PDTC increases brain copper content and glial expression of heme oxygenase-1, and decreases lipid peroxidation in vivo, promoting a more antioxidative environment. PDTC activates Nrf2 and its antioxidative targets in astrocytes but not neurons. These effects may contribute to the neuroprotection observed for PDTC in models of Alzheimer's disease.

  1. Spinal-cord swelling in acute multiple sclerosis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kikuchi, Seiji; Tashiro, Kunio; Naganuma, Mutsuo; Hida, Kazutoshi; Iwasaki, Yoshinobu; Abe, Hiroshi; Miyasaka, Kazuo

    1986-01-01

    Despite the frequent involvement of the spinal cord by multiple sclerosis, reports concerning neuroradiological findings regarding these lesions have been limited; most of them have demonstrated a normal or small spinal cord. Two cases of acute paraparesis showed evidence of spinal-cord swelling on myelography and CT myelography, initially suggesting the diagnosis of an intramedullary tumor. Spinal-cord swelling was demonstrated more clearly on CT myelography than on conventional myelography. The diagnosis of multiple sclerosis was made with the aid of the CSF findings, the clinical course, and the contracting-cord sign. The ''contracting-cord sign'' means the diminution of the spinal-cord diameter in the chronic stage. Since acute multiple sclerosis may produce spinal-cord swelling simulating a tumor, careful investigations are necessary to avoid unwarranted surgical interventions. (author)

  2. Arrays of microLEDs and astrocytes: biological amplifiers to optogenetically modulate neuronal networks reducing light requirement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rolando Berlinguer-Palmini

    Full Text Available In the modern view of synaptic transmission, astrocytes are no longer confined to the role of merely supportive cells. Although they do not generate action potentials, they nonetheless exhibit electrical activity and can influence surrounding neurons through gliotransmitter release. In this work, we explored whether optogenetic activation of glial cells could act as an amplification mechanism to optical neural stimulation via gliotransmission to the neural network. We studied the modulation of gliotransmission by selective photo-activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 and by means of a matrix of individually addressable super-bright microLEDs (μLEDs with an excitation peak at 470 nm. We combined Ca2+ imaging techniques and concurrent patch-clamp electrophysiology to obtain subsequent glia/neural activity. First, we tested the μLEDs efficacy in stimulating ChR2-transfected astrocyte. ChR2-induced astrocytic current did not desensitize overtime, and was linearly increased and prolonged by increasing μLED irradiance in terms of intensity and surface illumination. Subsequently, ChR2 astrocytic stimulation by broad-field LED illumination with the same spectral profile, increased both glial cells and neuronal calcium transient frequency and sEPSCs suggesting that few ChR2-transfected astrocytes were able to excite surrounding not-ChR2-transfected astrocytes and neurons. Finally, by using the μLEDs array to selectively light stimulate ChR2 positive astrocytes we were able to increase the synaptic activity of single neurons surrounding it. In conclusion, ChR2-transfected astrocytes and μLEDs system were shown to be an amplifier of synaptic activity in mixed corticalneuronal and glial cells culture.

  3. Arrays of microLEDs and astrocytes: biological amplifiers to optogenetically modulate neuronal networks reducing light requirement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berlinguer-Palmini, Rolando; Narducci, Roberto; Merhan, Kamyar; Dilaghi, Arianna; Moroni, Flavio; Masi, Alessio; Scartabelli, Tania; Landucci, Elisa; Sili, Maria; Schettini, Antonio; McGovern, Brian; Maskaant, Pleun; Degenaar, Patrick; Mannaioni, Guido

    2014-01-01

    In the modern view of synaptic transmission, astrocytes are no longer confined to the role of merely supportive cells. Although they do not generate action potentials, they nonetheless exhibit electrical activity and can influence surrounding neurons through gliotransmitter release. In this work, we explored whether optogenetic activation of glial cells could act as an amplification mechanism to optical neural stimulation via gliotransmission to the neural network. We studied the modulation of gliotransmission by selective photo-activation of channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) and by means of a matrix of individually addressable super-bright microLEDs (μLEDs) with an excitation peak at 470 nm. We combined Ca2+ imaging techniques and concurrent patch-clamp electrophysiology to obtain subsequent glia/neural activity. First, we tested the μLEDs efficacy in stimulating ChR2-transfected astrocyte. ChR2-induced astrocytic current did not desensitize overtime, and was linearly increased and prolonged by increasing μLED irradiance in terms of intensity and surface illumination. Subsequently, ChR2 astrocytic stimulation by broad-field LED illumination with the same spectral profile, increased both glial cells and neuronal calcium transient frequency and sEPSCs suggesting that few ChR2-transfected astrocytes were able to excite surrounding not-ChR2-transfected astrocytes and neurons. Finally, by using the μLEDs array to selectively light stimulate ChR2 positive astrocytes we were able to increase the synaptic activity of single neurons surrounding it. In conclusion, ChR2-transfected astrocytes and μLEDs system were shown to be an amplifier of synaptic activity in mixed corticalneuronal and glial cells culture.

  4. Connexin 30 expression and frequency of connexin heterogeneity in astrocyte gap junction plaques increase with age in the rat retina.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hussein Mansour

    Full Text Available We investigated age-associated changes in retinal astrocyte connexins (Cx by assaying Cx numbers, plaque sizes, protein expression levels and heterogeneity of gap junctions utilizing six-marker immunohistochemistry (IHC. We compared Wistar rat retinal wholemounts in animals aged 3 (young adult, 9 (middle-aged and 22 months (aged. We determined that retinal astrocytes have gap junctions composed of Cx26, -30, -43 and -45. Cx30 was consistently elevated at 22 months compared to younger ages both when associated with parenchymal astrocytes and vascular-associated astrocytes. Not only was the absolute number of Cx30 plaques significantly higher (P<0.05 but the size of the plaques was significantly larger at 22 months compared to younger ages (p<0.05. With age, Cx26 increased significantly initially, but returned to basal levels; whereas Cx43 expression remained low and stable with age. Evidence that astrocytes alter connexin compositions of gap junctions was demonstrated by the significant increase in the number of Cx26/Cx45 gap junctions with age. We also found gap junctions comprised of 1, 2, 3 or 4 Cx proteins suggesting that retinal astrocytes use various connexin protein combinations in their gap junctions during development and aging. These data provides new insight into the dynamic and extensive Cx network utilized by retinal astrocytes for communication within both the parenchyma and vasculature for the maintenance of normal retinal physiology with age. This characterisation of the changes in astrocytic gap junctional communication with age in the CNS is crucial to the understanding of physiological aging and age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

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

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    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

  6. [Optogenetic activation of dorsal hippocampal astrocytic Rac1 blocks the learning of associative memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Xiao-Mu; Liao, Zhao-Hui; Tao, Ye-Zheng; Wang, Fei-Fei; Ma, Lan

    2017-06-25

    Rac1 belongs to the family of Rho GTPases, and plays important roles in the brain function. It affects the cell migration and axon guidance via regulating the cytoskeleton and cellular morphology. However, the effect of its dynamic activation in regulating physiological function remains unclear. Recently, a photoactivatable analogue of Rac1 (PA-Rac1) has been developed, allowing the activation of Rac1 by the specific wavelength of light in living cells. Thus, we constructed recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) of PA-Rac1 and its light-insensitive mutant PA-Rac1-C450A under the control of the mouse glial fibrillary acidic protein (mGFAP) promoter to manipulate Rac1 activity in astrocytes by optical stimulation. Primary culture of hippocampal astrocytes was infected with the recombinant AAV-PA-Rac1 or AAV-PA-Rac1-C450A. Real-time fluorescence imaging showed that the cell membrane of the astrocyte expressing PA-Rac1 protruded near the light spot, while the astrocyte expressing PA-Rac1-C450A did not. We injected AAV-PA-Rac1 and AAV-PA-Rac1-C450A into dorsal hippocampus to investigate the role of the activation of Rac1 in regulating the associative learning. With optical stimulation, the PA-Rac1 group, rather than the PA-Rac1-C450A group, showed slower learning curve during the fear conditioning compared with the control group, indicating that activating astrocytic Rac1 blocks the formation of contextual memory. Our data suggest that the activation of Rac1 in dorsal hippocampal astrocyte plays an important role in the associative learning.

  7. 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.

  8. Naltrexone treatment reverses astrocyte atrophy and immune dysfunction in self-harming macaques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kim M; Chiu, Kevin B; Didier, Peter J; Baker, Kate C; MacLean, Andrew G

    2015-11-01

    The role of glia in the development and treatment of behavioral abnormalities is understudied. Recent reports have observed glial activation in several disorders, including depression, autism spectrum disorders and self-injurious behaviors (SIB). In the current study, we examined SIB in the physiologically and anatomically relevant nonhuman primate (NHP) model. At the Tulane National Primate Research Center (TNPRC), approximately 5% of singly housed macaques develop symptoms of SIB. We have previously demonstrated that naltrexone hydrochloride can be effective in reducing SIB. We have also demonstrated that the astrocytes of animals with SIB are distinctly atrophic and display heightened innate immune activation compared with control animals. We have added a third group of animals (five macaques identified with SIB and treated with oral naltrexone at a dose of 3.2mg/kg) to the previous cohort (six macaques with a history of SIB but not treated, and nine animals with no history of SIB) for this study. Gray and white matter astrocytes from frontal cortical tissue were examined following necropsy. Innate immune activation of astrocytes, which was increased in SIB animals, was markedly decreased in animals receiving naltrexone, as was atrophy of both grey and white matter astrocytes. This was concomitant with improved behavioral correlates. Preventing astrocyte activation in select areas of the brain to reduce injurious behavior is an innovative concept with implications for mental health studies. Differences in multiple areas of primate brain would help determine how self-injurious behavior develops. These studies suggest a stronger role for astrocytes in the cellular events associated with self-injurious behaviors. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Astrocytes mediated the nootropic and neurotrophic effects of Sarsasapogenin-AA13 via upregulating brain-derived neurotrophic factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Dong; Mao, Yu; Huang, Cui; Jiao, Qian; Pan, Hui; Ma, Lei; Wang, Rui

    2017-01-01

    Rhizoma Anemarrhena , a widely used traditional Chinese medicine, has previously been shown to have neuroprotective effect. Sarsasapogenin-AA13 (AA13) is a novel synthetic derivative of Sarsasapogenin, which is extracted from Rhizoma Anemarrhena . The aim of this study is to investigate the nootropic and neurotrophic effects of AA13 and underlying mechanisms. In vitro , cell viability of rat primary astrocytes treated with AA13 and neurons cultured with conditioned medium of AA13-treated rat primary astrocytes was tested by MTT assays. In vivo , a pharmacological model of cognitive impairment induced by scopolamine was employed and spatial memory of the mice was assessed by Morris water maze. This study found that AA13 increased cell viability of primary astrocytes and AA13-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium enhanced the survival rate of primary neurons. Interestingly, AA13 markedly enhanced the level of BDNF in astrocytes. Furthermore, AA13 (6 mg/kg) improved the cognitive deficits in animal models (p<0.05) and BDNF and PSD95 levels were increased in brain. Therefore, we hypothesize that AA13 exerts nootropic and neurotrophic activities through astrocytes mediated upregulation of BDNF secretion. The results suggest that AA13 could be a potential compound for cognitive impairment after further research.

  10. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... About Media Donate Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expert Videos ... Home Kim Eberhardt Muir, MS Coping with a New Injury Robin Dorman, PsyD Sex and Fertility After Spinal Cord Injury Diane M. ...

  11. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... of Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Kristine Cichowski, MS Occupational Therapy after Spinal Cord Injury Katie Powell, OT ... does not provide medical advice, recommend or endorse health care products or services, or control the information ...

  12. Spinal Cord Dysfunction (SCD)

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of Veterans Affairs — The Spinal Cord Dysfunction (SCD) module supports the maintenance of local and national registries for the tracking of patients with spinal cord injury and disease...

  13. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Injury Facts and Figures Care and Treatment After SCI Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation Pediatric Spinal Cord Injuries Video Library SCI Medical Experts People Living with SCI Personal Experiences ...

  14. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... of spinal cord injuries? play_arrow What does stem-cell research on animals tell us? play_arrow When can we expect stem-cell treatments to become available for spinal cord injuries? ...

  15. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... spinal cord injuries? play_arrow What does stem-cell research on animals tell us? play_arrow When can we expect stem-cell treatments to become available for spinal cord injuries? ...

  16. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Spinal Cord Injuries Video Library SCI Medical Experts People Living with SCI Personal Experiences by Topic Resources ... Spinal Cord Injuries Video Library SCI Medical Experts People Living with SCI Personal Experiences by Topic Resources ...

  17. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... play_arrow What are the chances of regaining feeling and mobility after a spinal cord injury? play_arrow How long does it usually take for feeling and movement to return after a spinal cord ...

  18. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... RN Pediatric Injuries Pediatric Spinal Cord Injury 101 Lawrence Vogel, MD The Basics of Pediatric SCI Rehabilitation ... Rogers, PT Recreational Therapy after Spinal Cord Injury Jennifer Piatt, PhD David Chen, MD Read Bio Medical ...

  19. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Disabilities Photography by Rona Talcott Website by Mobile Marketing LLC Understanding Spinal Cord Injury About Us Expert Videos Contact Us Personal Experience Videos Blog Videos By Topic Media Resources Donate to support families facing spinal cord ...

  20. Tethered Spinal Cord Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... cord over time and may be exacerbated during sports or pregnancy, or may be due to narrowing of the ... cord over time and may be exacerbated during sports or pregnancy, or may be due to narrowing of the ...

  1. Spinal cord stimulation

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    ... this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007560.htm Spinal cord stimulation To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. Spinal cord stimulation is a treatment for pain that uses ...

  2. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Spinal Cord Injury 101 Lawrence Vogel, MD The Basics of Pediatric SCI Rehabilitation Sara Klaas, MSW Transitions for Children with Spinal Cord Injury Patricia Mucia, RN Family Life After Pediatric Spinal Injury Dawn Sheaffer, MSW Rehabilitation ...

  3. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Spinal Cord Injury 101 David Chen, MD Preventing Pressure Sores Mary Zeigler, MS Transition from Hospital to ... a spinal cord injury? play_arrow Why are high-dose steroids often used right after an injury? ...

  4. Identification of gene products suppressed by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 infection or gp120 exposure of primary human astrocytes by rapid subtraction hybridization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Zao-Zhong; Kang, Dong-Chul; Chen, Yinming; Pekarskaya, Olga; Chao, Wei; Volsky, David J; Fisher, Paul B

    2003-06-01

    Neurodegeneration and human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-associated dementia (HAD) are the major disease manifestations of HIV-1 colonization of the central nervous system (CNS). In the brain, HIV-1 replicates in microglial cells and infiltrating macrophages and it persists in a low-productive, noncytolytic state in astrocytes. Astrocytes play critical roles in the maintenance of the brain microenvironment, responses to injury, and in neuronal signal transmission, and disruption of these functions by HIV-1 could contribute to HAD. To better understand the potential effects of HIV-1 on astrocyte biology, the authors investigated changes in gene expression using an efficient and sensitive rapid subtraction hybridization approach, RaSH. Primary human astrocytes were isolated from abortus brain tissue, low-passage cells were infected with HIV-1 or mock infected, and total cellular RNAs were isolated at multiple time points over a period of 1 week. This approach is designed to identify gene products modulated early and late after HIV-1 infection and limits the cloning of genes displaying normal cell-cycle fluctuations in astrocytes. By subtracting temporal cDNAs derived from HIV-1-infected astrocytes from temporal cDNAs made from uninfected cells, 10 genes displaying reduced expression in infected cells, termed astrocyte suppressed genes (ASGs), were identified and their suppression was confirmed by Northern blot hybridization. Both known and novel ASGs, not reported in current DNA databases, that are down-regulated by HIV-1 infection are described. Northern blotting confirms suppression of the same panel of ASGs by treatment of astrocytes with recombinant HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein, gp120. These results extend our previous analysis of astrocyte genes induced or enhanced by HIV-1 infection and together they suggest that HIV-1 and viral proteins have profound effects on astrocyte physiology, which may influence their function in the CNS.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... the spinal cord work? play_arrow Why is the level of a spinal cord injury important? play_arrow What role does “compression” play in a spinal cord injury? play_arrow Why are high-dose steroids often used right after an injury? play_arrow What is meant ...

  8. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... arrow What is the “Spinal Cord Injury Model Systems” program? play_arrow What are the most promising new treatments for spinal cord injuries? play_arrow What are the latest developments in the use of electrical stimulation for spinal cord injuries? play_arrow ...

  9. Spinal Cord Injuries

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    ... forth between your body and your brain. A spinal cord injury disrupts the signals. Spinal cord injuries usually begin with a blow that fractures or ... down on the nerve parts that carry signals. Spinal cord injuries can be complete or incomplete. With a complete ...

  10. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... injury? play_arrow How does the spinal cord work? play_arrow Why is the level of a spinal cord injury important? play_arrow What role does “compression” play in a spinal cord injury? play_arrow Why are high-dose steroids often used right after an injury? play_arrow What is meant ...

  11. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Abuse and Spinal Cord Injury Allen Heinemann, PhD How Peer Counseling Works Julie Gassaway, MS, RN Pediatric Injuries Pediatric Spinal ... What is a spinal cord injury? play_arrow How does the spinal cord work? play_arrow Why is the level of a ...

  12. Transplantation of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood promotes functional recovery after traumatic spinal cord injury in Wistar rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodrigues, L.P.; Iglesias, D.; Nicola, F.C.; Steffens, D.; Valentim, L.; Witczak, A.; Zanatta, G.; Achaval, M.; Pranke, P.; Netto, C.A.

    2011-01-01

    Cell transplantation is a promising experimental treatment for spinal cord injury. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the efficacy of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood in promoting functional recovery when transplanted after a contusion spinal cord injury. Female Wistar rats (12 weeks old) were submitted to spinal injury with a MASCIS impactor and divided into 4 groups: control, surgical control, spinal cord injury, and one cell-treated lesion group. Mononuclear cells from umbilical cord blood of human male neonates were transplanted in two experiments: a) 1 h after surgery, into the injury site at a concentration of 5 x 10 6 cells diluted in 10 µL 0.9% NaCl (N = 8-10 per group); b) into the cisterna magna, 9 days after lesion at a concentration of 5 x 10 6 cells diluted in 150 µL 0.9% NaCl (N = 12-14 per group). The transplanted animals were immunosuppressed with cyclosporin-A (10 mg/kg per day). The BBB scale was used to evaluate motor behavior and the injury site was analyzed with immunofluorescent markers to label human transplanted cells, oligodendrocytes, neurons, and astrocytes. Spinal cord injury rats had 25% loss of cord tissue and cell treatment did not affect lesion extension. Transplanted cells survived in the injured area for 6 weeks after the procedure and both transplanted groups showed better motor recovery than the untreated ones (P < 0.05). The transplantation of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood promoted functional recovery with no evidence of cell differentiation

  13. Transplantation of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood promotes functional recovery after traumatic spinal cord injury in Wistar rats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodrigues, L.P. [Programa de Pós-Graduação em Neurociências, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Iglesias, D. [Laboratório de Hematologia e Células-Tronco, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Nicola, F.C. [Departamento de Bioquímica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Steffens, D. [Laboratório de Hematologia e Células-Tronco, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Valentim, L.; Witczak, A.; Zanatta, G. [Departamento de Bioquímica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Achaval, M. [Departamento de Ciências Morfológicas, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Pranke, P. [Laboratório de Hematologia e Células-Tronco, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Netto, C.A. [Departamento de Bioquímica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil)

    2011-12-23

    Cell transplantation is a promising experimental treatment for spinal cord injury. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the efficacy of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood in promoting functional recovery when transplanted after a contusion spinal cord injury. Female Wistar rats (12 weeks old) were submitted to spinal injury with a MASCIS impactor and divided into 4 groups: control, surgical control, spinal cord injury, and one cell-treated lesion group. Mononuclear cells from umbilical cord blood of human male neonates were transplanted in two experiments: a) 1 h after surgery, into the injury site at a concentration of 5 x 10{sup 6} cells diluted in 10 µL 0.9% NaCl (N = 8-10 per group); b) into the cisterna magna, 9 days after lesion at a concentration of 5 x 10{sup 6} cells diluted in 150 µL 0.9% NaCl (N = 12-14 per group). The transplanted animals were immunosuppressed with cyclosporin-A (10 mg/kg per day). The BBB scale was used to evaluate motor behavior and the injury site was analyzed with immunofluorescent markers to label human transplanted cells, oligodendrocytes, neurons, and astrocytes. Spinal cord injury rats had 25% loss of cord tissue and cell treatment did not affect lesion extension. Transplanted cells survived in the injured area for 6 weeks after the procedure and both transplanted groups showed better motor recovery than the untreated ones (P < 0.05). The transplantation of mononuclear cells from human umbilical cord blood promoted functional recovery with no evidence of cell differentiation.

  14. Lauric Acid Stimulates Ketone Body Production in the KT-5 Astrocyte Cell Line.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nonaka, Yudai; Takagi, Tetsuo; Inai, Makoto; Nishimura, Shuhei; Urashima, Shogo; Honda, Kazumitsu; Aoyama, Toshiaki; Terada, Shin

    2016-08-01

    Coconut oil has recently attracted considerable attention as a potential Alzheimer's disease therapy because it contains large amounts of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) and its consumption is thought to stimulate hepatic ketogenesis, supplying an alternative energy source for brains with impaired glucose metabolism. In this study, we first reevaluated the responses of plasma ketone bodies to oral administration of coconut oil to rats. We found that the coconut oil-induced increase in plasma ketone body concentration was negligible and did not significantly differ from that observed after high-oleic sunflower oil administration. In contrast, the administration of coconut oil substantially increased the plasma free fatty acid concentration and lauric acid content, which is the major MCFA in coconut oil. Next, to elucidate whether lauric acid can activate ketogenesis in astrocytes with the capacity to generate ketone bodies from fatty acids, we treated the KT-5 astrocyte cell line with 50 and 100 μM lauric acid for 4 h. The lauric acid treatments increased the total ketone body concentration in the cell culture supernatant to a greater extent than oleic acid, suggesting that lauric acid can directly and potently activate ketogenesis in KT-5 astrocytes. These results suggest that coconut oil intake may improve brain health by directly activating ketogenesis in astrocytes and thereby by providing fuel to neighboring neurons.

  15. 3-bromopyruvate inhibits glycolysis, depletes cellular glutathione, and compromises the viability of cultured primary rat astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrke, Eric; Arend, Christian; Dringen, Ralf

    2015-07-01

    The pyruvate analogue 3-bromopyruvate (3-BP) is an electrophilic alkylator that is considered a promising anticancer drug because it has been shown to kill cancer cells efficiently while having little toxic effect on nontumor cells. To test for potential adverse effects of 3-BP on brain cells, we exposed cultured primary rat astrocytes to 3-BP and investigated the effects of this compound on cell viability, glucose metabolism, and glutathione (GSH) content. The presence of 3-BP severely compromised cell viability and slowed cellular glucose consumption and lactate production in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, with half-maximal effects observed at about 100 µM 3-BP after 4 hr of incubation. The cellular hexokinase activity was not affected in 3-BP-treated astrocytes, whereas within 30 min after application of 3-BP the activity of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) was inhibited, and cellular GSH content was depleted in a concentration-dependent manner, with half-maximal effects observed at about 30 µM 3-BP. The depletion of cellular GSH after exposure to 100 µM 3-BP was not prevented by the presence of 10 mM of the monocarboxylates lactate or pyruvate, suggesting that 3-BP is not taken up into astrocytes predominantly by monocarboxylate transporters. The data suggest that inhibition of glycolysis by inactivation of GAPDH and GSH depletion contributes to the toxicity that was observed for 3-BP-treated cultured astrocytes. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. High-fat diet feeding causes rapid, non-apoptotic cleavage of caspase-3 in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guyenet, Stephan J; Nguyen, Hong T; Hwang, Bang H; Schwartz, Michael W; Baskin, Denis G; Thaler, Joshua P

    2013-05-28

    Astrocytes respond to multiple forms of central nervous system (CNS) injury by entering a reactive state characterized by morphological changes and a specific pattern of altered protein expression. Termed astrogliosis, this response has been shown to strongly influence the injury response and functional recovery of CNS tissues. This pattern of CNS inflammation and injury associated with astrogliosis has recently been found to occur in the energy homeostasis centers of the hypothalamus during diet-induced obesity (DIO) in rodent models, but the characterization of the astrocyte response remains incomplete. Here, we report that astrocytes in the mediobasal hypothalamus respond robustly and rapidly to purified high-fat diet (HFD) feeding by cleaving caspase-3, a protease whose cleavage is often associated with apoptosis. Although obesity develops in HFD-fed rats by day 14, caspase-3 cleavage occurs by day 3, prior to the development of obesity, suggesting the possibility that it could play a causal role in the hypothalamic neuropathology and fat gain observed in DIO. Caspase-3 cleavage is not associated with an increase in the rate of apoptosis, as determined by TUNEL staining, suggesting it plays a non-apoptotic role analogous to the response to excitotoxic neuron injury. Our results indicate that astrocytes in the mediobasal hypothalamus respond rapidly and robustly to HFD feeding, activating caspase-3 in the absence of apoptosis, a process that has the potential to influence the course of DIO. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Spinal Cord Glioneuronal Tumor with Rosetted Neuropil-Like Islands in Pediatric Age Group

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nil Comunoglu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Glioneuronal neoplasms are rare tumors. Recently, an unusual glioneuronal tumor histologically showing neuropil-like islands has been described. Here, we present such a tumor originating from spinal cord of a 14-year-old girl, who has scoliosis and urinary incontinence. Microscopically, the glial component was chiefly fibrillary astrocytic, punctuated by neuropil-like islands. Immunohistochemically, glial tissue was GFAP positive, and neuropil-like areas and big neurons were synaptophysin reactive. For astrocytic component Ki-67 proliferation index was 1% and p53 was immunonegative. This case is unique in that in the literature it is the second reported case in pediatric age group that is located at spinal cord.

  18. TGF-β2 and TGF-β3 from cultured β-amyloid-treated or 3xTg-AD-derived astrocytes may mediate astrocyte-neuron communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapella, Laura; Cerruti, Matteo; Biocotino, Isabella; Stevano, Alessio; Rocchio, Francesca; Canonico, Pier Luigi; Grilli, Mariagrazia; Genazzani, Armando A; Lim, Dmitry

    2018-02-01

    Astrocytes participate in the development and resolution of neuroinflammation in numerous ways, including the release of cytokines and growth factors. Among many, astrocytes release transforming growth factors beta (TGF-β) TGF-β1, TGF-β2 and TGF-β3. TGF-β1 is the most studied isoform, while production and release of TGF-β2 and TGF-β3 by astrocytes have been poorly characterized. Here, we report that purified cultures of hippocampal astrocytes produce mainly TGF-β3 followed by TGF-β2 and TGF-β1. Furthermore, astrocytes release principally the active form of TGF-β3 over the other two. Changes in release of TGF-β were sensitive to the calcineurin (CaN) inhibitor FK506. Starvation had no effect on TGF-β1 and TGF-β3 while TGF-β2 mRNA was significantly up-regulated in a CaN-dependent manner. We further investigated production and release of astroglial TGF-β in Alzheimer's disease-related conditions. Oligomeric β-amyloid (Aβ) down-regulated TGF-β1, while up-regulating TGF-β2 and TGF-β3, in a CaN-dependent manner. In cultured hippocampal astrocytes from 3xTg-AD mice, TGF-β2 and TGF-β3, but not TGF-β1, were up-regulated, and this was CaN-independent. In hippocampal tissues from symptomatic 3xTg-AD mice, TGF-β2 was up-regulated with respect to control mice. Finally, treatment with recombinant TGF-βs showed that TGF-β2 and TGF-β3 significantly reduced PSD95 protein in cultured hippocampal neurons, and this effect was paralleled by conditioned media from Aβ-treated astrocytes or from astrocytes from 3xTg-AD mice. Taken together, our data suggest that TGF-β2 and TGF-β3 are produced by astrocytes in a CaN-dependent manner and should be investigated further in the context of astrocyte-mediated neurodegeneration. © 2017 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  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. 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.

  3. Decreased astrocytic thrombospondin-1 secretion after chronic ammonia treatment reduces the level of synaptic proteins: in vitro and in vivo studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, Arumugam R; Tong, Xiao Y; Curtis, Kevin M; Ruiz-Cordero, Roberto; Shamaladevi, Nagarajarao; Abuzamel, Missa; Johnstone, Joshua; Gaidosh, Gabriel; Rama Rao, Kakulavarapu V; Norenberg, Michael D

    2014-11-01

    Chronic hepatic encephalopathy (CHE) is a major complication in patients with severe liver disease. Elevated blood and brain ammonia levels have been implicated in its pathogenesis, and astrocytes are the principal neural cells involved in this disorder. Since defective synthesis and release of astrocytic factors have been shown to impair synaptic integrity in other neurological conditions, we examined whether thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1), an astrocytic factor involved in the maintenance of synaptic integrity, is also altered in CHE. Cultured astrocytes were exposed to ammonia (NH₄Cl, 0.5-2.5 mM) for 1-10 days, and TSP-1 content was measured in cell extracts and culture media. Astrocytes exposed to ammonia exhibited a reduction in intra- and extracellular TSP-1 levels. Exposure of cultured neurons to conditioned media from ammonia-treated astrocytes showed a decrease in synaptophysin, PSD95, and synaptotagmin levels. Conditioned media from TSP-1 over-expressing astrocytes that were treated with ammonia, when added to cultured neurons, reversed the decline in synaptic proteins. Recombinant TSP-1 similarly reversed the decrease in synaptic proteins. Metformin, an agent known to increase TSP-1 synthesis in other cell types, also reversed the ammonia-induced TSP-1 reduction. Likewise, we found a significant decline in TSP-1 level in cortical astrocytes, as well as a reduction in synaptophysin content in vivo in a rat model of CHE. These findings suggest that TSP-1 may represent an important therapeutic target for CHE. Defective release of astrocytic factors may impair synaptic integrity in chronic hepatic encephalopathy. We found a reduction in the release of the astrocytic matricellular proteins thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) in ammonia-treated astrocytes; such reduction was associated with a decrease in synaptic proteins caused by conditioned media from ammonia-treated astrocytes. Exposure of neurons to CM from ammonia-treated astrocytes, in which TSP-1 is over

  4. 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

  5. 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...

  6. 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...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  10. 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.

  11. Cultured human astrocytes secrete large cholesteryl ester- andtriglyceride-rich lipoproteins along with endothelial lipase

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Lin; Liu, Yanzhu; Forte, Trudy M.; Chisholm, Jeffrey W.; Parks, John S.; Shachter, Neil S.

    2003-12-01

    We cultured normal human astrocytes and characterized their secreted lipoproteins. Human astrocytes secreted lipoproteins in the size range of plasma VLDL (Peak 1), LDL (Peak 2), HDL (Peak 3) and a smaller peak (Peak 4), as determined by gel filtration chromatography, nondenaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and transmission electron microscopy. Cholesterol enrichment of astrocytes led to a particular increase in Peak 1. Almost all Peak 2, 3 and 4 cholesterol and most Peak 1 cholesterol was esterified (unlike mouse astrocyte lipoproteins, which exhibited similar peaks but where cholesterol was predominantly non-esterified). Triglycerides were present at about 2/3 the level of cholesterol. LCAT was detected along with two of its activators, apolipoprotein (apo) A-IV and apoC-I. ApoA-I and apoA-II mRNA and protein were absent. ApoJ was present equally in all peaks but apoE was present predominantly in peaks 3 and 4. ApoB was not detected. The electron microscopic appearance of Peak 1 lipoproteins suggested partial lipolysis leading to the detection of a heparin-releasable triglyceride lipase consistent with endothelial lipase. The increased neuronal delivery of lipids from large lipoprotein particles, for which apoE4 has greater affinity than does apoE3, may be a mechanism whereby the apoE {var_epsilon}4 allele contributes to neurodegenerative risk.

  12. Ultralow concentrations of bupivacaine exert anti-inflammatory effects on inflammation-reactive astrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Block, Linda; Jörneberg, Per; Björklund, Ulrika; Westerlund, Anna; Biber, Björn; Hansson, Elisabeth

    2013-01-01

    Bupivacaine is a widely used, local anesthetic agent that blocks voltage-gated Na+ channels when used for neuro-axial blockades. Much lower concentrations of bupivacaine than in normal clinical use, bupivacaine exerts an influence on the Ca2+ signaling and interleukin-1β (IL-1β) secretion in inflammation-reactive astrocytes when used at ultralow concentrations, bupivacaine interacts with the opioid-, 5-hydroxytryptamine- (5-HT) and glutamate-receptor systems. With respect to the μ-opioid- and 5-HT-receptor systems, bupivacaine restored the inflammation-reactive astrocytes to their normal non-inflammatory levels. With respect to the glutamate-receptor system, bupivacaine, in combination with an ultralow concentration of the μ-opioid receptor antagonist naloxone and μ-opioid receptor agonists, restored the inflammation-reactive astrocytes to their normal non-inflammatory levels. Ultralow concentrations of bupivacaine attenuated the inflammation-induced upregulation of IL-1β secretion. The results indicate that bupivacaine interacts with the opioid-, 5-HT- and glutamate-receptor systems by affecting Ca2+ signaling and IL-1β release in inflammation-reactive astrocytes. These results suggest that bupivacaine may be used at ultralow concentrations as an anti-inflammatory drug, either alone or in combination with opioid agonists and ultralow concentrations of an opioid antagonist. PMID:24083665

  13. Mechanosensitivity of astrocytes on optimized polyacrylamide gels analyzed by quantitative morphometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moshayedi, Pouria; Christ, Andreas; Guck, Jochen; Franze, Kristian; Da F Costa, Luciano; Lacour, Stephanie P; Fawcett, James

    2010-01-01

    Cells are able to detect and respond to mechanical cues from their environment. Previous studies have investigated this mechanosensitivity on various cell types, including neural cells such as astrocytes. In this study, we have carefully optimized polyacrylamide gels, commonly used as compliant growth substrates, considering their homogeneity in surface topography, mechanical properties, and coating density, and identified several potential pitfalls for the purpose of mechanosensitivity studies. The resulting astrocyte response to growth on substrates with shear storage moduli of G' 100 Pa and G' = 10 kPa was then evaluated as a function of coating density of poly-D-lysine using quantitative morphometric analysis. Astrocytes cultured on stiff substrates showed significantly increased perimeter, area, diameter, elongation, number of extremities and overall complexity if compared to those cultured on compliant substrates. A statistically significant difference in the overall morphological score was confirmed with an artificial intelligence-based shape analysis. The dependence of the cells' morphology on PDL coating density seemed to be weak compared to the effect of the substrate stiffness and was slightly biphasic, with a maximum at 10-100 μg ml -1 PDL concentration. Our finding suggests that the compliance of the surrounding tissue in vivo may influence astrocyte morphology and behavior.

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

    2015-01-01

    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. 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. Inhibition of NFκB signaling in astrocytes prevented acute high-fat diet-induced astrocyte activation and resulted in a 15% increase in caloric intake (P fat feeding.

  18. Disruption in connexin-based communication is associated with intracellular Ca²⁺ signal alterations in astrocytes from Niemann-Pick type C mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo J Sáez

    Full Text Available Reduced astrocytic gap junctional communication and enhanced hemichannel activity were recently shown to increase astroglial and neuronal vulnerability to neuroinflammation. Moreover, increasing evidence suggests that neuroinflammation plays a pivotal role in the development of Niemann-Pick type C (NPC disease, an autosomal lethal neurodegenerative disorder that is mainly caused by mutations in the NPC1 gene. Therefore, we investigated whether the lack of NPC1 expression in murine astrocytes affects the functional state of gap junction channels and hemichannels. Cultured cortical astrocytes of NPC1 knock-out mice (Npc1⁻/⁻ showed reduced intercellular communication via gap junctions and increased hemichannel activity. Similarly, astrocytes of newborn Npc1⁻/⁻ hippocampal slices presented high hemichannel activity, which was completely abrogated by connexin 43 hemichannel blockers and was resistant to inhibitors of pannexin 1 hemichannels. Npc1⁻/⁻ astrocytes also showed more intracellular Ca²⁺ signal oscillations mediated by functional connexin 43 hemichannels and P2Y₁ receptors. Therefore, Npc1⁻/⁻ astrocytes present features of connexin based channels compatible with those of reactive astrocytes and hemichannels might be a novel therapeutic target to reduce neuroinflammation in NPC disease.

  19. Disruption in connexin-based communication is associated with intracellular Ca²⁺ signal alterations in astrocytes from Niemann-Pick type C mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sáez, Pablo J; Orellana, Juan A; Vega-Riveros, Natalia; Figueroa, Vania A; Hernández, Diego E; Castro, Juan F; Klein, Andrés D; Jiang, Jean X; Zanlungo, Silvana; Sáez, Juan C

    2013-01-01

    Reduced astrocytic gap junctional communication and enhanced hemichannel activity were recently shown to increase astroglial and neuronal vulnerability to neuroinflammation. Moreover, increasing evidence suggests that neuroinflammation plays a pivotal role in the development of Niemann-Pick type C (NPC) disease, an autosomal lethal neurodegenerative disorder that is mainly caused by mutations in the NPC1 gene. Therefore, we investigated whether the lack of NPC1 expression in murine astrocytes affects the functional state of gap junction channels and hemichannels. Cultured cortical astrocytes of NPC1 knock-out mice (Npc1⁻/⁻) showed reduced intercellular communication via gap junctions and increased hemichannel activity. Similarly, astrocytes of newborn Npc1⁻/⁻ hippocampal slices presented high hemichannel activity, which was completely abrogated by connexin 43 hemichannel blockers and was resistant to inhibitors of pannexin 1 hemichannels. Npc1⁻/⁻ astrocytes also showed more intracellular Ca²⁺ signal oscillations mediated by functional connexin 43 hemichannels and P2Y₁ receptors. Therefore, Npc1⁻/⁻ astrocytes present features of connexin based channels compatible with those of reactive astrocytes and hemichannels might be a novel therapeutic target to reduce neuroinflammation in NPC disease.

  20. Astrocytes in the nucleus of the solitary tract are activated by low glucose or glucoprivation: evidence for glial involvement in glucose homeostasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougal, David H; Hermann, Gerlinda E; Rogers, Richard C

    2013-01-01

    Glucose homeostasis is maintained through interplay between central and peripheral control mechanisms which are aimed at storing excess glucose following meals and mobilizing these same stores during periods of fasting. The nucleus of the solitary tract (NST) in the dorsal medulla has long been associated with the central detection of glucose availability and the control of glucose homeostasis. Recent evidence has emerged which supports the involvement of astrocytes in glucose homeostasis. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether NST-astrocytes respond to physiologically relevant decreases in glucose availability, in vitro, as well as to the presence of the glucoprivic compound 2-deoxy-D-Glucose. This report demonstrates that some NST-astrocytes are capable of responding to low glucose or glucoprivation by increasing cytoplasmic calcium; a change that reverses with restoration of normal glucose availability. While some NST-neurons also demonstrate an increase in calcium signaling during low glucose availability, this effect is smaller and somewhat delayed compared to those observed in adjacent astrocytes. TTX did not abolish these hypoglycemia mediated responses of astrocytes, suggesting that NST-astrocytes may be directly sensing low glucose levels as opposed to responding to neuronal detection of hypoglycemia. Thus, chemodetection of low glucose by NST-astrocytes may play an important role in the autonomic regulation of glucose homeostasis.

  1. Astrocytes in the nucleus of the solitary tract are activated by low glucose or glucoprivation: evidence for glial involvement in glucose homeostasis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Harry McDougal

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Glucose homeostasis is maintained through interplay between central and peripheral control mechanisms which are aimed at storing excess glucose following meals and mobilizing these same stores during periods of fasting. The nucleus of the solitary tract (NST in the dorsal medulla has long been associated with the central detection of glucose availability and the control of glucose homeostasis. Recent evidence has emerged which supports the involvement of astrocytes in glucose homeostasis. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether NST-astrocytes respond to physiologically relevant decreases in glucose availability, in vitro, as well as to the presence of the glucoprivic compound 2-deoxy-D-Glucose. This report demonstrates that some NST-astrocytes are capable of responding to low glucose or glucoprivation by increasing cytoplasmic calcium; a change that reverses with restoration of normal glucose availability. While some NST-neurons also demonstrate an increase in calcium signaling during low glucose availability, this effect is smaller and somewhat delayed compared to those observed in adjacent astrocytes. TTX did not abolish these hypoglycemia mediated responses of astrocytes, suggesting that NST-astrocytes may be directly sensing low glucose levels as opposed to responding to neuronal detection of hypoglycemia. Thus, chemodetection of low glucose by NST-astrocytes may play an important role in the autonomic regulation of glucose homeostasis.

  2. 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.

  3. Phospholipase A2 is involved in galactosylsphingosine-induced astrocyte toxicity, neuronal damage and demyelination.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cedric Misslin

    Full Text Available Krabbe disease is a fatal rare inherited lipid storage disorder affecting 1:100,000 births. This illness is caused by mutations in the galc gene encoding for the enzyme galactosylceramidase (GALC. Dysfunction of GALC has been linked to the toxic build-up of the galactolipid, galactosylsphingosine (psychosine, which induces cell death of oligodendrocytes. Previous studies show that phospholipase A2 (PLA2 may play a role in psychosine induce cell death. Here, we demonstrate that non-selective inhibition of cPLA2/sPLA2 and selective inhibition of cPLA2, but not sPLA2, also attenuates psychosine-induced cell death of human astrocytes. This study shows that extracellular calcium is required for psychosine induced cell death, but intracellular calcium release, reactive oxygen species or release of soluble factors are not involved. These findings suggest a cell autonomous effect, at least in human astrocytes. Supporting a role for PLA2 in psychosine-induced cell death of oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, the results show inhibition of PLA2 attenuates psychosine-induced decrease in the expression of astrocyte marker vimentin as well as myelin basic protein (MBP, myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG and the neuronal marker SMI-32 in organotypic slice cultures. These findings provide further mechanistic details of psychosine-induced death of glia and suggest a role for PLA2 in the process. This work also supports the proposal that novel drugs for Krabbe disease may require testing on astrocytes as well as oligodendrocytes for more holistic prediction of pre-clinical and clinical efficacy.

  4. The pathway of subarachnoid CSF moving into the spinal parenchyma and the role of astrocytic aquaporin-4 in this process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Fang; Zhang, Cui; Xue, Rong; Shan, Lidong; Gong, Shan; Wang, Guoqing; Tao, Jin; Xu, Guangyin; Zhang, Guoxing; Wang, Linhui

    2017-08-01

    It has been proved that cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the subarachnoid space could reenter the brain parenchyma via the perivascular space. The present study was designed to explore the pathway of subarachnoid CSF flux into the spinal cord and the potential role of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) in this process. Fluorescently tagged cadaverine, for the first time, was used to study CSF movement in mice. Following intracisternal infusion of CSF tracers, the cervical spinal cord was sliced and prepared for fluorescence imaging. Some sections were subject with immunostaining in order to observe tracer distribution and AQP4 expression. Fluorescently tagged cadaverine rapidly entered the spinal cord. Tracer influx into the spinal parenchyma was time dependent. At 10min post-infusion, cadaverine was largely distributed in the superficial tissue adjacent to the pial surface. At 70min post-infusion, cadaverine was distributed in the whole cord and especially concentrated in the gray matter. Furthermore, fluorescent tracer could enter the spinal parenchyma either along the perivascular space or across the pial surface. AQP4 was observed highly expressed in the astrocytic endfeet surrounding blood vessels and the pial surface. Blocking AQP4 by its specific inhibitor TGN-020 strikingly reduced the inflow of CSF tracers into the spinal cord. Subarachnoid CSF could flow into the spinal cord along the perivascular space or across the pial surface, in which AQP4 is involved. Our observation provides a basis for the study on CSF movement in the spinal cord when some neurological diseases occur. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Clusterin and Megalin in The Spinal Cord

    OpenAIRE

    Wicher, Grzegorz

    2006-01-01

    Nerve injury induces up-regulation of the chaperone protein clusterin in affected neurons and adjacent astrocytes but the functional significance of this response is unclear. We find that motor neuron survival is significantly greater in clusterin(+/+) compared to (-/-) mice. These results suggest that endogenous expression of clusterin is neuroprotective after nerve injury. However, motor neuron survival in clusterin overexpressing mice was not different from that in wildtype mice. In contra...

  6. Stem Cells: New Hope For Spinal Cord Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gazdic Marina

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Stem cell therapy offers several attractive strategies for spinal cord repair. The regenerative potential of pluripotent stem cells was confirmed in an animal model of Spinal Cord Injury (SCI; nevertheless, optimized growth and differentiation protocols along with reliable safety assays should be established prior to the clinical application of hESCs and iPSCs. Th e therapeutic effects of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs in SCI result from neurotrophin secretion, angiogenesis, and antiinflammatory actions. Several preclinical SCI studies have reported that the occurrence of axonal extension, remyelination and neuroprotection occur after the transplantation of olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs. The transplantation of neural stem cells NSCs (NSCs promotes partial functional improvement after SCI because of their potential to differentiate into neurons, oligodendrocytes, and astrocytes. The ideal source of stem cells for safe and efficient cell-based therapy for SCI remains a challenging issue that requires further investigation.

  7. The role of timing in the treatment of spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saghazadeh, Amene; Rezaei, Nima

    2017-08-01

    Regeneration failure after primary spinal cord injury (SCI) leads to diverse clinical complications in a severity- and level of SCI-dependent manner. The cost of treating both of them (initial regeneration failure and following complications) would be prohibitive, particularly in less developed nations. The well-recognized circumstances arose from primary SCI include excitotoxicity and inflammation. SCI increases concentrations of extracellular amino acids (EAAs) in the severity-dependent manner and the maximum level of EAAs at the injury site will be reduced by distance from the injury site. Increased concentrations of EAAs and their signaling result in energy and metabolic changes and eventually neurotoxicity. Therefore EAAs play a crucial role in moving towards secondary stage of SCI. There is a close correspondence between severity of SCI and intensity of acute inflammatory response, which includes proinflammatory cytokines (IL-1β, TNF-α, and IL-6) and immune cells (neutrophils, microglia, and mast cells). The communication between microglia and astrocytes mediate formation of astroglial scar. The scar is thought to diminish the spread of inflammation and lesion volume, and on the other side poses an obstacle to achieving axon regeneration. Moreover, mast cells exert an anti-inflammatory role in the ground of injured spinal cord by degradation of proinflammatory mediators, while mast cells-derived histamine may cause excitotoxicity. Therefore research suggests a very double-sword remark about the work of inflammatory mediators in the injured spinal cord. Myelin associated inhibitors (MAIs) are among the growing list of extrinsic inhibitors of neuroregeneration in the injured-CNS. They function via NgR-dependent mechanisms. The time for intervention by NgR antagonists must be fixed according to the expression pattern of this receptor and its dependent MAIs after SCI. Altogether, experimental studies suggest potential benefits of combating EAAs, inflammatory

  8. Neurotrophic factors and receptors in the immature and adult spinal cord after mechanical injury or kainic acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widenfalk, J; Lundströmer, K; Jubran, M; Brene, S; Olson, L

    2001-05-15

    Delivery of neurotrophic factors to the injured spinal cord has been shown to stimulate neuronal survival and regeneration. This indicates that a lack of sufficient trophic support is one factor contributing to the absence of spontaneous regeneration in the mammalian spinal cord. Regulation of the expression of neurotrophic factors and receptors after spinal cord injury has not been studied in detail. We investigated levels of mRNA-encoding neurotrophins, glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) family members and related receptors, ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF), and c-fos in normal and injured spinal cord. Injuries in adult rats included weight-drop, transection, and excitotoxic kainic acid delivery; in newborn rats, partial transection was performed. The regulation of expression patterns in the adult spinal cord was compared with that in the PNS and the neonate spinal cord. After mechanical injury of the adult rat spinal cord, upregulations of NGF and GDNF mRNA occurred in meningeal cells adjacent to the lesion. BDNF and p75 mRNA increased in neurons, GDNF mRNA increased in astrocytes close to the lesion, and GFRalpha-1 and truncated TrkB mRNA increased in astrocytes of degenerating white matter. The relatively limited upregulation of neurotrophic factors in the spinal cord contrasted with the response of affected nerve roots, in which marked increases of NGF and GDNF mRNA levels were observed in Schwann cells. The difference between the ability of the PNS and CNS to provide trophic support correlates with their different abilities to regenerate. Kainic acid delivery led to only weak upregulations of BDNF and CNTF mRNA. Compared with several brain regions, the overall response of the spinal cord tissue to kainic acid was weak. The relative sparseness of upregulations of endogenous neurotrophic factors after injury strengthens the hypothesis that lack of regeneration in the spinal cord is attributable at least partly to lack of trophic support.

  9. 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.)

  10. Upregulation of CB2 receptors in reactive astrocytes in canine degenerative myelopathy, a disease model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Trapero, María; Espejo-Porras, Francisco; Rodríguez-Cueto, Carmen; Coates, Joan R.; Pérez-Díaz, Carmen; de Lago, Eva; Fernández-Ruiz, Javier

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Targeting of the CB2 receptor results in neuroprotection in the SOD1G93A mutant mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The neuroprotective effects of CB2 receptors are facilitated by their upregulation in the spinal cord of the mutant mice. Here, we investigated whether similar CB2 receptor upregulation, as well as parallel changes in other endocannabinoid elements, is evident in the spinal cord of dogs with degenerative myelopathy (DM), caused by mutations in the superoxide dismutase 1 gene (SOD1). We used well-characterized post-mortem spinal cords from unaffected and DM-affected dogs. Tissues were used first to confirm the loss of motor neurons using Nissl staining, which was accompanied by glial reactivity (elevated GFAP and Iba-1 immunoreactivity). Next, we investigated possible differences in the expression of endocannabinoid genes measured by qPCR between DM-affected and control dogs. We found no changes in expression of the CB1 receptor (confirmed with CB1 receptor immunostaining) or NAPE-PLD, DAGL, FAAH and MAGL enzymes. In contrast, CB2 receptor levels were significantly elevated in DM-affected dogs determined by qPCR and western blotting, which was confirmed in the grey matter using CB2 receptor immunostaining. Using double-labelling immunofluorescence, CB2 receptor immunolabelling colocalized with GFAP but not Iba-1, indicating upregulation of CB2 receptors on astrocytes in DM-affected dogs. Our results demonstrate a marked upregulation of CB2 receptors in the spinal cord in canine DM, which is concentrated in activated astrocytes. Such receptors could be used as a potential target to enhance the neuroprotective effects exerted by these glial cells. PMID:28069688

  11. Upregulation of CB2 receptors in reactive astrocytes in canine degenerative myelopathy, a disease model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Fernández-Trapero

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Targeting of the CB2 receptor results in neuroprotection in the SOD1G93A mutant mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS. The neuroprotective effects of CB2 receptors are facilitated by their upregulation in the spinal cord of the mutant mice. Here, we investigated whether similar CB2 receptor upregulation, as well as parallel changes in other endocannabinoid elements, is evident in the spinal cord of dogs with degenerative myelopathy (DM, caused by mutations in the superoxide dismutase 1 gene (SOD1. We used well-characterized post-mortem spinal cords from unaffected and DM-affected dogs. Tissues were used first to confirm the loss of motor neurons using Nissl staining, which was accompanied by glial reactivity (elevated GFAP and Iba-1 immunoreactivity. Next, we investigated possible differences in the expression of endocannabinoid genes measured by qPCR between DM-affected and control dogs. We found no changes in expression of the CB1 receptor (confirmed with CB1 receptor immunostaining or NAPE-PLD, DAGL, FAAH and MAGL enzymes. In contrast, CB2 receptor levels were significantly elevated in DM-affected dogs determined by qPCR and western blotting, which was confirmed in the grey matter using CB2 receptor immunostaining. Using double-labelling immunofluorescence, CB2 receptor immunolabelling colocalized with GFAP but not Iba-1, indicating upregulation of CB2 receptors on astrocytes in DM-affected dogs. Our results demonstrate a marked upregulation of CB2 receptors in the spinal cord in canine DM, which is concentrated in activated astrocytes. Such receptors could be used as a potential target to enhance the neuroprotective effects exerted by these glial cells.

  12. Apolipoprotein E in umbilical cord blood plasma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Forte, T.M.; Davis, P.A.; Blum, C.B.

    1983-01-01

    Adolipoprotein E (apo E), with a molecular weight of approximately 37,000 daltons, is a minor apolipoprotein constituent in adult plasma lipoproteins. This apolipoprotein, like apolipoprotein B, is a ligand recognized by specific lipoprotein receptor sites (B-E receptors) on cell surfaces. We have recently shown that a pronounced apo E band appears in umbilical cord blood low-density (LDL) lipoproteins and also in high density (HDL) lipoproteins. Densitometric scans of Coomassie blue G-250 stained polyacrylamide gels suggested that apo E was probably elevated in cord blood lipoproteins. To pursue this suggestion, apo E in cord blood was quantitated by radioimmunoassay and correlated with cord blood lipid levels. In addition, apo E levels in 20 normal adult volunteers were also examined

  13. Mitochondrial dysfunction and loss of glutamate uptake in primary astrocytes exposed to titanium dioxide nanoparticles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Christina L.; Natarajan, Vaishaali; Hayward, Stephen L.; Khalimonchuk, Oleh; Kidambi, Srivatsan

    2015-11-01

    Titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles are currently the second most produced engineered nanomaterial in the world with vast usage in consumer products leading to recurrent human exposure. Animal studies indicate significant nanoparticle accumulation in the brain while cellular toxicity studies demonstrate negative effects on neuronal cell viability and function. However, the toxicological effects of nanoparticles on astrocytes, the most abundant cells in the brain, have not been extensively investigated. Therefore, we determined the sub-toxic effect of three different TiO2 nanoparticles (rutile, anatase and commercially available P25 TiO2 nanoparticles) on primary rat cortical astrocytes. We evaluated some events related to astrocyte functions and mitochondrial dysregulation: (1) glutamate uptake; (2) redox signaling mechanisms by measuring ROS production; (3) the expression patterns of dynamin-related proteins (DRPs) and mitofusins 1 and 2, whose expression is central to mitochondrial dynamics; and (4) mitochondrial morphology by MitoTracker® Red CMXRos staining. Anatase, rutile and P25 were found to have LC50 values of 88.22 +/- 10.56 ppm, 136.0 +/- 31.73 ppm and 62.37 +/- 9.06 ppm respectively indicating nanoparticle specific toxicity. All three TiO2 nanoparticles induced a significant loss in glutamate uptake indicative of a loss in vital astrocyte function. TiO2 nanoparticles also induced an increase in reactive oxygen species generation, and a decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential, suggesting mitochondrial damage. TiO2 nanoparticle exposure altered expression patterns of DRPs at low concentrations (25 ppm) and apoptotic fission at high concentrations (100 ppm). TiO2 nanoparticle exposure also resulted in changes to mitochondrial morphology confirmed by mitochondrial staining. Collectively, our data provide compelling evidence that TiO2 nanoparticle exposure has potential implications in astrocyte-mediated neurological dysfunction.Titanium dioxide (Ti

  14. 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

  15. Is there in vivo evidence for amino acid shuttles carrying ammonia from neurons to astrocytes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothman, Douglas L; De Feyter, Henk M; Maciejewski, Paul K; Behar, Kevin L

    2012-11-01

    The high in vivo flux of the glutamate/glutamine cycle puts a strong demand on the return of ammonia released by phosphate activated glutaminase from the neurons to the astrocytes in order to maintain nitrogen balance. In this paper we review several amino acid shuttles that have been proposed for balancing the nitrogen flows between neurons and astrocytes in the glutamate/glutamine cycle. All of these cycles depend on the directionality of glutamate dehydrogenase, catalyzing reductive glutamate synthesis (forward reaction) in the neuron in order to capture the ammonia released by phosphate activated glutaminase, while catalyzing oxidative deamination of glutamate (reverse reaction) in the astrocytes to release ammonia for glutamine synthesis. Reanalysis of results from in vivo experiments using (13)N and (15)N labeled ammonia and (15)N leucine in rats suggests that the maximum flux of the alanine/lactate or branched chain amino acid/branched chain amino acid transaminase shuttles between neurons and astrocytes are approximately 3-5 times lower than would be required to account for the ammonia transfer from neurons to astrocytes needed for glutamine synthesis (amide nitrogen) to sustain the glutamate/glutamine cycle. However, in the rat brain both the total ammonia fixation rate by glutamate dehydrogenase and the total branched chain amino acid transaminase activity are sufficient to support a branched chain amino acid/branched chain keto acid shuttle, as proposed by Hutson and coworkers, which would support the de novo synthesis of glutamine in the astrocyte to replace the ~20 % of neurotransmitter glutamate that is oxidized. A higher fraction of the nitrogen needs of total glutamate neurotransmitter cycling could be supported by hybrid cycles in which glutamate and tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates act as a nitrogen shuttle. A limitation of all in vivo studies in animals conducted to date is that none have shown transfer of nitrogen for glutamine amide

  16. Diffusion tensor imaging in spinal cord injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kamble, Ravindra B; Venkataramana, Neelam K; Naik, Arun L; Rao, Shailesh V

    2011-01-01

    To assess the feasibility of spinal tractography in patients of spinal cord injury vs a control group and to compare fractional anisotropy (FA) values between the groups. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) was performed in the spinal cord of 29 patients (18 patients and 11 controls). DTI was done in the cervical region if the cord injury was at the dorsal or lumbar region and in the conus region if cord injury was in the cervical or dorsal region. FA was calculated for the patients and the controls and the values were compared. The mean FA value was 0.550±0.09 in the control group and 0.367±0.14 in the patients; this difference was statistically significant (P=0.001). Spinal tractography is a feasible technique to assess the extent of spinal cord injury by FA, which is reduced in patients of spinal cord injury, suggesting possible Wallerian degeneration. In future, this technique may become a useful tool for assessing cord injury patients after stem cell therapy, with improvement in FA values indicating axonal regeneration

  17. Leptin regulates glutamate and glucose transporters in hypothalamic astrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuente-Martín, Esther; García-Cáceres, Cristina; Granado, Miriam; de Ceballos, María L.; Sánchez-Garrido, Miguel Ángel; Sarman, Beatrix; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Dietrich, Marcelo O.; Tena-Sempere, Manuel; Argente-Arizón, Pilar; Díaz, Francisca; Argente, Jesús; Horvath, Tamas L.; Chowen, Julie A.

    2012-01-01

    Glial cells perform critical functions that alter the metabolism and activity of neurons, and there is increasing interest in their role in appetite and energy balance. Leptin, a key regulator of appetite and metabolism, has previously been reported to influence glial structural proteins and morphology. Here, we demonstrate that metabolic status and leptin also modify astrocyte-specific glutamate and glucose transporters, indicating that metabolic signals influence synaptic efficacy and glucose uptake and, ultimately, neuronal function. We found that basal and glucose-stimulated electrical activity of hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in mice were altered in the offspring of mothers fed a high-fat diet. In adulthood, increased body weight and fasting also altered the expression of glucose and glutamate transporters. These results demonstrate that whole-organism metabolism alters hypothalamic glial cell activity and suggest that these cells play an important role in the pathology of obesity. PMID:23064363

  18. Hyperinducibility of Ia antigen on astrocytes correlates with strain-specific susceptibility to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Massa, P.T.; ter Meulen, V.; Fontana, A.

    1987-01-01

    In search of a phenotypic marker determining genetically controlled susceptibility to delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) reactions in the brain-in particular, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE)- the authors have compared the γ-interferon (IFN-γ) induction of Ia molecules on astrocytes and macrophages from rat and mouse strains that are susceptible or resistant to this disease. They focused on Ia expression because DTH reactions to self or foreign antigens are largely mediated by lymphocytes restricted by class II (Ia) antigens of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). The data demonstrate that Lewis (fully susceptible) and Brown Norway (BN) (fully resistant) rats are very different in that Lewis astrocytes express much higher levels of Ia than BN astrocytes. Similar data were obtained from an analysis of EAE-susceptible and -resistant mouse strains (SJL and BALB/c, respectively), which suggest that this phenomenon may be universal and not limited to only one mammalian species. At least one gene responsible for Ia hyperinduction is located outside the rat RT-1 or the mouse MHC locus. Animals congenic at the RT-1 or MHC locus of the resistant strain but with background genes of the susceptible strain exhibit intermediate levels of Ia compared to fully resistant and susceptible rodents, which fits well with the reduced EAE susceptibility of these congenic animals. Furthermore, hyperinduction of Ia is astrocyte specific, since peritoneal macrophages of susceptible and resistant strains exhibit identical profiles of Ia induction. Thus, astrocyte Ia hyperinducibility may be a major strain- and tissue-specific factor that contributes to Ia-restricted DTH reactions in the brain

  19. Fatty acid-induced astrocyte ketone production and the control of food intake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Foll, Christelle; Levin, Barry E

    2016-06-01

    Obesity and Type 2 diabetes are major worldwide public health issues today. A relationship between total fat intake and obesity has been found. In addition, the mechanisms of long-term and excessive high-fat diet (HFD) intake in the development of obesity still need to be elucidated. The ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) is a major site involved in the regulation of glucose and energy homeostasis where "metabolic sensing neurons" integrate metabolic signals from the periphery. Among these signals, fatty acids (FA) modulate the activity of VMH neurons using the FA translocator/CD36, which plays a critical role in the regulation of energy and glucose homeostasis. During low-fat diet (LFD) intake, FA are oxidized by VMH astrocytes to fuel their ongoing metabolic needs. However, HFD intake causes VMH astrocytes to use FA to generate ketone bodies. We postulate that these astrocyte-derived ketone bodies are exported to neurons where they produce excess ATP and reactive oxygen species, which override CD36-mediated FA sensing and act as a signal to decrease short-term food intake. On a HFD, VMH astrocyte-produced ketones reduce elevated caloric intake to LFD levels after 3 days in rats genetically predisposed to resist (DR) diet-induced obesity (DIO), but not leptin-resistant DIO rats. This suggests that, while VMH ketone production on a HFD can contribute to protection from obesity, the inherent leptin resistance overrides this inhibitory action of ketone bodies on food intake. Thus, astrocytes and neurons form a tight metabolic unit that is able to monitor circulating nutrients to alter food intake and energy homeostasis. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  20. Gene expression deficits in pontine locus coeruleus astrocytes in men with major depressive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandley, Michelle J; Szebeni, Katalin; Szebeni, Attila; Crawford, Jessica; Stockmeier, Craig A; Turecki, Gustavo; Miguel-Hidalgo, Jose Javier; Ordway, Gregory A

    2013-07-01

    Norepinephrine and glutamate are among several neurotransmitters implicated in the neuropathology of major depressive disorder (MDD). Glia deficits have also been demonstrated in people with MDD, and glia are critical modulators of central glutamatergic transmission. We studied glia in men with MDD in the region of the brain (locus coeruleus; LC) where noradrenergic neuronal cell bodies reside and receive glutamatergic input. The expression of 3 glutamate-related genes (SLC1A3, SLC1A2, GLUL) concentrated in glia and a glia gene (GFAP) were measured in postmortem tissues from men with MDD and from paired psychiatrically healthy controls. Initial gene expression analysis of RNA isolated from homogenized tissue (n = 9-10 pairs) containing the LC were followed by detailed analysis of gene expressions in astrocytes and oligodendrocytes (n = 6-7 pairs) laser captured from the LC region. We assessed protein changes in GFAP using immunohistochemistry and immunoblotting (n = 7-14 pairs). Astrocytes, but not oligodendrocytes, demonstrated robust reductions in the expression of SLC1A3 and SLC1A2, whereas GLUL expression was unchanged. GFAP expression was lower in astrocytes, and we confirmed reduced GFAP protein in the LC using immunostaining methods. Reduced expression of protein products of SLC1A3 and SLC1A2 could not be confirmed because of insufficient amounts of LC tissue for these assays. Whether gene expression abnormalities were associated with only MDD and not with suicide could not be confirmed because most of the decedents who had MDD died by suicide. Major depressive disorder is associated with unhealthy astrocytes in the noradrenergic LC, characterized here by a reduction in astrocyte glutamate transporter expression. These findings suggest that increased glutamatergic activity in the LC occurs in men with MDD.

  1. Hippocalcin Is Required for Astrocytic Differentiation through Activation of Stat3 in Hippocampal Neural Precursor Cells.

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    Min-Jeong Kang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Hippocalcin (Hpca is a neuronal calcium sensor protein expressed in the mammalian brain. However, its function in neural stem/precursor cells has not yet been studied. Here, we clarify the function of Hpca in astrocytic differentiation in hippocampal neural precursor cells (HNPCs. When we overexpressed Hpca in HNPCs in the presence or absence of bFGF, expression levels of nerve-growth factors such as neurotrophin-3 (NT-3, neurotrophin-4/5 (NT-4/5 and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, together with the proneural basic helix loop helix (bHLH transcription factors neuroD and neurogenin 1 (ngn1, increased significantly. In addition, there was an increase in the number of cells expressing glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP, an astrocyte marker, and in dendrite outgrowth, indicating astrocytic differentiation of the HNPCs. Downregulation of Hpca by transfection with Hpca siRNA reduced expression of NT-3, NT-4/5, BDNF, neuroD and ngn1 as well as levels of GFAP protein. Furthermore, overexpression of Hpca increased the phosphorylation of STAT3 (Ser727, and this effect was abolished by treatment with a STAT3 inhibitor (S3I-201, suggesting that STAT3 (Ser727 activation is involved in Hpca-mediated astrocytic differentiation. As expected, treatment with Stat3 siRNA or STAT3 inhibitor caused a complete inhibition of astrogliogenesis induced by Hpca overexpression. Taken together, this is the first report to show that Hpca, acting through Stat3, has an important role in the expression of neurotrophins and proneural bHLH transcription factors, and that it is an essential regulator of astrocytic differentiation and dendrite outgrowth in HNPCs.

  2. Neuroprotective and Ameliorating Impacts of Omega-3 Against Aspartame-induced Neuronal and Astrocytic Degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ali, Eyad M T; Sonpol, Hany M A

    2017-07-01

    Aspartame (ASP) is one of the commonest artificial sweetener used all over the world and considered as an extremely risky compound and raises a lot of controversy. Therefore, this study was designed to investigate cellular damage of the anterior horn cells in the spinal cord of albino male rats and the possibility of hindering these changes by using omega-3 (OM3).Thirty seven adult male albino rats were divided into three groups: Control, ASP-treated and ASP + OM3-treated groups. Spinal cord sections were prepared and stained with Hx&E, caspase-3 and GFAP immunostaining. All data were morphometrically and statistically analyzed. In ASP-treated group, the cell body of some degenerated neurons was swollen and its cytoplasm was vacuolated. Their nuclei were eccentric and pyknotic. Moreover, other neurons were of a heterogeneous pattern in the form of cell body shrinkage, loss of Nissl substance, intensely stained eosinophilic cytoplasm and a small darkly stained nucleus that may eventually fragment. However, the cells were apparently normal in ASP+ OM3-treated group. Strong +ve caspase-3 stained neurons were detected in ASP-treated group. Furthermore, the immunoreaction was faint on treating the rats with both ASP and OM3. Few number of +ve GFAP- stained astrocytes were observed in ASP-treated rats. On the other hand, the immunoreactivity for GFAP was found to be intense in the ASP + OM3-treated group. Additionally, there was a significant decrease in the surface area percentage of the +ve GFAP-stained astrocytes of the ASP-treated group compared to the control and the ASP + OM3-treated groups. Anat Rec, 300:1290-1298, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Microglia P2Y13 Receptors Prevent Astrocyte Proliferation Mediated by P2Y1 Receptors

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    Clara Quintas

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Cerebral inflammation is a common feature of several neurodegenerative diseases that requires a fine interplay between astrocytes and microglia to acquire appropriate phenotypes for an efficient response to neuronal damage. During brain inflammation, ATP is massively released into the extracellular medium and converted into ADP. Both nucleotides acting on P2 receptors, modulate astrogliosis through mechanisms involving microglia-astrocytes communication. In previous studies, primary cultures of astrocytes and co-cultures of astrocytes and microglia were used to investigate the influence of microglia on astroglial proliferation induced by ADPβS, a stable ADP analog. In astrocyte cultures, ADPβS increased cell proliferation through activation of P2Y1 and P2Y12 receptors, an effect abolished in co-cultures (of astrocytes with ∼12.5% microglia. The possibility that the loss of the ADPβS-mediated effect could have been caused by a microglia-induced degradation of ADPβS or by a preferential microglial localization of P2Y1 or P2Y12 receptors was excluded. Since ADPβS also activates P2Y13 receptors, the contribution of microglial P2Y13 receptors to prevent the proliferative effect of ADPβS in co-cultures was investigated. The results obtained indicate that P2Y13 receptors are low expressed in astrocytes and mainly expressed in microglia. Furthermore, in co-cultures, ADPβS induced astroglial proliferation in the presence of the selective P2Y13 antagonist MRS 2211 (3 μM and of the selective P2Y12 antagonist AR-C66096 (0.1 μM, suggesting that activation of microglial P2Y12 and P2Y13 receptors may induce the release of messengers that inhibit astroglial proliferation mediated by P2Y1,12 receptors. In this microglia-astrocyte paracrine communication, P2Y12 receptors exert opposite effects in astroglial proliferation as a result of its cellular localization: cooperating in astrocytes with P2Y1 receptors to directly stimulate proliferation and in

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    Full Text Available ... Disabilities Photography by Rona Talcott Website by Mobile Marketing LLC Understanding Spinal Cord Injury About ... Your email address * This iframe contains the logic required to ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  8. Astrocyte-secreted factors modulate a gradient of primary dendritic arbors in nucleus laminaris of the avian auditory brainstem.

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    Matthew J Korn

    Full Text Available Neurons in nucleus laminaris (NL receive binaural, tonotopically matched input from nucleus magnocelluaris (NM onto bitufted dendrites that display a gradient of dendritic arbor size. These features improve computation of interaural time differences, which are used to determine the locations of sound sources. The dendritic gradient emerges following a period of significant reorganization at embryonic day 15 (E15, which coincides with the emergence of astrocytes that express glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP in the auditory brainstem. The major changes include a loss of total dendritic length, a systematic loss of primary dendrites along the tonotopic axis, and lengthening of primary dendrites on caudolateral NL neurons. Here we have tested whether astrocyte-derived molecules contribute to these changes in dendritic morphology. We used an organotypic brainstem slice preparation to perform repeated imaging of individual dye-filled NL neurons to determine the effects of astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM on dendritic morphology. We found that treatment with ACM induced a decrease in the number of primary dendrites in a tonotopically graded manner similar to that observed during normal development. Our data introduce a new interaction between astrocytes and neurons in the auditory brainstem and suggest that these astrocytes influence multiple aspects of auditory brainstem maturation.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Evidence for involvement of the astrocytic benzodiazepine receptor in the mechanism of action of convulsant and anticonvulsant drugs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bender, A.S.; Hertz, L.

    1988-01-01

    The anticonvulsant drugs carbamazepine, phenobarbital, trimethadione, valproic acid and ethosuximide at pharmacologically relevant concentrations inhibit [ 3 H]diazepam binding to astrocytes in primary cultures but have much less effect on a corresponding preparation of neurons. Phenytoin as well as pentobarbital (which is not used chronically as an anticonvulsant) are equipotent in the two cell types. The convulsants picrotoxinin and pentylenetetrazol, the convulsant benzodiazepine RO 5-3663 and the two convulsant barbiturates DMBB and CHEB similarly inhibit diazepam binding to astrocytes but have little effect on neurons. On the basis of these findings it is suggested that these convulsants and anticonvulsants owe at least part of their effect to an interaction with the astrocytic benzodiazepine receptor, perhaps by interference with a calcium channel

  15. Genistein inhibited ammonia induced astrocyte swelling by inhibiting NF-κB activation-mediated nitric oxide formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Hongliang; Jia, Guizhi; Wang, Wei; Liang, Chunguang; Han, Siyu; Chu, Minghui; Mei, Xifan

    2017-06-01

    Our previous study has indicated the involvement of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) transactivation in ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling, which represents a major pathogenesis of brain edema in hepatic encephalopathy. In this study, we examined the effect of genistein, a naturally occurred broad-spectrum protein tyrosine kinase (PTK) inhibitor, on ammonia-induced cell swelling. We found that genistein pretreatment significantly prevented ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling. Mechanistically, ammonia triggered EGFR/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) association and subsequent ERK phosphorylation were alleviated by genistein pretreatment. Moreover, ammonia-induced NF-κB nuclear location, iNOS expression, and consequent NO production were all prevented by AG1478 and genistein pretreatment. This study suggested that genistein could alleviate ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling, which may be, at least partly, related to its PTK-inhibiting activity and repression of NF-κB mediated iNOS-derived NO accumulation.

  16. Imaging of Spinal Cord Injury: Acute Cervical Spinal Cord Injury, Cervical Spondylotic Myelopathy, and Cord Herniation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talekar, Kiran; Poplawski, Michael; Hegde, Rahul; Cox, Mougnyan; Flanders, Adam

    2016-10-01

    We review the pathophysiology and imaging findings of acute traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI), cervical spondylotic myelopathy, and briefly review the much less common cord herniation as a unique cause of myelopathy. Acute traumatic SCI is devastating to the patient and the costs to society are staggering. There are currently no "cures" for SCI and the only accepted pharmacologic treatment regimen for traumatic SCI is currently being questioned. Evaluation and prognostication of SCI is a demanding area with significant deficiencies, including lack of biomarkers. Accurate classification of SCI is heavily dependent on a good clinical examination, the results of which can vary substantially based upon the patient׳s condition or comorbidities and the skills of the examiner. Moreover, the full extent of a patients׳ neurologic injury may not become apparent for days after injury; by then, therapeutic response may be limited. Although magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the best imaging modality for the evaluation of spinal cord parenchyma, conventional MR techniques do not appear to differentiate edema from axonal injury. Recently, it is proposed that in addition to characterizing the anatomic extent of injury, metrics derived from conventional MRI and diffusion tensor imaging, in conjunction with the neurological examination, can serve as a reliable objective biomarker for determination of the extent of neurologic injury and early identification of patients who would benefit from treatment. Cervical spondylosis is a common disorder affecting predominantly the elderly with a potential to narrow the spinal canal and thereby impinge or compress upon the neural elements leading to cervical spondylotic myelopathy and radiculopathy. It is the commonest nontraumatic cause of spinal cord disorder in adults. Imaging plays an important role in grading the severity of spondylosis and detecting cord abnormalities suggesting myelopathy. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights

  17. Dietary fish oil, and to a lesser extent the fat-1 transgene, increases astrocyte activation in response to intracerebroventricular amyloid-β 1-40 in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopperton, Kathryn E; James, Nicholas C E; Mohammad, Dana; Irfan, Maha; Bazinet, Richard P

    2017-11-07

    Increases in astrocytes and one of their markers, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) have been reported in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). N-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) modulate neuroinflammation in animal models; however, their effect on astrocytes is unclear. Fat-1 mice and their wildtype littermates were fed either a fish oil diet or a safflower oil diet deprived of n-3 PUFA. At 12 weeks, mice underwent intracerebroventricular infusion of amyloid-β 1-40. Astrocyte phenotype in the hippocampus was assessed at baseline and 10 days post-surgery using immunohistochemistry with various microscopy and image analysis techniques. GFAP increased in all groups in response to amyloid-β, with a greater increase in fish oil-fed mice than either fat-1 or wildtype safflower oil-fed mice. Astrocytes in this group were also more hypertrophic, suggesting increased activation. Both fat-1- and fish oil-fed mice had greater increases in branch number and length in response to amyloid-β infusion than wildtype safflower animals. Fish oil feeding, and to a lesser extent the fat-1 transgene, enhances the astrocyte activation phenotype in response to amyloid-β 1-40. Astrocytes in mice fed fish oil were more activated in response to amyloid-β than in fat-1 mice despite similar levels of hippocampal n-3 PUFA, which suggests that other fatty acids or dietary factors contribute to this effect.

  18. 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

  19. Thyroid hormone action: Astrocyte-neuron communication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  20. Acute and chronic glucocorticoid treatments regulate astrocyte-enriched mRNAs in multiple brain regions in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bradley S. Carter

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have primarily interpreted gene expression regulation by glucocorticoids in the brain in terms of impact on neurons; however, less is known about the corresponding impact of glucocorticoids on glia and specifically astrocytes in vivo. Recent microarray experiments have identified glucocorticoid-sensitive mRNAs in primary astrocyte cell culture, including a number of mRNAs that have reported astrocyte-enriched expression patterns relative to other brain cell types. Here, we have tested whether elevations of glucocorticoids regulate a subset of these mRNAs in vivo following acute and chronic corticosterone exposure in adult mice. Acute corticosterone exposure was achieved by a single injection of 10 mg/kg corticosterone, and tissue samples were harvested two hours post-injection. Chronic corticosterone exposure was achieved by administering 10 mg/mL corticosterone via drinking water for two weeks. Gene expression was then assessed in two brain regions associated with glucocorticoid action (prefrontal cortex and hippocampus by qPCR and by in situ hybridization. The majority of measured mRNAs regulated by glucocorticoids in astrocytes in vitro were similarly regulated by acute and/or chronic glucocorticoid exposure in vivo. In addition, the expression levels for mRNAs regulated in at least one corticosterone exposure condition (acute/chronic demonstrated moderate positive correlation between the two conditions by brain region. In situ hybridization analyses suggest that select mRNAs are regulated by chronic corticosterone exposure specifically in astroctyes based on (1 similar general expression patterns between corticosterone-treated and vehicle-treated animals and (2 similar expression patterns to the pan-astrocyte marker Aldh1l1. Our findings demonstrate that glucocorticoids regulate astrocyte-enriched mRNAs in vivo and suggest that glucocorticoids regulate gene expression in the brain in a cell type-dependent fashion.

  1. The role of radiotherapy in the management of spinal cord glioma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shirato, Hiroki; Kamada, Tadashi; Hida, Kazutoshi; Koyanagi, Izumi; Iwasaki, Yoshinobu; Miyasaka, Kazuo; Abe, Hiroshi

    1995-01-01

    Purpose: To determine the role of radiotherapy in the management of spinal cord gliomas. Methods and Materials: Thirty-six patients with spinal cord glioma treated between 1979 and 1993 were examined. The patients had 13 astrocytic tumors (7 astrocytomas, 4 anaplastic astrocytomas, 2 glioblastomas), 22 ependymal tumors (18 ependymomas, 4 myxopapillary ependymomas), and 1 unclassified glioma. Fifteen of the patients were treated by surgery alone, but the remaining 21 patients also received postoperative radiotherapy. Total resection was performed on 1 astrocytoma and 13 ependymomas. In general, 40-50 Gy/16-20 fractions/4-5 weeks were given after parital resection, but no radiotherapy was given after total resection. Results: Actuarial survival was significantly better for patients with ependymal tumors than for those with astrocytic tumors (p = 0007), 5-year actuarial survival rates being 96% and 50% for patients with ependymal tumors and astrocytic tumors, respectively. For patients with ependymal tumors, there was no difference in motor function and survival between those with total resection and those with partial resection followed by radiotherapy. Actuarial 3-year survival was 80% for patients with astrocytomas and 40% for those with anaplastic astrocytomas plus glioblastomas. The difference in the degree of motor function between the patients treated with radiotherapy and those without radiotherapy was not statistically significant. One anaplastic astrocytoma and one glioblastoma patient have lived longer than 4 years after radical treatment including radiocordectomy, or irradiation using doses larger than the tolerance threshold of the spinal cord. Conclusion: Postoperative conventional radiotherapy is indicated after less than total resection of low-grade ependymal tumors and astrocytomas but not after total resection of ependymomas. Radiocordectomy may be an option for certain cases with high-grade astrocytic tumors

  2. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... spinal cord injuries? play_arrow What is “Braingate” research? play_arrow How would stem-cell therapies work ... cord injuries? play_arrow What does stem-cell research on animals tell us? play_arrow When can ...

  3. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Cord Injury Allen Heinemann, PhD How Peer Counseling Works Julie Gassaway, MS, RN Pediatric Injuries Pediatric Spinal ... injury? play_arrow How does the spinal cord work? play_arrow Why is the level of a ...

  4. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... arrow What are the latest developments in the use of electrical stimulation for spinal cord injuries? play_arrow What is “Braingate” research? play_arrow How would stem-cell therapies work in the treatment of spinal cord ...

  5. Spinal Cord Injury 101

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Spinal Cord Injury Guy W. Fried, MD Substance Abuse and Spinal Cord Injury Allen Heinemann, PhD How ... arrow Why are high-dose steroids often used right after an injury? play_arrow What is meant ...

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. SLAM- and nectin-4-independent noncytolytic spread of canine distemper virus in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Lisa; Khosravi, Mojtaba; Avila, Mislay; Ader-Ebert, Nadine; Bringolf, Fanny; Zurbriggen, Andreas; Vandevelde, Marc; Plattet, Philippe

    2015-05-01

    Measles and canine distemper viruses (MeV and CDV, respectively) first replicate in lymphatic and epithelial tissues by using SLAM and nectin-4 as entry receptors, respectively. The viruses may also invade the brain to establish persistent infections, triggering fatal complications, such as subacute sclerosis pan-encephalitis (SSPE) in MeV infection or chronic, multiple sclerosis-like, multifocal demyelinating lesions in the case of CDV infection. In both diseases, persistence is mediated by viral nucleocapsids that do not require packaging into particles for infectivity but are directly transmitted from cell to cell (neurons in SSPE or astrocytes in distemper encephalitis), presumably by relying on restricted microfusion events. Indeed, although morphological evidence of fusion remained undetectable, viral fusion machineries and, thus, a putative cellular receptor, were shown to contribute to persistent infections. Here, we first showed that nectin-4-dependent cell-cell fusion in Vero cells, triggered by a demyelinating CDV strain, remained extremely limited, thereby supporting a potential role of nectin-4 in mediating persistent infections in astrocytes. However, nectin-4 could not be detected in either primary cultured astrocytes or the white matter of tissue sections. In addition, a bioengineered "nectin-4-blind" recombinant CDV retained full cell-to-cell transmission efficacy in primary astrocytes. Combined with our previous report demonstrating the absence of SLAM expression in astrocytes, these findings are suggestive for the existence of a hitherto unrecognized third CDV receptor expressed by glial cells that contributes to the induction of noncytolytic cell-to-cell viral transmission in astrocytes. While persistent measles virus (MeV) infection induces SSPE in humans, persistent canine distemper virus (CDV) infection causes chronic progressive or relapsing demyelination in carnivores. Common to both central nervous system (CNS) infections is that

  10. Astrocytic TYMP and VEGFA drive blood-brain barrier opening in inflammatory central nervous system lesions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapouly, Candice; Tadesse Argaw, Azeb; Horng, Sam; Castro, Kamilah; Zhang, Jingya; Asp, Linnea; Loo, Hannah; Laitman, Benjamin M; Mariani, John N; Straus Farber, Rebecca; Zaslavsky, Elena; Nudelman, German; Raine, Cedric S; John, Gareth R

    2015-06-01

    In inflammatory central nervous system conditions such as multiple sclerosis, breakdown of the blood-brain barrier is a key event in lesion pathogenesis, predisposing to oedema, excitotoxicity, and ingress of plasma proteins and inflammatory cells. Recently, we showed that reactive astrocytes drive blood-brain barrier opening, via production of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA). Here, we now identify thymidine phosphorylase (TYMP; previously known as endothelial cell growth factor 1, ECGF1) as a second key astrocyte-derived permeability factor, which interacts with VEGFA to induce blood-brain barrier disruption. The two are co-induced NFκB1-dependently in human astrocytes by the cytokine interleukin 1 beta (IL1B), and inactivation of Vegfa in vivo potentiates TYMP induction. In human central nervous system microvascular endothelial cells, VEGFA and the TYMP product 2-deoxy-d-ribose cooperatively repress tight junction proteins, driving permeability. Notably, this response represents part of a wider pattern of endothelial plasticity: 2-deoxy-d-ribose and VEGFA produce transcriptional programs encompassing angiogenic and permeability genes, and together regulate a third unique cohort. Functionally, each promotes proliferation and viability, and they cooperatively drive motility and angiogenesis. Importantly, introduction of either into mouse cortex promotes blood-brain barrier breakdown, and together they induce severe barrier disruption. In the multiple sclerosis model experimental autoimmune encephalitis, TYMP and VEGFA co-localize to reactive astrocytes, and correlate with blood-brain barrier permeability. Critically, blockade of either reduces neurologic deficit, blood-brain barrier disruption and pathology, and inhibiting both in combination enhances tissue preservation. Suggesting importance in human disease, TYMP and VEGFA both localize to reactive astrocytes in multiple sclerosis lesion samples. Collectively, these data identify TYMP as an

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Brain protection by methylprednisolone in rats with spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chia-Mao; Lee, Ming-Hsueh; Wang, Ting-Chung; Weng, Hsu-Huei; Chung, Chiu-Yen; Yang, Jen-Tsung

    2009-07-01

    Traumatic spinal cord injury is clinically treated by high doses of methylprednisolone. However, the effect of methylprednisolone on the brain in spinal cord injury patients has been little investigated. This experimental study examined Bcl-2 and Bax protein expression and Nissl staining to evaluate an apoptosis-related intracellular signaling event and final neuron death, respectively. Spinal cord injury produced a significant apoptotic change and cell death not only in the spinal cord but also in the supraventricular cortex and hippocampal cornu ammonis 1 region in the rat brains. The treatment of methylprednisolone increased the Bcl-2/Bax ratio and prevented neuron death for 1-7 days after spinal cord injury. These findings suggest that rats with spinal cord injury show ascending brain injury that could be restricted through methylprednisolone management.

  16. Lactate release from astrocytes to neurons contributes to cocaine memory formation

    KAUST Repository

    Boury-Jamot, Benjamin; Halfon, Olivier; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Boutrel, Benjamin

    2016-01-01

    The identification of neural substrates underlying the long lasting debilitating impact of drug cues is critical for developing novel therapeutic tools. Metabolic coupling has long been considered a key mechanism through which astrocytes and neurons actively interact in response of neuronal activity, but recent findings suggested that disrupting metabolic coupling may represent an innovative approach to prevent memory formation, in particular drug-related memories. Here, we review converging evidence illustrating how memory and addiction share neural circuitry and molecular mechanisms implicating lactate-mediated metabolic coupling between astrocytes and neurons. With several aspects of addiction depending on mnemonic processes elicited by drug experience, disrupting lactate transport involved in the formation of a pathological learning, linking the incentive, and motivational effects of drugs with drug-conditioned stimuli represent a promising approach to encourage abstinence.

  17. The neuroprotective effects of tocotrienol rich fraction and alpha tocopherol against glutamate injury in astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thilaga Rati Selvaraju

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Tocotrienol rich fraction (TRF is an extract of palm oil, which consists of 25% alpha tocopherol (α-TCP and 75% tocotrienols. TRF has been shown to possess potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, neuroprotection, and cholesterol lowering activities. Glutamate is the main excitatory amino acid neurotransmitter in the central nervous system of mammalian, which can be excitotoxic, and it has been suggested to play a key role in neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. In this present study, the effects of vitamin E (TRF and α-TCP in protecting astrocytes against glutamate injury were elucidated. Astrocytes induced with 180 mM of glutamate lead to significant cell death. However, glutamate mediated cytotoxicity was diminished via pre and post supplementation of TRF and α-TCP. Hence, vitamin E acted as a potent antioxidant agent in recovering mitochondrial injury due to elevated oxidative stress, and enhanced better survivability upon glutamate toxicity.  

  18. Lactate release from astrocytes to neurons contributes to cocaine memory formation

    KAUST Repository

    Boury-Jamot, Benjamin

    2016-10-12

    The identification of neural substrates underlying the long lasting debilitating impact of drug cues is critical for developing novel therapeutic tools. Metabolic coupling has long been considered a key mechanism through which astrocytes and neurons actively interact in response of neuronal activity, but recent findings suggested that disrupting metabolic coupling may represent an innovative approach to prevent memory formation, in particular drug-related memories. Here, we review converging evidence illustrating how memory and addiction share neural circuitry and molecular mechanisms implicating lactate-mediated metabolic coupling between astrocytes and neurons. With several aspects of addiction depending on mnemonic processes elicited by drug experience, disrupting lactate transport involved in the formation of a pathological learning, linking the incentive, and motivational effects of drugs with drug-conditioned stimuli represent a promising approach to encourage abstinence.

  19. Elucidating the Role of Injury-Induced Electric Fields (EFs in Regulating the Astrocytic Response to Injury in the Mammalian Central Nervous System.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew L Baer

    Full Text Available Injury to the vertebrate central nervous system (CNS induces astrocytes to change their morphology, to increase their rate of proliferation, and to display directional migration to the injury site, all to facilitate repair. These astrocytic responses to injury occur in a clear temporal sequence and, by their intensity and duration, can have both beneficial and detrimental effects on the repair of damaged CNS tissue. Studies on highly regenerative tissues in non-mammalian vertebrates have demonstrated that the intensity of direct-current extracellular electric fields (EFs at the injury site, which are 50-100 fold greater than in uninjured tissue, represent a potent signal to drive tissue repair. In contrast, a 10-fold EF increase has been measured in many injured mammalian tissues where limited regeneration occurs. As the astrocytic response to CNS injury is crucial to the reparative outcome, we exposed purified rat cortical astrocytes to EF intensities associated with intact and injured mammalian tissues, as well as to those EF intensities measured in regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, to determine whether EFs may contribute to the astrocytic injury response. Astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with uninjured tissue showed little change in their cellular behavior. However, astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with injured tissue showed a dramatic increase in migration and proliferation. At EF intensities associated with regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, these cellular responses were even more robust and included morphological changes consistent with a regenerative phenotype. These findings suggest that endogenous EFs may be a crucial signal for regulating the astrocytic response to injury and that their manipulation may be a novel target for facilitating CNS repair.

  20. Elucidating the Role of Injury-Induced Electric Fields (EFs) in Regulating the Astrocytic Response to Injury in the Mammalian Central Nervous System.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baer, Matthew L; Henderson, Scott C; Colello, Raymond J

    2015-01-01

    Injury to the vertebrate central nervous system (CNS) induces astrocytes to change their morphology, to increase their rate of proliferation, and to display directional migration to the injury site, all to facilitate repair. These astrocytic responses to injury occur in a clear temporal sequence and, by their intensity and duration, can have both beneficial and detrimental effects on the repair of damaged CNS tissue. Studies on highly regenerative tissues in non-mammalian vertebrates have demonstrated that the intensity of direct-current extracellular electric fields (EFs) at the injury site, which are 50-100 fold greater than in uninjured tissue, represent a potent signal to drive tissue repair. In contrast, a 10-fold EF increase has been measured in many injured mammalian tissues where limited regeneration occurs. As the astrocytic response to CNS injury is crucial to the reparative outcome, we exposed purified rat cortical astrocytes to EF intensities associated with intact and injured mammalian tissues, as well as to those EF intensities measured in regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, to determine whether EFs may contribute to the astrocytic injury response. Astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with uninjured tissue showed little change in their cellular behavior. However, astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with injured tissue showed a dramatic increase in migration and proliferation. At EF intensities associated with regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, these cellular responses were even more robust and included morphological changes consistent with a regenerative phenotype. These findings suggest that endogenous EFs may be a crucial signal for regulating the astrocytic response to injury and that their manipulation may be a novel target for facilitating CNS repair.

  1. Glial-glial and glial-neuronal interfaces in radiation-induced, glia-depleted spinal cord

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gilmore, S.A.; Sims, T.J.

    1997-01-01

    This review summarises some of the major findings derived from studies using the model of a glia-depleted environment developed and characterised in this laboratory. Glial depletion is achieved by exposure of the immature rodent spinal cord to x-radiation which markedly reduces both astrocyte and oligodendrocyte populations and severely impairs myelination. This glia-depleted, hypomylinated state presents a unique opportunity to examine aspects of spinal cord maturation in the absence of a normal glial population. An associated sequela within 2-3 wk following irradiation is the appearance of Schwann cells in the dorsal portion of the spinal cord. Characteristics of these intraspinal Schwann cells, their patterns of myelination or ensheathment, and their interrelations with the few remaining central glia have been examined. A later sequela is the development of Schwann cells in the ventral aspect of the spinal cord where they occur predominantly in the grey matter. (author)

  2. The State of Play with iPSCs and Spinal Cord Injury Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart I. Hodgetts

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The application of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC technologies in cell based strategies, for the repair of the central nervous system (with particular focus on the spinal cord, is moving towards the potential use of clinical grade donor cells. The ability of iPSCs to generate donor neuronal, glial and astrocytic phenotypes for transplantation is highlighted here, and we review recent research using iPSCs in attempts to treat spinal cord injury in various animal models. Also discussed are issues relating to the production of clinical grade iPSCs, recent advances in transdifferentiation protocols for iPSC-derived donor cell populations, concerns about tumourogenicity, and whether iPSC technologies offer any advantages over previous donor cell candidates or tissues already in use as therapeutic tools in experimental spinal cord injury studies.

  3. Astrocytes require insulin-like growth factor I to protect neurons against oxidative injury [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/2lf

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Genis

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress is a proposed mechanism in brain aging, making the study of its regulatory processes an important aspect of current neurobiological research. In this regard, the role of the aging regulator insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I in brain responses to oxidative stress remains elusive as both beneficial and detrimental actions have been ascribed to this growth factor. Because astrocytes protect neurons against oxidative injury, we explored whether IGF-I participates in astrocyte neuroprotection and found that blockade of the IGF-I receptor in astrocytes abrogated their rescuing effect on neurons. The protection mediated by IGF-I against oxidative stress (H2O2 in astrocytes is probably needed for these cells to provide adequate neuroprotection. Indeed, in astrocytes but not in neurons, IGF-I helps decrease the pro-oxidant protein thioredoxin-interacting protein 1 and normalizes the levels of reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, IGF-I cooperates with trophic signals produced by astrocytes in response to H2O2 such as stem cell factor (SCF to protect neurons against oxidative insult. After stroke, a condition associated with brain aging where oxidative injury affects peri-infarcted regions, a simultaneous increase in SCF and IGF-I expression was found in the cortex, suggesting that a similar cooperative response takes place in vivo. Cell-specific modulation by IGF-I of brain responses to oxidative stress may contribute in clarifying the role of IGF-I in brain aging.

  4. Astrocytes require insulin-like growth factor I to protect neurons against oxidative injury [v2; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/38u

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Genis

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress is a proposed mechanism in brain aging, making the study of its regulatory processes an important aspect of current neurobiological research. In this regard, the role of the aging regulator insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I in brain responses to oxidative stress remains elusive as both beneficial and detrimental actions have been ascribed to this growth factor. Because astrocytes protect neurons against oxidative injury, we explored whether IGF-I participates in astrocyte neuroprotection and found that blockade of the IGF-I receptor in astrocytes abrogated their rescuing effect on neurons. We found that IGF-I directly protects astrocytes against oxidative stress (H2O2. Indeed, in astrocytes but not in neurons, IGF-I decreases the pro-oxidant protein thioredoxin-interacting protein 1 and normalizes the levels of reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, IGF-I cooperates with trophic signals produced by astrocytes in response to H2O2 such as stem cell factor (SCF to protect neurons against oxidative insult. After stroke, a condition associated with brain aging where oxidative injury affects peri-infarcted regions, a simultaneous increase in SCF and IGF-I expression was found in the cortex, suggesting that a similar cooperative response takes place in vivo. Cell-specific modulation by IGF-I of brain responses to oxidative stress may contribute in clarifying the role of IGF-I in brain aging.

  5. Increased toll-like receptor 4 in cerebral endothelial cells contributes to the astrocyte swelling and brain edema in acute hepatic encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, Arumugam R; Tong, Xiao Y; Curtis, Kevin M; Ruiz-Cordero, Roberto; Abreu, Maria T; Norenberg, Michael D

    2014-03-01

    Astrocyte swelling and the subsequent increase in intracranial pressure and brain herniation are major clinical consequences in patients with acute hepatic encephalopathy. We recently reported that conditioned media from brain endothelial cells (ECs) exposed to ammonia, a mixture of cytokines (CKs) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS), when added to astrocytes caused cell swelling. In this study, we investigated the possibility that ammonia and inflammatory agents activate the toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) in ECs, resulting in the release of factors that ultimately cause astrocyte swelling. We found a significant increase in TLR4 protein expression when ECs were exposed to ammonia, CKs or LPS alone, while exposure of ECs to a combination of these agents potentiate such effects. In addition, astrocytes exposed to conditioned media from TLR4-silenced ECs that were treated with ammonia, CKs or LPS, resulted in a significant reduction in astrocyte swelling. TLR4 protein up-regulation was also detected in rat brain ECs after treatment with the liver toxin thioacetamide, and that thioacetamide-treated TLR4 knock-out mice exhibited a reduction in brain edema. These studies strongly suggest that ECs significantly contribute to the astrocyte swelling/brain edema in acute hepatic encephalopathy, likely as a consequence of increased TLR4 protein expression by blood-borne noxious agents. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  6. Evidence supporting a role for astrocytes in the regulation of cognitive flexibility and neuronal oscillations through the Ca2+ binding protein S100β.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brockett, Adam T; Kane, Gary A; Monari, Patrick K; Briones, Brandy A; Vigneron, Pierre-Antoine; Barber, Gabriela A; Bermudez, Andres; Dieffenbach, Uma; Kloth, Alexander D; Buschman, Timothy J; Gould, Elizabeth

    2018-01-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) is important for cognitive flexibility, the ability to switch between two task-relevant dimensions. Changes in neuronal oscillations and alterations in the coupling across frequency ranges have been correlated with attention and cognitive flexibility. Here we show that astrocytes in the mPFC of adult male Sprague Dawley rats, participate in cognitive flexibility through the astrocyte-specific Ca2+ binding protein S100β, which improves cognitive flexibility and increases phase amplitude coupling between theta and gamma oscillations. We further show that reduction of astrocyte number in the mPFC impairs cognitive flexibility and diminishes delta, alpha and gamma power. Conversely, chemogenetic activation of astrocytic intracellular Ca2+ signaling in the mPFC enhances cognitive flexibility, while inactivation of endogenous S100β among chemogenetically activated astrocytes in the mPFC prevents this improvement. Collectively, our work suggests that astrocytes make important contributions to cognitive flexibility and that they do so by releasing a Ca2+ binding protein which in turn enhances coordinated neuronal oscillations.

  7. Signaling triggered by Thy-1 interaction with ß3 integrin on astrocytes is an essential step towards unraveling neuronal Thy-1 function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANA MARIA AVALOS

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Thy-1 is an abundant neuronal glycoprotein in mammals. Despite such prevalence, Thy-1 function remains largely obscure in the absence of a defined ligand. Recently described evidence that Thy-1 interacts with ß3 integrin on astrocytes will be discussed. Thy-1 binding to ß3 integrin triggers tyrosine phosphorylation of focal adhesion proteins in astrocytes, thereby promoting focal adhesion formation, cell attachment and spreading. Thy-1 has been reported to modulate neurite outgrowth by triggering a cellular response in neurons. However, our data indicate that Thy-1 can also initiate signaling events that promote adhesion of adjacent astrocytes to the underlying surface. Preliminary results suggest that morphological changes observed in the actin cytoskeleton of astrocytes as a consequence of Thy-1 binding is mediated by small GTPases from the Rho family. Our findings argue that Thy-1 functions in a bimodal fashion, as a receptor on neuronal cells and as a ligand for ß3 integrin receptor on astrocytes. Since Thy-1 is implicated in the inhibition of neurite outgrowth, signaling events in astrocytes are likely to play an important role in this process

  8. 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.

  9. Astrocyte matricellular proteins that control excitatory synaptogenesis are regulated by inflammatory cytokines and correlate with paralysis severity during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pennelope K. Blakely

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The matricellular proteins, secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine (SPARC and SPARC-like 1 (SPARCL1, are produced by astrocytes and control excitatory synaptogenesis in the central nervous system. While SPARCL1 directly promotes excitatory synapse formation in vitro and in the developing nervous system in vivo, SPARC specifically antagonizes the synaptogenic actions of SPARCL1. We hypothesized these proteins also help maintain existing excitatory synapses in adult hosts, and that local inflammation in the spinal cord alters their production in a way that dynamically modulates motor synapses and impacts the severity of paralysis during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE in mice. Using a spontaneously remitting EAE model, paralysis severity correlated inversely with both expression of synaptic proteins and the number of synapses in direct contact with the perikarya of motor neurons in spinal grey matter. In both remitting and non-remitting EAE models, paralysis severity also correlated inversely with sparcl1:sparc transcript and SPARCL1:SPARC protein ratios directly in lumbar spinal cord tissue. In vitro, astrocyte production of both SPARCL1 and SPARC was regulated by T cell-derived cytokines, causing dynamic modulation of the SPARCL1:SPARC expression ratio. Taken together, these data support a model whereby proinflammatory cytokines inhibit SPARCL1 and/or augment SPARC expression by astrocytes in spinal grey matter that, in turn, cause either transient or sustained synaptic retraction from lumbar spinal motor neurons thereby regulating hind limb paralysis during EAE. Ongoing studies seek ways to alter this SPARCL1:SPARC expression ratio in favor of synapse reformation/maintenance and thus help to modulate neurologic deficits during times of inflammation. This could identify new astrocyte-targeted therapies for diseases such as multiple sclerosis.

  10. Symptomatic epidural lipomatosis of the spinal cord in a child: MR demonstration of spinal cord injury

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Munoz, Alberto [Department of Radiology, Section of Neuroradiology, 505 Parnassus Av, L-371, University of California-San Francisco, CA 94143-0628 (United States); Servicio de Radiodiagnostico, Seccion de Neurorradiologia, Hospital Universitario ' ' 12 de Octubre' ' , 28040 Madrid (Spain); Barkovich, James A. [Department of Radiology, Section of Neuroradiology, 505 Parnassus Av, L-371, University of California-San Francisco, CA 94143-0628 (United States); Mateos, Fernando; Simon, Rogelio [Seccion de Neurpediatria, Servicio de Neurologia, Hospital Universitario ' ' 12 de Octubre' ' , 28041 Madrid (Spain)

    2002-12-01

    We report a case of symptomatic epidural lipomatosis in an 8-year-old girl with Cushing's syndrome secondary to longstanding high-dose steroid therapy for Crohn's disease. MR imaging of the spine revealed massive diffuse epidural fat compressing the entire spinal cord with T2 prolongation in the central gray matter of the cord suggesting ischemic myelopathy. This finding has not been previously demonstrated on imaging. A proposed mechanism underlying these findings is discussed. (orig.)

  11. Symptomatic epidural lipomatosis of the spinal cord in a child: MR demonstration of spinal cord injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Munoz, Alberto; Barkovich, James A.; Mateos, Fernando; Simon, Rogelio

    2002-01-01

    We report a case of symptomatic epidural lipomatosis in an 8-year-old girl with Cushing's syndrome secondary to longstanding high-dose steroid therapy for Crohn's disease. MR imaging of the spine revealed massive diffuse epidural fat compressing the entire spinal cord with T2 prolongation in the central gray matter of the cord suggesting ischemic myelopathy. This finding has not been previously demonstrated on imaging. A proposed mechanism underlying these findings is discussed. (orig.)

  12. Trauma: Spinal Cord Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckert, Matthew J; Martin, Matthew J

    2017-10-01

    Injuries to the spinal column and spinal cord frequently occur after high-energy mechanisms of injury, or with lower-energy mechanisms, in select patient populations like the elderly. A focused yet complete neurologic examination during the initial evaluation will guide subsequent diagnostic procedures and early supportive measures to help prevent further injury. For patients with injury to bone and/or ligaments, the initial focus should be spinal immobilization and prevention of inducing injury to the spinal cord. Spinal cord injury is associated with numerous life-threatening complications during the acute and long-term phases of care that all acute care surgeons must recognize. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  13. Novel role for SLPI in MOG-induced EAE revealed by spinal cord expression analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aigner Ludwig

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE induced by myelin oligodendrocyte protein (MOG in female Dark Agouti (DA rats is a chronic demyelinating animal model of multiple sclerosis (MS. To identify new candidate molecules involved in the evolution or repair of EAE-lesions we used Affymetrix oligonucleotide microarrays to compare the spinal cord transcriptome at the peak of EAE, during remission and at the first relapse with healthy DA rats. Methods Untreated DA rats and DA rats immunised with MOG protein were sacrificed at defined time points. Total RNA was isolated from spinal cord tissue and used for hybridization of Affymetrix rat genome arrays RG U34 A-C. Selected expression values were confirmed by RealTime PCR. Adult neural stem cells were incubated with recombinant secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor (SLPI. Proliferation was assessed by BrdU incorporation, cyclin D1 and HES1 expression by RealTime PCR, cell differentiation by immunofluorescence analysis and IkappaBalpha degradation by Western blot. Results Among approximately 26,000 transcripts studied more than 1,100 were differentially regulated. Focussing on functional themes, we noticed a sustained downregulation of most of the transcripts of the cholesterol biosynthesis pathway. Furthermore, we found new candidate genes possibly contributing to regenerative processes in the spinal cord. Twelve transcripts were solely upregulated in the recovery phase, including genes not previously associated with repair processes. Expression of SLPI was upregulated more than hundredfold during EAE attack. Using immunohistochemistry, SLPI was identified in macrophages, activated microglia, neuronal cells and astrocytes. Incubation of adult neural stem cells (NSC with recombinant SLPI resulted in an increase of cell proliferation and of differentiation towards oligodendrocytes. These processes were paralleled by an upregulation of the cell-cycle promotor cyclin D1 and a

  14. Nanofiber mat spinal cord dressing-released glutamate impairs blood-spinal cord barrier

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota Sulejczak

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available An excessive glutamate level can result in excitotoxic damage and death of central nervous system (CNS cells, and is involved in the pathogenesis of many CNS diseases. It may also be related to a failure of the blood-spinal cord barrier (BSCB. This study was aimed at examining the effects of extended administration of monosodium glutamate on the BSCB and spinal cord cells in adult male Wistar rats. The glutamate was delivered by subarachnoidal application of glutamate-carrying electrospun nanofiber mat dressing at the lumbar enlargement level. Half of the rats with the glutamate-loaded mat application were treated systemically with the histone deacetylase inhibitor valproic acid. A group of intact rats and a rat group with subarachnoidal application of an ‘empty’ (i.e., carrying no glutamate nanofiber mat dressing served as controls. All the rats were euthanized three weeks later and lumbar fragments of their spinal cords were harvested for histological, immunohistochemical and ultrastructural studies. The samples from controls revealed normal parenchyma and BSCB morphology, whereas those from rats with the glutamate-loaded nanofiber mat dressing showed many intraparenchymal microhemorrhages of variable sizes. The capillaries in the vicinity of the glutamate-carrying dressing (in the meninges and white matter alike were edematous and leaky, and their endothelial cells showed degenerative changes: extensive swelling, enhanced vacuo­lization and the presence of vascular intraluminal projections. However, endothelial tight junctions were generally well preserved. Some endothelial cells were dying by necrosis or apoptosis. The adjacent parenchyma showed astrogliosis with astrocytic hypertrophy and swelling of perivascular astrocytic feet. Neurons in the parenchyma revealed multiple symptoms of degeneration, including, inter alia, perikaryal, dendritic and axonal swelling, and destruction of organelles. All the damage symptoms were slightly less

  15. 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...

  16. Synaptic neuron-astrocyte communication is supported by an order of magnitude analysis of inositol tris-phosphate diffusion at the nanoscale in a model of peri-synaptic astrocyte projection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montes de Oca Balderas, Pavel; Montes de Oca Balderas, Horacio

    2018-01-01

    Astrocytes were conceived for decades only as supporting cells of the brain. However, the observation of Ca2+ waves in astrocyte synctitia, their neurotransmitter receptor expression and gliotransmitter secretion suggested a role in information handling, conception that has some controversies. Synaptic Neuron-Astrocyte metabotropic communication mediated by Inositol tris-phosphate (SN-AmcIP3) is supported by different reports. However, some models contradict this idea and Ca2+ stores are 1000 ± 325 nm apart from the Postsynaptic Density in the Perisynaptic Astrocyte Projections (PAP's), suggesting that SN-AmcIP3 is extrasynaptic. However, this assumption does not consider IP3 Diffusion Coefficient ( Dab ), that activates IP3 Receptor (IP3R) releasing Ca2+ from intracellular stores. In this work we idealized a model of a PAP (PAPm) to perform an order of magnitude analysis of IP3 diffusion using a transient mass diffusion model. This model shows that IP3 forms a concentration gradient along the PAPm that reaches the steady state in milliseconds, three orders of magnitude before IP3 degradation. The model predicts that IP3 concentration near the Ca2+ stores may activate IP3R, depending upon Phospholipase C (PLC) number and activity. Moreover, the PAPm supports that IP3 and extracellular Ca2+ entry synergize to promote global Ca2+ transients. The model presented here indicates that Ca2+ stores position in PAP's does not limit SN-AmcIP3.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Potential of human dental stem cells in repairing the complete transection of rat spinal cord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Chao; Li, Xinghan; Sun, Liang; Guo, Weihua; Tian, Weidong

    2017-04-01

    Objective. The adult spinal cord of mammals contains a certain amount of neural precursor cells, but these endogenous cells have a limited capacity for replacement of lost cells after spinal cord injury. The exogenous stem cells transplantation has become a therapeutic strategy for spinal cord repairing because of their immunomodulatory and differentiation capacity. In addition, dental stem cells originating from the cranial neural crest might be candidate cell sources for neural engineering. Approach. Human dental follicle stem cells (DFSCs), stem cells from apical papilla (SCAPs) and dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) were isolated and identified in vitro, then green GFP-labeled stem cells with pellets were transplanted into completely transected spinal cord. The functional recovery of rats and multiple neuro-regenerative mechanisms were explored. Main results. The dental stem cells, especially DFSCs, demonstrated the potential in repairing the completely transected spinal cord and promote functional recovery after injury. The major involved mechanisms were speculated below: First, dental stem cells inhibited the expression of interleukin-1β to reduce the inflammatory response; second, they inhibited the expression of ras homolog gene family member A (RhoA) to promote neurite regeneration; third, they inhibited the sulfonylurea receptor1 (SUR-1) expression to reduce progressive hemorrhagic necrosis; lastly, parts of the transplanted cells survived and differentiated into mature neurons and oligodendrocytes but not astrocyte, which is beneficial for promoting axons growth. Significance. Dental stem cells presented remarkable tissue regenerative capability after spinal cord injury through immunomodulatory, differentiation and protection capacity.

  1. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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  2. Spinal Cord Injury 101

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    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — To design and fabricate a light weight (few oz), very small (~2 inch length) parachute cord tension sensor demonstrator device.A major challenge for the CPAS (The...

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  20. Cord-Blood Banking

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    ... cord blood mainly because of the promise that stem cell research holds for the future. Most of us would have little use for stem cells now, but research into using them to treat diseases is ongoing — ...

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    Full Text Available ... arrow What is the “Spinal Cord Injury Model Systems” program? play_arrow ... recommend or endorse health care products or services, or control the information found on external websites. The Hill Foundation is ...

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