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Sample records for regulate astrocyte cytoskeletal

  1. The phosphorylation status and cytoskeletal remodeling of striatal astrocytes treated with quinolinic acid

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pierozan, Paula; Ferreira, Fernanda; Ortiz de Lima, Bárbara; Gonçalves Fernandes, Carolina; Totarelli Monteforte, Priscila; Castro Medaglia, Natalia de; Bincoletto, Claudia; Soubhi Smaili, Soraya; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2014-01-01

    Quinolinic acid (QUIN) is a glutamate agonist which markedly enhances the vulnerability of neural cells to excitotoxicity. QUIN is produced from the amino acid tryptophan through the kynurenine pathway (KP). Dysregulation of this pathway is associated with neurodegenerative conditions. In this study we treated striatal astrocytes in culture with QUIN and assayed the endogenous phosphorylating system associated with glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and vimentin as well as cytoskeletal remodeling. After 24 h incubation with 100 µM QUIN, cells were exposed to 32 P-orthophosphate and/or protein kinase A (PKA), protein kinase dependent of Ca 2+ /calmodulin II (PKCaMII) or protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitors, H89 (20 μM), KN93 (10 μM) and staurosporin (10 nM), respectively. Results showed that hyperphosphorylation was abrogated by PKA and PKC inhibitors but not by the PKCaMII inhibitor. The specific antagonists to ionotropic NMDA and non-NMDA (50 µM DL-AP5 and CNQX, respectively) glutamate receptors as well as to metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGLUR; 50 µM MCPG), mGLUR1 (100 µM MPEP) and mGLUR5 (10 µM 4C3HPG) prevented the hyperphosphorylation provoked by QUIN. Also, intra and extracellular Ca 2+ quelators (1 mM EGTA; 10 µM BAPTA-AM, respectively) prevented QUIN-mediated effect, while Ca 2+ influx through voltage-dependent Ca 2+ channel type L (L-VDCC) (blocker: 10 µM verapamil) is not implicated in this effect. Morphological analysis showed dramatically altered actin cytoskeleton with concomitant change of morphology to fusiform and/or flattened cells with retracted cytoplasm and disruption of the GFAP meshwork, supporting misregulation of actin cytoskeleton. Both hyperphosphorylation and cytoskeletal remodeling were reversed 24 h after QUIN removal. Astrocytes are highly plastic cells and the vulnerability of astrocyte cytoskeleton may have important implications for understanding the neurotoxicity of QUIN in neurodegenerative disorders. - Highlights:

  2. The phosphorylation status and cytoskeletal remodeling of striatal astrocytes treated with quinolinic acid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pierozan, Paula; Ferreira, Fernanda; Ortiz de Lima, Bárbara; Gonçalves Fernandes, Carolina [Departamento de Bioquímica, Instituto de Ciências Básicas da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS 90035-003 (Brazil); Totarelli Monteforte, Priscila; Castro Medaglia, Natalia de; Bincoletto, Claudia; Soubhi Smaili, Soraya [Departamento de Farmacologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP/EPM), São Paulo, SP (Brazil); Pessoa-Pureur, Regina, E-mail: rpureur@ufrgs.br [Departamento de Bioquímica, Instituto de Ciências Básicas da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS 90035-003 (Brazil)

    2014-04-01

    Quinolinic acid (QUIN) is a glutamate agonist which markedly enhances the vulnerability of neural cells to excitotoxicity. QUIN is produced from the amino acid tryptophan through the kynurenine pathway (KP). Dysregulation of this pathway is associated with neurodegenerative conditions. In this study we treated striatal astrocytes in culture with QUIN and assayed the endogenous phosphorylating system associated with glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and vimentin as well as cytoskeletal remodeling. After 24 h incubation with 100 µM QUIN, cells were exposed to {sup 32}P-orthophosphate and/or protein kinase A (PKA), protein kinase dependent of Ca{sup 2+}/calmodulin II (PKCaMII) or protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitors, H89 (20 μM), KN93 (10 μM) and staurosporin (10 nM), respectively. Results showed that hyperphosphorylation was abrogated by PKA and PKC inhibitors but not by the PKCaMII inhibitor. The specific antagonists to ionotropic NMDA and non-NMDA (50 µM DL-AP5 and CNQX, respectively) glutamate receptors as well as to metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGLUR; 50 µM MCPG), mGLUR1 (100 µM MPEP) and mGLUR5 (10 µM 4C3HPG) prevented the hyperphosphorylation provoked by QUIN. Also, intra and extracellular Ca{sup 2+} quelators (1 mM EGTA; 10 µM BAPTA-AM, respectively) prevented QUIN-mediated effect, while Ca{sup 2+} influx through voltage-dependent Ca{sup 2+} channel type L (L-VDCC) (blocker: 10 µM verapamil) is not implicated in this effect. Morphological analysis showed dramatically altered actin cytoskeleton with concomitant change of morphology to fusiform and/or flattened cells with retracted cytoplasm and disruption of the GFAP meshwork, supporting misregulation of actin cytoskeleton. Both hyperphosphorylation and cytoskeletal remodeling were reversed 24 h after QUIN removal. Astrocytes are highly plastic cells and the vulnerability of astrocyte cytoskeleton may have important implications for understanding the neurotoxicity of QUIN in neurodegenerative

  3. Quinolinic acid induces disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis in striatal neurons. Protective role of astrocyte-neuron interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierozan, Paula; Ferreira, Fernanda; de Lima, Bárbara Ortiz; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2015-02-01

    Quinolinic acid (QUIN) is an endogenous metabolite of the kynurenine pathway involved in several neurological disorders. Among the several mechanisms involved in QUIN-mediated toxicity, disruption of the cytoskeleton has been demonstrated in striatally injected rats and in striatal slices. The present work searched for the actions of QUIN in primary striatal neurons. Neurons exposed to 10 µM QUIN presented hyperphosphorylated neurofilament (NF) subunits (NFL, NFM, and NFH). Hyperphosphorylation was abrogated in the presence of protein kinase A and protein kinase C inhibitors H89 (20 μM) and staurosporine (10 nM), respectively, as well as by specific antagonists to N-methyl-D-aspartate (50 µM DL-AP5) and metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (100 µM MPEP). Also, intra- and extracellular Ca(2+) chelators (10 µM BAPTA-AM and 1 mM EGTA, respectively) and Ca(2+) influx through L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channel (10 µM verapamil) are implicated in QUIN-mediated effects. Cells immunostained for the neuronal markers βIII-tubulin and microtubule-associated protein 2 showed altered neurite/neuron ratios and neurite outgrowth. NF hyperphosphorylation and morphological alterations were totally prevented by conditioned medium from QUIN-treated astrocytes. Cocultured astrocytes and neurons interacted with one another reciprocally, protecting them against QUIN injury. Cocultured cells preserved their cytoskeletal organization and cell morphology together with unaltered activity of the phosphorylating system associated with the cytoskeleton. This article describes cytoskeletal disruption as one of the most relevant actions of QUIN toxicity in striatal neurons in culture with soluble factors secreted by astrocytes, with neuron-astrocyte interaction playing a role in neuroprotection. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Quinolinic acid neurotoxicity: Differential roles of astrocytes and microglia via FGF-2-mediated signaling in redox-linked cytoskeletal changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierozan, Paula; Biasibetti, Helena; Schmitz, Felipe; Ávila, Helena; Parisi, Mariana M; Barbe-Tuana, Florencia; Wyse, Angela T S; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2016-12-01

    QUIN is a glutamate agonist playing a role in the misregulation of the cytoskeleton, which is associated with neurodegeneration in rats. In this study, we focused on microglial activation, FGF2/Erk signaling, gap junctions (GJs), inflammatory parameters and redox imbalance acting on cytoskeletal dynamics of the in QUIN-treated neural cells of rat striatum. FGF-2/Erk signaling was not altered in QUIN-treated primary astrocytes or neurons, however cytoskeleton was disrupted. In co-cultured astrocytes and neurons, QUIN-activated FGF2/Erk signaling prevented the cytoskeleton from remodeling. In mixed cultures (astrocyte, neuron, microglia), QUIN-induced FGF-2 increased level failed to activate Erk and promoted cytoskeletal destabilization. The effects of QUIN in mixed cultures involved redox imbalance upstream of Erk activation. Decreased connexin 43 (Cx43) immunocontent and functional GJs, was also coincident with disruption of the cytoskeleton in primary astrocytes and mixed cultures. We postulate that in interacting astrocytes and neurons the cytoskeleton is preserved against the insult of QUIN by activation of FGF-2/Erk signaling and proper cell-cell interaction through GJs. In mixed cultures, the FGF-2/Erk signaling is blocked by the redox imbalance associated with microglial activation and disturbed cell communication, disrupting the cytoskeleton. Thus, QUIN signal activates differential mechanisms that could stabilize or destabilize the cytoskeleton of striatal astrocytes and neurons in culture, and glial cells play a pivotal role in these responses preserving or disrupting a combination of signaling pathways and cell-cell interactions. Taken together, our findings shed light into the complex role of the active interaction of astrocytes, neurons and microglia in the neurotoxicity of QUIN. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Regulation of cytoskeletal organization by syndecan transmembrane proteoglycans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yoneda, Atsuko; Couchman, John R

    2003-01-01

    have recently suggested that signaling through core protein of syndecans can regulate cytoskeletal organization through their clustering, association with cytoskeletal structures, binding to cytoplasmic binding proteins, and intracellular phosphorylation. Here we will review current understanding...... of signaling through syndecans in cytoskeletal organization....

  6. 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.

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

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    Wayne Chadwick

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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

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

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    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

  12. 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.

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

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    Susan Yu Gordleeva

    2012-11-01

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

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

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    Nathalie Rouach

    2017-04-01

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

  15. 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.

  16. Protein targeting to glycogen is a master regulator of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Ruchti, E.

    2016-10-08

    The storage and use of glycogen, the main energy reserve in the brain, is a metabolic feature of astrocytes. Glycogen synthesis is regulated by Protein Targeting to Glycogen (PTG), a member of specific glycogen-binding subunits of protein phosphatase-1 (PPP1). It positively regulates glycogen synthesis through de-phosphorylation of both glycogen synthase (activation) and glycogen phosphorylase (inactivation). In cultured astrocytes, PTG mRNA levels were previously shown to be enhanced by the neurotransmitter noradrenaline. To achieve further insight into the role of PTG in the regulation of astrocytic glycogen, its levels of expression were manipulated in primary cultures of mouse cortical astrocytes using adenovirus-mediated overexpression of tagged-PTG or siRNA to downregulate its expression. Infection of astrocytes with adenovirus led to a strong increase in PTG expression and was associated with massive glycogen accumulation (>100 fold), demonstrating that increased PTG expression is sufficient to induce glycogen synthesis and accumulation. In contrast, siRNA-mediated downregulation of PTG resulted in a 2-fold decrease in glycogen levels. Interestingly, PTG downregulation strongly impaired long-term astrocytic glycogen synthesis induced by insulin or noradrenaline. Finally, these effects of PTG downregulation on glycogen metabolism could also be observed in cultured astrocytes isolated from PTG-KO mice. Collectively, these observations point to a major role of PTG in the regulation of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes and indicate that conditions leading to changes in PTG expression will directly impact glycogen levels in this cell type.

  17. Cooperation of the BTB-Zinc finger protein, Abrupt, with cytoskeletal regulators in Drosophila epithelial tumorigenesis

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    Nezaket Turkel

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The deregulation of cell polarity or cytoskeletal regulators is a common occurrence in human epithelial cancers. Moreover, there is accumulating evidence in human epithelial cancer that BTB-ZF genes, such as Bcl6 and ZBTB7A, are oncogenic. From our previous studies in the vinegar fly, Drosophila melanogaster, we have identified a cooperative interaction between a mutation in the apico-basal cell polarity regulator Scribble (Scrib and overexpression of the BTB-ZF protein Abrupt (Ab. Herein, we show that co-expression of ab with actin cytoskeletal regulators, RhoGEF2 or Src64B, in the developing eye-antennal epithelial tissue results in the formation of overgrown amorphous tumours, whereas ab and DRac1 co-expression leads to non-cell autonomous overgrowth. Together with ab, these genes affect the expression of differentiation genes, resulting in tumours locked in a progenitor cell fate. Finally, we show that the expression of two mammalian genes related to ab, Bcl6 and ZBTB7A, which are oncogenes in mammalian epithelial cancers, significantly correlate with the upregulation of cytoskeletal genes or downregulation of apico-basal cell polarity neoplastic tumour suppressor genes in colorectal, lung and other human epithelial cancers. Altogether, this analysis has revealed that upregulation of cytoskeletal regulators cooperate with Abrupt in Drosophila epithelial tumorigenesis, and that high expression of human BTB-ZF genes, Bcl6 and ZBTB7A, shows significant correlations with cytoskeletal and cell polarity gene expression in specific epithelial tumour types. This highlights the need for further investigation of the cooperation between these genes in mammalian systems.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Paroxetine prevented the down-regulation of astrocytic L-Glu transporters in neuroinflammation

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    Koki Fujimori

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The extracellular L-glutamate (L-Glu concentration is elevated in neuroinflammation, thereby causing excitotoxicity. One of the mechanisms is down-regulation of astrocyte L-Glu transporters. Some antidepressants have anti-inflammatory effects. We therefore investigated effects of various antidepressants on the down-regulation of astrocyte L-Glu transporters in the in vitro neuroinflammation model. Among these antidepressants, only paroxetine was effective. We previously demonstrated that the down-regulation of astrocyte L-Glu transporters was caused by L-Glu released from activated microglia. We here clarified that only paroxetine inhibited L-Glu release from microglia. This is the novel action of paroxetine, which may bring advantages on the therapy of neuroinflammation.

  1. Proteomic analysis of astrocytic secretion that regulates neurogenesis using quantitative amine-specific isobaric tagging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yan, Hu; Zhou, Wenhao [Children' s Hospital of Fudan University, 399 Wanyuan Road, Shanghai 201102 (China); Wei, Liming; Zhong, Fan [Institutes of Biomedical Sciences, Fudan University, 138 Yixueyuan Roda, Shanghai 200032 (China); Yang, Yi, E-mail: yyang@shmu.edu.cn [Children' s Hospital of Fudan University, 399 Wanyuan Road, Shanghai 201102 (China)

    2010-01-08

    Astrocytes are essential components of neurogenic niches that affect neurogenesis through membrane association and/or the release of soluble factors. To identify factors released from astrocytes that could regulate neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation, we used mild oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) to inhibit the secretory capacity of astrocytes. Using the Transwell co-culture system, we found that OGD-treated astrocytes could not promote neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation. Next, isobaric tagging for the relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) proteomics techniques was performed to identify the proteins in the supernatants of astrocytes (with or without OGD). Through a multi-step analysis and gene ontology classification, 130 extracellular proteins were identified, most of which were involved in neuronal development, the inflammatory response, extracellular matrix composition and supportive functions. Of these proteins, 44 had never been reported to be produced by astrocytes. Using ProteinPilot software analysis, we found that 60 extracellular proteins were significantly altered (27 upregulated and 33 downregulated) in the supernatant of OGD-treated astrocytes. Among these proteins, 7 have been reported to be able to regulate neurogenesis, while others may have the potential to regulate neurogenesis. This study profiles the major proteins released by astrocytes, which play important roles in the modulation of neurogenesis.

  2. Proteomic analysis of astrocytic secretion that regulates neurogenesis using quantitative amine-specific isobaric tagging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yan, Hu; Zhou, Wenhao; Wei, Liming; Zhong, Fan; Yang, Yi

    2010-01-01

    Astrocytes are essential components of neurogenic niches that affect neurogenesis through membrane association and/or the release of soluble factors. To identify factors released from astrocytes that could regulate neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation, we used mild oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) to inhibit the secretory capacity of astrocytes. Using the Transwell co-culture system, we found that OGD-treated astrocytes could not promote neural stem cell differentiation and proliferation. Next, isobaric tagging for the relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) proteomics techniques was performed to identify the proteins in the supernatants of astrocytes (with or without OGD). Through a multi-step analysis and gene ontology classification, 130 extracellular proteins were identified, most of which were involved in neuronal development, the inflammatory response, extracellular matrix composition and supportive functions. Of these proteins, 44 had never been reported to be produced by astrocytes. Using ProteinPilot software analysis, we found that 60 extracellular proteins were significantly altered (27 upregulated and 33 downregulated) in the supernatant of OGD-treated astrocytes. Among these proteins, 7 have been reported to be able to regulate neurogenesis, while others may have the potential to regulate neurogenesis. This study profiles the major proteins released by astrocytes, which play important roles in the modulation of neurogenesis.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beurel, Eléonore; Jope, Richard S.

    2010-01-01

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

  4. Biotechnological aspects of cytoskeletal regulation in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komis, George; Luptovciak, Ivan; Doskocilova, Anna; Samaj, Jozef

    2015-11-01

    The cytoskeleton is a protein-based intracellular superstructure that evolved early after the appearance of bacterial prokaryotes. Eventually cytoskeletal proteins and their macromolecular assemblies were established in eukaryotes and assumed critical roles in cell movements, intracellular organization, cell division and cell differentiation. In biomedicine the small-molecules targeting cytoskeletal elements are in the frontline of anticancer research with plant-derived cytoskeletal drugs such as Vinca alkaloids and toxoids, being routinely used in the clinical practice. Moreover, plants are also major material, food and energy resources for human activities ranging from agriculture, textile industry, carpentry, energy production and new material development to name some few. Most of these inheritable traits are associated with cell wall synthesis and chemical modification during primary and secondary plant growth and inevitably are associated with the dynamics, organization and interactions of the plant cytoskeleton. Taking into account the vast intracellular spread of microtubules and actin microfilaments the cytoskeleton collectively assumed central roles in plant growth and development, in determining the physical stance of plants against the forces of nature and becoming a battleground between pathogenic invaders and the defense mechanisms of plant cells. This review aims to address the role of the plant cytoskeleton in manageable features of plants including cellulose biosynthesis with implications in wood and fiber properties, in biofuel production and the contribution of plant cytoskeletal elements in plant defense responses against pathogens or detrimental environmental conditions. Ultimately the present work surveys the potential of cytoskeletal proteins as platforms of plant genetic engineering, nominating certain cytoskeletal proteins as vectors of favorable traits in crops and other economically important plants. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All

  5. 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.

  6. Dendritic Cytoskeletal Architecture Is Modulated by Combinatorial Transcriptional Regulation in Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Ravi; Bhattacharjee, Shatabdi; Patel, Atit A; Harris, Jenna M; Bhattacharya, Surajit; Letcher, Jamin M; Clark, Sarah G; Nanda, Sumit; Iyer, Eswar Prasad R; Ascoli, Giorgio A; Cox, Daniel N

    2017-12-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) have emerged as essential cell autonomous mediators of subtype specific dendritogenesis; however, the downstream effectors of these TFs remain largely unknown, as are the cellular events that TFs control to direct morphological change. As dendritic morphology is largely dictated by the organization of the actin and microtubule (MT) cytoskeletons, elucidating TF-mediated cytoskeletal regulatory programs is key to understanding molecular control of diverse dendritic morphologies. Previous studies in Drosophila melanogaster have demonstrated that the conserved TFs Cut and Knot exert combinatorial control over aspects of dendritic cytoskeleton development, promoting actin and MT-based arbor morphology, respectively. To investigate transcriptional targets of Cut and/or Knot regulation, we conducted systematic neurogenomic studies, coupled with in vivo genetic screens utilizing multi-fluor cytoskeletal and membrane marker reporters. These analyses identified a host of putative Cut and/or Knot effector molecules, and a subset of these putative TF targets converge on modulating dendritic cytoskeletal architecture, which are grouped into three major phenotypic categories, based upon neuromorphometric analyses: complexity enhancer, complexity shifter, and complexity suppressor. Complexity enhancer genes normally function to promote higher order dendritic growth and branching with variable effects on MT stabilization and F-actin organization, whereas complexity shifter and complexity suppressor genes normally function in regulating proximal-distal branching distribution or in restricting higher order branching complexity, respectively, with spatially restricted impacts on the dendritic cytoskeleton. Collectively, we implicate novel genes and cellular programs by which TFs distinctly and combinatorially govern dendritogenesis via cytoskeletal modulation. Copyright © 2017 by the Genetics Society of America.

  7. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  9. Evidence for a Role of Proline and Hypothalamic Astrocytes in the Regulation of Glucose Metabolism in Rats

    OpenAIRE

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

    2013-01-01

    The metabolism of lactate to pyruvate in the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH) regulates hepatic glucose production. Because astrocytes and neurons are functionally linked by metabolic coupling through lactate transfer via the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS), we reasoned that astrocytes might be involved in the hypothalamic regulation of glucose metabolism. To examine this possibility, we used the gluconeogenic amino acid proline, which is metabolized to pyruvate in astrocytes. Our result...

  10. Cytoskeletal Reorganization Drives Mesenchymal Condensation and Regulates Downstream Molecular Signaling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Poulomi Ray

    Full Text Available Skeletal condensation occurs when specified mesenchyme cells self-organize over several days to form a distinctive cartilage template. Here, we determine how and when specified mesenchyme cells integrate mechanical and molecular information from their environment, forming cartilage condensations in the pharyngeal arches of chick embryos. By disrupting cytoskeletal reorganization, we demonstrate that dynamic cell shape changes drive condensation and modulate the response of the condensing cells to Fibroblast Growth Factor (FGF, Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP and Transforming Growth Factor beta (TGF-β signaling pathways. Rho Kinase (ROCK-driven actomyosin contractions and Myosin II-generated differential cell cortex tension regulate these cell shape changes. Disruption of the condensation process inhibits the differentiation of the mesenchyme cells into chondrocytes, demonstrating that condensation regulates the fate of the mesenchyme cells. We also find that dorsal and ventral condensations undergo distinct cell shape changes. BMP signaling is instructive for dorsal condensation-specific cell shape changes. Moreover, condensations exhibit ventral characteristics in the absence of BMP signaling, suggesting that in the pharyngeal arches ventral morphology is the ground pattern. Overall, this study characterizes the interplay between cytoskeletal dynamics and molecular signaling in a self-organizing system during tissue morphogenesis.

  11. Kynurenic Acid Prevents Cytoskeletal Disorganization Induced by Quinolinic Acid in Mixed Cultures of Rat Striatum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierozan, Paula; Biasibetti-Brendler, Helena; Schmitz, Felipe; Ferreira, Fernanda; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina; Wyse, Angela T S

    2018-06-01

    Kynurenic acid (KYNA) is a neuroactive metabolite of tryptophan known to modulate a number of mechanisms involved in neural dysfunction. Although its activity in the brain has been widely studied, the effect of KYNA counteracting the actions of quinolinic acid (QUIN) remains unknown. The present study aims at describing the ability of 100 μM KYNA preventing cytoskeletal disruption provoked by QUIN in astrocyte/neuron/microglia mixed culture. KYNA totally preserved cytoskeletal organization, cell morphology, and redox imbalance in mixed cultures exposed to QUIN. However, KYNA partially prevented morphological alteration in isolated primary astrocytes and failed to protect the morphological alterations of neurons caused by QUIN exposure. Moreover, KYNA prevented QUIN-induced microglial activation and upregulation of ionized calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 (Iba-1) and partially preserved tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) level in mixed cultures. TNF-α level was also partially preserved in astrocytes. In addition to the mechanisms dependent on redox imbalance and microglial activation, KYNA prevented downregulation of connexin-43 and the loss of functionality of gap junctions (GJs), preserving cell-cell contact, cytoskeletal organization, and cell morphology in QUIN-treated cells. Furthermore, the toxicity of QUIN targeting the cytoskeleton of mixed cultures was not prevented by the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist MK-801. We suggest that KYNA protects the integrity of the cytoskeleton of mixed cultures by complex mechanisms including modulating microglial activation preventing oxidative imbalance and misregulated GJs leading to disrupted cytoskeleton in QUIN-treated cells. This study contributed to elucidate the molecular basis of KYNA protection against QUIN toxicity.

  12. Heterogeneous Cytoskeletal Force Distribution Delineates the Onset Ca2+ Influx Under Fluid Shear Stress in Astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad M. Maneshi

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Mechanical perturbations increase intracellular Ca2+ in cells, but the coupling of mechanical forces to the Ca2+ influx is not well understood. We used a microfluidic chamber driven with a high-speed pressure servo to generate defined fluid shear stress to cultured astrocytes, and simultaneously measured cytoskeletal forces using a force sensitive actinin optical sensor and intracellular Ca2+. Fluid shear generated non-uniform forces in actinin that critically depended on the stimulus rise time emphasizing the presence of viscoelasticity in the activating sequence. A short (ms shear pulse with fast rise time (2 ms produced an immediate increase in actinin tension at the upstream end of the cell with minimal changes at the downstream end. The onset of Ca2+ rise began at highly strained areas. In contrast to stimulus steps, slow ramp stimuli produced uniform forces throughout the cells and only a small Ca2+ response. The heterogeneity of force distribution is exaggerated in cells having fewer stress fibers and lower pre-tension in actinin. Disruption of cytoskeleton with cytochalasin-D (Cyt-D eliminated force gradients, and in those cells Ca2+ elevation started from the soma. Thus, Ca2+ influx with a mechanical stimulus depends on local stress within the cell and that is time dependent due to viscoelastic mechanics.

  13. 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

  14. Protein targeting to glycogen is a master regulator of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes

    OpenAIRE

    E. Ruchti; P.J. Roach; A.A. DePaoli-Roach; P.J. Magistretti; I. Allaman

    2016-01-01

    The storage and use of glycogen, the main energy reserve in the brain, is a metabolic feature of astrocytes. Glycogen synthesis is regulated by Protein Targeting to Glycogen (PTG), a member of specific glycogen-binding subunits of protein phosphatase-1 (PPP1). It positively regulates glycogen synthesis through de-phosphorylation of both glycogen synthase (activation) and glycogen phosphorylase (inactivation). In cultured astrocytes, PTG mRNA levels were previously shown to be enhanced by the ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Shilpa P; Sikdar, Sujit Kumar

    2007-12-01

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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Brian Roland; MacAulay, Nanna

    2017-10-01

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

  2. Control of the neurovascular coupling by nitric oxide-dependent regulation of astrocytic Ca2+ signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuel Francisco Muñoz

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Neuronal activity must be tightly coordinated with blood flow to keep proper brain function, which is achieved by a mechanism known as neurovascular coupling. Then, an increase in synaptic activity leads to a dilation of local parenchymal arterioles that matches the enhanced metabolic demand. Neurovascular coupling is orchestrated by astrocytes. These glial cells are located between neurons and the microvasculature, with the astrocytic endfeet ensheathing the vessels, which allows fine intercellular communication. The neurotransmitters released during neuronal activity reach astrocytic receptors and trigger a Ca2+ signaling that propagates to the endfeet, activating the release of vasoactive factors and arteriolar dilation. The astrocyte Ca2+ signaling is coordinated by gap junction channels and hemichannels formed by connexins (Cx43 and Cx30 and channels formed by pannexins (Panx-1. The neuronal activity-initiated Ca2+ waves are propagated among neighboring astrocytes directly via gap junctions or through ATP release via connexin hemichannels or pannexin channels. In addition, Ca2+ entry via connexin hemichannels or pannexin channels may participate in the regulation of the astrocyte signaling-mediated neurovascular coupling. Interestingly, nitric oxide (NO can activate connexin hemichannel by S-nitrosylation and the Ca2+-dependent NO-synthesizing enzymes endothelial NO synthase (eNOS and neuronal NOS (nNOS are expressed in astrocytes. Therefore, the astrocytic Ca2+ signaling triggered in neurovascular coupling may activate NO production, which, in turn, may lead to Ca2+ influx through hemichannel activation. Furthermore, NO release from the hemichannels located at astrocytic endfeet may contribute to the vasodilation of parenchymal arterioles. In this review, we discuss the mechanisms involved in the regulation of the astrocytic Ca2+ signaling that mediates neurovascular coupling, with a special emphasis in the possible participation of NO in

  3. Reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton via transcriptional regulation of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes by myocardin-related transcription factors (MRTFs/MAL/MKLs)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morita, Tsuyoshi; Mayanagi, Taira; Sobue, Kenji

    2007-01-01

    RhoA is a crucial regulator of stress fiber and focal adhesion formation through the activation of actin nucleation and polymerization. It also regulates the nuclear translocation of myocardin-related transcription factor-A and -B (MRTF-A/B, MAL or MKL 1/2), which are co-activators of serum response factor (SRF). In dominant-negative MRTF-A (DN-MRTF-A)-expressing NIH 3T3 cell lines, the expressions of several cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes were down-regulated, and the formation of stress fiber and focal adhesion was severely diminished. MRTF-A/B-knockdown cells also exhibited such cytoskeletal defects. In reporter assays, both RhoA and MRTF-A enhanced promoter activities of these genes in a CArG-box-dependent manner, and DN-MRTF-A inhibited the RhoA-mediated activation of these promoters. In dominant-negative RhoA (RhoA-N19)-expressing NIH 3T3 cell lines, the nuclear translocation of MRTF-A/B was predominantly prevented, resulting in the reduced expression of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion proteins. Further, constitutive-active MRTF-A/B increased the expression of endogenous cytoskeletal/focal adhesion proteins, and thereby rescued the defective phenotype of stress fibers and focal adhesions in RhoA-N19 expressing cells. These results indicate that MRTF-A/B act as pivotal mediators of stress fiber and focal adhesion formation via the transcriptional regulation of a subset of cytoskeletal/focal adhesion genes

  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. Astrocyte-specific regulation of hMeCP2 expression in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David L. Hess-Homeier

    2014-10-01

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

  6. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  8. Progressive supranuclear palsy: neuronal and glial cytoskeletal pathology in the higher order processing autonomic nuclei of the lower brainstem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rüb, U; Del Tredici, K; Schultz, C; de Vos, R A I; Jansen Steur, E N H; Arai, K; Braak, H

    2002-02-01

    The medial and lateral parabrachial nuclei (MPB, LPB), the gigantocellular reticular nucleus (GI), the raphes magnus (RMG) and raphes obscurus nuclei (ROB), as well as the intermediate reticular zone (IRZ) represent pivotal subordinate brainstem centres, all of which control autonomic functions. In this study, we investigated the occurrence and severity of the neuronal and glial cytoskeletal pathology in these six brainstem nuclei from 17 individuals with clinically diagnosed and neuropathologically confirmed progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP). The association between the severity of the pathology and the duration of the disease was investigated by means of correlation analysis. The brainstem nuclei in all of the PSP cases were affected by the neuronal cytoskeletal pathology, with the IRZ and GI regularly showing severe involvement, the MPB, RMG, and ROB marked involvement, and the LPB mild involvement. In the six nuclear greys studied, glial cells undergo alterations of their cytoskeleton on an irregular basis, whereby diseased oligodendrocytes predominantly presented as coiled bodies and affected astrocytes as thorn-shaped astrocytes. In all six nuclei, the severity of the neuronal or glial cytoskeletal pathology showed no correlation with the duration of PSP. In view of their functional role, the neuronal pathology in the nuclei studied offers a possible explanation for the autonomic dysfunctions that eventually develop in the course of PSP.

  9. Genes involved in the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are specifically regulated in cortical astrocytes following sleep deprivation in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petit, Jean-Marie; Gyger, Joël; Burlet-Godinot, Sophie; Fiumelli, Hubert; Martin, Jean-Luc; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2013-10-01

    There is growing evidence indicating that in order to meet the neuronal energy demands, astrocytes provide lactate as an energy substrate for neurons through a mechanism called "astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle" (ANLS). Since neuronal activity changes dramatically during vigilance states, we hypothesized that the ANLS may be regulated during the sleep-wake cycle. To test this hypothesis we investigated the expression of genes associated with the ANLS specifically in astrocytes following sleep deprivation. Astrocytes were purified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting from transgenic mice expressing the green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the human astrocytic GFAP-promoter. 6-hour instrumental sleep deprivation (TSD). Animal sleep research laboratory. Young (P23-P27) FVB/N-Tg (GFAP-GFP) 14Mes/J (Tg) mice of both sexes and 7-8 week male Tg and FVB/Nj mice. Basal sleep recordings and sleep deprivation achieved using a modified cage where animals were gently forced to move. Since Tg and FVB/Nj mice displayed a similar sleep-wake pattern, we performed a TSD in young Tg mice. Total RNA was extracted from the GFP-positive and GFP-negative cells sorted from cerebral cortex. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that levels of Glut1, α-2-Na/K pump, Glt1, and Ldha mRNAs were significantly increased following TSD in GFP-positive cells. In GFP-negative cells, a tendency to increase, although not significant, was observed for Ldha, Mct2, and α-3-Na/K pump mRNAs. This study shows that TSD induces the expression of genes associated with ANLS specifically in astrocytes, underlying the important role of astrocytes in the maintenance of the neuro-metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle.

  10. Genes involved in the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are specifcally regulated in cortical astrocytes following sleep deprivation in mice

    KAUST Repository

    Petit, Jean Marie

    2013-10-01

    Study Objectives: There is growing evidence indicating that in order to meet the neuronal energy demands, astrocytes provide lactate as an energy substrate for neurons through a mechanism called "astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle" (ANLS). Since neuronal activity changes dramatically during vigilance states, we hypothesized that the ANLS may be regulated during the sleep-wake cycle. To test this hypothesis we investigated the expression of genes associated with the ANLS specifcally in astrocytes following sleep deprivation. Astrocytes were purifed by fuorescence-activated cell sorting from transgenic mice expressing the green fuorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the human astrocytic GFAP-promoter. Design: 6-hour instrumental sleep deprivation (TSD). Setting: Animal sleep research laboratory. Participants: Young (P23-P27) FVB/N-Tg (GFAP-GFP) 14Mes/J (Tg) mice of both sexes and 7-8 week male Tg and FVB/Nj mice. Interventions: Basal sleep recordings and sleep deprivation achieved using a modifed cage where animals were gently forced to move. Measurements and Results: Since Tg and FVB/Nj mice displayed a similar sleep-wake pattern, we performed a TSD in young Tg mice. Total RNA was extracted from the GFP-positive and GFP-negative cells sorted from cerebral cortex. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that levels of Glut1, a-2-Na/K pump, Glt1, and Ldha mRNAs were signifcantly increased following TSD in GFP-positive cells. In GFP-negative cells, a tendency to increase, although not signifcant, was observed for Ldha, Mct2, and α-3-Na/K pump mRNAs. Conclusions: This study shows that TSD induces the expression of genes associated with ANLS specifcally in astrocytes, underlying the important role of astrocytes in the maintenance of the neuro-metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle.

  11. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F

    2016-07-01

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

  14. The AMP-activated protein kinase is involved in the regulation of ketone body production by astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blázquez, C; Woods, A; de Ceballos, M L; Carling, D; Guzmán, M

    1999-10-01

    The possible role of the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a highly conserved stress-activated kinase, in the regulation of ketone body production by astrocytes was studied. AMPK activity in rat cortical astrocytes was three times higher than in rat cortical neurons. AMPK in astrocytes was shown to be functionally active. Thus, incubation of astrocytes with 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleoside (AICAR), a cell-permeable activator of AMPK, stimulated both ketogenesis from palmitate and carnitine palmitoyltransferase I. This was concomitant to a decrease of intracellular malonyl-CoA levels and an inhibition of acetyl-CoA carboxylase/fatty acid synthesis and 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase/cholesterol synthesis. Moreover, in microdialysis experiments AICAR was shown to stimulate brain ketogenesis markedly. The effect of chemical hypoxia on AMPK and the ketogenic pathway was studied subsequently. Incubation of astrocytes with azide led to a remarkable drop of fatty acid beta-oxidation. However, activation of AMPK during hypoxia compensated the depression of beta-oxidation, thereby sustaining ketone body production. This effect seemed to rely on the cascade hypoxia --> increase of the AMP/ATP ratio --> AMPK stimulation --> acetyl-CoA carboxylase inhibition --> decrease of malonyl-CoA concentration --> carnitine palmitoyltransferase I deinhibition --> enhanced ketogenesis. Furthermore, incubation of neurons with azide blunted lactate oxidation, but not 3-hydroxybutyrate oxidation. Results show that (a) AMPK plays an active role in the regulation of ketone body production by astrocytes, and (b) ketone bodies produced by astrocytes during hypoxia might be a substrate for neuronal oxidative metabolism.

  15. 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.

  16. Novelty-induced activity-regulated cytoskeletal-associated protein (Arc) expression in frontal cortex requires serotonin 2A receptor activation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Santini, Martin; Klein, A B; El-Sayed, M

    2011-01-01

    environment. As an output of FC activation we measured expression of activity-regulated cytoskeletal-associated protein (Arc). Novelty-exposure (open-field arena) robustly up-regulated FC Arc mRNA expression (∼160%) in mice compared to home-cage controls. This response was inhibited with the 5-HT(2A...

  17. Novelty-induced activity-regulated cytoskeletal-associated protein (Arc) expression in frontal cortex requires serotonin 2A receptor activation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Santini, Martin; Klein, A B; El-Sayed, M

    2011-01-01

    environment. As an output of FC activation we measured expression of activity-regulated cytoskeletal-associated protein (Arc). Novelty-exposure (open-field arena) robustly up-regulated FC Arc mRNA expression (~160%) in mice compared to home-cage controls. This response was inhibited with the 5-HT(2A...

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. p21-Activated kinase (PAK regulates cytoskeletal reorganization and directional migration in human neutrophils.

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    Asako Itakura

    Full Text Available Neutrophils serve as a first line of defense in innate immunity owing in part to their ability to rapidly migrate towards chemotactic factors derived from invading pathogens. As a migratory function, neutrophil chemotaxis is regulated by the Rho family of small GTPases. However, the mechanisms by which Rho GTPases orchestrate cytoskeletal dynamics in migrating neutrophils remain ill-defined. In this study, we characterized the role of p21-activated kinase (PAK downstream of Rho GTPases in cytoskeletal remodeling and chemotactic processes of human neutrophils. We found that PAK activation occurred upon stimulation of neutrophils with f-Met-Leu-Phe (fMLP, and PAK accumulated at the actin-rich leading edge of stimulated neutrophils, suggesting a role for PAK in Rac-dependent actin remodeling. Treatment with the pharmacological PAK inhibitor, PF3758309, abrogated the integrity of RhoA-mediated actomyosin contractility and surface adhesion. Moreover, inhibition of PAK activity impaired neutrophil morphological polarization and directional migration under a gradient of fMLP, and was associated with dysregulated Ca(2+ signaling. These results suggest that PAK serves as an important effector of Rho-family GTPases in neutrophil cytoskeletal reorganization, and plays a key role in driving efficient directional migration of human neutrophils.

  1. Cleavage of Hyaluronan and CD44 Adhesion Molecule Regulate Astrocyte Morphology via Rac1 Signalling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Konopka

    Full Text Available Communication of cells with their extracellular environment is crucial to fulfill their function in physiological and pathophysiological conditions. The literature data provide evidence that such a communication is also important in case of astrocytes. Mechanisms that contribute to the interaction between astrocytes and extracellular matrix (ECM proteins are still poorly understood. Hyaluronan is the main component of ECM in the brain, where its major receptor protein CD44 is expressed by a subset of astrocytes. Considering the fact that functions of astrocytes are tightly coupled with changes in their morphology (e.g.: glutamate clearance in the synaptic cleft, migration, astrogliosis, we investigated the influence of hyaluronan cleavage by hyaluronidase, knockdown of CD44 by specific shRNA and CD44 overexpression on astrocyte morphology. Our results show that hyaluronidase treatment, as well as knockdown of CD44, in astrocytes result in a "stellate"-like morphology, whereas overexpression of CD44 causes an increase in cell body size and changes the shape of astrocytes into flattened cells. Moreover, as a dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is supposed to be responsible for morphological changes of cells, and this reorganization is controlled by small GTPases of the Rho family, we hypothesized that GTPase Rac1 acts as a downstream effector for hyaluronan and CD44 in astrocytes. We used FRET-based biosensor and a dominant negative mutant of Rac1 to investigate the involvement of Rac1 activity in hyaluronidase- and CD44-dependent morphological changes of astrocytes. Both, hyaluronidase treatment and knockdown of CD44, enhances Rac1 activity while overexpression of CD44 reduces the activity state in astrocytes. Furthermore, morphological changes were blocked by specific inhibition of Rac1 activity. These findings indicate for the first time that regulation of Rac1 activity is responsible for hyaluronidase and CD44-driven morphological

  2. Cleavage of Hyaluronan and CD44 Adhesion Molecule Regulate Astrocyte Morphology via Rac1 Signalling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konopka, Anna; Zeug, Andre; Skupien, Anna; Kaza, Beata; Mueller, Franziska; Chwedorowicz, Agnieszka; Ponimaskin, Evgeni; Wilczynski, Grzegorz M; Dzwonek, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    Communication of cells with their extracellular environment is crucial to fulfill their function in physiological and pathophysiological conditions. The literature data provide evidence that such a communication is also important in case of astrocytes. Mechanisms that contribute to the interaction between astrocytes and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins are still poorly understood. Hyaluronan is the main component of ECM in the brain, where its major receptor protein CD44 is expressed by a subset of astrocytes. Considering the fact that functions of astrocytes are tightly coupled with changes in their morphology (e.g.: glutamate clearance in the synaptic cleft, migration, astrogliosis), we investigated the influence of hyaluronan cleavage by hyaluronidase, knockdown of CD44 by specific shRNA and CD44 overexpression on astrocyte morphology. Our results show that hyaluronidase treatment, as well as knockdown of CD44, in astrocytes result in a "stellate"-like morphology, whereas overexpression of CD44 causes an increase in cell body size and changes the shape of astrocytes into flattened cells. Moreover, as a dynamic reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton is supposed to be responsible for morphological changes of cells, and this reorganization is controlled by small GTPases of the Rho family, we hypothesized that GTPase Rac1 acts as a downstream effector for hyaluronan and CD44 in astrocytes. We used FRET-based biosensor and a dominant negative mutant of Rac1 to investigate the involvement of Rac1 activity in hyaluronidase- and CD44-dependent morphological changes of astrocytes. Both, hyaluronidase treatment and knockdown of CD44, enhances Rac1 activity while overexpression of CD44 reduces the activity state in astrocytes. Furthermore, morphological changes were blocked by specific inhibition of Rac1 activity. These findings indicate for the first time that regulation of Rac1 activity is responsible for hyaluronidase and CD44-driven morphological changes of

  3. 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...

  4. 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.

  5. Astrocytes regulate heterogeneity of presynaptic strengths in hippocampal networks

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Tlx acts as a proangiogenic switch by regulating extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices in retinal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uemura, Akiyoshi; Kusuhara, Sentaro; Wiegand, Stanley J; Yu, Ruth T; Nishikawa, Shin-ichi

    2006-02-01

    In response to hypoxia, hypoxia-inducible factors act as the primary proangiogenic triggers by regulating transcription levels of target genes, including VEGF. However, little is known about the specific factors that control other components of the angiogenic process, particularly formation of matrix scaffolds that promote adhesion and migration of endothelial cells. We show that in the postnatal mouse retina, the orphan nuclear receptor tailless (Tlx) is strongly expressed in the proangiogenic astrocytes, which secrete VEGF and fibronectin. Tlx expression by retinal astrocytes is controlled by oxygen concentration and rapidly downregulated upon contact with blood vessels. In mice null for Tlx, retinal astrocytes maintain VEGF expression; however, the extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices by astrocytes is severely impaired, leading to defective scaffold formation and a complete failure of normal retinal vascular development. This work identifies Tlx as an essential component of the molecular network involved in the hypoxia-inducible proangiogenic switch in retinal astrocytes.

  7. 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.

  8. Alternative cytoskeletal landscapes: cytoskeletal novelty and evolution in basal excavate protists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Scott C.; Paredez, Alexander R.

    2016-01-01

    Microbial eukaryotes encompass the majority of eukaryotic evolutionary and cytoskeletal diversity. The cytoskeletal complexity observed in multicellular organisms appears to be an expansion of components present in genomes of diverse microbial eukaryotes such as the basal lineage of flagellates, the Excavata. Excavate protists have complex and diverse cytoskeletal architectures and life cycles – essentially alternative cytoskeletal “landscapes” – yet still possess conserved microtubule- and actin-associated proteins. Comparative genomic analyses have revealed that a subset of excavates, however, lack many canonical actin-binding proteins central to actin cytoskeleton function in other eukaryotes. Overall, excavates possess numerous uncharacterized and “hypothetical” genes, and may represent an undiscovered reservoir of novel cytoskeletal genes and cytoskeletal mechanisms. The continued development of molecular genetic tools in these complex microbial eukaryotes will undoubtedly contribute to our overall understanding of cytoskeletal diversity and evolution. PMID:23312067

  9. The regulation of cytoskeletal and liver-specific gene expression during liver regeneration and primary hepatocyte culture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robinson, G.S.

    1989-01-01

    The focus of this dissertation is to determine what role(s) the extracellular matrix and expression of certain cytoskeletal genes play in the regulation of hepatocyte growth and the maintenance of a differential state. The expression of several cytoskeletal and liver-specific genes was examined during liver regeneration and in hepatocyte cultures maintained in a hormonally-defined, serum-free medium and plated on two different matrices: rat tail collagen and the EHS matrix. During liver regeneration and in hepatocytes cultured on rat tail collagen, there was a dramatic increase in tubulin mRNA levels coincident with but not linked to DNA synthesis. The message levels for other cytoskeletal genes similarly increased, while a decrease was observed in the mRNA levels of the liver-specific genes, serum albumin and alpha 1 inhibitor III. Hepatocytes cultured on the EHS matrix resulted in the maintenance of low levels of cytoskeletal gene expression and high levels of liver-specific gene expression, similar to that observed in the normal liver. Results from subcellar fractionation and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of 35 S-labelled proteins paralleled the results seen at the mRNA level. Preliminary work suggests that microtubule organization may play a role in the expression of the liver-specific genes which encode secreted proteins. These studies, which compare hepatocytes cultured on collagen or the EHS matrix gel, reveal that both cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions play a major role in the maintenance of the differential phenotype in hepatocytes

  10. Insulin-like growth factor receptor signaling regulates working memory, mitochondrial metabolism, and amyloid-β uptake in astrocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sreemathi Logan

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective: A decline in mitochondrial function and biogenesis as well as increased reactive oxygen species (ROS are important determinants of aging. With advancing age, there is a concomitant reduction in circulating levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1 that is closely associated with neuronal aging and neurodegeneration. In this study, we investigated the effect of the decline in IGF-1 signaling with age on astrocyte mitochondrial metabolism and astrocyte function and its association with learning and memory. Methods: Learning and memory was assessed using the radial arm water maze in young and old mice as well as tamoxifen-inducible astrocyte-specific knockout of IGFR (GFAP-CreTAM/igfrf/f. The impact of IGF-1 signaling on mitochondrial function was evaluated using primary astrocyte cultures from igfrf/f mice using AAV-Cre mediated knockdown using Oroboros respirometry and Seahorse assays. Results: Our results indicate that a reduction in IGF-1 receptor (IGFR expression with age is associated with decline in hippocampal-dependent learning and increased gliosis. Astrocyte-specific knockout of IGFR also induced impairments in working memory. Using primary astrocyte cultures, we show that reducing IGF-1 signaling via a 30–50% reduction IGFR expression, comparable to the physiological changes in IGF-1 that occur with age, significantly impaired ATP synthesis. IGFR deficient astrocytes also displayed altered mitochondrial structure and function and increased mitochondrial ROS production associated with the induction of an antioxidant response. However, IGFR deficient astrocytes were more sensitive to H2O2-induced cytotoxicity. Moreover, IGFR deficient astrocytes also showed significantly impaired glucose and Aβ uptake, both critical functions of astrocytes in the brain. Conclusions: Regulation of astrocytic mitochondrial function and redox status by IGF-1 is essential to maintain astrocytic function and coordinate hippocampal

  11. Andrographolide attenuates LPS-stimulated up-regulation of C-C and C-X-C motif chemokines in rodent cortex and primary astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Siew Ying; Tan, Michelle G K; Banks, William A; Wong, W S Fred; Wong, Peter T-H; Lai, Mitchell K P

    2016-02-09

    Andrographolide is the major bioactive compound isolated from Andrographis paniculata, a native South Asian herb used medicinally for its anti-inflammatory properties. In this study, we aimed to assess andrographolide's potential utility as an anti-neuroinflammatory therapeutic. The effects of andrographolide on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced chemokine up-regulation both in mouse cortex and in cultured primary astrocytes were measured, including cytokine profiling, gene expression, and, in cultured astrocytes, activation of putative signaling regulators. Orally administered andrographolide significantly attenuated mouse cortical chemokine levels from the C-C and C-X-C subfamilies. Similarly, andrographolide abrogated a range of LPS-induced chemokines as well as tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α in astrocytes. In astrocytes, the inhibitory actions of andrographolide on chemokine and TNF-α up-regulation appeared to be mediated by nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) or c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation. These results suggest that andrographolide may be useful as a therapeutic for neuroinflammatory diseases, especially those characterized by chemokine dysregulation.

  12. Cellular automata in cytoskeletal lattices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, S A; Watt, R C; Hameroff, S R

    1984-01-01

    Cellular automata (CA) activities could mediate biological regulation and information processing via nonlinear electrodynamic effects in cytoskeletal lattice arrays. Frohlich coherent oscillations and other nonlinear mechanisms may effect discrete 10/sup -10/ to 10/sup -11/ s interval events which result in dynamic patterns in biolattices such as cylindrical protein polymers: microtubules (MT). Structural geometry and electrostatic forces of MT subunit dipole oscillations suggest neighbor rules among the hexagonally packed protein subunits. Computer simulations using these suggested rules and MT structural geometry demonstrate CA activities including dynamical and stable self-organizing patterns, oscillators, and traveling gliders. CA activities in MT and other cytoskeletal lattices may have important biological regulatory functions. 23 references, 6 figures, 1 table.

  13. Regulation of NF-κB activity in astrocytes: effects of flavonoids at dietary-relevant concentrations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spilsbury, Alison; Vauzour, David; Spencer, Jeremy P.E.; Rattray, Marcus

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► We tested the hypothesis that low concentrations of flavonoids inhibit NF-κB in astrocytes. ► Primary cultured astrocytes possess a functional κB-system, measured using luciferase assays. ► Seven flavonoids (100 nM–1 μM) failed to reduce NF-κB activity in astrocytes. ► Four flavonoids (100 nM–1 μM) failed to reduce TNFa-stimulated NF-κB activity in astrocytes. ► (−)-Epicatechin did not regulate nuclear translocation of the NF-κB subunit, p65. -- Abstract: Neuroinflammation plays an important role in the progression of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Sustained activation of nuclear transcription factor κB (NF-κB) is thought to play an important role in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders. Flavonoids have been shown to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and we investigated whether flavonoids, at submicromolar concentrations relevant to their bioavailability from the diet, were able to modulate NF-κB signalling in astrocytes. Using luciferase reporter assays, we found that tumour necrosis factor (TNFα, 150 ng/ml) increased NF-κB-mediated transcription in primary cultures of mouse cortical astrocytes, which was abolished on co-transfection of a dominant-negative IκBα construct. In addition, TNFα increased nuclear localisation of p65 as shown by immunocytochemistry. To investigate potential flavonoid modulation of NF-κB activity, astrocytes were treated with flavonoids from different classes; flavan-3-ols ((−)-epicatechin and (+)-catechin), flavones (luteolin and chrysin), a flavonol (kaempferol) or the flavanones (naringenin and hesperetin) at dietary-relevant concentrations (0.1–1 μM) for 18 h. None of the flavonoids modulated constitutive or TNFα-induced NF-κB activity. Therefore, we conclude that NF-κB signalling in astrocytes is not a major target for flavonoids.

  14. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-12-27

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

  16. PTP-PEST controls EphA3 activation and ephrin-induced cytoskeletal remodelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mansour, Mariam; Nievergall, Eva; Gegenbauer, Kristina; Llerena, Carmen; Atapattu, Lakmali; Hallé, Maxime; Tremblay, Michel L; Janes, Peter W; Lackmann, Martin

    2016-01-15

    Eph receptors and their corresponding membrane-bound ephrin ligands regulate cell positioning and establish tissue patterns during embryonic and oncogenic development. Emerging evidence suggests that assembly of polymeric Eph signalling clusters relies on cytoskeletal reorganisation and underlies regulation by protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). PTP-PEST (also known as PTPN12) is a central regulator of actin cytoskeletal dynamics. Here, we demonstrate that an N-terminal fragment of PTP-PEST, generated through an ephrinA5-triggered and spatially confined cleavage mediated by caspase-3, attenuates EphA3 receptor activation and its internalisation. Isolation of EphA3 receptor signalling clusters within intact plasma membrane fragments obtained by detergent-free cell fractionation reveals that stimulation of cells with ephrin triggers effective recruitment of this catalytically active truncated form of PTP-PEST together with key cytoskeletal and focal adhesion proteins. Importantly, modulation of actin polymerisation using pharmacological and dominant-negative approaches affects EphA3 phosphorylation in a similar manner to overexpression of PTP-PEST. We conclude that PTP-PEST regulates EphA3 activation both by affecting cytoskeletal remodelling and through its direct action as a PTP controlling EphA3 phosphorylation, indicating its multifaceted regulation of Eph signalling. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  17. Adenosine Receptors Differentially Regulate the Expression of Regulators of G-Protein Signalling (RGS 2, 3 and 4 in Astrocyte-Like Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Till Nicolas Eusemann

    Full Text Available The "regulators of g-protein signalling" (RGS comprise a large family of proteins that limit by virtue of their GTPase accelerating protein domain the signal transduction of G-protein coupled receptors. RGS proteins have been implicated in various neuropsychiatric diseases such as schizophrenia, drug abuse, depression and anxiety and aggressive behaviour. Since conditions associated with a large increase of adenosine in the brain such as seizures or ischemia were reported to modify the expression of some RGS proteins we hypothesized that adenosine might regulate RGS expression in neural cells. We measured the expression of RGS-2,-3, and -4 in both transformed glia cells (human U373 MG astrocytoma cells and in primary rat astrocyte cultures stimulated with adenosine agonists. Expression of RGS-2 mRNA as well as RGS2 protein was increased up to 30-fold by adenosine agonists in astrocytes. The order of potency of agonists and the blockade by the adenosine A2B-antagonist MRS1706 indicated that this effect was largely mediated by adenosine A2B receptors. However, a smaller effect was observed due to activation of adenosine A2A receptors. In astrocytoma cells adenosine agonists elicited an increase in RGS-2 expression solely mediated by A2B receptors. Expression of RGS-3 was inhibited by adenosine agonists in both astrocytoma cells and astrocytes. However while this effect was mediated by A2B receptors in astrocytoma cells it was mediated by A2A receptors in astrocytes as assessed by the order of potency of agonists and selective blockade by the specific antagonists MRS1706 and ZM241385 respectively. RGS-4 expression was inhibited in astrocytoma cells but enhanced in astrocytes by adenosine agonists.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Regulation of NF-{kappa}B activity in astrocytes: effects of flavonoids at dietary-relevant concentrations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spilsbury, Alison [Reading School of Pharmacy, University of Reading, Reading RG6 6UB (United Kingdom); Vauzour, David; Spencer, Jeremy P.E. [Molecular Nutrition Group, Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics, School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy, University of Reading, Reading RG6 6AP (United Kingdom); Rattray, Marcus, E-mail: m.a.n.rattray@reading.ac.uk [Reading School of Pharmacy, University of Reading, Reading RG6 6UB (United Kingdom)

    2012-02-17

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We tested the hypothesis that low concentrations of flavonoids inhibit NF-{kappa}B in astrocytes. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Primary cultured astrocytes possess a functional {kappa}B-system, measured using luciferase assays. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Seven flavonoids (100 nM-1 {mu}M) failed to reduce NF-{kappa}B activity in astrocytes. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Four flavonoids (100 nM-1 {mu}M) failed to reduce TNFa-stimulated NF-{kappa}B activity in astrocytes. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer (-)-Epicatechin did not regulate nuclear translocation of the NF-{kappa}B subunit, p65. -- Abstract: Neuroinflammation plays an important role in the progression of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Sustained activation of nuclear transcription factor {kappa}B (NF-{kappa}B) is thought to play an important role in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders. Flavonoids have been shown to possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and we investigated whether flavonoids, at submicromolar concentrations relevant to their bioavailability from the diet, were able to modulate NF-{kappa}B signalling in astrocytes. Using luciferase reporter assays, we found that tumour necrosis factor (TNF{alpha}, 150 ng/ml) increased NF-{kappa}B-mediated transcription in primary cultures of mouse cortical astrocytes, which was abolished on co-transfection of a dominant-negative I{kappa}B{alpha} construct. In addition, TNF{alpha} increased nuclear localisation of p65 as shown by immunocytochemistry. To investigate potential flavonoid modulation of NF-{kappa}B activity, astrocytes were treated with flavonoids from different classes; flavan-3-ols ((-)-epicatechin and (+)-catechin), flavones (luteolin and chrysin), a flavonol (kaempferol) or the flavanones (naringenin and hesperetin) at dietary-relevant concentrations (0.1-1 {mu}M) for 18 h. None of the flavonoids modulated constitutive or

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  3. 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.

  4. Astrocytes Control Neuronal Excitability in the Nucleus Accumbens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. 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.

  6. Angiotensin II Type 1 receptor (AT1) signaling in astrocytes regulates synaptic degeneration-induced leukocyte entry to the central nervous system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Füchtbauer, L; Groth-Rasmussen, Maria; Holm, Thomas Hellesøe

    2011-01-01

    Astrocytes are the major cellular component of the blood-brain barrier glia limitans and act as regulators of leukocyte infiltration via chemokine expression. We have studied angiotensin-II receptor Type 1 (AT1) and related NF-κB signaling in astrocytes. Angiotensin II derives from cleavage of an...

  7. Down-regulation of transcription of the proapoptotic gene BNip3 in cultured astrocytes by murine coronavirus infection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cai Yingyun; Liu Yin; Yu Dongdong; Zhang Xuming

    2003-01-01

    Murine coronavirus mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) causes encephalitis and demyelination in the central nervous system of susceptible rodents. Astrocytes are the major target for MHV persistence. However, the mechanisms by which astrocytes survive MHV infection and permit viral persistence are not known. Here we performed DNA microarray analysis on differential gene expression in astrocyte DBT cells by MHV infection and found that the mRNA of the proapoptotic gene BNip3 was significantly decreased following MHV infection. This finding was further confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, Western blot analysis, and BNip3-promoter-luciferase reporter system. Interestingly, infection with live and ultraviolet light-inactivated viruses equally repressed BNip3 expression, indicating that the down-regulation of BNip3 expression does not require virus replication and is mediated during cell entry. Furthermore, treatment of cells with chloroquine, which blocks the acidification of endosomes, significantly inhibited the repression of the BNip3 promoter activity induced by the acidic pH-dependent MHV mutant OBLV60, which enters cells via endocytosis, indicating that the down-regulation of BNip3 expression is mediated by fusion between viral envelope and cell membranes during entry. Deletion analysis showed that the sequence between nucleotides 262 and 550 of the 588-base-pair BNip3 promoter is necessary and sufficient for driving the BNip3 expression and that it contains signals that are responsible for MHV-induced down-regulation of BNip3 expression in DBT cells. These results may provide insights into the mechanisms by which MHV evades host antiviral defense and promotes cell survival, thereby allowing its persistence in the host astrocytes

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea eGoudriaan

    2014-01-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. A tale of two stories: astrocyte regulation of synaptic depression and facilitation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurizio De Pittà

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Short-term presynaptic plasticity designates variations of the amplitude of synaptic information transfer whereby the amount of neurotransmitter released upon presynaptic stimulation changes over seconds as a function of the neuronal firing activity. While a consensus has emerged that the resulting decrease (depression and/or increase (facilitation of the synapse strength are crucial to neuronal computations, their modes of expression in vivo remain unclear. Recent experimental studies have reported that glial cells, particularly astrocytes in the hippocampus, are able to modulate short-term plasticity but the mechanism of such a modulation is poorly understood. Here, we investigate the characteristics of short-term plasticity modulation by astrocytes using a biophysically realistic computational model. Mean-field analysis of the model, supported by intensive numerical simulations, unravels that astrocytes may mediate counterintuitive effects. Depending on the expressed presynaptic signaling pathways, astrocytes may globally inhibit or potentiate the synapse: the amount of released neurotransmitter in the presence of the astrocyte is transiently smaller or larger than in its absence. But this global effect usually coexists with the opposite local effect on paired pulses: with release-decreasing astrocytes most paired pulses become facilitated, namely the amount of neurotransmitter released upon spike i+1 is larger than that at spike i, while paired-pulse depression becomes prominent under release-increasing astrocytes. Moreover, we show that the frequency of astrocytic intracellular Ca(2+ oscillations controls the effects of the astrocyte on short-term synaptic plasticity. Our model explains several experimental observations yet unsolved, and uncovers astrocytic gliotransmission as a possible transient switch between short-term paired-pulse depression and facilitation. This possibility has deep implications on the processing of neuronal spikes

  12. The contribution of astrocytes to the regulation of cerebral blood flow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clare eHowarth

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In order to maintain normal brain function, it is critical that cerebral blood flow (CBF is matched to neuronal metabolic needs. Accordingly, blood flow is increased to areas where neurons are more active (a response termed functional hyperemia. The tight relationships between neuronal activation, glial cell activity, cerebral energy metabolism and the cerebral vasculature, known as neurometabolic and neurovascular coupling, underpin functional MRI (fMRI signals but are incompletely understood. As functional imaging techniques, particularly BOLD fMRI, become more widely used, their utility hinges on our ability to accurately and reliably interpret the findings. A growing body of data demonstrates that astrocytes can serve as a ‘bridge’, relaying information on the level of neural activity to blood vessels in order to coordinate oxygen and glucose delivery with the energy demands of the tissue. It is widely assumed that calcium-dependent release of vasoactive substances by astrocytes results in arteriole dilation and the increased blood flow which accompanies neuronal activity. However, the signaling molecules responsible for this communication between astrocytes and blood vessels are yet to be definitively confirmed. Indeed, there is controversy over whether activity-induced changes in astrocyte calcium are widespread and fast enough to elicit such functional hyperemia responses. In this review, I will summarise the evidence which has convincingly demonstrated that astrocytes are able to modify the diameter of cerebral arterioles. I will discuss the prevalence, presence and timing of stimulus-induced astrocyte calcium transients and describe the evidence for and against the role of calcium-dependent formation and release of vasoactive substances by astrocytes. I will also review alternative mechanisms of astrocyte-evoked changes in arteriole diameter and consider the questions which remain to be answered in this exciting area of research.

  13. 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.

  14. Regulation of neuron–astrocyte metabolic coupling across the sleep–wake cycle

    OpenAIRE

    Petit, J.-M.; Magistretti, P.J.

    2016-01-01

    Over the last thirty years, a growing number of studies showed that astrocytes play a pivotal role in the energy support to synapses. More precisely, astrocytes adjust energy production to neuronal energy needs through different mechanisms grouped under the term "neurometabolic coupling" (NMC). In this review we describe these mechanisms of coupling and how they involve astrocytes. From a physiological point of view, these mechanisms of coupling are particularly important to ensure normal syn...

  15. Astrocyte-neuron crosstalk regulates the expression and subcellular localization of carbohydrate metabolism enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamczur, Piotr; Borsuk, Borys; Paszko, Jadwiga; Sas, Zuzanna; Mozrzymas, Jerzy; Wiśniewski, Jacek R; Gizak, Agnieszka; Rakus, Dariusz

    2015-02-01

    Astrocytes releasing glucose- and/or glycogen-derived lactate and glutamine play a crucial role in shaping neuronal function and plasticity. Little is known, however, how metabolic functions of astrocytes, e.g., their ability to degrade glucosyl units, are affected by the presence of neurons. To address this issue we carried out experiments which demonstrated that co-culturing of rat hippocampal astrocytes with neurons significantly elevates the level of mRNA and protein for crucial enzymes of glycolysis (phosphofructokinase, aldolase, and pyruvate kinase), glycogen metabolism (glycogen synthase and glycogen phosphorylase), and glutamine synthetase in astrocytes. Simultaneously, the decrease of the capability of neurons to metabolize glucose and glutamine is observed. We provide evidence that neurons alter the expression of astrocytic enzymes by secretion of as yet unknown molecule(s) into the extracellular fluid. Moreover, our data demonstrate that almost all studied enzymes may localize in astrocytic nuclei and this localization is affected by the co-culturing with neurons which also reduces proliferative activity of astrocytes. Our results provide the first experimental evidence that the astrocyte-neuron crosstalk substantially affects the expression of basal metabolic enzymes in the both types of cells and influences their subcellular localization in astrocytes. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-08-11

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

  18. Complete Neuron-Astrocyte Interaction Model: Digital Multiplierless Design and Networking Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haghiri, Saeed; Ahmadi, Arash; Saif, Mehrdad

    2017-02-01

    Glial cells, also known as neuroglia or glia, are non-neuronal cells providing support and protection for neurons in the central nervous system (CNS). They also act as supportive cells in the brain. Among a variety of glial cells, the star-shaped glial cells, i.e., astrocytes, are the largest cell population in the brain. The important role of astrocyte such as neuronal synchronization, synaptic information regulation, feedback to neural activity and extracellular regulation make the astrocytes play a vital role in brain disease. This paper presents a modified complete neuron-astrocyte interaction model that is more suitable for efficient and large scale biological neural network realization on digital platforms. Simulation results show that the modified complete interaction model can reproduce biological-like behavior of the original neuron-astrocyte mechanism. The modified interaction model is investigated in terms of digital realization feasibility and cost targeting a low cost hardware implementation. Networking behavior of this interaction is investigated and compared between two cases: i) the neuron spiking mechanism without astrocyte effects, and ii) the effect of astrocyte in regulating the neurons behavior and synaptic transmission via controlling the LTP and LTD processes. Hardware implementation on FPGA shows that the modified model mimics the main mechanism of neuron-astrocyte communication with higher performance and considerably lower hardware overhead cost compared with the original interaction model.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murai, Keith K; Pasquale, Elena B

    2011-11-01

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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Glutamate metabolism is down-regulated in astrocytes during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hardin-Pouzet, H; Krakowski, M; Bourbonnière, L

    1997-01-01

    dehydrogenase (GDH) expression were dramatically reduced. These two astrocytic enzymes are responsible for degradation of glutamate, the most abundant excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. Since elevated levels of glutamate may be neurotoxic, we propose that the decreased capacity of astrocytes...... to metabolize glutamate may contribute to EAE pathology....

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Cytoskeletal Regulation Dominates Temperature-Sensitive Proteomic Changes of Hibernation in Forebrain of 13-Lined Ground Squirrels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hindle, Allyson G.; Martin, Sandra L.

    2013-01-01

    13-lined ground squirrels, Ictidomys tridecemlineatus, are obligate hibernators that transition annually between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy – wherein they exploit episodic torpor bouts. Despite cerebral ischemia during torpor and rapid reperfusion during arousal, hibernator brains resist damage and the animals emerge neurologically intact each spring. We hypothesized that protein changes in the brain underlie winter neuroprotection. To identify candidate proteins, we applied a sensitive 2D gel electrophoresis method to quantify protein differences among forebrain extracts prepared from ground squirrels in two summer, four winter and fall transition states. Proteins that differed among groups were identified using LC-MS/MS. Only 84 protein spots varied significantly among the defined states of hibernation. Protein changes in the forebrain proteome fell largely into two reciprocal patterns with a strong body temperature dependence. The importance of body temperature was tested in animals from the fall; these fall animals use torpor sporadically with body temperatures mirroring ambient temperatures between 4 and 21°C as they navigate the transition between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy. Unlike cold-torpid fall ground squirrels, warm-torpid individuals strongly resembled the homeotherms, indicating that the changes observed in torpid hibernators are defined by body temperature, not torpor per se. Metabolic enzymes were largely unchanged despite varied metabolic activity across annual and torpor-arousal cycles. Instead, the majority of the observed changes were cytoskeletal proteins and their regulators. While cytoskeletal structural proteins tended to differ seasonally, i.e., between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy, their regulatory proteins were more strongly affected by body temperature. Changes in the abundance of various isoforms of the microtubule assembly and disassembly regulatory proteins dihydropyrimidinase

  9. Cytoskeletal regulation dominates temperature-sensitive proteomic changes of hibernation in forebrain of 13-lined ground squirrels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allyson G Hindle

    Full Text Available 13-lined ground squirrels, Ictidomys tridecemlineatus, are obligate hibernators that transition annually between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy - wherein they exploit episodic torpor bouts. Despite cerebral ischemia during torpor and rapid reperfusion during arousal, hibernator brains resist damage and the animals emerge neurologically intact each spring. We hypothesized that protein changes in the brain underlie winter neuroprotection. To identify candidate proteins, we applied a sensitive 2D gel electrophoresis method to quantify protein differences among forebrain extracts prepared from ground squirrels in two summer, four winter and fall transition states. Proteins that differed among groups were identified using LC-MS/MS. Only 84 protein spots varied significantly among the defined states of hibernation. Protein changes in the forebrain proteome fell largely into two reciprocal patterns with a strong body temperature dependence. The importance of body temperature was tested in animals from the fall; these fall animals use torpor sporadically with body temperatures mirroring ambient temperatures between 4 and 21°C as they navigate the transition between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy. Unlike cold-torpid fall ground squirrels, warm-torpid individuals strongly resembled the homeotherms, indicating that the changes observed in torpid hibernators are defined by body temperature, not torpor per se. Metabolic enzymes were largely unchanged despite varied metabolic activity across annual and torpor-arousal cycles. Instead, the majority of the observed changes were cytoskeletal proteins and their regulators. While cytoskeletal structural proteins tended to differ seasonally, i.e., between summer homeothermy and winter heterothermy, their regulatory proteins were more strongly affected by body temperature. Changes in the abundance of various isoforms of the microtubule assembly and disassembly regulatory proteins

  10. Dynamic inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission by astrocyte-derived ATP in hippocampal cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koizumi, Schuichi; Fujishita, Kayoko; Tsuda, Makoto; Shigemoto-Mogami, Yukari; Inoue, Kazuhide

    2003-09-01

    Originally ascribed passive roles in the CNS, astrocytes are now known to have an active role in the regulation of synaptic transmission. Neuronal activity can evoke Ca2+ transients in astrocytes, and Ca2+ transients in astrocytes can evoke changes in neuronal activity. The excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate has been shown to mediate such bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. We demonstrate here that ATP, a primary mediator of intercellular Ca2+ signaling among astrocytes, also mediates intercellular signaling between astrocytes and neurons in hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes evoked Ca2+ waves mediated by the release of ATP and the activation of P2 receptors. Mechanically evoked Ca2+ waves led to decreased excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmission in an ATP-dependent manner. Exogenous application of ATP does not affect postsynaptic glutamatergic responses but decreased presynaptic exocytotic events. Finally, we show that astrocytes exhibit spontaneous Ca2+ waves mediated by extracellular ATP and that inhibition of these Ca2+ responses enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission. We therefore conclude that ATP released from astrocytes exerts tonic and activity-dependent down-regulation of synaptic transmission via presynaptic mechanisms.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Nucleocytoplasmic Shuttling of Cytoskeletal Proteins: Molecular Mechanism and Biological Significance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masahiro Kumeta

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Various nuclear functional complexes contain cytoskeletal proteins as regulatory subunits; for example, nuclear actin participates in transcriptional complexes, and actin-related proteins are integral to chromatin remodeling complexes. Nuclear complexes such as these are involved in both basal and adaptive nuclear functions. In addition to nuclear import via classical nuclear transport pathways or passive diffusion, some large cytoskeletal proteins spontaneously migrate into the nucleus in a karyopherin-independent manner. The balance of nucleocytoplasmic distribution of such proteins can be altered by several factors, such as import versus export, or capture and release by complexes. The resulting accumulation or depletion of the nuclear populations thereby enhances or attenuates their nuclear functions. We propose that such molecular dynamics constitute a form of cytoskeleton-modulated regulation of nuclear functions which is mediated by the translocation of cytoskeletal components in and out of the nucleus.

  15. Cytoplasmic vacuolation in cultured rat astrocytes induced by an organophosphorus agent requires extracellular signal-regulated kinase activation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Isobe, Ichiro; Maeno, Yoshitaka; Nagao, Masataka; Iwasa, Mineo; Koyama, Hiroyoshi; Seko-Nakamura, Yoshimi; Monma-Ohtaki, Jun

    2003-01-01

    There are various toxic chemicals that cause cell death. However, in certain cases deleterious agents elicit various cellular responses prior to cell death. To determine the cellular mechanisms by which such cellular responses are induced is important, but sufficient attention has not been paid to this issue to date. In this study, we showed the characteristic effects of an organophosphorus (OP) agent, bis(pinacolyl methyl)phosphonate (BPMP), which we synthesized for the study of OP nerve agents, on cultured rat astrocytes. Morphologically, BPMP induced cytoplasmic vacuolation and stellation in the rat astrocytes. Cytoplasmic vacuolation is a cell pathological change observed, for example, in vacuolar degeneration, and stellation has been reported in astrocytic reactions against various stimuli. By pretreatment with cycloheximide, a protein synthesis inhibitor, stellation was inhibited, although vacuolation was not. Cell staining with a mitochondrion-selective dye indicated that the vacuolation probably occurs in the mitochondria that are swollen and vacuolatred in the center. Interestingly, the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) cascade inhibitor inhibited vacuolation and, to some extent, stellation. These results suggest that the ERK signaling cascade is important for the induction of mitochondrial vacuolation. We expect that a detailed study of these astrocytic reactions will provide us new perspectives regarding the variation and pathological significance of cell morphological changes, such as vacuolar degeneration, and also the mechanisms underlying various neurological disorders

  16. 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

  17. 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.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Astrocytes promote myelination in response to electrical impulses.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-03-16

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

  20. 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

  1. Cytoskeletal Tropomyosin Tm5NM1 Is Required for Normal Excitation–Contraction Coupling in Skeletal Muscle

    OpenAIRE

    Vlahovich, Nicole; Kee, Anthony J.; Van der Poel, Chris; Kettle, Emma; Hernandez-Deviez, Delia; Lucas, Christine; Lynch, Gordon S.; Parton, Robert G.; Gunning, Peter W.; Hardeman, Edna C.

    2009-01-01

    The functional diversity of the actin microfilaments relies in part on the actin binding protein tropomyosin (Tm). The muscle-specific Tms regulate actin-myosin interactions and hence contraction. However, there is less known about the roles of the numerous cytoskeletal isoforms. We have shown previously that a cytoskeletal Tm, Tm5NM1, defines a Z-line adjacent cytoskeleton in skeletal muscle. Recently, we identified a second cytoskeletal Tm in this region, Tm4. Here we show that Tm4 and Tm5N...

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Regulation of hemeoxygenase-1 gene expression by Nrf2 and c-Jun in tertiary butylhydroquinone-stimulated rat primary astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Jin-Sun; Kim, Hee-Sun

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • tBHQ increased HO-1 mRNA and protein levels in rat primary astrocytes. • tBHQ enhanced HO-1 gene transcription in an ARE-dependent manner. • tBHQ increased the nuclear translocation and DNA binding of Nrf2 and c-Jun to ARE. • Nrf2 and c-Jun are involved in the differential modulation of HO-1 expression. • Nrf2 and c-Jun regulate HO-1 expression via their coordinated interaction. - Abstract: Hemeoxygenase-1 (HO-1) is a phase II antioxidant enzyme that is primarily involved in detoxification and cytoprotection in a variety of tissues. However, the mechanism underlying HO-1 gene expression remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the regulation of HO-1 expression in primary cultured astrocytes by using the natural antioxidant compound tertiary butylhydroquinone (tBHQ). We found that tBHQ increased HO-1 mRNA and protein levels. Promoter analysis revealed that tBHQ enhanced HO-1 gene transcription in an antioxidant response element (ARE)-dependent manner. In addition, tBHQ increased the nuclear translocation and DNA binding of Nrf2 and c-Jun to ARE. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) experiments demonstrated that Nrf2 and c-Jun are involved in the differential modulation of HO-1 expression. Thus, Nrf2 knockdown reduced the basal level of HO-1 expression but did not affect the fold induction by tBHQ. On the other hand, knockdown of c-Jun diminished tBHQ-mediated induction of HO-1 without affecting basal expression. The data suggest that Nrf2 generally modulates the basal expression of HO-1, while c-Jun mediates HO-1 induction in response to tBHQ. The results of co-immunoprecipitation assays demonstrated a physical interaction between Nrf2 and c-Jun in tBHQ-treated astrocytes. The results suggest that Nrf2 and c-Jun regulate HO-1 expression via their coordinated interaction in tBHQ-treated rat primary astrocytes

  5. Regulation of the pituitary tumor transforming gene by insulin-like-growth factor-I and insulin differs between malignant and non-neoplastic astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chamaon, Kathrin; Kirches, Elmar; Kanakis, Dimitrios; Braeuninger, Stefan; Dietzmann, Knut; Mawrin, Christian

    2005-01-01

    The reasons for overexpression of the oncogene pituitary tumor transforming gene (PTTG) in tumors are still not fully understood. A possible influence of the insulin-like growth factor I (Igf-I) may be of interest, since enhanced Igf-I signalling was reported in various human tumors. We examined the influence of Igf-I and insulin on PTTG expression in human astrocytoma cells in comparison to proliferating non-neoplastic rat embryonal astrocytes. PTTG mRNA expression and protein levels were increased in malignant astrocytes treated with Igf-I or insulin, whereas in rat embryonic astrocytes PTTG expression and protein levels increased only when cells were exposed to Igf-I. Enhanced transcription did not occur after treatment with inhibitors of phosphoinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), blocking the two basic signalling pathways of Igf-I and insulin. In addition to this transcriptional regulation, both kinases directly bind to PTTG, suggesting a second regulatory route by phosphorylation. However, the interaction of endogenous PTTG with MAPK and PI3K, as well as PTTG phosphorylation were independent from Igf-I or insulin. The latter results were also found in human testis, which contains high PTTG levels as well as in nonneoplastic astrocytes. This suggest, that PI3K and MAPK signalling is involved in PTTG regulation not only in malignant astrocytomas but also in non-tumorous cells

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Astrocytic Modulation of Sleep Homeostasis and Cognitive Consequences of Sleep Loss

    OpenAIRE

    Halassa, Michael M.; Florian, Cedrick; Fellin, Tommaso; Munoz, James R.; Lee, So-Young; Abel, Ted; Haydon, Philip G.; Frank, Marcos G.

    2009-01-01

    Astrocytes modulate neuronal activity by releasing chemical transmitters via a process termed gliotransmission. The role of this process in the control of behavior is unknown. Since one outcome of SNARE-dependent gliotransmission is the regulation of extracellular adenosine and because adenosine promotes sleep, we genetically inhibited the release of gliotransmitters and asked if astrocytes play an unsuspected role in sleep regulation. Inhibiting gliotransmission attenuated the accumulation o...

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Rune; Samson, Andrew J.

    2017-01-01

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

  12. 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...

  13. Fluoxetin Upregulates Connexin 43 Expression in Astrocyte

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hossein Mostafavi

    2014-02-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1990-01-01

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

  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. 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

  17. Hypoxia Epigenetically Confers Astrocytic Differentiation Potential on Human Pluripotent Cell-Derived Neural Precursor Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetsuro Yasui

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Human neural precursor cells (hNPCs derived from pluripotent stem cells display a high propensity for neuronal differentiation, but they require long-term culturing to differentiate efficiently into astrocytes. The mechanisms underlying this biased fate specification of hNPCs remain elusive. Here, we show that hypoxia confers astrocytic differentiation potential on hNPCs through epigenetic gene regulation, and that this was achieved by cooperation between hypoxia-inducible factor 1α and Notch signaling, accompanied by a reduction of DNA methylation level in the promoter region of a typical astrocyte-specific gene, Glial fibrillary acidic protein. Furthermore, we found that this hypoxic culture condition could be applied to rapid generation of astrocytes from Rett syndrome patient-derived hNPCs, and that these astrocytes impaired neuronal development. Thus, our findings shed further light on the molecular mechanisms regulating hNPC differentiation and provide attractive tools for the development of therapeutic strategies for treating astrocyte-mediated neurological disorders.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-12-01

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

  19. 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....

  20. T cells' immunological synapses induce polarization of brain astrocytes in vivo and in vitro: a novel astrocyte response mechanism to cellular injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barcia, Carlos; Sanderson, Nicholas S R; Barrett, Robert J; Wawrowsky, Kolja; Kroeger, Kurt M; Puntel, Mariana; Liu, Chunyan; Castro, Maria G; Lowenstein, Pedro R

    2008-08-20

    Astrocytes usually respond to trauma, stroke, or neurodegeneration by undergoing cellular hypertrophy, yet, their response to a specific immune attack by T cells is poorly understood. Effector T cells establish specific contacts with target cells, known as immunological synapses, during clearance of virally infected cells from the brain. Immunological synapses mediate intercellular communication between T cells and target cells, both in vitro and in vivo. How target virally infected astrocytes respond to the formation of immunological synapses established by effector T cells is unknown. Herein we demonstrate that, as a consequence of T cell attack, infected astrocytes undergo dramatic morphological changes. From normally multipolar cells, they become unipolar, extending a major protrusion towards the immunological synapse formed by the effector T cells, and withdrawing most of their finer processes. Thus, target astrocytes become polarized towards the contacting T cells. The MTOC, the organizer of cell polarity, is localized to the base of the protrusion, and Golgi stacks are distributed throughout the protrusion, reaching distally towards the immunological synapse. Thus, rather than causing astrocyte hypertrophy, antiviral T cells cause a major structural reorganization of target virally infected astrocytes. Astrocyte polarization, as opposed to hypertrophy, in response to T cell attack may be due to T cells providing a very focused attack, and thus, astrocytes responding in a polarized manner. A similar polarization of Golgi stacks towards contacting T cells was also detected using an in vitro allogeneic model. Thus, different T cells are able to induce polarization of target astrocytes. Polarization of target astrocytes in response to immunological synapses may play an important role in regulating the outcome of the response of astrocytes to attacking effector T cells, whether during antiviral (e.g. infected during HIV, HTLV-1, HSV-1 or LCMV infection), anti

  1. T cells' immunological synapses induce polarization of brain astrocytes in vivo and in vitro: a novel astrocyte response mechanism to cellular injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Barcia

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes usually respond to trauma, stroke, or neurodegeneration by undergoing cellular hypertrophy, yet, their response to a specific immune attack by T cells is poorly understood. Effector T cells establish specific contacts with target cells, known as immunological synapses, during clearance of virally infected cells from the brain. Immunological synapses mediate intercellular communication between T cells and target cells, both in vitro and in vivo. How target virally infected astrocytes respond to the formation of immunological synapses established by effector T cells is unknown.Herein we demonstrate that, as a consequence of T cell attack, infected astrocytes undergo dramatic morphological changes. From normally multipolar cells, they become unipolar, extending a major protrusion towards the immunological synapse formed by the effector T cells, and withdrawing most of their finer processes. Thus, target astrocytes become polarized towards the contacting T cells. The MTOC, the organizer of cell polarity, is localized to the base of the protrusion, and Golgi stacks are distributed throughout the protrusion, reaching distally towards the immunological synapse. Thus, rather than causing astrocyte hypertrophy, antiviral T cells cause a major structural reorganization of target virally infected astrocytes.Astrocyte polarization, as opposed to hypertrophy, in response to T cell attack may be due to T cells providing a very focused attack, and thus, astrocytes responding in a polarized manner. A similar polarization of Golgi stacks towards contacting T cells was also detected using an in vitro allogeneic model. Thus, different T cells are able to induce polarization of target astrocytes. Polarization of target astrocytes in response to immunological synapses may play an important role in regulating the outcome of the response of astrocytes to attacking effector T cells, whether during antiviral (e.g. infected during HIV, HTLV-1, HSV-1 or LCMV

  2. 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

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

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    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.

  4. Bi-phasic regulation of glycogen content in astrocytes via Cav-1/PTEN/PI3K/AKT/GSK-3β pathway by fluoxetine.

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    Bai, Qiufang; Song, Dan; Gu, Li; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Peng, Liang

    2017-04-01

    Here, we present the data indicating that chronic treatment with fluoxetine regulates Cav-1/PTEN/PI3K/AKT/GSK-3β signalling pathway and glycogen content in primary cultures of astrocytes with bi-phasic concentration dependence. At lower concentrations, fluoxetine downregulates gene expression of Cav-1, decreases membrane content of PTEN, increases activity of PI3K/AKT, and elevates GSK-3β phosphorylation thus suppressing its activity. At higher concentrations, fluoxetine acts in an inverse fashion. As expected, fluoxetine at lower concentrations increased while at higher concentrations decreased glycogen content in astrocytes. Our findings indicate that bi-phasic regulation of glycogen content via Cav-1/PTEN/PI3K/AKT/GSK-3β pathway by fluoxetine may be responsible for both therapeutic and side effects of the drug.

  5. A digital implementation of neuron-astrocyte interaction for neuromorphic applications.

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    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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. TGF-β signaling directly regulates transcription and functional expression of the electrogenic sodium bicarbonate cotransporter 1, NBCe1 (SLC4A4), via Smad4 in mouse astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khakipoor, Shokoufeh; Ophoven, Christian; Schrödl-Häußel, Magdalena; Feuerstein, Melanie; Heimrich, Bernd; Deitmer, Joachim W; Roussa, Eleni

    2017-08-01

    The electrogenic sodium bicarbonate cotransporter NBCe1 (SLC4A4) expressed in astrocytes regulates intracellular and extracellular pH. Here, we introduce transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β) as a novel regulator of NBCe1 transcription and functional expression. Using hippocampal slices and primary hippocampal and cortical astrocyte cultures, we investigated regulation of NBCe1 and elucidated the underlying signaling pathways by RT-PCR, immunoblotting, immunofluorescence, intracellular H( + ) recording using the H( + ) -sensitive dye 2',7'-bis-(carboxyethyl)-5-(and-6)-carboxyfluorescein, mink lung epithelial cell (MLEC) assay, and chromatin immunoprecipitation. Activation of TGF-β signaling significantly upregulated transcript, protein, and surface expression of NBCe1. These effects were TGF-β receptor-mediated and suppressed following inhibition of JNK and Smad signaling. Moreover, 4-aminopyridine (4AP)-dependent NBCe1 regulation requires TGF-β. TGF-β increased the rate and amplitude of intracellular H + changes upon challenging NBCe1 in wild-type astrocytes but not in cortical astrocytes from Slc4a4-deficient mice. A Smad4 binding sequence was identified in the NBCe1 promoter and Smad4 binding increased after activation of TGF-β signaling. The data show for the first time that NBCe1 is a direct target of TGF-β/Smad4 signaling. Through activation of the canonical pathway TGF-β acts directly on NBCe1 by binding of Smad4 to the NBCe1 promoter and regulating its transcription, followed by increased protein expression and transport activity. © 2017 The Authors GLIA Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

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    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

  10. 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.

  11. Insulin Regulates Astrocytic Glucose Handling Through Cooperation With IGF-I.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez, Ana M; Hernandez-Garzón, Edwin; Perez-Domper, Paloma; Perez-Alvarez, Alberto; Mederos, Sara; Matsui, Takashi; Santi, Andrea; Trueba-Saiz, Angel; García-Guerra, Lucía; Pose-Utrilla, Julia; Fielitz, Jens; Olson, Eric N; Fernandez de la Rosa, Ruben; Garcia Garcia, Luis; Pozo, Miguel Angel; Iglesias, Teresa; Araque, Alfonso; Soya, Hideaki; Perea, Gertrudis; Martin, Eduardo D; Torres Aleman, Ignacio

    2017-01-01

    Brain activity requires a flux of glucose to active regions to sustain increased metabolic demands. Insulin, the main regulator of glucose handling in the body, has been traditionally considered not to intervene in this process. However, we now report that insulin modulates brain glucose metabolism by acting on astrocytes in concert with IGF-I. The cooperation of insulin and IGF-I is needed to recover neuronal activity after hypoglycemia. Analysis of underlying mechanisms show that the combined action of IGF-I and insulin synergistically stimulates a mitogen-activated protein kinase/protein kinase D pathway resulting in translocation of GLUT1 to the cell membrane through multiple protein-protein interactions involving the scaffolding protein GAIP-interacting protein C terminus and the GTPase RAC1. Our observations identify insulin-like peptides as physiological modulators of brain glucose handling, providing further support to consider the brain as a target organ in diabetes. © 2017 by the American Diabetes Association.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1987-03-01

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

  13. Astrocytic modulation of Blood Brain Barrier: Perspectives on Parkinson´s Disease

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    Ricardo eCabezas

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available TThe blood–brain barrier (BBB is a tightly regulated interface in the Central Nervous System that regulates the exchange of molecules in and out from the brain thus maintaining the CNS homeostasis. It is mainly composed of endothelial cells, pericytes and astrocytes that create a neurovascular unit with the adjacent neurons. Astrocytes are essential for the formation and maintenance of the BBB by providing secreted factors that lead to the adequate association between the cells of the BBB and the formation of strong tight junctions. Under neurological disorders, such as chronic cerebral ischemia, brain trauma, Epilepsy, Alzheimer and Parkinson´s Diseases, a disruption of the BBB takes place, involving a lost in the permeability of the barrier and phenotypical changes in both the endothelial cells and astrocytes. In this aspect, it has been established that the process of reactive gliosis is a common feature of astrocytes during BBB disruption, which has a detrimental effect on the barrier function and a subsequent damage in neuronal survival. In this review we discuss the implications of astrocyte functions in the protection of the BBB, and in the development of Parkinson´s disease and related disorders. Additionally, we highlight the current and future strategies in astrocyte protection aimed at the development of restorative therapies for the BBB in pathological conditions.

  14. 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.

  15. Amitriptyline up-regulates connexin43-gap junction in rat cultured cortical astrocytes via activation of the p38 and c-Fos/AP-1 signalling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morioka, N; Suekama, K; Zhang, F F; Kajitani, N; Hisaoka-Nakashima, K; Takebayashi, M; Nakata, Y

    2014-06-01

    Intercellular communication via gap junctions, comprised of connexin (Cx) proteins, allow for communication between astrocytes, which in turn is crucial for maintaining CNS homeostasis. The expression of Cx43 is decreased in post-mortem brains from patients with major depression. A potentially novel mechanism of tricyclic antidepressants is to increase the expression and functioning of gap junctions in astrocytes. The effect of amitriptyline on the expression of Cx43 and gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in rat primary cultured cortical astrocytes was investigated. We also investigated the role of p38 MAPK intracellular signalling pathway in the amitriptyline-induced expression of Cx43 and GJIC. Treatment with amitriptyline for 48 h significantly up-regulated Cx43 mRNA, protein and GJIC. The up-regulation of Cx43 was not monoamine-related since noradrenaline, 5-HT and dopamine did not induce Cx43 expression and pretreatment with α- and β-adrenoceptor antagonists had no effect. Intracellular signalling involved p38 MAPK, as amitriptyline significantly increased p38 MAPK phosphorylation and Cx43 expression and GJIC were significantly blocked by the p38 inhibitor SB 202190. Furthermore, amitriptyline-induced Cx43 expression and GJIC were markedly reduced by transcription factor AP-1 inhibitors (curcumin and tanshinone IIA). The translocation of c-Fos from the cytosol and the nucleus of cortical astrocytes was increased by amitriptyline, and this response was dependent on p38 activity. These findings indicate a novel mechanism of action of amitriptyline through cortical astrocytes, and further suggest that targeting this mechanism could lead to the development of a new class of antidepressants. © 2014 The British Pharmacological Society.

  16. Astrocytic modulation of sleep homeostasis and cognitive consequences of sleep loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halassa, Michael M; Florian, Cedrick; Fellin, Tommaso; Munoz, James R; Lee, So-Young; Abel, Ted; Haydon, Philip G; Frank, Marcos G

    2009-01-29

    Astrocytes modulate neuronal activity by releasing chemical transmitters via a process termed gliotransmission. The role of this process in the control of behavior is unknown. Since one outcome of SNARE-dependent gliotransmission is the regulation of extracellular adenosine and because adenosine promotes sleep, we genetically inhibited the release of gliotransmitters and asked if astrocytes play an unsuspected role in sleep regulation. Inhibiting gliotransmission attenuated the accumulation of sleep pressure, assessed by measuring the slow wave activity of the EEG during NREM sleep, and prevented cognitive deficits associated with sleep loss. Since the sleep-suppressing effects of the A1 receptor antagonist CPT were prevented following inhibition of gliotransmission and because intracerebroventricular delivery of CPT to wild-type mice mimicked the transgenic phenotype, we conclude that astrocytes modulate the accumulation of sleep pressure and its cognitive consequences through a pathway involving A1 receptors.

  17. Decreased STAT3 Phosphorylation Mediates Cell Swelling in Ammonia-Treated Astrocyte Cultures

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    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.

  18. 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.

  19. Bi-directionally protective communication between neurons and astrocytes under ischemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiao-Mei; Qian, Christopher; Zhou, Yu-Fu; Yan, Yick-Chun; Luo, Qian-Qian; Yung, Wing-Ho; Zhang, Fa-Li; Jiang, Li-Rong; Qian, Zhong Ming; Ke, Ya

    2017-10-01

    The extensive existing knowledge on bi-directional communication between astrocytes and neurons led us to hypothesize that not only ischemia-preconditioned (IP) astrocytes can protect neurons but also IP neurons protect astrocytes from lethal ischemic injury. Here, we demonstrated for the first time that neurons have a significant role in protecting astrocytes from ischemic injury. The cultured medium from IP neurons (IPcNCM) induced a remarkable reduction in LDH and an increase in cell viability in ischemic astrocytes in vitro. Selective neuronal loss by kainic acid injection induced a significant increase in apoptotic astrocyte numbers in the brain of ischemic rats in vivo. Furthermore, TUNEL analysis, DNA ladder assay, and the measurements of ROS, GSH, pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, anti-oxidant enzymes and signal molecules in vitro and/or in vivo demonstrated that IP neurons protect astrocytes by an EPO-mediated inhibition of pro-apoptotic signals, activation of anti-apoptotic proteins via the P13K/ERK/STAT5 pathways and activation of anti-oxidant proteins via up-regulation of anti-oxidant enzymes. We demonstrated the existence of astro-protection by IP neurons under ischemia and proposed that the bi-directionally protective communications between cells might be a common activity in the brain or peripheral organs under most if not all pathological conditions. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Bi-directionally protective communication between neurons and astrocytes under ischemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-Mei Wu

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The extensive existing knowledge on bi-directional communication between astrocytes and neurons led us to hypothesize that not only ischemia-preconditioned (IP astrocytes can protect neurons but also IP neurons protect astrocytes from lethal ischemic injury. Here, we demonstrated for the first time that neurons have a significant role in protecting astrocytes from ischemic injury. The cultured medium from IP neurons (IPcNCM induced a remarkable reduction in LDH and an increase in cell viability in ischemic astrocytes in vitro. Selective neuronal loss by kainic acid injection induced a significant increase in apoptotic astrocyte numbers in the brain of ischemic rats in vivo. Furthermore, TUNEL analysis, DNA ladder assay, and the measurements of ROS, GSH, pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, anti-oxidant enzymes and signal molecules in vitro and/or in vivo demonstrated that IP neurons protect astrocytes by an EPO-mediated inhibition of pro-apoptotic signals, activation of anti-apoptotic proteins via the P13K/ERK/STAT5 pathways and activation of anti-oxidant proteins via up-regulation of anti-oxidant enzymes. We demonstrated the existence of astro-protection by IP neurons under ischemia and proposed that the bi-directionally protective communications between cells might be a common activity in the brain or peripheral organs under most if not all pathological conditions.

  1. 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.

  2. Evaluation of the neuronal apoptotic pathways involved in cytoskeletal disruption-induced apoptosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordà, Elvira G; Verdaguer, Ester; Jimenez, Andrés; Arriba, S Garcia de; Allgaier, Clemens; Pallàs, Mercè; Camins, Antoni

    2005-08-01

    The cytoskeleton is critical to neuronal functioning and survival. Cytoskeletal alterations are involved in several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. We studied the possible pathways involved in colchicine-induced apoptosis in cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs). Although colchicine evoked an increase in caspase-3, caspase-6 and caspase-9 activation, selective caspase inhibitors did not attenuate apoptosis. Inhibitors of other cysteine proteases such as PD150606 (a calpain-specific inhibitor), Z-Phe-Ala fluoromethyl ketone (a cathepsins-inhibitors) and N(alpha)-p-tosyl-l-lysine chloromethyl ketone (serine-proteases inhibitor) also had no effect on cell death/apoptosis induced by colchicine. However, BAPTA-AM 10 microM (intracellular calcium chelator) prevented apoptosis mediated by cytoskeletal alteration. These data indicate that calcium modulates colchicine-induced apoptosis in CGNs. PARP-1 inhibitors did not prevent apoptosis mediated by colchicine. Finally, colchicine-induced apoptosis in CGNs was attenuated by kenpaullone, a cdk5 inhibitor. Kenpaullone and indirubin also prevented cdk5/p25 activation mediated by colchicine. These findings indicate that cytoskeletal alteration can compromise cdk5 activation, regulating p25 formation and suggest that cdk5 inhibitors attenuate apoptosis mediated by cytoskeletal alteration. The present data indicate the potential therapeutic value of drugs that prevent the formation of p25 for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

  3. 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.

  4. Astrocytes from adult Wistar rats aged in vitro show changes in glial functions.

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    Souza, Débora Guerini; Bellaver, Bruna; Raupp, Gustavo Santos; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2015-11-01

    Astrocytes, the most versatile cells of the central nervous system, play an important role in the regulation of neurotransmitter homeostasis, energy metabolism, antioxidant defenses and the anti-inflammatory response. Recently, our group characterized cortical astrocyte cultures from adult Wistar rats. In line with that work, we studied glial function using an experimental in vitro model of aging astrocytes (30 days in vitro after reaching confluence) from newborn (NB), adult (AD) and aged (AG) Wistar rats. We evaluated metabolic parameters, such as the glucose uptake, glutamine synthetase (GS) activity, and glutathione (GSH) content, as well as the GFAP, GLUT-1 and xCT expression. AD and AG astrocytes take up less glucose than NB astrocytes and had decreased GLUT1 expression levels. Furthermore, AD and AG astrocytes exhibited decreased GS activity compared to NB cells. Simultaneously, AD and AG astrocytes showed an increase in GSH levels, along with an increase in xCT expression. NB, AD and AG astrocytes presented similar morphology; however, differences in GFAP levels were observed. Taken together, these results improve the knowledge of cerebral senescence and represent an innovative tool for brain studies of aging. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2012-01-01

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

  8. Cytoskeletal defects in Bmpr2-associated pulmonary arterial hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Jennifer A; Hemnes, Anna R; Perrien, Daniel S; Schuster, Manfred; Robinson, Linda J; Gladson, Santhi; Loibner, Hans; Bai, Susan; Blackwell, Tom R; Tada, Yuji; Harral, Julie W; Talati, Megha; Lane, Kirk B; Fagan, Karen A; West, James

    2012-03-01

    The heritable form of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is typically caused by a mutation in bone morphogenic protein receptor type 2 (BMPR2), and mice expressing Bmpr2 mutations develop PAH with features similar to human disease. BMPR2 is known to interact with the cytoskeleton, and human array studies in PAH patients confirm alterations in cytoskeletal pathways. The goal of this study was to evaluate cytoskeletal defects in BMPR2-associated PAH. Expression arrays on our Bmpr2 mutant mouse lungs revealed cytoskeletal defects as a prominent molecular consequence of universal expression of a Bmpr2 mutation (Rosa26-Bmpr2(R899X)). Pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells cultured from these mice have histological and functional cytoskeletal defects. Stable transfection of different BMPR2 mutations into pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells revealed that cytoskeletal defects are common to multiple BMPR2 mutations and are associated with activation of the Rho GTPase, Rac1. Rac1 defects are corrected in cell culture and in vivo through administration of exogenous recombinant human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (rhACE2). rhACE2 reverses 77% of gene expression changes in Rosa26-Bmpr2(R899X) transgenic mice, in particular, correcting defects in cytoskeletal function. Administration of rhACE2 to Rosa26-Bmpr2(R899X) mice with established PAH normalizes pulmonary pressures. Together, these findings suggest that cytoskeletal function is central to the development of BMPR2-associated PAH and that intervention against cytoskeletal defects may reverse established disease.

  9. Neuron-derived transthyretin modulates astrocytic glycolysis in hormone-independent manner

    OpenAIRE

    Zawiślak, Alina; Jakimowicz, Piotr; McCubrey, James A.; Rakus, Dariusz

    2017-01-01

    It has been shown that neurons alter the expression of astrocytic metabolic enzymes by secretion of until now unknown molecule(s) into extracellular fluid. Here, we present evidence that neuron-derived transthyretin (TTR) stimulates expression of glycolytic enzymes in astrocytes which is reflected by an increased synthesis of ATP. The action of TTR is restricted to regulatory enzymes of glycolysis: phosphofructokinase P (PFKP) and pyruvate kinase M1/M2 isoforms (PKM1/2). The regulation of PFK...

  10. Astrocytes Can Adopt Endothelial Cell Fates in a p53-Dependent Manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brumm, Andrew J; Nunez, Stefanie; Doroudchi, Mehdi M; Kawaguchi, Riki; Duan, Jinhzu; Pellegrini, Matteo; Lam, Larry; Carmichael, S Thomas; Deb, Arjun; Hinman, Jason D

    2017-08-01

    Astrocytes respond to a variety of CNS injuries by cellular enlargement, process outgrowth, and upregulation of extracellular matrix proteins that function to prevent expansion of the injured region. This astrocytic response, though critical to the acute injury response, results in the formation of a glial scar that inhibits neural repair. Scar-forming cells (fibroblasts) in the heart can undergo mesenchymal-endothelial transition into endothelial cell fates following cardiac injury in a process dependent on p53 that can be modulated to augment cardiac repair. Here, we sought to determine whether astrocytes, as the primary scar-forming cell of the CNS, are able to undergo a similar cellular phenotypic transition and adopt endothelial cell fates. Serum deprivation of differentiated astrocytes resulted in a change in cellular morphology and upregulation of endothelial cell marker genes. In a tube formation assay, serum-deprived astrocytes showed a substantial increase in vessel-like morphology that was comparable to human umbilical vein endothelial cells and dependent on p53. RNA sequencing of serum-deprived astrocytes demonstrated an expression profile that mimicked an endothelial rather than astrocyte transcriptome and identified p53 and angiogenic pathways as specifically upregulated. Inhibition of p53 with genetic or pharmacologic strategies inhibited astrocyte-endothelial transition. Astrocyte-endothelial cell transition could also be modulated by miR-194, a microRNA downstream of p53 that affects expression of genes regulating angiogenesis. Together, these studies demonstrate that differentiated astrocytes retain a stimulus-dependent mechanism for cellular transition into an endothelial phenotype that may modulate formation of the glial scar and promote injury-induced angiogenesis.

  11. Cerebral Mast Cells Participate In Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction by Promoting Astrocyte Activation.

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    Zhang, Xiang; Yao, Hao; Qian, Qingqing; Li, Nana; Jin, Wenjie; Qian, Yanning

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes, the major glial cell type that has been increasingly recognized as contributing to neuroinflammation, are critical in the occurrence and development of postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). Although emerging evidence showed that brain mast cells (MCs) are the "first responders" in neuroinflammation, little is known about the functional communication between MCs and astrocytes. In this study, we investigated the potential regulation of astrocyte activation by MCs. Rats received an intracerebroventricular injection of Cromolyn (an MC stabilizer) or sterile saline 30 min before undergoing open tibial fracture surgery, and the levels of neuroinflammation and the degree of memory dysfunction were evaluated at 1 day and 3 days after surgery. In the in vitro study, the effect of activated MCs on astrocytes were further clarified. Surgery increased the number of MCs, the astrocyte activation and the production of inflammatory factors, and resulted in cognitive deficits. Site-directed pre-injection of Cromolyn can inhibit this effect. In the vitro study, the conditioned medium from C48/80-stimulated mast cells (P815) could induce primary astrocyte activation and subsequent production of inflammatory cytokines, which could be inhibited by Cromolyn. These findings indicate that activated MCs could trigger astrocyte activation, be involved in neuroinflammation and possibly contribute to POCD. Interactions between MCs and astrocytes could provide potential therapeutic targets for POCD. © 2016 The Author(s) Published by S. Karger AG, Basel.

  12. Cerebral Mast Cells Participate In Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction by Promoting Astrocyte Activation

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    Xiang Zhang

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Astrocytes, the major glial cell type that has been increasingly recognized as contributing to neuroinflammation, are critical in the occurrence and development of postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD. Although emerging evidence showed that brain mast cells (MCs are the "first responders” in neuroinflammation, little is known about the functional communication between MCs and astrocytes. Methods: In this study, we investigated the potential regulation of astrocyte activation by MCs. Rats received an intracerebroventricular injection of Cromolyn (an MC stabilizer or sterile saline 30 min before undergoing open tibial fracture surgery, and the levels of neuroinflammation and the degree of memory dysfunction were evaluated at 1 day and 3 days after surgery. In the in vitro study, the effect of activated MCs on astrocytes were further clarified. Results: Surgery increased the number of MCs, the astrocyte activation and the production of inflammatory factors, and resulted in cognitive deficits. Site-directed pre-injection of Cromolyn can inhibit this effect. In the vitro study, the conditioned medium from C48/80-stimulated mast cells (P815 could induce primary astrocyte activation and subsequent production of inflammatory cytokines, which could be inhibited by Cromolyn. Conclusion: These findings indicate that activated MCs could trigger astrocyte activation, be involved in neuroinflammation and possibly contribute to POCD. Interactions between MCs and astrocytes could provide potential therapeutic targets for POCD.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-12-01

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

  14. [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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-04-01

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

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

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    Elodie Barat

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

  19. 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.

  20. Raindrops of synaptic noise on dual excitability landscape: an approach to astrocyte network modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verisokin, Andrey Yu.; Postnov, Dmitry E.; Verveyko, Darya V.; Brazhe, Alexey R.

    2018-04-01

    The most abundant non-neuronal cells in the brain, astrocytes, populate all parts of the central nervous system (CNS). Astrocytic calcium activity ranging from subcellular sparkles to intercellular waves is believed to be the key to a plethora of regulatory pathways in the central nervous system from synaptic plasticity to blood flow regulation. Modeling of the calcium wave initiation and transmission and their spatiotemporal dynamics is therefore an important step stone in understanding the crucial cogs of cognition. Astrocytes are active sensors of ongoing neuronal and synaptic activity, and neurotransmitters diffusing from the synaptic cleft make a strong impact on the astrocytic activity. Here we propose a model describing the patterns of calcium wave formation at a single cell level and discuss the interplay between astrocyte shape the calcium waves dynamics driven by local stochastic surges of glutamate simulating synaptic activity.

  1. Fragility of foot process morphology in kidney podocytes arises from chaotic spatial propagation of cytoskeletal instability.

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    Cibele V Falkenberg

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Kidney podocytes' function depends on fingerlike projections (foot processes that interdigitate with those from neighboring cells to form the glomerular filtration barrier. The integrity of the barrier depends on spatial control of dynamics of actin cytoskeleton in the foot processes. We determined how imbalances in regulation of actin cytoskeletal dynamics could result in pathological morphology. We obtained 3-D electron microscopy images of podocytes and used quantitative features to build dynamical models to investigate how regulation of actin dynamics within foot processes controls local morphology. We find that imbalances in regulation of actin bundling lead to chaotic spatial patterns that could impair the foot process morphology. Simulation results are consistent with experimental observations for cytoskeletal reconfiguration through dysregulated RhoA or Rac1, and they predict compensatory mechanisms for biochemical stability. We conclude that podocyte morphology, optimized for filtration, is intrinsically fragile, whereby local transient biochemical imbalances may lead to permanent morphological changes associated with pathophysiology.

  2. Isoform-selective regulation of glycogen phosphorylase by energy deprivation and phosphorylation in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Margit S; Pedersen, Sofie E; Walls, Anne B; Waagepetersen, Helle S; Bak, Lasse K

    2015-01-01

    Glycogen phosphorylase (GP) is activated to degrade glycogen in response to different stimuli, to support both the astrocyte's own metabolic demand and the metabolic needs of neurons. The regulatory mechanism allowing such a glycogenolytic response to distinct triggers remains incompletely understood. In the present study, we used siRNA-mediated differential knockdown of the two isoforms of GP expressed in astrocytes, muscle isoform (GPMM), and brain isoform (GPBB), to analyze isoform-specific regulatory characteristics in a cellular setting. Subsequently, we tested the response of each isoform to phosphorylation, triggered by incubation with norepinephrine (NE), and to AMP, increased by glucose deprivation in cells in which expression of one GP isoform had been silenced. Successful knockdown was demonstrated on the protein level by Western blot, and on a functional level by determination of glycogen content showing an increase in glycogen levels following knockdown of either GPMM or GPBB. NE triggered glycogenolysis within 15 min in control cells and after GPBB knockdown. However, astrocytes in which expression of GPMM had been silenced showed a delay in response to NE, with glycogen levels significantly reduced only after 60 min. In contrast, allosteric activation of GP by AMP, induced by glucose deprivation, seemed to mainly affect GPBB, as only knockdown of GPBB, but not of GPMM, delayed the glycogenolytic response to glucose deprivation. Our results indicate that the two GP isoforms expressed in astrocytes respond to different physiological triggers, therefore conferring distinct metabolic functions of brain glycogen. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

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    Clare M Florence

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

  4. Oxidative Stress Posttranslationally Regulates the Expression of Ha-Ras and Ki-Ras in Cultured Astrocytes

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    Samantha Messina

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Addition of hydrogen peroxide to cultured astrocytes induced a rapid and transient increase in the expression of Ha-Ras and Ki-Ras. Pull-down experiments with the GTP-Ras-binding domain of Raf-1 showed that oxidative stress substantially increased the activation of Ha-Ras, whereas a putative farnesylated activated form of Ki-Ras was only slightly increased. The increase in both Ha-Ras and Ki-Ras was insensitive to the protein synthesis inhibitor, cycloheximide, and was occluded by the proteasomal inhibitor, MG-132. In addition, exposure to hydrogen peroxide reduced the levels of ubiquitinated Ras protein, indicating that oxidative stress leads to a reduced degradation of both isoforms through the ubiquitin/proteasome pathway. Indeed, the late reduction in Ha-Ras and Ki-Ras was due to a recovery of proteasomal degradation because it was sensitive to MG-132. The late reduction of Ha-Ras levels was abrogated by compound PD98059, which inhibits the MAP kinase pathway, whereas the late reduction of Ki-Ras was unaffected by PD98059. We conclude that oxidative stress differentially regulates the expression of Ha-Ras and Ki-Ras in cultured astrocytes, and that activation of the MAP kinase pathway by oxidative stress itself or by additional factors may act as a fail-safe mechanism limiting a sustained expression of the potentially detrimental Ha-Ras.

  5. 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.

  6. Control of mitochondrial pH by uncoupling protein 4 in astrocytes promotes neuronal survival

    KAUST Repository

    Lambert, Hélène Perreten

    2014-09-18

    Brain activity is energetically costly and requires a steady and highly regulated flow of energy equivalents between neural cells. It is believed that a substantial share of cerebral glucose, the major source of energy of the brain, will preferentially be metabolized in astrocytes via aerobic glycolysis. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether uncoupling proteins (UCPs), located in the inner membrane of mitochondria, play a role in setting up the metabolic response pattern of astrocytes. UCPs are believed to mediate the transmembrane transfer of protons, resulting in the uncoupling of oxidative phosphorylation from ATP production. UCPs are therefore potentially important regulators of energy fluxes. The main UCP isoforms expressed in the brain are UCP2, UCP4, and UCP5. We examined in particular the role of UCP4 in neuron-astrocyte metabolic coupling and measured a range of functional metabolic parameters including mitochondrial electrical potential and pH, reactive oxygen species production, NAD/NADH ratio, ATP/ADP ratio, CO2 and lactate production, and oxygen consumption rate. In brief, we found that UCP4 regulates the intramitochondrial pH of astrocytes, which acidifies as a consequence of glutamate uptake, with the main consequence of reducing efficiency of mitochondrial ATP production. The diminished ATP production is effectively compensated by enhancement of glycolysis. This nonoxidative production of energy is not associated with deleterious H2O2 production. We show that astrocytes expressing more UCP4 produced more lactate, which is used as an energy source by neurons, and had the ability to enhance neuronal survival.

  7. Effects on DHEA levels by estrogen in rat astrocytes and CNS co-cultures via the regulation of CYP7B1-mediated metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fex Svenningsen, Åsa; Wicher, Grzegorz; Lundqvist, Johan

    2011-01-01

    The neurosteroid dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is formed locally in the CNS and has been implicated in several processes essential for CNS function, including control of neuronal survival. An important metabolic pathway for DHEA in the CNS involves the steroid hydroxylase CYP7B1. In previous...... studies, CYP7B1 was identified as a target for estrogen regulation in cells of kidney and liver. In the current study, we examined effects of estrogens on CYP7B1-mediated metabolism of DHEA in primary cultures of rat astrocytes and co-cultures of rat CNS cells. Astrocytes, which interact with neurons...... whereby estrogen can exert protective effects in the CNS may involve increase of the levels of DHEA by suppression of its metabolism....

  8. Astrocyte-secreted thrombospondin-1 modulates synapse and spine defects in the fragile X mouse model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Connie; Lau, Sally K M; Doering, Laurie C

    2016-08-02

    Astrocytes are key participants in various aspects of brain development and function, many of which are executed via secreted proteins. Defects in astrocyte signaling are implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by abnormal neural circuitry such as Fragile X syndrome (FXS). In animal models of FXS, the loss in expression of the Fragile X mental retardation 1 protein (FMRP) from astrocytes is associated with delayed dendrite maturation and improper synapse formation; however, the effect of astrocyte-derived factors on the development of neurons is not known. Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) is an important astrocyte-secreted protein that is involved in the regulation of spine development and synaptogenesis. In this study, we found that cultured astrocytes isolated from an Fmr1 knockout (Fmr1 KO) mouse model of FXS displayed a significant decrease in TSP-1 protein expression compared to the wildtype (WT) astrocytes. Correspondingly, Fmr1 KO hippocampal neurons exhibited morphological deficits in dendritic spines and alterations in excitatory synapse formation following long-term culture. All spine and synaptic abnormalities were prevented in the presence of either astrocyte-conditioned media or a feeder layer derived from FMRP-expressing astrocytes, or following the application of exogenous TSP-1. Importantly, this work demonstrates the integral role of astrocyte-secreted signals in the establishment of neuronal communication and identifies soluble TSP-1 as a potential therapeutic target for Fragile X syndrome.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Brian Roland; MacAulay, Nanna

    2017-01-01

    affecting the K(+) transients, pointing to NBCe1 as a key contributor to the stimulus-induced astrocytic cell swelling. Inhibition of the monocarboxylate cotransporters (MCT), like-wise, reduced the ECS shrinkage by ∼25% without compromising the K(+) transients. Isosmotic reduction of extracellular Cl...

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Does Global Astrocytic Calcium Signaling Participate in Awake Brain State Transitions and Neuronal Circuit Function?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjaerby, Celia; Rasmussen, Rune; Andersen, Mie

    2017-01-01

    of the neuromodulators, noradrenaline and acetylcholine. Astrocytes have emerged as a new player participating in the regulation of brain activity, and have recently been implicated in brain state shifts. Astrocytes display global Ca(2+) signaling in response to activation of the noradrenergic system, but whether...... astrocytic Ca(2+) signaling is causative or correlative for shifts in brain state and neural activity patterns is not known. Here we review the current available literature on astrocytic Ca(2+) signaling in awake animals in order to explore the role of astrocytic signaling in brain state shifts. Furthermore......We continuously need to adapt to changing conditions within our surrounding environment, and our brain needs to quickly shift between resting and working activity states in order to allow appropriate behaviors. These global state shifts are intimately linked to the brain-wide release...

  14. Sex differences in the inflammatory response of primary astrocytes to lipopolysaccharide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santos-Galindo María

    2011-07-01

    differences in the expression of the LPS receptor TLR4. In contrast, the different inflammatory response was associated with increased mRNA levels of translocator protein, a key steroidogenic regulator, in female astrocytes that were treated with LPS. Conclusions Male and female cortical astrocytes respond differentially to an inflammatory challenge and this may be predetermined by perinatal testosterone exposure.

  15. Key Metabolic Enzymes Underlying Astrocytic Upregulation of GABAergic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Przemysław T. Kaczor

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available GABAergic plasticity is recognized as a key mechanism of shaping the activity of the neuronal networks. However, its description is challenging because of numerous neuron-specific mechanisms. In particular, while essential role of glial cells in the excitatory plasticity is well established, their involvement in GABAergic plasticity only starts to emerge. To address this problem, we used two models: neuronal cell culture (NC and astrocyte-neuronal co-culture (ANCC, where we chemically induced long-term potentiation at inhibitory synapses (iLTP. iLTP could be induced both in NC and ANCC but in ANCC its extent was larger. Importantly, this functional iLTP manifestation was accompanied by an increase in gephyrin puncta size. Furthermore, blocking astrocyte Krebs cycle with fluoroacetate (FA in ANCC prevented enhancement of both mIPSC amplitude and gephyrin puncta size but this effect was not observed in NC, indicating a key role in neuron-astrocyte cross-talk. Blockade of monocarboxylate transport with α-Cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid (4CIN abolished iLTP both in NC and ANCC and in the latter model prevented also enlargement of gephyrin puncta. Similarly, blockade of glycogen phosphorylase with BAYU6751 prevented enlargement of gephyrin puncta upon iLTP induction. Finally, block of glutamine synthetase with methionine sulfoxide (MSO nearly abolished mIPSC increase in both NMDA stimulated cell groups but did not prevent enlargement of gephyrin puncta. In conclusion, we provide further evidence that GABAergic plasticity is strongly regulated by astrocytes and the underlying mechanisms involve key metabolic enzymes. Considering the strategic role of GABAergic interneurons, the plasticity described here indicates possible mechanism whereby metabolism regulates the network activity.

  16. 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

  17. Thyroid hormones upregulate apolipoprotein E gene expression in astrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2015-12-04

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

  18. Thyroid hormones upregulate apolipoprotein E gene expression in astrocytes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Globular adiponectin induces a pro-inflammatory response in human astrocytic cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wan, Zhongxiao; Mah, Dorrian; Simtchouk, Svetlana; Klegeris, Andis; Little, Jonathan P.

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Adiponectin receptors are expressed in human astrocytes. • Globular adiponectin induces secretion of IL-6 and MCP-1 from cultured astrocytes. • Adiponectin may play a pro-inflammatory role in astrocytes. - Abstract: Neuroinflammation, mediated in part by activated brain astrocytes, plays a critical role in the development of neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Adiponectin is the most abundant adipokine secreted from adipose tissue and has been reported to exert both anti- and pro-inflammatory effects in peripheral tissues; however, the effects of adiponectin on astrocytes remain unknown. Shifts in peripheral concentrations of adipokines, including adiponectin, could contribute to the observed link between midlife adiposity and increased AD risk. The aim of the present study was to characterize the effects of globular adiponectin (gAd) on pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA expression and secretion in human U373 MG astrocytic cells and to explore the potential involvement of nuclear factor (NF)-κB, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and phosphatidylinositide 3-kinases (PI3 K) signaling pathways in these processes. We demonstrated expression of adiponectin receptor 1 (adipoR1) and adipoR2 in U373 MG cells and primary human astrocytes. gAd induced secretion of interleukin (IL)-6 and monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, and gene expression of IL-6, MCP-1, IL-1β and IL-8 in U373 MG cells. Using specific inhibitors, we found that NF-κB, p38MAPK and ERK1/2 pathways are involved in gAd-induced induction of cytokines with ERK1/2 contributing the most. These findings provide evidence that gAd may induce a pro-inflammatory phenotype in human astrocytes

  2. Globular adiponectin induces a pro-inflammatory response in human astrocytic cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wan, Zhongxiao; Mah, Dorrian; Simtchouk, Svetlana [School of Health and Exercise Sciences, University of British Columbia Okanagan, Kelowna, BC (Canada); Klegeris, Andis [Department of Biology, University of British Columbia Okanagan, Kelowna, BC (Canada); Little, Jonathan P., E-mail: jonathan.little@ubc.ca [School of Health and Exercise Sciences, University of British Columbia Okanagan, Kelowna, BC (Canada)

    2014-03-28

    Highlights: • Adiponectin receptors are expressed in human astrocytes. • Globular adiponectin induces secretion of IL-6 and MCP-1 from cultured astrocytes. • Adiponectin may play a pro-inflammatory role in astrocytes. - Abstract: Neuroinflammation, mediated in part by activated brain astrocytes, plays a critical role in the development of neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Adiponectin is the most abundant adipokine secreted from adipose tissue and has been reported to exert both anti- and pro-inflammatory effects in peripheral tissues; however, the effects of adiponectin on astrocytes remain unknown. Shifts in peripheral concentrations of adipokines, including adiponectin, could contribute to the observed link between midlife adiposity and increased AD risk. The aim of the present study was to characterize the effects of globular adiponectin (gAd) on pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA expression and secretion in human U373 MG astrocytic cells and to explore the potential involvement of nuclear factor (NF)-κB, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and phosphatidylinositide 3-kinases (PI3 K) signaling pathways in these processes. We demonstrated expression of adiponectin receptor 1 (adipoR1) and adipoR2 in U373 MG cells and primary human astrocytes. gAd induced secretion of interleukin (IL)-6 and monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, and gene expression of IL-6, MCP-1, IL-1β and IL-8 in U373 MG cells. Using specific inhibitors, we found that NF-κB, p38MAPK and ERK1/2 pathways are involved in gAd-induced induction of cytokines with ERK1/2 contributing the most. These findings provide evidence that gAd may induce a pro-inflammatory phenotype in human astrocytes.

  3. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guyllaume Coiret

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are integral functional components of synapses, regulating transmission and plasticity. They have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, although their precise roles have not been comprehensively characterized. Astrocytes integrate activity from neighboring synapses by responding to neuronally released neurotransmitters such as glutamate and ATP. Strong activation of astrocytes mediated by these neurotransmitters can promote seizure-like activity by initiating a positive feedback loop that induces excessive neuronal discharge. Recent work has demonstrated that astrocytes express cannabinoid 1 (CB1 receptors, which are sensitive to endocannabinoids released by nearby pyramidal cells. In this study, we tested whether this mechanism also contributes to epileptiform activity. In a model of 4-aminopyridine induced epileptic-like activity in hippocampal slice cultures, we show that pharmacological blockade of astrocyte CB1 receptors did not modify the initiation, but significantly reduced the maintenance of epileptiform discharge. When communication in astrocytic networks was disrupted by chelating astrocytic calcium, this CB1 receptor-mediated modulation of epileptiform activity was no longer observed. Thus, endocannabinoid signaling from neurons to astrocytes represents an additional significant factor in the maintenance of epileptiform activity in the hippocampus.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

    Astrocytes are integral functional components of synapses, regulating transmission and plasticity. They have also been implicated in the pathogenesis of epilepsy, although their precise roles have not been comprehensively characterized. Astrocytes integrate activity from neighboring synapses by responding to neuronally released neurotransmitters such as glutamate and ATP. Strong activation of astrocytes mediated by these neurotransmitters can promote seizure-like activity by initiating a positive feedback loop that induces excessive neuronal discharge. Recent work has demonstrated that astrocytes express cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors, which are sensitive to endocannabinoids released by nearby pyramidal cells. In this study, we tested whether this mechanism also contributes to epileptiform activity. In a model of 4-aminopyridine induced epileptic-like activity in hippocampal slice cultures, we show that pharmacological blockade of astrocyte CB1 receptors did not modify the initiation, but significantly reduced the maintenance of epileptiform discharge. When communication in astrocytic networks was disrupted by chelating astrocytic calcium, this CB1 receptor-mediated modulation of epileptiform activity was no longer observed. Thus, endocannabinoid signaling from neurons to astrocytes represents an additional significant factor in the maintenance of epileptiform activity in the hippocampus.

  6. Nanofibrillar scaffolds induce preferential activation of Rho GTPases in cerebral cortical astrocytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiryaki, Volkan Mujdat; Ayres, Virginia M; Khan, Adeel A; Ahmed, Ijaz; Shreiber, David I; Meiners, Sally

    2012-01-01

    Cerebral cortical astrocyte responses to polyamide nanofibrillar scaffolds versus poly-L-lysine (PLL)-functionalized planar glass, unfunctionalized planar Aclar coverslips, and PLL-functionalized planar Aclar surfaces were investigated by atomic force microscopy and immunocytochemistry. The physical properties of the cell culture environments were evaluated using contact angle and surface roughness measurements and compared. Astrocyte morphological responses, including filopodia, lamellipodia, and stress fiber formation, and stellation were imaged using atomic force microscopy and phalloidin staining for F-actin. Activation of the corresponding Rho GTPase regulators was investigated using immunolabeling with Cdc42, Rac1, and RhoA. Astrocytes cultured on the nanofibrillar scaffolds showed a unique response that included stellation, cell–cell interactions by stellate processes, and evidence of depression of RhoA. The results support the hypothesis that the extracellular environment can trigger preferential activation of members of the Rho GTPase family, with demonstrable morphological consequences for cerebral cortical astrocytes. PMID:22915841

  7. MIRNAS in Astrocyte-Derived Exosomes as Possible Mediators of Neuronal Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Lafourcade

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes use gliotransmitters to modulate neuronal function and plasticity. However, the role of small extracellular vesicles, called exosomes, in astrocyte-to-neuron signaling is mostly unknown. Exosomes originate in multivesicular bodies of parent cells and are secreted by fusion of the multivesicular body limiting membrane with the plasma membrane. Their molecular cargo, consisting of RNA species, proteins, and lipids, is in part cell type and cell state specific. Among the RNA species transported by exosomes, microRNAs (miRNAs are able to modify gene expression in recipient cells. Several miRNAs present in astrocytes are regulated under pathological conditions, and this may have far-reaching consequences if they are loaded in exosomes. We propose that astrocyte-derived miRNA-loaded exosomes, such as miR-26a, are dysregulated in several central nervous system diseases; thus potentially controlling neuronal morphology and synaptic transmission through validated and predicted targets. Unraveling the contribution of this new signaling mechanism to the maintenance and plasticity of neuronal networks will impact our understanding on the physiology and pathophysiology of the central nervous system.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. A role for thrombospondin-1 deficits in astrocyte-mediated spine and synaptic pathology in Down's syndrome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Octavio Garcia

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Down's syndrome (DS is the most common genetic cause of mental retardation. Reduced number and aberrant architecture of dendritic spines are common features of DS neuropathology. However, the mechanisms involved in DS spine alterations are not known. In addition to a relevant role in synapse formation and maintenance, astrocytes can regulate spine dynamics by releasing soluble factors or by physical contact with neurons. We have previously shown impaired mitochondrial function in DS astrocytes leading to metabolic alterations in protein processing and secretion. In this study, we investigated whether deficits in astrocyte function contribute to DS spine pathology.Using a human astrocyte/rat hippocampal neuron coculture, we found that DS astrocytes are directly involved in the development of spine malformations and reduced synaptic density. We also show that thrombospondin 1 (TSP-1, an astrocyte-secreted protein, possesses a potent modulatory effect on spine number and morphology, and that both DS brains and DS astrocytes exhibit marked deficits in TSP-1 protein expression. Depletion of TSP-1 from normal astrocytes resulted in dramatic changes in spine morphology, while restoration of TSP-1 levels prevented DS astrocyte-mediated spine and synaptic alterations. Astrocyte cultures derived from TSP-1 KO mice exhibited similar deficits to support spine formation and structure than DS astrocytes.These results indicate that human astrocytes promote spine and synapse formation, identify astrocyte dysfunction as a significant factor of spine and synaptic pathology in the DS brain, and provide a mechanistic rationale for the exploration of TSP-1-based therapies to treat spine and synaptic pathology in DS and other neurological conditions.

  14. GABAergic interneuron to astrocyte signalling: a neglected form of cell communication in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Losi, Gabriele; Mariotti, Letizia; Carmignoto, Giorgio

    2014-10-19

    GABAergic interneurons represent a minority of all cortical neurons and yet they efficiently control neural network activities in all brain areas. In parallel, glial cell astrocytes exert a broad control of brain tissue homeostasis and metabolism, modulate synaptic transmission and contribute to brain information processing in a dynamic interaction with neurons that is finely regulated in time and space. As most studies have focused on glutamatergic neurons and excitatory transmission, our knowledge of functional interactions between GABAergic interneurons and astrocytes is largely defective. Here, we critically discuss the currently available literature that hints at a potential relevance of this specific signalling in brain function. Astrocytes can respond to GABA through different mechanisms that include GABA receptors and transporters. GABA-activated astrocytes can, in turn, modulate local neuronal activity by releasing gliotransmitters including glutamate and ATP. In addition, astrocyte activation by different signals can modulate GABAergic neurotransmission. Full clarification of the reciprocal signalling between different GABAergic interneurons and astrocytes will improve our understanding of brain network complexity and has the potential to unveil novel therapeutic strategies for brain disorders. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  15. Cyclic AMP signaling restricts activation and promotes maturation and antioxidant defenses in astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paco, Sonia; Hummel, Manuela; Plá, Virginia; Sumoy, Lauro; Aguado, Fernando

    2016-04-23

    cAMP signaling produces dramatic changes in astrocyte morphology and physiology. However, its involvement in phenotype acquisition and the transcriptionally mediated mechanisms of action are largely unknown. Here we analyzed the global transcriptome of cultured astroglial cells incubated with activators of cAMP pathways. A bulk of astroglial transcripts, 6221 annotated genes, were differentially regulated by cAMP signaling. cAMP analogs strongly upregulated genes involved in typical functions of mature astrocytes, such as homeostatic control, metabolic and structural support to neurons, antioxidant defense and communication, whereas they downregulated a considerable number of proliferating and immaturity-related transcripts. Moreover, numerous genes typically activated in reactive cells, such as scar components and immunological mediators, were repressed by cAMP. GSEA analysis contrasting gene expression profiles with transcriptome signatures of acutely isolated astrocytes and in situ evaluation of protein levels in these cells showed that cAMP signaling conferred mature and in vivo-like transcriptional features to cultured astrocytes. These results indicate that cAMP signaling is a key pathway promoting astrocyte maturation and restricting their developmental and activation features. Therefore, a positive modulation of cAMP signaling may promote the normal state of differentiated astrocytes and favor the protection and function of neuronal networks.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Acute fluoride poisoning alters myocardial cytoskeletal and AMPK signaling proteins in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panneerselvam, Lakshmikanthan; Raghunath, Azhwar; Perumal, Ekambaram

    2017-02-15

    Our previous findings revealed that increased oxidative stress, apoptosis and necrosis were implicated in acute fluoride (F - ) induced cardiac dysfunction apart from hypocalcemia and hyperkalemia. Cardiac intermediate filaments (desmin and vimentin) and cytoskeleton linker molecule vinculin plays an imperative role in maintaining the architecture of cardiac cytoskeleton. In addition, AMPK is a stress activated kinase that regulates the energy homeostasis during stressed state. The present study was aimed to examine the role of cytoskeletal proteins and AMPK signaling molecules in acute F - induced cardiotoxicity in rats. In order to study this, male Wistar rats were treated with single oral doses of 45 and 90mg/kgF - for 24h. Acute F - intoxicated rats showed declined cytoskeletal protein expression of desmin, vimentin and vinculin in a dose dependent manner compared to control. A significant increase in phosphorylation of AMPKα (Thr172), AMPKß1 (Ser108) and Acetyl-coA carboxylase (ACC) (Ser79) in the myocardium and associated ATP deprivation were found in acute F - intoxicated rats. Further, ultra-structural studies confirmed myofibril lysis with interruption of Z lines, dilated sarcoplasmic reticulum and damaged mitochondrion were observed in both the groups of F - intoxicated rats. Taken together, these findings reveal that acute F - exposure causes sudden heart failure by altering the expression of cytoskeletal proteins and AMPK signaling molecules. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  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. 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.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simenc, Janez; Lipnik-Stangelj, Metoda

    2012-01-01

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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Computational Models for Calcium-Mediated Astrocyte Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  8. 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

  9. Cytoskeletal Tropomyosin Tm5NM1 Is Required for Normal Excitation–Contraction Coupling in Skeletal Muscle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlahovich, Nicole; Kee, Anthony J.; Van der Poel, Chris; Kettle, Emma; Hernandez-Deviez, Delia; Lucas, Christine; Lynch, Gordon S.; Parton, Robert G.; Gunning, Peter W.

    2009-01-01

    The functional diversity of the actin microfilaments relies in part on the actin binding protein tropomyosin (Tm). The muscle-specific Tms regulate actin-myosin interactions and hence contraction. However, there is less known about the roles of the numerous cytoskeletal isoforms. We have shown previously that a cytoskeletal Tm, Tm5NM1, defines a Z-line adjacent cytoskeleton in skeletal muscle. Recently, we identified a second cytoskeletal Tm in this region, Tm4. Here we show that Tm4 and Tm5NM1 define separate actin filaments; the former associated with the terminal sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and other tubulovesicular structures. In skeletal muscles of Tm5NM1 knockout (KO) mice, Tm4 localization was unchanged, demonstrating the specificity of the membrane association. Tm5NM1 KO muscles exhibit potentiation of T-system depolarization and decreased force rundown with repeated T-tubule depolarizations consistent with altered T-tubule function. These results indicate that a Tm5NM1-defined actin cytoskeleton is required for the normal excitation–contraction coupling in skeletal muscle. PMID:19005216

  10. Cytoskeletal tropomyosin Tm5NM1 is required for normal excitation-contraction coupling in skeletal muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlahovich, Nicole; Kee, Anthony J; Van der Poel, Chris; Kettle, Emma; Hernandez-Deviez, Delia; Lucas, Christine; Lynch, Gordon S; Parton, Robert G; Gunning, Peter W; Hardeman, Edna C

    2009-01-01

    The functional diversity of the actin microfilaments relies in part on the actin binding protein tropomyosin (Tm). The muscle-specific Tms regulate actin-myosin interactions and hence contraction. However, there is less known about the roles of the numerous cytoskeletal isoforms. We have shown previously that a cytoskeletal Tm, Tm5NM1, defines a Z-line adjacent cytoskeleton in skeletal muscle. Recently, we identified a second cytoskeletal Tm in this region, Tm4. Here we show that Tm4 and Tm5NM1 define separate actin filaments; the former associated with the terminal sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and other tubulovesicular structures. In skeletal muscles of Tm5NM1 knockout (KO) mice, Tm4 localization was unchanged, demonstrating the specificity of the membrane association. Tm5NM1 KO muscles exhibit potentiation of T-system depolarization and decreased force rundown with repeated T-tubule depolarizations consistent with altered T-tubule function. These results indicate that a Tm5NM1-defined actin cytoskeleton is required for the normal excitation-contraction coupling in skeletal muscle.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Protein targeting to glycogen is a master regulator of glycogen synthesis in astrocytes

    KAUST Repository

    Ruchti, E.; Roach, P.J.; DePaoli-Roach, A.A.; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Allaman, I.

    2016-01-01

    to induce glycogen synthesis and accumulation. In contrast, siRNA-mediated downregulation of PTG resulted in a 2-fold decrease in glycogen levels. Interestingly, PTG downregulation strongly impaired long-term astrocytic glycogen synthesis induced by insulin

  15. Memory in astrocytes: a hypothesis

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    Caudle Robert M

    2006-01-01

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

  16. Monocarboxylate transporter-dependent mechanism confers resistance to oxygen- and glucose-deprivation injury in astrocyte-neuron co-cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Chen; Zhou, Liya; Zhu, Wenxia; Wang, Hongyun; Wang, Ruijuan; He, Yunfei; Li, Zhiyun

    2015-05-06

    Hypoxic and low-glucose stressors contribute to neuronal death in many brain diseases. Astrocytes are anatomically well-positioned to shield neurons from hypoxic injury. During hypoxia/ischemia, lactate released from astrocytes is taken up by neurons and stored for energy. This process is mediated by monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) in the central nervous system. In the present study, we investigated the ability of astrocytes to protect neurons from oxygen- and glucose-deprivation (OGD) injury via an MCT-dependent mechanism in vitro. Primary cultures of neurons, astrocytes, and astrocytes-neurons derived from rat hippocampus were subjected to OGD, MCT inhibition with small interfering (si)RNA. Cell survival and expression of MCT4, MCT2, glial fibrillary acidic protein, and neuronal nuclear antigen were evaluated. OGD significantly increased cell death in neuronal cultures and up-regulated MCT4 expression in astrocyte cultures, but no increased cell death was observed in neuron-astrocyte co-cultures or astrocyte cultures. However, neuronal cell death in co-cultures was increased by exposure to MCT4- or MCT2-specific siRNA, and this effect was attenuated by the addition of lactate into the extracellular medium of neuronal cultures prior to OGD. These findings demonstrate that resistance to OGD injury in astrocyte-neuron co-cultures occurs via an MCT-dependent mechanism. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Up-regulation of Ciliary Neurotrophic Factor in Astrocytes by Aspirin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modi, Khushbu K.; Sendtner, Michael; Pahan, Kalipada

    2013-01-01

    Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is a promyelinating trophic factor, and the mechanisms by which CNTF expression could be increased in the brain are poorly understood. Acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin) is one of the most widely used analgesics. Interestingly, aspirin increased mRNA and protein expression of CNTF in primary mouse and human astrocytes in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Aspirin induced the activation of protein kinase A (PKA) but not protein kinase C (PKC). H-89, an inhibitor of PKA, abrogated aspirin-induced expression of CNTF. The activation of cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB), but not NF-κB, by aspirin, the abrogation of aspirin-induced expression of CNTF by siRNA knockdown of CREB, the presence of a consensus cAMP-response element in the promoter of CNTF, and the recruitment of CREB and CREB-binding protein to the CNTF promoter by aspirin suggest that aspirin increases the expression of the Cntf gene via the activation of CREB. Furthermore, we demonstrate that aspirin-induced astroglial CNTF was also functionally active and that supernatants of aspirin-treated astrocytes of wild type, but not Cntf null, mice increased myelin-associated proteins in oligodendrocytes and protected oligodendrocytes from TNF-α insult. These results highlight a new and novel myelinogenic property of aspirin, which may be of benefit for multiple sclerosis and other demyelinating disorders. PMID:23653362

  18. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-15

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-06

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

  1. The CNS microvascular pericyte: pericyte-astrocyte crosstalk in the regulation of tissue survival

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    Bonkowski Drew

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The French scientist Charles Benjamin Rouget identified the pericyte nearly 140 years ago. Since that time the role of the pericyte in vascular function has been difficult to elucidate. It was not until the development of techniques to isolate and culture pericytes that scientists have begun to understand the true impact of this unique cell in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis. In the brain the pericyte is an integral cellular component of the blood-brain barrier and, together with other cells of the neurovascular unit (endothelial cells, astrocytes and neurons the pericyte makes fine-tuned regulatory adjustments and adaptations to promote tissue survival. These regulatory changes involve trans-cellular communication networks between cells. In this review we consider evidence for cell-to-cell crosstalk between pericytes and astrocytes during development and in adult brain.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. The computational power of astrocyte mediated synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogier eMin

    2012-11-01

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

  5. The HSPB8-BAG3 chaperone complex is upregulated in astrocytes in the human brain affected by protein aggregation diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seidel, K; Vinet, J; Dunnen, W F A den; Brunt, E R; Meister, M; Boncoraglio, A; Zijlstra, M P; Boddeke, H W G M; Rüb, U; Kampinga, H H; Carra, S

    2012-02-01

    HSPB8 is a small heat shock protein that forms a complex with the co-chaperone BAG3. Overexpression of the HSPB8-BAG3 complex in cells stimulates autophagy and facilitates the clearance of mutated aggregation-prone proteins, whose accumulation is a hallmark of many neurodegenerative disorders. HSPB8-BAG3 could thus play a protective role in protein aggregation diseases and might be specifically upregulated in response to aggregate-prone protein-mediated toxicity. Here we analysed HSPB8-BAG3 expression levels in post-mortem human brain tissue from patients suffering of the following protein conformation disorders: Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3). Western blotting and immunohistochemistry techniques were used to analyse HSPB8 and BAG3 expression levels in fibroblasts from SCA3 patients and post-mortem brain tissues, respectively. In all diseases investigated, we observed a strong upregulation of HSPB8 and a moderate upregulation of BAG3 specifically in astrocytes in the cerebral areas affected by neuronal damage and degeneration. Intriguingly, no significant change in the HSPB8-BAG3 expression levels was observed within neurones, irrespective of their localization or of the presence of proteinaceous aggregates. We propose that the upregulation of HSPB8 and BAG3 may enhance the ability of astrocytes to clear aggregated proteins released from neurones and cellular debris, maintain the local tissue homeostasis and/or participate in the cytoskeletal remodelling that astrocytes undergo during astrogliosis. © 2011 The Authors. Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology © 2011 British Neuropathological Society.

  6. Thyroid hormone action: Astrocyte-neuron communication.

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    Beatriz eMorte

    2014-05-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    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.

  9. 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.

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

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    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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Cross-talk between neurons and astrocytes in response to bilirubin: adverse secondary impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falcão, Ana Sofia; Silva, Rui F M; Vaz, Ana Rita; Gomes, Cátia; Fernandes, Adelaide; Barateiro, Andreia; Tiribelli, Claudio; Brites, Dora

    2014-07-01

    Previous studies using monotypic nerve cell cultures have shown that bilirubin-induced neurological dysfunction (BIND) involves apoptosis and necrosis-like cell death, following neuritic atrophy and astrocyte activation,and that glycoursodeoxycholic acid (GUDCA) has therapeutic efficacy against BIND. Cross-talk between neurons and astrocytes may protect or aggravate neurotoxicity by unconjugated bilirubin (UCB). In a previous work we have shown that bidirectional signaling during astrocyte-neuron recognition attenuates neuronal damage by UCB. Here, we investigated whether the establishment of neuron-astrocyte homeostasis prior to cell exposure to UCB was instead associated with a lower resistance of neurons to UCB toxicity, and if the pro-survival properties of GUDCA were replicated in that experimental model. We have introduced a 24 h adaptation period for neuron-glia communication prior to the 48 h treatment with UCB. In such conditions, UCB induced glial activation, which aggravated neuronal damage, comprising increased apoptosis,cell demise and neuritic atrophy, which were completely prevented in the presence of GUDCA. Neuronal multidrug resistance-associated protein 1 expression and tumor necrosis factor-a secretion, although unchanged by UCB, increased in the presence of astrocytes. The rise in S100B and nitric oxide in the co-cultures medium may have contributed to UCB neurotoxicity. Since the levels of these diffusible molecules did not change by GUDCA we may assume that they are not directly involved in its beneficial effects. Data indicate that astrocytes, in an indirect neuron-astrocyte co-culture model and after homeostatic setting regulation of the system, are critically influencing neurodegeneration by UCB, and support GUDCA for the prevention of BIND.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  17. 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.

  18. From the Cover: AstrocytesAre Protective Against Chlorpyrifos Developmental Neurotoxicity in Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Astrocyte-Neuron Cocultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xian; Yang, Xiangkun; Majumder, Anirban; Swetenburg, Raymond; Goodfellow, Forrest T; Bartlett, Michael G; Stice, Steven L

    2017-06-01

    Human neural progenitor cells are capable of independent, directed differentiation into astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and neurons and thus offer a potential cell source for developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) systems. Human neural progenitor-derived astrocyte-neuron cocultured at defined ratios mimic cellular heterogeneity and interaction in the central nervous system. Cytochrome P450 enzymes are expressed at a relatively high level in astrocytes and may play a critical role in the biotransformation of endogenous or exogenous compounds, including chlorpyrifos, an organophosphate insecticide that affects the central nervous system. P450 enzymes metabolize chlorpyrifos to chlorpyrifos-oxon, which is then metabolized primarily to 3, 5, 6-trichloropyridinol in addition to diethylphosphate and diethylthiophosphate. These end metabolites are less neurotoxic than chlorpyrifos and chlorpyrifos-oxon. Our objective was to identify the interactive role of astrocytes and neurons in chlorpyrifos-induced human DNT. In neuron-only cultures, chlorpyrifos inhibited neurite length, neurite number and branch points per neuron in a dose-dependent manner during a 48 h exposure, starting at 10 μM. However, in astrocyte-neuron cocultures, astrocytes protected neurons from the effects of chlorpyrifos at higher concentrations, up to and including 30 μM chlorpyrifos and endogenous astrocyte P450 enzymes effectively metabolized chlorpyrifos. The P450 inhibitor SKF525A partly negated the protective effect of astrocytes, allowing reduction in branch points with chlorpyrifos (10 μM). Thus, the scalable and defined astrocyte-neuron cocultures model that we established here has potentially identified a role for P450 enzymes in astrocytic neuroprotection against chlorpyrifos and provides a novel model for addressing DNT in a more accurate multicellular environment. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology. All rights reserved. For

  19. 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.

  20. Isoform-selective regulation of glycogen phosphorylase by energy deprivation and phosphorylation in astrocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Müller, Margit S; Pedersen, Sofie E; Walls, Anne B

    2015-01-01

    understood. In the present study, we used siRNA-mediated differential knockdown of the two isoforms of GP expressed in astrocytes, muscle isoform (GPMM), and brain isoform (GPBB), to analyze isoform-specific regulatory characteristics in a cellular setting. Subsequently, we tested the response of each...

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Transcriptomic analyses of primary astrocytes under TNFα treatment

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    Cindy Birck

    2016-03-01

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

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

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    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.

  6. Nuclear shape changes are induced by knockdown of the SWI/SNF ATPase BRG1 and are independent of cytoskeletal connections.

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    Karen M Imbalzano

    Full Text Available Changes in nuclear morphology occur during normal development and have been observed during the progression of several diseases. The shape of a nucleus is governed by the balance of forces exerted by nuclear-cytoskeletal contacts and internal forces created by the structure of the chromatin and nuclear envelope. However, factors that regulate the balance of these forces and determine nuclear shape are poorly understood. The SWI/SNF chromatin remodeling enzyme ATPase, BRG1, has been shown to contribute to the regulation of overall cell size and shape. Here we document that immortalized mammary epithelial cells show BRG1-dependent nuclear shape changes. Specifically, knockdown of BRG1 induced grooves in the nuclear periphery that could be documented by cytological and ultrastructural methods. To test the hypothesis that the observed changes in nuclear morphology resulted from altered tension exerted by the cytoskeleton, we disrupted the major cytoskeletal networks and quantified the frequency of BRG1-dependent changes in nuclear morphology. The results demonstrated that disruption of cytoskeletal networks did not change the frequency of BRG1-induced nuclear shape changes. These findings suggest that BRG1 mediates control of nuclear shape by internal nuclear mechanisms that likely control chromatin dynamics.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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) ...

  11. Precortical phase of Alzheimer’s disease (AD)-related tau cytoskeletal pathology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stratmann, Katharina; Heinsen, Helmut; Korf, Horst-Werner; Del Turco, Domenico; Ghebremedhin, Estifanos; Seidel, Kay; Bouzrou, Mohamed; Grinberg, Lea T.; Bohl, Jürgen; Wharton, Stephen B; den Dunnen, Wilfred; Rüb, Udo

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) represents the most frequent progressive neuropsychiatric disorder worldwide leading to dementia and accounts for 60 to 70% of demented individuals. In view of the early appearance of neuronal deposits of the hyperphosphorylated cytoskeletal protein tau in the transentorhinal and entorhinal regions of the allocortex (i.e. in Braak and Braak AD stage I in the evolution of the AD-related cortical tau cytoskeletal pathology) it has been believed for a long time that these allocortical regions represent the first brain targets of the AD-related tau cytoskeletal pathology. However, recent pathoanatomical studies suggested that the subcortical brain nuclei that send efferent projections to the transentorhinal and entorhinal regions may also comprise AD-related cytoskeletal changes already at very early Braak and Braak AD stages. In order to corroborate these initial results we systematically investigated the presence and extent of the AD-related cytoskeletal pathology in serial thick tissue sections through all the subcortical nuclei known to send efferent projections to these vulnerable allocortical regions of three individuals with Braak and Braak AD stage 0 and fourteen individuals with Braak and Braak AD stage I by means of immunostainings with the anti-tau antibody AT8. These investigations revealed consistent AT8 immunoreactive neuronal tau cytoskeletal pathology in a subset of these subcortical nuclei (i.e. medial septal nucleus, nuclei of the vertical and horizontal limbs of the diagonal band of Broca, basal nucleus of Meynert; claustrum; hypothalamic ventromedial, tuberomamillary and supramamillary nuclei, perifornical region and lateral area; thalamic central medial, laterodorsal, subparafascicular, and central lateral nuclei, medial pulvinar and limitans-suprageniculate complex; peripeduncular nucleus, dopaminergic substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area, periaqueductal gray, midbrain and pontine dorsal raphe nuclei, locus

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

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    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

  13. 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

  14. Astroglial Excitability and Gliotransmission: An Appraisal of Ca2+ as a Signalling Route

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    Robert Zorec

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Astroglial cells, due to their passive electrical properties, were long considered subservient to neurons and to merely provide the framework and metabolic support of the brain. Although astrocytes do play such structural and housekeeping roles in the brain, these glial cells also contribute to the brain's computational power and behavioural output. These more active functions are endowed by the Ca2+-based excitability displayed by astrocytes. An increase in cytosolic Ca2+ levels in astrocytes can lead to the release of signalling molecules, a process termed gliotransmission, via the process of regulated exocytosis. Dynamic components of astrocytic exocytosis include the vesicular-plasma membrane secretory machinery, as well as the vesicular traffic, which is governed not only by general cytoskeletal elements but also by astrocyte-specific IFs (intermediate filaments. Gliotransmitters released into the ECS (extracellular space can exert their actions on neighbouring neurons, to modulate synaptic transmission and plasticity, and to affect behaviour by modulating the sleep homoeostat. Besides these novel physiological roles, astrocytic Ca2+ dynamics, Ca2+-dependent gliotransmission and astrocyte–neuron signalling have been also implicated in brain disorders, such as epilepsy. The aim of this review is to highlight the newer findings concerning Ca2+ signalling in astrocytes and exocytotic gliotransmission. For this we report on Ca2+ sources and sinks that are necessary and sufficient for regulating the exocytotic release of gliotransmitters and discuss secretory machinery, secretory vesicles and vesicle mobility regulation. Finally, we consider the exocytotic gliotransmission in the modulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity, as well as the astrocytic contribution to sleep behaviour and epilepsy.

  15. Assembly of the MreB-associated cytoskeletal ring of Escherichia coli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vats, Purva; Shih, Yu-Ling; Rothfield, Lawrence

    2009-04-01

    The Escherichia coli actin homologue MreB is part of a helical cytoskeletal structure that winds around the cell between the two poles. It has been shown that MreB redistributes during the cell cycle to form circumferential ring structures that flank the cytokinetic FtsZ ring and appear to be associated with division and segregation of the helical cytoskeleton. We show here that the MreB cytoskeletal ring also contains the MreC, MreD, Pbp2 and RodA proteins. Assembly of MreB, MreC, MreD and Pbp2 into the ring structure required the FtsZ ring but no other known components of the cell division machinery, whereas assembly of RodA into the cytoskeletal ring required one or more additional septasomal components. Strikingly, MreB, MreC, MreD and RodA were each able to independently assemble into the cytoskeletal ring and coiled cytoskeletal structures in the absence of any of the other ring components. This excludes the possibility that one or more of these proteins acts as a scaffold for incorporation of the other proteins into these structures. In contrast, incorporation of Pbp2 required the presence of MreC, which may provide a docking site for Pbp2 entry.

  16. 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.

  17. Stroke Status Evoked Adhesion Molecule Genetic Alterations in Astrocytes Isolated from Stroke-Prone Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats and the Apigenin Inhibition of Their Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuo Yamagata

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available We examined the possibility that the expression of adhesion molecules is regulated differently in cultured astrocytes from stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRSP/IZM rats than in those from Wistar Kyoto rats (WKY/IZM by tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF- or hypoxia and reoxygenation (H/R and the inhibitory effects of apigenin. It was found that the expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1 by TNF- in astrocytes isolated from SHRSP/IZM was increased compared with that in WKY/IZM. The expression of monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1 mRNA induced by H/R in SHRSP/IZM astrocytes was increased compared with that in normal oxygen concentrations. Apigenin strongly attenuated TNF--induced VCAM-1 mRNA and protein expression and suppressed the adhesion of U937 cells and SHRSP/IZM astrocytes. These results suggest that the expression levels of adhesion molecules during H/R affect disease outcome and can drive SHRSP/IZM to stroke. It is suggested that apigenin regulates adhesion molecule expression in reactive astrocytes during ischemia.

  18. MARCKS-related protein regulates cytoskeletal organization at cell-cell and cell-substrate contacts in epithelial cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Itallie, Christina M; Tietgens, Amber Jean; Aponte, Angel; Gucek, Marjan; Cartagena-Rivera, Alexander X; Chadwick, Richard S; Anderson, James M

    2018-02-02

    Treatment of epithelial cells with interferon-γ and TNF-α (IFN/TNF) results in increased paracellular permeability. To identify relevant proteins mediating barrier disruption, we performed proximity-dependent biotinylation (BioID) of occludin and found that tagging of MARCKS-related protein (MRP; also known as MARCKSL1) increased ∼20-fold following IFN/TNF administration. GFP-MRP was focused at the lateral cell membrane and its overexpression potentiated the physiological response of the tight junction barrier to cytokines. However, deletion of MRP did not abrogate the cytokine responses, suggesting that MRP is not required in the occludin-dependent IFN/TNF response. Instead, our results reveal a key role for MRP in epithelial cells in control of multiple actin-based structures, likely by regulation of integrin signaling. Changes in focal adhesion organization and basal actin stress fibers in MRP-knockout (KO) cells were reminiscent of those seen in FAK-KO cells. In addition, we found alterations in cell-cell interactions in MRP-KO cells associated with increased junctional tension, suggesting that MRP may play a role in focal adhesion-adherens junction cross talk. Together, our results are consistent with a key role for MRP in cytoskeletal organization of cell contacts in epithelial cells. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-12-01

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

  20. GABA(A) Increases Calcium in Subventricular Zone Astrocyte-Like Cells Through L- and T-Type Voltage-Gated Calcium Channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Young, Stephanie Z; Platel, Jean-Claude; Nielsen, Jakob V

    2010-01-01

    In the adult neurogenic subventricular zone (SVZ), the behavior of astrocyte-like cells and some of their functions depend on changes in intracellular Ca(2+) levels and tonic GABA(A) receptor activation. However, it is unknown whether, and if so how, GABA(A) receptor activity regulates...... intracellular Ca(2+) dynamics in SVZ astrocytes. To monitor Ca(2+) activity selectively in astrocyte-like cells, we used two lines of transgenic mice expressing either GFP fused to a Gq-coupled receptor or DsRed under the human glial fibrillary acidic protein (hGFAP) promoter. GABA(A) receptor activation...... induced Ca(2+) increases in 40-50% of SVZ astrocytes. GABA(A)-induced Ca(2+) increases were prevented with nifedipine and mibefradil, blockers of L- and T-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCC). The L-type Ca(2+) channel activator BayK 8644 increased the percentage of GABA(A)-responding astrocyte...

  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. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Liposomal clodronate selectively eliminates microglia from primary astrocyte cultures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  5. 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.

  6. Aquaporin 4 in Astrocytes is a Target for Therapy in Alzheimer's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lan, Yu-Long; Chen, Jian-Jiao; Hu, Gang; Xu, Jun; Xiao, Ming; Li, Shao

    2017-01-01

    Current experimental evidence points to the conclusion that aquaporin 4 (AQP4), which is an important water-channel membrane protein found in the brain, could play major roles in various brain conditions pathologically including pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this paper, we review how AQP4 and altered astrocyte functions interact in AD, and provide experimental evidence highlighting the importance of this topic for the future investigations. The interactions of AQP4 are as follows: (i) AQP4 could influence astrocytic calcium signaling and potassium homeostasis. (ii) AQP4 is linked with the removal of interstitial β-amyloid and glutamate transmission. (iii) Furthermore, AQP4 modulates the reactive astrogliosis and neuroinflammation mechanisms. (iv) To add to this, AQP4 could participate in the AD pathogenesis through affecting neurotrophic factor production. It is therefore possible to identify certain functional molecules that regulate astrocyte make-up and functions. However, making crucial efforts to develop specific agents or drugs that target AQP4 function and test their therapeutic efficiency will be a breakthrough for addressing AD in that AQP4 controls the various physiological as well as pathophysiological features of astrocytes. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  7. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2015-03-27

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

  8. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Astrocyte physiopathology: At the crossroads of intercellular networking, inflammation and cell death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossi, Daniela

    2015-07-01

    Recent breakthroughs in neuroscience have led to the awareness that we should revise our traditional mode of thinking and studying the CNS, i.e. by isolating the privileged network of "intelligent" synaptic contacts. We may instead need to contemplate all the variegate communications occurring between the different neural cell types, and centrally involving the astrocytes. Basically, it appears that a single astrocyte should be considered as a core that receives and integrates information from thousands of synapses, other glial cells and the blood vessels. In turn, it generates complex outputs that control the neural circuitry and coordinate it with the local microcirculation. Astrocytes thus emerge as the possible fulcrum of the functional homeostasis of the healthy CNS. Yet, evidence indicates that the bridging properties of the astrocytes can change in parallel with, or as a result of, the morphological, biochemical and functional alterations these cells undergo upon injury or disease. As a consequence, they have the potential to transform from supportive friends and interactive partners for neurons into noxious foes. In this review, we summarize the currently available knowledge on the contribution of astrocytes to the functioning of the CNS and what goes wrong in various pathological conditions, with a particular focus on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Alzheimer's Disease and ischemia. The observations described convincingly demonstrate that the development and progression of several neurological disorders involve the de-regulation of a finely tuned interplay between multiple cell populations. Thus, it seems that a better understanding of the mechanisms governing the integrated communication and detrimental responses of the astrocytes as well as their impact towards the homeostasis and performance of the CNS is fundamental to open novel therapeutic perspectives. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  15. Divergent regulation of the sarcomere and the cytoskeleton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schevzov, Galina; Fath, Thomas; Vrhovski, Bernadette; Vlahovich, Nicole; Rajan, Sudarsan; Hook, Jeff; Joya, Josephine E; Lemckert, Frances; Puttur, Franz; Lin, Jim J-C; Hardeman, Edna C; Wieczorek, David F; O'Neill, Geraldine M; Gunning, Peter W

    2008-01-04

    The existence of a feedback mechanism regulating the precise amounts of muscle structural proteins, such as actin and the actin-associated protein tropomyosin (Tm), in the sarcomeres of striated muscles is well established. However, the regulation of nonmuscle or cytoskeletal actin and Tms in nonmuscle cell structures has not been elucidated. Unlike the thin filaments of striated muscles, the actin cytoskeleton in nonmuscle cells is intrinsically dynamic. Given the differing requirements for the structural integrity of the actin thin filaments of the sarcomere compared with the requirement for dynamicity of the actin cytoskeleton in nonmuscle cells, we postulated that different regulatory mechanisms govern the expression of sarcomeric versus cytoskeletal Tms, as key regulators of the properties of the actin cytoskeleton. Comprehensive analyses of tissues from transgenic and knock-out mouse lines that overexpress the cytoskeletal Tms, Tm3 and Tm5NM1, and a comparison with sarcomeric Tms provide evidence for this. Moreover, we show that overexpression of a cytoskeletal Tm drives the amount of filamentous actin.

  16. Amyloid-beta aggregates cause alterations of astrocytic metabolic phenotype: impact on neuronal viability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allaman, Igor; Gavillet, Mathilde; Bélanger, Mireille; Laroche, Thierry; Viertl, David; Lashuel, Hilal A; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2010-03-03

    Amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides play a key role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease and exert various toxic effects on neurons; however, relatively little is known about their influence on glial cells. Astrocytes play a pivotal role in brain homeostasis, contributing to the regulation of local energy metabolism and oxidative stress defense, two aspects of importance for neuronal viability and function. In the present study, we explored the effects of Abeta peptides on glucose metabolism in cultured astrocytes. Following Abeta(25-35) exposure, we observed an increase in glucose uptake and its various metabolic fates, i.e., glycolysis (coupled to lactate release), tricarboxylic acid cycle, pentose phosphate pathway, and incorporation into glycogen. Abeta increased hydrogen peroxide production as well as glutathione release into the extracellular space without affecting intracellular glutathione content. A causal link between the effects of Abeta on glucose metabolism and its aggregation and internalization into astrocytes through binding to members of the class A scavenger receptor family could be demonstrated. Using astrocyte-neuron cocultures, we observed that the overall modifications of astrocyte metabolism induced by Abeta impair neuronal viability. The effects of the Abeta(25-35) fragment were reproduced by Abeta(1-42) but not by Abeta(1-40). Finally, the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) pathway appears to be crucial in these events since both the changes in glucose utilization and the decrease in neuronal viability are prevented by LY294002, a PI3-kinase inhibitor. This set of observations indicates that Abeta aggregation and internalization into astrocytes profoundly alter their metabolic phenotype with deleterious consequences for neuronal viability.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-05-01

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

  18. A transcriptome-based assessment of the astrocytic dystrophin-associated complex in the developing human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Matthew J; Murchison, Charles; Iliff, Jeffrey J

    2018-02-01

    Astrocytes play a critical role in regulating the interface between the cerebral vasculature and the central nervous system. Contributing to this is the astrocytic endfoot domain, a specialized structure that ensheathes the entirety of the vasculature and mediates signaling between endothelial cells, pericytes, and neurons. The astrocytic endfoot has been implicated as a critical element of the glymphatic pathway, and changes in protein expression profiles in this cellular domain are linked to Alzheimer's disease pathology. Despite this, basic physiological properties of this structure remain poorly understood including the developmental timing of its formation, and the protein components that localize there to mediate its functions. Here we use human transcriptome data from male and female subjects across several developmental stages and brain regions to characterize the gene expression profile of the dystrophin-associated complex (DAC), a known structural component of the astrocytic endfoot that supports perivascular localization of the astroglial water channel aquaporin-4. Transcriptomic profiling is also used to define genes exhibiting parallel expression profiles to DAC elements, generating a pool of candidate genes that encode gene products that may contribute to the physiological function of the perivascular astrocytic endfoot domain. We found that several genes encoding transporter proteins are transcriptionally associated with DAC genes. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Aquaporin-4 mediates communication between astrocyte and microglia: Implications of neuroinflammation in experimental Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, H; Liang, R; Yang, B; Zhou, Y; Liu, M; Fang, F; Ding, J; Fan, Y; Hu, G

    2016-03-11

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP4), a water-selective membrane transport protein, is up-regulated in astrocytes in various inflammatory lesions, including Parkinson disease (PD). However, the exact functional roles of AQP4 in neuroinflammation remain unknown. In the present study, we investigated how AQP4 participates in the neuroinflammation of PD using AQP4 knockout (KO) mice and astrocyte-microglial co-cultures. We found that AQP4 KO mice exhibited increased basal and inducible canonical NF-κB activity, and showed significantly enhanced gliosis (astrocytosis and microgliosis) in chronic MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine)/probenecid PD models, companying with the increase in the production of IL-1β and TNF-α in the midbrain. Similarly, AQP4 deficiency augmented the activation of the NF-κB pathway and the production of IL-1β and TNF-α in midbrain astrocyte cultures treated with MPP(+) (1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium). Furthermore, AQP4 deficiency promoted activation of microglial cells in the co-cultured system. Our data provide the first evidence that AQP4 modulates astrocyte-to-microglia communication in neuroinflammation, although its effect on astrocyte inflammatory activation remains to be explored. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2000-10-30

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

  1. 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.

  2. Regulation of the syncytin-1 promoter in human astrocytes by multiple sclerosis-related cytokines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mameli, Giuseppe; Astone, Vito; Khalili, Kamel; Serra, Caterina; Sawaya, Bassel E.; Dolei, Antonina

    2007-01-01

    Syncytin-1 has a physiological role during early pregnancy, as mediator of trophoblast fusion into the syncytiotrophoblast layer, hence allowing embryo implantation. In addition, its expression in nerve tissue has been proposed to contribute to the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS). Syncytin-1 is the env glycoprotein of the ERVWE1 component of the W family of human endogenous retroviruses (HERV), located on chromosome 7q21-22, in a candidate region for genetic susceptibility to MS. The mechanisms of ERVWE1 regulation in nerve tissue remain to be identified. Since there are correlations between some cytokines and MS outcome, we examined the regulation of the syncytin-1 promoter by MS-related cytokines in human U-87MG astrocytic cells. Using transient transfection assays, we observed that the MS-detrimental cytokines TNFα, interferon-γ, interleukin-6, and interleukin-1 activate the ERVWE1 promoter, while the MS-protective interferon-β is inhibitory. The effects of cytokines are reduced by the deletion of the cellular enhancer domain of the promoter that contains binding sites for several transcription factors. In particular, we found that TNFα had the ability to activate the ERVWE1 promoter through an NF-κB-responsive element located within the enhancer domain of the promoter. Electrophoretic mobility shift and ChIP assays showed that TNFα enhances the binding of the p65 subunit of NF-κB, to its cognate site within the promoter. The effect of TNFα is abolished by siRNA directed against p65. Taken together, these results illustrate a role for p65 in regulating the ERVWE1 promoter and in TNFα-mediated induction of syncytin-1 in multiple sclerosis

  3. Oestrogen influences on mitochondrial gene expression and respiratory chain activity in cortical and mesencephalic astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araújo, G W; Beyer, C; Arnold, S

    2008-07-01

    The regulation of mitochondrial energy metabolism plays an essential role in the central nervous system (CNS). Abnormalities of the mitochondrial respiratory chain often accompany neurodegenerative diseases. This makes mitochondria a perfect target for strategies of cellular protection against toxic compounds and pathological conditions. Steroid hormones, such as oestrogen, are well-known to fulfil a protective role in the brain during ischaemic and degenerative processes. Because astrocytes function as the major energy supplier in the CNS, we have analysed oestrogen effects on the mitochondrial respiratory chain of this cell type. In our studies, we applied semi- and quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis of gene expression and polarographic measurements of the respiratory chain activity of mitochondria. We observed that structural and functional properties were regulated dependent on the oestrogen exposure time and the brain region, but independent of the nuclear oestrogen receptors. We could demonstrate that long-term oestrogen exposure increases the subunit gene expression of respiratory chain complexes and the mitochondrial DNA content, thereby indicating an up-regulation of the amount of mitochondria per cell together with an increase of mitochondrial energy production. This could represent an important indirect mechanism by which long-term oestrogen exposure protects neurones from cell death under neurotoxic conditions. On the other hand, we observed short-term effects of oestrogen on the activity of mitochondrial, proton-pumping respiratory chain complexes. In astrocytes from the cortex, respiratory chain activity was decreased, whereas it was increased in astrocytes from the mesencephalon. An increased production of reactive oxygen species would be the consequence of an increased respiratory chain activity in mesencephalic astrocytes. This could explain the different efficiencies of oestrogen-mediated short-term protection in distinct brain

  4. Abnormal expression of leiomyoma cytoskeletal proteins involved in cell migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ura, Blendi; Scrimin, Federica; Arrigoni, Giorgio; Athanasakis, Emmanouil; Aloisio, Michelangelo; Monasta, Lorenzo; Ricci, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Uterine leiomyomas are monoclonal tumors. Several factors are involved in the neoplastic transformation of the myometrium. In our study we focused on dysregulated cytoskeletal proteins in the leiomyoma as compared to the myometrium. Paired tissue samples of ten leiomyomas and adjacent myometria were obtained and analyzed by two‑dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE). Mass spectrometry was used for protein identification, and western blotting for 2-DE data validation. The values of ten cytoskeletal proteins were found to be significantly different: eight proteins were upregulated in the leiomyoma and two proteins were downregulated. Three of the upregulated proteins (myosin regulatory light polypeptide 9, four and a half LIM domains protein 1 and LIM and SH3 domain protein 1) are involved in cell migration, while downregulated protein transgelin is involved in replicative senescence. Myosin regulatory light polypeptide 9 (MYL9) was further validated by western blotting because it is considered to be a cell migration marker in several cancers and could play a key role in leiomyoma development. Our data demonstrate significant alterations in the expression of cytoskeletal proteins involved in leiomyoma growth. A better understanding of the involvement of cytoskeletal proteins in leiomyoma pathogenesis may contribute to the identification of new therapeutic targets and the development of new pharmacological approaches.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-10-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

    Kidambi, Srivatsan; Lee, Ilsoon; Chan, Christina

    2008-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-31

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

  12. ROS detoxification and proinflammatory cytokines are linked by p38 MAPK signaling in a model of mature astrocyte activation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Nahirnyj

    Full Text Available Astrocytes are the most abundant glial cell in the retinal nerve fiber layer (NFL and optic nerve head (ONH, and perform essential roles in maintaining retinal ganglion cell (RGC detoxification and homeostasis. Mature astrocytes are relatively quiescent, but rapidly undergo a phenotypic switch in response to insult, characterized by upregulation of intermediate filament proteins, loss of glutamate buffering, secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines, and increased antioxidant production. These changes result in both positive and negative influences on RGCs. However, the mechanism regulating these responses is still unclear, and pharmacologic strategies to modulate select aspects of this switch have not been thoroughly explored. Here we describe a system for rapid culture of mature astrocytes from the adult rat retina that remain relatively quiescent, but respond robustly when challenged with oxidative damage, a key pathogenic stress associated with inner retinal injury. When primary astrocytes were exposed to reactive oxygen species (ROS we consistently observed characteristic changes in activation markers, along with increased expression of detoxifying genes, and secretion of proinflammatory cytokines. This in vitro model was then used for a pilot chemical screen to target specific aspects of this switch. Increased activity of p38α and β Mitogen Activated Protein Kinases (MAPKs were identified as a necessary signal regulating expression of MnSOD, and heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1, with consequent changes in ROS-mediated injury. Additionally, multiplex cytokine profiling detected p38 MAPK-dependent secretion of IL-6, MCP-1, and MIP-2α, which are proinflammatory signals recently implicated in damage to the inner retina. These data provide a mechanism to link increased oxidative stress to proinflammatory signaling by astrocytes, and establish this assay as a useful model to further dissect factors regulating the reactive switch.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Diverse FGF receptor signaling controls astrocyte specification and proliferation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2010-05-07

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

  15. Diverse FGF receptor signaling controls astrocyte specification and proliferation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kang, Kyungjun; Song, Mi-Ryoung

    2010-01-01

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

  16. 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.

  17. Does menaquinone participate in brain astrocyte electron transport?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovern, Douglas; Marbois, Beth

    2013-10-01

    Quinone compounds act as membrane resident carriers of electrons between components of the electron transport chain in the periplasmic space of prokaryotes and in the mitochondria of eukaryotes. Vitamin K is a quinone compound in the human body in a storage form as menaquinone (MK); distribution includes regulated amounts in mitochondrial membranes. The human brain, which has low amounts of typical vitamin K dependent function (e.g., gamma carboxylase) has relatively high levels of MK, and different regions of brain have different amounts. Coenzyme Q (Q), is a quinone synthesized de novo, and the levels of synthesis decline with age. The levels of MK are dependent on dietary intake and generally increase with age. MK has a characterized role in the transfer of electrons to fumarate in prokaryotes. A newly recognized fumarate cycle has been identified in brain astrocytes. The MK precursor menadione has been shown to donate electrons directly to mitochondrial complex III. Vitamin K compounds function in the electron transport chain of human brain astrocytes. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Astrocyte IP3R2-dependent Ca2+ signaling is not a major modulator of neuronal pathways governing behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy ePetravicz

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Calcium-dependent release of gliotransmitters by astrocytes is reported to play a critical role in synaptic transmission and be necessary for long-term potentiation (LTP, long-term depression (LTD and other forms of synaptic modulation that are correlates of learning and memory . Further, physiological processes reported to be dependent on Ca2+ fluxes in astrocytes include functional hyperemia, sleep, and regulation of breathing. The preponderance of findings indicate that most, if not all, receptor dependent Ca2+ fluxes within astrocytes are due to release of Ca2+ through IP3 receptor/channels in the endoplasmic reticulum. Findings from several laboratories indicate that astrocytes only express IP3 receptor type 2 (IP3R2 and that a knockout of IP3R2 obliterates the GPCR-dependent astrocytic Ca2+ responses. Assuming that astrocytic Ca2+ fluxes play a critical role in synaptic physiology, it would be predicted that eliminating of astrocytic Ca2+ fluxes would lead to marked changes in behavioral tests. Here, we tested this hypothesis by conducting a broad series of behavioral tests that recruited multiple brain regions, on an IP3R2 conditional knockout mouse model. We present the novel finding that behavioral processes are unaffected by lack of astrocyte IP3R-mediated Ca2+ signals. IP3R2 cKO animals display no change in anxiety or depressive behaviors, and no alteration to motor and sensory function. Morris water maze testing, a behavioral correlate of learning and memory, was unaffected by lack of astrocyte IP3R2-mediated Ca2+-signaling. Therefore, in contrast to the prevailing literature, we find that neither receptor-driven astrocyte Ca2+ fluxes nor, by extension, gliotransmission is likely to be a major modulating force on the physiological processes underlying behavior.

  19. cAMP/PKA signalling reinforces the LATS–YAP pathway to fully suppress YAP in response to actin cytoskeletal changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Minchul; Kim, Miju; Lee, Seunghee; Kuninaka, Shinji; Saya, Hideyuki; Lee, Ho; Lee, Sookyung; Lim, Dae-Sik

    2013-01-01

    Actin cytoskeletal damage induces inactivation of the oncoprotein YAP (Yes-associated protein). It is known that the serine/threonine kinase LATS (large tumour suppressor) inactivates YAP by phosphorylating its Ser127 and Ser381 residues. However, the events downstream of actin cytoskeletal changes that are involved in the regulation of the LATS–YAP pathway and the mechanism by which LATS differentially phosphorylates YAP on Ser127 and Ser381 in vivo have remained elusive. Here, we show that cyclic AMP (cAMP)-dependent protein kinase (PKA) phosphorylates LATS and thereby enhances its activity sufficiently to phosphorylate YAP on Ser381. We also found that PKA activity is involved in all contexts previously reported to trigger the LATS–YAP pathway, including actin cytoskeletal damage, G-protein-coupled receptor activation, and engagement of the Hippo pathway. Inhibition of PKA and overexpression of YAP cooperate to transform normal cells and amplify neural progenitor pools in developing chick embryos. We also implicate neurofibromin 2 as an AKAP (A-kinase-anchoring protein) scaffold protein that facilitates the function of the cAMP/PKA–LATS–YAP pathway. Our study thus incorporates PKA as novel component of the Hippo pathway. PMID:23644383

  20. 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.

  1. 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...

  2. Interplay between cytoskeletal stresses and cell adaptation under chronic flow.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deepika Verma

    Full Text Available Using stress sensitive FRET sensors we have measured cytoskeletal stresses in α-actinin and the associated reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton in cells subjected to chronic shear stress. We show that long-term shear stress reduces the average actinin stress and this effect is reversible with removal of flow. The flow-induced changes in cytoskeletal stresses are found to be dynamic, involving a transient decrease in stress (phase-I, a short-term increase (3-6 min (Phase-II, followed by a longer-term decrease that reaches a minimum in ~20 min (Phase-III, before saturating. These changes are accompanied by reorganization of the actin cytoskeleton from parallel F-actin bundles to peripheral bundles. Blocking mechanosensitive ion channels (MSCs with Gd(3+ and GsMTx4 (a specific inhibitor eliminated the changes in cytoskeletal stress and the corresponding actin reorganization, indicating that Ca(2+ permeable MSCs participate in the signaling cascades. This study shows that shear stress induced cell adaptation is mediated via MSCs.

  3. Integrin β1 regulates leiomyoma cytoskeletal integrity and growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malik, Minnie; Segars, James; Catherino, William H.

    2014-01-01

    Uterine leiomyomas are characterized by an excessive extracellular matrix, increased mechanical stress, and increased active RhoA. Previously, we observed that mechanical signaling was attenuated in leiomyoma, but the mechanisms responsible remain unclear. Integrins, especially integrin β1, are transmembrane adhesion receptors that couple extracellular matrix stresses to the intracellular cytoskeleton to influence cell proliferation and differentiation. Here we characterized integrin and laminin to signaling in leiomyoma cells. We observed a 2.25 ± 0.32 fold increased expression of integrin β1 in leiomyoma cells, compared to myometrial cells. Antibody-mediated inhibition of integrin β1 led to significant growth inhibition in leiomyoma cells and a loss of cytoskeletal integrity. Specifically, polymerization of actin filaments and formation of focal adhesions were reduced by inhibition of integrin p1. Inhibition of integrin β1 in leiomyoma cells led to 0.81 ± 0.02 fold decrease in active RhoA, and resembled levels found in serum-starved cells. Likewise, inhibition of integrin β1 was accompanied by a decrease in phospho-ERK. Compared to myometrial cells, leiomyoma cells demonstrated increased expression of integrin α6 subunit to laminin receptor (1.91 ± 0.11 fold), and increased expression of laminin 5α (1.52±0.02), laminin 5β (3.06±0.92), and laminin 5γ (1.66 ± 0.06). Of note, leiomyoma cells grown on laminin matrix appear to realign themselves. Taken together, the findings reveal that the attenuated mechanical signaling in leiomyoma cells is accompanied by an increased expression and a dependence on integrin β1 signaling in leiomyoma cells, compared to myometrial cells. PMID:23023061

  4. 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.

  5. (13)C heteronuclear NMR studies of the interaction of cultured neurons and astrocytes and aluminum blockade of the preferential release of citrate from astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meshitsuka, Shunsuke; Aremu, David A

    2008-02-01

    Citrate has been identified as a major tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle constituent preferentially released by astrocytes. We undertook the present study to examine further the nature of metabolic compartmentation in central nervous system tissues using (13)C-labeled glucose and to provide new information on the influence of aluminum on the metabolic interaction between neurons and astrocytes. Metabolites released into the culture medium from astrocytes and neuron-astrocyte coculture, as well as the perchloric acid extracts of the cells were analyzed using 2D (1)H and (13)C NMR spectroscopy. Astrocytes released citrate into the culture medium and the released citrate was consumed by neurons in coculture. Citrate release by astrocytes was blocked in the presence of aluminum, with progressive accumulation of citrate within the cells. We propose citrate supply is a more efficient energy source than lactate for neurons to produce ATP, especially in the hypoglycemic state on account of it being a direct component of the TCA cycle. Astrocytes may be the cellular compartment for aluminum accumulation as a citrate complex in the brain.

  6. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2002-11-29

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamilton Ronald L

    2010-06-01

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

  10. Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF-BB-mediated induction of monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 in human astrocytes: implications for HIV-associated neuroinflammation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bethel-Brown Crystal

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Chemokine (C-C motif ligand 2, also known as monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1 is an important factor for the pathogenesis of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND. The mechanisms of MCP-1-mediated neuropathogenesis, in part, revolve around its neuroinflammatory role and the recruitment of monocytes into the central nervous system (CNS via the disrupted blood-brain barrier (BBB. We have previously demonstrated that HIV-1/HIV-1 Tat upregulate platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF-BB, a known cerebrovascular permeant; subsequently, the present study was aimed at exploring the regulation of MCP-1 by PDGF-BB in astrocytes with implications in HAND. Specifically, the data herein demonstrate that exposure of human astrocytes to HIV-1 LAI elevated PDGF-B and MCP-1 levels. Furthermore, treating astrocytes with the human recombinant PDGF-BB protein significantly increased the production and release of MCP-1 at both the RNA and protein levels. MCP-1 induction was regulated by activation of extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK and p38 mitogen-activated protein (MAP kinases and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K/Akt pathways and the downstream transcription factor, nuclear factor κB (NFκB. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP assays demonstrated increased binding of NFκB to the human MCP-1 promoter following PDGF-BB exposure. Conditioned media from PDGF-BB-treated astrocytes increased monocyte transmigration through human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMECs, an effect that was blocked by STI-571, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor (PDGF receptor (PDGF-R blocker. PDGF-BB-mediated release of MCP-1 was critical for increased permeability in an in vitro BBB model as evidenced by blocking antibody assays. Since MCP-1 is linked to disease severity, understanding its modulation by PDGF-BB could aid in understanding the proinflammatory responses in HAND. These results suggest that astrocyte

  11. Role of cyclic nucleotide-dependent actin cytoskeletal dynamics:Ca(2+](i and force suppression in forskolin-pretreated porcine coronary arteries.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle M Hocking

    Full Text Available Initiation of force generation during vascular smooth muscle contraction involves a rise in intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+]i and phosphorylation of myosin light chains (MLC. However, reversal of these two processes alone does not account for the force inhibition that occurs during relaxation or inhibition of contraction, implicating that other mechanisms, such as actin cytoskeletal rearrangement, play a role in the suppression of force. In this study, we hypothesize that forskolin-induced force suppression is dependent upon changes in actin cytoskeletal dynamics. To focus on the actin cytoskeletal changes, a physiological model was developed in which forskolin treatment of intact porcine coronary arteries (PCA prior to treatment with a contractile agonist resulted in complete suppression of force. Pretreatment of PCA with forskolin suppressed histamine-induced force generation but did not abolish [Ca(2+]i rise or MLC phosphorylation. Additionally, forskolin pretreatment reduced filamentous actin in histamine-treated tissues, and prevented histamine-induced changes in the phosphorylation of the actin-regulatory proteins HSP20, VASP, cofilin, and paxillin. Taken together, these results suggest that forskolin-induced complete force suppression is dependent upon the actin cytoskeletal regulation initiated by the phosphorylation changes of the actin regulatory proteins and not on the MLC dephosphorylation. This model of complete force suppression can be employed to further elucidate the mechanisms responsible for smooth muscle tone, and may offer cues to pathological situations, such as hypertension and vasospasm.

  12. Albumin induces upregulation of matrix metalloproteinase-9 in astrocytes via MAPK and reactive oxygen species-dependent pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranaivo Hantamalala

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Astrocytes are an integral component of the blood–brain barrier (BBB which may be compromised by ischemic or traumatic brain injury. In response to trauma, astrocytes increase expression of the endopeptidase matrix metalloproteinase (MMP-9. Compromise of the BBB leads to the infiltration of fluid and blood-derived proteins including albumin into the brain parenchyma. Albumin has been previously shown to activate astrocytes and induce the production of inflammatory mediators. The effect of albumin on MMP-9 activation in astrocytes is not known. We investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the production of MMP-9 by albumin in astrocytes. Methods Primary enriched astrocyte cultures were used to investigate the effects of exposure to albumin on the release of MMP-9. MMP-9 expression was analyzed by zymography. The involvement of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK, reactive oxygen species (ROS and the TGF-β receptor-dependent pathways were investigated using pharmacological inhibitors. The production of ROS was observed by dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate fluorescence. The level of the MMP-9 inhibitor tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP-1 produced by astrocytes was measured by ELISA. Results We found that albumin induces a time-dependent release of MMP-9 via the activation of p38 MAPK and extracellular signal regulated kinase, but not Jun kinase. Albumin-induced MMP-9 production also involves ROS production upstream of the MAPK pathways. However, albumin-induced increase in MMP-9 is independent of the TGF-β receptor, previously described as a receptor for albumin. Albumin also induces an increase in TIMP-1 via an undetermined mechanism. Conclusions These results link albumin (acting through ROS and the p38 MAPK to the activation of MMP-9 in astrocytes. Numerous studies identify a role for MMP-9 in the mechanisms of compromise of the BBB, epileptogenesis, or synaptic remodeling after ischemia or

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia TCW

    2017-08-01

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

  14. Does rapid and physiological astrocyte-neuron signalling amplify epileptic activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henneberger, Christian

    2017-03-15

    The hippocampus is a key brain region in the pathophysiology of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Long-term changes of its architecture and function on the network and cellular level are well documented in epilepsy. Astrocytes can control many aspects of neuronal function and their long-term alterations over weeks, months and years play an important role in epilepsy. However, a pathophysiological transformation of astrocytes does not seem to be required for astrocytes to contribute to epileptic activity. Some of the properties of physiological astrocyte-neuron communication could allow these cells to exacerbate or synchronize neuronal firing on shorter time scales of milliseconds to minutes. Therefore, these astrocyte-neuron interactions are increasingly recognized as potential contributors to epileptic activity. Fast and reciprocal communication between astrocytes and neurons is enabled by a diverse set of mechanisms that could both amplify and counteract epileptic activity. They may thus promote or cause development of epileptic activity or inhibit it. Mechanisms of astrocyte-neuron interactions that can quickly increase network excitability involve, for example, astrocyte Ca 2+ and Na + signalling, K + buffering, gap junction coupling and metabolism. However, rapid changes of astrocyte neurotransmitter uptake and morphology may also underlie or support development of network hyperexcitability. The temporal characteristics of these interactions, their ability to synchronize neuronal activity and their net effect on network activity will determine their contribution to the emergence or maintenance of epileptic activity. © 2016 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2016 The Physiological Society.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-12-24

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

  16. Changes in cytoskeletal dynamics and nonlinear rheology with metastatic ability in cancer cell lines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coughlin, Mark F; Fredberg, Jeffrey J

    2013-01-01

    Metastatic outcome is impacted by the biophysical state of the primary tumor cell. To determine if changes in cancer cell biophysical properties facilitate metastasis, we quantified cytoskeletal biophysics in well-characterized human skin, bladder, prostate and kidney cell line pairs that differ in metastatic ability. Using magnetic twisting cytometry with optical detection, cytoskeletal dynamics was observed through spontaneous motion of surface bound marker beads and nonlinear rheology was characterized through large amplitude forced oscillations of probe beads. Measurements of cytoskeletal dynamics and nonlinear rheology differed between strongly and weakly metastatic cells. However, no set of biophysical parameters changed systematically with metastatic ability across all cell lines. Compared to their weakly metastatic counterparts, the strongly metastatic kidney cancer cells exhibited both increased cytoskeletal dynamics and stiffness at large deformation which are thought to facilitate the process of vascular invasion. (paper)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tcw, Julia; Wang, Minghui; Pimenova, Anna A; Bowles, Kathryn R; Hartley, Brigham J; Lacin, Emre; Machlovi, Saima I; Abdelaal, Rawan; Karch, Celeste M; Phatnani, Hemali; Slesinger, Paul A; Zhang, Bin; Goate, Alison M; Brennand, Kristen J

    2017-08-08

    Growing evidence implicates the importance of glia, particularly astrocytes, in neurological and psychiatric diseases. Here, we describe a rapid and robust method for the differentiation of highly pure populations of replicative astrocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), via a neural progenitor cell (NPC) intermediate. We evaluated this protocol across 42 NPC lines (derived from 30 individuals). Transcriptomic analysis demonstrated that hiPSC-astrocytes from four individuals are highly similar to primary human fetal astrocytes and characteristic of a non-reactive state. hiPSC-astrocytes respond to inflammatory stimulants, display phagocytic capacity, and enhance microglial phagocytosis. hiPSC-astrocytes also possess spontaneous calcium transient activity. Our protocol is a reproducible, straightforward (single medium), and rapid (method to generate populations of hiPSC-astrocytes that can be used for neuron-astrocyte and microglia-astrocyte co-cultures for the study of neuropsychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Cycloheximide and actinomycin D delay death and affect bcl-2, bax, and Ice gene expression in astrocytes under in vitro ischemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Albert Cheung Hoi; Yung, Hon Wa; Hui, Michael Hung Kit; Lau, Lok Ting; Chen, Xiao Qian; Collins, Richard A

    2003-10-15

    An in vitro ischemia model was established and the effect of the metabolic inhibitors cycloheximide (CHX) and actinomycin D (ActD) on apoptosis in astrocytes under ischemia studied. CHX decreased by 75% the number of cells dying after 6 hr of ischemia compared with control cultures. TdT-mediated dUTP nick end labelling (TUNEL) staining of comparable cultures was reduced by 40%. ActD decreased cell death by 60% compared with controls. The number of TUNEL-positive cells was reduced by 38%. The nuclear shrinkage in TUNEL-positive astrocytes in control cultures did not occur in ActD-treated astrocytes, indicating that nuclear shrinkage and DNA fragmentation during apoptosis are two unrelated processes. Expression of bcl-2 (alpha and beta), bax, and Ice in astrocytes under similar ischemic conditions, as measured by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, indicated that ischemia down-regulated bcl-2 (alpha and beta) and bax. Ice was initially down-regulated from 0 to 4 hr, before returning to control levels after 8 hr of ischemia. ActD decreased the expression of these genes. CHX reduced the expression of bcl-2 (alpha and beta) but increased bax and Ice expression. It is hypothesized that the balance of proapoptotic (Bad, Bax) and antiapoptotic (Bcl-2, Bcl-Xl) proteins determines apoptosis. The data suggest that the ratio of Bcl-2/Bad in astrocytes following ActD and CHX treatment does not decrease as much in untreated cells during ischemia. Our data indicate that it is the ratio of Bcl-2 family members that plays a critical role in determining ischemia-induced apoptosis. It is also important to note that ischemia-induced apoptosis involves the regulation of RNA and protein synthesis. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  19. 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...

  20. Three-dimensional Ca2+ imaging advances understanding of astrocyte biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bindocci, Erika; Savtchouk, Iaroslav; Liaudet, Nicolas; Becker, Denise; Carriero, Giovanni; Volterra, Andrea

    2017-05-19

    Astrocyte communication is typically studied by two-dimensional calcium ion (Ca 2+ ) imaging, but this method has not yielded conclusive data on the role of astrocytes in synaptic and vascular function. We developed a three-dimensional two-photon imaging approach and studied Ca 2+ dynamics in entire astrocyte volumes, including during axon-astrocyte interactions. In both awake mice and brain slices, we found that Ca 2+ activity in an individual astrocyte is scattered throughout the cell, largely compartmented between regions, preponderantly local within regions, and heterogeneously distributed regionally and locally. Processes and endfeet displayed frequent fast activity, whereas the soma was infrequently active. In awake mice, activity was higher than in brain slices, particularly in endfeet and processes, and displayed occasional multifocal cellwide events. Astrocytes responded locally to minimal axonal firing with time-correlated Ca 2+ spots. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  1. Cytoskeletal-assisted dynamics of the mitochondrial reticulum in living cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles, Michelle K; Guenza, Marina G; Capaldi, Roderick A; Marcus, Andrew H

    2002-11-12

    Subcellular organelle dynamics are strongly influenced by interactions with cytoskeletal filaments and their associated motor proteins, and lead to complex multiexponential relaxations that occur over a wide range of spatial and temporal scales. Here we report spatio-temporal measurements of the fluctuations of the mitochondrial reticulum in osteosarcoma cells by using Fourier imaging correlation spectroscopy, over time and distance scales of 10(-2) to 10(3) s and 0.5-2.5 microm. We show that the method allows a more complete description of mitochondrial dynamics, through the time- and length-scale-dependent collective diffusion coefficient D(k,tau), than available by other means. Addition of either nocodazole to disrupt microtubules or cytochalasin D to disassemble microfilaments simplifies the intermediate scattering function. When both drugs are used, the reticulum morphology of mitochondria is retained even though the cytoskeletal elements have been de-polymerized. The dynamics of the organelle are then primarily diffusive and can be modeled as a collection of friction points interconnected by elastic springs. This study quantitatively characterizes organelle dynamics in terms of collective cytoskeletal interactions in living cells.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-15

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

  3. Ketogenic diet and astrocyte/neuron metabolic interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vamecq Joseph

    2007-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana I Amaral

    2013-05-01

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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Hierarchical Distribution of the Tau Cytoskeletal Pathology in the Thalamus of Alzheimer's Disease Patients

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rueb, Udo; Stratmann, Katharina; Heinsen, Helmut; Del Turco, Domenico; Ghebremedhin, Estifanos; Seidel, Kay; den Dunnen, Wilfred; Korf, Horst-Werner

    2015-01-01

    In spite of considerable progress in neuropathological research on Alzheimer's disease (AD), knowledge regarding the exact pathoanatomical distribution of the tau cytoskeletal pathology in the thalamus of AD patients in the advanced Braak and Braak AD stages V or VI of the cortical cytoskeletal

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J A Davies

    2011-03-01

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

  11. Hippocampal Astrocyte Cultures from Adult and Aged Rats Reproduce Changes in Glial Functionality Observed in the Aging Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellaver, Bruna; Souza, Débora Guerini; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2017-05-01

    Astrocytes are dynamic cells that maintain brain homeostasis, regulate neurotransmitter systems, and process synaptic information, energy metabolism, antioxidant defenses, and inflammatory response. Aging is a biological process that is closely associated with hippocampal astrocyte dysfunction. In this sense, we demonstrated that hippocampal astrocytes from adult and aged Wistar rats reproduce the glial functionality alterations observed in aging by evaluating several senescence, glutamatergic, oxidative and inflammatory parameters commonly associated with the aging process. Here, we show that the p21 senescence-associated gene and classical astrocyte markers, such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), vimentin, and actin, changed their expressions in adult and aged astrocytes. Age-dependent changes were also observed in glutamate transporters (glutamate aspartate transporter (GLAST) and glutamate transporter-1 (GLT-1)) and glutamine synthetase immunolabeling and activity. Additionally, according to in vivo aging, astrocytes from adult and aged rats showed an increase in oxidative/nitrosative stress with mitochondrial dysfunction, an increase in RNA oxidation, NADPH oxidase (NOX) activity, superoxide levels, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) expression levels. Changes in antioxidant defenses were also observed. Hippocampal astrocytes also displayed age-dependent inflammatory response with augmentation of proinflammatory cytokine levels, such as TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, IL-18, and messenger RNA (mRNA) levels of cyclo-oxygenase 2 (COX-2). Furthermore, these cells secrete neurotrophic factors, including glia-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), S100 calcium-binding protein B (S100B) protein, and transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β), which changed in an age-dependent manner. Classical signaling pathways associated with aging, such as nuclear factor erythroid-derived 2-like 2 (Nrf2), nuclear factor kappa B (NFκ

  12. In Vivo Evidence for a Lactate Gradient from Astrocytes to Neurons

    KAUST Repository

    Mä chler, Philipp; Wyss, Matthias  T.; Elsayed, Maha; Stobart, Jillian; Gutierrez, Robin; von  Faber-Castell, Alexandra; Kaelin, Vincens; Zuend, Marc; San  Martí n, Alejandro; Romero-Gó mez, Ignacio; Baeza-Lehnert, Felipe; Lengacher, Sylvain; Schneider, Bernard  L.; Aebischer, Patrick; Magistretti, Pierre J.; Barros, L.  Felipe; Weber, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Investigating lactate dynamics in brain tissue is challenging, partly because in vivo data at cellular resolution are not available. We monitored lactate in cortical astrocytes and neurons of mice using the genetically encoded FRET sensor Laconic in combination with two-photon microscopy. An intravenous lactate injection rapidly increased the Laconic signal in both astrocytes and neurons, demonstrating high lactate permeability across tissue. The signal increase was significantly smaller in astrocytes, pointing to higher basal lactate levels in these cells, confirmed by a one-point calibration protocol. Trans-acceleration of the monocarboxylate transporter with pyruvate was able to reduce intracellular lactate in astrocytes but not in neurons. Collectively, these data provide in vivo evidence for a lactate gradient from astrocytes to neurons. This gradient is a prerequisite for a carrier-mediated lactate flux from astrocytes to neurons and thus supports the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle model, in which astrocyte-derived lactate acts as an energy substrate for neurons. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

  13. In Vivo Evidence for a Lactate Gradient from Astrocytes to Neurons

    KAUST Repository

    Mächler, Philipp

    2015-11-19

    Investigating lactate dynamics in brain tissue is challenging, partly because in vivo data at cellular resolution are not available. We monitored lactate in cortical astrocytes and neurons of mice using the genetically encoded FRET sensor Laconic in combination with two-photon microscopy. An intravenous lactate injection rapidly increased the Laconic signal in both astrocytes and neurons, demonstrating high lactate permeability across tissue. The signal increase was significantly smaller in astrocytes, pointing to higher basal lactate levels in these cells, confirmed by a one-point calibration protocol. Trans-acceleration of the monocarboxylate transporter with pyruvate was able to reduce intracellular lactate in astrocytes but not in neurons. Collectively, these data provide in vivo evidence for a lactate gradient from astrocytes to neurons. This gradient is a prerequisite for a carrier-mediated lactate flux from astrocytes to neurons and thus supports the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle model, in which astrocyte-derived lactate acts as an energy substrate for neurons. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.

  14. Zearalenone altered the cytoskeletal structure via ER stress- autophagy- oxidative stress pathway in mouse TM4 Sertoli cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Wanglong; Wang, Bingjie; Si, Mengxue; Zou, Hui; Song, Ruilong; Gu, Jianhong; Yuan, Yan; Liu, Xuezhong; Zhu, Guoqiang; Bai, Jianfa; Bian, Jianchun; Liu, ZongPing

    2018-02-20

    The aim of this study was to investigate the molecular mechanisms of the destruction of cytoskeletal structure by Zearalenone (ZEA) in mouse-derived TM4 cells. In order to investigate the role of autophagy, oxidative stress and endoplasmic reticulum(ER) stress in the process of destruction of cytoskeletal structure, the effects of ZEA on the cell viability, cytoskeletal structure, autophagy, oxidative stress, ER stress, MAPK and PI3K- AKT- mTOR signaling pathways were studied. The data demonstrated that ZEA damaged the cytoskeletal structure through the induction of autophagy that leads to the alteration of cytoskeletal structure via elevated oxidative stress. Our results further showed that the autophagy was stimulated by ZEA through PI3K-AKT-mTOR and MAPK signaling pathways in TM4 cells. In addition, ZEA also induced the ER stress which was involved in the induction of the autophagy through inhibiting the ERK signal pathway to suppress the phosphorylation of mTOR. ER stress was involved in the damage of cytoskeletal structure through induction of autophagy by producing ROS. Taken together, this study revealed that ZEA altered the cytoskeletal structure via oxidative stress - autophagy- ER stress pathway in mouse TM4 Sertoli cells.

  15. Andrographolide protects mouse astrocytes against hypoxia injury by promoting autophagy and S100B expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Du

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Andrographolide (ANDRO has been studied for its immunomodulation, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotection effects. Because brain hypoxia is the most common factor of secondary brain injury after traumatic brain injury, we studied the role and possible mechanism of ANDRO in this process using hypoxia-injured astrocytes. Mouse cortical astrocytes C8-D1A (astrocyte type I clone from C57/BL6 strains were subjected to 3 and 21% of O2 for various times (0–12 h to establish an astrocyte hypoxia injury model in vitro. After hypoxia and ANDRO administration, the changes in cell viability and apoptosis were assessed using CCK-8 and flow cytometry. Expression changes in apoptosis-related proteins, autophagy-related proteins, main factors of JNK pathway, ATG5, and S100B were determined by western blot. Hypoxia remarkably damaged C8-D1A cells evidenced by reduction of cell viability and induction of apoptosis. Hypoxia also induced autophagy and overproduction of S100B. ANDRO reduced cell apoptosis and promoted cell autophagy and S100B expression. After ANDRO administration, autophagy-related proteins, S-100B, JNK pathway proteins, and ATG5 were all upregulated, while autophagy-related proteins and s100b were downregulated when the jnk pathway was inhibited or ATG5 was knocked down. ANDRO conferred a survival advantage to hypoxia-injured astrocytes by reducing cell apoptosis and promoting autophagy and s100b expression. Furthermore, the promotion of autophagy and s100b expression by ANDRO was via activation of jnk pathway and regulation of ATG5.

  16. SOX9 is an astrocyte-specific nuclear marker in the adult brain outside the neurogenic regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sun, Wei; Cornwell, Adam; Li, Jiashu

    2017-01-01

    transporter 1 (GLT1), aquaporin-4, aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 family member L1, and other proteins. However, these proteins may all be regulated both developmentally and functionally, restricting their utility. To identify a nuclear marker pathognomonic of astrocytic phenotype, we assessed differential RNA...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1993-10-01

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

  18. 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

  19. Stress and strain in the contractile and cytoskeletal filaments of airway smooth muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Linhong; Bosse, Ynuk; Brown, Nathan; Chin, Leslie Y M; Connolly, Sarah C; Fairbank, Nigel J; King, Greg G; Maksym, Geoffrey N; Paré, Peter D; Seow, Chun Y; Stephen, Newman L

    2009-10-01

    Stress and strain are omnipresent in the lung due to constant lung volume fluctuation associated with respiration, and they modulate the phenotype and function of all cells residing in the airways including the airway smooth muscle (ASM) cell. There is ample evidence that the ASM cell is very sensitive to its physical environment, and can alter its structure and/or function accordingly, resulting in either desired or undesired consequences. The forces that are either conferred to the ASM cell due to external stretching or generated inside the cell must be borne and transmitted inside the cytoskeleton (CSK). Thus, maintaining appropriate levels of stress and strain within the CSK is essential for maintaining normal function. Despite the importance, the mechanisms regulating/dysregulating ASM cytoskeletal filaments in response to stress and strain remained poorly understood until only recently. For example, it is now understood that ASM length and force are dynamically regulated, and both can adapt over a wide range of length, rendering ASM one of the most malleable living tissues. The malleability reflects the CSK's dynamic mechanical properties and plasticity, both of which strongly interact with the loading on the CSK, and all together ultimately determines airway narrowing in pathology. Here we review the latest advances in our understanding of stress and strain in ASM cells, including the organization of contractile and cytoskeletal filaments, range and adaptation of functional length, structural and functional changes of the cell in response to mechanical perturbation, ASM tone as a mediator of strain-induced responses, and the novel glassy dynamic behaviors of the CSK in relation to asthma pathophysiology.

  20. Nonproductive human immunodeficiency virus type 1 infection of human fetal astrocytes: independence from CD4 and major chemokine receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabri, F; Tresoldi, E; Di Stefano, M; Polo, S; Monaco, M C; Verani, A; Fiore, J R; Lusso, P; Major, E; Chiodi, F; Scarlatti, G

    1999-11-25

    Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection of the brain is associated with neurological manifestations both in adults and in children. The primary target for HIV-1 infection in the brain is the microglia, but astrocytes can also be infected. We tested 26 primary HIV-1 isolates for their capacity to infect human fetal astrocytes in culture. Eight of these isolates, independent of their biological phenotype and chemokine receptor usage, were able to infect astrocytes. Although no sustained viral replication could be demonstrated, the virus was recovered by coculture with receptive cells such as macrophages or on stimulation with interleukin-1beta. To gain knowledge into the molecular events that regulate attachment and penetration of HIV-1 in astrocytes, we investigated the expression of several chemokine receptors. Fluorocytometry and calcium-mobilization assay did not provide evidence of expression of any of the major HIV-1 coreceptors, including CXCR4, CCR5, CCR3, and CCR2b, as well as the CD4 molecule on the cell surface of human fetal astrocytes. However, mRNA transcripts for CXCR4, CCR5, Bonzo/STRL33/TYMSTR, and APJ were detected by RT-PCR. Furthermore, infection of astrocytes by HIV-1 isolates with different chemokine receptor usage was not inhibited by the chemokines SDF-1beta, RANTES, MIP-1beta, or MCP-1 or by antibodies directed against the third variable region or the CD4 binding site of gp120. These data show that astrocytes can be infected by primary HIV-1 isolates via a mechanism independent of CD4 or major chemokine receptors. Furthermore, astrocytes are potential carriers of latent HIV-1 and on activation may be implicated in spreading the infection to other neighbouring cells, such as microglia or macrophages. Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

  1. 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...

  2. A Wnt1 regulated Frizzled-1/β-Catenin signaling pathway as a candidate regulatory circuit controlling mesencephalic dopaminergic neuron-astrocyte crosstalk: Therapeutical relevance for neuron survival and neuroprotection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pluchino Stefano

    2011-07-01

    /β-catenin antagonist within the SN induces reactive astrocytosis and acutely inhibits TH+ neuron survival in ipsilateral SNpc, an effect efficiently prevented by pharmacological activation of β-catenin signaling within the SNpc. Conclusion These results defining a novel Wnt1/Fzd-1/β-catenin astrocyte-DA autoprotective loop provide a new mechanistic inside into the regulation of pro-survival processes, with potentially relevant consequences for drug design or drug action in Parkinson's disease.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  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. Hierarchical Distribution of the Tau Cytoskeletal Pathology in the Thalamus of Alzheimer's Disease Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rüb, Udo; Stratmann, Katharina; Heinsen, Helmut; Del Turco, Domenico; Ghebremedhin, Estifanos; Seidel, Kay; den Dunnen, Wilfred; Korf, Horst-Werner

    2016-01-01

    In spite of considerable progress in neuropathological research on Alzheimer's disease (AD), knowledge regarding the exact pathoanatomical distribution of the tau cytoskeletal pathology in the thalamus of AD patients in the advanced Braak and Braak AD stages V or VI of the cortical cytoskeletal pathology is still fragmentary. Investigation of serial 100 μm-thick brain tissue sections through the thalamus of clinically diagnosed AD patients with Braak and Braak AD stage V or VI cytoskeletal pathologies immunostained with the anti-tau AT8 antibody, along with the affection of the extraterritorial reticular nucleus of the thalamus, reveals a consistent and severe tau immunoreactive cytoskeletal pathology in the limbic nuclei of the thalamus (e.g., paraventricular, anterodorsal and laterodorsal nuclei, limitans-suprageniculate complex). The thalamic nuclei integrated into the associative networks of the human brain (e.g., ventral anterior and mediodorsal nuclei) are only mildly affected, while its motor precerebellar (ventral lateral nucleus) and sensory nuclei (e.g., lateral and medial geniculate bodies, ventral posterior medial and lateral nuclei, parvocellular part of the ventral posterior medial nucleus) are more or less spared. The highly stereotypical and characteristic thalamic distribution pattern of the AD-related tau cytoskeletal pathology represents an anatomical mirror of the hierarchical topographic distribution of the cytoskeletal pathology in the interconnected regions of the cerebral cortex of AD patients. These pathoanatomical parallels support the pathophysiological concept of a transneuronal spread of the disease process of AD along anatomical pathways. The AD-related tau cytoskeletal pathology in the thalamus most likely contributes substantially to the neuropsychiatric disease symptoms (e.g., dementia), attention deficits, oculomotor dysfunctions, altered non-discriminative aspects of pain experience of AD patients, and the disruption of their

  8. Andrographolide induces Nrf2 and heme oxygenase 1 in astrocytes by activating p38 MAPK and ERK.

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    Wong, Siew Ying; Tan, Michelle G K; Wong, Peter T H; Herr, Deron R; Lai, Mitchell K P

    2016-09-23

    Andrographolide is the major labdane diterpenoid originally isolated from Andrographis paniculata and has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidative effects. However, there is a dearth of studies on the potential therapeutic utility of andrographolide in neuroinflammatory conditions. Here, we aimed to investigate the mechanisms underlying andrographolide's effect on the expression of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) in primary astrocytes. Measurements of the effects of andrograholide on antioxidant HO-1 and its transcription factor, Nrf2, include gene expression, protein turnover, and activation of putative signaling regulators. Andrographolide potently activated Nrf2 and also upregulated HO-1 expression in primary astrocytes. Andrographolide's effects on Nrf2 seemed to be biphasic, with acute (within 1 h) reductions in Nrf2 ubiquitination efficiency and turnover rate, followed by upregulation of Nrf2 mRNA between 8 and 24 h. The acute regulation of Nrf2 by andrographolide seemed to be independent of Keap1 and partly mediated by p38 MAPK and ERK signaling. These data provide further insights into the mechanisms underlying andrographolide's effects on astrocyte-mediated antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory responses and support the further assessment of andrographolide as a potential therapeutic for neurological conditions in which oxidative stress and neuroinflammation are implicated.

  9. Disruption of astrocyte-neuron cholesterol cross talk affects neuronal function in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenza, M; Marullo, M; Di Paolo, E; Cesana, E; Zuccato, C; Biella, G; Cattaneo, E

    2015-04-01

    In the adult brain, neurons require local cholesterol production, which is supplied by astrocytes through apoE-containing lipoproteins. In Huntington's disease (HD), such cholesterol biosynthesis in the brain is severely reduced. Here we show that this defect, occurring in astrocytes, is detrimental for HD neurons. Astrocytes bearing the huntingtin protein containing increasing CAG repeats secreted less apoE-lipoprotein-bound cholesterol in the medium. Conditioned media from HD astrocytes and lipoprotein-depleted conditioned media from wild-type (wt) astrocytes were equally detrimental in a neurite outgrowth assay and did not support synaptic activity in HD neurons, compared with conditions of cholesterol supplementation or conditioned media from wt astrocytes. Molecular perturbation of cholesterol biosynthesis and efflux in astrocytes caused similarly altered astrocyte-neuron cross talk, whereas enhancement of glial SREBP2 and ABCA1 function reversed the aspects of neuronal dysfunction in HD. These findings indicate that astrocyte-mediated cholesterol homeostasis could be a potential therapeutic target to ameliorate neuronal dysfunction in HD.

  10. Hippocampal astrocytes are necessary for antidepressant treatment of learned helplessness rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwata, Masaaki; Shirayama, Yukihiko; Ishida, Hisahito; Hazama, Gen-i; Nakagome, Kazuyuki

    2011-08-01

    The astrocyte is a major component of the neural network and plays a role in brain function. Previous studies demonstrated changes in the number of astrocytes in depression. In this study, we examined alterations in the number of astrocytes in the learned helplessness (LH) rat, an animal model of depression. The numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes in the dentate gyrus (molecular layer, subgranular zone, and hilus), and CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus were significantly increased 2 and 8 days after attainment of LH. Subchronic treatment with imipramine showed a tendency (although not statistically significant) to decrease the LH-induced increment of activated astrocytes in the CA3 region and dentate gyrus. Furthermore, subchronic treatment of naïve rats with imipramine did not alter the numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes. However, the antidepressant-like effects of imipramine in the LH paradigm were blocked when fluorocitrate (a reversible inhibitor of astrocyte function) was injected into the dentate gyrus or CA3 region. Injection of fluorocitrate into naive rats failed to induce behavioral deficits in the conditioned avoidance test. These results indicate that astrocytes are responsive to the antidepressant-like effect of imipramine in the dentate gyrus and CA3 region of the hippocampus. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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

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    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.

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

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

    2010-03-15

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

  13. 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.

  14. Cytoskeletal protein translation and expression in the rat brain are stressor-dependent and region-specific.

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    Petra Sántha

    Full Text Available Stress is an integral component of life that can sometimes cause a critical overload, depending on the qualitative and quantitative natures of the stressors. The involvement of actin, the predominant component of dendritic integrity, is a plausible candidate factor in stress-induced neuronal cytoskeletal changes. The major aim of this study was to compare the effects of three different stress conditions on the transcription and translation of actin-related cytoskeletal genes in the rat brain. Male Wistar rats were exposed to one or other of the frequently used models of physical stress, i.e. electric foot shock stress (EFSS, forced swimming stress (FSS, or psychosocial stress (PSS for periods of 3, 7, 14, or 21 days. The relative mRNA and protein expressions of β-actin, cofilin and mitogen-activated protein kinase 1 (MAPK-1 were determined by qRT- PCR and western blotting from hippocampus and frontal cortex samples. Stressor-specific alterations in both β-actin and cofilin expression levels were seen after stress. These alterations were most pronounced in response to EFSS, and exhibited a U-shaped time course. FSS led to a significant β-actin mRNA expression elevation in the hippocampus and the frontal cortex after 3 and 7 days, respectively, without any subsequent change. PSS did not cause any change in β-actin or cofilin mRNA or protein expression in the examined brain regions. EFSS, FSS and PSS had no effect on the expression of MAPK-1 mRNA at any tested time point. These findings indicate a very delicate, stress type-dependent regulation of neuronal cytoskeletal components in the rat hippocampus and frontal cortex.

  15. 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.

  16. Propofol-induced rno-miR-665 targets BCL2L1 and influences apoptosis in rodent developing hippocampal astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Wen-Chong; Liang, Zuo-Di; Pei, Ling

    2015-12-01

    Propofol exerts neurotoxic effects on the developing mammalian brains, but the underlying molecular mechanism remains unclear. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small noncoding RNAs that modulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. However, in specific types of neurocytes, the detailed functions of miRNAs were not entirely understood. We investigated the potential role of miRNAs in astrocyte pathogenesis caused by propofol. We performed genome-wide microRNA expression profiling in immature cultured hippocampal astrocytes by microarray analysis and predicted their targets and functions using bioinformatics tools. The functional effects of one differentially expressed miRNA were examined experimentally in relation to astrocyte viability. The results showed that 13 miRNAs were significantly differentially expressed after both short-term exposure to high-concentration propofol (10 μg/ml for 1h) and long-term exposure to low-concentration propofol (0.9 μg/ml for 48 h), including rno-miR-665, differing significantly between the 2. Bioinformatics predicted putative binding sites for rno-miR-665 existing in the 3'-untranslated region of Bcl-2-like protein 1 BCL2L1 (Bcl-xl) mRNA. Moreover, such relationship was assessed by luciferase reporter assay, qRT-PCR and western blot. Rno-miR-665 which was significantly up-regulated by propofol can suppress BCL2L1 and elevate cleaved caspase-3 expression in immature astrocytes in vitro. Apoptosis of developing hippocampal astrocytes was thus significantly influenced by propofol or rno-miR-665, or both. Taken together, rno-miR-665 is involved in the neurotoxicity induced by propofol via a caspase-3 mediated mechanism by negatively regulating BCL2L1. It might act as an alternative therapeutic target for treatment of neurological disorders in peadiatric prolonged anesthesia or sedation with propofol clinically. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  17. The metabolic trinity, glucose-glycogen-lactate, links astrocytes and neurons in brain energetics, signaling, memory, and gene expression.

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    Dienel, Gerald A

    2017-01-10

    Glucose, glycogen, and lactate are traditionally identified with brain energetics, ATP turnover, and pathophysiology. However, recent studies extend their roles to include involvement in astrocytic signaling, memory consolidation, and gene expression. Emerging roles for these brain fuels and a readily-diffusible by-product are linked to differential fluxes in glycolytic and oxidative pathways, astrocytic glycogen dynamics, redox shifts, neuron-astrocyte interactions, and regulation of astrocytic activities by noradrenaline released from the locus coeruleus. Disproportionate utilization of carbohydrate compared with oxygen during brain activation is influenced by catecholamines, but its physiological basis is not understood and its magnitude may be affected by technical aspects of metabolite assays. Memory consolidation and gene expression are impaired by glycogenolysis blockade, and prevention of these deficits by injection of abnormally-high concentrations of lactate was interpreted as a requirement for astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttling in memory and gene expression. However, lactate transport was not measured and evidence for presumed shuttling is not compelling. In fact, high levels of lactate used to preserve memory consolidation and induce gene expression are sufficient to shut down neuronal firing via the HCAR1 receptor. In contrast, low lactate levels activate a receptor in locus coeruleus that stimulates noradrenaline release that may activate astrocytes throughout brain. Physiological relevance of exogenous concentrations of lactate used to mimic and evaluate metabolic, molecular, and behavioral effects of lactate requires close correspondence with the normal lactate levels, the biochemical and cellular sources and sinks, and specificity of lactate delivery to target cells. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Differential induction of heme oxygenase and other stress proteins in cultured hippocampal astrocytes and neurons by inorganic lead

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cabell, Leigh; Ferguson, Charles; Luginbill, Deana; Kern, Marcey; Weingart, Adam; Audesirk, Gerald

    2004-01-01

    We examined the effects of exposure to inorganic lead (Pb 2+ ) on the induction of stress proteins in cultured hippocampal neurons and astrocytes, with particular emphasis on the induction of heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1). In radiolabeled neuronal cultures, Pb 2+ exposure had no significant effect on the synthesis of any protein at any concentration (up to 250 μM) or duration of exposure (up to 4 days). In radiolabeled astrocyte cultures, however, Pb 2+ exposure (100 nM to 100 μM; 1-4 days) increased synthesis of proteins with approximate molecular weights of 23, 32, 45, 57, 72, and 90 kDa. Immunoblot experiments showed that Pb 2+ exposure (100 nM to 10 μM, 1-14 days) induces HO-1 synthesis in astrocytes, but not in neurons; this is probably the 32-kDa protein. The other heme oxygenase isoform, HO-2, is present in both neurons and astrocytes, but is not inducible by Pb 2+ at concentrations up to 100 μM. HO-1 can be induced by a variety of stimuli. We found that HO-1 induction in astrocytes is increased by combined exposure to Pb 2+ and many other stresses, including heat, nitric oxide, H 2 O 2 , and superoxide. One of the stimuli that may induce HO-1 is oxidative stress. Lead exposure causes oxidative stress in many cell types, including astrocytes. Induction of HO-1 by Pb 2+ is reduced by the hydroxyl radical scavengers dimethylthiourea (DMTU) and mannitol, but not by inhibitors of calmodulin, calmodulin-dependent protein kinases, protein kinase C, or extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK). Therefore, we conclude that oxidative stress is an important mechanism by which Pb 2+ induces HO-1 synthesis in astrocytes

  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. Interdependence of laminin-mediated clustering of lipid rafts and the dystrophin complex in astrocytes.

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    Noël, Geoffroy; Tham, Daniel Kai Long; Moukhles, Hakima

    2009-07-17

    Astrocyte endfeet surrounding blood vessels are active domains involved in water and potassium ion transport crucial to the maintenance of water and potassium ion homeostasis in brain. A growing body of evidence points to a role for dystroglycan and its interaction with perivascular laminin in the targeting of the dystrophin complex and the water-permeable channel, aquaporin 4 (AQP4), at astrocyte endfeet. However, the mechanisms underlying such compartmentalization remain poorly understood. In the present study we found that AQP4 resided in Triton X-100-insoluble fraction, whereas dystroglycan was recovered in the soluble fraction in astrocytes. Cholesterol depletion resulted in the translocation of a pool of AQP4 to the soluble fraction indicating that its distribution is indeed associated with cholesterol-rich membrane domains. Upon laminin treatment AQP4 and the dystrophin complex, including dystroglycan, reorganized into laminin-associated clusters enriched for the lipid raft markers GM1 and flotillin-1 but not caveolin-1. Reduced diffusion rates of GM1 in the laminin-induced clusters were indicative of the reorganization of raft components in these domains. In addition, both cholesterol depletion and dystroglycan silencing reduced the number and area of laminin-induced clusters of GM1, AQP4, and dystroglycan. These findings demonstrate the interdependence between laminin binding to dystroglycan and GM1-containing lipid raft reorganization and provide novel insight into the dystrophin complex regulation of AQP4 polarization in astrocytes.

  1. Functional alterations of astrocytes in mental disorders: pharmacological significance as a drug target

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    Yutaka eKoyama

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Astrocytes play an essential role in supporting brain functions in physiological and pathological states. Modulation of their pathophysiological responses have beneficial actions on nerve tissue injured by brain insults and neurodegenerative diseases, therefore astrocytes are recognized as promising targets for neuroprotective drugs. Recent investigations have identified several astrocytic mechanisms for modulating synaptic transmission and neural plasticity. These include altered expression of transporters for neurotransmitters, release of gliotransmitters and neurotrophic factors, and intercellular communication through gap junctions. Investigation of patients with mental disorders shows morphological and functional alterations in astrocytes. According to these observations, manipulation of astrocytic function by gene mutation and pharmacological tools reproduce mental disorder-like behavior in experimental animals. Some drugs clinically used for mental disorders affect astrocyte function. As experimental evidence shows their role in the pathogenesis of mental disorders, astrocytes have gained much attention as drug targets for mental disorders. In this article, I review functional alterations of astrocytes in several mental disorders including schizophrenia, mood disorder, drug dependence, and neurodevelopmental disorders. The pharmacological significance of astrocytes in mental disorders is also discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-01

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

  3. Characterization of cytoskeletal and junctional proteins expressed by cells cultured from human arachnoid granulation tissue

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    Mehta Bhavya C

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The arachnoid granulations (AGs are projections of the arachnoid membrane into the dural venous sinuses. They function, along with the extracranial lymphatics, to circulate the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF to the systemic venous circulation. Disruption of normal CSF dynamics may result in increased intracranial pressures causing many problems including headaches and visual loss, as in idiopathic intracranial hypertension and hydrocephalus. To study the role of AGs in CSF egress, we have grown cells from human AG tissue in vitro and have characterized their expression of those cytoskeletal and junctional proteins that may function in the regulation of CSF outflow. Methods Human AG tissue was obtained at autopsy, and explanted to cell culture dishes coated with fibronectin. Typically, cells migrated from the explanted tissue after 7–10 days in vitro. Second or third passage cells were seeded onto fibronectin-coated coverslips at confluent densities and grown to confluency for 7–10 days. Arachnoidal cells were tested using immunocytochemical methods for the expression of several common cytoskeletal and junctional proteins. Second and third passage cultures were also labeled with the common endothelial markers CD-31 or VE-cadherin (CD144 and their expression was quantified using flow cytometry analysis. Results Confluent cultures of arachnoidal cells expressed the intermediate filament protein vimentin. Cytokeratin intermediate filaments were expressed variably in a subpopulation of cells. The cultures also expressed the junctional proteins connexin43, desmoplakin 1 and 2, E-cadherin, and zonula occludens-1. Flow cytometry analysis indicated that second and third passage cultures failed to express the endothelial cell markers CD31 or VE-cadherin in significant quantities, thereby showing that these cultures did not consist of endothelial cells from the venous sinus wall. Conclusion To our knowledge, this is the first report of

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2008-01-01

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

  5. Effects of aspartame metabolites on astrocytes and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rycerz, Karol; Jaworska-Adamu, Jadwiga Elżbieta

    2013-01-01

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

  6. 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.

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

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

    2013-04-01

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

  8. 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.

  9. Connexin-based intercellular communication and astrocyte heterogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theis, Martin; Giaume, Christian

    2012-12-03

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Yong-Jing; Zhang, Ling; Samad, Omar Abdel; Suter, Marc R; Yasuhiko, Kawasaki; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Park, Jong-Yeon; Lind, Anne-Li; Ma, Qiufu; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2009-04-01

    Our previous study showed that activation of c-jun-N-terminal kinase (JNK) in spinal astrocytes plays an important role in neuropathic pain sensitization. We further investigated how JNK regulates neuropathic pain. In cultured astrocytes, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) transiently activated JNK via TNF receptor-1. Cytokine array indicated that the chemokine CCL2/MCP-1 (monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) was strongly induced by the TNF-alpha/JNK pathway. MCP-1 upregulation by TNF-alpha was dose dependently inhibited by the JNK inhibitors SP600125 (anthra[1,9-cd]pyrazol-6(2H)-one) and D-JNKI-1. Spinal injection of TNF-alpha produced JNK-dependent pain hypersensitivity and MCP-1 upregulation in the spinal cord. Furthermore, spinal nerve ligation (SNL) induced persistent neuropathic pain and MCP-1 upregulation in the spinal cord, and both were suppressed by D-JNKI-1. Remarkably, MCP-1 was primarily induced in spinal cord astrocytes after SNL. Spinal administration of MCP-1 neutralizing antibody attenuated neuropathic pain. Conversely, spinal application of MCP-1 induced heat hyperalgesia and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase in superficial spinal cord dorsal horn neurons, indicative of central sensitization (hyperactivity of dorsal horn neurons). Patch-clamp recordings in lamina II neurons of isolated spinal cord slices showed that MCP-1 not only enhanced spontaneous EPSCs but also potentiated NMDA- and AMPA-induced currents. Finally, the MCP-1 receptor CCR2 was expressed in neurons and some non-neuronal cells in the spinal cord. Together, we have revealed a previously unknown mechanism of MCP-1 induction and action. MCP-1 induction in astrocytes after JNK activation contributes to central sensitization and neuropathic pain facilitation by enhancing excitatory synaptic transmission. Inhibition of the JNK/MCP-1 pathway may provide a new therapy for neuropathic pain management.

  11. Characteristics of calcium signaling in astrocytes induced by photostimulation with femtosecond laser

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yuan; Zhang, Yuan; Zhou, Wei; Liu, Xiuli; Zeng, Shaoqun; Luo, Qingming

    2010-05-01

    Astrocytes have been identified to actively contribute to brain functions through Ca2+ signaling, serving as a bridge to communicate with neurons and other brain cells. However, conventional stimulation techniques are hard to apply to delicate investigations on astrocytes. Our group previously reported photostimulation with a femtosecond laser to evoke astrocytic calcium (Ca2+) waves, providing a noninvasive and efficient approach with highly precise targeting. In this work, detailed characteristics of astrocytic Ca2+ signaling induced by photostimulation are presented. In a purified astrocytic culture, after the illumination of a femtosecond laser onto one cell, a Ca2+ wave throughout the network with reduced speed is induced, and intracellular Ca2+ oscillations are observed. The intercellular propagation is pharmacologically confirmed to be mainly mediated by ATP through P2Y receptors. Different patterns of Ca2+ elevations with increased amplitude in the stimulated astrocyte are discovered by varying the femtosecond laser power, which is correspondingly followed by broader intercellular waves. These indicate that the strength of photogenerated Ca2+ signaling in astrocytes has a positive relationship with the stimulating laser power. Therefore, distinct Ca2+ signaling is feasibly available for specific studies on astrocytes by employing precisely controlled photostimulation.

  12. 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.

  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. Paracrine effect of carbon monoxide - astrocytes promote neuroprotection through purinergic signaling in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queiroga, Cláudia S F; Alves, Raquel M A; Conde, Sílvia V; Alves, Paula M; Vieira, Helena L A

    2016-08-15

    The neuroprotective role of carbon monoxide (CO) has been studied in a cell-autonomous mode. Herein, a new concept is disclosed - CO affects astrocyte-neuron communication in a paracrine manner to promote neuroprotection. Neuronal survival was assessed when co-cultured with astrocytes that had been pre-treated or not with CO. The CO-pre-treated astrocytes reduced neuronal cell death, and the cellular mechanisms were investigated, focusing on purinergic signaling. CO modulates astrocytic metabolism and extracellular ATP content in the co-culture medium. Moreover, several antagonists of P1 adenosine and P2 ATP receptors partially reverted CO-induced neuroprotection through astrocytes. Likewise, knocking down expression of the neuronal P1 adenosine receptor A2A-R (encoded by Adora2a) reverted the neuroprotective effects of CO-exposed astrocytes. The neuroprotection of CO-treated astrocytes also decreased following prevention of ATP or adenosine release from astrocytic cells and inhibition of extracellular ATP metabolism into adenosine. Finally, the neuronal downstream event involves TrkB (also known as NTRK2) receptors and BDNF. Pharmacological and genetic inhibition of TrkB receptors reverts neuroprotection triggered by CO-treated astrocytes. Furthermore, the neuronal ratio of BDNF to pro-BDNF increased in the presence of CO-treated astrocytes and decreased whenever A2A-R expression was silenced. In summary, CO prevents neuronal cell death in a paracrine manner by targeting astrocytic metabolism through purinergic signaling. © 2016. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. 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.

  16. Tetraspanin 7 regulates sealing zone formation and the bone-resorbing activity of osteoclasts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kwon, Jun-Oh; Lee, Yong Deok; Kim, Haemin; Kim, Min Kyung; Song, Min-Kyoung; Lee, Zang Hee; Kim, Hong-Hee, E-mail: hhbkim@snu.ac.kr

    2016-09-02

    Tetraspanin family proteins regulate morphology, motility, fusion, and signaling in various cell types. We investigated the role of the tetraspanin 7 (Tspan7) isoform in the differentiation and function of osteoclasts. Tspan7 was up-regulated during osteoclastogenesis. When Tspan7 expression was reduced in primary precursor cells by siRNA-mediated gene knock-down, the generation of multinuclear osteoclasts was not affected. However, a striking cytoskeletal abnormality was observed: the formation of the podosome belt structure was inhibited and the microtubular network were disrupted by Tspan7 knock-down. Decreases in acetylated microtubules and levels of phosphorylated Src and Pyk2 in Tspan7 knock-down cells supported the involvement of Tspan7 in cytoskeletal rearrangement signaling in osteoclasts. This cytoskeletal defect interfered with sealing zone formation and subsequently the bone-resorbing activity of mature osteoclasts on dentin surfaces. Our results suggest that Tspan7 plays an important role in cytoskeletal organization required for the bone-resorbing function of osteoclasts by regulating signaling to Src, Pyk2, and microtubules. - Highlights: • Tspan7 expression is up-regulated during osteoclastogenesis. • Tspan7 regulates podosome belt organization in osteoclasts. • Tspan7 is crucial for sealing zone formation and bone-resorption by osteoclasts. • Src and Pyk2 phosphorylation and microtubule acetylation mediate Tspan7 function.

  17. Active Polar Gels: a Paradigm for Cytoskeletal Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Julicher, Frank

    2006-03-01

    The cytoskeleton of eucaryotic cells is an intrinsically dynamic network of rod-like filaments. Active processes on the molecular scale such as the action of motor proteins and the polymerization and depolymerization of filaments drive active dynamic behaviors while consuming chemical energy in the form of a fuel. Such emergent dynamics is regulated by the cell and is important for many cellular processes such as cell locomotion and cell division. From a general point of view the cytoskeleton represents an active gel-like material with interesting material properties. We present a general theory of active viscoelastic materials made of polar filaments which is motivated by the the cytoskeleton. The continuous consumption of a fuel generates a non- equilibrium state characterized by the generation of flows and stresses. Our theory can be applied to experiments in which cytoskeletal patterns are set in motion by active processes such as those which are at work in cells. It can also capture generic aspects of the flows and stress profiles which occur during cell locomotion.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-08-01

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

  19. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-01-01

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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Inhibition of spinal astrocytic c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK activation correlates with the analgesic effects of ketamine in neuropathic pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wang Wen

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We have previously reported that inhibition of astrocytic activation contributes to the analgesic effects of intrathecal ketamine on spinal nerve ligation (SNL-induced neuropathic pain. However, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear. c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK, a member of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK family, has been reported to be critical for spinal astrocytic activation and neuropathic pain development after SNL. Ketamine can decrease lipopolysaccharide (LPS-induced phosphorylated JNK (pJNK expression and could thus exert its anti-inflammatory effect. We hypothesized that inhibition of astrocytic JNK activation might be involved in the suppressive effect of ketamine on SNL-induced spinal astrocytic activation. Methods Immunofluorescence histochemical staining was used to detect SNL-induced spinal pJNK expression and localization. The effects of ketamine on SNL-induced mechanical allodynia were confirmed by behavioral testing. Immunofluorescence histochemistry and Western blot were used to quantify the SNL-induced spinal pJNK expression after ketamine administration. Results The present study showed that SNL induced ipsilateral pJNK up-regulation in astrocytes but not microglia or neurons within the spinal dorsal horn. Intrathecal ketamine relieved SNL-induced mechanical allodynia without interfering with motor performance. Additionally, intrathecal administration of ketamine attenuated SNL-induced spinal astrocytic JNK activation in a dose-dependent manner, but not JNK protein expression. Conclusions The present results suggest that inhibition of JNK activation may be involved in the suppressive effects of ketamine on SNL-induced spinal astrocyte activation. Therefore, inhibition of spinal JNK activation may be involved in the analgesic effects of ketamine on SNL-induced neuropathic pain.

  4. Inhibition of spinal astrocytic c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation correlates with the analgesic effects of ketamine in neuropathic pain

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Background We have previously reported that inhibition of astrocytic activation contributes to the analgesic effects of intrathecal ketamine on spinal nerve ligation (SNL)-induced neuropathic pain. However, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear. c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), a member of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) family, has been reported to be critical for spinal astrocytic activation and neuropathic pain development after SNL. Ketamine can decrease lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced phosphorylated JNK (pJNK) expression and could thus exert its anti-inflammatory effect. We hypothesized that inhibition of astrocytic JNK activation might be involved in the suppressive effect of ketamine on SNL-induced spinal astrocytic activation. Methods Immunofluorescence histochemical staining was used to detect SNL-induced spinal pJNK expression and localization. The effects of ketamine on SNL-induced mechanical allodynia were confirmed by behavioral testing. Immunofluorescence histochemistry and Western blot were used to quantify the SNL-induced spinal pJNK expression after ketamine administration. Results The present study showed that SNL induced ipsilateral pJNK up-regulation in astrocytes but not microglia or neurons within the spinal dorsal horn. Intrathecal ketamine relieved SNL-induced mechanical allodynia without interfering with motor performance. Additionally, intrathecal administration of ketamine attenuated SNL-induced spinal astrocytic JNK activation in a dose-dependent manner, but not JNK protein expression. Conclusions The present results suggest that inhibition of JNK activation may be involved in the suppressive effects of ketamine on SNL-induced spinal astrocyte activation. Therefore, inhibition of spinal JNK activation may be involved in the analgesic effects of ketamine on SNL-induced neuropathic pain. PMID:21255465

  5. IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes protects from autoimmune mediated neurological disability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Hindinger

    Full Text Available Demyelination and axonal degeneration are determinants of progressive neurological disability in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS. Cells resident within the central nervous system (CNS are active participants in development, progression and subsequent control of autoimmune disease; however, their individual contributions are not well understood. Astrocytes, the most abundant CNS cell type, are highly sensitive to environmental cues and are implicated in both detrimental and protective outcomes during autoimmune demyelination. Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE was induced in transgenic mice expressing signaling defective dominant-negative interferon gamma (IFN-γ receptors on astrocytes to determine the influence of inflammation on astrocyte activity. Inhibition of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes did not influence disease incidence, onset, initial progression of symptoms, blood brain barrier (BBB integrity or the composition of the acute CNS inflammatory response. Nevertheless, increased demyelination at peak acute disease in the absence of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes correlated with sustained clinical symptoms. Following peak disease, diminished clinical remission, increased mortality and sustained astrocyte activation within the gray matter demonstrate a critical role of IFN-γ signaling to astrocytes in neuroprotection. Diminished disease remission was associated with escalating demyelination, axonal degeneration and sustained inflammation. The CNS infiltrating leukocyte composition was not altered; however, decreased IL-10 and IL-27 correlated with sustained disease. These data indicate that astrocytes play a critical role in limiting CNS autoimmune disease dependent upon a neuroprotective signaling pathway mediated by engagement of IFN-γ receptors.

  6. 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

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

    KAUST Repository

    Zeis, T.

    2015-04-01

    , MS NAGM astrocytes express inflammasome components and that astrocytes are capable to release Il-1β in-vitro. Altogether, our data suggests that immune signaling of immune- and/or central nervous system origin drives alterations in astrocytic ANLS and GGC gene regulation in the MS NAGM. Such a mechanism might underlie cortical brain dysfunctions frequently encountered in MS patients.

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

    KAUST Repository

    Sotelo-Hitschfeld, T.

    2015-03-11

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

  9. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geir Halnes

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

  11. 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

  12. Astrocyte lipid metabolism is critical for synapse development and function in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Deijk, Anne-Lieke F; Camargo, Nutabi; Timmerman, Jaap; Heistek, Tim; Brouwers, Jos F; Mogavero, Floriana; Mansvelder, Huibert D; Smit, August B; Verheijen, Mark H G

    2017-04-01

    The brain is considered to be autonomous in lipid synthesis with astrocytes producing lipids far more efficiently than neurons. Accordingly, it is generally assumed that astrocyte-derived lipids are taken up by neurons to support synapse formation and function. Initial confirmation of this assumption has been obtained in cell cultures, but whether astrocyte-derived lipids support synapses in vivo is not known. Here, we address this issue and determined the role of astrocyte lipid metabolism in hippocampal synapse formation and function in vivo. Hippocampal protein expression for the sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) and its target gene fatty acid synthase (Fasn) was found in astrocytes but not in neurons. Diminishing SREBP activity in astrocytes using mice in which the SREBP cleavage-activating protein (SCAP) was deleted from GFAP-expressing cells resulted in decreased cholesterol and phospholipid secretion by astrocytes. Interestingly, SCAP mutant mice showed more immature synapses, lower presynaptic protein SNAP-25 levels as well as reduced numbers of synaptic vesicles, indicating impaired development of the presynaptic terminal. Accordingly, hippocampal short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity were defective in mutant mice. These findings establish a critical role for astrocyte lipid metabolism in presynaptic terminal development and function in vivo. GLIA 2017;65:670-682. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Olukayode Olopade

    2015-05-01

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

  16. Synthetic polymeric substrates as potent pro-oxidant versus anti-oxidant regulators of cytoskeletal remodeling and cell apoptosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Hak-Joon; Chandra, Prafulla; Treiser, Matthew D; Liu, Er; Iovine, Carmine P; Moghe, Prabhas V; Kohn, Joachim

    2009-03-01

    The role of reactive oxygen species (ROS)-mediated cell signal transduction pathways emanating from engineered cell substrates remains unclear. To elucidate the role, polymers derived from the amino acid L-tyrosine were used as synthetic matrix substrates. Variations in their chemical properties were created by co-polymerizing hydrophobic L-tyrosine derivatives with uncharged hydrophilic poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG, Mw = 1,000 Da), and negatively charged desaminotyrosyl-tyrosine (DT). These substrates were characterized for their intrinsic ability to generate ROS, as well as their ability to elicit Saos-2 cell responses in terms of intracellular ROS production, actin remodeling, and apoptosis. PEG-containing substrates induced both exogenous and intracellular ROS production, whereas the charged substrates reduced production of both types, indicating a coupling of exogenous ROS generation and intracellular ROS production. Furthermore, PEG-mediated ROS induction caused nuclear translocation of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase and an increase in caspase-3 activity, confirming a link with apoptosis. PEG-rich pro-oxidant substrates caused cytoskeletal actin remodeling through beta-actin cleavage by caspase-3 into fractins. The fractins co-localized to the mitochondria and reduced the mitochondrial membrane potential. The remnant cytosolic beta-actin was polymerized and condensed, events consistent with apoptotic cell shrinkage. The cytoskeletal remodeling was integral to the further augmentation of intracellular ROS production. Conversely, the anti-oxidant DT-containing charged substrates suppressed the entire cascade of apoptotic progression. We demonstrate that ROS activity serves an important role in "outside-in" signaling for cells grown on substrates: the ROS activity couples exogenous stress, driven by substrate composition, to changes in intracellular signaling. This signaling causes cell apoptosis, which is mediated by actin remodeling.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1999-11-05

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

  18. Altered astrocyte glutamate transporter regulation of hypothalamic neurosecretory neurons in heart failure rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potapenko, Evgeniy S; Biancardi, Vinicia C; Zhou, Yiqiang; Stern, Javier E

    2012-08-01

    Neurohumoral activation, which includes augmented plasma levels of the neurohormone vasopressin (VP), is a common finding in heart failure (HF) that contributes to morbidity and mortality in this disease. While an increased activation of magnocellular neurosecretory cells (MNCs) and enhanced glutamate function in HF is well documented, the precise underlying mechanisms remain to be elucidated. Here, we combined electrophysiology and protein measurements to determine whether altered glial glutamate transporter function and/or expression occurs in the hypothalamic supraoptic nucleus (SON) during HF. Patch-clamp recordings obtained from MNCs in brain slices show that pharmacological blockade of astrocyte glutamate transporter 1 (GLT1) function [500 μM dihydrokainate (DHK)], resulted in a persistent N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-mediated inward current (tonic I(NMDA)) in sham rats, an effect that was significantly smaller in MNCs from HF rats. In addition, we found a diminished GLT1 protein content in plasma membrane (but not cytosolic) fractions of SON punches in HF rats. Conversely, astrocyte GLAST expression was significantly higher in the SON of HF rats, while nonselective blockade of glutamate transport activity (100 μM TBOA) evoked an enhanced tonic I(NMDA) activation in HF rats. Steady-state activation of NMDARs by extracellular glutamate levels was diminished during HF. Taken together, these results support a shift in the relative expression and function of two major glial glutamate transporters (from GLT1 to GLAST predominance) during HF. This shift may act as a compensatory mechanism to preserve an adequate basal glutamate uptake level in the face of an enhanced glutamatergic afferent activity in HF rats.

  19. Circadian control of p75 neurotrophin receptor leads to alternate activation of Nrf2 and c-Rel to reset energy metabolism in astrocytes via brain-derived neurotrophic factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishii, Tetsuro; Warabi, Eiji; Mann, Giovanni E

    2018-05-01

    Circadian clock genes regulate energy metabolism partly through neurotrophins in the body. The low affinity neurotrophin receptor p75 NTR is a clock component directly regulated by the transcriptional factor Clock:Bmal1 complex. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is expressed in the brain and plays a key role in coordinating metabolic interactions between neurons and astrocytes. BDNF transduces signals through TrkB and p75 NTR receptors. This review highlights a novel molecular mechanism by which BDNF via circadian control of p75 NTR leads to daily resetting of glucose and glycogen metabolism in brain astrocytes to accommodate their functional interaction with neurons. Astrocytes store glycogen as an energy reservoir to provide active neurons with the glycolytic metabolite lactate. Astrocytes predominantly express the truncated receptor TrkB.T1 which lacks an intracellular receptor tyrosine kinase domain. TrkB.T1 retains the capacity to regulate cell morphology through regulation of Rho GTPases. In contrast, p75 NTR mediates generation of the bioactive lipid ceramide upon stimulation with BDNF and inhibits PKA activation. As ceramide directly activates PKCζ, we discuss the importance of the TrkB.T1-p75 NTR -ceramide-PKCζ signaling axis in the stimulation of glycogen and lipid synthesis and activation of RhoA. Ceramide-PKCζ-casein kinase 2 signaling activates Nrf2 to support oxidative phosphorylation via upregulation of antioxidant enzymes. In the absence of p75 NTR , TrkB.T1 functionally interacts with adenosine A 2A R and dopamine D1R receptors to enhance cAMP-PKA signaling and activate Rac1 and NF-κB c-Rel, favoring glycogen hydrolysis, gluconeogenesis and aerobic glycolysis. Thus, diurnal changes in p75 NTR levels in astrocytes resets energy metabolism via BDNF to accommodate their metabolic interaction with neurons. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Detection of cytoskeletal proteins in small cell lung carcinoma

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hložánková, M.; Lukáš, Z.; Viklický, Vladimír

    1999-01-01

    Roč. 18, - (1999), s. 47-49 ISSN 0231-5882 Grant - others:MŠk1(CZ) OE10a/EU1450 Keywords : cytoskeletal proteins * small cell lung carcinoma Subject RIV: EI - Biotechnology ; Bionics Impact factor: 0.400, year: 1999

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shinotsuka, Takanori; Yasui, Masato; Nuriya, Mutsuo

    2014-01-01

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

  2. The beta1 subunit of the Na,K-ATPase pump interacts with megalencephalic leucoencephalopathy with subcortical cysts protein 1 (MLC1) in brain astrocytes: new insights into MLC pathogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brignone, Maria S; Lanciotti, Angela; Macioce, Pompeo; Macchia, Gianfranco; Gaetani, Matteo; Aloisi, Francesca; Petrucci, Tamara C; Ambrosini, Elena

    2011-01-01

    Megalencephalic leucoencephalopathy with subcortical cysts (MLC) is a rare congenital leucodystrophy caused by mutations in MLC1, a membrane protein of unknown function. MLC1 expression in astrocyte end-feet contacting blood vessels and meninges, along with brain swelling, fluid cysts and myelin vacuolation observed in MLC patients, suggests a possible role for MLC1 in the regulation of fluid and ion homeostasis and cellular volume changes. To identify MLC1 direct interactors and dissect the molecular pathways in which MLC1 is involved, we used NH2-MLC1 domain as a bait to screen a human brain library in a yeast two-hybrid assay. We identified the β1 subunit of the Na,K-ATPase pump as one of the interacting clones and confirmed it by pull-downs, co-fractionation assays and immunofluorescence stainings in human and rat astrocytes in vitro and in brain tissue. By performing ouabain-affinity chromatography on astrocyte and brain extracts, we isolated MLC1 and the whole Na,K-ATPase enzyme in a multiprotein complex that included Kir4.1, syntrophin and dystrobrevin. Because Na,K-ATPase is involved in intracellular osmotic control and volume regulation, we investigated the effect of hypo-osmotic stress on MLC1/Na,K-ATPase relationship in astrocytes. We found that hypo-osmotic conditions increased MLC1 membrane expression and favoured MLC1/Na,K-ATPase-β1 association. Moreover, hypo-osmosis induced astrocyte swelling and the reversible formation of endosome-derived vacuoles, where the two proteins co-localized. These data suggest that through its interaction with Na,K-ATPase, MLC1 is involved in the control of intracellular osmotic conditions and volume regulation in astrocytes, opening new perspectives for understanding the pathological mechanisms of MLC disease.

  3. 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...

  4. The signaling role for chloride in the bidirectional communication between neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Corinne S; Mongin, Alexander A

    2018-01-09

    It is well known that the electrical signaling in neuronal networks is modulated by chloride (Cl - ) fluxes via the inhibitory GABA A and glycine receptors. Here, we discuss the putative contribution of Cl - fluxes and intracellular Cl - to other forms of information transfer in the CNS, namely the bidirectional communication between neurons and astrocytes. The manuscript (i) summarizes the generic functions of Cl - in cellular physiology, (ii) recaps molecular identities and properties of Cl - transporters and channels in neurons and astrocytes, and (iii) analyzes emerging studies implicating Cl - in the modulation of neuroglial communication. The existing literature suggests that neurons can alter astrocytic Cl - levels in a number of ways; via (a) the release of neurotransmitters and activation of glial transporters that have intrinsic Cl - conductance, (b) the metabotropic receptor-driven changes in activity of the electroneutral cation-Cl - cotransporter NKCC1, and (c) the transient, activity-dependent changes in glial cell volume which open the volume-regulated Cl - /anion channel VRAC. Reciprocally, astrocytes are thought to alter neuronal [Cl - ] i through either (a) VRAC-mediated release of the inhibitory gliotransmitters, GABA and taurine, which open neuronal GABA A and glycine receptor/Cl - channels, or (b) the gliotransmitter-driven stimulation of NKCC1. The most important recent developments in this area are the identification of the molecular composition and functional heterogeneity of brain VRAC channels, and the discovery of a new cytosolic [Cl - ] sensor - the Wnk family protein kinases. With new work in the field, our understanding of the role of Cl - in information processing within the CNS is expected to be significantly updated. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Hemin inhibits NO production by IL-1β-stimulated human astrocytes through induction of heme oxygenase-1 and reduction of p38 MAPK activation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng Wen S

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Heme oxygenase (HO-1 has been shown to attenuate oxidative injury and reduce apoptosis. HO-1 can be induced by various stimuli released during cellular injury, such as heme. Deleterious free heme is degraded by HO-1 to carbon monoxide, iron and biliverdin, which have potent anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that upregulation of HO-1 would inhibit production of the free radical (NO by interlukin (IL-1β-activated human astrocytes. Methods To measure NO production, inducible NO synthase (iNOS, HO-1 expression and mitogen-activated protein (MAP kinase activation we used hemin as an HO-1 inducer and tin protoporphyrin (SnPP IX as an inhibitor of HO-1 activity in human astrocyte cultures prior to IL-1β exposure. Transfection of astrocyte cultures was performed using a pLEX expression vector carrying the human HO-1 sequence prior to IL-1β treatment. Supernatants of astrocyte cultures pretreated with inhibitors of p38 MAPK or MEK1/2 prior to IL-1β exposure were collected for NO assay. Results IL-1β treatment of astrocytes alone induced undetectable amounts of HO-1 protein by western blot. However, HO-1 mRNA expression was modestly up-regulated in response to IL-1β stimulation. Pretreatment with hemin alone substantially induced both HO-1 mRNA and protein expression, and HO-1 mRNA expression was further enhanced when hemin was combined with IL-1β treatment. In contrast, IL-1β-induced iNOS mRNA expression and NO production were markedly inhibited by hemin treatment. When pretreated with SnPP, the inhibitory effect of hemin on IL-1β-induced NO production and iNOS expression was reversed, suggesting the involvement of HO-1. IL-1β-induced p38 MAPK activation, which is known to be required for NO production, was also down-regulated by hemin. Conclusion These findings support the hypothesis that up-regulation of HO-1 in astrocytes is associated with down-regulation of i

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murakami, Shingo; Kurachi, Yoshihisa

    2016-03-01

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

  8. The neuroblast and angioblast chemotaxic factor SDF-1 (CXCL12 expression is briefly up regulated by reactive astrocytes in brain following neonatal hypoxic-ischemic injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walker Aisha L

    2005-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1 or CXCL12 is chemotaxic for CXCR4 expressing bone marrow-derived cells. It functions in brain embryonic development and in response to ischemic injury in helping guide neuroblast migration and vasculogenesis. In experimental adult stroke models SDF-1 is expressed perivascularly in the injured region up to 30 days after the injury, suggesting it could be a therapeutic target for tissue repair strategies. We hypothesized that SDF-1 would be expressed in similar temporal and spatial patterns following hypoxic-ischemic (HI injury in neonatal brain. Results Twenty-five 7-day-old C57BL/J mice underwent HI injury. SDF-1 expression was up regulated up to 7 days after the injury but not at the later time points. The chief sites of SDF-1 up regulation were astrocytes, their foot processes along blood vessels and endothelial cells. Conclusion The localization of SDF-1 along blood vessels in the HI injury zone suggests that these perivascular areas are where chemotaxic signaling for cellular recruitment originates and that reactive astrocytes are major mediators of this process. The associated endothelium is likely to be the site for vascular attachment and diapedesis of CXCR4 receptor expressing cells to enter the injured tissue. Here we show that, relative to adults, neonates have a significantly smaller window of opportunity for SDF-1 based vascular chemotaxic recruitment of bone marrow-derived cells. Therefore, without modification, following neonatal HI injury there is only a narrow period of time for endogenous SDF-1 mediated chemotaxis and recruitment of reparative cells, including exogenously administered stem/progenitor cells.

  9. Contributions of Glycogen to Astrocytic Energetics during Brain Activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A.; Cruz, Nancy F.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F

    2015-02-01

    Glycogen is the major store of glucose in brain and is mainly in astrocytes. Brain glycogen levels in unstimulated, carefully-handled rats are 10-12 μmol/g, and assuming that astrocytes account for half the brain mass, astrocytic glycogen content is twice as high. Glycogen turnover is slow under basal conditions, but it is mobilized during activation. There is no net increase in incorporation of label from glucose during activation, whereas label release from pre-labeled glycogen exceeds net glycogen consumption, which increases during stronger stimuli. Because glycogen level is restored by non-oxidative metabolism, astrocytes can influence the global ratio of ox