Heparan sulfate deficiency in autistic postmortem brain tissue from the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles
ABSTRACT Abnormal cellular growth and organization have been characterized in postmortem tissue from brains of autistic individuals, suggestive of pathology in a critical neurogenic niche, the subventricular zone (SVZ) of the brain lateral ventricles (LV). We examined cellular organization, cell proliferation, and constituents of the extracellular matrix such as N-sulfated heparan sulfate (HS) and laminin (LAM) in postmortem brain tissue from the LV-SVZ of young to elderly individuals with autism (n=4) and age-matched typically developing (TD) individuals (n=4) using immunofluorescence techniques. Strong and systematic reductions in HS immunofluorescence were observed in the LV-SVZ of the TD individuals with increasing age. For young through mature, but not elderly, autistic pair members, HS was reduced compared to their matched TDs. Cellular proliferation (Ki67+) was higher in the autistic individual of the youngest age-matched pair. These preliminary data suggesting that HS may be reduced in young to mature autistic individuals are in agreement with previous findings from the BTBR T+tf/J mouse, an animal model of autism; from mice with genetic modifications reducing HS; and with genetic variants in HS-related genes in autism. They suggest that aberrant extracellular matrix glycosaminoglycan function localized to the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricles may be a biomarker for autism, and potentially involved in the etiology of the disorder.
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ABSTRACT: The number of sports-related concussions has been steadily rising in recent years. Diminished brain resilience syndrome is a term coined by the lead author to describe a particular physiological state of nutrient functional deficiency and disrupted homeostatic mechanisms leading to increased susceptibility to previously considered innocuous concussion. We discuss how modern day environmental toxicant exposure, along with major changes in our food supply and lifestyle practices, profoundly reduce the bioavailability of neuro-critical nutrients such that the normal processes of homeostatic balance and resilience are no longer functional. Their diminished capacity triggers physiological and biochemical 'work around' processes that result in undesirable downstream consequences. Exposure to certain environmental chemicals, particularly glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide, Roundup(®), may disrupt the body's innate switching mechanism, which normally turns off the immune response to brain injury once danger has been removed. Deficiencies in serotonin, due to disruption of the shikimate pathway, may lead to impaired melatonin supply, which reduces the resiliency of the brain through reduced antioxidant capacity and alterations in the cerebrospinal fluid, reducing critical protective buffering mechanisms in impact trauma. Depletion of certain rare minerals, overuse of sunscreen and/or overprotection from sun exposure, as well as overindulgence in heavily processed, nutrient deficient foods, further compromise the brain's resilience. Modifications to lifestyle practices, if widely implemented, could significantly reduce this trend of neurological damage.Surgical Neurology International 01/2014; 5:97. DOI:10.4103/2152-7806.134731 · 1.18 Impact Factor
Article: Neural ECM and epilepsy.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Currently, there are about 20 antiepileptic drugs on market. Still, seizures in about 30% of patients with epilepsy are not adequately controlled, or the drugs cause quality-of-life-compromising adverse events. Importantly, there are no treatments to combat epileptogenesis, a process that leads to the development of epilepsy and its progression. To fill the gaps in the treatment of epilepsy, there is an urgent need for identification of novel treatment targets. Data emerging over the recent years have shown that different components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) contribute to many components of tissue reorganization during epileptogenesis and the ECM is also a major regulator of synaptic excitability. Here, we review the role of urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor interactome, matrix metalloproteinases, tenascin-R, and LGI1 in epileptogenesis and ictogenesis. Moreover, the role of the ECM in epilepsy-related comorbidities is reviewed. As there is active development of new imaging methods, we also summarize the data available on imaging of the ECM in epilepsy.Progress in brain research 01/2014; 214:229-62. DOI:10.1016/B978-0-444-63486-3.00011-6 · 5.10 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is defined by impaired social interaction and communication accompanied by stereotyped behaviors and restricted interests. Although ASD is common, its genetic and clinical features are highly heterogeneous. A number of recent breakthroughs have dramatically advanced our understanding of ASD from the standpoint of human genetics and neuropathology. These studies highlight the period of fetal development and the processes of chromatin structure, synaptic function, and neuron-glial signaling. The initial efforts to systematically integrate findings of multiple levels of genomic data and studies of mouse models have yielded new clues regarding ASD pathophysiology. This early work points to an emerging convergence of disease mechanisms in this complex and etiologically heterogeneous disorder.