Reinnervation of the tibialis anterior following sciatic nerve crush injury: a confocal microscopic study in transgenic mice.
ABSTRACT Transgenic mice whose axons and Schwann cells express fluorescent chromophores enable new imaging techniques and augment concepts in developmental neurobiology. The utility of these tools in the study of traumatic nerve injury depends on employing nerve models that are amenable to microsurgical manipulation and gauging functional recovery. Motor recovery from sciatic nerve crush injury is studied here by evaluating motor endplates of the tibialis anterior muscle, which is innervated by the deep peroneal branch of the sciatic nerve. Following sciatic nerve crush, the deep surface of the tibialis anterior muscle is examined using whole mount confocal microscopy, and reinnervation is characterized by imaging fluorescent axons or Schwann cells (SCs). One week following sciatic crush injury, 100% of motor endplates are denervated with partial reinnervation at 2 weeks, hyperinnervation at 3 and 4 weeks, and restoration of a 1:1 axon to motor endplate relationship 6 weeks after injury. Walking track analysis reveals progressive recovery of sciatic nerve function by 6 weeks. SCs reveal reduced S100 expression within 2 weeks of denervation, correlating with regression to a more immature phenotype. Reinnervation of SCs restores S100 expression and a fully differentiated phenotype. Following denervation, there is altered morphology of circumscribed terminal Schwann cells demonstrating extensive process formation between adjacent motor endplates. The thin, uniformly innervated tibialis anterior muscle is well suited for studying motor reinnervation following sciatic nerve injury. Confocal microscopy may be performed coincident with other techniques of assessing nerve regeneration and functional recovery.
Article: Fluorescence microscopy.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Although fluorescence microscopy permeates all of cell and molecular biology, most biologists have little experience with the underlying photophysical phenomena. Understanding the principles underlying fluorescence microscopy is useful when attempting to solve imaging problems. Additionally, fluorescence microscopy is in a state of rapid evolution, with new techniques, probes and equipment appearing almost daily. Familiarity with fluorescence is a prerequisite for taking advantage of many of these developments. This review attempts to provide a framework for understanding excitation of and emission by fluorophores, the way fluorescence microscopes work, and some of the ways fluorescence can be optimized.Nature Methods 01/2006; 2(12):910-9. · 19.28 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Axonal degeneration is an active program of self-destruction that is observed in many physiological and pathological settings. In Wallerian degeneration slow (wlds) mice, Wallerian degeneration in response to axonal injury is delayed because of a mutation that results in overexpression of a chimeric protein (Wlds) composed of the ubiquitin assembly protein Ufd2a and the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) biosynthetic enzyme Nmnat1. We demonstrate that increased Nmnat activity is responsible for the axon-sparing activity of the Wlds protein. Furthermore, we demonstrate that SIRT1, a mammalian ortholog of Sir2, is the downstream effector of increased Nmnat activity that leads to axonal protection. These findings suggest that novel therapeutic strategies directed at increasing the supply of NAD and/or Sir2 activation may be effective for treatment of diseases characterized by axonopathy and neurodegeneration.Science 09/2004; 305(5686):1010-3. · 31.20 Impact Factor
Article: Differential regulation of mRNAs for GDNF and its receptors Ret and GDNFR alpha after sciatic nerve lesion in the mouse.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), first characterized for its effect on dopamine uptake in central dopaminergic neurons, appears to be a powerful neurotrophic factor for motor neurons. GDNF has recently been shown to signal through a multisubunit receptor. This receptor is composed of a ligand-binding subunit, called GDNF receptor alpha (GDNFR alpha), and a signalling tyrosine kinase subunit, Ret. To gain further insight into GDNF function, we investigated the expression of GDNF and its receptors after nerve lesion in adult mice. Analysis of expression in muscle, nerve and spinal cord by RNase protection assay and in situ hydridization revealed that, in adult non-lesioned mice, GDNF mRNA was expressed in the nerve and GDNFR alpha mRNA in the nerve and the spinal cord, while the expression of Ret was restricted to spinal cord motor neurons. After a sciatic nerve crush a rapid increase in GDNF mRNA was observed in the distal part of the nerve and a delayed elevation in the muscle, while GDNFR alpha mRNA was up-regulated in the distal part of the sciatic nerve but not in proximal nerve or spinal cord. The lesion also induced a rapid increase in Ret mRNA expression, but the increase was observed only in spinal cord motor neurons and in dorsal root ganglion neurons. A pattern of expression of GDNF and its receptors similar to that seen after lesion in the adult was detected during embryonic development. Administration of GDNF enhanced sciatic nerve regeneration measured by the nerve pinch test. Taken together, these results suggest that GDNF has an important role during regeneration after nerve damage in the adult.European Journal of Neuroscience 08/1997; 9(7):1450-60. · 3.63 Impact Factor