[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The proinflammatory cytokine interleukin-1 (IL-1) within the brain is critically involved in mediating the memory impairment induced by acute inflammatory challenges and psychological stress. However, the role of IL-1 in memory impairment and suppressed neurogenesis induced by chronic stress exposure has not been investigated before now. We report here that mice that were isolated for 4 weeks displayed a significant elevation in hippocampal IL-1beta levels concomitantly with body weight loss, specific impairment in hippocampal-dependent memory, and decreased hippocampal neurogenesis. To examine the causal role of IL-1 in these effects, we developed a novel approach for long-term delivery of IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) into the brain, using transplantation of neural precursor cells (NPCs), obtained from neonatal mice with transgenic overexpression of IL-1ra (IL-1raTG) under the glial fibrillary acidic protein promoter. Four weeks following intrahippocampal transplantation of IL-1raTG NPCs labeled with PKH-26, the transplanted cells were incorporated within the dentate gyrus and expressed mainly astrocytic markers. IL-1ra levels were markedly elevated in the hippocampus, but not in other brain regions, by 10 days and for at least 4 weeks post-transplantation. Transplantation of IL-1raTG NPCs completely rescued the chronic isolation-induced body weight loss, memory impairment, and suppressed hippocampal neurogenesis, compared with isolated mice transplanted with WT cells or sham operated. The transplantation had no effect in group-housed mice. These findings elucidate the role of IL-1 in the pathophysiology of chronic isolation and suggest that transplantation of IL-1raTG NPCs may provide a useful therapeutic procedure for IL-1-mediated memory disturbances in chronic inflammatory and neurological conditions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mechanism of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) penetration into the brain and its predilection to infect certain neuronal regions is unknown. In order to study HSV-1 neurotropism, an ex vivo system of mice organotypic brain slices was established and the tissue was infected with HSV-1 vectors. Neonate tissues showed restricted infection confined to leptomeningeal, periventricular and cortical brain regions. The hippocampus was the primary parenchymatous structure that was also infected. Infection was localized to early progenitor and ependymal cells. Increasing viral inoculum increased the intensity and enlarged the infected territory, but the distinctive pattern of infection was maintained and differed from that observed with adenovirus and Vaccinia virus. Neonate brain tissues were much more permissive for HSV-1 infection than adult mouse brain tissues. Taken together, these results indicate a complex interaction of HSV-1 with different brain-cell types and provide a useful vehicle to elucidate the mechanisms of viral neurotropism.
Journal of General Virology 11/2006; 87(Pt 10):2827-37. · 3.13 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Stem cell transplantation was introduced as a mean of cell replacement therapy, but the mechanism by which it confers clinical improvement in experimental models of neurological diseases is not clear. Here, we transplanted neural precursor cells (NPCs) into the ventricles of mice at day 6 after induction of chronic experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a model of multiple sclerosis (MS). Transplanted cells migrated into white matter tracts and attenuated the clinical course of disease. NPC transplantation down-regulated the inflammatory brain process at the acute phase of disease, as indicated by a reduction in the number of perivascular infiltrates and of brain CD3+ T cells, an increase in the number and proportion of regulatory T cells and a reduction in the expression of ICAM-1 and LFA-1 in the brain. Demyelination and acute axonal injury in this model are considered to result mainly from the acute inflammatory process and correlate well with the chronic neurological residua. In consequence to inhibition of brain inflammation, precursor cell transplantation attenuated the primary demyelinating process and reduced the acute axonal injury. As a result, the size of demyelinated areas and extent of chronic axonal pathology were reduced in the transplanted brains. We suggest that the beneficial effect of transplanted NPCs in chronic EAE is mediated, in part, by decreasing brain inflammation and reducing tissue injury.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A key issue for therapeutic neural stem cell transplantation in chronic diseases is the long-term survival of transplanted cells in the brain. The normal adult central nervous system does not support the survival of transplanted cells. Presumably, the limited availability of trophic factors maintains the survival of resident cells but is insufficient for supporting the survival of transplanted cells. Specifically, in multiple sclerosis, a chronic relapsing disease, it would be necessary to maintain long-term survival of transplanted cells through phases of relapses and remissions. It may be beneficial to transplant cells as early as possible, in a form that will keep their survival independent of tissue support and ready for immediate mobilization upon tissue demand during disease relapse. In the present study, we examined whether, in the form of neurospheres, multipotential neural precursor cells (NPCs) survive in a growth factor-poor environment while maintaining their potential to respond to environmental cues. We found that after removal of growth factors from the culture medium of neurospheres in vitro, NPC proliferation decreased significantly, but most cells survived for a prolonged time and maintained their stem cell characteristics. After re-exposure to growth factors, neurosphere cells resumed proliferation and could differentiate along neural lineages. Furthermore, neurospheres, but not single NPCs, that were transplanted into the brain ventricles of intact animals survived within the ventricles for at least a month and responded to induction of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis and brain inflammation by extensive migration into the brain white matter and differentiated into glial lineage cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several studies have suggested that an early increase in renal nitric oxide (NO) production or activity mediates pathophysiologic and morphologic changes in diabetic nephropathy. To evaluate the role of NO in developing diabetic kidney disease, we studied the NO system in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats for a period of 8 weeks.
Control rats, STZ-induced diabetic rats, and STZ-induced diabetic rats treated with insulin were monitored and sacrificed at 1, 2, and 8 weeks. Urinary cGMP was measured, and the levels and activity of NO synthase (NOS) isoforms in the kidney cortex were determined at specific times by immunoblotting and diaphorase staining.
Diabetic rats had increased kidney weight, urinary volume, glucose, sodium and potassium excretion, which was precluded by insulin treatment. Creatinine clearance was increased in the diabetic group and reversed by insulin treatment. Urinary cGMP decreased by 71, 93, and 92% at 1, 2, and 8 weeks of diabetes, respectively, compared with the control animals. Insulin treatment curtailed the urinary cGMP reduction in diabetic animals. Total NOS activity in the renal cortex was reduced by 65, 52, and 44% after 1, 2, and 8 weeks of diabetes, respectively, and returned to normal levels upon insulin treatment. NADPH diaphorase staining of renal cortical slices showed a 77, 63, and 70% decrease in neuronal NOS isoform activity in the macula densa after 1, 2, and 8 weeks of diabetes, respectively, compared with control non-diabetic animals. This reduction was normalized by insulin treatment. Endothelial NOS protein expression in the kidney cortex tended to increase after 1 week of diabetes and its level was elevated significantly after 2 and 8 weeks of diabetes. However, neuronal NOS protein expression in the kidney cortex was reduced by 52% in 2-week diabetic animals, but this reduction was normalized by insulin treatment.
The decreased renal NOS activity during the late phase of diabetes is partially associated with a decrease in neuronal NOS activity and protein expression in kidney macula densa.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) may potentially serve as a renewable source of cells for transplantation. In Parkinson's disease, hESC-derived dopaminergic (DA) neurons may replace the degenerated neurons in the brain. Here, we generated highly enriched cultures of neural progenitors from hESCs and grafted the progenitors into the striatum of Parkinsonian rats. The grafts survived for at least 12 weeks, the transplanted cells stopped proliferating, and teratomas were not observed. The grafted cells differentiated in vivo into DA neurons, though at a low prevalence similar to that observed following spontaneous differentiation in vitro. Transplanted rats exhibited a significant partial correction of D-amphetamine and apomorphine-induced rotational behavior, along with a significant improvement in stepping and placing non-pharmacological behavioral tests. While transplantation of uncommitted hESC-derived neural progenitors induced partial behavioral recovery, our data indicate that the host-lesioned striatum could not direct the transplanted neural progenitors to acquire a dopaminergic fate. Hence, induction of their differentiation toward a midbrain fate prior to transplantation is probably required for complete correction of behavioral deficit. Our observations encourage further developments for the potential use of hESCs in the treatment of Parkinson's disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Brain transplantation of neural precursor cells (NPCs) has been proposed to enhance CNS regeneration. As the pathogenesis of most acute CNS diseases involves an inflammatory component, we studied whether NPC transplantation affects brain inflammation. Newborn rat multipotential NPCs were transplanted intraventriculary into acute experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) rats, a model for disseminated brain inflammation. Cells migrated into inflamed white matter and differentiated into glial cells. NPC transplantation attenuated the clinical severity of EAE and the brain inflammation, indicated by reduction in perivascular infiltrates and decreased expression of ICAM-1 and LFA-1. NPCs inhibited basal proliferation and proliferative responses to Concavalin-A and to MOG peptide of EAE rat-derived lymphocytes in vitro. Purified astrocytes inhibited lymphocyte proliferation in vitro, but did not migrate into EAE brains in vivo, and did not reduce EAE severity or brain inflammation. Thus, transplanted NPCs attenuate acute EAE via an anti-inflammatory mechanism which depends on cell ability to migrate into inflamed brain tissue.
Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience 01/2004; 24(4):1074-82. · 3.84 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Stem cell transplantation is being explored as a new paradigm for the treatment of demyelinating diseases. Magnetically labeled multipotential neural precursor cells were transplanted into the ventricles of rats with acute experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) and high-resolution (microscopic) MR images were obtained ex vivo. Migration patterns of live cells into periventricular white matter structures could be easily visualized, with a good correlation of the corresponding histopathology. The present results confirm that MR cell tracking can be used to guide the development of successful transplantation protocols.
Magnetic Resonance in Medicine 08/2003; 50(1):201-5. · 3.27 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human embryonic stem (hES) cells are pluripotent cells derived from the inner cell mass of the early preimplantation embryo. An efficient strategy for stable genetic modification of hES cells may be highly valuable for manipulating the cells in vitro and may promote the study of hES cell biology, human embryogenesis, and the development of cell-based therapies. Here, we demonstrate that vectors derived from self-inactivating (SIN) human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) are efficient tools for stable genetic modification of hES cells. Transduction of hES cells by a modified vector derived from SIN HIV-1 and containing the woodchuck hepatitis regulatory element (WPRE) and the central polypurine tract (cPPT) sequence facilitated stable transgene expression during prolonged (38 weeks) undifferentiated proliferation in vitro. Southern blot analysis revealed that the viral vector had integrated into the host cells' DNA. Transgene expression was maintained throughout differentiation into progeny of all three germ layers both in vitro and in vivo in teratomas. Thus, the transduced hES cells retained the capability for self-renewal and their pluripotent potential. Genetic modification of hES cells by lentiviral vectors provides a powerful tool for basic and applied research in the area of human ES cells.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transplanted neural precursor cells remyelinate efficiently acutely demyelinated focal lesions. However, the clinical value of cell transplantation in a chronic, multifocal disease like multiple sclerosis will depend on the ability of transplanted cells to migrate to the multiple disease foci in the brain. Here, we expanded newborn rat neural precursor cells in spheres and transplanted them intracerebroventricularly or intrathecally in rats. The cells were labeled by the nuclear fluorescent dye Hoechst or by incubation with BrdU to enable their identification at 2 days and 2 weeks after transplantation, respectively. Spheres consisted of PSA-NCAM(+), nestin(+), NG2(-) undifferentiated precursor cells that differentiated in vitro into astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and neurons. Spheres that were transplanted into intact rats remained mostly in the ventricles or in the spinal subarachnoid space. Following transplantation at peak of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, cells migrated into the brain or spinal cord parenchyma, exclusively into inflamed white matter but not into adjacent gray matter regions. After 2 weeks, many transplanted cells had migrated into distant white matter tracts and acquired specific markers of the astroglial and oligodendroglial lineages. Thus, the inflammatory process may attract targeted migration of transplanted precursor cells into the brain parenchyma.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The derivation of neural progenitor cells from human embryonic stem (ES) cells is of value both in the study of early human neurogenesis and in the creation of an unlimited source of donor cells for neural transplantation therapy. Here we report the generation of enriched and expandable preparations of proliferating neural progenitors from human ES cells. The neural progenitors could differentiate in vitro into the three neural lineages--astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and mature neurons. When human neural progenitors were transplanted into the ventricles of newborn mouse brains, they incorporated in large numbers into the host brain parenchyma, demonstrated widespread distribution, and differentiated into progeny of the three neural lineages. The transplanted cells migrated along established brain migratory tracks in the host brain and differentiated in a region-specific manner, indicating that they could respond to local cues and participate in the processes of host brain development. Our observations set the stage for future developments that may allow the use of human ES cells for the treatment of neurological disorders.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Diabetic nephropathy (DN) is characterized by hyperfiltration and hypertrophy in experimental models of diabetes mellitus (DM). Several studies have demonstrated that the pathophysiologic and morphologic changes in DN are mediated by either an increase or decrease in renal nitric oxide (NO) production and/or activity. The goal of the present study was to determine the effects that the early diabetic state has on NO production in the kidney of rats with streptozotocin-induced DM.
Experimental DM was induced in rats with streptozotocin. Urinary NO production was measured, and levels and activity of the different NOS isoforms were determined by a combination of techniques, including immunoblotting, immunohistochemistry, diaphorase staining, and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction.
During the first week of DM, urinary NO metabolites (uNO2 + NO3) were reduced as compared with controls, which were unrelated to changes in serum levels of NO. Total NO synthase (NOS) activity was reduced in the renal cortex beginning at 30 hours after the induction of DM. NADPH diaphorase staining of renal cortical slices showed reduced NOS activity in the macula densa in diabetic animals. By immunohistochemical staining with antibodies to the different isoforms of NOS, it was found that protein levels of the neuroneal NOS (nNOS) isoform was diminished in the macula densa. No changes were found in the levels of endothelial NOS (eNOS) activity and protein in the renal cortex in the early diabetic state.
This study provides strong evidence that renal production of NO is reduced in early DM and that this reduction is associated with decreased levels of nNOS activity and protein in the macula densa.
Kidney International 09/2000; 58(2):740-7. · 8.52 Impact Factor