Allan J Bieber

Mayo Clinic - Rochester, Rochester, Minnesota, United States

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Publications (36)181.24 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Systemic delivery of pharmacologic agents has led to many significant advances in the treatment of neurologic and psychiatric conditions. However, this approach has several limitations, including difficulty penetrating the blood-brain barrier and enzymatic degradation prior to reaching its intended target. Here, we describe the testing of a system allowing intraparenchymal (IPa) infusion of therapeutic agents directly to the appropriate anatomical targets, in a swine model. Five male pigs underwent 3.0 T magnetic resonance (MR) guided placement of an IPa catheter into the dorso-medial putamen, using a combined system of the Leksell Stereotactic Arc, a Mayo-developed MRI-compatible pig head frame, and a custom-designed Fred Haer Company (FHC) delivery system. Our results show hemi-lateral coverage of the pig putamen is achievable from a single infusion point and that the volume of the bolus detected in each animal is uniform (1544±420mm3). The IPa infusion system is designed to isolate the intracranial catheter from bodily-induced forces while delivering drugs and molecules into the brain tissue by convection-enhanced delivery, with minimal-to-no catheter track backflow. This study presents an innovative IPa drug delivery system, which includes a sophisticated catheter and implantable pump designed to deliver drugs and various molecules in a precise and controlled manner with limited backflow. It also demonstrates the efficacy of the delivery system, which has the potential to radically impact the treatment of a wide range of neurologic conditions. Lastly, the swine model used here has certain advantages for translation into clinical applications.
    Journal of neuroscience methods 01/2014; · 2.30 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Current strategies for optimizing deep brain stimulation (DBS) therapy involve multiple postoperative visits. During each visit, stimulation parameters are adjusted until desired therapeutic effects are achieved and adverse effects are minimized. However, the efficacy of these therapeutic parameters may decline with time due at least in part to disease progression, interactions between the host environment and the electrode, and lead migration. As such, development of closed-loop control systems that can respond to changing neurochemical environments, tailoring DBS therapy to individual patients, is paramount for improving the therapeutic efficacy of DBS. Evidence obtained using electrophysiology and imaging techniques in both animals and humans suggests that DBS works by modulating neural network activity. Recently, animal studies have shown that stimulation-evoked changes in neurotransmitter release that mirror normal physiology are associated with the therapeutic benefits of DBS. Therefore, to fully understand the neurophysiology of DBS and optimize its efficacy, it may be necessary to look beyond conventional electrophysiological analyses and characterize the neurochemical effects of therapeutic and non-therapeutic stimulation. By combining electrochemical monitoring and mathematical modeling techniques, we can potentially replace the trial-and-error process used in clinical programming with deterministic approaches that help attain optimal and stable neurochemical profiles. In this manuscript, we summarize the current understanding of electrophysiological and electrochemical processing for control of neuromodulation therapies. Additionally, we describe a proof-of-principle closed-loop controller that characterizes DBS-evoked dopamine changes to adjust stimulation parameters in a rodent model of DBS. The work described herein represents the initial steps toward achieving a "smart" neuroprosthetic system for treatment of neurologic and psychiatric disorders.
    Frontiers in neuroscience. 01/2014; 8:169.
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    ABSTRACT: Blood--brain barrier (BBB) disruption is an integral feature of numerous neurological disorders. However, there is a relative lack of knowledge regarding the underlying molecular mechanisms of immune-mediated BBB disruption. We have previously shown that CD8 T cells and perforin play critical roles in initiating altered permeability of the BBB in the peptide-induced fatal syndrome (PIFS) model developed by our laboratory. Additionally, despite having indistinguishable CD8 T cell responses, C57BL/6J (B6) mice are highly susceptible to PIFS, exhibiting functional motor deficits, increased astrocyte activation, and severe CNS vascular permeability, while 129S1/SvImJ (129S1) mice remain resistant. Therefore, to investigate the potential role of genetic factors, we performed a comprehensive genetic analysis of (B6 x 129S1) F2 progeny to define quantitative trait loci (QTL) linked to the phenotypic characteristics stated above that mediate CD8 T cell-initiated BBB disruption. Using single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers and a 95% confidence interval, we identified one QTL (PIFS1) on chromosome 12 linked to deficits in motor function (SNP markers rs6292954, rs13481303, rs3655057, and rs13481324, LOD score = 3.3). In addition we identified a second QTL (PIFS2) on chromosome 17 linked to changes in CNS vascular permeability (SNP markers rs6196216 and rs3672065, LOD score = 3.7). The QTL critical intervals discovered have allowed for compilation of a list of candidate genes implicated in regulating functional deficit and CNS vascular permeability. These genes encode for factors that may be potential targets for therapeutic approaches to treat disorders characterized by CD8 T cell-mediated BBB disruption.
    BMC Genomics 10/2013; 14(1):678. · 4.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Electrochemical techniques have long been utilized to investigate chemical changes in the neuronal microenvironment. Preclinical models have demonstrated the successful monitoring of changes in various neurotransmitter systems in vivo with high temporal and spatial resolution. The expansion of electrochemical recording to humans is a critical yet challenging goal to elucidate various aspects of human neurophysiology and to create future therapies. We have designed a novel device named the WINCS (Wireless Instantaneous Neurotransmitter Concentration Sensing) system that combines rapid scan voltammetry with wireless telemetry for highly resolved electrochemical recording and analysis. WINCS utilizes fast-scan cyclic voltammetry and fixed potential amperometry for in vivo recording and has demonstrated high temporal and spatial resolution in detecting changes in extracellular levels of a wide range of analytes including dopamine, adenosine, glutamate, serotonin, and histamine. Neurochemical monitoring in humans represents a new approach to understanding the neurophysiology of the central nervous system, the neurobiology of numerous diseases, and the underlying mechanism of various neurosurgical therapies. This article addresses the current understanding of electrochemistry, its application in humans, and future directions.
    Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery 02/2013; 91(3):141-147. · 1.46 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chemotherapy-induced neuropathy is the principle dose limiting factor requiring discontinuation of many chemotherapeutic agents, including cisplatin and oxaliplatin. About 30 to 40% of patients receiving chemotherapy develop pain and sensory changes. Given that poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibition has been shown to provide neuroprotection, the current study was developed to test whether the novel PARP inhibitor compound 4a (analog of ABT-888) would attenuate pain in cisplatin and oxaliplatin-induced neuropathy in mice. An established chemotherapy-induced painful neuropathy model of two weekly cycles of 10 intraperitoneal (i.p.) injections separated by 5 days rest was used to examine the therapeutic potential of the PARP inhibitor compound 4a. Behavioral testing using von Frey, paw radiant heat, cold plate, and exploratory behaviors were taken at baseline, and followed by testing at 3, 6, and 8 weeks from the beginning of drug treatment. Cisplatin-treated mice developed heat hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia while oxaliplatin-treated mice exhibited cold hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia. Co-administration of 50 mg/kg or 25 mg/kg compound 4a with platinum regimen, attenuated cisplatin-induced heat hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia in a dose dependent manner. Similarly, co-administration of 50 mg/kg compound 4a attenuated oxaliplatin-induced cold hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia. These data indicate that administration of a novel PARP inhibitor may have important applications as a therapeutic agent for human chemotherapy-induced painful neuropathy.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(1):e54161. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Restoration of movement following spinal cord injury (SCI) has been achieved using electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves and skeletal muscles. However, practical limitations such as the rapid onset of muscle fatigue hinder clinical application of these technologies. Recently, direct stimulation of alpha motor neurons has shown promise for evoking graded, controlled, and sustained muscle contractions in rodent and feline animal models while overcoming some of these limitations. However, small animal models are not optimal for the development of clinical spinal stimulation techniques for functional restoration of movement. Furthermore, variance in surgical procedure, targeting, and electrode implantation techniques can compromise therapeutic outcomes and impede comparison of results across studies. Herein, we present a protocol and large animal model that allow standardized development, testing, and optimization of novel clinical strategies for restoring motor function following spinal cord injury. We tested this protocol using both epidural and intraspinal stimulation in a porcine model of spinal cord injury, but the protocol is suitable for the development of other novel therapeutic strategies. This protocol will help characterize spinal circuits vital for selective activation of motor neuron pools. In turn, this will expedite the development and validation of high-precision therapeutic targeting strategies and stimulation technologies for optimal restoration of motor function in humans.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(12):e81443. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have discovered a role for natural autoantibodies in central nervous system repair, remyelination and axon protection. These natural human antibodies are of the immunoglobulin M (IgM) isotype, and they bind to the surface of neural cells. The epitope of the antibody includes sialic acid because treatment with sialidase disrupts the binding. A fully human recombinant form of one of these IgMs, rHIgM12, has the same properties as the serum-derived IgM. rHIgM12 enhanced polarized axonal outgrowth from primary neurons when presented as a substrate in vitro and improved motor functions in chronically Theiler's virus-infected SJL mice, a model of MS. rHIgM12 bound to neuronal surfaces and induced cholesterol and ganglioside (GM1) clustering, indicating that rHIgM12 functions through a mechanism of axonal membrane stabilization. Our work demonstrates that a natural human neuron-binding IgM can regulate membrane domain dynamics. This antibody has the potential to improve neurologic disease.
    Journal of Clinical Immunology 09/2012; · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We used genetic deletion of β2-microglobulin to study the influence of CD8(+) T cells on spinal cord demyelination, remyelination, axonal loss and brainstem N-acetyl aspartate levels during the acute and chronic phases of Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) infection. We used β2m(-/-) and β2m(+/+) B10.Q mice (of H-2(q) background) normally susceptible to TMEV-induced demyelination. Over the disease course, β2m(+/+) mice had increasing levels of demyelination and minimal late-onset remyelination. In contrast, β2m(-/-) mice had steady levels of demyelination from 45-390 dpi and remyelination was extensive and more complete. Early in the disease, brainstem NAA levels drop in both strains, but accordingly with remyelination and axonal preservation, NAA recover in β2m(-/-) mice despite equivalent brainstem pathology. At 270 dpi, β2m(+/+) mice had significantly fewer spinal cord axons than β2m(-/-) mice (up to 28% less). In addition, β2m(+/+) mice lost axons of all calibers, whereas β2m(-/-) mice had a modest loss of only medium- and large-caliber axons. This study further supports the hypothesis that CD8(+) T cells are involved in demyelination, and axonal loss following Theiler's virus-induced demyelination.
    Brain Pathology 02/2012; 22(5):698-708. · 4.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Mouse and human IgMs support neurite extension from primary cerebellar granule neurons. In this study using primary hippocampal and cortical neurons, we demonstrate that a recombinant human IgM, rHIgM12, promotes axon outgrowth by coupling membrane domains (lipid rafts) to microtubules. rHIgM12 binds to the surface of neuron and induces clustering of cholesterol and ganglioside GM1. After cell binding and membrane fractionation, rHIgM12 gets segregated into two pools, one associated with lipid raft fractions and the other with the detergent-insoluble cytoskeleton-containing pellet. Membrane-bound rHIgM12 co-localized with microtubules and co-immuno precipitated with β3-tubulin. rHIgM12-membrane interaction also enhanced the tyrosination of α-tubulin indicating a stabilization of new neurites. When presented as a substrate, rHIgM12 induced axon outgrowth from primary neurons. We now demonstrate that a recombinant human mAb can induce signals in neurons that regulate membrane lipids and microtubule dynamics required for axon extension. We propose that the pentameric structure of the IgM is critical to cross-link membrane lipids and proteins resulting in signaling cascades.
    Journal of Neurochemistry 08/2011; 119(1):100-12. · 3.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Platinum-based compounds are widely used and effective chemotherapeutic agents; however, sensory peripheral neuropathy is a dose-limiting and long term side effect for 20-30% of patients. A critical question is whether the mechanisms of cell death underlying clinical efficacy can be separated from the effects on neurons in order to develop strategies that prevent platinum-induced neuropathy. In rodent dorsal root ganglion neurons (DRG), cisplatin has been shown to bind and damage neuronal DNA, inducing apoptosis; however genetic manipulation in order to study mechanisms of this phenomenon in the rodent model system is costly and time-consuming. Drosophila melanogaster are commonly used to study neurological disorders, have DNA damage-apoptosis mechanisms homologous to mammalian systems, and have readily-available, inexpensive tools for rapid genetic manipulation. We therefore sought to develop adult Drosophila as a new model to study cisplatin-induced neurotoxicity. Adult Drosophila were exposed to 10, 25, 50, 100, 200 and 400 μg/ml cisplatin for 3 days and observed for fly survival and geotactic climbing behavior, cisplatin-DNA binding and cellular apoptosis. On day 3, 50 μg/ml cisplatin reduced the number of flies able to climb above 2 cm to 43% while fly survival was maintained at 92%. 100% lethality was observed at 400 μg/ml cisplatin. Whole fly platinum-genomic DNA adducts were measured and found to be comparable to adduct levels previously measured in rat DRG neurons. Brain, ovaries, kidney and heart harvested from cisplatin treated flies were stained for active caspase 3. Apoptosis was found in ovaries and brain but not in heart and kidney. Brain apoptosis was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. Expression of the anti-apoptotic baculoviral protein, p35, in neurons using the GAL4-UAS system prevented cisplatin-induced apoptosis in the brain and restored climbing behavior. In conclusion, cisplatin-induced behavioral and apoptotic changes in Drosophila resemble those seen in mammals. Furthermore, the use of lethality and climbing assays combined with powerful gene manipulation, make Drosophila a suitable model to study mechanisms of cisplatin neurotoxicity.
    Neurobiology of Disease 08/2011; 43(2):330-7. · 5.62 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Repair of the central nervous system (CNS) constitutes an integral part of treating neurological disease and plays a crucial role in restoring CNS architecture and function. Distinct strategies have been developed to reconstruct the damaged neural tissue, with many tested preclinically in animal models. We review cell replacement-based repair strategies. By taking spinal cord injury, cerebral ischaemia and degenerative CNS disorders as examples for CNS repair, we discuss progress and potential problems in utilizing embryonic stem cells and adult neural/non-neural stem cells to repair cell loss in the CNS. Nevertheless, CNS repair is not simply a matter of cell transplantation. The major challenge is to induce regenerating neural cells to integrate into the neural network and compensate for damaged neural function. The neural cells confront an environment very different from that of the developmental stage in which these cells differentiate to form interwoven networks. During the repair process, one of the challenges is neurodegeneration, which can develop from interrupted innervations to/from the targets, chronic inflammation, ischaemia, aging or idiopathic neural toxicity. Neurodegeneration, which occurs on the basis of a characteristic vascular and neural web, usually presents as a chronically progressive process with unknown aetiology. Currently, there is no effective treatment to stop or slow down neurodegeneration. Pathological changes from patients with Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis indicate a broken homeostasis in the CNS. We discuss how the blood-brain barrier and neural networks are formed to maintain CNS homeostasis and their contribution to neurodegeneration in diseased conditions. Another challenge is that some inhibitors produced by CNS injury do not facilitate the regenerating neural cells to incorporate into a pre-existing network. We review glial responses to CNS injury. Of note, the reactive astrocytes not only encompass the lesions/pathogens but may also form glial scars to impede regenerating axons from traversing the lesions. In addition, myelin debris can prevent axon growth. Myelination enables saltatory transduction of electrical impulses along axonal calibers and actually provides trophic support to stabilize the axons. Therefore, repair strategies should be designed to promote axonal growth, myelination and modulate astrocytic responses. Finally, we discuss recent progress in developing human monoclonal IgMs that regulate CNS homeostasis and promote neural regeneration.
    CNS Drugs 07/2011; 25(7):555-73. · 4.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Immunoglobulins (Ig) or antibodies are heavy plasma proteins, with sugar chains added to amino acid residues by N-linked glycosylation and occasionally by O-linked glycosylation. The versatility of antibodies is demonstrated by the various functions that they mediate such as neutralization, agglutination, fixation with activation of complement and activation of effector cells. In addition to this plethora of functions, some antibodies express enzymatic activity. Antibodies endowed with enzymatic properties have been described in human autoimmune manifestations in a variety of disorders such as autoimmune thyroiditis, systemic erythematosus (SLE), scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), multiple sclerosis (MS) and acquired hemophilia (AH). Antibodies isolated from these conditions were able to specifically hydrolyze thyroglobulin, DNA, RNA, myelin basic protein (MBP), and factor VIII (FVIII) or factor IX (FIX), respectively. The therapeutic relevance of these findings is discussed.
    Journal of Autoimmunity 05/2011; 37(2):144-50. · 8.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a complex disease with an unknown etiology and no effective cure, despite decades of extensive research that led to the development of several partially effective treatments. Researchers have only limited access to early and immunologically active MS tissue samples, and the modification of experimental circumstances is much more restricted in human studies compared to studies in animal models. For these reasons, animal models are needed to clarify the underlying immune-pathological mechanisms and test novel therapeutic and reparative approaches. It is not possible for a single mouse model to capture and adequately incorporate all clinical, radiological, pathological and genetic features of MS. The three most commonly studied major categories of animal models of MS include: (1) the purely autoimmune experimental autoimmune/allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE); (2) the virally induced chronic demyelinating disease models, with the main model of Theiler's Murine Encephalomyelitis Virus (TMEV) infection and (3) toxin-induced models of demyelination, including the cuprizone model and focal demyelination induced by lyso-phosphatidyl choline (lyso-lecithine). EAE has been enormously helpful over the past several decades in our overall understanding of CNS inflammation, immune surveillance and immune-mediated tissue injury. Furthermore, EAE has directly led to the development of three approved medications for treatment in multiple sclerosis, glatiramer acetate, mitoxantrone and natalizumab. On the other hand, numerous therapeutical approaches that showed promising results in EAE turned out to be either ineffective or in some cases harmful in MS. The TMEV model features a chronic-progressive disease course that lasts for the entire lifespan in susceptible mice. Several features of MS, including the role and significance of axonal injury and repair, the partial independence of disability from demyelination, epitope spread from viral to myelin epitopes, the significance of remyelination has all been demonstrated in this model. TMEV based MS models also feature several MRI findings of the human disease. Toxin-induced demyelination models has been mainly used to study focal demyelination and remyelination. None of the three main animal models described in this review can be considered superior; rather, they are best viewed as complementary to one another. Despite their limitations, the rational utilization and application of these models to address specific research questions will remain one of the most useful tools in studies of human demyelinating diseases.
    Pathophysiology 02/2011; 18(1):21-9.
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    ABSTRACT: We used transgenic expression of capsid antigens to Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) to study the influence of VP1, VP2 or VP2(121-130) to either protection or pathogenesis to chronic spinal cord demyelination, axonal loss and functional deficits during the acute and chronic phases of infection. We used both mice that are normally susceptible (FVB) and mice normally resistant (FVB.D(b) ) to demyelination. Transgenic expression of VP2(121-130) epitope in resistant FVB.D(b) mice caused spinal cord pathology and virus persistence because the VP2(121-130) epitope is the dominant peptide recognized by D(b) , which is critical for virus clearance. In contrast, all three FVB TMEV transgenic mice showed more demyelination, inflammation and axonal loss as compared with wild-type FVB mice, even though virus load was not increased. Motor function measured by rotarod showed weak correlation with total number of midthoracic axons, but a strong correlation with large-caliber axons (>10µm(2) ). This study supports the hypothesis that expression of viral capsid proteins as self influences the extent of axonal pathology following Theiler's virus-induced demyelination. The findings provide insight into the role of axonal injury in the development of functional deficits that may have relevance to human demyelinating disease.
    Brain Pathology 01/2011; 21(5):501-15. · 4.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis (MS) remains elusive. Recent reports advocate greater involvement of B cells and immunoglobulins in the initiation and propagation of MS lesions at different stages of their ontogeny. The key role of B cells and immunoglobulins in pathogenesis was initially identified by studies in which patients whose fulminant attacks of demyelination did not respond to steroids experienced remarkable functional improvement following plasma exchange. The positive response to Rituximab in Phase II clinical trials of relapsing-remitting MS confirms the role of B cells. The critical question is how B cells contribute to MS. In this paper, we discuss both the deleterious and the beneficial roles of B cells and immunoglobulins in MS lesions. We provide alternative hypotheses to explain both damaging and protective antibody responses.
    Neurology research international. 01/2011; 2011:780712.
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    ABSTRACT: Cisplatin is primarily used for treatment of ovarian and testicular cancer. Oxaliplatin is the only effective treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer. Both are known to cause dose related, cumulative toxic effects on the peripheral nervous system and thirty to forty percent of cancer patients receiving these agents experience painful peripheral neuropathy. The mechanisms underlying painful platinum-induced neuropathy remain poorly understood. Previous studies have demonstrated important roles for TRPV1, TRPM8, and TRPA1 in inflammation and nerve injury induced pain. In this study, using real-time, reverse transcriptase, polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), we analyzed the expression of TRPV1, TRPM8, and TRPA1 induced by cisplatin or oxaliplatin in vitro and in vivo. For in vitro studies, cultured E15 rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons were treated for up to 48 hours with cisplatin or oxaliplatin. For in vivo studies, trigeminal ganglia (TG) were isolated from mice treated with platinum drugs for three weeks. We show that cisplatin and oxaliplatin-treated DRG neurons had significantly increased in TRPV1, TRPA1, and TRPM8 mRNA expression. TG neurons from cisplatin treated mice had significant increases in TRPV1 and TRPA1 mRNA expression while oxaliplatin strongly induced only TRPA1. Furthermore, compared to the cisplatin-treated wild-type mice, cisplatin-treated TRPV1-null mice developed mechanical allodynia but did not exhibit enhancement of noxious heat- evoked pain responses. Immunohistochemistry studies showed that cisplatin-treated mice had no change in the proportion of the TRPV1 immunopositive TG neurons. These results indicate that TRPV1 and TRPA1 could contribute to the development of thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia following cisplatin-induced painful neuropathy but that TRPV1 has a crucial role in cisplatin-induced thermal hyperalgesia in vivo.
    Molecular Pain 03/2010; 6:15. · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The potential for endogenous remyelination and axonal protection can be an important factor in determining disease outcome in demyelinating diseases like multiple sclerosis. In many multiple sclerosis (MS) patients CNS repair fails or is incomplete whereas in others the disease is accompanied by extensive repair of demyelinated lesions. We have described significant differences in the ability of two strains of mice to repair CNS damage following Theiler's virus-induced demyelination: FVB/NJ (FVB) mice repair damaged myelin spontaneously and completely, whereas B10.D1-H2(q)/SgJ (B10.Q) mice are deficient in the repair process. A QTL analysis was performed to identify genetic loci that differentially regulate CNS repair following chronic demyelination in these strains and two QTL were detected: one on chromosome 3 with a LOD score of 9.3 and a second on chromosome 9 with a LOD score of 14.0. The mouse genes for epidermal growth factor (EGF) and Tyk2 are encoded within the QTL on chromosomes 3 and 9, respectively. Sequence polymorphisms between the FVB and B10.Q strains at both the EGF and Tyk2 loci define functional variations consistent with roles for these genes in regulating myelin repair. EGF is a key regulator of cell growth and development and we show a sevenfold increase in EGF expression in FVB compared to B10.Q mice. Tyk2 is a Janus kinase that plays a central role in controlling the T(H)1 immune response and we show that attenuation of Tyk2 function correlates with enhanced CNS repair.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 01/2010; 107(2):792-7. · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The RNA-dependent RNA polymerase 3D(pol) is required for the elongation of positive- and negative-stranded picornavirus RNA. During the course of investigating the effect of the transgenic expression of viral genes on the host immune response, we evaluated the viral load present in the host after infection. To our surprise, we found that 3D transgenic expression in genetically susceptible FVB mice led to substantially lower viral loads after infection with Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV). As a result, spinal cord damage caused by chronic viral infection in the central nervous system was reduced in FVB mice that expressed 3D. This led to the preservation of large-diameter axons and motor function in these mice. The 3D transgene also lowered early viral loads when expressed in FVB-D(b) mice resistant to persistent TMEV infection. The protective effect of 3D transgenic expression was not altered in FVB-Rag(-/-).3D mice that are deficient in T and B cells, thus ruling out a mechanism by which the overexpression of 3D enhanced the adaptive immune clearance of the virus. Understanding how endogenously overexpressed 3D polymerase inhibits viral replication may lead to new strategies for targeting therapies to all picornaviruses.
    Journal of Virology 09/2009; 83(23):12279-89. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Measuring in vivo spinal cord injury and repair remains elusive. Using magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) we examined brainstem N-acetyl-aspartate (NAA) as a surrogate for spinal cord injury in two mouse strains with different reparative phenotypes following virus-induced demyelination. Swiss Jim Lambert (SJL) and Friend Virus B (FVB) mice progressively demyelinate with axonal loss. FVB mice demyelinate similarly but eventually remyelinate coincident with functional recovery. Brainstem NAA levels drop in both but recover in FVB mice. Chronically infected SJL mice lost 30.5% of spinal cord axons compared to FVB mice (7.3%). In remyelination-enhancing or axon-preserving clinical trials, brainstem MRS may be a viable endpoint to represent overall spinal cord dysfunction.
    Annals of Neurology 05/2009; 66(4):559-64. · 11.19 Impact Factor
  • A J Bieber
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    ABSTRACT: Myelin repair (remyelination) following the demyelination of central nervous system (CNS) axons in diseases such as multiple sclerosis plays a critical role in determining the level of accompanying neurologic disability. While remyelination can be quite robust, in multiple sclerosis it often fails. Understanding and stimulating the remyelination process are therefore important goals in MS research. Remyelination is a complex cellular process that involves an intimate interplay between the myelin-producing cells of the CNS (oligodendrocytes), the axons to be myelinated, as well as CNS-infiltrating immune cells. Genetic analysis can be a powerful tool for the functional analysis of complex cellular processes and has recently been applied to the problem of remyelination failure during disease. This chapter reviews the recent use of genetic approaches for the study of CNS remyelination in mouse models of demyelinating disease.
    Current topics in microbiology and immunology 02/2008; 318:177-92. · 4.86 Impact Factor