Andrea Abdipranoto

Garvan Institute of Medical Research, Darlinghurst, New South Wales, Australia

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Publications (6)37.23 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Specific brain circuits have been classically linked to dedicated functions. However, compensation following brain damage suggests that these circuits are capable of dynamic adaptation. Such compensation is exemplified by Pavlovian fear conditioning following damage to the dorsal hippocampus (DH). Although the DH normally underlies contextual fear and fear renewal after extinction, both can be learned in the absence of the DH, although the mechanisms and nature of this compensation are currently unknown. Here, we report that recruitment of alternate structures, specifically the infralimbic and prelimbic prefrontal cortices, is required for compensation following damage to the hippocampus. Disconnection of these cortices in DH-compromised animals and immediate early gene induction profiles for amygdala-projecting prefrontal cells revealed that communication and dynamic rebalancing within this prefrontal microcircuit is critical. Additionally, the infralimbic cortex normally plays a role in limiting generalization of contextual fear. These discoveries reveal that plasticity through recruitment of alternate circuits allows the brain to compensate following damage, offering promise for targeted treatment of memory disorders.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 05/2013; · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent human trials of treatments for Alzheimer's disease (AD) have been largely unsuccessful, raising the idea that treatment may need to be started earlier in the disease, well before cognitive symptoms appear. An early marker of AD pathology is therefore needed and it is debated as to whether amyloid-βAβ? plaque load may serve this purpose. We investigated this in the hAPP-J20 AD mouse model by studying disease pathology at 6, 12, 24 and 36 weeks. Using robust stereological methods, we found there is no neuron loss in the hippocampal CA3 region at any age. However loss of neurons from the hippocampal CA1 region begins as early as 12 weeks of age. The extent of neuron loss increases with age, correlating with the number of activated microglia. Gliosis was also present, but plateaued during aging. Increased hyperactivity and spatial memory deficits occurred at 16 and 24 weeks. Meanwhile, the appearance of plaques and oligomeric Aβ were essentially the last pathological changes, with significant changes only observed at 36 weeks of age. This is surprising given that the hAPP-J20 AD mouse model is engineered to over-expresses Aβ. Our data raises the possibility that plaque load may not be the best marker for early AD and suggests that activated microglia could be a valuable marker to track disease progression.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(4):e59586. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A central concept in the field of learning and memory is that NMDARs are essential for synaptic plasticity and memory formation. Surprisingly then, multiple studies have found that behavioral experience can reduce or eliminate the contribution of these receptors to learning. The cellular mechanisms that mediate learning in the absence of NMDAR activation are currently unknown. To address this issue, we examined the contribution of Ca(2+)-permeable AMPARs to learning and plasticity in the hippocampus. Mutant mice were engineered with a conditional genetic deletion of GluR2 in the CA1 region of the hippocampus (GluR2-cKO mice). Electrophysiology experiments in these animals revealed a novel form of long-term potentiation (LTP) that was independent of NMDARs and mediated by GluR2-lacking Ca(2+)-permeable AMPARs. Behavioral analyses found that GluR2-cKO mice were impaired on multiple hippocampus-dependent learning tasks that required NMDAR activation. This suggests that AMPAR-mediated LTP interferes with NMDAR-dependent plasticity. In contrast, NMDAR-independent learning was normal in knockout mice and required the activation of Ca(2+)-permeable AMPARs. These results suggest that GluR2-lacking AMPARs play a functional and previously unidentified role in learning; they appear to mediate changes in synaptic strength that occur after plasticity has been established by NMDARs.
    PLoS ONE 01/2010; 5(9). · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although drugs used to treat several neurological diseases are presumed to target synapses that secrete dopamine (DA), relatively little is known about synaptic vesicle (SV) release mechanisms at single DA synapses. We found that the relative probability of release (Pr) varied between individual DA synapses. Furthermore, DA terminals generally exhibited lower Pr than glutamatergic hippocampal (Hpc) terminals, suggesting that DA release is less reliable than the release of glutamate. Our mathematical model of fluorescence loss shows that Pr is regulated by two independent and heterogeneous elements. First, the size of the recycling SV pool regulates Pr. Second, Pr is also independently regulated by additional factors, which are reflected in the time constant of FM 1-43 destaining, tau. We found that the observed difference in Pr between Hpc and DA neurons results because the recycling SV pool is smaller in DA neurons than in Hpc neurons. However, tau does not vary between these two neuron populations. We also identified a population of functional nonsynaptic boutons in DA axons, which are not associated with a postsynaptic element and which are not functionally different from boutons that formed conventional synapses. Our work provides a new approach to the study of SV exocytosis in DA neurons and shows that synaptic terminals of DA neurons are functionally heterogeneous and differ from excitatory terminals in terms of Pr.
    Journal of Neuroscience 11/2009; 29(46):14670-80. · 6.91 Impact Factor
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    Andrea Abdipranoto, Sara Wu, Sandy Stayte, Bryce Vissel
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    ABSTRACT: Neurodegenerative diseases are characterised by a net loss of neurons from specific regions of the central nervous system (CNS). Until recently, research has focused on identifying mechanisms that lead to neurodegeneration, while therapeutic approaches have been primarily targeted to prevent neuronal loss. This has had limited success and marketed pharmaceuticals do not have dramatic benefits. Here we suggest that the future success of therapeutic strategies will depend on consideration and understanding of the role of neurogenesis in the adult CNS. We summarize evidence suggesting that neurogenesis is impaired in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, while it is enhanced in stroke. We review studies where stimulation of neurogenesis is associated with restored function in animal models of these diseases, suggesting that neurogenesis is functionally important. We show that many current therapeutics, developed to block degeneration or to provide symptomatic relief, serendipitously stimulate neurogenesis or, at least, do not interfere with it. Importantly, many receptors, ion channels and ligand-gated channels implicated in neurodegeneration, such as NMDA, AMPA, GABA and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, also play an important role in neurogenesis and regeneration. Therefore, new therapeutics targeted to block degeneration by antagonizing these channels may have limited benefit as they may also block regeneration. Our conclusion is that future drug development must consider neurogenesis. It appears unlikely that drugs being developed to treat neurodegenerative diseases will be beneficial if they impair neurogenesis. And, most tantalizing, therapeutic approaches that stimulate neurogenesis might stimulate repair and even recovery from these devastating diseases.
    CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets (Formerly Current Drug Targets - CNS & Neurological Disorders) 05/2008; 7(2):187-210. · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human mammary epithelial cells (HMEC) grown under standard cell culture conditions enter a growth phase referred to as selection, but a subpopulation is able to escape from arrest and continue to proliferate. These cells, called post-selection or variant HMECs, may be derived from progenitor cells found in normal mammary epithelium that subsequently acquire premalignant lesions, including p16(INK4A) promoter hypermethylation. Epigenetic silencing of tumor suppressor genes through DNA methylation and histone modification is an early event in tumorigenesis. A major challenge is to find genes or gene pathways that are commonly silenced to provide early epigenetic diagnostic and therapeutic cancer targets. To identify very early epigenetic events that occur in breast cancer, we used microarrays to screen for gene pathways that were suppressed in post-selection HMECs but reactivated after treatment with the demethylation agent 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine. We found that several members of the transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) signaling pathway were consistently down-regulated in the post-selection HMEC populations, and this was associated with a marked decrease in Smad4 nuclear staining. Gene suppression was not associated with DNA methylation but with chromatin remodeling, involving a decrease in histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation and an increase in histone H3 lysine 9 dimethylation and deacetylation. These results show for the first time that TGF-beta2, its receptors TGF-beta R1 and TGF-beta R2, and activator thrombospondin-1 are concordantly suppressed early in breast carcinogenesis by histone modifications and indicate that the TGF-beta signaling pathway is a novel target for gene activation by epigenetic therapy.
    Cancer Research 01/2008; 67(24):11517-27. · 9.28 Impact Factor