Phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 regulates sensory cell proliferation and differentiation of hair bundles in the mammalian cochlea

Department of Cell Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Kagawa University, 1750-1 Ikenobe, Miki-cho, Kita-gun, Kagawa 761-0793, Japan.
Neuroscience (Impact Factor: 3.36). 11/2010; 170(4):1304-13. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2010.08.024
Source: PubMed


Phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) is a tumor suppressor gene that regulates cell proliferation, differentiation and growth. It regulates neural and glioma stem/progenitor cell renewal and PTEN deletion can drive expansion of epithelial progenitors in the lung, enhancing their capacity for regeneration. Because it is expressed at relatively high levels in developing mammalian auditory hair cells we have analyzed the phenotype of the auditory epithelium in PTEN knock-out mice. PTEN(+/-) heterozygous littermates have only one functional copy of the gene and show clear evidence for haploinsufficiency in the organ of Corti. Auditory sensory epithelial progenitors withdraw from the cell cycle later than in wild-type animals and this is associated with increases in the numbers of both inner and outer hair cells. The cytoskeletal differentiation of hair cells was also affected. While many hair bundles on the hair cells appeared to develop normally, others were structurally disorganized and a number were missing, apparently lost after they had been formed. The results show that PTEN plays a novel role in regulating cell proliferation and differentiation of hair bundles in auditory sensory epithelial cells and suggest that PTEN signaling pathways may provide therapeutic targets for auditory sensory regeneration.

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    ABSTRACT: The organ of Corti in the mammalian inner ear is comprised of mechanosensory hair cells (HCs) and nonsensory supporting cells (SCs), both of which are believed to be terminally post-mitotic beyond late embryonic ages. Consequently, regeneration of HCs and SCs does not occur naturally in the adult mammalian cochlea, though recent evidence suggests that these cells may not be completely or irreversibly quiescent in at earlier postnatal ages. Furthermore, regenerative processes can be induced by genetic and pharmacological manipulations, but, more and more reports suggest that regenerative potential declines as the organ of Corti continues to age. In numerous mammalian systems, such effects of aging on regenerative potential are well established. However, in the cochlea, the problem of regeneration has not been traditionally viewed as one of aging. This is an important consideration as current models are unable to elicit widespread regeneration or full recovery of function at adult ages yet regenerative therapies will need to be developed specifically for adult populations. Still, the advent of gene targeting and other genetic manipulations has established mice as critically important models for the study of cochlear development and HC regeneration and suggests that auditory HC regeneration in adult mammals may indeed be possible. Thus, this review will focus on the pursuit of regeneration in the postnatal and adult mouse cochlea and highlight processes that occur during postnatal development, maturation, and aging that could contribute to an age-related decline in regenerative potential. Second, we will draw upon the wealth of knowledge pertaining to age related senescence in tissues outside of the ear to synthesize new insights and potentially guide future research aimed at promoting HC regeneration in the adult cochlea.
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    ABSTRACT: Phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) is a tumor suppressor gene that regulates various cell processes including proliferation, growth, synaptogenesis, neural and glioma stem/progenitor cell renewal. In addition, PTEN can regulate sensory cell proliferation and differentiation of hair bundles in the mammalian cochlea. In this study we use immunofluorescence, western blot and RT-PCR to reveal the expression of PTEN in the developing cochlear lateral wall, which is crucial for regulating K(+) homeostasis. Relatively high levels of PTEN are initially expressed in the marginal cells (MCs) of the lateral wall at embryonic day (E) 17.5 when they start to differentiate. Similarly high levels are subsequently expressed in differentiating root cells (RCs) at postnatal day (P) 3 and then in spiral ligament fibrocytes (SLFs) at postnatal day (P) 10. In the mature cochlea, PTEN expression is low or undetectable in MCs and SLFs but it remains high in RCs and their processes. The expression pattern for PTEN in the developing lateral wall suggests that it plays a critical role in the differentiation of the cellular pathways that regulate K(+) homeostasis in the cochlea.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2013 · Neuroscience
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    ABSTRACT: The organ of Corti, which is the sensory organ of hearing, consists of a single row of inner hair cells and three rows of outer hair cells in mice. The auditory hair cells develop from auditory progenitors. Hair cell development is related to several genes, including PTEN. Homozygous null mutant (PTEN) mice die at around embryonic day 9, when hair cells are extremely immature. Moreover, in heterozygous PTEN knockout mice, it was found that PTEN regulates the proliferation of auditory progenitors. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism underlying this regulation. In the present study, we generated PTEN conditional knockout in the inner ear of mice and studied the aforementioned molecular mechanisms. Our results showed that PTEN knockout resulted in supernumerary hair cells, increased p-Akt level, and decreased p27 level. Furthermore, the presence of supernumerary hair cells could be explained by the delayed withdrawal of auditory progenitors from the cell cycle. The increased p-Akt level correlates with p27 downregulation in the cochlea in the Pax2-PTEN mice. The reduced p27 could not maintain the auditory progenitors in the nonproliferative state and some progenitors continued to divide. Consequently, additional progenitors differentiated into supernumerary hair cells. We suggest that PTEN regulates p27 through p-Akt, thereby regulating the proliferation and differentiation of auditory progenitors.
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