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1.  CORTICAL REMYELINATION: A NEW TARGET FOR REPAIR THERAPIES IN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS 
Annals of neurology  2012;72(6):918-926.
Objective
Generation and differentiation of new oligodendrocytes in demyelinated white matter is the best described repair process in the adult human brain. However, remyelinating capacity falters with age in patients with multiple sclerosis. (MS). Since demyelination of cerebral cortex is extensive in brains from MS patients, we investigated the capacity of cortical lesions to remyelinate and directly compared the extent of remyelination in lesions that involve cerebral cortex and adjacent subcortical white matter.
Methods
Postmortem brain tissue from 22 patients with MS (age 27 to 77 years) and 6 subjects without brain disease were analyzed. Regions of cerebral cortex with reduced myelin were examined for remyelination, oligodendrocyte progenitor cells, reactive astrocytes, and molecules that inhibit remyelination.
Results
“New” oligodendrocytes that were actively forming myelin sheaths were identified in 30/42 remyelinated subpial cortical lesions, including lesions from three patients in their 70's. Oligodendrocyte progenitor cells were not decreased in demyelinated or remyelinated cortices when compared to adjacent normal-appearing cortex or controls. In demyelinated lesions involving cortex and adjacent white matter, the cortex showed greater remyelination, more actively remyelinating oligodendrocytes and fewer reactive astrocytes. Astrocytes in the white-matter, but not in cortical portions of these lesions, significantly up-regulate CD44, hyaluronan, and versican, molecules that form complexes that inhibit oligodendrocyte maturation and remyelination.
Interpretation
Endogenous remyelination of the cerebral cortex occurs in individuals with MS regardless of disease duration or chronological age of the patient. Cortical remyelination should be considered as a primary outcome measure in future clinical trials testing remyelination therapies.
doi:10.1002/ana.23693
PMCID: PMC3535551  PMID: 23076662
multiple sclerosis; remyelination
2.  Gene Expression Profiling in Multiple Sclerosis Brain 
Neurobiology of disease  2010;45(1):108-114.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system and the leading cause of non-traumatic neurological disability in young adults in the United States and Europe. The clinical disease course is variable and starts with reversible episodes of neurological disability in the third or fourth decade of life. Microarray-based comparative gene profiling provides a snapshot of genes underlying a particular condition. Several large scale microarray studies have been conducted using brain tissue from MS patients. In this review, we summarize existing data from different gene expression profiling studies and how they relate to understanding the pathogenesis of MS.
doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2010.12.003
PMCID: PMC3066282  PMID: 21147224
Multiple sclerosis; microarray; myelin
3.  Identification of VHY/Dusp15 as a Regulator of Oligodendrocyte Differentiation through a Systematic Genomics Approach 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(7):e40457.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a neuroinflammatory disease characterized by a progressive loss of myelin and a failure of oligodendrocyte (OL)-mediated remyelination, particularly in the progressive phases of the disease. An improved understanding of the signaling mechanisms that control differentiation of OL precursors may lead to the identification of new therapeutic targets for remyelination in MS. About 100 mammalian Protein Tyrosine Phosphatases (PTPs) are known, many of which are involved in signaling both in health and disease. We have undertaken a systematic genomic approach to evaluate PTP gene activity in multiple sclerosis autopsies and in related in vivo and in vitro models of the disease. This effort led to the identification of Dusp15/VHY, a PTP previously believed to be expressed only in testis, as being transcriptionally regulated during OL differentiation and in MS lesions. Subsequent RNA interference studies revealed that Dusp15/VHY is a key regulator of OL differentiation. Finally, we identified PDGFR-beta and SNX6 as novel and specific Dusp15 substrates, providing an indication as to how this PTP might exert control over OL differentiation.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0040457
PMCID: PMC3394735  PMID: 22792334
4.  Demyelination Causes Synaptic Alterations in Hippocampi from Multiple Sclerosis Patients 
Annals of neurology  2011;69(3):445-454.
Background
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory demyelinating disease of the human central nervous system. While the clinical impact of gray matter pathology in MS brains is unknown, 30–40% of MS patients demonstrate memory impairment. The molecular basis of this memory dysfunction has not yet been investigated in MS patients.
Method
To investigate possible mechanisms of memory impairment in MS patients, we compared morphological and molecular changes in myelinated and demyelinated hippocampi from postmortem MS brains.
Findings
Demyelinated hippocampi had minimal neuronal loss but significant decreases in synaptic density. Neuronal proteins essential for axonal transport, synaptic plasticity, glutamate neurotransmission, glutamate homeostasis and memory/learning were significantly decreased in demyelinated hippocampi, but not in demyelinated motor cortices from MS brains.
Interpretation
Collectively, these data support hippocampal demyelination as a cause of synaptic alterations in MS patients and establish that the neuronal genes regulated by myelination reflect specific functions of neuronal subpopulations.
doi:10.1002/ana.22337
PMCID: PMC3073544  PMID: 21446020
Multiple Sclerosis; hippocampus; demyelination; memory
5.  Mechanisms of Neuronal Dysfunction and Degeneration in Multiple Sclerosis 
Progress in neurobiology  2010;93(1):1-12.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system. Due to its high prevalence, MS is the leading cause of non-traumatic neurological disability in young adults in the United States and Europe. The clinical disease course is variable and starts with reversible episodes of neurological disability in the third or fourth decade of life. This transforms into a disease of continuous and irreversible neurological decline by the sixth or seventh decade. Available therapies for MS patients have little benefit for patients who enter this irreversible phase of the disease. It is well established that irreversible loss of axons and neurons are the major cause of the irreversible and progressive neurological decline that most MS patients endure. This review discusses the etiology, mechanisms and progress made in determining the cause of axonal and neuronal loss in MS.
doi:10.1016/j.pneurobio.2010.09.005
PMCID: PMC3030928  PMID: 20946934
Multiple sclerosis; neurons; axons; myelin
6.  Alteration in Marrow Stromal Microenvironment and Apoptosis Mechanisms Involved in Aplastic Anemia: An Animal Model to Study the Possible Disease Pathology 
Stem Cells International  2010;2010:932354.
Aplastic anemia (AA) is a heterogeneous disorder of bone marrow failure syndrome. Suggested mechanisms include a primary stem cell deficiency or defect, a secondary stem cell defect due to abnormal regulation between cell death and differentiation, or a deficient microenvironment. In this study, we have tried to investigate the alterations in hematopoietic microenvironment and underlying mechanisms involved in such alterations in an animal model of drug induced AA. We presented the results of studying long term marrow culture, marrow ultra-structure, marrow adherent and hematopoietic progenitor cell colony formation, flowcytometric analysis of marrow stem and stromal progenitor populations and apoptosis mechanism involved in aplastic anemia. The AA marrow showed impairment in cellular proliferation and maturation and failed to generate a functional stromal microenvironment even after 19 days of culture. Ultra-structural analysis showed a degenerated and deformed marrow cellular association in AA. Colony forming units (CFUs) were also severely reduced in AA. Significantly decreased marrow stem and stromal progenitor population with subsequently increased expression levels of both the extracellular and intracellular apoptosis inducer markers in the AA marrow cells essentially pointed towards the defective hematopoiesis; moreover, a deficient and apoptotic microenvironment and the microenvironmental components might have played the important role in the possible pathogenesis of AA.
doi:10.4061/2010/932354
PMCID: PMC2963319  PMID: 21048856
7.  Primitive Sca-1 Positive Bone Marrow HSC in Mouse Model of Aplastic Anemia: A Comparative Study through Flowcytometric Analysis and Scanning Electron Microscopy 
Stem Cells International  2009;2010:614395.
Self-renewing Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs) are responsible for reconstitution of all blood cell lineages. Sca-1 is the “stem cell antigen” marker used to identify the primitive murine HSC population, the expression of which decreases upon differentiation to other mature cell types. Sca-1+ HSCs maintain the bone marrow stem cell pool throughout the life. Aplastic anemia is a disease considered to involve primary stem cell deficiency and is characterized by severe pancytopenia and a decline in healthy blood cell generation system. Studies conducted in our laboratory revealed that the primitive Sca-1+ BM-HSCs (bone marrow hematopoietic stem cell) are significantly affected in experimental Aplastic animals pretreated with chemotherapeutic drugs (Busulfan and Cyclophosphamide) and there is increased Caspase-3 activity with consecutive high Annexin-V positivity leading to premature apoptosis in the bone marrow hematopoietic stem cell population in Aplastic condition. The Sca-1bright, that is, “more primitive” BM-HSC population was more affected than the “less primitive” BM-HSC Sca-1dim  population. The decreased cell population and the receptor expression were directly associated with an empty and deranged marrow microenvironment, which is evident from scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The above experimental evidences hint toward the manipulation of receptor expression for the benefit of cytotherapy by primitive stem cell population in Aplastic anemia cases.
doi:10.4061/2010/614395
PMCID: PMC2963143  PMID: 21048851

Results 1-7 (7)