The diseases of myelin are among the most prevalent and disabling conditions in neurology. These diseases include both the vascular and inflammatory demyelinating disorders of adulthood, as well as the childhood leukodystrophies and cerebral palsy. These fundamentally glial disorders may be amenable to treatment by glial progenitor cells (GPCs), which give rise to astroglia and myelin-producing oligodendrocytes. Given the development of new methods for generating and isolating human GPCs, the myelin disorders may now be compelling targets for cell-based therapy. In addition, the efficient engraftment and expansion of human GPCs in murine hosts has led to the development of human glial chimeric mouse brains, which provides new opportunities for studying the species-specific roles of human glia in cognition, as well as in disease pathogenesis.
A history of severe allergic reaction to iodine contrast leading to anaphylactic shock presents a dilemma in patients requiring cardiac catheterization. As an alternative, gadolinium has been an interesting and potentially useful agent. However, gadolinium produces poor image quality and has been associated with significant arrhythmias in small case series. Furthermore, there is no consensus about the maximal allowable dose that can be administered to a patient. In the present report, a successful combination of gadolinium contrast with a power injector that produced adequate image quality in a patient with severe allergy to iodine contrast is described. The case was complicated by the occurrence of ventricular fibrillation when damping occurred during injection of contrast into the right coronary artery. This complication has been reported previously with intracoronary gadolinium injection. The report is followed by a brief literature review.
Angiography; Complication; Gadolinium use; Iodine contrast allergy; PCI complication; Percutaneous coronary intervention; Stenting; Ventricular fibrillation
Astrocytes participate in all essential CNS functions, including blood flow regulation, energy metabolism, ion and water homeostasis, immune defence, neurotransmission, and adult neurogenesis. It is thus not surprising that astrocytic morphology and function differ between regions, and that different subclasses of astrocytes exist within the same brain region. Recent lines of work also show that the complexity of protoplasmic astrocytes increases during evolution. Human astrocytes are structurally more complex, larger, and propagate calcium signals significantly faster than rodent astrocytes. In this chapter, we review the diversity of astrocytic form and function, while considering the markedly expanded roles of astrocytes with phylogenetic evolution. We also define major challenges for the future, which include determining how astrocytic functions are locally specified, defining the molecular controls upon astrocytic fate and physiology and establishing how evolutionary changes in astrocytes contribute to higher cognitive functions.
Astrocyte; NG2 cell; Glia; Glia progenitor; Potassium buffering; Epilepsy; Calcium signaling; Purinergic receptors
Huntington’s disease (HD) is an inherited, relentlessly progressive neurodegenerative disease with an invariably fatal outcome. HD is inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion, and is characterized pathologically by the loss of cortical and striatal neurons, and clinically by involuntary choreiform movements accompanied by progressive cognitive impairment and emotional lability. The disorder is caused by an expanded cystosine adenine guanine (CAG) tri-nucleotide repeat encoding polyglutamine (polyQ) in the first exon of the Huntingtin gene. There is a correlation between the number of CAG repeats and disease onset, such that in patients with CAG repeat lengths of 36 to 60, disease symptoms typically manifest after 35 years of age, whereas CAG repeat lengths >60 yield the more severe juvenile form of the disease. Even though mutant huntingtin is expressed throughout the brain, it is characterized by the selective degeneration of medium spiny neurons of the caudate and putamen, which heralds more widespread neuronal degeneration with disease progression. The mechanisms of cell dysfunction and death in HD have been the subjects of a number of studies, which have led to therapeutic strategies largely based on the amelioration of mutant huntingtin-related metabolic impairment and cellular toxicity. Each of these approaches has aimed to delay or stop the preferential degeneration of medium spiny neurons early in the disease course. Yet, in later stages of the disease, after cell death has become prominent, cell replacement therapy (whether by direct cell transplantation or by the mobilization of endogenous progenitors) may comprise a stronger potential avenue for therapy. In this review, we will consider recent progress in the transplantation of fetal striatal cells to the HD brain, as well as emerging alternative sources for human striatal progenitor cells. We will then consider the potential application of gene therapy toward the induction of striatal neurogenesis and neuronal recruitment, with an eye toward its potential therapeutic use in HD.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s13311-011-0075-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Cell therapy; Neural transplants; Stem cells; Neurogenesis; Medium spiny neuron
The value of Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography stress myocardial perfusion imaging (SPECT-MPI) for detecting graft disease after coronary artery bypass surgery (CABG) has not been studied prospectively in an unselected cohort.
Radial Artery Versus Saphenous Vein Graft Study is a Veterans Affairs Cooperative Study to determine graft patency rates after CABG surgery. Seventy-nine participants agreed to SPECT-MPI within 24 hours of their coronary angiogram, one-year after CABG. The choice of the stress protocol was made at the discretion of the nuclear radiologist and was either a symptom-limited exercise test (n = 68) or an adenosine infusion (n = 11). The SPECT-MPI results were interpreted independent of the angiographic results and estimates of sensitivity, specificity and accuracy were based on the prediction of a graft stenosis of ≥70% on coronary angiogram.
A significant stenosis was present in 38 (48%) of 79 patients and 56 (22%) of 251 grafts. In those stress tests with an optimal exercise heart rate response (>80% maximum predicted heart rate) (n = 26) sensitivity, specificity and accuracy of SPECT-MPI for predicting the graft stenosis was 77%, 69% and 73% respectively. With adenosine (n = 11) it was 75%, 57% and 64%, respectively. Among participants with a suboptimal exercise heart rate response, the sensitivity of SPECT-MPI for predicting a graft stenosis was <50%. The accuracy of SPECT-MPI for detecting graft disease did not vary significantly with ischemic territory.
Under optimal stress conditions, SPECT-MPI has a good sensitivity and accuracy for detecting graft disease in an unselected patient population 1 year post-CABG.
Coronary artery bypass grafts; CABG; Coronary artery imaging; Cardiac catheterization/intervention
Malignant gliomas are aggressive brain tumors with limited therapeutic options, and improvements in treatment require a deeper molecular understanding of this disease. As in other cancers, recent studies have identified highly tumorigenic subpopulations within malignant gliomas, known generally as cancer stem cells. Here we demonstrate that glioma stem cells (GSCs) produce nitric oxide via elevated nitric oxide synthase-2 (NOS2) expression. GSCs depend on NOS2 activity for growth and tumorigenicity, distinguishing them from non-GSCs and normal neural progenitors. Gene expression profiling identified many NOS2-regulated genes, including the cell cycle inhibitor cell division autoantigen-1 (CDA1). Further, high NOS2 expression correlates with decreased survival in human glioma patients, and NOS2 inhibition slows glioma growth in a murine intracranial model. These data provide insight into how GSCs are mechanistically distinct from their less tumorigenic counterparts, and suggest that NOS2 inhibition may be an efficacious approach to treating this devastating disease.
Testosterone-induced singing in songbirds is thought to involve testosterone-dependent morphological changes that include angiogenesis and neuronal recruitment into the HVC, a central part of the song control circuit. Previous work showed that testosterone induces the production of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and its receptor (VEGFR2 tyrosine kinase), which in turn leads to an upregulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) production in HVC endothelial cells. Here we report for the first time that systemic inhibition of the VEGFR2 tyrosine kinase is sufficient to block testosterone-induced song in adult female canaries, despite sustained androgen exposure and the persistence of the effects of testosterone on HVC morphology. Expression of exogenous BDNF in HVC, induced locally by in situ transfection, reversed the VEGFR2 inhibition-mediated blockade of song development, thereby restoring the behavioral phenotype associated with androgen-induced song. The VEGFR2-inhibited, BDNF-treated females developed elaborate male-like song that included large syllable repertoires and high syllable repetition rates, features known to attract females. Importantly, although functionally competent new neurons were recruited to HVC after testosterone treatment, the time course of neuronal addition appeared to follow BDNF-induced song development. These findings indicate that testosterone-associated VEGFR2 activity is required for androgen-induced song in adult songbirds and that the behavioral effects of VEGFR2 inhibition can be rescued by BDNF within the adult HVC.
Experimental models of myelin disorders can be treated by the transplantation of oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) into the affected brain or spinal cord. OPCs express gangliosides recognized by MAb A2B5, but this marker also identifies lineage-restricted astrocytes and immature neurons. To establish a more efficient means of isolating myelinogenic OPCs, we asked if FACS could be used to sort PDGFα receptor+ cells from fetal human forebrain, based on expression of the PDGFRα epitope CD140a. CD140a+ isolates were maintained as mitotic bipotential progenitors that could be instructed to either oligodendrocyte or astrocyte fate. Transplanted CD140a+ cells were highly migratory, and rapidly and robustly myelinated the hypomyelinated shiverer mouse brain, more efficiently than did A2B5-sorted cells. Microarray analysis of CD140a+ cells revealed their differential expression of CD9, as well as of PTN-PTPRZ1, wnt, notch and BMP pathway components, indicating the dynamic interaction of self-renewal and fate-restricting pathways in these cells.
oligodendrocyte progenitor; PDGF receptor; myelin; remyelination
The childhood leukodystrophies are characterized by neonatal or childhood deficiencies in myelin production or maintenance; these may be due to hereditary defects in genes for myelin maintenance, as in Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease, or to enzymatic deficiencies resulting in substrate misaccumulation or misprocessing, as in the lysosomal storage disorders. Regardless of their respective etiologies, these disorders are essentially all manifested by a profound deterioration in neurological function with age. A congenital deficit in forebrain myelination is also noted in children with the periventricular leukomalacia of cerebral palsy, which yields a more static morbidity. In light of the wide range of disorders to which congenital hypomyelination or postnatal demyelination may contribute, and the relative homogeneity of oligodendrocytes and their progenitors, the leukodystrophies may be especially attractive targets for cell-based therapeutic strategies. As a result, glial progenitor cells, which can give rise to new myelinogenic oligodendrocytes, have become of great interest as potential vectors for the restoration of myelin to the dysmyelinated brain and spinal cord. In addition, by distributing throughout the neuraxis after perinatal graft, and giving rise to astrocytes as well as oligodendrocytes, glial progenitor cells may be of great utility in rectifying the dysmyelination-associated enzymatic deficiencies of the lysosomal storage disorders.
Congenitally hypomyelinated shiverer mice fail to generate compact myelin, and die by 18–21 weeks of age. Using multifocal anterior and posterior fossa delivery of sorted fetal human glial progenitor cells into neonatal shiverer x rag2−/− immunodeficient and myelin-deficient mice, we achieved whole neuraxis myelination of the engrafted hosts, which in a significant fraction of cases rescued this otherwise lethal phenotype. The transplanted mice exhibited greatly prolonged survival, some surviving beyond a year, with progressive resolution of their neurological deficits. Accordingly, they exhibited substantial myelination of the brain, brainstem and cerebellum, as well as the spinal cord, optic nerves, and cranial ganglia. This was accompanied by the acquisition of normal nodes of Ranvier and transcallosal conduction velocities, ultrastructurally normal and complete myelination of most axons, and a restoration of a substantially normal neurological phenotype. Notably, the resultant mice were cerebral chimeras, with murine gray matter but a predominantly human white matter glial composition. These data demonstrate that the neonatal transplantation of human glial progenitor cells can effectively treat disorders of congenital and perinatal hypomyelination.
oligodendrocyte progenitor; neural stem cell; transplantation; myelin; remyelination; leukodystrophy
Sox2 is expressed by neural stem and progenitor cells, and a sox2 enhancer identifies these cells in the forebrains of both fetal and adult transgenic mouse reporters. We found that an adenovirus encoding EGFP placed under the regulatory control of a 0.4 kb sox2 core enhancer selectively identified multipotential and self-renewing neural progenitor cells in dissociates of human fetal forebrain. Upon EGFP-based fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS), the E/sox2:EGFP+ isolates were propagable for up to a year in vitro, and remained multilineage competent throughout. E/sox2:EGFP+ cells expressed more telomerase enzymatic activity than matched sox2-depleted populations, and maintained their telomeric lengths with successive passage. Gene expression analysis of E/sox2:EGFP-sorted neural progenitor cells, normalized to the unsorted forebrain dissociates from which they derived, revealed marked over-expression of genes within the notch and wnt pathways, and identified multiple elements of each pathway that appear selective to human neural progenitors. Sox2 enhancer-based FACS thus permits the prospective identification and direct isolation of a telomerase-active population of neural stem cells from the human fetal forebrain, and the elucidation of both the transcriptome and dominant signaling pathways of these critically important cells.
Neural stem cells; telomerase; gene expression; cell sorting
Recent in vivo studies have established astrocytes as a major target for locus coeruleus activation (Bekar et al., Cereb. Cortex 18, 2789–2795), renewing interest in cell culture studies on noradrenergic effects on astrocytes in primary cultures and calling for additional information about the expression of adrenoceptor subtypes on different types of brain cells. In the present communication, mRNA expression of α1-, α2- and β-adrenergic receptors and their subtypes was determined in freshly-isolated, cell marker-defined populations of astrocytes, NG2-positive cells, microglia, endothelial cells, and Thy1-positive neurons (mainly glutamatergic projection neurons) in murine cerebral cortex. Immediately after dissection of frontal, parietal and occipital cortex of 10–12-week-old transgenic mice, which combined each cell-type marker with a specific fluorescent signal, the tissue was digested, triturated and centrifuged, yielding a solution of dissociated cells of all types, which were separated by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). mRNA expression in each cell fraction was determined by microarray analysis. α1A-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes and NG2-positive cells, but absent in other cell types, and α1B-receptors were not expressed in any cell population. Among α2-receptors only α2A-receptors were expressed, unequivocally in astrocytes and NG-positive cells, tentatively in microglia and questionably in Thy1-positive neurons and endothelial cells. β1-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes, tentatively in microglia, and questionably in neurons and endothelial cells, whereas β2-adrenergic receptors showed tentative expression in neurons and astrocytes and unequivocal expression in other cell types. This distribution was supported by immunochemical data and its relevance established by previous studies in well-differentiated primary cultures of mouse astrocytes, showing that stimulation of α2-adrenoceptors increases glycogen formation and oxidative metabolism, the latter by a mechanism depending on intramitochondrial Ca2+, whereas α1-adrenoceptor stimulation enhances glutamate uptake, and β-adrenoceptor activation causes glycogenolysis and increased Na+,K+-ATPase activity. The Ca2+- and cAMP-mediated association between energy-consuming and energy-yielding processes is emphasized.
alpha2A receptor; astrocytes; fluorescence-activated cell sorting; free cytosolic Ca2+ concentration; NG2-positive cells; oxidative metabolism
Cell-based therapy for myocardial infarction (MI) holds great promise; however, the ideal cell type and delivery system have not been established. Obstacles in the field are the massive cell death after direct injection and the small percentage of surviving cells differentiating into cardiomyocytes. To overcome these challenges we designed a novel study to deliver cardiac progenitor cells as a cell sheet.
Methods and results
Cell sheets composed of rat or human cardiac progenitor cells (cardiospheres), and cardiac stromal cells were transplanted onto the infarcted myocardium after coronary artery ligation in rats. Three weeks later, transplanted cells survived, proliferated, and differentiated into cardiomyocytes (14.6 ± 4.7%). Cell sheet transplantation suppressed cardiac wall thinning and increased capillary density (194 ± 20 vs. 97 ± 24 per mm2, P < 0.05) compared with the untreated MI. Cell migration from the sheet was observed along the necrotic trails within the infarcted area. The migrated cells were located in the vicinity of stromal-derived factor (SDF-1) released from the injured myocardium, and about 20% of these cells expressed CXCR4, suggesting that the SDF-1/CXCR4 axis plays, at least, a role in cell migration. Transplantation of cell sheets resulted in a preservation of cardiac contractile function after MI, as was shown by a greater ejection fraction and lower left ventricular end diastolic pressure compared with untreated MI.
The scaffold-free cardiosphere-derived cell sheet approach seeks to efficiently deliver cells and increase cell survival. These transplanted cells effectively rescue myocardium function after infarction by promoting not only neovascularization but also inducing a significant level of cardiomyogenesis.
Myocardial infarction; Cardiac progenitor cells; Cardiospheres; Cardiac regeneration; Contractility
Cerebral lactic acid, a product of ischemic anaerobic glycolysis, may directly contribute to ischemic brain damage in vivo. In this study we evaluated the effects of extracellular acid exposure on 7-day-old cultures of embryonic rat forebrain. Mixed neuronal and glial cultures were exposed to either lactic or hydrochloric acid to compare the toxicities of relatively permeable and impermeable acids. Neurons were relatively resistant to extracellular HCl acidosis, often surviving 10-min exposures to pH 3.8. In the same cultures, immunochemically defined astrocytes survived 10-min HCl exposures to a maximum acidity of pH 4.2. Similarly, axonal bundles defasciculated in HCl-titrated media below pH 4.4, although their constituent fibers often survived pH 3.8. Cell death occurred at higher pH in cultures subjected to lactic acidosis than in those exposed to HCl. Over half of forebrain neurons and glia subjected for 10 min to lactic acidification failed to survive exposure to pH 4.9. Longer 1-h lactic acid incubations resulted in cell death below pH 5.2. The potent cytotoxicity of lactic acid may be a direct result of the relatively rapid transfer of its neutral protonated form across cell membranes. This process would rapidly deplete intracellular buffer stores, resulting in unchecked cytosolic acidification. Neuronal and glial death from extracellular acidosis may therefore be a function of both the degree and the rapidity of intracellular acidification.
Acidosis; Astrocyte; Cell death; Hypoxia; Ischemia; Neurons; Stroke
We have examined primary human neuronal precursors (HNPs) from 18–22-week-old fetuses. We showed that E-NCAM/MAP2/β-III tubulin-immunoreactive neuronal precursors divide in vitro and could be induced to differentiate into mature neurons in 2 weeks. HNPs did not express nestin and differentiated slowly compared to rodent neuronal restricted precursors (NRPs, 5 days). Immunocytochemical and physiological analyses showed that HNPs could generate a heterogeneous population of neurons that expressed neurofilament-associated protein and various neurotransmitters, neurotransmitter synthesizing enzymes, voltage-gated ion channels, and ligand-gated neurotransmitter receptors and could fire action potentials. Undifferentiated and differentiated HNPs did not coexpress glial markers. Only a subset of cells that expressed GFP under the control of the Tα1 tubulin promoter was E-NCAM/β-III tubulin-immunoreactive, indicating nonexclusive overlap between these two HNP cell populations. Overall, HNPs resemble NRPs isolated from rodent tissue and appear to be a neuronal precursor population.
stem cells; differentiation; electrophysiology
This study investigated the hypothesis that baseline calcified coronary atherosclerosis may determine cardiovascular disease events in response to intensive glycemic control within the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT).
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
At baseline, 301 type 2 diabetic participants in the VADT, a randomized trial comparing the effects of intensive versus standard glucose lowering on cardiovascular events, had baseline coronary atherosclerosis assessed by coronary artery calcium (CAC) measured by computed tomography. Participants were followed over the 7.5-year study for development of cardiovascular end points.
During a median follow-up duration of 5.2 years, 89 cardiovascular events occurred. Although intensive glucose-lowering therapy did not significantly reduce cardiovascular events in the substudy cohort as a whole, there was evidence that the response was modified by baseline CAC, as indicated by significant P values for treatment by log(CAC + 1) interaction terms in unadjusted and multivariable-adjusted models (0.01 and 0.03, respectively). Multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) for the effect of treatment indicated a progressive diminution of benefit with increasing CAC. Subgroup analyses were also conducted for clinically relevant CAC categories: those above and below an Agatston score of 100. Among those randomized to intensive treatment, for the subgroup with CAC >100, 11 of 62 individuals had events, while only 1 of 52 individuals with CAC ≤100 had an event. The multivariable HR for intensive treatment for those with CAC >100 was 0.74 (95% CI 0.46–1.20; P = 0.21), while for the subgroup with CAC ≤100, the corresponding HR was 0.08 (0.008–0.77; P = 0.03), with event rates of 39 and 4 per 1,000 person-years, respectively.
These data indicate that intensive glucose lowering reduces cardiovascular events in those with less extensive calcified coronary atherosclerosis.
Defining the microanatomic differences between the human brain and that of other mammals is key to understanding its unique computational power. While much effort has been devoted to comparative studies of neurons, astrocytes have received far less attention. We report here that protoplasmic astrocytes in human neocortex are 2.6 fold larger in diameter and extend 10-fold more GFAP+ primary processes than their rodent counterparts. In cortical slices prepared from acutely resected surgical tissue, protoplasmic astrocytes propagate Ca2+ waves with a speed of 36 µm/second, approximately 4-fold faster than rodent. Human astrocytes also transiently increase cystosolic Ca2+ in response to glutamatergic and purinergic receptor agonists. The human neocortex also harbors several anatomically-defined subclasses of astrocytes not represented in rodents. These include a population of astrocytes that reside in layers 5–6 and extend long fibers characterized by regularly spaced varicosities. Another specialized type of astrocyte, the interlaminar astrocyte, abundantly populates the superficial cortical layers and extends long processes without varicosities to cortical layers 3 and 4. Human fibrous astrocytes resemble their rodent counterpart, but are larger in diameter. Thus, human cortical astrocytes are both larger, and structurally both more complex and more diverse, than those of rodents. On this basis, we posit that this astrocytic complexity has permitted the increased functional competence of the adult human brain.
astrocyte; cortex; evolution; Gfa [Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein]; Glutamate receptor; Histochemistry; Human; Purinergic; Structure
This study was designed to determine if a viable biodegradable three-dimensional fibroblast construct (3DFC) patch implanted on the left ventricle after myocardial infarction (MI) improves left ventricular (LV) function and blood flow. We ligated the left coronary artery of adult male Sprague-Dawley rats and implanted the 3DFC at the time of the infarct. Three weeks after MI, the 3DFC improved LV systolic function by increasing (p < 0.05) ejection fraction (37 ± 3% to 62 ± 5%), increasing regional systolic displacement of the infarcted wall (0.04 ± 0.02 to 0.11 ± 0.03 cm), and shifting the passive LV diastolic pressure volume relationship toward the pressure axis. The 3FDC improved LV remodeling by decreasing (p < 0.05) LV end-systolic and end-diastolic diameters with no change in LV systolic pressure. The 3DFC did not change LV end-diastolic pressure (LV EDP; 25 ± 2 vs. 23 ± 2 mmHg) but the addition of captopril (2mg/L drinking water) lowered (p < 0.05) LV EDP to 12.9 ± 2.5 mmHg and shifted the pressure–volume relationship toward the pressure axis and decreased (p < 0.05) the LV operating end-diastolic volume from 0.49 ± 0.02 to 0.34 ± 0.03 ml. The 3DFC increased myocardial blood flow to the infarcted anterior wall after MI over threefold (p < 0.05). This biodegradable 3DFC patch improves LV function and myocardial blood flow 3 weeks after MI. This is a potentially new approach to cell-based therapy for heart failure after MI.
Acute myocardial infarct; Fibroblasts; Growth factors; Angiogenesis; Extracellular matrix; Bioabsorbable scaffold
Ependymal overexpression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) stimulates neuronal addition to the adult striatum, from subependymal progenitor cells. Noggin, by suppressing subependymal gliogenesis and increasing progenitor availability, potentiates this process. We asked whether BDNF/Noggin overexpression might be used to recruit new striatal neurons in R6/2 huntingtin transgenic mice. R6/2 mice injected with adenoviral BDNF and adenoviral Noggin (AdBDNF/AdNoggin) recruited BrdU+βIII-tubulin+ neurons, which developed as DARPP-32+ and GABAergic medium spiny neurons that expressed either enkephalin or substance P and extended fibers to the globus pallidus. Only AdBDNF/AdNoggin-treated R6/2 mice harbored migrating doublecortin-defined neuroblasts in their striata, and the new neurons expressed p27 as a marker of mitotic quiescence after parenchymal integration. AdBDNF/AdNoggin-treated R6/2 mice sustained their rotarod performance and open-field activity and survived longer than did AdNull-treated and untreated controls. Neither motor performance nor survival improved in R6/2 mice treated only with AdBDNF, and intraventricular infusion of the mitotic inhibitor Ara-C completely blocked the performance and survival effects of AdBDNF/AdNoggin, suggesting that the benefits of AdBDNF/AdNoggin derived from neuronal addition. Thus, BDNF and Noggin induced striatal neuronal regeneration, delayed motor impairment, and extended survival in R6/2 mice, suggesting a new therapeutic strategy in Huntington disease.
Diseases of the brain and spinal cord represent especially daunting challenges for cell-based strategies of repair, given the multiplicity of cell types within the adult central nervous system, and the precision with which they must interact in both space and time. Nonetheless, a number of diseases are especially appropriate for cell-based therapy, in particular those in which single phenotypes are lost, and in which the re-establishment of vectorially specific connections is not entirely requisite for therapeutic benefit. We review here a set of potential therapeutic indications that meet these criteria as potentially benefiting from the transplantation of neural stem and progenitor cells. These include: (i) transplantation of phenotypically restricted neuronal progenitor cells into diseases of a single neuronal phenotype, such as Parkinson's disease; (ii) implantation of mixed progenitor pools into diseases characterized by the loss of a limited number of discrete phenotypes, such as spinal cord injury and the motor neuronopathies; (iii) transplantation of glial and nominally oligodendrocytic progenitor cells as a means of treating disorders of myelin; and (iv) transplantation of neural stem cells as a means of treating lysosomal storage disorders and other diseases of enzymatic deficiency. Among the diseases potentially approachable by these strategies, the myelin disorders, including the paediatric leucodystrophies as well as adult traumatic and inflammatory demyelinations, may present the most compelling targets for cell-based neurological therapy.
leucodystrophy; oligodendrocyte; glial progenitor cell; transplantation; neural stem cell
More than seventeen million Americans are afflicted with diabetes and these people have four times the rate of coronary heart disease (CHD) as non-diabetics. Furthermore, diabetic women have a 3.8 fold greater risk for CHD compared to diabetic men. Little is known why diabetic women are at an increased risk for CHD. It is possible that diabetic women with cardiovascular disease (CVD) have a greater inflammatory response resulting in an increased platelet neutrophil conjugate formation than diabetic men with CVD or non-diabetic women with CVD. This study tested the hypothesis that platelet-neutrophil conjugates, which are associated with several cardiovascular diseases, are increased in diabetic women with CVD compared to diabetic men with CVD and non-diabetic women with CVD.
Platelet-neutrophil conjugates were quantified by flow cytometry. The primary method is through direct binding of the neutrophil PSGL-1 receptor with P-selectin expressed on the platelet.
In this study, we found when the blood was stimulated with PAF (platelet activating factor), diabetic women without CVD demonstrated an increase in platelet-neutrophil conjugates compared to diabetic women with CVD and non-diabetic women with CVD (% conjugates: 63.3 ± 5.2 vs 46.8 ± 4.3 vs 48.6 ± 3.4, p < 0.05). The stimulation ratio was significantly increased in diabetic and non-diabetic women with CVD in comparison to diabetic men with CVD (ratio: 3.3 ± 0.4 vs 3.3 ± 0.3 vs 2.1 ± 0.3, p < 0.05).
These results suggest that platelets and neutrophils in diabetic women have a greater potential for activation compared to diabetic men and may contribute to thrombosis/inflammation and the greater severity of coronary heart disease observed in diabetic women as compared to diabetic men.
Cardiovascular Disease; Women; Platelet-Neutrophil Conjugates; and Diabetes