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Sample records for midbrain dopaminergic neurons

  1. Transcriptional comparison of human induced and primary midbrain dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Ninuo; Zhang, Pengbo; Fang, Fang; Wang, Zhengyuan; Rothstein, Megan; Angulo, Benjamin; Chiang, Rosaria; Taylor, James; Reijo Pera, Renee A.

    2016-01-01

    Generation of induced dopaminergic (iDA) neurons may provide a significant step forward towards cell replacement therapy for Parkinson’s disease (PD). To study and compare transcriptional programs of induced cells versus primary DA neurons is a preliminary step towards characterizing human iDA neurons. We have optimized a protocol to efficiently generate iDA neurons from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). We then sequenced the transcriptomes of iDA neurons derived from 6 different hPSC lines and compared them to that of primary midbrain (mDA) neurons. We identified a small subset of genes with altered expression in derived iDA neurons from patients with Parkinson’s Disease (PD). We also observed that iDA neurons differ significantly from primary mDA neurons in global gene expression, especially in genes related to neuron maturation level. Results suggest iDA neurons from patient iPSCs could be useful for basic and translational studies, including in vitro modeling of PD. However, further refinement of methods of induction and maturation of neurons may better recapitulate full development of mDA neurons from hPSCs. PMID:26842779

  2. The Transcription Factor Orthodenticle Homeobox 2 Influences Axonal Projections and Vulnerability of Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chung, Chee Yeun; Licznerski, Pawel; Alavian, Kambiz N.; Simeone, Antonio; Lin, Zhicheng; Martin, Eden; Vance, Jeffery; Isacson, Ole

    2010-01-01

    Two adjacent groups of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, A9 (substantia nigra pars compacta) and A10 (ventral tegmental area), have distinct projections and exhibit differential vulnerability in Parkinson's disease. Little is known about transcription factors that influence midbrain dopaminergic subgroup phenotypes or their potential role in disease.…

  3. Striatal vessels receive phosphorylated tyrosine hydroxylase-rich innervation from midbrain dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Afonso-Oramas, Domingo; Cruz-Muros, Ignacio; Castro-Hernández, Javier; Salas-Hernández, Josmar; Barroso-Chinea, Pedro; García-Hernández, Sonia; Lanciego, José L.; González-Hernández, Tomás

    2014-01-01

    Nowadays it is assumed that besides its roles in neuronal processing, dopamine (DA) is also involved in the regulation of cerebral blood flow. However, studies on the hemodynamic actions of DA have been mainly focused on the cerebral cortex, but the possibility that vessels in deeper brain structures receive dopaminergic axons and the origin of these axons have not been investigated. Bearing in mind the evidence of changes in the blood flow of basal ganglia in Parkinson’s disease (PD), and the pivotal role of the dopaminergic mesostriatal pathway in the pathophysiology of this disease, here we studied whether striatal vessels receive inputs from midbrain dopaminergic neurons. The injection of an anterograde neuronal tracer in combination with immunohistochemistry for dopaminergic, vascular and astroglial markers, and dopaminergic lesions, revealed that midbrain dopaminergic axons are in close apposition to striatal vessels and perivascular astrocytes. These axons form dense perivascular plexuses restricted to striatal regions in rats and monkeys. Interestingly, they are intensely immunoreactive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) phosphorylated at Ser19 and Ser40 residues. The presence of phosphorylated TH in vessel terminals indicates they are probably the main source of basal TH activity in the striatum, and that after activation of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, DA release onto vessels precedes that onto neurons. Furthermore, the relative weight of this “vascular component” within the mesostriatal pathway suggests that it plays a relevant role in the pathophysiology of PD. PMID:25206324

  4. Parkinson's disease candidate gene prioritization based on expression profile of midbrain dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder. The pathological hallmark of the disease is degeneration of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Genetic association studies have linked 13 human chromosomal loci to Parkinson's disease. Identification of gene(s), as part of the etiology of Parkinson's disease, within the large number of genes residing in these loci can be achieved through several approaches, including screening methods, and considering appropriate criteria. Since several of the indentified Parkinson's disease genes are expressed in substantia nigra pars compact of the midbrain, expression within the neurons of this area could be a suitable criterion to limit the number of candidates and identify PD genes. Methods In this work we have used the combination of findings from six rodent transcriptome analysis studies on the gene expression profile of midbrain dopaminergic neurons and the PARK loci in OMIM (Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man) database, to identify new candidate genes for Parkinson's disease. Results Merging the two datasets, we identified 20 genes within PARK loci, 7 of which are located in an orphan Parkinson's disease locus and one, which had been identified as a disease gene. In addition to identifying a set of candidates for further genetic association studies, these results show that the criteria of expression in midbrain dopaminergic neurons may be used to narrow down the number of genes in PARK loci for such studies. PMID:20716345

  5. Parkin Controls Dopamine Utilization in Human Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons Derived from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Houbo; Ren, Yong; Yuen, Eunice Y; Zhong, Ping; Ghaedi, Mahboobe; Hu, Zhixing; Azabdaftari, Gissou; Nakaso, Kazuhiro; Yan, Zhen; Feng, Jian

    2012-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) is defined by the degeneration of nigral dopaminergic (DA) neurons and can be caused by monogenic mutations of genes such as parkin. The lack of phenotype in parkin knockout mice suggests that human nigral DA neurons have unique vulnerabilities. Through the generation and analyses of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from normal subjects and PD patients with parkin mutations, we show here that loss of parkin in human midbrain DA neurons greatly increased the transcription of monoamine oxidases and oxidative stress, significantly reduced DA uptake and increased spontaneous DA release. Lentiviral expression of parkin, but not its PD-linked mutant, rescued all the phenotypes. The results suggest that parkin controls dopamine utilization in human midbrain DA neurons by enhancing the precision of dopaminergic neurotransmission and suppressing dopamine oxidation. Thus, the study provides novel targets and a physiologically relevant screening platform for disease-modifying therapies of PD. PMID:22314364

  6. A natural compound macelignan protects midbrain dopaminergic neurons from inflammatory degeneration via microglial arginase-1 expression.

    PubMed

    Kiyofuji, Kana; Kurauchi, Yuki; Hisatsune, Akinori; Seki, Takahiro; Mishima, Satoshi; Katsuki, Hiroshi

    2015-08-01

    Inflammatory events involving activated microglia have been recognized to play an important role in pathogenesis of various neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson disease. Compounds regulating activation profiles of microglia may provide therapeutic benefits for Parkinson disease characterized by degeneration of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Here we examined the effect of macelignan, a compound derived from nutmeg, on inflammatory degeneration of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Treatment of midbrain slice cultures with interferon (IFN)-γ and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) caused a substantial decrease in viable dopaminergic neurons and an increase in nitric oxide (NO) production indicated by extracellular nitrite accumulation. Application of macelignan (10 μM) concomitantly with LPS prevented the loss of dopaminergic neurons. Besides nitrite accumulation, up-regulation of inducible NO synthase protein expression in response to IFN-γ/LPS was confirmed by Western blotting, and immunohistochemical examination revealed expression of inducible NO synthase in a subpopulation of Iba-1-poitive microglia. However, macelignan did not affect any of these NO-related parameters. On the other hand, macelignan promoted expression of arginase-1 in midbrain slice cultures irrespective of the presence or the absence of IFN-γ/LPS treatment. Arginase-1 expression was mainly localized in a subpopulation of Iba-1-positive cells. Importantly, the neuroprotective effect of macelignan was antagonized by N(ω)-hydroxy-nor-L-arginine, a specific arginase inhibitor. The neuroprotective effect of macelignan was also prevented by GW9662, a peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) antagonist. Overall, these results indicate that macelignan, a compound with PPARγ agonist activity, can provide neuroprotective effect on dopaminergic neurons in an arginase-dependent but NO-independent manner. PMID:25917324

  7. Retinoic acid receptor stimulation protects midbrain dopaminergic neurons from inflammatory degeneration via BDNF-mediated signaling.

    PubMed

    Katsuki, Hiroshi; Kurimoto, Emi; Takemori, Sachiko; Kurauchi, Yuki; Hisatsune, Akinori; Isohama, Yoichiro; Izumi, Yasuhiko; Kume, Toshiaki; Shudo, Koichi; Akaike, Akinori

    2009-07-01

    Functions of retinoic acid receptors (RARs) in adult CNS have been poorly characterized. Here we investigated potential neuroprotective action of tamibarotene (Am80), an RARalpha/beta agonist available for the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia, on midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Am80 protected dopaminergic neurons in rat midbrain slice culture from injury mediated by lipopolysaccharide-activated microglia, without affecting production of nitric oxide, a key mediator of cell injury. The effect of Am80 was mimicked by another RAR agonist, TAC-101, but not by a retinoid X receptor agonist, HX630, and HX630 did not synergize with Am80. We observed neuronal expression of RARalpha and RARbeta in midbrain slice culture and also found that Am80 increased tissue level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA. Exogenous BDNF prevented dopaminergic neurodegeneration, and the neuroprotective effect of Am80 was suppressed by a TrkB inhibitor, K252a, or by anti-BDNF neutralizing antibody. These results reveal a novel action of RARs mediated by enhancement of BDNF expression. Finally, oral administration of Am80 prevented dopaminergic cell loss in the substantia nigra induced by local injection of lipopolysaccharide in mice, indicating that RARs are a promising target of therapeutics for neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:19457078

  8. Induction of midbrain dopaminergic neurons from primate embryonic stem cells by coculture with sertoli cells.

    PubMed

    Yue, Fengming; Cui, Li; Johkura, Kohei; Ogiwara, Naoko; Sasaki, Katsunori

    2006-07-01

    The aim of this study was to produce dopaminergic neurons from primate embryonic stem (ES) cells following coculture with mouse Sertoli cells. After 3 weeks of induction, immunostaining revealed that 90% +/- 9% of the colonies contained tyrosine hydroxylase-positive (TH(+)) neurons, and 60% +/- 7% of the tubulin beta III-positive (Tuj III(+)) neurons were TH(+). Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analyses showed that Sertoli-induced neurons expressed midbrain dopaminergic neuron markers, including TH, dopamine transporter, aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (AADC), receptors such as TrkB and TrkC, and transcription factors NurrI and Lmx1b. Neurons that had been differentiated on Sertoli cells were positive for Pax2, En1, and AADC, midbrain-related markers, and negative for dopamine-beta-hydroxylase, a marker of noradrenergic neurons. These Sertoli cell-induced dopaminergic cells can release dopamine when depolarized by high K(+). Sertoli cell-conditioned medium contained glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and supported neuronal differentiation. After pretreatment with anti-GDNF antibody, the percentage of Tuj III(+) colonies was reduced to 14%. Thus, GDNF contributed significantly to inducing primate ES cells into dopaminergic neurons. When transplanted into a 6-hydroxydopamine-treated Parkinson's disease model, primate-derived dopaminergic neurons integrated into the mouse striatum. Two weeks after transplantation, surviving TH(+) cells were present. These TH(+) cells survived for 2 months. Therefore, the induction method of coculture ES cells with Sertoli cells provides an unlimited source of primate cells for the study of pathogenesis and transplantation in Parkinson's disease. PMID:16822882

  9. Differentiation and molecular heterogeneity of inhibitory and excitatory neurons associated with midbrain dopaminergic nuclei.

    PubMed

    Lahti, Laura; Haugas, Maarja; Tikker, Laura; Airavaara, Mikko; Voutilainen, Merja H; Anttila, Jenni; Kumar, Suman; Inkinen, Caisa; Salminen, Marjo; Partanen, Juha

    2016-02-01

    Local inhibitory GABAergic and excitatory glutamatergic neurons are important for midbrain dopaminergic and hindbrain serotonergic pathways controlling motivation, mood, and voluntary movements. Such neurons reside both within the dopaminergic nuclei, and in adjacent brain structures, including the rostromedial and laterodorsal tegmental nuclei. Compared with the monoaminergic neurons, the development, heterogeneity, and molecular characteristics of these regulatory neurons are poorly understood. We show here that different GABAergic and glutamatergic subgroups associated with the monoaminergic nuclei express specific transcription factors. These neurons share common origins in the ventrolateral rhombomere 1, where the postmitotic selector genes Tal1, Gata2 and Gata3 control the balance between the generation of inhibitory and excitatory neurons. In the absence of Tal1, or both Gata2 and Gata3, the GABAergic precursors adopt glutamatergic fates and populate the glutamatergic nuclei in excessive numbers. Together, our results uncover developmental regulatory mechanisms, molecular characteristics, and heterogeneity of central regulators of monoaminergic circuits. PMID:26718003

  10. Parkin controls dopamine utilization in human midbrain dopaminergic neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Houbo; Ren, Yong; Yuen, Eunice Y; Zhong, Ping; Ghaedi, Mahboobe; Hu, Zhixing; Azabdaftari, Gissou; Nakaso, Kazuhiro; Yan, Zhen; Feng, Jian

    2012-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is defined by the degeneration of nigral dopaminergic (DA) neurons and can be caused by monogenic mutations of genes such as parkin. The lack of phenotype in parkin knockout mice suggests that human nigral DA neurons have unique vulnerabilities. Here we generate induced pluripotent stem cells from normal subjects and PD patients with parkin mutations. We demonstrate that loss of parkin in human midbrain DA neurons greatly increases the transcription of monoamine oxidases and oxidative stress, significantly reduces DA uptake and increases spontaneous DA release. Lentiviral expression of parkin, but not its PD-linked mutant, rescues these phenotypes. The results suggest that parkin controls dopamine utilization in human midbrain DA neurons by enhancing the precision of DA neurotransmission and suppressing dopamine oxidation. Thus, the study provides novel targets and a physiologically relevant screening platform for disease-modifying therapies of PD. PMID:22314364

  11. Neurotensin Induces Presynaptic Depression of D2 Dopamine Autoreceptor-Mediated Neurotransmission in Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Piccart, Elisabeth; Courtney, Nicholas A.; Branch, Sarah Y.; Ford, Christopher P.

    2015-01-01

    Increased dopaminergic signaling is a hallmark of severe mesencephalic pathologies such as schizophrenia and psychostimulant abuse. Activity of midbrain dopaminergic neurons is under strict control of inhibitory D2 autoreceptors. Application of the modulatory peptide neurotensin (NT) to midbrain dopaminergic neurons transiently increases activity by decreasing D2 dopamine autoreceptor function, yet little is known about the mechanisms that underlie long-lasting effects. Here, we performed patch-clamp electrophysiology and fast-scan cyclic voltammetry in mouse brain slices to determine the effects of NT on dopamine autoreceptor-mediated neurotransmission. Application of the active peptide fragment NT8–13 produced synaptic depression that exhibited short- and long-term components. Sustained depression of D2 autoreceptor signaling required activation of the type 2 NT receptor and the protein phosphatase calcineurin. NT application increased paired-pulse ratios and decreased extracellular levels of somatodendritic dopamine, consistent with a decrease in presynaptic dopamine release. Surprisingly, we observed that electrically induced long-term depression of dopaminergic neurotransmission that we reported previously was also dependent on type 2 NT receptors and calcineurin. Because electrically induced depression, but not NT-induced depression, was blocked by postsynaptic calcium chelation, our findings suggest that endogenous NT may act through a local circuit to decrease presynaptic dopamine release. The current research provides a mechanism through which augmented NT release can produce a long-lasting increase in membrane excitability of midbrain dopamine neurons. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Whereas plasticity of glutamate synapses in the brain has been studied extensively, demonstrations of plasticity at dopaminergic synapses have been more elusive. By quantifying inhibitory neurotransmission between midbrain dopaminergic neurons in brain slices from mice we have

  12. Cocaine Increases Dopaminergic Neuron and Motor Activity via Midbrain α1 Adrenergic Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Goertz, Richard Brandon; Wanat, Matthew J; Gomez, Jorge A; Brown, Zeliene J; Phillips, Paul EM; Paladini, Carlos A

    2015-01-01

    Cocaine reinforcement is mediated by increased extracellular dopamine levels in the forebrain. This neurochemical effect was thought to require inhibition of dopamine reuptake, but cocaine is still reinforcing even in the absence of the dopamine transporter. Here, we demonstrate that the rapid elevation in dopamine levels and motor activity elicited by cocaine involves α1 receptor activation within the ventral midbrain. Activation of α1 receptors increases dopaminergic neuron burst firing by decreasing the calcium-activated potassium channel current (SK), as well as elevates dopaminergic neuron pacemaker firing through modulation of both SK and the hyperpolarization-activated cation currents (Ih). Furthermore, we found that cocaine increases both the pacemaker and burst-firing frequency of rat ventral-midbrain dopaminergic neurons through an α1 adrenergic receptor-dependent mechanism within the ventral tegmental area and substantia nigra pars compacta. These results demonstrate the mechanism underlying the critical role of α1 adrenergic receptors in the regulation of dopamine neurotransmission and behavior by cocaine. PMID:25374094

  13. Allopregnanolone enhances the neurogenesis of midbrain dopaminergic neurons in APPswe/PSEN1 mice.

    PubMed

    Zhang, P; Xie, M Q; Ding, Y-Q; Liao, M; Qi, S S; Chen, S X; Gu, Q Q; Zhou, P; Sun, C Y

    2015-04-01

    An earlier study has demonstrated that exogenous allopregnanolone (APα) can reverse the reduction of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) of 3-month-old male triple transgenic Alzheimer's disease mouse (3xTgAD). This paper is focused on further clarifying the origin of these new-born TH-positive neurons induced by exogenous APα treatment. We performed a deeper research in another AD mouse model, 4-month-old male APPswe/PSEN1 double transgenic AD mouse (2xTgAD) by measuring APα concentration and counting immunopositive neurons using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and unbiased stereology. It was found that endogenous APα level and the number of TH-positive neurons were reduced in the 2xTgAD mice, and these reductions were present prior to the appearance of β-amyloid (Aβ)-positive plaques. Furthermore, a single 20mg/kg of exogenous APα treatment prevented the decline of total neurons, TH-positive neurons and TH/bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) double-positive neurons in the SNpc of 2xTgAD mice although the decreased intensity of TH-positive fibers was not rescued in the striatum. It was also noted that exogenous APα administration had an apparent increase in the doublecortin (DCX)-positive neurons and DCX/BrdU double-positive neurons of subventricular zone (SVZ), as well as in the percentage of neuronal nuclear antigen (NeuN)/BrdU double-positive neurons of the SNpc in the 2xTgAD mice. These findings indicate that a lower level of endogenous APα is implicated in the loss of midbrain dopaminergic neurons in the 2xTgAD mice, and exogenous APα-induced a significant increase in the new-born dopaminergic neurons might be derived from the proliferating and differentiation of neural stem niche of SVZ. PMID:25637494

  14. Aquaporin-4 deficiency diminishes the differential degeneration of midbrain dopaminergic neurons in experimental Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ji; Yang, Beibei; Sun, Hongbin; Zhou, Yan; Liu, Mengdi; Ding, Jianhua; Fang, Feng; Fan, Yi; Hu, Gang

    2016-02-12

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is primarily due to the progressive, selective and irreversible loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). Interestingly, DA neurons in the ventral and lateral SN are much more susceptible than adjacent dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) not only in human PD but in many PD model systems. However, the molecular causes of regional vulnerability in PD remain unknown. In our previous studies, we established acute PD animal models by administration of MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine), and found that AQP4 knockout mice were significantly more prone to MPTP-induced neurotoxicity. Here, we further observe that AQP4 deficiency resulted in the same susceptible to MPTP between SN DA neuron and VTA neurons both in acute and chronic PD model. Moreover, we show that AQP4 deficiency increased the numbers of reactive astrocytes and microglias not only in the SN and but also in the VTA under basal and MPTP-induced situations. Meanwhile, AQP4 deficiency disrupted the balance of the pro-inflammatory cytokine/neurotrophin in midbrain. Taken together, these results demonstrate that glial AQP4 is involved in the susceptibility differences of DA neurons between SN and VTA, although the precise mechanism of AQP4 remains to be explored. Moreover, these findings also suggest that these susceptibility differences are not only due to intrinsic neuronal factors, but also attribute to differences in astrocytes of these regions. PMID:26748031

  15. Neuregulin-1 receptor tyrosine kinase ErbB4 is upregulated in midbrain dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Depboylu, Candan; Höllerhage, Matthias; Schnurrbusch, Stefan; Brundin, Patrik; Oertel, Wolfgang H; Schrattenholz, André; Höglinger, Günter U

    2012-12-01

    Previously we demonstrated that systemically administered neuregulin-1-β1, a nerve growth and differentiation factor, passed the blood-brain barrier and accumulated in brain areas with expression of its receptor ErbB4. In substantia nigra (SN), neuregulin-1-β1 phosphorylated ErbB4 and protected dopaminergic neurons in a toxin-based mouse model of Parkinson disease (PD). We studied ErbB4 in the context of human midbrain dopaminergic degeneration in vivo and in vitro. Post-mortem ventral midbrain tissue sections of neuropsychiatric healthy individuals and PD patients (matched for age, gender and post-mortem delay) were immunostained for ErbB4. Cultured Lund human mesencephalic (LUHMES) post-mitotic dopaminergic neurons were treated with dopaminergic toxins and analyzed for ErbB4 expression. In control individuals, 85.0±5.0% of dopaminergic neurons, containing cytoplasmic neuromelanin, expressed ErbB4 in the SN. In PD cases, the percentage of ErbB4-positive nigral dopaminergic neurons was increased to 94.9±2.5%. The mean ErbB4 immunoreactivity of melanized neurons was higher in PD than controls. LUHMES neurons upregulated ErbB4 when exposed to toxins 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium and 6-hydroxydopamine. Increased rate of ErbB4-positive dopaminergic neurons in PD may either reflect a better survival of ErbB4-positive neurons or an increased expression of ErbB4 by remaining neurons to seek trophic support. Enhanced ErbB4 expression in human in vitro toxin-based PD models supports the latter interpretation. Thus, dopaminergic neurons in SN might be susceptible to neuregulin-1 treatment in PD. PMID:23123776

  16. Midbrain-like Organoids from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Contain Functional Dopaminergic and Neuromelanin-Producing Neurons.

    PubMed

    Jo, Junghyun; Xiao, Yixin; Sun, Alfred Xuyang; Cukuroglu, Engin; Tran, Hoang-Dai; Göke, Jonathan; Tan, Zi Ying; Saw, Tzuen Yih; Tan, Cheng-Peow; Lokman, Hidayat; Lee, Younghwan; Kim, Donghoon; Ko, Han Seok; Kim, Seong-Oh; Park, Jae Hyeon; Cho, Nam-Joon; Hyde, Thomas M; Kleinman, Joel E; Shin, Joo Heon; Weinberger, Daniel R; Tan, Eng King; Je, Hyunsoo Shawn; Ng, Huck-Hui

    2016-08-01

    Recent advances in 3D culture systems have led to the generation of brain organoids that resemble different human brain regions; however, a 3D organoid model of the midbrain containing functional midbrain dopaminergic (mDA) neurons has not been reported. We developed a method to differentiate human pluripotent stem cells into a large multicellular organoid-like structure that contains distinct layers of neuronal cells expressing characteristic markers of human midbrain. Importantly, we detected electrically active and functionally mature mDA neurons and dopamine production in our 3D midbrain-like organoids (MLOs). In contrast to human mDA neurons generated using 2D methods or MLOs generated from mouse embryonic stem cells, our human MLOs produced neuromelanin-like granules that were structurally similar to those isolated from human substantia nigra tissues. Thus our MLOs bearing features of the human midbrain may provide a tractable in vitro system to study the human midbrain and its related diseases. PMID:27476966

  17. Lmx1a and Lmx1b regulate mitochondrial functions and survival of adult midbrain dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Doucet-Beaupré, Hélène; Gilbert, Catherine; Profes, Marcos Schaan; Chabrat, Audrey; Pacelli, Consiglia; Giguère, Nicolas; Rioux, Véronique; Charest, Julien; Deng, Qiaolin; Laguna, Ariadna; Ericson, Johan; Perlmann, Thomas; Ang, Siew-Lan; Cicchetti, Francesca; Parent, Martin; Trudeau, Louis-Eric; Lévesque, Martin

    2016-07-26

    The LIM-homeodomain transcription factors Lmx1a and Lmx1b play critical roles during the development of midbrain dopaminergic progenitors, but their functions in the adult brain remain poorly understood. We show here that sustained expression of Lmx1a and Lmx1b is required for the survival of adult midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Strikingly, inactivation of Lmx1a and Lmx1b recreates cellular features observed in Parkinson's disease. We found that Lmx1a/b control the expression of key genes involved in mitochondrial functions, and their ablation results in impaired respiratory chain activity, increased oxidative stress, and mitochondrial DNA damage. Lmx1a/b deficiency caused axonal pathology characterized by α-synuclein(+) inclusions, followed by a progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons. These results reveal the key role of these transcription factors beyond the early developmental stages and provide mechanistic links between mitochondrial dysfunctions, α-synuclein aggregation, and the survival of dopaminergic neurons. PMID:27407143

  18. Aldehyde Dehydrogenase 1a1 Mediates a GABA Synthesis Pathway in Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jae-Ick; Ganesan, Subhashree; Luo, Sarah X.; Wu, Yu-Wei; Park, Esther; Huang, Eric J.; Chen, Lu; Ding, Jun B.

    2016-01-01

    Midbrain dopamine neurons are an essential component of the basal ganglia circuitry, playing key roles in the control of fine movement and reward. Recently, it has been demonstrated that γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter, is co-released by dopamine neurons. Here we show that GABA corelease in dopamine neurons does not utilize the conventional GABA synthesizing enzymes, glutamate decarboxylases GAD65 and GAD67. Our experiments reveal an evolutionarily conserved GABA synthesis pathway mediated by aldehyde dehydrogenase 1a1 (ALDH1a1). Moreover, GABA co-release is modulated by ethanol at binge drinking blood alcohol concentrations and diminished ALDH1a1 leads to enhanced alcohol consumption and preference. These findings provide insights into the functional role of GABA co-release in midbrain dopamine neurons, which may be essential for reward-based behavior and addiction. PMID:26430123

  19. GDNF-Ret signaling in midbrain dopaminergic neurons and its implication for Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Edgar R; Liss, Birgit

    2015-12-21

    Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and its canonical receptor Ret can signal together or independently to fulfill many important functions in the midbrain dopaminergic (DA) system. While Ret signaling clearly impacts on the development, maintenance and regeneration of the mesostriatal DA system, the physiological functions of GDNF for the DA system are still unclear. Nevertheless, GDNF is still considered to be an excellent candidate to protect and/or regenerate the mesostriatal DA system in Parkinson disease (PD). Clinical trials with GDNF on PD patients are, however, so far inconclusive. Here, we review the current knowledge of GDNF and Ret signaling and function in the midbrain DA system, and their crosstalk with proteins and signaling pathways associated with PD. PMID:26555190

  20. Subchronic Polychlorinated Biphenyl (Aroclor 1254) Exposure Produces Oxidative Damage and Neuronal Death of Ventral Midbrain Dopaminergic Systems

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Donna W.; Notter, Sarah A.; Thiruchelvam, Mona; Dever, Daniel P.; Fitzpatrick, Richard; Kostyniak, Paul J.; Cory-Slechta, Deborah A.; Opanashuk, Lisa A.

    2012-01-01

    Recent epidemiologic studies have demonstrated a link between organochlorine and pesticide exposure to an enhanced risk for neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (PD). A common biological phenomenon underlying cell injury associated with both polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) exposure and dopaminergic neurodegeneration during aging is oxidative stress (OS). In this study, we tested the hypothesis that oral PCB exposure, via food ingestion, impairs dopamine systems in the adult murine brain. We determined whether PCB exposure was associated with OS in dopaminergic neurons, a population of cells that selectively degenerate in PD. After 4 weeks of oral exposure to the PCB mixture Aroclor 1254, several congeners, mostly ortho substituted, accumulated throughout the brain. Significant increases in locomotor activity were observed within 2 weeks, which persisted after cessation of PCB exposure. Stereologic analyses revealed a significant loss of dopaminergic neurons within the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area. However, striatal dopamine levels were elevated, suggesting that compensatory mechanisms exist to maintain dopamine homeostasis, which could contribute to the observed increases in locomotor activity following PCB exposure. Biochemical experiments revealed alterations in OS markers, including increases in SOD and HO-1 levels and the presence of oxidatively modified lipids and proteins. These findings were accompanied by elevated iron levels within the striatal and midbrain regions, perhaps due to the observed dysregulation of transferrin receptors and ferritin levels following PCB exposure. In this study, we suggest that both OS and the uncoupling of iron regulation contribute to dopamine neuron degeneration and hyperactivity following PCB exposure. PMID:22094459

  1. Nato3 integrates with the Shh-Foxa2 transcriptional network regulating the differentiation of midbrain dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Nissim-Eliraz, Einat; Zisman, Sophie; Schatz, Omri; Ben-Arie, Nissim

    2013-09-01

    Mesencephalic dopaminergic (mesDA) neurons originate from the floor plate of the midbrain, a transient embryonic organizing center located at the ventral-most midline. Since the loss of mesDA leads to Parkinson's disease, the molecular mechanisms controlling the genesis and differentiation of dopaminergic progenitors are extensively studied and the identification and characterization of new genes is of interest. Here, we show that the expression of the basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor Nato3 (Ferd3l) increases in parallel to the differentiation of SN4741 dopaminergic cells in vitro. Nato3 transcription is directly regulated by the transcription factor Foxa2, a target and effector of the Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling cascade. Moreover, pharmacological inhibition of Shh signaling downregulated the expression of Nato3, thus defining Nato3 as a novel component of one of the major pathways controlling cell patterning and generation of mesDA. Furthermore, we show that Nato3 regulated Shh and Foxa2 through a novel feed-backward loop. Up- and downregulation of Nato3 further affected the transcription of Nurr1, implicated in the genesis of mesDA, but not of TH. Taken together, these data shed new light on the transcriptional networks controlling the generation of mesDA and may be utilized in the efforts to direct stem cells towards a dopaminergic fate. PMID:23254923

  2. Vesicular expression and release of ATP from dopaminergic neurons of the mouse retina and midbrain

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Tracy; Jobling, Andrew I.; Greferath, Ursula; Chuang, Trinette; Ramesh, Archana; Fletcher, Erica L.; Vessey, Kirstan A.

    2015-01-01

    Vesicular nucleotide transporter (VNUT) is required for active accumulation of adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP) into vesicles for purinergic neurotransmission, however, the cell types that express VNUT in the central nervous system remain unknown. This study characterized VNUT expression within the mammalian retina and brain and assessed a possible functional role in purinergic signaling. Two native isoforms of VNUT were detected in mouse retina and brain based on RNA transcript and protein analysis. Using immunohistochemistry, VNUT was found to co-localize with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) positive, dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area, however, VNUT expression in extranigral non-DA neurons was also observed. In the retina, VNUT labeling was found to co-localize solely with TH-positive DA-cells. In the outer retina, VNUT-positive interplexiform cell processes were in close contact with horizontal cells and cone photoreceptor terminals, which are known to express P2 purinergic-receptors. In order to assess function, dissociated retinal neurons were loaded with fluorescent ATP markers (Quinacrine or Mant-ATP) and the DA marker FFN102, co-labeled with a VNUT antibody and imaged in real time. Fluorescent ATP markers and FFN102 puncta were found to co-localize in VNUT positive neurons and upon stimulation with high potassium, ATP marker fluorescence at the cell membrane was reduced. This response was blocked in the presence of cadmium. These data suggest DA neurons co-release ATP via calcium dependent exocytosis and in the retina this may modulate the visual response by activating purine receptors on closely associated neurons. PMID:26500494

  3. Vesicular expression and release of ATP from dopaminergic neurons of the mouse retina and midbrain.

    PubMed

    Ho, Tracy; Jobling, Andrew I; Greferath, Ursula; Chuang, Trinette; Ramesh, Archana; Fletcher, Erica L; Vessey, Kirstan A

    2015-01-01

    Vesicular nucleotide transporter (VNUT) is required for active accumulation of adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP) into vesicles for purinergic neurotransmission, however, the cell types that express VNUT in the central nervous system remain unknown. This study characterized VNUT expression within the mammalian retina and brain and assessed a possible functional role in purinergic signaling. Two native isoforms of VNUT were detected in mouse retina and brain based on RNA transcript and protein analysis. Using immunohistochemistry, VNUT was found to co-localize with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) positive, dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area, however, VNUT expression in extranigral non-DA neurons was also observed. In the retina, VNUT labeling was found to co-localize solely with TH-positive DA-cells. In the outer retina, VNUT-positive interplexiform cell processes were in close contact with horizontal cells and cone photoreceptor terminals, which are known to express P2 purinergic-receptors. In order to assess function, dissociated retinal neurons were loaded with fluorescent ATP markers (Quinacrine or Mant-ATP) and the DA marker FFN102, co-labeled with a VNUT antibody and imaged in real time. Fluorescent ATP markers and FFN102 puncta were found to co-localize in VNUT positive neurons and upon stimulation with high potassium, ATP marker fluorescence at the cell membrane was reduced. This response was blocked in the presence of cadmium. These data suggest DA neurons co-release ATP via calcium dependent exocytosis and in the retina this may modulate the visual response by activating purine receptors on closely associated neurons. PMID:26500494

  4. The Effects of Electrical and Optical Stimulation of Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons on Rat 50-kHz Ultrasonic Vocalizations

    PubMed Central

    Scardochio, Tina; Trujillo-Pisanty, Ivan; Conover, Kent; Shizgal, Peter; Clarke, Paul B. S.

    2015-01-01

    Rationale: Adult rats emit ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) at around 50-kHz; these commonly occur in contexts that putatively engender positive affect. While several reports indicate that dopaminergic (DAergic) transmission plays a role in the emission of 50-kHz calls, the pharmacological evidence is mixed. Different modes of dopamine (DA) release (i.e., tonic and phasic) could potentially explain this discrepancy. Objective: To investigate the potential role of phasic DA release in 50-kHz call emission. Methods: In Experiment 1, USVs were recorded in adult male rats following unexpected electrical stimulation of the medial forebrain bundle (MFB). In parallel, phasic DA release in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) was recorded using fast-scan cyclic voltammetry. In Experiment 2, USVs were recorded following response-contingent or non-contingent optogenetic stimulation of midbrain DAergic neurons. Four 20-s schedules of optogenetic stimulation were used: fixed-interval, fixed-time, variable-interval, and variable-time. Results: Brief electrical stimulation of the MFB increased both 50-kHz call rate and phasic DA release in the NAcc. During optogenetic stimulation sessions, rats initially called at a high rate comparable to that observed following reinforcers such as psychostimulants. Although optogenetic stimulation maintained reinforced responding throughout the 2-h session, the call rate declined to near zero within the first 30 min. The trill call subtype predominated following both electrical and optical stimulation. Conclusion: The occurrence of electrically-evoked 50-kHz calls, time-locked to phasic DA (Experiment 1), provides correlational evidence supporting a role for phasic DA in USV production. However, in Experiment 2, the temporal dissociation between calling and optogenetic stimulation of midbrain DAergic neurons suggests that phasic mesolimbic DA release is not sufficient to produce 50-kHz calls. The emission of the trill subtype of 50-kHz calls

  5. Defining midbrain dopaminergic neuron diversity by single-cell gene profiling

    PubMed Central

    Poulin, Jean-Francois; Zou, Jian; Drouin-Ouellet, Janelle; Kim, Kwang-Youn A; Cicchetti, Francesca; Awatramani, Rajeshwar B

    2014-01-01

    Effective approaches to neuropsychiatric disorders require detailed understanding of the cellular composition and circuitry of the complex mammalian brain. Here, we present a paradigm for deconstructing the diversity of neurons defined by a specific neurotransmitter, using a microfluidic dynamic array to simultaneously evaluate the expression of 96 genes in single neurons. With this approach, we successfully identified multiple molecularly distinct dopamine neuron subtypes, and localized them in the adult mouse brain. To validate the anatomical and functional correlates of molecular diversity, we provide evidence that one Vip+ subtype, located in the periaqueductal region, has a discrete projection field within the extended amygdala. Another Aldh1a1+ subtype, located in the substantia nigra, is especially vulnerable in the MPTP model of Parkinson’s disease. Overall, this rapid, cost-effective approach enables the identification and classification of multiple dopamine neuron subtypes, with distinct molecular, anatomical, and functional properties. PMID:25437550

  6. The {beta}-chemokines CCL2 and CCL7 are two novel differentiation factors for midbrain dopaminergic precursors and neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Edman, Linda C.; Mira, Helena; Arenas, Ernest

    2008-06-10

    {beta}-chemokines are secreted factors that regulate diverse functions in the adult brain, such as neuro-immune responses and neurotransmission, but their function in the developing brain is largely unknown. We recently found that the orphan nuclear receptor, Nurr1, up regulates CCL2 and CCL7 in neural stem cells, suggesting a possible function of {beta}-chemokines in midbrain development. Here we report that two {beta}-chemokines, CCL2 and CCL7, and two of their receptors, CCR1 and CCR2, are expressed and developmentally regulated in the ventral midbrain (VM). Moreover, we found that the expression of CCL7 was down regulated in the Nurr1 knockout mice, linking CCL7 to dopamine (DA) neuron development. When the function of CCL2 and CCL7 was examined, we found that they selectively enhanced the differentiation of Nurr1+ precursors into DA neurons, but not their survival or progenitor proliferation in primary precursor cultures. Moreover, both CCL2 and CCL7 promoted neuritogenesis in midbrain DA neuron cultures. Thus, our results show for the first time a function of {beta}-chemokines in the developing brain and identify {beta}-chemokines as novel class of pro-differentiation factors for midbrain DA neurons. These data also suggest that {beta}-chemokines may become useful tools to enhance the differentiation of DA cell preparations for cell replacement therapy and drug discovery in Parkinson's disease (PD)

  7. Depressive-like phenotype induced by AAV-mediated overexpression of human α-synuclein in midbrain dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Caudal, D; Alvarsson, A; Björklund, A; Svenningsson, P

    2015-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive loss of nigral dopaminergic neurons and by the presence of aggregates containing α-synuclein called Lewy bodies. Viral vector-induced overexpression of α-synuclein in dopaminergic neurons represents a model of PD which recapitulates disease progression better than commonly used neurotoxin models. Previous studies using this model have reported motor and cognitive impairments, whereas depression, mood and anxiety phenotypes are less described. To investigate these psychiatric phenotypes, Sprague-Dawley rats received bilateral injections of a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector expressing human α-synuclein or GFP into the substantia nigra pars compacta. Behavior was assessed at two timepoints: 3 and 8 weeks post-injection. We report that nigral α-synuclein overexpression led to a pronounced nigral dopaminergic cell loss accompanied by a smaller cell loss in the ventral tegmental area, and to a decreased striatal density of dopaminergic fibers. The AAV-α-synuclein group exhibited modest, but significant motor impairments 8 weeks after vector administration. The AAV-α-synuclein group displayed depressive-like behavior in the forced swim test after 3 weeks, and reduced sucrose preference at week 8. At both timepoints, overexpression of α-synuclein was linked to a hyperactive hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis regulation of corticosterone. The depressive-like phenotype was also correlated with decreased nigral brain-derived neurotrophic factor and spinophilin levels, and with decreased striatal levels of the activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein. This study demonstrates that AAV-mediated α-synuclein overexpression in dopamine neurons is not only useful to model motor impairments of PD, but also depression. This study also provides evidence that depression in experimental Parkinsonism is correlated to dysregulation of the HPA axis and to

  8. Protection of Primary Dopaminergic Midbrain Neurons by GPR139 Agonists Supports Different Mechanisms of MPP+ and Rotenone Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Bayer Andersen, Kirsten; Leander Johansen, Jens; Hentzer, Morten; Smith, Garrick Paul; Dietz, Gunnar P. H.

    2016-01-01

    The G-protein coupled receptor 139 (GPR139) is expressed specifically in the brain in areas of relevance for motor control. GPR139 function and signal transduction pathways are elusive, and results in the literature are even contradictory. Here, we examined the potential neuroprotective effect of GPR139 agonism in primary culture models of dopaminergic (DA) neuronal degeneration. We find that in vitro GPR139 agonists protected primary mesencephalic DA neurons against 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+)-mediated degeneration. Protection was concentration-dependent and could be blocked by a GPR139 antagonist. However, the protection of DA neurons was not found against rotenone or 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) mediated degeneration. Our results support differential mechanisms of toxicity for those substances commonly used in Parkinson’s disease (PD) models and potential for GPR139 agonists in neuroprotection. PMID:27445691

  9. Disrupted Functional Connectivity with Dopaminergic Midbrain in Cocaine Abusers

    SciTech Connect

    Tomasi, D.; Tomasi, D.; Volkow, N.D.; Wang, R.; Carrillo, J.; Maloney, T.; Alia-Klein, N.; Woicik, P.A.; Telang, F.; Goldstein, R.Z.

    2010-06-01

    Chronic cocaine use is associated with disrupted dopaminergic neurotransmission but how this disruption affects overall brain function (other than reward/motivation) is yet to be fully investigated. Here we test the hypothesis that cocaine addicted subjects will have disrupted functional connectivity between the midbrain (where dopamine neurons are located) and cortical and subcortical brain regions during the performance of a sustained attention task. We measured brain activation and functional connectivity with fMRI in 20 cocaine abusers and 20 matched controls. When compared to controls, cocaine abusers had lower positive functional connectivity of midbrain with thalamus, cerebellum, and rostral cingulate, and this was associated with decreased activation in thalamus and cerebellum and enhanced deactivation in rostral cingulate. These findings suggest that decreased functional connectivity of the midbrain interferes with the activation and deactivation signals associated with sustained attention in cocaine addicts.

  10. Selective expression of Parkinson's disease-related Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 G2019S missense mutation in midbrain dopaminergic neurons impairs dopamine release and dopaminergic gene expression.

    PubMed

    Liu, Guoxiang; Sgobio, Carmelo; Gu, Xinglong; Sun, Lixin; Lin, Xian; Yu, Jia; Parisiadou, Loukia; Xie, Chengsong; Sastry, Namratha; Ding, Jinhui; Lohr, Kelly M; Miller, Gary W; Mateo, Yolanda; Lovinger, David M; Cai, Huaibin

    2015-09-15

    Preferential dysfunction/degeneration of midbrain substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) dopaminergic (DA) neurons contributes to the main movement symptoms manifested in Parkinson's disease (PD). Although the Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) G2019S missense mutation (LRRK2 G2019S) is the most common causative genetic factor linked to PD, the effects of LRRK2 G2019S on the function and survival of SNpc DA neurons are poorly understood. Using a binary gene expression system, we generated transgenic mice expressing either wild-type human LRRK2 (WT mice) or the LRRK2 G2019S mutation (G2019S mice) selectively in the midbrain DA neurons. Here we show that overexpression of LRRK2 G2019S did not induce overt motor abnormalities or substantial SNpc DA neuron loss. However, the LRRK2 G2019S mutation impaired dopamine homeostasis and release in aged mice. This reduction in dopamine content/release coincided with the degeneration of DA axon terminals and decreased expression of DA neuron-enriched genes tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), vesicular monoamine transporter 2, dopamine transporter and aldehyde dehydrogenase 1. These factors are responsible for dopamine synthesis, transport and degradation, and their expression is regulated by transcription factor paired-like homeodomain 3 (PITX3). Levels of Pitx3 mRNA and protein were similarly decreased in the SNpc DA neurons of aged G2019S mice. Together, these findings suggest that PITX3-dependent transcription regulation could be one of the many potential mechanisms by which LRRK2 G2019S acts in SNpc DA neurons, resulting in downregulation of its downstream target genes critical for dopamine homeostasis and release. PMID:26123485

  11. Dopaminergic neurons promote hippocampal reactivation and spatial memory persistence

    PubMed Central

    McNamara, Colin G; Tejero-Cantero, Álvaro; Trouche, Stéphanie; Campo-Urriza, Natalia; Dupret, David

    2014-01-01

    Here we found that optogenetic burst stimulation of hippocampal dopaminergic fibers from midbrain neurons in mice exploring novel environments enhanced the reactivation of pyramidal cell assemblies during subsequent sleep/rest. When applied during spatial learning of new goal locations, dopaminergic photostimulation improved the later recall of neural representations of space and stabilized memory performance. These findings reveal that midbrain dopaminergic neurons promote hippocampal network dynamics associated with memory persistence. PMID:25326690

  12. The role of growth/differentiation factor 5 (GDF5) in the induction and survival of midbrain dopaminergic neurones: relevance to Parkinson's disease treatment.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, Aideen M; O'Keeffe, Gerard W

    2005-09-01

    Growth/differentiation factor-5 (GDF5) is a member of the transforming growth factor-beta superfamily which has potent effects on dopaminergic neurones in vitro and in vivo. GDF5 is under investigation as a potential therapeutic agent for Parkinson's disease (PD), which is caused by the progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurones projecting from the substantia nigra (SN) to the striatum. In the rat ventral mesencephalon (VM; the developing SN), GDF5 expression peaks at embryonic day 14, the time at which dopaminergic neurones undergo terminal differentiation. Addition of GDF5 protein to cultures of embryonic rat VM increases the survival and improves the morphology of dopaminergic neurones in these cultures. GDF5 treatment also increases the number of cells which adopt a dopaminergic phenotype in cultures of VM progenitor cells. Intracerebral administration of GDF5 has potent neuroprotective and restorative effects on the nigrostriatal pathway in animal models of PD. Furthermore, addition of GDF5 protein to embryonic rat dopaminergic neuronal transplants improves their survival and function in a rat model of PD. Thus, GDF5 has potential applications to PD therapy as a dopaminergic neuroprotective agent and as a factor that may induce a dopaminergic neuronal fate in unrestricted progenitor cells. PMID:16185246

  13. Cell type-specific gene expression of midbrain dopaminergic neurons reveals molecules involved in their vulnerability and protection

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Chee Yeun; Seo, Hyemyung; Sonntag, Kai Christian; Brooks, Andrew; Lin, Ling; Isacson, Ole

    2008-01-01

    Molecular differences between dopamine (DA) neurons may explain why the mesostriatal DA neurons in the A9 region preferentially degenerate in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and toxic models, whereas the adjacent A10 region mesolimbic and mesocortical DA neurons are relatively spared. To characterize innate physiological differences between A9 and A10 DA neurons, we determined gene expression profiles in these neurons in the adult mouse by laser capture microdissection, microarray analysis and real-time PCR. We found 42 genes relatively elevated in A9 DA neurons, whereas 61 genes were elevated in A10 DA neurons [>2-fold; false discovery rate (FDR) <1%]. Genes of interest for further functional analysis were selected by criteria of (i) fold differences in gene expression, (ii) real-time PCR validation and (iii) potential roles in neurotoxic or protective biochemical pathways. Three A9-elevated molecules [G-protein coupled inwardly rectifying K channel 2 (GIRK2), adenine nucleotide translocator 2 (ANT-2) and the growth factor IGF-1] and three A10-elevated peptides (GRP, CGRP and PACAP) were further examined in both α-synuclein overexpressing PC12 (PC12-αSyn) cells and rat primary ventral mesencephalic (VM) cultures exposed to MPP+ neurotoxicity. GIRK2-positive DA neurons were more vulnerable to MPP+ toxicity and overexpression of GIRK2 increased the vulnerability of PC12-αSyn cells to the toxin. Blocking of ANT decreased vulnerability to MPP+ in both cell culture systems. Exposing cells to IGF-1, GRP and PACAP decreased vulnerability of both cell types to MPP+, whereas CGRP protected PC12-αSyn cells but not primary VM DA neurons. These results indicate that certain differentially expressed molecules in A9 and A10 DA neurons may play key roles in their relative vulnerability to toxins and PD. PMID:15888489

  14. Perinatal Exposure to Neuregulin-1 Results in Disinhibition of Adult Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons: Implication in Schizophrenia Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Namba, Hisaaki; Okubo, Takeshi; Nawa, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-01

    Aberrant neuregulin-1 (NRG1) signals are suggested to associate with the neuropathophysiology of schizophrenia. Employing a mouse schizophrenia model established by neonatal neuregulin-1 challenge, we analysed postpubertal consequence of the NRG1 pretreatment for the electrophysiological property of nigral dopamine neurons. In vivo single unit recordings from anaesthetized NRG1-pretreated mice revealed increased spike bursting of nigral dopamine neurons. In slice preparations from NRG1-pretreated mice, spontaneous firing was elevated relative to controls. The relative increase in firing rates was abolished by a GABAA receptor antagonist. Whole-cell recording showed that perinatal NRG1 pretreatment diminished inhibitory miniature synaptic currents as well as GABAA receptor sensitivity. These results collectively suggest that perinatal exposure to neuregulin-1 results in the disinhibition of nigral dopamine neurons to influence their firing properties at the adult stage when the behavioral deficits are evident. PMID:26935991

  15. Fast transmission from the dopaminergic ventral midbrain to the sensory cortex of awake primates.

    PubMed

    Mylius, Judith; Happel, Max F K; Gorkin, Alexander G; Huang, Ying; Scheich, Henning; Brosch, Michael

    2015-11-01

    Motivated by the increasing evidence that auditory cortex is under control of dopaminergic cell structures of the ventral midbrain, we studied how the ventral tegmental area and substantia nigra affect neuronal activity in auditory cortex. We electrically stimulated 567 deep brain sites in total within and in the vicinity of the two dopaminergic ventral midbrain structures and at the same time, recorded local field potentials and neuronal discharges in cortex. In experiments conducted on three awake macaque monkeys, we found that electrical stimulation of the dopaminergic ventral midbrain resulted in short-latency (~35 ms) phasic activations in all cortical layers of auditory cortex. We were also able to demonstrate similar activations in secondary somatosensory cortex and superior temporal polysensory cortex. The electrically evoked responses in these parts of sensory cortex were similar to those previously described for prefrontal cortex. Moreover, these phasic responses could be reversibly altered by the dopamine D1-receptor antagonist SCH23390 for several tens of minutes. Thus, we speculate that the dopaminergic ventral midbrain exerts a temporally precise, phasic influence on sensory cortex using fast-acting non-dopaminergic transmitters and that their effects are modulated by dopamine on a longer timescale. Our findings suggest that some of the information carried by the neuronal discharges in the dopaminergic ventral midbrain, such as the motivational value or the motivational salience, is transmitted to auditory cortex and other parts of sensory cortex. The mesocortical pathway may thus contribute to the representation of non-auditory events in the auditory cortex and to its associative functions. PMID:25084746

  16. The Dopaminergic Midbrain Encodes the Expected Certainty about Desired Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Schwartenbeck, Philipp; FitzGerald, Thomas H. B.; Mathys, Christoph; Dolan, Ray; Friston, Karl

    2015-01-01

    Dopamine plays a key role in learning; however, its exact function in decision making and choice remains unclear. Recently, we proposed a generic model based on active (Bayesian) inference wherein dopamine encodes the precision of beliefs about optimal policies. Put simply, dopamine discharges reflect the confidence that a chosen policy will lead to desired outcomes. We designed a novel task to test this hypothesis, where subjects played a “limited offer” game in a functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment. Subjects had to decide how long to wait for a high offer before accepting a low offer, with the risk of losing everything if they waited too long. Bayesian model comparison showed that behavior strongly supported active inference, based on surprise minimization, over classical utility maximization schemes. Furthermore, midbrain activity, encompassing dopamine projection neurons, was accurately predicted by trial-by-trial variations in model-based estimates of precision. Our findings demonstrate that human subjects infer both optimal policies and the precision of those inferences, and thus support the notion that humans perform hierarchical probabilistic Bayesian inference. In other words, subjects have to infer both what they should do as well as how confident they are in their choices, where confidence may be encoded by dopaminergic firing. PMID:25056572

  17. Histamine impairs midbrain dopaminergic development in vivo by activating histamine type 1 receptors

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Histamine (HA) regulates the sleep-wake cycle, synaptic plasticity and memory in adult mammals. Dopaminergic specification in the embryonic ventral midbrain (VM) coincides with increased HA brain levels. To study the effect of HA receptor stimulation on dopamine neuron generation, we administered HA to dopamine progenitors, both in vitro and in vivo. Results Cultured embryonic day 12 (E12) VM neural stem/progenitor cells expressed transcripts for HA receptors H1R, H2R and H3R. These undifferentiated progenitors increased intracellular calcium upon HA addition. In HA-treated cultures, dopamine neurons significantly decreased after activation of H1R. We performed intrauterine injections in the developing VM to investigate HA effects in vivo. HA administration to E12 rat embryos notably reduced VM Tyrosine Hydroxylase (TH) staining 2 days later, without affecting GABA neurons in the midbrain, or serotonin neurons in the mid-hindbrain boundary. qRT-PCR and Western blot analyses confirmed that several markers important for the generation and maintenance of dopaminergic lineage such as TH, Lmx1a and Lmx1b were significantly diminished. To identify the cell type susceptible to HA action, we injected embryos of different developmental stages, and found that neural progenitors (E10 and E12) were responsive, whereas differentiated dopaminergic neurons (E14 and E16) were not susceptible to HA actions. Proliferation was significantly diminished, whereas neuronal death was not increased in the VM after HA administration. We injected H1R or H2R antagonists to identify the receptor responsible for the detrimental effect of HA on dopaminergic lineage and found that activation of H1R was required. Conclusion These results reveal a novel action of HA affecting dopaminergic lineage during VM development. PMID:25112718

  18. Androgen Decreases Dopamine Neurone Survival in Rat Midbrain

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, M. L.; Day, A. E.; Ho, C. C.; Walker, Q. D.; Francis, R.; Kuhn, C. M.

    2011-01-01

    Clinical studies show that men are more likely to develop disorders affecting midbrain dopaminergic pathways, such as drug addiction and Parkinson’s disease (PD). Although a great deal of focus has been given to the role of oestrogen in the maintenance of midbrain dopaminergic pathways, little is known about how testosterone influences these pathways. In the present study, we used stereological analysis of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-IR) cell bodies to determine how testosterone influences the dopaminergic cell bodies of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA). Rats and mice were castrated at post-natal day (PN) 60, and these midbrain cell populations were counted on PN 90. One month after castration, TH-IR cell number had increased in the SNpc and VTA of rats and mice. Replacement with testosterone or the non-aromatisable analogue dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in castrated animals reduced TH-IR cell number in the SNpc and VTA in rats. In mice, the decrease of TH-IR cell number with testosterone or DHT replacement was observed only in the SNpc. The apparent increase in TH-IR neurone number after castration is not explained by an increase in TH expression because the number of nondopaminergic cells (TH-immunonegative, TH-IN) did not decrease proportionally after castration. TH-IN cell number did not change after castration or hormone replacement in rat or mouse SNpc or VTA. These findings suggest that testosterone may play a suppressive role in midbrain dopaminergic pathways. PMID:20136692

  19. Intracellular Nogo-A facilitates initiation of neurite formation in mouse midbrain neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Kurowska, Z; Brundin, P; Schwab, M E; Li, J-Y

    2014-01-01

    Nogo-A is a transmembrane protein originally discovered in myelin, produced by postnatal CNS oligodendrocytes. Nogo-A induces growth cone collapse and inhibition of axonal growth in the injured adult CNS. In the intact CNS, Nogo-A functions as a negative regulator of growth and plasticity. Nogo-A is also expressed by certain neurons. Neuronal Nogo-A depresses long-term potentiation in the hippocampus and modulates neurite adhesion and fasciculation during development in mice. Here we show that Nogo-A is present in neurons derived from human midbrain (Lund human mesencephalic (LUHMES) cell line), as well as in embryonic and postnatal mouse midbrain (dopaminergic) neurons. In LUHMES cells, Nogo-A was upregulated threefold upon differentiation and neurite extension. Nogo-A was localized intracellularly in differentiated LUHMES cells. Cultured midbrain (dopaminergic) neurons from Nogo-A knock-out mice exhibited decreased numbers of neurites and branches when compared with neurons from wild-type (WT) mice. However, this phenotype was not observed when the cultures from WT mice were treated with an antibody neutralizing plasma membrane Nogo-A. In vivo, neither the regeneration of nigrostriatal tyrosine hydroxylase fibers, nor the survival of nigral dopaminergic neurons after partial 6-hydroxydopamine lesions was affected by Nogo-A deletion. These results indicate that during maturation of cultured midbrain (dopaminergic) neurons, intracellular Nogo-A supports neurite growth initiation and branch formation. PMID:24157929

  20. Physiological Characterisation of Human iPS-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro Fernandes, Hugo J.; Vowles, Jane; James, William S.; Cowley, Sally A.; Wade-Martins, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) offer the potential to study otherwise inaccessible cell types. Critical to this is the directed differentiation of hiPSCs into functional cell lineages. This is of particular relevance to research into neurological disease, such as Parkinson’s disease (PD), in which midbrain dopaminergic neurons degenerate during disease progression but are unobtainable until post-mortem. Here we report a detailed study into the physiological maturation over time of human dopaminergic neurons in vitro. We first generated and differentiated hiPSC lines into midbrain dopaminergic neurons and performed a comprehensive characterisation to confirm dopaminergic functionality by demonstrating dopamine synthesis, release, and re-uptake. The neuronal cultures include cells positive for both tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and G protein-activated inward rectifier potassium channel 2 (Kir3.2, henceforth referred to as GIRK2), representative of the A9 population of substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) neurons vulnerable in PD. We observed for the first time the maturation of the slow autonomous pace-making (<10 Hz) and spontaneous synaptic activity typical of mature SNc dopaminergic neurons using a combination of calcium imaging and electrophysiology. hiPSC-derived neurons exhibited inositol tri-phosphate (IP3) receptor-dependent release of intracellular calcium from the endoplasmic reticulum in neuronal processes as calcium waves propagating from apical and distal dendrites, and in the soma. Finally, neurons were susceptible to the dopamine neuron-specific toxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) which reduced mitochondrial membrane potential and altered mitochondrial morphology. Mature hiPSC-derived dopaminergic neurons provide a neurophysiologically-defined model of previously inaccessible vulnerable SNc dopaminergic neurons to bridge the gap between clinical PD and animal models. PMID:24586273

  1. Physiological characterisation of human iPS-derived dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Hartfield, Elizabeth M; Yamasaki-Mann, Michiko; Ribeiro Fernandes, Hugo J; Vowles, Jane; James, William S; Cowley, Sally A; Wade-Martins, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) offer the potential to study otherwise inaccessible cell types. Critical to this is the directed differentiation of hiPSCs into functional cell lineages. This is of particular relevance to research into neurological disease, such as Parkinson's disease (PD), in which midbrain dopaminergic neurons degenerate during disease progression but are unobtainable until post-mortem. Here we report a detailed study into the physiological maturation over time of human dopaminergic neurons in vitro. We first generated and differentiated hiPSC lines into midbrain dopaminergic neurons and performed a comprehensive characterisation to confirm dopaminergic functionality by demonstrating dopamine synthesis, release, and re-uptake. The neuronal cultures include cells positive for both tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and G protein-activated inward rectifier potassium channel 2 (Kir3.2, henceforth referred to as GIRK2), representative of the A9 population of substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) neurons vulnerable in PD. We observed for the first time the maturation of the slow autonomous pace-making (<10 Hz) and spontaneous synaptic activity typical of mature SNc dopaminergic neurons using a combination of calcium imaging and electrophysiology. hiPSC-derived neurons exhibited inositol tri-phosphate (IP3) receptor-dependent release of intracellular calcium from the endoplasmic reticulum in neuronal processes as calcium waves propagating from apical and distal dendrites, and in the soma. Finally, neurons were susceptible to the dopamine neuron-specific toxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) which reduced mitochondrial membrane potential and altered mitochondrial morphology. Mature hiPSC-derived dopaminergic neurons provide a neurophysiologically-defined model of previously inaccessible vulnerable SNc dopaminergic neurons to bridge the gap between clinical PD and animal models. PMID:24586273

  2. Transcriptional regulation by nicotine in dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Henley, Beverley M.; Williams, Brian A.; Srinivasan, Rahul; Cohen, Bruce N.; Xiao, Cheng; Mackey, Elisha D.W.; Wold, Barbara J.; Lester, Henry A.

    2013-01-01

    Dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) degenerate in Parkinson’s disease. These neurons robustly express several nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtypes. Smoking appears to be neuroprotective for Parkinson’s disease but the mechanism is unknown. To determine whether chronic nicotine-induced changes in gene expression contribute to the neuroprotective effects of smoking, we develop methods to measure the effect of prolonged nicotine exposure on the SNc neuronal transcriptome in an unbiased manner. Twenty neurons were collected using laser-capture microscopy and transcriptional changes were assessed using RNA deep sequencing. These results are the first whole-transcriptome analyses of chronic nicotine treatment in SNc neurons. Overall, 129 genes were significantly regulated: 67 upregulated, 62 downregulated. Nicotine-induced relief of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress has been postulated as a potential mechanism for the neuroprotective effects of smoking. Chronic nicotine did not significantly affect the expression of ER stress-related genes, nor of dopamine-related or nAChR genes, but it did modulate expression of 129 genes that could be relevant to the neuroprotective effects of smoking, including genes involved in (1) the ubiquitin–proteasome pathway, (2) cell cycle regulation, (3) chromatin modification, and (4) DNA binding and RNA regulation. We also report preliminary transcriptome data for single-cell dopaminergic and GABAergic neurons isolated from midbrain cultures. These novel techniques will facilitate advances in understanding the mechanisms taking place at the cellular level and may have applications elsewhere in the fields of neuroscience and molecular biology. The results give an emerging picture of the role of nicotine on the SNc and on dopaminergic neurons. PMID:23939186

  3. Glucocorticoid receptor expression and sub-cellular localization in dopamine neurons of the rat midbrain.

    PubMed

    Hensleigh, E; Pritchard, L M

    2013-11-27

    Stress plays an important role in the development of addiction. Animals subjected to stress exhibit sensitized responses to psychostimulant drugs, and this sensitized response is associated with functional adaptations of the mesolimbic dopamine system. These adaptations likely arise from direct or indirect effects of glucocorticoids on dopaminergic neurons. Though glucocorticoid receptor expression in midbrain dopaminergic neurons has been examined in previous studies, results have been somewhat equivocal. We sought to clarify this issue by analyzing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR) co-localization in the rat midbrain by dual fluorescence immunohistochemistry. We also examined sub-cellular localization of the GR in rat midbrain neurons after acute restraint stress. Adult Long-Evans rats were sacrificed 0, 30, 60 or 120min after 30min of restraint stress. A control group did not undergo restraint. Blood samples were collected immediately before and after restraint for measurement of plasma corticosterone by enzyme immunoassay. Glucocorticoid receptors were observed in dopaminergic neurons in both the substantia nigra (SN) and ventral tegmental area (VTA). The degree of co-localization of TH and GR did not differ between the VTA and the SN. All animals subjected to stress exhibited significant increases in plasma corticosterone. Significant translocation of GR signal to cell nuclei was observed after restraint in the SN, but not in the VTA. These results suggest that stress-induced glucocorticoid secretion could trigger functional changes in the mesolimbic dopamine system by direct activation of glucocorticoid receptors in dopaminergic neurons. PMID:24121048

  4. Increased Fos Expression Among Midbrain Dopaminergic Cell Groups during Birdsong Tutoring

    PubMed Central

    Nordeen, E.J.; Holtzman, D.A.; Nordeen, K.W.

    2009-01-01

    During avian vocal learning, birds memorize conspecific song patterns and then use auditory feedback to match their vocal output to this acquired template. Some models of song learning posit that during tutoring, conspecific visual, social, and/or auditory cues activate neuromodulatory systems that encourage acquisition of the tutor’s song and attach incentive value to that specific acoustic pattern. This hypothesis predicts that stimuli experienced during social tutoring activate cell populations capable of signaling reward. Using immunocytochemistry for the protein product of the immediate early gene c-Fos, we found that brief exposure of juvenile male zebra finches to a live familiar male tutor increased the density of Fos+ cells within two brain regions implicated in reward processing; the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). This activation of Fos appears to involve both dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic VTA/SNc neurons. Intriguingly, a familiar tutor was more effective than a novel tutor in stimulating Fos expression within these regions. In the periaqueductal gray (PAG), a dopamine-enriched cell population that has been implicated in emotional processing, Fos labeling also was increased after tutoring, with a familiar tutor once again being more effective than a novel conspecific. Since several neural regions implicated in song acquisition receive strong dopaminergic projections from these midbrain nuclei, their activation in conjunction with hearing the tutor’s song could help establish sensory representations that later guide motor sequence learning. PMID:19686474

  5. Representation of spontaneous movement by dopaminergic neurons is cell-type selective and disrupted in parkinsonism.

    PubMed

    Dodson, Paul D; Dreyer, Jakob K; Jennings, Katie A; Syed, Emilie C J; Wade-Martins, Richard; Cragg, Stephanie J; Bolam, J Paul; Magill, Peter J

    2016-04-12

    Midbrain dopaminergic neurons are essential for appropriate voluntary movement, as epitomized by the cardinal motor impairments arising in Parkinson's disease. Understanding the basis of such motor control requires understanding how the firing of different types of dopaminergic neuron relates to movement and how this activity is deciphered in target structures such as the striatum. By recording and labeling individual neurons in behaving mice, we show that the representation of brief spontaneous movements in the firing of identified midbrain dopaminergic neurons is cell-type selective. Most dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc), but not in ventral tegmental area or substantia nigra pars lateralis, consistently represented the onset of spontaneous movements with a pause in their firing. Computational modeling revealed that the movement-related firing of these dopaminergic neurons can manifest as rapid and robust fluctuations in striatal dopamine concentration and receptor activity. The exact nature of the movement-related signaling in the striatum depended on the type of dopaminergic neuron providing inputs, the striatal region innervated, and the type of dopamine receptor expressed by striatal neurons. Importantly, in aged mice harboring a genetic burden relevant for human Parkinson's disease, the precise movement-related firing of SNc dopaminergic neurons and the resultant striatal dopamine signaling were lost. These data show that distinct dopaminergic cell types differentially encode spontaneous movement and elucidate how dysregulation of their firing in early Parkinsonism can impair their effector circuits. PMID:27001837

  6. Sex-specific disruption of murine midbrain astrocytic and dopaminergic developmental trajectories following antenatal GC treatment.

    PubMed

    McArthur, Simon; Pienaar, Ilse S; Siddiqi, Sindhu M; Gillies, Glenda E

    2016-06-01

    The mammalian midbrain dopaminergic systems arising in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) are critical for coping behaviours and are implicated in neuropsychiatric disorders where early life challenges comprise significant risk factors. Here, we aimed to advance our hypothesis that glucocorticoids (GCs), recognised key players in neurobiological programming, target development within these systems, with a novel focus on the astrocytic population. Mice received antenatal GC treatment (AGT) by including the synthetic GC, dexamethasone, in the mothers' drinking water on gestational days 16-19; controls received normal drinking water. Analyses of regional shapes and volumes of the adult SNc and VTA demonstrated that AGT induced long-term, dose-dependent, structural changes that were accompanied by profound effects on astrocytes (doubling/tripling of numbers and/or density). Additionally, AGT induced long-term changes in the population size and distribution of SNc/VTA dopaminergic neurons, confirming and extending our previous observations made in rats. Furthermore, glial/neuronal structural remodelling was sexually dimorphic and depended on the AGT dose and sub-region of the SNc/VTA. Investigations within the neonatal brain revealed that these long-term organisational effects of AGT depend, at least in part, on targeting perinatal processes that determine astrocyte density and programmed cell death in dopaminergic neurons. Collectively, our characterisation of enduring, AGT-induced, sex-specific cytoarchitectural disturbances suggests novel mechanistic links for the strong association between early environmental challenge (inappropriate exposure to excess GCs) and vulnerability to developing aberrant behaviours in later life, with translational implications for dopamine-associated disorders (such as schizophrenia, ADHD, autism, depression), which typically show a sex bias. PMID:25944572

  7. The fat mass and obesity associated gene (Fto) regulates activity of the dopaminergic midbrain circuitry.

    PubMed

    Hess, Martin E; Hess, Simon; Meyer, Kate D; Verhagen, Linda A W; Koch, Linda; Brönneke, Hella S; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Jordan, Sabine D; Saletore, Yogesh; Elemento, Olivier; Belgardt, Bengt F; Franz, Thomas; Horvath, Tamas L; Rüther, Ulrich; Jaffrey, Samie R; Kloppenburg, Peter; Brüning, Jens C

    2013-08-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) signaling governs the control of complex behaviors, and its deregulation has been implicated in a wide range of diseases. Here we demonstrate that inactivation of the Fto gene, encoding a nucleic acid demethylase, impairs dopamine receptor type 2 (D2R) and type 3 (D3R) (collectively, 'D2-like receptor')-dependent control of neuronal activity and behavioral responses. Conventional and DA neuron-specific Fto knockout mice show attenuated activation of G protein-coupled inwardly-rectifying potassium (GIRK) channel conductance by cocaine and quinpirole. Impaired D2-like receptor-mediated autoinhibition results in attenuated quinpirole-mediated reduction of locomotion and an enhanced sensitivity to the locomotor- and reward-stimulatory actions of cocaine. Analysis of global N(6)-methyladenosine (m(6)A) modification of mRNAs using methylated RNA immunoprecipitation coupled with next-generation sequencing in the midbrain and striatum of Fto-deficient mice revealed increased adenosine methylation in a subset of mRNAs important for neuronal signaling, including many in the DA signaling pathway. Several proteins encoded by these mRNAs had altered expression levels. Collectively, FTO regulates the demethylation of specific mRNAs in vivo, and this activity relates to the control of DA transmission. PMID:23817550

  8. Endocannabinoid Signaling in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons: More than Physiology?

    PubMed Central

    Melis, M; Pistis, P

    2007-01-01

    Different classes of neurons in the CNS utilize endogenous cannabinoids as retrograde messengers to shape afferent activity in a short- and long-lasting fashion. Transient suppression of excitation and inhibition as well as long-term depression or potentiation in many brain regions require endocannabinoids to be released by the postsynaptic neurons and activate presynaptic CB1 receptors. Memory consolidation and/or extinction and habit forming have been suggested as the potential behavioral consequences of endocannabinoid-mediated synaptic modulation. However, endocannabinoids have a dual role: beyond a physiological modulation of synaptic functions, they have been demonstrated to participate in the mechanisms of neuronal protection under circumstances involving excessive excitatory drive, glutamate excitotoxicity, hypoxia-ischemia, which are key features of several neurodegenerative disorders. In this framework, the recent discovery that the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoyl-glycerol is released by midbrain dopaminergic neurons, under both physiological synaptic activity to modulate afferent inputs and pathological conditions such as ischemia, is particularly interesting for the possible implication of these molecules in brain functions and dysfunctions. Since dopamine dysfunctions underlie diverse neuropsychiatric disorders including schizophrenia, psychoses, and drug addiction, the importance of better understanding the correlation between an unbalanced endocannabinoid signal and the dopamine system is even greater. Additionally, we will review the evidence of the involvement of the endocannabinoid system in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease, where neuroprotective actions of cannabinoid-acting compounds may prove beneficial. The modulation of the endocannabinoid system by pharmacological agents is a valuable target in protection of dopamine neurons against functional abnormalities as well as against their neurodegeneration. PMID:19305743

  9. Making a mes: A transcription factor-microRNA pair governs the size of the midbrain and the dopaminergic progenitor pool

    PubMed Central

    Anderegg, Angela; Awatramani, Rajeshwar

    2015-01-01

    Canonical Wnt signaling is critical for midbrain dopaminergic progenitor specification, proliferation, and neurogenesis. Yet mechanisms that control Wnt signaling remain to be fully elucidated. Wnt1 is a key ligand in the embryonic midbrain, and directs proliferation, survival, specification and neurogenesis. In a recent study, we reveal that the transcription factor Lmx1b promotes Wnt1/Wnt signaling, and dopaminergic progenitor expansion, consistent with earlier studies. Additionally, Lmx1b drives expression of a non-coding RNA called Rmst, which harbors miR135a2 in its last intron. miR135a2 in turn targets Lmx1b as well as several Wnt pathway targets. Conditional overexpression of miR135a2 in the midbrain, particularly during an early time, results in a decreased dopaminergic progenitor pool, and less dopaminergic neurons, consistent with decreased Wnt signaling. We propose a model in which Lmx1b and miR135a2 influence levels of Wnt1 and Wnt signaling, and expansion of the dopaminergic progenitor pool. Further loss of function experiments and biochemical validation of targets will be critical to verify this model. Wnt agonists have recently been utilized for programming stem cells toward a dopaminergic fate in vitro, highlighting the importance of agents that modulate the Wnt pathway.

  10. Mitochondrial complex I inhibition is not required for dopaminergic neuron death induced by rotenone, MPP+, or paraquat

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Won-Seok; Kruse, Shane E.; Palmiter, Richard D.; Xia, Zhengui

    2008-01-01

    Inhibition of mitochondrial complex I is one of the leading hypotheses for dopaminergic neuron death associated with Parkinson's disease (PD). To test this hypothesis genetically, we used a mouse strain lacking functional Ndufs4, a gene encoding a subunit required for complete assembly and function of complex I. Deletion of the Ndufs4 gene abolished complex I activity in midbrain mesencephalic neurons cultured from embryonic day (E) 14 mice, but did not affect the survival of dopaminergic neurons in culture. Although dopaminergic neurons were more sensitive than other neurons in these cultures to cell death induced by rotenone, MPP+, or paraquat treatments, the absence of complex I activity did not protect the dopaminergic neurons, as would be expected if these compounds act by inhibiting complex 1. In fact, the dopaminergic neurons were more sensitive to rotenone. These data suggest that dopaminergic neuron death induced by treatment with rotenone, MPP+, or paraquat is independent of complex I inhibition. PMID:18812510

  11. Primary Culture of Mouse Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gaven, Florence; Marin, Philippe; Claeysen, Sylvie

    2014-01-01

    Dopaminergic neurons represent less than 1% of the total number of neurons in the brain. This low amount of neurons regulates important brain functions such as motor control, motivation, and working memory. Nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons selectively degenerate in Parkinson's disease (PD). This progressive neuronal loss is unequivocally associated with the motors symptoms of the pathology (bradykinesia, resting tremor, and muscular rigidity). The main agent responsible of dopaminergic neuron degeneration is still unknown. However, these neurons appear to be extremely vulnerable in diverse conditions. Primary cultures constitute one of the most relevant models to investigate properties and characteristics of dopaminergic neurons. These cultures can be submitted to various stress agents that mimic PD pathology and to neuroprotective compounds in order to stop or slow down neuronal degeneration. The numerous transgenic mouse models of PD that have been generated during the last decade further increased the interest of researchers for dopaminergic neuron cultures. Here, the video protocol focuses on the delicate dissection of embryonic mouse brains. Precise excision of ventral mesencephalon is crucial to obtain neuronal cultures sufficiently rich in dopaminergic cells to allow subsequent studies. This protocol can be realized with embryonic transgenic mice and is suitable for immunofluorescence staining, quantitative PCR, second messenger quantification, or neuronal death/survival assessment. PMID:25226064

  12. The lifelong maintenance of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons by Nurr1 and engrailed

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Specific vulnerability and degeneration of the dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta of the midbrain is the pathological hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. A number of transcription factors regulate the birth and development of this set of neurons and some remain constitutively expressed throughout life. These maintenance transcription factors are closely associated with essential neurophysiological functions and are required ultimately for the long-term survival of the midbrain dopaminergic neurons. The current review describes the role of two such factors, Nurr1 and engrailed, in differentiation, maturation, and in normal physiological functions including acquisition of neurotransmitter identity. The review will also elucidate the relationship of these factors with life, vulnerability, degeneration and death of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons in the context of Parkinson’s disease. PMID:24685177

  13. Differences in Number of Midbrain Dopamine Neurons Associated with Summer and Winter Photoperiods in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Aumann, Tim D.; Raabus, Mai; Tomas, Doris; Prijanto, Agustinus; Churilov, Leonid; Spitzer, Nicholas C.; Horne, Malcolm K.

    2016-01-01

    Recent evidence indicates the number of dopaminergic neurons in the adult rodent hypothalamus and midbrain is regulated by environmental cues, including photoperiod, and that this occurs via up- or down-regulation of expression of genes and proteins that are important for dopamine (DA) synthesis in extant neurons (‘DA neurotransmitter switching’). If the same occurs in humans, it may have implications for neurological symptoms associated with DA imbalances. Here we tested whether there are differences in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH, the rate-limiting enzyme in DA synthesis) and DA transporter (DAT) immunoreactive neurons in the midbrain of people who died in summer (long-day photoperiod, n = 5) versus winter (short-day photoperiod, n = 5). TH and DAT immunoreactivity in neurons and their processes was qualitatively higher in summer compared with winter. The density of TH immunopositive (TH+) neurons was significantly (~6-fold) higher whereas the density of TH immunonegative (TH-) neurons was significantly (~2.5-fold) lower in summer compared with winter. The density of total neurons (TH+ and TH- combined) was not different. The density of DAT+ neurons was ~2-fold higher whereas the density of DAT- neurons was ~2-fold lower in summer compared with winter, although these differences were not statistically significant. In contrast, midbrain nuclear volume, the density of supposed glia (small TH- cells), and the amount of TUNEL staining were the same in summer compared with winter. This study provides the first evidence of an association between environmental stimuli (photoperiod) and the number of midbrain DA neurons in humans, and suggests DA neurotransmitter switching underlies this association. PMID:27428306

  14. Pitx3 is required for development of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Nunes, Irene; Tovmasian, Lucy T.; Silva, Robert M.; Burke, Robert E.; Goff, Stephen P.

    2003-01-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) neurons of substantia nigra in the midbrain control voluntary movement, and their degeneration is the cause of Parkinson's disease. The complete set of genes required to specifically determine the development of midbrain DA subgroups is not known yet. We report here that mice lacking the bicoid-related homeoprotein Pitx3 fail to develop DA neurons of the substantia nigra. Other mesencephalic DA neurons of the ventral tegmental area and retrorubral field are unaltered in their dopamine expression and histological organization. These data suggest that Pitx3-dependent gene expression is specifically required for the differentiation of DA progenitors within the mesencephalic DA system. PMID:12655058

  15. [Impact of opiates on dopaminergic neurons].

    PubMed

    Kaufling, Jennifer; Freund-Mercier, Marie-José; Barrot, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Since the work of Johnson and North, it is known that opiates increase the activity of dopaminergic neurons by a GABA neuron-mediated desinhibition. This model should however be updated based on recent advances. Thus, the neuroanatomical location of the GABA neurons responsible for this desinhibition has been recently detailed: they belong to a brain structure in continuity with the posterior part of the ventral tegmental area and discovered this past decade. Other data also highlighted the critical role played by glutamatergic transmission in the opioid regulation of dopaminergic neuron activity. During protracted opiate withdrawal, the inhibitory/excitatory balance exerted on dopaminergic neurons is altered. These results are now leading to propose an original hypothesis for explaining the impact of protracted opiate withdrawal on mood. PMID:27406773

  16. Inputs to the Midbrain Dopaminergic Complex in the Rat with Emphasis on Extended Amygdala-recipient Sectors

    PubMed Central

    Zahm, Daniel S.; Cheng, Anita Y.; Lee, Tristan J.; Ghobadi, Comeron W.; Schwartz, Zachary M.; Geisler, Stefanie; Parsely, Kenneth P.; Gruber, Clemens; Veh, Ruediger W.

    2011-01-01

    The midbrain dopaminergic neuronal groups A8, A9, A10 and A10dc occupy, respectively, the retrorubral field (RRF), substantia nigra compacta (SNc), ventral tegmental area (VTA) and ventrolateral periaqueductal gray (PAGvl). Collectively, these structures give rise to a mixed dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic projection system that essentially permits adaptive behavior. Yet, knowledge is incomplete regarding how the afferents of these structures are organized. While the VTA is known to get numerous afferents from cortex, basal forebrain and brainstem and the SNc is widely perceived as receiving inputs mainly from the striatum, the afferents of the RRF and PAGvl have yet to be addressed comprehensively. This study was done to provide an account of those connections and seek a better understanding of how afferents might contribute to the functional interrelatedness of the VTA, SNc, RRF and PAGvl. Ventral midbrain structures received injections of retrograde tracer and resulting retrogradely labeled structures were targeted with injections of anterogradely transported Phaseolus vulgaris-leucoagglutinin. While all injections of retrograde tracer into the VTA, SNc, RRF or PAGvl produced labeling in many of a long list of structures extending from the cortex to caudal brainstem, pronounced labeling of structures comprising the central division of the extended amygdala occurred following injections that involved the RRF and PAGvl. The anterograde tracing supported this finding and, interestingly, the combination of retrograde and anterograde labeling data also confirmed reports from other groups indicating that the SNc receives robust input from many of the same structures that innervate the VTA, RRF and PAGvl. PMID:21618227

  17. Role of neuropilin-2 in the ipsilateral growth of midbrain dopaminergic axons.

    PubMed

    Torigoe, Makio; Yamauchi, Kenta; Tamada, Atsushi; Matsuda, Ikuo; Aiba, Atsu; Castellani, Valérie; Murakami, Fujio

    2013-05-01

    Axonal projections in the CNS can be categorized as either crossed or uncrossed. Crossing and uncrossing of axons has been explained by attractive and repulsive molecules like Netrin-1 and Slits, which are secreted by midline structures. However, uncrossed projections can be established even in double knockout mice of slit1 and slit2 or of roundabout1 (robo1) and robo2, two receptors for Slits. Here, we found that a novel mechanism mediated by Neuropilin-2 (Nrp2) contributes to the formation of uncrossed projections of midbrain dopaminergic neurons (mDANs). Nrp2 transcriptional activities were detected in a subset of mDANs, and its protein was expressed in mDAN axons growing through the ipsilateral diencephalon. In nrp2(lac) (Z) (/lac) (Z) mice, mDAN axons aberrantly grew toward the ventral midline and even crossed it, suggesting that Nrp2 is necessary for the development of mDAN ipsilateral projections. We investigated the involvement of Semaphorin 3B (Sema3B) and Sema3F, two ligands of Nrp2, by analysing mDAN axon trajectories in single or double knockout mice. In both cases, mDAN axons still projected ipsilaterally, suggesting the involvement mechanisms independent of these Sema3s. Nrp2-deficient mDAN axons retained their responsiveness to Slit2, demonstrating that aberrant mDAN axons in nrp2(lac) (Z) (/lac) (Z) mice were not indirectly mediated by alterations in Slit/Robo signaling. Taken together, our results indicate that a novel mechanism mediated by Nrp2 contributes to the establishment of uncrossed projections by mDAN axons. PMID:23534961

  18. Activin A Protects Midbrain Neurons in the 6-Hydroxydopamine Mouse Model of Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Li, Kong M.; Vissel, Bryce

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a chronic neurodegenerative disease characterized by a significant loss of dopaminergic neurons within the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and a subsequent loss of dopamine (DA) within the striatum. Despite advances in the development of pharmacological therapies that are effective at alleviating the symptoms of PD, the search for therapeutic treatments that halt or slow the underlying nigral degeneration remains a particular challenge. Activin A, a member of the transforming growth factor β superfamily, has been shown to play a role in the neuroprotection of midbrain neurons against 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) in vitro, suggesting that activin A may offer similar neuroprotective effects in in vivo models of PD. Using robust stereological methods, we found that intrastriatal injections of 6-OHDA results in a significant loss of both TH positive and NeuN positive populations in the SNpc at 1, 2, and 3 weeks post-lesioning in drug naïve mice. Exogenous application of activin A for 7 days, beginning the day prior to 6-OHDA administration, resulted in a significant survival of both dopaminergic and total neuron numbers in the SNpc against 6-OHDA-induced toxicity. However, we found no corresponding protection of striatal DA or dopamine transporter (DAT) expression levels in animals receiving activin A compared to vehicle controls. These results provide the first evidence that activin A exerts potent neuroprotection in a mouse model of PD, however this neuroprotection may be localized to the midbrain. PMID:25902062

  19. Antenatal Glucocorticoid Treatment Induces Adaptations in Adult Midbrain Dopamine Neurons, which Underpin Sexually Dimorphic Behavioral Resilience

    PubMed Central

    Virdee, Kanwar; McArthur, Simon; Brischoux, Frédéric; Caprioli, Daniele; Ungless, Mark A; Robbins, Trevor W; Dalley, Jeffrey W; Gillies, Glenda E

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrated previously that antenatal glucocorticoid treatment (AGT, gestational days 16–19) altered the size and organization of the adult rat midbrain dopaminergic (DA) populations. Here we investigated the consequences of these AGT-induced cytoarchitectural disturbances on indices of DA function in adult rats. We show that in adulthood, enrichment of striatal DA fiber density paralleled AGT-induced increases in the numbers of midbrain DA neurons, which retained normal basal electrophysiological properties. This was co-incident with changes in (i) striatal D2-type receptor levels (increased, both sexes); (ii) D1-type receptor levels (males decreased; females increased); (iii) DA transporter levels (males increased; females decreased) in striatal regions; and (iv) amphetamine-induced mesolimbic DA release (males increased; females decreased). However, despite these profound, sexually dimorphic changes in markers of DA neurotransmission, in-utero glucocorticoid overexposure had a modest or no effect on a range of conditioned and unconditioned appetitive behaviors known to depend on mesolimbic DA activity. These findings provide empirical evidence for enduring AGT-induced adaptive mechanisms within the midbrain DA circuitry, which preserve some, but not all, functions, thereby casting further light on the vulnerability of these systems to environmental perturbations. Furthermore, they demonstrate these effects are achieved by different, often opponent, adaptive mechanisms in males and females, with translational implications for sex biases commonly found in midbrain DA-associated disorders. PMID:23929547

  20. Reward and choice encoding in terminals of midbrain dopamine neurons depends on striatal target.

    PubMed

    Parker, Nathan F; Cameron, Courtney M; Taliaferro, Joshua P; Lee, Junuk; Choi, Jung Yoon; Davidson, Thomas J; Daw, Nathaniel D; Witten, Ilana B

    2016-06-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the midbrain provide rich topographic innervation of the striatum and are central to learning and to generating actions. Despite the importance of this DA innervation, it remains unclear whether and how DA neurons are specialized on the basis of the location of their striatal target. Thus, we sought to compare the function of subpopulations of DA neurons that target distinct striatal subregions in the context of an instrumental reversal learning task. We identified key differences in the encoding of reward and choice in dopamine terminals in dorsal versus ventral striatum: DA terminals in ventral striatum responded more strongly to reward consumption and reward-predicting cues, whereas DA terminals in dorsomedial striatum responded more strongly to contralateral choices. In both cases the terminals encoded a reward prediction error. Our results suggest that the DA modulation of the striatum is spatially organized to support the specialized function of the targeted subregion. PMID:27110917

  1. α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on dopaminergic neurons mediate nicotine reward and anxiety relief.

    PubMed

    McGranahan, Tresa M; Patzlaff, Natalie E; Grady, Sharon R; Heinemann, Stephen F; Booker, T K

    2011-07-27

    Nicotine is the primary psychoactive substance in tobacco, and it exerts its effects by interaction with various subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain. One of the major subtypes expressed in brain, the α4β2-nAChR, endogenously modulates neuronal excitability and thereby, modifies certain normal as well as nicotine-induced behaviors. Although α4-containing nAChRs are widely expressed across the brain, a major focus has been on their roles within midbrain dopaminergic regions involved in drug addiction, mental illness, and movement control in humans. We developed a unique model system to examine the role of α4-nAChRs within dopaminergic neurons by a targeted genetic deletion of the α4 subunit from dopaminergic neurons in mice. The loss α4 mRNA and α4β2-nAChRs from dopaminergic neurons was confirmed, as well as selective loss of α4β2-nAChR function from dopaminergic but not GABAergic neurons. Two behaviors central to nicotine dependence, reward and anxiety relief, were examined. α4-nAChRs specifically on dopaminergic neurons were demonstrated to be necessary for nicotine reward as measured by nicotine place preference, but not for another drug of addiction, cocaine. α4-nAChRs are necessary for the anxiolytic effects of nicotine in the elevated plus maze, and elimination of α4β2-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons decreased sensitivity to the anxiolytic effects of nicotine. Deletion of α4-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons also increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced locomotor depression; however, nicotine-induced hypothermia was unaffected. This is the first work to develop a dopaminergic specific deletion of a nAChR subunit and examine resulting changes in nicotine-related behaviors. PMID:21795541

  2. alpha4beta2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on dopaminergic neurons mediate nicotine reward and anxiety relief

    PubMed Central

    McGranahan, Tresa M.; Patzlaff, Natalie E.; Grady, Sharon R.; Heinemann, Stephen F.; Booker, T.K.

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine is the primary psychoactive substance in tobacco and it exerts its effects by interaction with various subtypes of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the brain. One of the major subtypes expressed in brain, the alpha4beta2-nAChR, endogenously modulates neuronal excitability and thereby, modifies certain normal, as well as nicotine-induced, behaviors. Although alpha4-containing nAChRs are widely expressed across the brain, a major focus has been on their roles within midbrain dopaminergic regions involved in drug addition, mental illness and movement control in humans. We developed a unique model system to examine the role of alpha4-nAChRs within dopaminergic neurons by a targeted genetic deletion of the alpha4 subunit from dopaminergic neurons in mice. The loss alpha4 mRNA and alpha4beta2-nAChRs from dopaminergic neurons was confirmed, as well as selective loss of alpha4beta2-nAChR function from dopaminergic but not GABAergic neurons. Two behaviors central to nicotine dependence, reward and anxiety relief, were examined. Alpha4-nAChRs specifically on dopaminergic neurons were demonstrated to be necessary for nicotine reward as measured by nicotine place preference, but not for another drug of addiction, cocaine. Alpha4-nAChRs are necessary for the anxiolytic effects of nicotine in the elevated plus maze and elimination of alpha4-beta2-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons decreased sensitivity to the anxiolytic effects of nicotine. Deletion of alpha4-nAChRs specifically from dopaminergic neurons also increased sensitivity to nicotine-induced locomotor depression, however nicotine-induced hypothermia was unaffected. This is the first work to develop a dopaminergic specific deletion of a nAChR subunit and examine resulting changes in nicotine behaviors. PMID:21795541

  3. Purity and Enrichment of Laser-Microdissected Midbrain Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Amanda L.; Day, Trevor A.; Dayas, Christopher V.; Smith, Doug W.

    2013-01-01

    The ability to microdissect individual cells from the nervous system has enormous potential, as it can allow for the study of gene expression in phenotypically identified cells. However, if the resultant gene expression profiles are to be accurately ascribed, it is necessary to determine the extent of contamination by nontarget cells in the microdissected sample. Here, we show that midbrain dopamine neurons can be laser-microdissected to a high degree of enrichment and purity. The average enrichment for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) gene expression in the microdissected sample relative to midbrain sections was approximately 200-fold. For the dopamine transporter (DAT) and the vesicular monoamine transporter type 2 (Vmat2), average enrichments were approximately 100- and 60-fold, respectively. Glutamic acid decarboxylase (Gad65) expression, a marker for GABAergic neurons, was several hundredfold lower than dopamine neuron-specific genes. Glial cell and glutamatergic neuron gene expression were not detected in microdissected samples. Additionally, SN and VTA dopamine neurons had significantly different expression levels of dopamine neuron-specific genes, which likely reflects functional differences between the two cell groups. This study demonstrates that it is possible to laser-microdissect dopamine neurons to a high degree of cell purity. Therefore gene expression profiles can be precisely attributed to the targeted microdissected cells. PMID:23984404

  4. White noise improves learning by modulating activity in dopaminergic midbrain regions and right superior temporal sulcus.

    PubMed

    Rausch, Vanessa H; Bauch, Eva M; Bunzeck, Nico

    2014-07-01

    In neural systems, information processing can be facilitated by adding an optimal level of white noise. Although this phenomenon, the so-called stochastic resonance, has traditionally been linked with perception, recent evidence indicates that white noise may also exert positive effects on cognitive functions, such as learning and memory. The underlying neural mechanisms, however, remain unclear. Here, on the basis of recent theories, we tested the hypothesis that auditory white noise, when presented during the encoding of scene images, enhances subsequent recognition memory performance and modulates activity within the dopaminergic midbrain (i.e., substantia nigra/ventral tegmental area, SN/VTA). Indeed, in a behavioral experiment, we can show in healthy humans that auditory white noise-but not control sounds, such as a sinus tone-slightly improves recognition memory. In an fMRI experiment, white noise selectively enhances stimulus-driven phasic activity in the SN/VTA and auditory cortex. Moreover, it induces stronger connectivity between SN/VTA and right STS, which, in addition, exhibited a positive correlation with subsequent memory improvement by white noise. Our results suggest that the beneficial effects of auditory white noise on learning depend on dopaminergic neuromodulation and enhanced connectivity between midbrain regions and the STS-a key player in attention modulation. Moreover, they indicate that white noise could be particularly useful to facilitate learning in conditions where changes of the mesolimbic system are causally related to memory deficits including healthy and pathological aging. PMID:24345178

  5. The Dopaminergic Midbrain Mediates an Effect of Average Reward on Pavlovian Vigor.

    PubMed

    Rigoli, Francesco; Chew, Benjamin; Dayan, Peter; Dolan, Raymond J

    2016-09-01

    Dopamine plays a key role in motivation. Phasic dopamine response reflects a reinforcement prediction error (RPE), whereas tonic dopamine activity is postulated to represent an average reward that mediates motivational vigor. However, it has been hard to find evidence concerning the neural encoding of average reward that is uncorrupted by influences of RPEs. We circumvented this difficulty in a novel visual search task where we measured participants' button pressing vigor in a context where information (underlying an RPE) about future average reward was provided well before the average reward itself. Despite no instrumental consequence, participants' pressing force increased for greater current average reward, consistent with a form of Pavlovian effect on motivational vigor. We recorded participants' brain activity during task performance with fMRI. Greater average reward was associated with enhanced activity in dopaminergic midbrain to a degree that correlated with the relationship between average reward and pressing vigor. Interestingly, an opposite pattern was observed in subgenual cingulate cortex, a region implicated in negative mood and motivational inhibition. These findings highlight a crucial role for dopaminergic midbrain in representing aspects of average reward and motivational vigor. PMID:27082045

  6. How to make a mesodiencephalic dopaminergic neuron.

    PubMed

    Smidt, Marten P; Burbach, J Peter H

    2007-01-01

    Dopaminergic neurons located in the ventral mesodiencephalon are essential for the control of voluntary movement and the regulation of emotion, and are severely affected in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease. Recent advances in molecular biology and mouse genetics have helped to unravel the mechanisms involved in the development of mesodiencephalic dopaminergic (mdDA) neurons, including their specification, migration and differentiation, as well as the processes that govern axonal pathfinding and their specific patterns of connectivity and maintenance. Here, we follow the developmental path of these neurons with the goal of generating a molecular code that could be exploited in cell-replacement strategies to treat diseases such as Parkinson's disease. PMID:17180160

  7. The atypical homeoprotein Pbx1a participates in the axonal pathfinding of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The pre B-cell leukemia transcription factor 1 (Pbx1) genes belong to the three amino acid loop extension family of homeodomain proteins that form hetero-oligomeric complexes with other homeodomain transcription factors, thereby modulating target specificity, DNA binding affinity and transcriptional activity of their molecular associates. Results Here, we provide evidence that Pbx1 is expressed in mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons from embryonic day 11 into adulthood and determines some of the cellular properties of this neuronal population. In Pbx1-deficient mice, the mesencephalic dopaminergic axons stall during mid-gestation at the border between di- and telencephalon before entering the ganglionic eminence, leading to a loose organization of the axonal bundle and partial misrouting. In Pbx1-deficient dopaminergic neurons, the high affinity netrin-1 receptor, deleted in colon cancer (DCC), is down-regulated. Interestingly, we found several conserved Pbx1 binding sites in the first intron of DCC, suggesting a direct regulation of DCC transcription by Pbx1. Conclusions The expression of Pbx1 in dopaminergic neurons and its regulation of DCC expression make it an important player in defining the axonal guidance of the midbrain dopaminergic neurons, with possible implications for the normal physiology of the nigro-striatal system as well as processes related to the degeneration of neurons during the course of Parkinson’s disease. PMID:22748019

  8. Non-dopaminergic neurons in ventral mesencephalic transplants make widespread axonal connections in the host brain.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Lachlan H; Kirik, Deniz; Björklund, Anders

    2008-09-01

    Motor dysfunction in Parkinson's disease (PD) can be effectively alleviated through intra-striatal transplantation of fetal ventral mesencephalic tissue. The success of this approach is dependent on the survival, axonal outgrowth and synaptic integration of newly grafted dopamine neurons with the host striatum. The functional outcome of transplantation therapy has, however, been highly variable, particularly in PD patients, but also in animal models of PD, and thus there is a need for a deeper understanding of possible mechanisms underlying this variability such as graft composition and the resulting graft-host connectivity. Here we describe a series of transplantation experiments whereby mouse VM tissue has been grafted into the striatum of 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned rats. Six weeks after grafting immunohistochemical analysis using the mouse specific 'M2M6' antibodies revealed both dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic components of graft-derived fibre outgrowth into the host brain. We report here that while dopaminergic outgrowth was predominately confined to the striatum, there was also a significant degree of non-dopaminergic outgrowth to extra-striatal structures including the thalamus, cortex and midbrain. Retrograde tracing experiments showed that grafted neurons of GABAergic identity contribute to this non-dopaminergic outgrowth. In line with our recent findings on the function of serotonergic neurons in fetal VM grafts, these results further underscore the potential impact that non-dopaminergic neurons may have on the functional outcome of intrastriatal fetal VM grafts. PMID:18602916

  9. Human neuromelanin: an endogenous microglial activator for dopaminergic neuron death

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Wei; Zecca, Luigi; Wilson, Belinda; Ren, RW; Wang, Yong-jun; Wang, Xiao-min; Hong, Jau-Shyong

    2013-01-01

    Substantial evidence indicates that neuroinflammation caused by over-activation of microglial in the substantia nigra is critical in the pathogenesis of dopaminergic neurodegeneration in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Increasing data demonstrates that environmental factors such as rotenone, paraquat play pivotal roles in the death of dopaminergic neurons. Here, potential role and mechanism of neuromelanin (NM), a major endogenous component in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra, on microglial activation and associated dopaminergic neurotoxicity were investigated. Using multiple well-established primary mesencephalic cultures, we tested whether human NM (HNM) could activate microglia, thereby provoking dopaminergic neurodegeneration. The results demonstrated that in primary mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures, HNM caused dopaminergic neuronal damage characterized by the decreased dopamine uptake and reduced numbers and shorted dendrites of dopaminergic neurons. HNM-induced degeneration was relatively selective to dopaminergic neurons since the other types of neurons determined by either gamma-aminobutyric acid uptake and total neuronal numbers after staining showed smaller decrease. We demonstrated that HNM produced modest dopaminergic neurotoxicity in neuron-enriched cultures; in contrast, much greater neurotoxicity was observed in the presence of microglia. HNM-induced microglial activation was shown by morphological changes and production of proinflammatory and neurotoxic factors. These results suggest that HNM, once released from damaged dopaminergic neurons, can be an potent endogenous activator involved in the reactivation of microglia, which may mediate disease progression. Thus, inhibition of reactive microglia can be a useful strategy for PD therapy. PMID:23276965

  10. Parkin protects dopaminergic neurons from excessive Wnt/{beta}-catenin signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Rawal, Nina; Corti, Olga; Sacchetti, Paola; Ardilla-Osorio, Hector; Sehat, Bita; Brice, Alexis; Arenas, Ernest

    2009-10-23

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is caused by degeneration of the dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the substantia nigra but the molecular mechanisms underlying the degenerative process remain elusive. Several reports suggest that cell cycle deregulation in post-mitotic neurons could lead to neuronal cell death. We now show that Parkin, an E3 ubiquitin ligase linked to familial PD, regulates {beta}-catenin protein levels in vivo. Stabilization of {beta}-catenin in differentiated primary ventral midbrain neurons results in increased levels of cyclin E and proliferation, followed by increased levels of cleaved PARP and loss of DA neurons. Wnt3a signaling also causes death of post-mitotic DA neurons in parkin null animals, suggesting that both increased stabilization and decreased degradation of {beta}-catenin results in DA cell death. These findings demonstrate a novel regulation of Wnt signaling by Parkin and suggest that Parkin protects DA neurons against excessive Wnt signaling and {beta}-catenin-induced cell death.

  11. FolR1: a novel cell surface marker for isolating midbrain dopamine neural progenitors and nascent dopamine neurons.

    PubMed

    Gennet, Nicole; Tamburini, Claudia; Nan, Xinsheng; Li, Meng

    2016-01-01

    Cell type-specific surface markers offer a powerful tool for purifying defined cell types for restorative therapies and drug screenings. Midbrain dopaminergic neurons (mesDA) are the nerve cells preferentially lost in the brains of Parkinson's disease patients. Clinical trials of transplantation of fetal neural precursors suggest that cell therapy may offer a cure for this devastating neurological disease. Many lines of preclinical studies demonstrate that neural progenitors committed to dopaminergic fate survive and integrate better than postmitotic DA neurons. We show that the folate-receptor 1 (FolR1), a GPI-anchored cell surface molecule, specifically marks mesDA neural progenitors and immature mesDA neurons. FolR1 expression superimposes with Lmx1a, a bona-fide mesDA lineage marker, during the active phase of mesDA neurogenesis from E9.5 to E14.5 during mouse development, as well as in ESC-derived mesDA lineage. FolR1(+) neural progenitors can be isolated by FACS or magnetic sorting (MAC) which give rise to dopamine neurons expressing TH and Pitx3, whilst FolR1 negative cells generate non-dopaminergic neurons and glia cells. This study identifies FolR1 as a new cell surface marker selectively expressed in mesDA progenitors in vivo and in vitro and that can be used to enrich in vitro differentiated TH neurons. PMID:27580818

  12. FolR1: a novel cell surface marker for isolating midbrain dopamine neural progenitors and nascent dopamine neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gennet, Nicole; Tamburini, Claudia; Nan, Xinsheng; Li, Meng

    2016-01-01

    Cell type-specific surface markers offer a powerful tool for purifying defined cell types for restorative therapies and drug screenings. Midbrain dopaminergic neurons (mesDA) are the nerve cells preferentially lost in the brains of Parkinson’s disease patients. Clinical trials of transplantation of fetal neural precursors suggest that cell therapy may offer a cure for this devastating neurological disease. Many lines of preclinical studies demonstrate that neural progenitors committed to dopaminergic fate survive and integrate better than postmitotic DA neurons. We show that the folate-receptor 1 (FolR1), a GPI-anchored cell surface molecule, specifically marks mesDA neural progenitors and immature mesDA neurons. FolR1 expression superimposes with Lmx1a, a bona-fide mesDA lineage marker, during the active phase of mesDA neurogenesis from E9.5 to E14.5 during mouse development, as well as in ESC-derived mesDA lineage. FolR1+ neural progenitors can be isolated by FACS or magnetic sorting (MAC) which give rise to dopamine neurons expressing TH and Pitx3, whilst FolR1 negative cells generate non-dopaminergic neurons and glia cells. This study identifies FolR1 as a new cell surface marker selectively expressed in mesDA progenitors in vivo and in vitro and that can be used to enrich in vitro differentiated TH neurons. PMID:27580818

  13. Glutamate neurons are intermixed with midbrain dopamine neurons in nonhuman primates and humans.

    PubMed

    Root, David H; Wang, Hui-Ling; Liu, Bing; Barker, David J; Mód, László; Szocsics, Péter; Silva, Afonso C; Maglóczky, Zsófia; Morales, Marisela

    2016-01-01

    The rodent ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra pars compacta (SNC) contain dopamine neurons intermixed with glutamate neurons (expressing vesicular glutamate transporter 2; VGluT2), which play roles in reward and aversion. However, identifying the neuronal compositions of the VTA and SNC in higher mammals has remained challenging. Here, we revealed VGluT2 neurons within the VTA and SNC of nonhuman primates and humans by simultaneous detection of VGluT2 mRNA and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH; for identification of dopamine neurons). We found that several VTA subdivisions share similar cellular compositions in nonhuman primates and humans; their rostral linear nuclei have a high prevalence of VGluT2 neurons lacking TH; their paranigral and parabrachial pigmented nuclei have mostly TH neurons, and their parabrachial pigmented nuclei have dual VGluT2-TH neurons. Within nonhuman primates and humans SNC, the vast majority of neurons are TH neurons but VGluT2 neurons were detected in the pars lateralis subdivision. The demonstration that midbrain dopamine neurons are intermixed with glutamate or glutamate-dopamine neurons from rodents to humans offers new opportunities for translational studies towards analyzing the roles that each of these neurons play in human behavior and in midbrain-associated illnesses such as addiction, depression, schizophrenia, and Parkinson's disease. PMID:27477243

  14. Glutamate neurons are intermixed with midbrain dopamine neurons in nonhuman primates and humans

    PubMed Central

    Root, David H.; Wang, Hui-Ling; Liu, Bing; Barker, David J.; Mód, László; Szocsics, Péter; Silva, Afonso C.; Maglóczky, Zsófia; Morales, Marisela

    2016-01-01

    The rodent ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra pars compacta (SNC) contain dopamine neurons intermixed with glutamate neurons (expressing vesicular glutamate transporter 2; VGluT2), which play roles in reward and aversion. However, identifying the neuronal compositions of the VTA and SNC in higher mammals has remained challenging. Here, we revealed VGluT2 neurons within the VTA and SNC of nonhuman primates and humans by simultaneous detection of VGluT2 mRNA and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH; for identification of dopamine neurons). We found that several VTA subdivisions share similar cellular compositions in nonhuman primates and humans; their rostral linear nuclei have a high prevalence of VGluT2 neurons lacking TH; their paranigral and parabrachial pigmented nuclei have mostly TH neurons, and their parabrachial pigmented nuclei have dual VGluT2-TH neurons. Within nonhuman primates and humans SNC, the vast majority of neurons are TH neurons but VGluT2 neurons were detected in the pars lateralis subdivision. The demonstration that midbrain dopamine neurons are intermixed with glutamate or glutamate-dopamine neurons from rodents to humans offers new opportunities for translational studies towards analyzing the roles that each of these neurons play in human behavior and in midbrain-associated illnesses such as addiction, depression, schizophrenia, and Parkinson’s disease. PMID:27477243

  15. Zhichan decoction induces differentiation of dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson's disease rats after neural stem cell transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Huifen; Song, Jie; Yang, Xuming

    2014-01-01

    The goal of this study was to increase the dopamine content and reduce dopaminergic metabolites in the brain of Parkinson's disease rats. Using high-performance liquid chromatography, we found that dopamine and dopaminergic metabolite (dihydroxyphenylacetic acid and homovanillic acid) content in the midbrain of Parkinson's disease rats was increased after neural stem cell transplantation + Zhichan decoction, compared with neural stem cell transplantation alone. Our genetic algorithm results show that dihydroxyphenylacetic acid and homovanillic acid levels achieve global optimization. Neural stem cell transplantation + Zhichan decoction increased dihydroxyphenylacetic acid levels up to 10-fold, while transplantation alone resulted in a 3-fold increment. Homovanillic acid levels showed no apparent change. Our experimental findings show that after neural stem cell transplantation in Parkinson's disease rats, Zhichan decoction can promote differentiation of neural stem cells into dopaminergic neurons. PMID:25206914

  16. Minocycline enhances MPTP toxicity to dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lichuan; Sugama, Shuei; Chirichigno, Jason W; Gregorio, Jason; Lorenzl, Stefan; Shin, Dong H; Browne, Susan E; Shimizu, Yoshinori; Joh, Tong H; Beal, M Flint; Albers, David S

    2003-10-15

    Minocycline has been shown previously to have beneficial effects against ischemia in rats as well as neuroprotective properties against excitotoxic damage in vitro, nigral cell loss via 6-hydroxydopamine, and to prolong the life-span of transgenic mouse models of Huntington's disease (HD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). We investigated whether minocycline would protect against toxic effects of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), a toxin that selectively destroys nigrostriatal dopaminergic (DA) neurons and produces a clinical state similar to Parkinson's disease (PD) in rodents and primates. We found that although minocycline inhibited microglial activation, it significantly exacerbated MPTP-induced damage to DA neurons. We present evidence suggesting that this effect may be due to inhibition of DA and 1-methyl-4-phenylpridium (MPP+) uptake into striatal vesicles. PMID:14515357

  17. Methamphetamine Self-Administration in Mice Decreases GIRK Channel-Mediated Currents in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sharpe, Amanda L.; Varela, Erika; Bettinger, Lynne

    2015-01-01

    Background: Methamphetamine is a psychomotor stimulant with abuse liability and a substrate for catecholamine uptake transporters. Acute methamphetamine elevates extracellular dopamine, which in the midbrain can activate D2 autoreceptors to increase a G-protein gated inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) conductance that inhibits dopamine neuron firing. These studies examined the neurophysiological consequences of methamphetamine self-administration on GIRK channel-mediated currents in dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area. Methods: Male DBA/2J mice were trained to self-administer intravenous methamphetamine. A dose response was conducted as well as extinction and cue-induced reinstatement. In a second study, after at least 2 weeks of stable self-administration of methamphetamine, electrophysiological brain slice recordings were conducted on dopamine neurons from self-administering and control mice. Results: In the first experiment, ad libitum-fed, nonfood-trained mice exhibited a significant increase in intake and locomotion following self-administration as the concentration of methamphetamine per infusion was increased (0.0015–0.15mg/kg/infusion). Mice exhibited extinction in responding and cue-induced reinstatement. In the second experiment, dopamine cells in both the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area from adult mice with a history of methamphetamine self-administration exhibited significantly smaller D2 and GABAB receptor-mediated currents compared with control mice, regardless of whether their daily self-administration sessions had been 1 or 4 hours. Interestingly, the effects of methamphetamine self-administration were not present when intracellular calcium was chelated by including BAPTA in the recording pipette. Conclusions: Our results suggest that methamphetamine self-administration decreases GIRK channel-mediated currents in dopaminergic neurons and that this effect may be calcium dependent. PMID:25522412

  18. Oestrogen Receptors Enhance Dopamine Neurone Survival in Rat Midbrain

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, M. L.; Ho, C. C.; Day, A. E.; Walker, Q. D.; Francis, R.; Kuhn, C. M.

    2011-01-01

    Previous findings in our laboratory and elsewhere have shown that ovariectomy of rats in adulthood attenuates cocaine-stimulated locomotor behaviour. Ovarian hormones enhance both cocaine-stimulated behaviour and increase dopamine overflow after psychomotor stimulants. The present study aimed to determine whether ovarian hormones have these effects in part by maintaining dopamine neurone number in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) and to investigate the roles of specific oestrogen receptors (ERs) in the maintenance of mesencephalic dopamine neurones. To accomplish this goal, we used unbiased stereological techniques to estimate the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-IR) cell bodies in midbrain regions of intact, ovariectomised and hormone-replaced female rats and mice. Animals received active or sham gonadectomy on postnatal day 60 and received vehicle, 17β-oestradiol (E2) or selective ER agonists propyl-pyrazole-triol (PPT, ERα) or diarylpropionitrile (DPN, ERβ) for 1 month post-surgery. In both rats and mice, ovariectomy reduced the number of TH-IR cells in the SNpc and VTA. Replacement with E2, PPT or DPN prevented or attenuated the loss observed with ovariectomy in both rats and mice. An additional study using ER knockout mice revealed that adult female mice lacking ERα had fewer TH-IR cells in midbrain regions than wild-type mice, whereas mice lacking ERβ had TH-IR cell counts comparable to wild-type. These findings suggest that, although both ER subtypes play a role in the maintenance of TH-IR cell number in the SNpc and VTA, ERα may play a more significant role. PMID:20136693

  19. Wnt/B-Catenin Signaling is Required to Rescue Midbrain Dopaminergic Progenitors and Promote Neurorepair in Ageing Mouse Model of Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    L’Episcopo, Francesca; Tirolo, Cataldo; Testa, Nunzio; Caniglia, Salvatore; Morale, Maria Concetta; Serapide, Maria Francesca; Pluchino, Stefano; Marchetti, Bianca

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Wnt/β-catenin signaling is required for specification and neurogenesis of midbrain dopaminergic (mDA) neurons, the pivotal neuronal population that degenerates in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) mouse model of PD. Wnt/β-catenin signaling plays a vital role in adult neurogenesis but whether it might engage DA neurogenesis/neurorepair in the affected PD brain is yet unresolved. Recently, the adult midbrain aqueduct periventricular regions (Aq-PVRs) were shown to harbor neural stem/progenitor cells (mNPCs) with DA potential in vitro, but restrictive mechanisms in vivo are believed to limit their DA regenerative capacity. Using in vitro mNPC culture systems we herein demonstrate that aging is one most critical factor restricting mNPC neurogenic potential via dysregulation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling. Cococulture paradigms between young/aged (Y/A) mNPCs and Y/A astrocytes identified glial age and a decline of glial-derived factors including Wnts as key determinants of impaired neurogenic potential, whereas Wnt activation regimens efficiently reversed the diminished proliferative, neuronal and DA differentiation potential of A-mNPCs. Next, in vivo studies in wild (Wt) and transgenic β-catenin reporter mice uncovered Wnt/β-catenin signaling activation and remarkable astrocyte remodeling of Aq-PVR in response to MPTP-induced DA neuron death. Spatio-temporal analyses unveiled β-catenin signaling in predopaminergic (Nurr1+/TH−) and imperiled or rescuing DAT+ neurons during MPTP-induced DA neuron injury and self-repair. Aging inhibited Wnt signaling, whereas β-catenin activation in situ with a specific GSK-3β antagonist promoted a significant degree of DA neurorestoration associated with reversal of motor deficit, with implications for neurorestorative approaches in PD. PMID:24648001

  20. Role of Nurr1 in the Generation and Differentiation of Dopaminergic Neurons from Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Traver, Eva; Solís, Oscar; Díaz-Guerra, Eva; Ortiz, Óscar; Vergaño-Vera, Eva; Méndez-Gómez, Héctor R; García-Sanz, Patricia; Moratalla, Rosario; Vicario-Abejón, Carlos

    2016-07-01

    NURR1 is an essential transcription factor for the differentiation, maturation, and maintenance of midbrain dopaminergic neurons (DA neurons) as it has been demonstrated using knock-out mice. DA neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta degenerate in Parkinson's disease (PD) and mutations in the Nurr1 gene have been associated with this human disease. Thus, the study of NURR1 actions in vivo is fundamental to understand the mechanisms of neuron generation and degeneration in the dopaminergic system. Here, we present and discuss findings indicating that NURR1 is a valuable molecular tool for the in vitro generation of DA neurons which could be used for modeling and studying PD in cell culture and in transplantation approaches. Transduction of Nurr1 alone or in combination with other transcription factors such as Foxa2, Ngn2, Ascl1, and Pitx3, induces the generation of DA neurons, which upon transplantation have the capacity to survive and restore motor behavior in animal models of PD. We show that the survival of transplanted neurons is increased when the Nurr1-transduced olfactory bulb stem cells are treated with GDNF. The use of these and other factors with the induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-based technology or the direct reprogramming of astrocytes or fibroblasts into human DA neurons has produced encouraging results for the study of the cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration in PD and for the search of new treatments for this disease. PMID:26678495

  1. The vitamin D receptor in dopamine neurons; its presence in human substantia nigra and its ontogenesis in rat midbrain.

    PubMed

    Cui, X; Pelekanos, M; Liu, P-Y; Burne, T H J; McGrath, J J; Eyles, D W

    2013-04-16

    There is growing evidence that vitamin D is a neuroactive steroid capable of regulating multiple pathways important for both brain development and mature brain function. In particular, there is evidence from rodent models that prenatal vitamin D deficiency alters the development of dopaminergic pathways and this disruption is associated with altered behavior and neurochemistry in the adult brain. Although the presence of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) has been noted in the human substantia nigra, there is a lack of direct evidence showing that VDR is present in dopaminergic cells. Here we confirm that the VDR is present in the nucleus of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons in both the human and rat substantia nigra, and it emerges early in development in the rat, between embryonic day 12 (E12) and E15. Consistent evidence based on immunohistochemistry, real-time PCR and western blot confirmed a pattern of increasing VDR expression in the rat midbrain until weaning. The nuclear expression of VDR in TH-positive neurons during critical periods of brain development suggests that alterations in early life vitamin D status may influence the orderly development of dopaminergic neurons. PMID:23352937

  2. Differential involvement of brainstem noradrenergic and midbrain dopaminergic nuclei in cognitive control.

    PubMed

    Köhler, Stefanie; Bär, Karl-Jürgen; Wagner, Gerd

    2016-06-01

    Several lines of evidence suggest that the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC), the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC), the parietal cortex, and the thalamus are central cortical nodes in a network underlying cognitive control. However, the role of catecholamine producing midbrain and brainstem structures has rarely been addressed by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). We hypothesized differential activation patterns in the ventral tegmental area (VTA)/substantia nigra (SN) and locus coeruleus (LC) with respect to the degree of cognitive control during a Stroop task in healthy subjects. Forty-five healthy subjects were investigated by the manual version of the Stroop task in an event-related fMRI design. We observed significant BOLD activation of both the SN/VTA and LC during the Stroop interference condition (incongruent vs. congruent condition). LC, but not SN/VTA activation significantly correlated with the Stroop interference. Interestingly, a significant linear decrease in BOLD activation during the incongruent condition during the experiment was mainly observed in the fronto-cingulo-striatal network, but not in SN/VTA and LC. Using psychophysiological (PPI) analyses, a significant functional connectivity during cognitive control was observed between SN/VTA and the nigrostriatal/mesolimbic dopaminergic system. For the LC, distinct functional connectivity pattern was observed mainly to the dorsolateral and ventrolateral PFC. Both regions revealed significant functional connectivity to the dACC, parietal and occipital regions. Thus, we demonstrate for the first time that functional activation patterns in the SN/VTA and the LC are modulated by different demands of cognitive control. In addition, these nuclei exhibit distinguishable functional connectivity patterns to cortical brain networks. Hum Brain Mapp 37:2305-2318, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26970351

  3. ETHANOL ACTION ON DOPAMINERGIC NEURONS IN THE VENTRAL TEGMENTAL AREA: INTERACTION WITH INTRINSIC ION CHANNELS AND NEUROTRANSMITTER INPUTS

    PubMed Central

    Morikawa, Hitoshi; Morrisett, Richard A.

    2010-01-01

    The dopaminergic system originating in the midbrain ventral tegmental area (VTA) has been extensively studied over the past decades as a critical neural substrate involved in the development of alcoholism and addiction to other drugs of abuse. Accumulating evidence indicates that ethanol modulates the functional output of this system by directly affecting the firing activity of VTA dopamine neurons, whereas withdrawal from chronic ethanol exposure leads to a reduction in the functional output of these neurons. This chapter will provide an update on the mechanistic investigations of the acute ethanol action on dopamine neuron activity and the neuroadaptations/plasticities in the VTA produced by previous ethanol experience. PMID:20813245

  4. Midbrain dopamine neurons reflect affiliation phenotypes in finches and are tightly coupled to courtship.

    PubMed

    Goodson, James L; Kabelik, David; Kelly, Aubrey M; Rinaldi, Jacob; Klatt, James D

    2009-05-26

    Mesolimbic dopamine (DA) circuits mediate a wide range of goal-oriented behavioral processes, and DA strongly influences appetitive and consummatory aspects of male sexual behavior. In both birds and mammals, mesolimbic projections arise primarily from the ventral tegmental area (VTA), with a smaller contribution from the midbrain central gray (CG). Despite the well known importance of the VTA cell group for incentive motivation functions, relationships of VTA subpopulations to specific aspects of social phenotype remain wholly undescribed. We now show that in male zebra finches (Estrildidae: Taeniopygia guttata), Fos activity within a subpopulation of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-ir; presumably dopaminergic) neurons in the caudal VTA is significantly correlated with courtship singing and coupled to gonadal state. In addition, the number of TH-ir neurons in this caudal subpopulation dichotomously differentiates courting from non-courting male phenotypes, and evolves in relation to sociality (flocking vs. territorial) across several related finch species. Combined, these findings for the VTA suggest that divergent social phenotypes may arise due to the differential assignment of "incentive value" to conspecific stimuli. TH-ir neurons of the CG (a population of unknown function in mammals) exhibit properties that are even more selectively and tightly coupled to the expression of courtship phenotypes (and appetitive courtship singing), both in terms of TH-ir cell number, which correlates significantly with constitutive levels of courtship motivation, and with TH-Fos colocalization, which increases in direct proportion to the phasic expression of song. We propose that these neurons may be core components of social communication circuits across diverse vertebrate taxa. PMID:19439662

  5. Natural apoptosis in developing mice dopamine midbrain neurons and vermal Purkinje cells.

    PubMed

    Martí-Clúa, J

    2016-01-01

    Natural cell death by apoptosis was studied in two neuronal populations of BALB/c, C57BL/6 and B6CBA-Aw-j/A hybrid stock mice: (I) dopaminergic (DA) neurons in choosing coronal levels throughout the anteroposterior extent of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc), and (II) Purkinje cells (PCs) in each vermal lobe of the cerebellar cortex. Mice were collected at postnatal day (P) 2 and P14 for the midbrain study, and at P4 and P7 for the analysis of the cerebellum. No DA cells with morphologic criteria for apoptosis were found. Moreover, when the combination of tyrosine hydroxylase and TUNEL or tyrosine hydroxylase and active caspase-3 immunohistochemistry were performed in the same tissue section, no DA cells TUNEL positives or active caspase-3-stained DA neurons were seen. On the other hand, when PCs were considered, data analysis revealed that more dying PCs were observed at P4 than at P7. Values of neuron death were highest in the central lobe; this was followed by the posterior and anterior lobes and then by the inferior lobe. To determine if apoptotic death of PCs is linked to their time-of-origin profiles, pregnant dams were administered with [3H]TdR on embryonic days 11-12, 12-13, 13-14 and 14-15. When TUNEL and [3H]TdR autoradiography or active caspase-3 immunohistochemistry and [3H]TdR autoradiography were combined in the same tissue section, results reveal that the naturally occurring PC death is not related to its time of origin but, rather, is random across age. PMID:27543775

  6. Direct Differentiation of Adult Ocular Progenitors into Striatal Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, Iqbal; Zhao, Xing; Parameswaran, Sowmya; Destache, Christopher J.; Rodriguez-Sierra, Jorge; Thoreson, Wallace B.; Ahmad, Hiba; Sorrentino, John; Balasubramanian, Sudha

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease, characterized by motor dysfunction due to the loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, is one of the most prevalent age-related neurodegenerative disorders. Given there is no current cure, the stem cell approach has emerged as a viable therapeutic option to replace the dopaminergic neurons that are progressively lost to the disease. The success of the approach is likely to depend upon accessible, renewable, immune compatible, and non-tumorigenic sources of neural progenitors from which stable dopaminergic neurons can be generated efficaciously. Here, we demonstrate that neural progenitors derived from limbus, a regenerative and accessible ocular tissue, represent a safe source of dopaminergic neurons. When the limbus-derived neural progenitors were subjected to a well-established protocol of directed differentiation under the influence of Shh and FGF8, they acquired the biochemical and functional phenotype of dopaminergic neurons that included the ability to synthesize dopamine. Their intrastriatal transplantation in the rat model of hemi-Parkinsonism was associated with a reduction in the amphetamine-induced rotation. No tumor formation was observed 6 weeks post-transplantation. Together, these observations posit limbus-derived neural progenitors as an accessible and safe source of dopaminergic neurons for a potential autologous ex-vivo stem cell approach to Parkinson’s disease. PMID:26019760

  7. Direct differentiation of adult ocular progenitors into striatal dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Iqbal; Zhao, Xing; Parameswaran, Sowmya; Destache, Christopher J; Rodriguez-Sierra, Jorge; Thoreson, Wallace B; Ahmad, Hiba; Sorrentino, John; Balasubramanian, Sudha

    2015-05-01

    Parkinson's disease, characterized by motor dysfunction due to the loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, is one of the most prevalent age-related neurodegenerative disorders. Given there is no current cure, the stem cell approach has emerged as a viable therapeutic option to replace the dopaminergic neurons that are progressively lost to the disease. The success of the approach is likely to depend upon accessible, renewable, immune compatible, and non-tumorigenic sources of neural progenitors from which stable dopaminergic neurons can be generated efficaciously. Here, we demonstrate that neural progenitors derived from limbus, a regenerative and accessible ocular tissue, represent a safe source of dopaminergic neurons. When the limbus-derived neural progenitors were subjected to a well-established protocol of directed differentiation under the influence of Shh and FGF8, they acquired the biochemical and functional phenotype of dopaminergic neurons that included the ability to synthesize dopamine. Their intrastriatal transplantation in the rat model of hemi-Parkinsonism was associated with a reduction in the amphetamine-induced rotation. No tumor formation was observed 6 weeks post-transplantation. Together, these observations posit limbus-derived neural progenitors as an accessible and safe source of dopaminergic neurons for a potential autologous ex-vivo stem cell approach to Parkinson's disease. PMID:26019760

  8. Wnt5a Regulates Ventral Midbrain Morphogenesis and the Development of A9–A10 Dopaminergic Cells In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Andersson, Emma R.; Prakash, Nilima; Bryja, Vitezslav; Bryjova, Lenka; Yamaguchi, Terry P.; Hall, Anita C.

    2008-01-01

    Wnt5a is a morphogen that activates the Wnt/planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway and serves multiple functions during development. PCP signaling controls the orientation of cells within an epithelial plane as well as convergent extension (CE) movements. Wnt5a was previously reported to promote differentiation of A9–10 dopaminergic (DA) precursors in vitro. However, the signaling mechanism in DA cells and the function of Wnt5a during midbrain development in vivo remains unclear. We hereby report that Wnt5a activated the GTPase Rac1 in DA cells and that Rac1 inhibitors blocked the Wnt5a-induced DA neuron differentiation of ventral midbrain (VM) precursor cultures, linking Wnt5a-induced differentiation with a known effector of Wnt/PCP signaling. In vivo, Wnt5a was expressed throughout the VM at embryonic day (E)9.5, and was restricted to the VM floor and basal plate by E11.5–E13.5. Analysis of Wnt5a−/− mice revealed a transient increase in progenitor proliferation at E11.5, and a precociously induced NR4A2+ (Nurr1) precursor pool at E12.5. The excess NR4A2+ precursors remained undifferentiated until E14.5, when a transient 25% increase in DA neurons was detected. Wnt5a−/− mice also displayed a defect in (mid)brain morphogenesis, including an impairment in midbrain elongation and a rounded ventricular cavity. Interestingly, these alterations affected mostly cells in the DA lineage. The ventral Sonic hedgehog-expressing domain was broadened and flattened, a typical CE phenotype, and the domains occupied by Ngn2+ DA progenitors, NR4A2+ DA precursors and TH+ DA neurons were rostrocaudally reduced and laterally expanded. In summary, we hereby describe a Wnt5a regulation of Wnt/PCP signaling in the DA lineage and provide evidence for multiple functions of Wnt5a in the VM in vivo, including the regulation of VM morphogenesis, DA progenitor cell division, and differentiation of NR4A2+ DA precursors. PMID:18953410

  9. Detailed Analysis of the Genetic and Epigenetic Signatures of iPSC-Derived Mesodiencephalic Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Roessler, Reinhard; Smallwood, Sebastien A.; Veenvliet, Jesse V.; Pechlivanoglou, Petros; Peng, Su-Ping; Chakrabarty, Koushik; Groot-Koerkamp, Marian J.A.; Pasterkamp, R. Jeroen; Wesseling, Evelyn; Kelsey, Gavin; Boddeke, Erik; Smidt, Marten P.; Copray, Sjef

    2014-01-01

    Summary Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) hold great promise for in vitro generation of disease-relevant cell types, such as mesodiencephalic dopaminergic (mdDA) neurons involved in Parkinson’s disease. Although iPSC-derived midbrain DA neurons have been generated, detailed genetic and epigenetic characterizations of such neurons are lacking. The goal of this study was to examine the authenticity of iPSC-derived DA neurons obtained by established protocols. We FACS purified mdDA (Pitx3Gfp/+) neurons derived from mouse iPSCs and primary mdDA (Pitx3Gfp/+) neurons to analyze and compare their genetic and epigenetic features. Although iPSC-derived DA neurons largely adopted characteristics of their in vivo counterparts, relevant deviations in global gene expression and DNA methylation were found. Hypermethylated genes, mainly involved in neurodevelopment and basic neuronal functions, consequently showed reduced expression levels. Such abnormalities should be addressed because they might affect unambiguous long-term functionality and hamper the potential of iPSC-derived DA neurons for in vitro disease modeling or cell-based therapy. PMID:24749075

  10. Vesicular monoamine transporter 2 and dopamine transporter are molecular targets of Pitx3 in the ventral midbrain dopamine neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Dong-Youn; Hong, Sunghoi; Jeong, Joo-Won; Choi, Sangdun; Kim, Hansoo; Kim, Jangwoo; Kim, Kwang-Soo

    2016-01-01

    Midbrain dopamine (mDA) neurons play critical roles in the regulation of voluntary movement and their dysfunction is associated with Parkinson’s disease. Pitx3 has been implicated in the proper development of mDA neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta, which are selectively lost in Parkinson’s disease. However, the basic mechanisms underlying its role in mDA neuron development and/or survival are poorly understood. Toward this goal, we sought to identify downstream target genes of Pitx3 by comparing gene expression profiles in mDA neurons of wild-type and Pitx3-deficient aphakia mice. This global gene expression analysis revealed many potential target genes of Pitx3; in particular, the expression of vesicular monoamine transporter 2 and dopamine transporter, responsible for dopamine storage and reuptake, respectively, is greatly reduced in mDA neurons by Pitx3 ablation. In addition, gain-of-function analyses and chromatin immunoprecipitation strongly indicate that Pitx3 may directly activate transcription of vesicular monoamine transporter 2 and dopamine transporter genes, critically contributing to neurotransmission and/or survival of mDA neurons. As the two genes have been known to be regulated by Nurr1, another key dopaminergic transcription factor, we propose that Pitx3 and Nurr1 may coordinately regulate mDA specification and survival, at least in part, through a merging and overlapping downstream pathway. PMID:19780901

  11. Dopaminergic Neurons and Brain Reward Pathways: From Neurogenesis to Circuit Assembly.

    PubMed

    Luo, Sarah X; Huang, Eric J

    2016-03-01

    Midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta and ventral tegmental area regulate extrapyramidal movement and important cognitive functions, including motivation, reward associations, and habit learning. Dysfunctions in DA neuron circuitry have been implicated in several neuropsychiatric disorders, including addiction and schizophrenia, whereas selective degeneration of DA neurons in substantia nigra pars compacta is a key neuropathological feature in Parkinson disease. Efforts to understand these disorders have focused on dissecting the underlying causes, as well as developing therapeutic strategies to replenish dopamine deficiency. In particular, the promise of cell replacement therapies for clinical intervention has led to extensive research in the identification of mechanisms involved in DA neuron development. It is hoped that a comprehensive understanding of these mechanisms will lead to therapeutic strategies that improve the efficiency of DA neuron production, engraftment, and function. This review provides a comprehensive discussion on how Wnt/β-catenin and sonic hedgehog-Smoothened signaling mechanisms control the specification and expansion of DA progenitors and the differentiation of DA neurons. We also discuss how mechanisms involving transforming growth factor-β and transcriptional cofactor homeodomain interacting protein kinase 2 regulate the survival and maturation of DA neurons in early postnatal life. These results not only reveal fundamental mechanisms regulating DA neuron development, but also provide important insights to their potential contributions to neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26724386

  12. Neuromelanin activates microglia and induces degeneration of dopaminergic neurons: implications for progression of Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Wei; Phillips, Kester; Wielgus, Albert R.; Liu, Jie; Albertini, Alberto; Zucca, Fabio A.; Faust, Rudolph; Qian, Steven Y.; Miller, David S.; Chignell, Colin F.; Wilson, Belinda; Jackson-Lewis, Vernice; Przedborski, Serge; Joset, Danielle; Loike, John; Hong, Jau-Shyong; Sulzer, David; Zecca, Luigi

    2013-01-01

    In Parkinson's disease (PD), there is a progressive loss of neuromelanin (NM)-containing dopamine (DA) neurons in substantia nigra (SN) which is associated with microgliosis and presence of extracellular NM. Herein, we have investigated the interplay between microglia and human NM on the degeneration of SN dopaminergic neurons. Although NM particles are phagocytised and degraded by microglia within minutes in vitro, extracellular NM particles induce microglial activation and ensuing production of superoxide, nitric oxide (NO), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), and pro-inflammatory factors. Furthermore, NM produces, in a microglia-depended manner, neurodegeneration in primary ventral midbrain cultures. Neurodegeneration was effectively attenuated with microglia derived from mice deficient in macrophage antigen complex-1 (Mac-1), a microglial integrin receptor involved in the initiation of phagocytosis. Neuronal loss was also attenuated with microglia derived from mice deficient in phagocytic oxidase (PHOX), a subunit of NADPH oxidase, that is responsible for superoxide and H2O2 production, or apocyanin, a NADPH oxidase inhibitor. In vivo, NM injected into rat SN produces microgliosis and a loss of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) neurons. Thus, these results show that extracellular NM can activate microglia, which in turn, may induce dopaminergic neurodegeneration in PD. Our study may have far-reaching implications, both pathogenic and therapeutic. PMID:19957214

  13. Caspase-11 Plays an Essential Role in Methamphetamine-Induced Dopaminergic Neuron Apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Weiye; Xie, Wei-Bing; Qiao, Dongfang; Qiu, Pingming; Huang, Enping; Li, Bing; Chen, Chuanxiang; Liu, Chao; Wang, Qi; Lin, Zhoumeng; Wang, Huijun

    2015-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is an extremely addictive stimulant drug that is widely used with high potential of abuse. Previous studies have shown that METH exposure damages the nervous system, especially dopaminergic neurons. However, the exact molecular mechanisms of METH-induced neurotoxicity remain unclear. We hypothesized that caspase-11 is involved in METH-induced neuronal apoptosis. We tested our hypothesis by examining the change of caspase-11 protein expression in dopaminergic neurons (PC12 and SH-SY5Y) and in the midbrain of rats exposed to METH with Western blotting. We also determined the effects of blocking caspase-11 expression with wedelolactone (a specific inhibitor of caspase-11) or siRNA on METH-induced apoptosis in PC12 cells and SH-SY5Y cells using Annexin V and TUNEL staining. Furthermore, we observed the protein expression changes of the apoptotic markers, cleaved caspase-3 and cleaved poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP), after silencing the caspase-11 expression in rat midbrain by injecting LV-shcasp11 lentivirus using a stereotaxic positioning system. Results showed that METH exposure increased caspase-11 expression both in vitro and in vivo, with the effects in vitro being dose- and time-dependent. Inhibition of caspase-11 expression with either wedelolactone or siRNAs reduced the number of METH-induced apoptotic cells. In addition, blocking caspase-11 expression inhibited METH-induced activation of caspase-3 and PARP in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that caspase-11/caspase-3 signal pathway is involved in METH-induced neurotoxicity. These results indicate that caspase-11 plays an essential role in METH-induced neuronal apoptosis and may be a potential gene target for therapeutics in METH-caused neurotoxicity. PMID:25631491

  14. Differentiation of human embryonic stem cells to dopaminergic neurons in serum-free suspension culture.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Thomas C; Noggle, Scott A; Palmarini, Gail M; Weiler, Deb A; Lyons, Ian G; Pensa, Kate A; Meedeniya, Adrian C B; Davidson, Bruce P; Lambert, Nevin A; Condie, Brian G

    2004-01-01

    The use of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) as a source of dopaminergic neurons for Parkinson's disease cell therapy will require the development of simple and reliable cell differentiation protocols. The use of cell cocultures, added extracellular signaling factors, or transgenic approaches to drive hESC differentiation could lead to additional regulatory as well as cell production delays for these therapies. Because the neuronal cell lineage seems to require limited or no signaling for its formation, we tested the ability of hESCs to differentiate to form dopamine-producing neurons in a simple serum-free suspension culture system. BG01 and BG03 hESCs were differentiated as suspension aggregates, and neural progenitors and neurons were detectable after 2-4 weeks. Plated neurons responded appropriately to electrophysiological cues. This differentiation was inhibited by early exposure to bone morphogenic protein (BMP)-4, but a pulse of BMP-4 from days 5 to 9 caused induction of peripheral neuronal differentiation. Real-time polymerase chain reaction and whole-mount immunocytochemistry demonstrated the expression of multiple markers of the midbrain dopaminergic phenotype in serum-free differentiations. Neurons expressing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) were killed by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA), a neurotoxic catecholamine. Upon plating, these cells released dopamine and other catecholamines in response to K+ depolarization. Surviving TH+ neurons, derived from the cells differentiated in serum-free suspension cultures, were detected 8 weeks after transplantation into 6-OHDA-lesioned rat brains. This work suggests that hESCs can differentiate in simple serum-free suspension cultures to produce the large number of cells required for transplantation studies. PMID:15579641

  15. Chronic stress enhances microglia activation and exacerbates death of nigral dopaminergic neurons under conditions of inflammation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Parkinson’s disease is an irreversible neurodegenerative disease linked to progressive movement disorders and is accompanied by an inflammatory reaction that is believed to contribute to its pathogenesis. Since sensitivity to inflammation is not the same in all brain structures, the aim of this work was to test whether physiological conditions as stress could enhance susceptibility to inflammation in the substantia nigra, where death of dopaminergic neurons takes place in Parkinson’s disease. Methods To achieve our aim, we induced an inflammatory process in nonstressed and stressed rats (subject to a chronic variate stress) by a single intranigral injection of lipopolysaccharide, a potent proinflammogen. The effect of this treatment was evaluated on inflammatory markers as well as on neuronal and glial populations. Results Data showed a synergistic effect between inflammation and stress, thus resulting in higher microglial activation and expression of proinflammatory markers. More important, the higher inflammatory response seen in stressed animals was associated with a higher rate of death of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra, the most characteristic feature seen in Parkinson’s disease. This effect was dependent on glucocorticoids. Conclusions Our data demonstrate that stress sensitises midbrain microglia to further inflammatory stimulus. This suggests that stress may be an important risk factor in the degenerative processes and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. PMID:24565378

  16. X-ray fluorescence analysis of iron and manganese distribution in primary dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dučić, Tanja; Barski, Elisabeth; Salome, Murielle; Koch, Jan C; Bähr, Mathias; Lingor, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Transition metals have been suggested to play a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease. X-ray microscopy combined with a cryogenic setup is a powerful method for elemental imaging in low concentrations and high resolution in intact cells, eliminating the need for fixation and sectioning of the specimen. Here, we performed an elemental distribution analysis in cultured primary midbrain neurons with a step size in the order of 300 nm and ∼ 0.1 ppm sensitivity under cryo conditions by using X-ray fluorescence microscopy. We report the elemental mappings on the subcellular level in primary mouse dopaminergic (DAergic) and non-DAergic neurons after treatment with transition metals. Application of Fe2+ resulted in largely extracellular accumulation of iron without preference for the neuronal transmitter subtype. A quantification of different Fe oxidation states was performed using X-ray absorption near edge structure analysis. After treatment with Mn2+, a cytoplasmic/paranuclear localization of Mn was observed preferentially in DAergic neurons, while no prominent signal was detectable after Mn3+ treatment. Immunocytochemical analysis correlated the preferential Mn uptake to increased expression of voltage-gated calcium channels in DAergic neurons. We discuss the implications of this differential elemental distribution for the selective vulnerability of DAergic neurons and Parkinson's disease pathogenesis. PMID:23106162

  17. Melanocortin 3 Receptor Signaling in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons Increases the Motivation for Food Reward

    PubMed Central

    Pandit, Rahul; Omrani, Azar; Luijendijk, Mieneke C M; de Vrind, Véronne A J; Van Rozen, Andrea J; Ophuis, Ralph J A Oude; Garner, Keith; Kallo, Imre; Ghanem, Alexander; Liposits, Zsolt; Conzelmann, Karl-Klaus; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J; la Fleur, Susanne E; Adan, Roger A H

    2016-01-01

    The central melanocortin (MC) system mediates its effects on food intake via MC3 (MC3R) and MC4 receptors (MC4R). Although the role of MC4R in meal size determination, satiation, food preference, and motivation is well established, the involvement of MC3R in the modulation of food intake has been less explored. Here, we investigated the role of MC3R on the incentive motivation for food, which is a crucial component of feeding behavior. Dopaminergic neurons within the ventral tegmental area (VTA) have a crucial role in the motivation for food. We here report that MC3Rs are expressed on VTA dopaminergic neurons and that pro-opiomelanocortinergic (POMC) neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (Arc) innervate these VTA dopaminergic neurons. Our findings show that intracerebroventricular or intra-VTA infusion of the selective MC3R agonist γMSH increases responding for sucrose under a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement, but not free sucrose consumption in rats. Furthermore, ex vivo electrophysiological recordings show increased VTA dopaminergic neuronal activity upon γMSH application. Consistent with a dopamine-mediated effect of γMSH, the increased motivation for sucrose after intra-VTA infusion of γMSH was blocked by pretreatment with the dopamine receptor antagonist α-flupenthixol. Taken together, we demonstrate an Arc POMC projection onto VTA dopaminergic neurons that modulates motivation for palatable food via activation of MC3R signaling. PMID:26852738

  18. Melanocortin 3 Receptor Signaling in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons Increases the Motivation for Food Reward.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Rahul; Omrani, Azar; Luijendijk, Mieneke C M; de Vrind, Véronne A J; Van Rozen, Andrea J; Ophuis, Ralph J A Oude; Garner, Keith; Kallo, Imre; Ghanem, Alexander; Liposits, Zsolt; Conzelmann, Karl-Klaus; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J; la Fleur, Susanne E; Adan, Roger A H

    2016-08-01

    The central melanocortin (MC) system mediates its effects on food intake via MC3 (MC3R) and MC4 receptors (MC4R). Although the role of MC4R in meal size determination, satiation, food preference, and motivation is well established, the involvement of MC3R in the modulation of food intake has been less explored. Here, we investigated the role of MC3R on the incentive motivation for food, which is a crucial component of feeding behavior. Dopaminergic neurons within the ventral tegmental area (VTA) have a crucial role in the motivation for food. We here report that MC3Rs are expressed on VTA dopaminergic neurons and that pro-opiomelanocortinergic (POMC) neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (Arc) innervate these VTA dopaminergic neurons. Our findings show that intracerebroventricular or intra-VTA infusion of the selective MC3R agonist γMSH increases responding for sucrose under a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement, but not free sucrose consumption in rats. Furthermore, ex vivo electrophysiological recordings show increased VTA dopaminergic neuronal activity upon γMSH application. Consistent with a dopamine-mediated effect of γMSH, the increased motivation for sucrose after intra-VTA infusion of γMSH was blocked by pretreatment with the dopamine receptor antagonist α-flupenthixol. Taken together, we demonstrate an Arc POMC projection onto VTA dopaminergic neurons that modulates motivation for palatable food via activation of MC3R signaling. PMID:26852738

  19. Presynaptic dopamine D2-like receptors inhibit excitatory transmission onto rat ventral tegmental dopaminergic neurones

    PubMed Central

    Koga, Eiko; Momiyama, Toshihiko

    2000-01-01

    The effects of dopamine (DA) on non-NMDA glutamatergic transmission onto dopaminergic neurones in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) were examined in rat midbrain slices using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. EPSCs in dopaminergic neurones evoked by focal stimulation within the VTA were reversibly blocked by 5 μm CNQX in the presence of bicuculline (20 μm), strychnine (0.5 μm) and D-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (D-AP5, 25 μm). Bath application of DA reduced the amplitude of EPSCs up to 65.1 ± 9.52% in a concentration-dependent manner between 0.3–1000 μm (IC50, 16.0 μm) without affecting the holding current at −60 mV measured using a Cs+-filled electrode. The effect of DA on evoked EPSCs was mimicked by the D2-like receptor agonist quinpirole but not by the D1-like receptor agonist SKF 81297, and was antagonized by the D2-like receptor antagonist sulpiride (KB, 0.96 μm), but not by the D1-like receptor antagonist SCH 23390 (KB, 228.6 μm). Dopamine (30 μm) reduced the mean frequency of spontaneous miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs) without affecting their mean amplitude, and the DA-induced effect on the mEPSCs was dependent on the external Ca2+ concentration. These results suggest that afferent glutamatergic fibres which terminate on VTA dopaminergic neurones possess presynaptic D2-like receptors, activation of which inhibits glutamate release by reducing Ca2+ influx. PMID:10673553

  20. Menthol Alone Upregulates Midbrain nAChRs, Alters nAChR Subtype Stoichiometry, Alters Dopamine Neuron Firing Frequency, and Prevents Nicotine Reward.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; Nichols, Weston A; Moaddel, Ruin; Xiao, Cheng; Lester, Henry A

    2016-03-01

    Upregulation of β2 subunit-containing (β2*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is implicated in several aspects of nicotine addiction, and menthol cigarette smokers tend to upregulate β2* nAChRs more than nonmenthol cigarette smokers. We investigated the effect of long-term menthol alone on midbrain neurons containing nAChRs. In midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons from mice containing fluorescent nAChR subunits, menthol alone increased the number of α4 and α6 nAChR subunits, but this upregulation did not occur in midbrain GABAergic neurons. Thus, chronic menthol produces a cell-type-selective upregulation of α4* nAChRs, complementing that of chronic nicotine alone, which upregulates α4 subunit-containing (α4*) nAChRs in GABAergic but not DA neurons. In mouse brain slices and cultured midbrain neurons, menthol reduced DA neuron firing frequency and altered DA neuron excitability following nAChR activation. Furthermore, menthol exposure before nicotine abolished nicotine reward-related behavior in mice. In neuroblastoma cells transfected with fluorescent nAChR subunits, exposure to 500 nm menthol alone also increased nAChR number and favored the formation of (α4)3(β2)2 nAChRs; this contrasts with the action of nicotine itself, which favors (α4)2(β2)3 nAChRs. Menthol alone also increases the number of α6β2 receptors that exclude the β3 subunit. Thus, menthol stabilizes lower-sensitivity α4* and α6 subunit-containing nAChRs, possibly by acting as a chemical chaperone. The abolition of nicotine reward-related behavior may be mediated through menthol's ability to stabilize lower-sensitivity nAChRs and alter DA neuron excitability. We conclude that menthol is more than a tobacco flavorant: administered alone chronically, it alters midbrain DA neurons of the nicotine reward-related pathway. PMID:26961950

  1. Multiple value signals in dopaminergic midbrain and their role in avoidance contexts.

    PubMed

    Rigoli, Francesco; Chew, Benjamin; Dayan, Peter; Dolan, Raymond J

    2016-07-15

    The role of dopaminergic brain regions in avoidance behaviour is unclear. Active avoidance requires motivation, and the latter is linked to increased activity in dopaminergic regions. However, avoidance is also often tethered to the prospect of punishment, a state typically characterized by below baseline levels of dopaminergic function. Avoidance has been considered from the perspective of two-factor theories where the prospect of safety is considered to act as a surrogate for reward, leading to dopamine release and enhanced motivational drive. Using fMRI we investigated predictions from two-factor theory by separating the neural representation of a conventional net expected value, which is negative in the case of avoidance, from an adjusted expected value which factors in a possibility of punishment and is larger for both big rewards and big (predictably avoidable) punishments. We show that neural responses in ventral striatum and ventral tegmental area/substantial nigra (VTA/SN) covaried with net expected value. Activity in VTA/SN also covaried with an adjusted expected value, as did activity in anterior insula. Consistent with two-factor theory models, the findings indicate that VTA/SN and insula process an adjusted expected value during avoidance behaviour. PMID:27132047

  2. Transcription factors FOXA1 and FOXA2 maintain dopaminergic neuronal properties and control feeding behavior in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Pristerà, Alessandro; Lin, Wei; Kaufmann, Anna-Kristin; Brimblecombe, Katherine R; Threlfell, Sarah; Dodson, Paul D; Magill, Peter J; Fernandes, Cathy; Cragg, Stephanie J; Ang, Siew-Lan

    2015-09-01

    Midbrain dopaminergic (mDA) neurons are implicated in cognitive functions, neuropsychiatric disorders, and pathological conditions; hence understanding genes regulating their homeostasis has medical relevance. Transcription factors FOXA1 and FOXA2 (FOXA1/2) are key determinants of mDA neuronal identity during development, but their roles in adult mDA neurons are unknown. We used a conditional knockout strategy to specifically ablate FOXA1/2 in mDA neurons of adult mice. We show that deletion of Foxa1/2 results in down-regulation of tyrosine hydroxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme of dopamine (DA) biosynthesis, specifically in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). In addition, DA synthesis and striatal DA transmission were reduced after Foxa1/2 deletion. Furthermore, the burst-firing activity characteristic of SNc mDA neurons was drastically reduced in the absence of FOXA1/2. These molecular and functional alterations lead to a severe feeding deficit in adult Foxa1/2 mutant mice, independently of motor control, which could be rescued by L-DOPA treatment. FOXA1/2 therefore control the maintenance of molecular and physiological properties of SNc mDA neurons and impact on feeding behavior in adult mice. PMID:26283356

  3. Functional Rescue of Dopaminergic Neuron Loss in Parkinson's Disease Mice After Transplantation of Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells.

    PubMed

    Altarche-Xifro, Wassim; di Vicino, Umberto; Muñoz-Martin, Maria Isabel; Bortolozzi, Analía; Bové, Jordi; Vila, Miquel; Cosma, Maria Pia

    2016-06-01

    Parkinson's disease is a common neurodegenerative disorder, which is due to the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and for which no definitive cure is currently available. Cellular functions in mouse and human tissues can be restored after fusion of bone marrow (BM)-derived cells with a variety of somatic cells. Here, after transplantation of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs) in the SNpc of two different mouse models of Parkinson's disease, we significantly ameliorated the dopaminergic neuron loss and function. We show fusion of transplanted HSPCs with neurons and with glial cells in the ventral midbrain of Parkinson's disease mice. Interestingly, the hybrids can undergo reprogramming in vivo and survived up to 4weeks after transplantation, while acquiring features of mature astroglia. These newly generated astroglia produced Wnt1 and were essential for functional rescue of the dopaminergic neurons. Our data suggest that glial-derived hybrids produced upon fusion of transplanted HSPCs in the SNpc can rescue the Parkinson's disease phenotype via a niche-mediated effect, and can be exploited as an efficient cell-therapy approach. PMID:27428421

  4. Differential Neuronal Plasticity of Dental Pulp Stem Cells From Exfoliated Deciduous and Permanent Teeth Towards Dopaminergic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Majumdar, Debanjana; Kanafi, Mohammad; Bhonde, Ramesh; Gupta, Pawan; Datta, Indrani

    2016-09-01

    Based on early occurrence in chronological age, stem-cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHED) has been reported to possess better differentiation-potential toward certain cell-lineage in comparison to stem-cells from adult teeth (DPSCs). Whether this same property between them extends for the yield of functional central nervous system neurons is still not evaluated. Hence, we aim to assess the neuronal plasticity of SHED in comparison to DPSCs toward dopaminergic-neurons and further, if the difference is reflected in a differential expression of sonic-hedgehog (SHH)-receptors and basal-expressions of tyrosine-hydroxylase [TH; through cAMP levels]. Human SHED and DPSCs were exposed to midbrain-cues [SHH, fibroblast growth-factor8, and basic fibroblast growth-factor], and their molecular, immunophenotypical, and functional characterization was performed at different time-points of induction. Though SHED and DPSCs spontaneously expressed early-neuronal and neural-crest marker in their naïve state, only SHED expressed a high basal-expression of TH. The upregulation of dopaminergic transcription-factors Nurr1, Engrailed1, and Pitx3 was more pronounced in DPSCs. The yield of TH-expressing cells decreased from 49.8% to 32.16% in SHED while it increased from 8.09% to 77.47% in DPSCs. Dopamine release and intracellular-Ca(2+) influx upon stimulation (KCl and ATP) was higher in induced DPSCs. Significantly lower-expression of SHH-receptors was noted in naïve SHED than DPSCs, which may explain the differential neuronal plasticity. In addition, unlike DPSCs, SHED showed a down-regulation of cyclic adenosine-monophosphate (cAMP) upon exposure to SHH; possibly another contributor to the lesser differentiation-potential. Our data clearly demonstrates for the first time that DPSCs possess superior neuronal plasticity toward dopaminergic-neurons than SHED; influenced by higher SHH-receptor and lower basal TH expression. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2048-2063, 2016. © 2016

  5. Electrical and Ca2+ signaling in dendritic spines of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hage, Travis A; Sun, Yujie; Khaliq, Zayd M

    2016-01-01

    Little is known about the density and function of dendritic spines on midbrain dopamine neurons, or the relative contribution of spine and shaft synapses to excitability. Using Ca2+ imaging, glutamate uncaging, fluorescence recovery after photobleaching and transgenic mice expressing labeled PSD-95, we comparatively analyzed electrical and Ca2+ signaling in spines and shaft synapses of dopamine neurons. Dendritic spines were present on dopaminergic neurons at low densities in live and fixed tissue. Uncaging-evoked potential amplitudes correlated inversely with spine length but positively with the presence of PSD-95. Spine Ca2+ signals were less sensitive to hyperpolarization than shaft synapses, suggesting amplification of spine head voltages. Lastly, activating spines during pacemaking, we observed an unexpected enhancement of spine Ca2+ midway throughout the spike cycle, likely involving recruitment of NMDA receptors and voltage-gated conductances. These results demonstrate functionality of spines in dopamine neurons and reveal a novel modulation of spine Ca2+ signaling during pacemaking. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13905.001 PMID:27163179

  6. Direct Bidirectional μ-Opioid Control of Midbrain Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hjelmstad, Gregory O.; Fujita, Wakako; Fields, Howard L.

    2014-01-01

    The ventral tegmental area (VTA) is required for the rewarding and motivational actions of opioids and activation of dopamine neurons has been implicated in these effects. The canonical model posits that opioid activation of VTA dopamine neurons is indirect, through inhibition of GABAergic inputs. However, VTA dopamine neurons also express postsynaptic μ-opioid peptide (MOP) receptors. We report here that in Sprague Dawley rat, the MOP receptor-selective agonist DAMGO (0.5–3 μm) depolarized or increased the firing rate of 87 of 451 VTA neurons (including 22 of 110 dopamine neurons). This DAMGO excitation occurs in the presence of GABAA receptor blockade and its EC50 value is two orders of magnitude lower than for presynaptic inhibition of GABA release on to VTA neurons. Consistent with a postsynaptic channel opening, excitations were accompanied by a decrease in input resistance. Excitations were blocked by CdCl2 (100 μm, n = 5) and ω-agatoxin-IVA (100 nm, n = 3), nonselective and Cav2.1 Ca2+ channel blockers, respectively. DAMGO also produced a postsynaptic inhibition in 233 of 451 VTA neurons, including 45 of 110 dopamine neurons. The mean reversal potential of the inhibitory current was −78 ± 7 mV and inhibitions were blocked by the K+ channel blocker BaCl2 (100 μm, n = 7). Blockade of either excitation or inhibition unmasked the opposite effect, suggesting that MOP receptors activate concurrent postsynaptic excitatory and inhibitory processes in most VTA neurons. These results provide a novel direct mechanism for MOP receptor control of VTA dopamine neurons. PMID:25355223

  7. Dorsal Striatal-Midbrain Connectivity in Humans Predicts How Reinforcements Are Used to Guide Decisions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kahnt, Thorsten; Park, Soyoung Q.; Cohen, Michael X.; Beck, Anne; Heinz, Andreas; Wrase, Jana

    2009-01-01

    It has been suggested that the target areas of dopaminergic midbrain neurons, the dorsal (DS) and ventral striatum (VS), are differently involved in reinforcement learning especially as actor and critic. Whereas the critic learns to predict rewards, the actor maintains action values to guide future decisions. The different midbrain connections to…

  8. Sex-dependent diversity in ventral tegmental dopaminergic neurons and developmental programing: A molecular, cellular and behavioral analysis

    PubMed Central

    Gillies, G.E.; Virdee, K.; McArthur, S.; Dalley, J.W.

    2014-01-01

    The knowledge that diverse populations of dopaminergic neurons within the ventral tegmental area (VTA) can be distinguished in terms of their molecular, electrophysiological and functional properties, as well as their differential projections to cortical and subcortical regions has significance for key brain functions, such as the regulation of motivation, working memory and sensorimotor control. Almost without exception, this understanding has evolved from landmark studies performed in the male sex. However, converging evidence from both clinical and pre-clinical studies illustrates that the structure and functioning of the VTA dopaminergic systems are intrinsically different in males and females. This may be driven by sex differences in the hormonal environment during adulthood (‘activational’ effects) and development (perinatal and/or pubertal ‘organizational’ effects), as well as genetic factors, especially the SRY gene on the Y chromosome in males, which is expressed in a sub-population of adult midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Stress and stress hormones, especially glucocorticoids, are important factors which interact with the VTA dopaminergic systems in order to achieve behavioral adaptation and enable the individual to cope with environmental change. Here, also, there is male/female diversity not only during adulthood, but also in early life when neurobiological programing by stress or glucocorticoid exposure differentially impacts dopaminergic developmental trajectories in male and female brains. This may have enduring consequences for individual resilience or susceptibility to pathophysiological change induced by stressors in later life, with potential translational significance for sex bias commonly found in disorders involving dysfunction of the mesocorticolimbic dopaminergic systems. These findings highlight the urgent need for a better understanding of the sexual dimorphism in the VTA if we are to improve strategies for the prevention and

  9. Global electrosensory oscillations enhance directional responses of midbrain neurons in eigenmannia.

    PubMed

    Ramcharitar, J U; Tan, E W; Fortune, E S

    2006-11-01

    Eigenmannia, a genus of weakly electric fish, exhibits a specialized behavior known as the jamming avoidance response (JAR). The JAR results in a categorical difference between Eigenmannia that are in groups of conspecifics and those that are alone. Fish in groups exhibit the JAR behavior and thereby experience ongoing, global synchronous 20- to 50-Hz electrosensory oscillations, whereas solitary fish do not. Although previous work has shown that these ongoing signals do not significantly degrade electrosensory behavior, these oscillations nevertheless elicit short-term synaptic depression in midbrain circuits. Because short-term synaptic depression can have profound effects on the transmission of information through synapses, we examined the differences in intracellularly recorded responses of midbrain neurons in awake, behaving fish to moving electrosensory images under electrosensory conditions that mimic solitary fish and fish in groups. In solitary conditions, moving objects elicited Gaussian or sinusoidal postsynaptic potentials (PSPs) that commonly exhibited preferential responses to a direction of motion. Surprisingly, when the same stimulus was presented in the presence of the global oscillations, directional selectivity was increased in all neurons tested. The magnitudes of the differences in PSP amplitude for preferred and nonpreferred directions were correlated with a measure of short-term synaptic depression in both conditions. The electrosensory consequences of the JAR appear to result in an enhancement of the representation of direction of motion in midbrain neurons. The data also support a role for short-term synaptic depression in the generation and modulation of directional responses. PMID:16790600

  10. Unique responses of midbrain CART neurons in macaques to ovarian steroids.

    PubMed

    Lima, F B; Henderson, J A; Reddy, A P; Tokuyama, Y; Hubert, G W; Kuhar, M J; Bethea, C L

    2008-08-28

    CART (cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript) is a neuropeptide involved in the control of several physiological processes, such as response to psychostimulants, food intake, depressive diseases and neuroprotection. It is robustly expressed in the brain, mainly in regions that control emotional and stress responses and it is regulated by estrogen in the hypothalamus. There is a distinct population of CART neurons located in the vicinity of the Edinger-Westphal nucleus of the midbrain that also colocalize urocortin-1. The aims of this study were 1) to determine the distribution of CART immunoreactive neurons in the monkey midbrain, 2) to examine the effects of estrogen (E) and progesterone (P) on midbrain CART mRNA and peptide expression and 3) to determine whether midbrain CART neurons contain steroid receptors. Adult female rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) were spayed and either treated with placebo (OVX), estrogen alone (E), progesterone alone (P) or E+P. Animals were prepared (a) for RNA extraction followed by microarray analysis and quantitative (q) RT-PCR (n=3/group); (b) for immunohistochemical analysis of CART and CART+tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH), CART+estrogen receptors (ER) or CART+progesterone receptors (n=5/group) and (c) for Western blots (n=3/group). Both E- and E+P-administration decreased CART gene expression on the microarray and with qRT-PCR. Stereological analysis of CART immunostaining at five levels of the Edinger-Westphal nucleus indicated little effect of E or E+P administration on the area of CART immunostaining. However, P administration increased CART-immunopositive area in comparison to the OVX control group with Student's t-test, but not with ANOVA. CART 55-102 detection on Western blot was unchanged by hormone administration. ERbeta and PR were detected in CART neurons and CART fibers appeared to innervate TPH-positive serotonin neurons in the dorsal raphe. In summary, E decreased CART mRNA, but this effect did not translate to the

  11. Tuberoinfundibular dopaminergic neurons of the hypothalamus are progestin target cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sar, M.

    1986-03-01

    To find out a direct relationship between progestin target neurons and tuberoinfundibular dopaminergic neurons colocalization of /sup 3/H ORG 2058 (a synthetic progestin) and tyrosine hydroxylase, TH, antibodies were studied by combined autoradiography and immunohistochemistry. Eight 23 day-old ovariectomized and adrenalectomized rats were injected s.c. 17-beta estradiol, daily for 4 days. On the 5th day each animal was injected i.v. 1.0 ug per 100g b.w. of /sup 3/H ORG 2058. Two animals each received 1mg of unlabeled ORG 2058 15 min prior to the injection of /sup 3/H ORG 2058 to show the specificity of localization. Animals were sacrificed after 15 or 30 min, brains were dissected, frozen and processed for autoradiography. The autoradiograms were stained immunohistochemically with antibodies to TH. TH-containing cells in the arcuate nucleus and in the hypothalamic periventricular nucleus (Group A12) showed concentration of radioactivity in their nuclei, while TH cells in Group A11, A13, A14, and in the substantia nigra (Group A9), and ventral tegmental area (Group A10) did not show nuclear concentration of /sup 3/H ORG 2058. Competition studies with unlabeled ORG 2058 abolished the nuclear uptake of radioactivity in TH containing neurons. The results suggest a direct affect of progestin on tuberoinfundibular dopaminergic neurons.

  12. Parallel coding of first- and second-order stimulus attributes by midbrain electrosensory neurons.

    PubMed

    McGillivray, Patrick; Vonderschen, Katrin; Fortune, Eric S; Chacron, Maurice J

    2012-04-18

    Natural stimuli often have time-varying first-order (i.e., mean) and second-order (i.e., variance) attributes that each carry critical information for perception and can vary independently over orders of magnitude. Experiments have shown that sensory systems continuously adapt their responses based on changes in each of these attributes. This adaptation creates ambiguity in the neural code as multiple stimuli may elicit the same neural response. While parallel processing of first- and second-order attributes by separate neural pathways is sufficient to remove this ambiguity, the existence of such pathways and the neural circuits that mediate their emergence have not been uncovered to date. We recorded the responses of midbrain electrosensory neurons in the weakly electric fish Apteronotus leptorhynchus to stimuli with first- and second-order attributes that varied independently in time. We found three distinct groups of midbrain neurons: the first group responded to both first- and second-order attributes, the second group responded selectively to first-order attributes, and the last group responded selectively to second-order attributes. In contrast, all afferent hindbrain neurons responded to both first- and second-order attributes. Using computational analyses, we show how inputs from a heterogeneous population of ON- and OFF-type afferent neurons are combined to give rise to response selectivity to either first- or second-order stimulus attributes in midbrain neurons. Our study thus uncovers, for the first time, generic and widely applicable mechanisms by which parallel processing of first- and second-order stimulus attributes emerges in the brain. PMID:22514313

  13. Expression of transgenes in midbrain dopamine neurons using the tyrosine hydroxylase promoter

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Myung Sook; Hong, Seok Jong; Huh, Youngbuhm; Kim, Kwang-Soo

    2009-01-01

    Billions of neurons are interconnected in the central nervous system (CNS). Identification of specific neuronal circuit is indispensable for understanding the relationship between structure and function in the CNS. The midbrain dopamine (DA) neuron system consists of the retrorubral area (A8), the substantia nigra (SN; A9), and the ventral tegmental area (VTA; A10). We hypothesized that genetic methods using cell-type specific promoters may offer the possibility to express tracer molecules in DA neurons to facilitate neuronal tracing. To address this, we used the 2.5 kb rat tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) promoter in adenovirus or adeno-associated virus (AAV) to express tracers specifically in DA neurons. We found that stereotaxic injection of TH promoter containing adenoviral construct resulted in cell type-specific transgene expression in the noradrenaline (NA) neurons of the locus coeruleus (LC). However, it caused a significant toxicity to DA neurons in the SN. In contrast, stereotaxic injection of TH promoter containing AAV to the SN resulted in cell type-specific transgene expression in DA neurons with no detectable toxicity. Taken together, our results demonstrate that it is possible to selectively trace DA neuronal circuits in rodent brains using the TH promoter in the context of AAV. PMID:18800154

  14. Rapid dopaminergic and GABAergic modulation of calcium and voltage transients in dendrites of prefrontal cortex pyramidal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Wen-Liang; Antic, Srdjan D

    2012-01-01

    The physiological responses of dendrites to dopaminergic inputs are poorly understood and controversial. We applied dopamine on one dendritic branch while simultaneously monitoring action potentials (APs) from multiple dendrites using either calcium-sensitive dye, voltage-sensitive dye or both. Dopaminergic suppression of dendritic calcium transients was rapid (<0.5 s) and restricted to the site of dopamine application. Voltage waveforms of backpropagating APs were minimally altered in the same dendrites where dopamine was confirmed to cause large suppression of calcium signals, as determined by dual voltage and calcium imaging. The dopamine effects on dendritic calcium transients were fully mimicked by D1 agonists, partially reduced by D1 antagonist and completely insensitive to protein kinase blockade; consistent with a membrane delimited mechanism. This dopamine effect was unaltered in the presence of L-, R- and T-type calcium channel blockers. The somatic excitability (i.e. AP firing) was not affected by strong dopaminergic stimulation of dendrites. Dopamine and GABA were then sequentially applied on the same dendrite. In contrast to dopamine, the pulses of GABA prohibited AP backpropagation distally from the application site, even in neurons with natural Cl− concentration (patch pipette removed). Thus, the neocortex employs at least two distinct mechanisms (dopamine and GABA) for rapid modulation of dendritic calcium influx. The spatio-temporal pattern of dendritic calcium suppression described in this paper is expected to occur during phasic dopaminergic signalling, when midbrain dopaminergic neurons generate a transient (0.5 s) burst of APs in response to a salient event. PMID:22641784

  15. Catalpol protects dopaminergic neurons from LPS-induced neurotoxicity in mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures.

    PubMed

    Tian, Yuan-Yuan; An, Li-Jia; Jiang, Lan; Duan, Yan-Long; Chen, Jun; Jiang, Bo

    2006-12-23

    Inflammation plays an important role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Microglia, the resident immune cells in the central nervous system, are pivotal in the inflammatory reaction. Activated microglia can induce expression of inducible nitric-oxide synthase (iNOS) and release significant amounts of nitric oxide (NO) and TNF-alpha, which can damage the dopaminergic neurons. Catalpol, an iridoid glycoside, contained richly in the roots of Rehmannia glutinosa, was found to be neuroprotective in gerbils subjected to transient global cerebral ischemia. But the effect of catalpol on inflammation-mediated neurodegeneration has not been examined. In this study, microglia in mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures were activated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and the aim of the study was to examine whether catalpol could protect dopaminergic neurons from LPS-induced neurotoxicity. The results showed that catalpol significantly reduced the release of reactive oxygen species (ROS), TNF-alpha and NO after LPS-induced microglial activation. Further, catalpol attenuated LPS-induced the expression of iNOS. As determined by immunocytochemical analysis, pretreatment by catalpol dose-dependently protected dopaminergic neurons against LPS-induced neurotoxicity. These results suggest that catalpol exerts its protective effect on dopaminergic neurons by inhibiting microglial activation and reducing the production of proinflammatory factors. Thus, catalpol may possess therapeutic potential against inflammation-related neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:17049947

  16. Desire, disease, and the origins of the dopaminergic system.

    PubMed

    Sillitoe, Roy V; Vogel, Michael W

    2008-03-01

    The dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain region of the central nervous system project an extensive network of connections throughout the forebrain, including the neocortex. The midbrain-forebrain dopaminergic circuits are thought to regulate a diverse set of behaviors, from the control of movement to modulation of cognition and desire--because they relate to mood, attention, reward, and addiction. Defects in these pathways, including neurodegeneration, are implicated in a variety of psychiatric and neurological diseases, such as schizophrenia, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, drug addiction, and Parkinson disease. Based on the importance of the midbrain dopaminergic neurons to normal and pathological brain function, there is considerable interest in the molecular mechanisms that regulate their development. The goal of this short review is to outline new methods and recent advances in identifying the molecular networks that regulate midbrain dopaminergic neuron differentiation and fate. Midbrain dopaminergic neurons are descended from progenitor cells located near the ventral midline of the neural tube floor plate around the cephalic flexure. It is now clear that their initial formation is dependent on interactions between the signaling molecules Sonic hedgehog, WINGLESS 1, and FIBROBLAST growth factor 8, but there is still an extensive wider network of molecular interactions that must be resolved before the complete picture of dopaminergic neuron development can be described. PMID:18283047

  17. Electrosensory Midbrain Neurons Display Feature Invariant Responses to Natural Communication Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Aumentado-Armstrong, Tristan; Metzen, Michael G.; Sproule, Michael K. J.; Chacron, Maurice J.

    2015-01-01

    Neurons that respond selectively but in an invariant manner to a given feature of natural stimuli have been observed across species and systems. Such responses emerge in higher brain areas, thereby suggesting that they occur by integrating afferent input. However, the mechanisms by which such integration occurs are poorly understood. Here we show that midbrain electrosensory neurons can respond selectively and in an invariant manner to heterogeneity in behaviorally relevant stimulus waveforms. Such invariant responses were not seen in hindbrain electrosensory neurons providing afferent input to these midbrain neurons, suggesting that response invariance results from nonlinear integration of such input. To test this hypothesis, we built a model based on the Hodgkin-Huxley formalism that received realistic afferent input. We found that multiple combinations of parameter values could give rise to invariant responses matching those seen experimentally. Our model thus shows that there are multiple solutions towards achieving invariant responses and reveals how subthreshold membrane conductances help promote robust and invariant firing in response to heterogeneous stimulus waveforms associated with behaviorally relevant stimuli. We discuss the implications of our findings for the electrosensory and other systems. PMID:26474395

  18. Neurotrophic effects of L-DOPA in postnatal midbrain dopamine neuron/cortical astrocyte cocultures.

    PubMed

    Mena, M A; Davila, V; Sulzer, D

    1997-10-01

    L-DOPA is toxic to catecholamine neurons in culture, but the toxicity is reduced by exposure to astrocytes. We tested the effect of L-DOPA on dopamine neurons using postnatal ventral midbrain neuron/cortical astrocyte cocultures in serum-free, glia-conditioned medium. L-DOPA (50 microM) protected against dopamine neuronal cell death and increased the number and branching of dopamine processes. In contrast to embryonically derived glia-free cultures, where L-DOPA is toxic, postnatal midbrain cultures did not show toxicity at 200 microM L-DOPA. The stereoisomer D-DOPA (50-400 microM) was not neurotrophic. The aromatic amino acid decarboxylase inhibitor carbidopa (25 microM) did not block the neurotrophic effect. These data suggest that the neurotrophic effect of L-DOPA is stereospecific but independent of the production of dopamine. However, L-DOPA increased the level of glutathione. Inhibition of glutathione peroxidase by L-buthionine sulfoximine (3 microM for 24 h) blocked the neurotrophic action of L-DOPA. N-Acetyl-L-cysteine (250 microM for 48 h), which promotes glutathione synthesis, had a neurotrophic effect similar to that of L-DOPA. These data suggest that the neurotrophic effect of L-DOPA may be mediated, at least in part, by elevation of glutathione content. PMID:9326268

  19. Regional vulnerability of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons prone to degenerate in Parkinson's disease: a post-mortem study in human control subjects.

    PubMed

    Lu, Lixia; Neff, Frauke; Fischer, Daniel Alvarez; Henze, Carmen; Hirsch, Etienne C; Oertel, Wolfgang H; Schlegel, Jürgen; Hartmann, Andreas

    2006-08-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the human midbrain, which varies greatly among mesencephalic subregions. The genetic expression profiles of mesencephalic DA neurons particularly prone to degenerate during PD (nigrosome 1 within the substantia nigra pars compacta-SNpc) and those particularly resistant in the disease course (central grey substance-CGS) were compared in five control subjects by immuno-laser capture microdissection followed by RNA arbitrarily primed PCR. 8 ESTs of interest were selected for analysis by real time quantitative reverse transcription PCR. DA neurons in the CGS preferentially expressed implicated in cell survival (7 out of 8 genes selected), whereas SNpc DA neurons preferentially expressed one gene making them potentially susceptible to undergo cell death in PD. We propose that factors making CGS DA neurons more resistant may be helpful in protecting SNpc DA neurons against a pathological insult. PMID:16753304

  20. Passive and active membrane properties contribute to the temporal filtering properties of midbrain neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Fortune, E S; Rose, G J

    1997-05-15

    This study examined the contributions of passive and active membrane properties to the temporal selectivities of electrosensory neurons in vivo. The intracellular responses to time-varying (2-30 Hz) electrosensory stimulation and current injection of 27 neurons in the midbrain of the weakly electric fish Eigenmannia were recorded. Each neuron was filled with biocytin to reveal its anatomy. Neurons were divided into two biophysically distinct groups based on their frequency-dependent responses to sinusoidal current injection over the range 2-30 Hz. Fourteen neurons showed low-pass filtering, with a maximum decline in the amplitude of voltage responses of >2.6 dB (X = 4.30 dB, s = 1.10 dB) to sinusoidal current injection. These neurons also showed low-pass filtering of electrosensory information but with larger maximum declines in postsynaptic potential amplitude (X = 9.53 dB, s = 3.34 dB; n = 10). These neurons had broad dendritic arbors and relatively spiny dendrites. Five neurons showed all-pass filtering, having maximum decline in the amplitude of voltage responses of <2.0 dB (X = 1.16 dB, s = 0.61 dB). For electrosensory stimuli, however, these neurons showed low-, band-, or high-pass filtering. These neurons had small dendritic arbors and few or no spines. Voltage-dependent "active" conductances were revealed in eight neurons by using several levels of current clamp. In four of these neurons, the duration of the voltage-dependent conductances decreased in concert with the period of the electrosensory stimulus, whereas in the other four neurons the duration of the voltage-dependent conductances was relatively short (<30 msec) and nearly constant across sensory stimulation frequencies. These conductances enhanced the temporal filtering properties of neurons. PMID:9133400

  1. Estradiol Facilitates Functional Integration of iPSC-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons into Striatal Neuronal Circuits via Activation of Integrin α5β1.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Kaneyasu; Doi, Daisuke; Samata, Bumpei; Murayama, Shigeo; Tahara, Tsuyoshi; Onoe, Hirotaka; Takahashi, Jun

    2016-04-12

    For cell transplantation therapy for Parkinson's disease (PD) to be realized, the grafted neurons should be integrated into the host neuronal circuit to restore the lost neuronal function. Here, using wheat-germ agglutinin-based transsynaptic tracing, we show that integrin α5 is selectively expressed in striatal neurons that are innervated by midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons. In addition, we found that integrin α5β1 was activated by the administration of estradiol-2-benzoate (E2B) in striatal neurons of adult female rats. Importantly, we observed that the systemic administration of E2B into hemi-parkinsonian rat models facilitates the functional integration of grafted DA neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells into the host striatal neuronal circuit via the activation of integrin α5β1. Finally, methamphetamine-induced abnormal rotation was recovered earlier in E2B-administered rats than in rats that received other regimens. Our results suggest that the simultaneous administration of E2B with stem cell-derived DA progenitors can enhance the efficacy of cell transplantation therapy for PD. PMID:26997644

  2. Estradiol Facilitates Functional Integration of iPSC-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons into Striatal Neuronal Circuits via Activation of Integrin α5β1

    PubMed Central

    Nishimura, Kaneyasu; Doi, Daisuke; Samata, Bumpei; Murayama, Shigeo; Tahara, Tsuyoshi; Onoe, Hirotaka; Takahashi, Jun

    2016-01-01

    Summary For cell transplantation therapy for Parkinson's disease (PD) to be realized, the grafted neurons should be integrated into the host neuronal circuit to restore the lost neuronal function. Here, using wheat-germ agglutinin-based transsynaptic tracing, we show that integrin α5 is selectively expressed in striatal neurons that are innervated by midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons. In addition, we found that integrin α5β1 was activated by the administration of estradiol-2-benzoate (E2B) in striatal neurons of adult female rats. Importantly, we observed that the systemic administration of E2B into hemi-parkinsonian rat models facilitates the functional integration of grafted DA neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells into the host striatal neuronal circuit via the activation of integrin α5β1. Finally, methamphetamine-induced abnormal rotation was recovered earlier in E2B-administered rats than in rats that received other regimens. Our results suggest that the simultaneous administration of E2B with stem cell-derived DA progenitors can enhance the efficacy of cell transplantation therapy for PD. PMID:26997644

  3. Early-life stress increases the survival of midbrain neurons during postnatal development and enhances reward-related and anxiolytic-like behaviors in a sex-dependent fashion.

    PubMed

    Chocyk, Agnieszka; Majcher-Maślanka, Iwona; Przyborowska, Aleksandra; Maćkowiak, Marzena; Wędzony, Krzysztof

    2015-08-01

    Clinical studies have suggested that early-life stress (ELS) increases the risk of psychopathologies that are strongly associated with dysfunction of dopaminergic neurotransmission. Thus, ELS may interfere with the development and maturation of the dopaminergic system; however, the mechanisms involved in such interference are poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated the effect of ELS on the survival of specific populations of neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) during postnatal development. First, we injected bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) into pregnant rat dams on embryonic days 12, 13 and 14 to permanently label midbrain neurons. Then, after birth, the dams and litters were subjected to a maternal separation (MS) procedure to model ELS conditions. The number of BrdU+ neurons and the total number of neurons (cresyl violet+, CV+) were estimated in both male and female juvenile, adolescent, and adult rats. Moreover, sucrose preference and anxiety-like behaviors were studied during adulthood. We found that MS permanently increased the number of BrdU+ and CV+ neurons in the VTA of males. In the SNc, a temporary increase in the number of BrdU+ neurons was observed in juvenile MS males; however, only adult MS males displayed an increase in the number of CV+ neurons. Immunofluorescence analysis implied that MS affected the fate of non-dopaminergic neurons. MS males displayed anxiolytic-like behavior and an increase in sucrose preference. These results suggest that ELS induces distinct dysregulation in the midbrain circuitry of males, which may lead to sex-specific psychopathology of the reward system. PMID:25980793

  4. Transduced PEP-1-PON1 proteins regulate microglial activation and dopaminergic neuronal death in a Parkinson's disease model.

    PubMed

    Kim, Mi Jin; Park, Meeyoung; Kim, Dae Won; Shin, Min Jea; Son, Ora; Jo, Hyo Sang; Yeo, Hyeon Ji; Cho, Su Bin; Park, Jung Hwan; Lee, Chi Hern; Kim, Duk-Soo; Kwon, Oh-Shin; Kim, Joon; Han, Kyu Hyung; Park, Jinseu; Eum, Won Sik; Choi, Soo Young

    2015-09-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is an oxidative stress-mediated neurodegenerative disorder caused by selective dopaminergic neuronal death in the midbrain substantia nigra. Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) is a potent inhibitor of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) against oxidation by destroying biologically active phospholipids with potential protective effects against oxidative stress-induced inflammatory disorders. In a previous study, we constructed protein transduction domain (PTD) fusion PEP-1-PON1 protein to transduce PON1 into cells and tissue. In this study, we examined the role of transduced PEP-1-PON1 protein in repressing oxidative stress-mediated inflammatory response in microglial BV2 cells after exposure to lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Moreover, we identified the functions of transduced PEP-1-PON1 proteins which include, mitigating mitochondrial damage, decreasing reactive oxidative species (ROS) production, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) expression and protecting against 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+))-induced neurotoxicity in SH-SY5Y cells. Furthermore, transduced PEP-1-PON1 protein reduced MMP-9 expression and protected against dopaminergic neuronal cell death in a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced PD mice model. Taken together, these results suggest a promising therapeutic application of PEP-1-PON1 proteins against PD and other inflammation and oxidative stress-related neuronal diseases. PMID:26117230

  5. In actio optophysiological analyses reveal functional diversification of dopaminergic neurons in the nematode C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Tanimoto, Yuki; Zheng, Ying Grace; Fei, Xianfeng; Fujie, Yukako; Hashimoto, Koichi; Kimura, Koutarou D

    2016-01-01

    Many neuronal groups such as dopamine-releasing (dopaminergic) neurons are functionally divergent, although the details of such divergence are not well understood. Dopamine in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans modulates various neural functions and is released from four left-right pairs of neurons. The terminal identities of these dopaminergic neurons are regulated by the same genetic program, and previous studies have suggested that they are functionally redundant. In this study, however, we show functional divergence within the dopaminergic neurons of C. elegans. Because dopaminergic neurons of the animals were supposedly activated by mechanical stimulus upon entry into a lawn of their food bacteria, we developed a novel integrated microscope system that can auto-track a freely-moving (in actio) C. elegans to individually monitor and stimulate the neuronal activities of multiple neurons. We found that only head-dorsal pair of dopaminergic neurons (CEPD), but not head-ventral or posterior pairs, were preferentially activated upon food entry. In addition, the optogenetic activation of CEPD neurons alone exhibited effects similar to those observed upon food entry. Thus, our results demonstrated functional divergence in the genetically similar dopaminergic neurons, which may provide a new entry point toward understanding functional diversity of neurons beyond genetic terminal identification. PMID:27193056

  6. In actio optophysiological analyses reveal functional diversification of dopaminergic neurons in the nematode C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Tanimoto, Yuki; Zheng, Ying Grace; Fei, Xianfeng; Fujie, Yukako; Hashimoto, Koichi; Kimura, Koutarou D.

    2016-01-01

    Many neuronal groups such as dopamine-releasing (dopaminergic) neurons are functionally divergent, although the details of such divergence are not well understood. Dopamine in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans modulates various neural functions and is released from four left-right pairs of neurons. The terminal identities of these dopaminergic neurons are regulated by the same genetic program, and previous studies have suggested that they are functionally redundant. In this study, however, we show functional divergence within the dopaminergic neurons of C. elegans. Because dopaminergic neurons of the animals were supposedly activated by mechanical stimulus upon entry into a lawn of their food bacteria, we developed a novel integrated microscope system that can auto-track a freely-moving (in actio) C. elegans to individually monitor and stimulate the neuronal activities of multiple neurons. We found that only head-dorsal pair of dopaminergic neurons (CEPD), but not head-ventral or posterior pairs, were preferentially activated upon food entry. In addition, the optogenetic activation of CEPD neurons alone exhibited effects similar to those observed upon food entry. Thus, our results demonstrated functional divergence in the genetically similar dopaminergic neurons, which may provide a new entry point toward understanding functional diversity of neurons beyond genetic terminal identification. PMID:27193056

  7. In actio optophysiological analyses reveal functional diversification of dopaminergic neurons in the nematode C. elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanimoto, Yuki; Zheng, Ying Grace; Fei, Xianfeng; Fujie, Yukako; Hashimoto, Koichi; Kimura, Koutarou D.

    2016-05-01

    Many neuronal groups such as dopamine-releasing (dopaminergic) neurons are functionally divergent, although the details of such divergence are not well understood. Dopamine in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans modulates various neural functions and is released from four left-right pairs of neurons. The terminal identities of these dopaminergic neurons are regulated by the same genetic program, and previous studies have suggested that they are functionally redundant. In this study, however, we show functional divergence within the dopaminergic neurons of C. elegans. Because dopaminergic neurons of the animals were supposedly activated by mechanical stimulus upon entry into a lawn of their food bacteria, we developed a novel integrated microscope system that can auto-track a freely-moving (in actio) C. elegans to individually monitor and stimulate the neuronal activities of multiple neurons. We found that only head-dorsal pair of dopaminergic neurons (CEPD), but not head-ventral or posterior pairs, were preferentially activated upon food entry. In addition, the optogenetic activation of CEPD neurons alone exhibited effects similar to those observed upon food entry. Thus, our results demonstrated functional divergence in the genetically similar dopaminergic neurons, which may provide a new entry point toward understanding functional diversity of neurons beyond genetic terminal identification.

  8. Electric signals regulate directional migration of ventral midbrain derived dopaminergic neural progenitor cells via Wnt/GSK3β signaling.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jia; Zhu, Bangfu; Zhang, Gaofeng; Wang, Jian; Tian, Weiming; Ju, Gong; Wei, Xiaoqing; Song, Bing

    2015-01-01

    Neural progenitor cell (NPC) replacement therapy is a promising treatment for neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's disease (PD). It requires a controlled directional migration and integration of NPCs, for example dopaminergic (DA) progenitor cells, into the damaged host brain tissue. There is, however, only limited understanding of how to regulate the directed migration of NPCs to the diseased or damaged brain tissues for repair and regeneration. The aims of this study are to explore the possibility of using a physiological level of electrical stimulation to regulate the directed migration of ventral midbrain NPCs (NPCs(vm)), and to investigate their potential regulation via GSK3β and associated downstream effectors. We tested the effects of direct-current (DC) electric fields (EFs) on the migration behavior of the NPCs(vm). A DC EF induced directional cell migration toward the cathode, namely electrotaxis. Reversal of the EF polarity triggered a sharp reversal of the NPC(vm) electrotaxis. The electrotactic response was both time and EF voltage dependent. Pharmacologically inhibiting the canonical Wnt/GSK3β pathway significantly reduced the electrotactic response of NPCs(vm), which is associated with the down-regulation of GSK3β phosphorylation, β-catenin activation and CLASP2 expression. This was further proved by RNA interference of GSK3β, which also showed a significantly reduced electrotactic response in association with reduced β-catenin activation and CLASP2 expression. In comparison, RNA interference of β-catenin slightly reduced electrotactic response and CLASP2 expression. Both pharmacological inhibition of Wnt/GSK3β and RNA interference of GSK3β/β-catenin clearly reduced the asymmetric redistribution of CLASP2 and its co-localization with α-tubulin. These results suggest that Wnt/GSK3β signaling contributes to the electrotactic response of NPCs(vm) through the coordination of GSK3β phosphorylation, β-catenin activation, CLASP2

  9. A Novel Combination of Factors, Termed SPIE, which Promotes Dopaminergic Neuron Differentiation from Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Vazin, Tandis; Becker, Kevin G.; Chen, Jia; Spivak, Charles E.; Lupica, Carl R.; Zhang, Yongqing; Worden, Lila; Freed, William J.

    2009-01-01

    Background Stromal-Derived Inducing Activity (SDIA) is one of the most efficient methods of generating dopaminergic (DA) neurons from embryonic stem cells (ESC). DA neuron induction can be achieved by co-culturing ESC with the mouse stromal cell lines PA6 or MS5. The molecular nature of this effect, which has been termed “SDIA” is so far unknown. Recently, we found that factors secreted by PA6 cells provided lineage-specific instructions to induce DA differentiation of human ESC (hESC). Methodology/Principal Findings In the present study, we compared PA6 cells to various cell lines lacking the SDIA effect, and employed genome expression analysis to identify differentially-expressed signaling molecules. Among the factors highly expressed by PA6 cells, and known to be associated with CNS development, were stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1/CXCL12), pleiotrophin (PTN), insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2), and ephrin B1 (EFNB1). When these four factors, the combination of which was termed SPIE, were applied to hESC, they induced differentiation to TH-positive neurons in vitro. RT-PCR and western blot analysis confirmed the expression of midbrain specific markers, including engrailed 1, Nurr1, Pitx3, and dopamine transporter (DAT) in cultures influenced by these four molecules. Electrophysiological recordings showed that treatment of hESC with SPIE induced differentiation of neurons that were capable of generating action potentials and forming functional synaptic connections. Conclusions/Significance The combination of SDF-1, PTN, IGF2, and EFNB1 mimics the DA phenotype-inducing property of SDIA and was sufficient to promote differentiation of hESC to functional midbrain DA neurons. These findings provide a method for differentiating hESC to form DA neurons, without a requirement for the use of animal-derived cell lines or products. PMID:19672298

  10. Medium-throughput computer aided micro-island method to assay embryonic dopaminergic neuron cultures in vitro.

    PubMed

    Planken, A; Porokuokka, L L; Hänninen, A-L; Tuominen, R K; Andressoo, J-O

    2010-12-15

    In Parkinson's disease (PD) midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons degenerate and die, causing loss of motor function. Currently no therapies exist to ameliorate neurodegeneration or to restore DA neurons, although neurotrophic factors (NTFs) are promising leads. Prior in vivo studies the NTFs are routinely assessed in vitro by quantifying the survival of DA neurons from embryonic rodent midbrain cultures. Current in vitro methods are limited in terms of assay reliability, arduous workflow, low throughput, low statistical power and may obscure detection of molecules with minor yet critically important therapeutic effects. We have developed a medium-throughput, micro-island culture method. It permits analysis of 10-12 data points from a single embryo - several fold more than any previously published method - and enables comparisons of DA neurons from a single gene knockout (KO) embryo. It is computer-aided, improves statistical power and decreases the number of animals and workload per experiment. This method enhances testing capabilities of NTFs and other factors, and enables small scale screening of chemical drug libraries. We have validated the method by confirming the known effects of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and neurturin (NRTN), and demonstrated additive effects via simultaneous addition of GDNF and heparin binding growth associated molecule (HB-GAM). We also show for the first time that DA neurons isolated from GDNF receptor RET-deficient mice are still GDNF responsive, suggesting the presence of an alternative non-RET receptor for GDNF in the DA system. Finally, the method can be adapted for analyses of other low abundance neuronal systems. PMID:20951734

  11. Cellular manganese content is developmentally regulated in human dopaminergic neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Kevin K.; Lowe, Edward W., Jr.; Aboud, Asad A.; Neely, M. Diana; Redha, Rey; Bauer, Joshua A.; Odak, Mihir; Weaver, C. David; Meiler, Jens; Aschner, Michael; Bowman, Aaron B.

    2014-10-01

    Manganese (Mn) is both an essential biological cofactor and neurotoxicant. Disruption of Mn biology in the basal ganglia has been implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders, such as parkinsonism and Huntington's disease. Handling of other essential metals (e.g. iron and zinc) occurs via complex intracellular signaling networks that link metal detection and transport systems. However, beyond several non-selective transporters, little is known about the intracellular processes regulating neuronal Mn homeostasis. We hypothesized that small molecules that modulate intracellular Mn could provide insight into cell-level Mn regulatory mechanisms. We performed a high throughput screen of 40,167 small molecules for modifiers of cellular Mn content in a mouse striatal neuron cell line. Following stringent validation assays and chemical informatics, we obtained a chemical `toolbox' of 41 small molecules with diverse structure-activity relationships that can alter intracellular Mn levels under biologically relevant Mn exposures. We utilized this toolbox to test for differential regulation of Mn handling in human floor-plate lineage dopaminergic neurons, a lineage especially vulnerable to environmental Mn exposure. We report differential Mn accumulation between developmental stages and stage-specific differences in the Mn-altering activity of individual small molecules. This work demonstrates cell-level regulation of Mn content across neuronal differentiation.

  12. Oxytocin activation of neurons in ventral tegmental area and interfascicular nucleus of mouse midbrain.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yamei; Chen, Zhiheng; Tao, Huai; Li, Cunyan; Zhang, Xianghui; Tang, Aiguo; Liu, Yong

    2014-02-01

    Oxytocin (OT) was reported to affect cognitive and emotional behavior by action in ventral tegmental area (VTA) and other brain areas. However, it is still unclear how OT activates VTA and related midline nucleus. Here, using patch-clamp recording, we studied the effects of OT on neuron activity in VTA and interfascicular nucleus (IF). OT dose-dependently and selectively excited small neurons located in medial VTA and the majority of IF neurons but not large neurons in lateral VTA. We found the hyperpolarization-activated current (I(h)) and the membrane capacitance of OT-sensitive neuron were significantly smaller than those of OT-insensitive neurons. The action potential width of OT-sensitive neurons was about half that of OT-insensitive neurons. The OT effect was blocked by the OT receptor antagonist atosiban and WAY-267464 but not by tetrodotoxin, suggesting a direct postsynaptic activation of OT receptors. In addition, the phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor U73122 antagonized the depolarization by OT. Both the nonselective cation channel (NSCC) antagonist SKF96365 and the Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchanger (NCX) blocker SN-6 attenuated OT effects. These results suggested that the PLC signaling pathway coupling to NSCC and NCX contributes to the OT-mediated activation of neurons in medial VTA and IF. Taken together, our results indicate OT directly acted on medial VTA and especially IF neurons to activate NSCC and NCX via PLC. The direct activation by OT of midbrain neurons may be one mechanism underlying OT effects on social behavior. PMID:24148809

  13. Functional properties and synaptic integration of genetically labelled dopaminergic neurons in intrastriatal grafts.

    PubMed

    Sørensen, Andreas Toft; Thompson, Lachlan; Kirik, Deniz; Björklund, Anders; Lindvall, Olle; Kokaia, Merab

    2005-05-01

    Intrastriatal grafts of fetal ventral mesencephalic tissue, rich in dopaminergic neurons, can reverse symptoms in Parkinson's disease. For development of effective cell replacement therapy, other sources of dopaminergic neurons, e.g. derived from stem cells, are needed. However, the electrophysiological properties grafted cells need to have in order to induce substantial functional recovery are poorly defined. It has not been possible to prospectively identify and record from dopaminergic neurons in fetal transplants. Here we used transgenic mice expressing green fluorescent protein under control of the rat tyrosine hydroxylase promoter for whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of endogenous and grafted dopaminergic neurons. We transplanted ventral mesencephalic tissue from E12.5 transgenic mice into striatum of neonatal rats with or without lesions of the nigrostriatal dopamine system. The transplanted cells exhibited intrinsic electrophysiological properties typical of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons, i.e. broad action potentials, inward rectifying currents with characteristic 'sag', and spontaneous action potentials. The grafted dopaminergic neurons also received functional excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs from the host brain, as shown by the presence of both spontaneous and stimulation-evoked excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents. Occurrence of spontaneous excitatory and inhibitory currents was lower, and of spontaneous action potentials was higher, in neurons placed in the dopamine-depleted striatum than of those in the intact striatum. Our findings define specific electrophysiological characteristics of transplanted fetal dopaminergic neurons, and we provide the first direct evidence of functional synaptic integration of these neurons into host neural circuitries. PMID:15926926

  14. Ether-à-go-go 1 (Eag1) potassium channel expression in dopaminergic neurons of basal ganglia is modulated by 6-hydroxydopamine lesion.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, N R; Mitkovski, M; Stühmer, W; Pardo, L A; Del Bel, E A

    2012-04-01

    The ether à go-go (Eag) gene encodes the voltage-gated potassium (K(+)) ion channel Kv10.1, whose function still remains unknown. As dopamine may directly affect K(+) channels, we evaluated whether a nigrostriatal dopaminergic lesion induced by the neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) would alter Eag1-K(+) channel expression in the rat basal ganglia and related brain regions. Male Wistar rats received a microinjection of either saline or 6-OHDA (unilaterally) into the medial forebrain bundle. The extent of the dopaminergic lesion induced by 6-OHDA was evaluated by apomorphine-induced rotational behavior and by tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunoreactivity. The 6-OHDA microinjection caused a partial or complete lesion of dopaminergic cells, as well as a reduction of Eag1+ cells in a manner proportional to the extent of the lesion. In addition, we observed a decrease in TH immunoreactivity in the ipsilateral striatum. In conclusion, the expression of the Eag1-K(+)-channel throughout the nigrostriatal pathway in the rat brain, its co-localization with dopaminergic cells and its reduction mirroring the extent of the lesion highlight a physiological circuitry where the functional role of this channel can be investigated. The Eag1-K(+) channel expression in dopaminergic cells suggests that these channels are part of the diversified group of ion channels that generate and maintain the electrophysiological activity pattern of dopaminergic midbrain neurons. PMID:22048886

  15. Semaphorin 3C Released from a Biocompatible Hydrogel Guides and Promotes Axonal Growth of Rodent and Human Dopaminergic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Carballo-Molina, Oscar A; Sánchez-Navarro, Andrea; López-Ornelas, Adolfo; Lara-Rodarte, Rolando; Salazar, Patricia; Campos-Romo, Aurelio; Ramos-Mejía, Verónica; Velasco, Iván

    2016-06-01

    Cell therapy in experimental models of Parkinson's disease replaces the lost dopamine neurons (DAN), but we still need improved methods to guide dopaminergic axons (DAx) of grafted neurons to make proper connections. The protein Semaphorin 3C (Sema3C) attracts DAN axons and enhances their growth. In this work, we show that the hydrogel PuraMatrix, a self-assembling peptide-based matrix, incorporates Sema3C and releases it steadily during 4 weeks. We also tested if hydrogel-delivered Sema3C attracts DAx using a system of rat midbrain explants embedded in collagen gels. We show that Sema3C released by this hydrogel attracts DAx, in a similar way to pretectum, which is known to attract growing DAN axons. We assessed the effect of Sema3C on the growth of DAx using microfluidic devices. DAN from rat midbrain or those differentiated from human embryonic stem cells showed enhanced axonal extension when exposed to hydrogel-released Sema3C, similar to soluble Sema3C. Notably, DAN of human origin express the cognate Sema3C receptors, Neuropilin1 and Neuropilin2. These results show that PuraMatrix is able to incorporate and release Sema3C, and such delivery guides and promotes the axonal growth of DAN. This biocompatible hydrogel might be useful as a Sema3C carrier for in vivo studies in parkinsonian animal models. PMID:27174503

  16. Semaphorin 3C Released from a Biocompatible Hydrogel Guides and Promotes Axonal Growth of Rodent and Human Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Carballo-Molina, Oscar A.; Sánchez-Navarro, Andrea; López-Ornelas, Adolfo; Lara-Rodarte, Rolando; Salazar, Patricia; Campos-Romo, Aurelio; Ramos-Mejía, Verónica

    2016-01-01

    Cell therapy in experimental models of Parkinson's disease replaces the lost dopamine neurons (DAN), but we still need improved methods to guide dopaminergic axons (DAx) of grafted neurons to make proper connections. The protein Semaphorin 3C (Sema3C) attracts DAN axons and enhances their growth. In this work, we show that the hydrogel PuraMatrix, a self-assembling peptide-based matrix, incorporates Sema3C and releases it steadily during 4 weeks. We also tested if hydrogel-delivered Sema3C attracts DAx using a system of rat midbrain explants embedded in collagen gels. We show that Sema3C released by this hydrogel attracts DAx, in a similar way to pretectum, which is known to attract growing DAN axons. We assessed the effect of Sema3C on the growth of DAx using microfluidic devices. DAN from rat midbrain or those differentiated from human embryonic stem cells showed enhanced axonal extension when exposed to hydrogel-released Sema3C, similar to soluble Sema3C. Notably, DAN of human origin express the cognate Sema3C receptors, Neuropilin1 and Neuropilin2. These results show that PuraMatrix is able to incorporate and release Sema3C, and such delivery guides and promotes the axonal growth of DAN. This biocompatible hydrogel might be useful as a Sema3C carrier for in vivo studies in parkinsonian animal models. PMID:27174503

  17. Neural Differentiation in the Third Dimension: Generating a Human Midbrain.

    PubMed

    Marton, Rebecca M; Paşca, Sergiu P

    2016-08-01

    In recent years, technological improvements in three-dimensional (3D) culture systems have enabled the generation of organoids or spheroids representing a variety of tissues, including the brain. In this issue of Cell Stem Cell, Jo et al. (2016) describe a 3D culture model of the human midbrain containing dopaminergic neurons and neuromelanin. PMID:27494668

  18. Vitamin C facilitates dopamine neuron differentiation in fetal midbrain through TET1- and JMJD3-dependent epigenetic control manner.

    PubMed

    He, Xi-Biao; Kim, Mirang; Kim, Seon-Young; Yi, Sang-Hoon; Rhee, Yong-Hee; Kim, Taeho; Lee, Eun-Hye; Park, Chang-Hwan; Dixit, Shilpy; Harrison, Fiona E; Lee, Sang-Hun

    2015-04-01

    Intracellular Vitamin C (VC) is maintained at high levels in the developing brain by the activity of sodium-dependent VC transporter 2 (Svct2), suggesting specific VC functions in brain development. A role of VC as a cofactor for Fe(II)-2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases has recently been suggested. We show that VC supplementation in neural stem cell cultures derived from embryonic midbrains greatly enhanced differentiation toward midbrain-type dopamine (mDA) neurons, the neuronal subtype associated with Parkinson's disease. VC induced gain of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) and loss of H3K27m3 in DA phenotype gene promoters, which are catalyzed by Tet1 and Jmjd3, respectively. Consequently, VC enhanced DA phenotype gene transcriptions in the progenitors by Nurr1, a transcription factor critical for mDA neuron development, to be more accessible to the gene promoters. Further mechanism studies including Tet1 and Jmjd3 knockdown/inhibition experiments revealed that both the 5hmC and H3K27m3 changes, specifically in the progenitor cells, are indispensible for the VC-mediated mDA neuron differentiation. We finally show that in Svct2 knockout mouse embryos, mDA neuron formation in the developing midbrain decreased along with the 5hmC/H3k27m3 changes. These findings together indicate an epigenetic role of VC in midbrain DA neuron development. PMID:25535150

  19. A microfluidic method for dopamine uptake measurements in dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yue; Shamsi, Mohtashim H; Krastev, Dimitar L; Dryden, Michael D M; Leung, Yen; Wheeler, Aaron R

    2016-02-01

    Dopamine (DA) is a classical neurotransmitter and dysfunction in its synaptic handling underlies many neurological disorders, including addiction, depression, and neurodegeneration. A key to understanding DA dysfunction is the accurate measurement of dopamine uptake by dopaminergic neurons. Current methods that allow for the analysis of dopamine uptake rely on standard multiwell-plate based ELISA, or on carbon-fibre microelectrodes used in in vivo recording techniques. The former suffers from challenges associated with automation and analyte degradation, while the latter has low throughput and is not ideal for laboratory screening. In response to these challenges, we introduce a digital microfluidic platform to evaluate dopamine homeostasis in in vitro neuron culture. The method features voltammetric dopamine sensors with limit of detection of 30 nM integrated with cell culture sites for multi-day neuron culture and differentiation. We demonstrate the utility of the new technique for DA uptake assays featuring in-line culture and analysis, with a determination of uptake of approximately ∼32 fmol in 10 min per virtual microwell (each containing ∼200 differentiated SH-SY5Y cells). We propose that future generations of this technique will be useful for drug discovery for neurodegenerative disease as well as for a wide range of applications that would benefit from integrated cell culture and electroanalysis. PMID:26725686

  20. Antioxidants protect PINK1-dependent dopaminergic neurons in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Danling; Qian, Li; Xiong, Hui; Liu, Jiandong; Neckameyer, Wendi S.; Oldham, Sean; Xia, Kun; Wang, Jianzhi; Bodmer, Rolf; Zhang, Zhuohua

    2006-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most frequent neurodegenerative movement disorder. Mutations in the PINK1 gene are linked to the autosomal recessive early onset familial form of PD. The physiological function of PINK1 and pathological abnormality of PD-associated PINK1 mutants are largely unknown. We here show that inactivation of Drosophila PINK1 (dPINK1) using RNAi results in progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons and in ommatidial degeneration of the compound eye, which is rescued by expression of human PINK1 (hPINK1). Expression of human SOD1 suppresses neurodegeneration induced by dPINK1 inactivation. Moreover, treatment of dPINK1 RNAi flies with the antioxidants SOD and vitamin E significantly inhibits ommatidial degeneration. Thus, dPINK1 plays an essential role in maintaining neuronal survival by preventing neurons from undergoing oxidative stress, thereby suggesting a potential mechanism by which a reduction in PINK1 function leads to PD-associated neurodegeneration. PMID:16938835

  1. Effects of Oxidative Stress and Testosterone on Pro-Inflammatory Signaling in a Female Rat Dopaminergic Neuronal Cell Line.

    PubMed

    Holmes, Shaletha; Singh, Meharvan; Su, Chang; Cunningham, Rebecca L

    2016-07-01

    Parkinson's disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, is associated with oxidative stress and neuroinflammation. These pathological markers can contribute to the loss of dopamine neurons in the midbrain. Interestingly, men have a 2-fold increased incidence for Parkinson's disease than women. Although the mechanisms underlying this sex difference remain elusive, we propose that the primary male sex hormone, testosterone, is involved. Our previous studies show that testosterone, through a putative membrane androgen receptor, can increase oxidative stress-induced neurotoxicity in dopamine neurons. Based on these results, this study examines the role of nuclear factor κ B (NF-κB), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX2), and apoptosis in the deleterious effects of androgens in an oxidative stress environment. We hypothesize, under oxidative stress environment, testosterone via a putative membrane androgen receptor will exacerbate oxidative stress-induced NF-κB/COX2 signaling in N27 dopaminergic neurons, leading to apoptosis. Our data show that testosterone increased the expression of COX2 and apoptosis in dopamine neurons. Inhibiting the NF-κB and COX2 pathway with CAPE and ibuprofen, respectively, blocked testosterone's negative effects on cell viability, indicating that NF-κB/COX2 cascade plays a role in the negative interaction between testosterone and oxidative stress on neuroinflammation. These data further support the role of testosterone mediating the loss of dopamine neurons under oxidative stress conditions, which may be a key mechanism contributing to the increased incidence of Parkinson's disease in men compared with women. PMID:27167771

  2. Efficient Conversion of Spermatogonial Stem Cells to Phenotypic and Functional Dopaminergic Neurons via the PI3K/Akt and P21/Smurf2/Nolz1 Pathway.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hao; Liu, Yang; Hai, Yanan; Guo, Ying; Yang, Shi; Li, Zheng; Gao, Wei-Qiang; He, Zuping

    2015-12-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative syndrome characterized by loss of midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons. Generation of functional dopaminergic (DA) neurons is of unusual significance for treating Parkinson's disease (PD). However, direct conversion of spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) to functional DA neurons without being reprogrammed to a pluripotent status has not been achieved. Here, we report an efficient approach to obtain morphological, phenotypic, and functional DA neurons from SSCs using a specific combination of olfactory ensheathing cell-conditioned medium (OECCM) and several defined growth factors (DGF). By following the current protocol, direct conversion of SSCs (both SSC line and primary SSCs) to neural cells and DA neurons was demonstrated by expression of numerous phenotypic genes and proteins for neural cells, as well as cell morphological features. More significantly, SSCs-derived DA neurons acquired neuronal functional properties such as synapse formation, electrophysiology activity, and dopamine secretion. Furthermore, PI3K/Akt pathway and p21/Nolz1 cascades were activated whereas Smurf2 was inactivated, leading to cell cycle exit during the conversion of SSCs into DA neurons. Collectively, this study could provide sufficient neural cells from SSCs for applications in the treatment of PD and offers novel insights into mechanisms underlying neural system development from the line of germ cells. PMID:25373443

  3. Slow oscillations in two pairs of dopaminergic neurons gate long-term memory formation in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Plaçais, Pierre-Yves; Trannoy, Séverine; Isabel, Guillaume; Aso, Yoshinori; Siwanowicz, Igor; Belliart-Guérin, Ghislain; Vernier, Philippe; Birman, Serge; Tanimoto, Hiromu; Preat, Thomas

    2012-04-01

    A fundamental duty of any efficient memory system is to prevent long-lasting storage of poorly relevant information. However, little is known about dedicated mechanisms that appropriately trigger production of long-term memory (LTM). We examined the role of Drosophila dopaminergic neurons in the control of LTM formation and found that they act as a switch between two exclusive consolidation pathways leading to LTM or anesthesia-resistant memory (ARM). Blockade, after aversive olfactory conditioning, of three pairs of dopaminergic neurons projecting on mushroom bodies, the olfactory memory center, enhanced ARM, whereas their overactivation conversely impaired ARM. Notably, blockade of these neurons during the intertrial intervals of a spaced training precluded LTM formation. Two pairs of these dopaminergic neurons displayed sustained calcium oscillations in naive flies. Oscillations were weakened by ARM-inducing massed training and were enhanced during LTM formation. Our results indicate that oscillations of two pairs of dopaminergic neurons control ARM levels and gate LTM. PMID:22366756

  4. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors containing the α6 subunit contribute to ethanol activation of ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Liwang; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; McIntosh, J. Michael; Tapper, Andrew R.

    2013-01-01

    Nicotine and alcohol are often co-abused suggesting a common mechanism of action may underlie their reinforcing properties. Both drugs acutely increase activity of ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons, a phenomenon associated with reward behavior. Recent evidence indicates that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), ligand-gated cation channels activated by ACh and nicotine, may contribute to ethanol-mediated activation of VTA DAergic neurons although the nAChR subtype(s) involved has not been fully elucidated. Here we show that expression and activation of nAChRs containing the α6 subunit contribute to ethanol-induced activation of VTA DAergic neurons. In wild-type (WT) mouse midbrain sections that contain the VTA, ethanol (50 or 100 mM) significantly increased firing frequency of DAergic neurons. In contrast, ethanol did not significantly increase activity of VTA DAergic neurons in mice that do not express CHRNA6, the gene encoding the α6 nAChR subunit (α6 knock-out (KO) mice). Ethanol-induced activity in WT slices was also reduced by pre-application of the α6 subtype-selective nAChR antagonist, α-conotoxin MII[E11A]. When co-applied, ethanol potentiated the response to ACh in WT DAergic neurons; whereas co-application of ACh and ethanol failed to significantly increase activity of DAergic neurons in α6 KO slices. Finally, pre-application of α-conotoxin MII[E11A] in WT slices reduced ethanol potentiation of ACh responses. Together our data indicate that α6-subunit containing nAChRs may contribute to ethanol activation of VTA DAergic neurons. These receptors are predominantly expressed in DAergic neurons and known to be critical for nicotine reinforcement, providing a potential common therapeutic molecular target to reduce nicotine and alcohol co-abuse. PMID:23811312

  5. Essential Roles of Enteric Neuronal Serotonin in Gastrointestinal Motility and the Development/Survival of Enteric Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhishan; Chalazonitis, Alcmène; Huang, Yung-yu; Mann, J. John; Margolis, Kara Gross; Yang, Qi Melissa; Kim, Dolly O.; Côté, Francine; Mallet, Jacques; Gershon, Michael D.

    2015-01-01

    The gut contains a large 5-HT pool in enterochromaffin (EC) cells and a smaller 5-HT pool in the enteric nervous system (ENS). During development, enteric neurons are generated asynchronously. We tested hypotheses that serotonergic neurons, which arise early, affect development/survival of later-born dopaminergic, GABAergic, nitrergic, and calcitonin gene-related peptide-expressing neurons and are essential for gastrointestinal motility. 5-HT biosynthesis depends on tryptophan hydroxylase 1 (TPH1) in EC cells and on TPH2 in neurons; therefore, mice lacking TPH1 and/or TPH2 distinguish EC-derived from neuronal 5-HT. Deletion of TPH2, but not TPH1, decreased myenteric neuronal density and proportions of dopaminergic and GABAergic neurons but did not affect the extrinsic sympathetic innervation of the gut; intestinal transit slowed in mice lacking TPH2 mice, but gastric emptying accelerated. Isolated enteric crest-derived cells (ENCDCs) expressed the serotonin reuptake transporter (SERT) and 15 subtypes of 5-HT receptor. Addition of 5- HT to cultures of isolated ENCDCs promoted total and dopaminergic neuronal development. Rings of SERT-immunoreactive terminal axons surrounded myenteric dopaminergic neurons and SERT knock-out increased intestinal levels of dopamine metabolites, implying that enteric dopaminergic neurons receive a serotonergic innervation. Observations suggest that constitutive gastrointestinal motility depends more on neuronal than EC cell serotonin; moreover, serotonergic neurons promote development/survival of some classes of late-born enteric neurons, including dopaminergic neurons, which appear to innervate and activate in the adult ENS. PMID:21677183

  6. Nkx6-1 controls the identity and fate of red nucleus and oculomotor neurons in the mouse midbrain

    PubMed Central

    Prakash, Nilima; Puelles, Eduardo; Freude, Kristine; Trümbach, Dietrich; Omodei, Daniela; Di Salvio, Michela; Sussel, Lori; Ericson, Johan; Sander, Maike; Simeone, Antonio; Wurst, Wolfgang

    2009-01-01

    Summary Little is known about the cues controlling the generation of motoneuron populations in the mammalian ventral midbrain. We show that Otx2 provides the crucial anterior-posterior positional information for the generation of red nucleus neurons in the murine midbrain. Moreover, the homeodomain transcription factor Nkx6-1 controls the proper development of the red nucleus and of the oculomotor and trochlear nucleus neurons. Nkx6-1 is expressed in ventral midbrain progenitors and acts as a fate determinant of the Brn3a+ (also known as Pou4f1) red nucleus neurons. These progenitors are partially dorsalized in the absence of Nkx6-1, and a fraction of their postmitotic offspring adopts an alternative cell fate, as revealed by the activation of Dbx1 and Otx2 in these cells. Nkx6-1 is also expressed in postmitotic Isl1+ oculomotor and trochlear neurons. Similar to hindbrain visceral (branchio-) motoneurons, Nkx6-1 controls the proper migration and axon outgrowth of these neurons by regulating the expression of at least three axon guidance/neuronal migration molecules. Based on these findings, we provide additional evidence that the developmental mechanism of the oculomotor and trochlear neurons exhibits more similarity with that of special visceral motoneurons than with that controlling the generation of somatic motoneurons located in the murine caudal hindbrain and spinal cord. PMID:19592574

  7. Comparison of midbrain and thalamic space-specific neurons in barn owls.

    PubMed

    Pérez, María Lucía; Peña, José Luis

    2006-02-01

    Spatial receptive fields of neurons in the auditory pathway of the barn owl result from the sensitivity to combinations of interaural time (ITD) and level differences across stimulus frequency. Both the forebrain and tectum of the owl contain such neurons. The neural pathways, which lead to the forebrain and tectal representations of auditory space, separate before the midbrain map of auditory space is synthesized. The first nuclei that belong exclusively to either the forebrain or the tectal pathways are the nucleus ovoidalis (Ov) and the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICx), respectively. Both receive projections from the lateral shell subdivision of the inferior colliculus but are not interconnected. Previous studies indicate that the owl's tectal representation of auditory space is different from those found in the owl's forebrain and the mammalian brain. We addressed the question of whether the computation of spatial cues in both pathways is the same by comparing the ITD tuning of Ov and ICx neurons. Unlike in ICx, the relationship between frequency and ITD tuning had not been studied in single Ov units. In contrast to the conspicuous frequency independent ITD tuning of space-specific neurons of ICx, ITD selectivity varied with frequency in Ov. We also observed that the spatially tuned neurons of Ov respond to lower frequencies and are more broadly tuned to ITD than in ICx. Thus there are differences in the integration of frequency and ITD in the two sound-localization pathways. Thalamic neurons integrate spatial information not only within a broader frequency band but also across ITD channels. PMID:16424454

  8. Longitudinal neuronal organization of defensive reactions in the midbrain periaqueductal gray region of the rat.

    PubMed

    Depaulis, A; Keay, K A; Bandler, R

    1992-01-01

    In a previous study we investigated the intraspecific defensive reactions evoked by excitation of neurons in the intermediate third of the midbrain periaqueductal gray matter (PAG) of the rat. Experiments revealed that activation of neurons in this region of the PAG mediated: (i) backward defensive behavior, characterized by upright postures and backward movements, and (ii) reactive immobility ("freezing"), in which the rat remained immobile, but reacted with backward defensive behavior to investigative, non-aggressive contact initiated by the partner. In the present study, we aimed to extend our understanding of PAG mediation of defensive behavior by observing: (i) in a non-aggressive social interaction test, the behavioral effects of microinjections of low doses of kainic acid (40 pmol in 200 nl) made in the caudal third of the PAG; and (ii) the behavioral and cardiovascular effects of microinjections of D,L-homocysteic acid (5-10 nmol in 50-100 nl) made in the PAG of the unanesthetized decerebrate rat. Kainic acid injections into the area lateral to the midbrain aqueduct in the caudal third of the PAG evoked: (i) forward avoidance behavior, characterized by forward locomotion and occasional hop/jumps; (ii) reactive immobility ("freezing"), in which the rat remained immobile, but reacted with forward avoidance behavior to investigative, non-aggressive contact initiated by the partner; and (iii) 22-28 kHz ultrasonic vocalizations. These injections also evoked a dramatic increase in defensive responsiveness to tactile stimuli on the half of the body contralateral, but not ipsilateral, to the site of injection. Electroencephalographic measurements indicated that none of these effects were secondary to seizure activity. In the decerebrate rat, D,L-homocysteic acid injections in the caudal third of the PAG evoked forward running movements along with increased blood pressure and heart rate, the strongest effects being evoked from the region lateral to the midbrain

  9. Midbrain dopamine neurons compute inferred and cached value prediction errors in a common framework

    PubMed Central

    Sadacca, Brian F; Jones, Joshua L; Schoenbaum, Geoffrey

    2016-01-01

    Midbrain dopamine neurons have been proposed to signal reward prediction errors as defined in temporal difference (TD) learning algorithms. While these models have been extremely powerful in interpreting dopamine activity, they typically do not use value derived through inference in computing errors. This is important because much real world behavior – and thus many opportunities for error-driven learning – is based on such predictions. Here, we show that error-signaling rat dopamine neurons respond to the inferred, model-based value of cues that have not been paired with reward and do so in the same framework as they track the putative cached value of cues previously paired with reward. This suggests that dopamine neurons access a wider variety of information than contemplated by standard TD models and that, while their firing conforms to predictions of TD models in some cases, they may not be restricted to signaling errors from TD predictions. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13665.001 PMID:26949249

  10. The role of alpha-synuclein in the development of the dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area.

    PubMed

    Tarasova, T V; Lytkina, O A; Roman, A Yu; Bachurin, S O; Ustyugov, A A

    2016-01-01

    Alpha-synuclein is a presynaptic protein of vertebrates that belongs to the family of synucleins. Normal functions of synucleins remain unknown. Alpha-synuclein is one of the causative factors of the familial and idiopathic forms of Parkinson's disease (PD). The progressive loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons is characteristic of PD and the most severe damage occurs in the substantia nigra (SN). This leads to an erraticism of the synthesis and synaptic secretion of the neurotransmitters, subsequently resulting in the loss of the connections between brain areas. This work shows that alpha-synuclein is directly involved in the formation of the mature DA neurons of the midbrain at different stages of the ontogenesis and these findings are consistent with data obtained in other studies. Thus, alpha-synuclein may have a varying modulating effect on the growth dynamics and the fate of populations of DA neurons. PMID:27021360

  11. Programming of Dopaminergic Neurons by Neonatal Sex Hormone Exposure: Effects on Dopamine Content and Tyrosine Hydroxylase Expression in Adult Male Rats

    PubMed Central

    Espinosa, Pedro; Silva, Roxana A.; Sanguinetti, Nicole K.; Venegas, Francisca C.; Riquelme, Raul; González, Luis F.; Cruz, Gonzalo; Renard, Georgina M.; Moya, Pablo R.; Sotomayor-Zárate, Ramón

    2016-01-01

    We sought to determine the long-term changes produced by neonatal sex hormone administration on the functioning of midbrain dopaminergic neurons in adult male rats. Sprague-Dawley rats were injected subcutaneously at postnatal day 1 and were assigned to the following experimental groups: TP (testosterone propionate of 1.0 mg/50 μL); DHT (dihydrotestosterone of 1.0 mg/50 μL); EV (estradiol valerate of 0.1 mg/50 μL); and control (sesame oil of 50 μL). At postnatal day 60, neurochemical studies were performed to determine dopamine content in substantia nigra-ventral tegmental area and dopamine release in nucleus accumbens. Molecular (mRNA expression of tyrosine hydroxylase) and cellular (tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactivity) studies were also performed. We found increased dopamine content in substantia nigra-ventral tegmental area of TP and EV rats, in addition to increased dopamine release in nucleus accumbens. However, neonatal exposure to DHT, a nonaromatizable androgen, did not affect midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Correspondingly, compared to control rats, levels of tyrosine hydroxylase mRNA and protein were significantly increased in TP and EV rats but not in DHT rats, as determined by qPCR and immunohistochemistry, respectively. Our results suggest an estrogenic mechanism involving increased tyrosine hydroxylase expression, either by direct estrogenic action or by aromatization of testosterone to estradiol in substantia nigra-ventral tegmental area. PMID:26904299

  12. Protective effects of a polysaccharide from Spirulina platensis on dopaminergic neurons in an MPTP-induced Parkinson's disease model in C57BL/6J mice

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Fang; Lu, Jian; Zhang, Ji-guo; Xie, Jun-xia

    2015-01-01

    The present study aimed to determine whether a polysaccharide obtained from Spirulina platensis shows protective effects on dopaminergic neurons. A Parkinson's disease model was established through the intraperitoneal injection of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) in C57BL/6J mice. Prior to the MPTP injection, some mice were pretreated with intraperitoneal injections of a polysaccharide derived from Spirulina platensis once daily for 10 days. The results showed that the immunoreactive staining and mRNA expression of the dopamine transporter and tyrosine hydroxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis, in the substantia nigra, were significantly increased in mice pretreated with 800 mg/kg of the polysaccharide compared with those in MPTP-treated mice. The activities of superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase in the serum and midbrain were also increased significantly in mice injected with MPTP after pretreatment with the polysaccharide from Spirulina platensis. By contrast, the activity of monoamine oxidase B in serum and midbrain maintained unchanged. These experimental findings indicate that the polysaccharide obtained from Spirulina platensis plays a protective role against the MPTP-induced loss of dopaminergic neurons in C57BL/6J mice, and that the antioxidative properties of this polysaccharide likely underlie its neuroprotective effect. PMID:25883632

  13. Protective effects of a polysaccharide from Spirulina platensis on dopaminergic neurons in an MPTP-induced Parkinson's disease model in C57BL/6J mice.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Fang; Lu, Jian; Zhang, Ji-Guo; Xie, Jun-Xia

    2015-02-01

    The present study aimed to determine whether a polysaccharide obtained from Spirulina platensis shows protective effects on dopaminergic neurons. A Parkinson's disease model was established through the intraperitoneal injection of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) in C57BL/6J mice. Prior to the MPTP injection, some mice were pretreated with intraperitoneal injections of a polysaccharide derived from Spirulina platensis once daily for 10 days. The results showed that the immunoreactive staining and mRNA expression of the dopamine transporter and tyrosine hydroxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis, in the substantia nigra, were significantly increased in mice pretreated with 800 mg/kg of the polysaccharide compared with those in MPTP-treated mice. The activities of superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase in the serum and midbrain were also increased significantly in mice injected with MPTP after pretreatment with the polysaccharide from Spirulina platensis. By contrast, the activity of monoamine oxidase B in serum and midbrain maintained unchanged. These experimental findings indicate that the polysaccharide obtained from Spirulina platensis plays a protective role against the MPTP-induced loss of dopaminergic neurons in C57BL/6J mice, and that the antioxidative properties of this polysaccharide likely underlie its neuroprotective effect. PMID:25883632

  14. Sweet Taste and Nutrient Value Subdivide Rewarding Dopaminergic Neurons in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Huetteroth, Wolf; Perisse, Emmanuel; Lin, Suewei; Klappenbach, Martín; Burke, Christopher; Waddell, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Summary Dopaminergic neurons provide reward learning signals in mammals and insects [1–4]. Recent work in Drosophila has demonstrated that water-reinforcing dopaminergic neurons are different to those for nutritious sugars [5]. Here, we tested whether the sweet taste and nutrient properties of sugar reinforcement further subdivide the fly reward system. We found that dopaminergic neurons expressing the OAMB octopamine receptor [6] specifically convey the short-term reinforcing effects of sweet taste [4]. These dopaminergic neurons project to the β′2 and γ4 regions of the mushroom body lobes. In contrast, nutrient-dependent long-term memory requires different dopaminergic neurons that project to the γ5b regions, and it can be artificially reinforced by those projecting to the β lobe and adjacent α1 region. Surprisingly, whereas artificial implantation and expression of short-term memory occur in satiated flies, formation and expression of artificial long-term memory require flies to be hungry. These studies suggest that short-term and long-term sugar memories have different physiological constraints. They also demonstrate further functional heterogeneity within the rewarding dopaminergic neuron population. PMID:25728694

  15. Sweet taste and nutrient value subdivide rewarding dopaminergic neurons in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Huetteroth, Wolf; Perisse, Emmanuel; Lin, Suewei; Klappenbach, Martín; Burke, Christopher; Waddell, Scott

    2015-03-16

    Dopaminergic neurons provide reward learning signals in mammals and insects [1-4]. Recent work in Drosophila has demonstrated that water-reinforcing dopaminergic neurons are different to those for nutritious sugars [5]. Here, we tested whether the sweet taste and nutrient properties of sugar reinforcement further subdivide the fly reward system. We found that dopaminergic neurons expressing the OAMB octopamine receptor [6] specifically convey the short-term reinforcing effects of sweet taste [4]. These dopaminergic neurons project to the β'2 and γ4 regions of the mushroom body lobes. In contrast, nutrient-dependent long-term memory requires different dopaminergic neurons that project to the γ5b regions, and it can be artificially reinforced by those projecting to the β lobe and adjacent α1 region. Surprisingly, whereas artificial implantation and expression of short-term memory occur in satiated flies, formation and expression of artificial long-term memory require flies to be hungry. These studies suggest that short-term and long-term sugar memories have different physiological constraints. They also demonstrate further functional heterogeneity within the rewarding dopaminergic neuron population. PMID:25728694

  16. Accumulation of mitochondrial DNA deletions within dopaminergic neurons triggers neuroprotective mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Perier, Celine; Bender, Andreas; García-Arumí, Elena; Melià, Ma Jesus; Bové, Jordi; Laub, Christoph; Klopstock, Thomas; Elstner, Matthias; Mounsey, Ross B; Teismann, Peter; Prolla, Tomas; Andreu, Antoni L; Vila, Miquel

    2013-08-01

    Acquired alterations in mitochondrial DNA are believed to play a pathogenic role in Parkinson's disease. In particular, accumulation of mitochondrial DNA deletions has been observed in substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons from patients with Parkinson's disease and aged individuals. Also, mutations in mitochondrial DNA polymerase gamma result in multiple mitochondrial DNA deletions that can be associated with levodopa-responsive parkinsonism and severe substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurodegeneration. However, whether mitochondrial DNA deletions play a causative role in the demise of dopaminergic neurons remains unknown. Here we assessed the potential pathogenic effects of mitochondrial DNA deletions on the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system by using mutant mice possessing a proofreading-deficient form of mitochondrial DNA polymerase gamma (POLGD257A), which results in a time-dependent accumulation of mitochondrial DNA deletions in several tissues, including the brain. In these animals, we assessed the occurrence of mitochondrial DNA deletions within individual substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons, by laser capture microdissection and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, and determined the potential deleterious effects of such mitochondrial DNA alterations on mitochondrial function and dopaminergic neuronal integrity, by cytochrome c oxidase histochemistry and quantitative morphology. Nigral dopaminergic neurons from POLGD257A mice accumulate mitochondrial DNA deletions to a similar extent (∼40-60%) as patients with Parkinson's disease and aged individuals. Despite such high levels of mitochondrial DNA deletions, the majority of substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons from these animals did not exhibit mitochondrial dysfunction or degeneration. Only a few individual substantia nigra pars compacta neurons appeared as cytochrome c oxidase-negative, which exhibited higher levels of mitochondrial DNA

  17. The effect of different durations of morphine exposure on mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons in morphine dependent rats.

    PubMed

    Shi, Weibo; Ma, Chunling; Qi, Qian; Liu, Lizhe; Bi, Haitao; Cong, Bin; Li, Yingmin

    2015-12-01

    Mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons are heavily involved in the development of drug dependence. Thyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis, plays an important role in the survival of dopaminergic neurons. Therefore, this study investigated TH changes in dopaminergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and substantia nigra (SN), as well as the morphine effects on dopaminergic neurons induced by different durations of morphine dependence. Models of morphine dependence were established in rats, and paraffin-embedded sections, immunohistochemistry and western blotting were used to observe the changes in the expression of TH protein. Fluoro-Jade B staining was used to detect degeneration and necrosis, and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end-labeling (TUNEL) detected the apoptosis of mesencephalic dopaminergic nerve cells. Immunohistochemistry and western blotting showed that the number of TH positive cells and the protein levels in the VTA and SN were significantly decreased in the rats with a long period of morphine dependency. With prolonged morphine exposure, the dopaminergic nerve cells in the VTA and SN showed degeneration and necrosis, while apoptotic cells were not observed. The number of VTA and SN dopaminergic nerve cells decreased with increasing periods of morphine dependence, which was most likely attributable to the degeneration and necrosis of nerve cells induced by morphine toxicity. PMID:26386147

  18. Non-Monotonic Relation between Noise Exposure Severity and Neuronal Hyperactivity in the Auditory Midbrain.

    PubMed

    Hesse, Lara Li; Bakay, Warren; Ong, Hui-Ching; Anderson, Lucy; Ashmore, Jonathan; McAlpine, David; Linden, Jennifer; Schaette, Roland

    2016-01-01

    The occurrence of tinnitus can be linked to hearing loss in the majority of cases, but there is nevertheless a large degree of unexplained heterogeneity in the relation between hearing loss and tinnitus. Part of the problem might be that hearing loss is usually quantified in terms of increased hearing thresholds, which only provides limited information about the underlying cochlear damage. Moreover, noise exposure that does not cause hearing threshold loss can still lead to "hidden hearing loss" (HHL), i.e., functional deafferentation of auditory nerve fibers (ANFs) through loss of synaptic ribbons in inner hair cells. While it is known that increased hearing thresholds can trigger increases in spontaneous neural activity in the central auditory system, i.e., a putative neural correlate of tinnitus, the central effects of HHL have not yet been investigated. Here, we exposed mice to octave-band noise at 100 and 105 dB SPL to generate HHL and permanent increases of hearing thresholds, respectively. Deafferentation of ANFs was confirmed through measurement of auditory brainstem responses and cochlear immunohistochemistry. Acute extracellular recordings from the auditory midbrain (inferior colliculus) demonstrated increases in spontaneous neuronal activity (a putative neural correlate of tinnitus) in both groups. Surprisingly, the increase in spontaneous activity was most pronounced in the mice with HHL, suggesting that the relation between hearing loss and neuronal hyperactivity might be more complex than currently understood. Our computational model indicated that these differences in neuronal hyperactivity could arise from different degrees of deafferentation of low-threshold ANFs in the two exposure groups. Our results demonstrate that HHL is sufficient to induce changes in central auditory processing, and they also indicate a non-monotonic relationship between cochlear damage and neuronal hyperactivity, suggesting an explanation for why tinnitus might occur

  19. Non-Monotonic Relation between Noise Exposure Severity and Neuronal Hyperactivity in the Auditory Midbrain

    PubMed Central

    Hesse, Lara Li; Bakay, Warren; Ong, Hui-Ching; Anderson, Lucy; Ashmore, Jonathan; McAlpine, David; Linden, Jennifer; Schaette, Roland

    2016-01-01

    The occurrence of tinnitus can be linked to hearing loss in the majority of cases, but there is nevertheless a large degree of unexplained heterogeneity in the relation between hearing loss and tinnitus. Part of the problem might be that hearing loss is usually quantified in terms of increased hearing thresholds, which only provides limited information about the underlying cochlear damage. Moreover, noise exposure that does not cause hearing threshold loss can still lead to “hidden hearing loss” (HHL), i.e., functional deafferentation of auditory nerve fibers (ANFs) through loss of synaptic ribbons in inner hair cells. While it is known that increased hearing thresholds can trigger increases in spontaneous neural activity in the central auditory system, i.e., a putative neural correlate of tinnitus, the central effects of HHL have not yet been investigated. Here, we exposed mice to octave-band noise at 100 and 105 dB SPL to generate HHL and permanent increases of hearing thresholds, respectively. Deafferentation of ANFs was confirmed through measurement of auditory brainstem responses and cochlear immunohistochemistry. Acute extracellular recordings from the auditory midbrain (inferior colliculus) demonstrated increases in spontaneous neuronal activity (a putative neural correlate of tinnitus) in both groups. Surprisingly, the increase in spontaneous activity was most pronounced in the mice with HHL, suggesting that the relation between hearing loss and neuronal hyperactivity might be more complex than currently understood. Our computational model indicated that these differences in neuronal hyperactivity could arise from different degrees of deafferentation of low-threshold ANFs in the two exposure groups. Our results demonstrate that HHL is sufficient to induce changes in central auditory processing, and they also indicate a non-monotonic relationship between cochlear damage and neuronal hyperactivity, suggesting an explanation for why tinnitus might occur

  20. Subcellular expression and neuroprotective effects of SK channels in human dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dolga, A M; de Andrade, A; Meissner, L; Knaus, H-G; Höllerhage, M; Christophersen, P; Zischka, H; Plesnila, N; Höglinger, G U; Culmsee, C

    2014-01-01

    Small-conductance Ca2+-activated K+ channel activation is an emerging therapeutic approach for treatment of neurological diseases, including stroke, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and schizophrenia. Our previous studies showed that activation of SK channels exerted neuroprotective effects through inhibition of NMDAR-mediated excitotoxicity. In this study, we tested the therapeutic potential of SK channel activation of NS309 (25 μM) in cultured human postmitotic dopaminergic neurons in vitro conditionally immortalized and differentiated from human fetal mesencephalic cells. Quantitative RT-PCR and western blotting analysis showed that differentiated dopaminergic neurons expressed low levels of SK2 channels and high levels of SK1 and SK3 channels. Further, protein analysis of subcellular fractions revealed expression of SK2 channel subtype in mitochondrial-enriched fraction. Mitochondrial complex I inhibitor rotenone (0.5 μM) disrupted the dendritic network of human dopaminergic neurons and induced neuronal death. SK channel activation reduced mitochondrial membrane potential, while it preserved the dendritic network, cell viability and ATP levels after rotenone challenge. Mitochondrial dysfunction and delayed dopaminergic cell death were prevented by increasing and/or stabilizing SK channel activity. Overall, our findings show that activation of SK channels provides protective effects in human dopaminergic neurons, likely via activation of both membrane and mitochondrial SK channels. Thus, SK channels are promising therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease, where dopaminergic cell loss is associated with progression of the disease. PMID:24434522

  1. A Wnt1 regulated Frizzled-1/β-Catenin signaling pathway as a candidate regulatory circuit controlling mesencephalic dopaminergic neuron-astrocyte crosstalk: Therapeutical relevance for neuron survival and neuroprotection

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Dopamine-synthesizing (dopaminergic, DA) neurons in the ventral midbrain (VM) constitute a pivotal neuronal population controlling motor behaviors, cognitive and affective brain functions, which generation critically relies on the activation of Wingless-type MMTV integration site (Wnt)/β-catenin pathway in their progenitors. In Parkinson's disease, DA cell bodies within the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) progressively degenerate, with causes and mechanisms poorly understood. Emerging evidence suggests that Wnt signaling via Frizzled (Fzd) receptors may play a role in different degenerative states, but little is known about Wnt signaling in the adult midbrain. Using in vitro and in vivo model systems of DA degeneration, along with functional studies in both intact and SN lesioned mice, we herein highlight an intrinsic Wnt1/Fzd-1/β-catenin tone critically contributing to the survival and protection of adult midbrain DA neurons. Results In vitro experiments identifie Fzd-1 receptor expression at a mRNA and protein levels in dopamine transporter (DAT) expressing neurons, and demonstrate the ability of exogenous Wnt1 to exert robust neuroprotective effects against Caspase-3 activation, the loss of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive (TH+) neurons and [3H] dopamine uptake induced by different DA-specific insults, including serum and growth factor deprivation, 6-hydroxydopamine and MPTP/MPP+. Co-culture of DA neurons with midbrain astrocytes phenocopies Wnt1 neuroprotective effects, whereas RNA interference-mediated knockdown of Wnt1 in midbrain astrocytes markedly reduces astrocyte-induced TH+ neuroprotection. Likewise, silencing β-catenin mRNA or knocking down Fzd-1 receptor expression in mesencephalic neurons counteract astrocyte-induced TH+ neuroprotection. In vivo experiments document Fzd-1 co-localization with TH+ neurons within the intact SNpc and blockade of Fzd/β-catenin signaling by unilateral infusion of a Fzd/β-catenin antagonist within the SN

  2. Abnormal Development of Glutamatergic Synapses Afferent to Dopaminergic Neurons of the Pink1−/− Mouse Model of Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Pearlstein, Edouard; Michel, François J.; Save, Laurène; Ferrari, Diana C.; Hammond, Constance

    2016-01-01

    In a preceding study, we showed that in adult pink1−/− mice, a monogenic animal model of Parkinson’s disease (PD), striatal neurons display aberrant electrical activities that precede the onset of overt clinical manifestations. Here, we tested the hypothesis that the maturation of dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the pink1−/− substantia nigra compacta (SNc) follows, from early stages on, a different developmental trajectory from age-matched wild type (wt) SNc DA neurons. We used immature (postnatal days P2–P10) and young adult (P30–P90) midbrain slices of pink1−/− mice expressing the green fluorescent protein in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons. We report that the developmental sequence of N-Methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) is altered in pink1−/− SNc DA neurons, starting from shortly after birth. They lack the transient episode of high NMDA receptor-mediated neuronal activity characteristic of the immature stage of wt SNc DA neurons. The maturation of the membrane resistance of pink1−/− SNc DA neurons is also altered. Collectively, these observations suggest that electrical manifestations occurring shortly after birth in SNc DA neurons might lead to dysfunction in dopamine release and constitute an early pathogenic mechanism of PD. PMID:27445695

  3. Electrical coupling between model midbrain dopamine neurons: effects on firing pattern and synchrony.

    PubMed

    Komendantov, Alexander O; Canavier, Carmen C

    2002-03-01

    The role of gap junctions between midbrain dopamine (DA) neurons in mechanisms of firing pattern generation and synchronization has not been well characterized experimentally. We modified a multi-compartment model of DA neuron by adding a spike-generating mechanism and electrically coupling the dendrites of two such neurons through gap junctions. The burst-generating mechanism in the model neuron results from the interaction of a N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced current and the sodium pump. The firing patterns exhibited by the two model neurons included low frequency (2-7 Hz) spiking, high-frequency (13-20 Hz) spiking, irregular spiking, regular bursting, irregular bursting, and leader/follower bursting, depending on the parameter values used for the permeability for NMDA-induced current and the conductance for electrical coupling. All of these firing patterns have been observed in physiological neurons, but a systematic dependence of the firing pattern on the covariation of these two parameters has not been established experimentally. Our simulations indicate that electrical coupling facilitates NMDA-induced burst firing via two mechanisms. The first can be observed in a pair of identical cells. At low frequencies (low NMDA), as coupling strength was increased, only a transition from asynchronous to synchronous single-spike firing was observed. At high frequencies (high NMDA), increasing the strength of the electrical coupling in an identical pair resulted in a transition from high-frequency single-spike firing to burst firing, and further increases led to synchronous high-frequency spiking. Weak electrical coupling destabilizes the synchronous solution of the fast spiking subsystems, and in the presence of a slowly varying sodium concentration, the desynchronized spiking solution leads to bursts that are approximately in phase with spikes that are not in phase. Thus this transitional mechanism depends critically on action potential dynamics. The second

  4. Metabotropic glutamate receptors depress glutamate-mediated synaptic input to rat midbrain dopamine neurones in vitro.

    PubMed

    Wigmore, M A; Lacey, M G

    1998-02-01

    1. Glutamate (AMPA receptor-mediated) excitatory postsynaptic potentials (e.p.s.ps.), evoked by electrical stimulation rostral to the recording site, were examined by intracellular microelectrode recording from dopamine neurones in parasagittal slices of rat ventral midbrain. 2. The e.p.s.p. was depressed by the group III metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptor agonist L-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyric acid (L-AP4; 0.01-30 microM) by up to 60% with an EC50 of 0.82 microM. The depression induced by L-AP4 (3 microM) was reversed by the group III preferring mGlu receptor antagonist, alpha-methyl-4-phosphonophenylglycine (MPPG; 250 microM). 3. The group I and II mGlu agonist, 1S,3R-aminocyclopentanedicarboxylic acid (ACPD; 3-30 microM) also depressed the e.p.s.p. in a concentration-dependent manner. The effect of ACPD (10 microM) was reversed by (+)-alpha-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine (MCPG; 1 mM; 4 cells). This effect of ACPD was also partially antagonized (by 50.3+/-15.7%, 4 cells) by MPPG (250 microM). 4. The selective agonist at group I mGlu receptors, dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG; 100 microM), decreased e.p.s.p. amplitude by 27.1+/-8.2% (7 cells), as did the group II mGlu receptor-selective agonist (1S,1R,2'R,3'R)-2-(2,3-dicarboxycyclopropyl)glycine (DCG-IV; 1 microM) by 26.7+/-4.3% (5 cells). 5. DHPG (10-100 microM) caused a depolarization of the recorded cell, as did ACPD (3-30 microM), whereas no such postsynaptic effect of either L-AP4 or DCG-IV was observed. 6. These results provide evidence for the presence of presynaptic inhibitory metabotropic glutamate autoreceptors from the mGlu receptor groups II and III on descending glutamatergic inputs to midbrain dopamine neurones. Group I mGlu receptors mediate a postsynaptic depolarization, and can also depress glutamatergic transmission, but may not necessarily be localized presynaptically. These sites represent novel drug targets for treatment of schizophrenia and movement disorders of basal ganglia origin. PMID

  5. Metabotropic glutamate receptors depress glutamate-mediated synaptic input to rat midbrain dopamine neurones in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Wigmore, Mark A; Lacey, Michael G

    1998-01-01

    Glutamate (AMPA receptor-mediated) excitatory postsynaptic potentials (e.p.s.ps.), evoked by electrical stimulation rostral to the recording site, were examined by intracellular microelectrode recording from dopamine neurones in parasagittal slices of rat ventral midbrain. The e.p.s.p. was depressed by the group III metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptor agonist L-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyric acid (L-AP4; 0.01–30 μM) by up to 60% with an EC50 of 0.82 μM. The depression induced by L-AP4 (3 μM) was reversed by the group III preferring mGlu receptor antagonist, α-methyl-4-phosphonophenylglycine (MPPG; 250 μM). The group I and II mGlu agonist, 1S,3R-aminocyclopentanedicarboxylic acid (ACPD; 3–30 μM) also depressed the e.p.s.p. in a concentration-dependent manner. The effect of ACPD (10 μM) was reversed by (+)-α-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine (MCPG; 1 mM; 4 cells). This effect of ACPD was also partially antagonized (by 50.3±15.7%, 4 cells) by MPPG (250 μM). The selective agonist at group I mGlu receptors, dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG; 100 μM), decreased e.p.s.p. amplitude by 27.1±8.2% (7 cells), as did the group II mGlu receptor-selective agonist (1S,1′R,2′R,3′R)-2-(2,3-dicarboxycyclopropyl)glycine (DCG-IV; 1 μM) by 26.7±4.3% (5 cells). DHPG (10–100 μM) caused a depolarization of the recorded cell, as did ACPD (3–30 μM), whereas no such postsynaptic effect of either L-AP4 or DCG-IV was observed. These results provide evidence for the presence of presynaptic inhibitory metabotropic glutamate autoreceptors from the mGlu receptor groups II and III on descending glutamatergic inputs to midbrain dopamine neurones. Group I mGlu receptors mediate a postsynaptic depolarization, and can also depress glutamatergic transmission, but may not necessarily be localized presynaptically. These sites represent novel drug targets for treatment of schizophrenia and movement disorders of basal ganglia origin. PMID:9517386

  6. Effect of total flavonoids from Scutellaria baicalensis on dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xue-Li; Xu, Xiao-Fan; Bu, Qing-Xia; Jin, Wei-Rong; Sun, Qian-Ru; Feng, De-Peng; Zhang, Qing-Jv; Wang, Le-Xin

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of Scutellaria baicalensis stem-leaf total flavonoid (SSTF) on the dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease (PD). The mouse model was established by intravenous injection of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). SSTF (5 mg/kg) was administered to the mice before or after MPTP injection, and the effects of SSTF on the behavior of the mice and the dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra were assessed. In addition, the level of serum malondialdehyde (MDA) was measured. Following injection of MPTP, the number of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra was decreased and the neurons appeared atrophic. In addition, the level of serum MDA in the MPTP mice increased. The mean behavioral scores and the number of dopaminergic neurons in the SSTF treatment groups were significantly higher than in the MPTP group (P<0.05), and the mean serum MDA levels were significantly lower (P<0.05). Thus, SSTF improves the behaviors and the numbers of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra in MPTP-induced PD in mice. These beneficial effects appear to be associated with the reduction in serum MDA. PMID:27446544

  7. Control of dopaminergic neuron survival by the unfolded protein response transcription factor XBP1

    PubMed Central

    Valdés, Pamela; Mercado, Gabriela; Vidal, Rene L.; Molina, Claudia; Parsons, Geoffrey; Court, Felipe A.; Martinez, Alexis; Galleguillos, Danny; Armentano, Donna; Schneider, Bernard L.; Hetz, Claudio

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson disease (PD) is characterized by the selective loss of dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). Although growing evidence indicates that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress is a hallmark of PD, its exact contribution to the disease process is not well understood. Here we report that developmental ablation of X-Box binding protein 1 (XBP1) in the nervous system, a key regulator of the unfolded protein response (UPR), protects dopaminergic neurons against a PD-inducing neurotoxin. This survival effect was associated with a preconditioning condition that resulted from induction of an adaptive ER stress response in dopaminergic neurons of the SNpc, but not in other brain regions. In contrast, silencing XBP1 in adult animals triggered chronic ER stress and dopaminergic neuron degeneration. Supporting this finding, gene therapy to deliver an active form of XBP1 provided neuroprotection and reduced striatal denervation in animals injected with 6-hydroxydopamine. Our results reveal a physiological role of the UPR in the maintenance of protein homeostasis in dopaminergic neurons that may help explain the differential neuronal vulnerability observed in PD. PMID:24753614

  8. Dopamine-Dependent Compensation Maintains Motor Behavior in Mice with Developmental Ablation of Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    DeMaro, Joseph A.; Knoten, Amanda; Hoshi, Masato; Pehek, Elizabeth; Johnson, Eugene M.; Gereau, Robert W.

    2013-01-01

    The loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and consequent depletion of striatal dopamine are known to underlie the motor deficits observed in Parkinson's disease (PD). Adaptive changes in dopaminergic terminals and in postsynaptic striatal neurons can compensate for significant losses of striatal dopamine, resulting in preservation of motor behavior. In addition, compensatory changes independent of striatal dopamine have been proposed based on PD therapies that modulate nondopaminergic circuits within the basal ganglia. We used a genetic strategy to selectively destroy dopaminergic neurons in mice during development to determine the necessity of these neurons for the maintenance of normal motor behavior in adult and aged mice. We find that loss of 90% of SNc dopaminergic neurons and consequent depletion of >95% of striatal dopamine does not result in changes in motor behavior in young-adult or aged mice as evaluated by an extensive array of motor behavior tests. Treatment of aged mutant mice with the dopamine receptor antagonist haloperidol precipitated motor behavior deficits in aged mutant mice, indicating that <5% of striatal dopamine is sufficient to maintain motor function in these mice. We also found that mutant mice exhibit an exaggerated response to l-DOPA compared with control mice, suggesting that preservation of motor function involves sensitization of striatal dopamine receptors. Our results indicate that congenital loss of dopaminergic neurons induces remarkable adaptions in the nigrostriatal system where limited amounts of dopamine in the dorsal striatum can maintain normal motor function. PMID:24155314

  9. The cellular and Genomic response of rat dopaminergic neurons (N27) to coated nanosilver

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study examined if nanosilver (nanoAg) of different sizes and coatings were differentially toxic to oxidative stress-sensitive neurons. N27 rat dopaminergic neurons were exposed (0.5-5ppm) to a set of nanoAg of different sizes (10nm, 75nm) and coatings (PVP, citrate) and thei...

  10. Progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons through TRP channel-induced cell death.

    PubMed

    Nagarajan, Archana; Ning, Ye; Reisner, Kaja; Buraei, Zafir; Larsen, Jan Petter; Hobert, Oliver; Doitsidou, Maria

    2014-04-23

    Progressive neurodegenerative diseases are among the most frequently occurring aging-associated human pathologies. In a screen for Caenorhabditis elegans mutant animals that lack their normal complement of dopaminergic neurons, we identified two strains with progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons during postembryonic life. Through whole-genome sequencing we show that both strains harbor dominant (d), gain-of-function mutations in the Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) mechanosensory channel trp-4, a member of the invertebrate and vertebrate TRPN-type of the TRP family channels. Gain-of-function mutations in TRP channels have not been previously implicated in dopaminergic neuronal degeneration. We show that trp-4(d) induces cell death in dopamine neurons through a defined, calcium-related downstream pathway. PMID:24760834

  11. Pleiotrophin over-expression provides trophic support to dopaminergic neurons in parkinsonian rats

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Pleiotrophin is known to promote the survival and differentiation of dopaminergic neurons in vitro and is up-regulated in the substantia nigra of Parkinson's disease patients. To establish whether pleiotrophin has a trophic effect on nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons in vivo, we injected a recombinant adenovirus expressing pleiotrophin in the substantia nigra of 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned rats. Results The viral vector induced pleiotrophin over-expression by astrocytes in the substantia nigra pars compacta, without modifying endogenous neuronal expression. The percentage of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive cells as well as the area of their projections in the lesioned striatum was higher in pleiotrophin-treated animals than in controls. Conclusions These results indicate that pleiotrophin over-expression partially rescues tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive cell bodies and terminals of dopaminergic neurons undergoing 6-hydroxydopamine-induced degeneration. PMID:21649894

  12. Chemogenetic ablation of dopaminergic neurons leads to transient locomotor impairments in zebrafish larvae.

    PubMed

    Godoy, Rafael; Noble, Sandra; Yoon, Kevin; Anisman, Hymie; Ekker, Marc

    2015-10-01

    To determine the impact of a controlled loss of dopaminergic neurons on locomotor function, we generated transgenic zebrafish, Tg(dat:CFP-NTR), expressing a cyan fluorescent protein-nitroreductase fusion protein (CFP-NTR) under the control of dopamine transporter (dat) cis-regulatory elements. Embryonic and larval zebrafish express the transgene in several groups of dopaminergic neurons, notably in the olfactory bulb, telencephalon, diencephalon and caudal hypothalamus. Administration of the pro-drug metronidazole (Mtz) resulted in activation of caspase 3 in CFP-positive neurons and in a reduction in dat-positive cells by 5 days post-fertilization (dpf). Loss of neurons coincided with impairments in global locomotor parameters such as swimming distance, percentage of time spent moving, as well as changes in tail bend parameters such as time to maximal bend and angular velocity. Dopamine levels were transiently decreased following Mtz administration. Recovery of some of the locomotor parameters was observed by 7 dpf. However, the total numbers of dat-expressing neurons were still decreased at 7, 12, or 14 dpf, even though there was evidence for production of new dat-expressing cells. Tg(dat:CFP-NTR) zebrafish provide a model to correlate altered dopaminergic neuron numbers with locomotor function and to investigate factors influencing regeneration of dopaminergic neurons. PMID:26118896

  13. Opposing effects of APP/PS1 and TrkB.T1 genotypes on midbrain dopamine neurons and stimulated dopamine release in vivo.

    PubMed

    Kärkkäinen, E; Yavich, L; Miettinen, P O; Tanila, H

    2015-10-01

    Brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) signaling disturbances in Alzheimer׳s disease (AD) have been demonstrated. BDNF levels fall in AD, but the ratio between truncated and full-length BDNF receptors TrkB.T1 and TrkB.TK, respectively, increases in brains of AD patients and APPswe/PS1dE9 (APP/PS1) AD model mice. Dopaminergic (DAergic) system disturbances in AD and detrimental effects of BDNF signaling deficits on DAergic system functions have also been indicated. Against this, we investigated changes in nigrostriatal dopamine (DA) system in mice carrying APP/PS1 and/or TrkB.T1 transgenes, the latter line modeling the TrkB.T1/TK ratio change in AD. Employing in vivo voltammetry, we found normal short-term DA release in caudate-putamen of mice carrying APP/PS1 or TrkB.T1 transgenes but impaired capacity to recruit more DA upon prolonged stimulation. However, mice carrying both transgenes did not differ from wild-type controls. Immunohistochemistry revealed normal density of tyrosine hydroxylase positive axon terminals in caudate-putamen in all genotypes and intact presynaptic machinery for DA release and reuptake, as shown by unchanged levels of SNAP-25, α-synuclein and DA transporter. However, we observed increased DAergic neurons in substantia nigra of TrkB.T1 mice resulting in decreased tyrosine hydroxylase per neuron in TrkB.T1 mice. The finding of unchanged nigral DAergic neurons in APP/PS1 mice largely confirms earlier reports, but the unexpected increase in midbrain DA neurons in TrkB.T1 mice is a novel finding. We suggest that both APP/PS1 and TrkB.T1 genotypes disrupt DAergic signaling, but via separate mechanisms. PMID:26168899

  14. Neonatal chlorpyrifos exposure induces loss of dopaminergic neurons in young adult rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jie; Dai, Hongmei; Deng, Yuanying; Tian, Jing; Zhang, Chen; Hu, Zhiping; Bing, Guoying; Zhao, Lingling

    2015-10-01

    Increasing epidemiological and toxicological evidence suggests that pesticides and other environmental exposures may be associated with the development of Parkinson's disease (PD). Chlorpyrifos (CPF) is a widely used organophosphorous pesticide with developmental neurotoxicity. Its neurotoxicity, notably on the monoamine system, suggests that exposure of CPF may induce dopaminergic neuronal injury. We investigated whether neonatal exposure to CPF contributes to initiation and progression of dopaminergic neurotoxicity and explored the possible underlying mechanisms. The newborn rats were administrated 5 mg/kg CPF subcutaneously from postnatal day (PND) 11 to PND 14 daily. The effect of CPF on dopaminergic neurons, microglia, astrocyte, nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) p. 65 and p. 38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways was analyzed in the substantia nigra of rats at 12h, 24h, 72 h, 16d and 46 d after exposure. CPF-treated rats exhibited significant reduction of dopaminergic neurons at 16d and 46 d after exposure, and a significant increase in the expression of microglia and astrocytes in the substantia nigra after CPF exposure. Intense activation of NF-κB p. 65 and p. 38 MAPK inflammatory signaling pathways was observed. Our findings indicate that neonatal exposure to CPF may induce long-term dopaminergic neuronal damage in the substantia nigra mediated by the activation of inflammatory response via NF-κB p. 65 and p. 38 MAPK pathways in the nigrostriatal system. PMID:26215101

  15. Metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 antagonist protects dopaminergic and noradrenergic neurons from degeneration in MPTP-treated monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Bogenpohl, James W.; Alagille, David; Delevich, Kristen; Tamagnan, Gilles; Votaw, John R.; Wichmann, Thomas; Smith, Yoland

    2011-01-01

    Degeneration of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system and of noradrenergic neurons in the locus coeruleus are important pathological features of Parkinson’s disease. There is an urgent need to develop therapies that slow down the progression of neurodegeneration in Parkinson’s disease. In the present study, we tested whether the highly specific metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 antagonist, 3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl) ethynyl] pyridine, reduces dopaminergic and noradrenergic neuronal loss in monkeys rendered parkinsonian by chronic treatment with low doses of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine. Weekly intramuscular 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine injections (0.2–0.5 mg/kg body weight), in combination with daily administration of 3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl) ethynyl] pyridine or vehicle, were performed until the development of parkinsonian motor symptoms in either of the two experimental groups (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl) ethynyl] pyridine versus 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/vehicle). After 21 weeks of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine treatment, all 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/vehicle-treated animals displayed parkinsonian symptoms, whereas none of the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl) ethynyl] pyridine-treated monkeys were significantly affected. These behavioural observations were consistent with in vivo positron emission tomography dopamine transporter imaging data, and with post-mortem stereological counts of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, as well as striatal intensity measurements of dopamine transporter and tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactivity, which were all significantly higher in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl) ethynyl] pyridine-treated animals than in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/vehicle-treated monkeys. The 3-[(2-methyl-1

  16. Directed Differentiation of Dopaminergic Neuronal Subtypes from Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Yiping; Yang, Dali; Zarnowska, Ewa D.; Du, Zhongwei; Werbel, Brian; Valliere, Chuck; Pearce, Robert A.; Thomson, James A.; Zhang, Su-Chun

    2009-01-01

    How dopamine (DA) neuronal subtypes are specified remains unknown. In this study we show a robust generation of functional DA neurons from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) through a specific sequence of application of fibroblast growth factor 8 (FGF8) and sonic hedgehog (SHH). Treatment of hESC-derived Sox1+ neuroepithelial cells with FGF8 and SHH resulted in production of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)–positive neurons that were mostly bipolar cells, coexpression with γ-aminobutyric acid, and lack of midbrain marker engrailed 1 (En1) expression. However, FGF8 treatment of precursor cells before Sox1 expression led to the generation of a similar proportion of TH+ neurons characteristic of midbrain projection DA neurons with large cell bodies and complex processes and coexpression of En1. This suggests that one mechanism of generating neuronal subtypes is temporal availability of morphogens to a specific group of precursors. The in vitro–generated DA neurons were electrophysiologically active and released DA in an activity-dependent manner. They may thus provide a renewable source of functional human DA neurons for drug screening and development of sustainable therapeutics for disorders affecting the DA system. PMID:15917474

  17. Effects of GDF5 overexpression on embryonic rat dopaminergic neurones in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    O'Sullivan, David B; Harrison, Patrick T; Sullivan, Aideen M

    2010-05-01

    Transplantation of embryonic dopaminergic neurones has shown promise for the treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD), but this approach is limited by the poor survival of the transplanted cells. Exogenous dopaminergic neurotrophic factors such as growth/differentiation factor 5 (GDF5) have been found to enhance the survival of transplanted dopaminergic neurones. However, this approach is limited by the rapid degradation of such factors in vivo; thus, methods for long-term delivery of these factors are under investigation. The present study shows, using optimised lipid-mediated transfection procedures, that overexpression of GDF5 significantly improves the survival of dopaminergic neurones in cultures of embryonic day (E) 13 rat ventral mesencephalon (VM) and protects them against 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced toxicity. In another experiment, E13 VM cells were transfected with GDF5 after 1 day in vitro (DIV), then transplanted into 6-OHDA-lesioned adult rat striata after 2 DIV. The survival of these E13 VM dopaminergic neurones after transfection and transplantation was as least as high as that of freshly dissected E14 VM dopaminergic neurones, demonstrating that transfection was not detrimental to these cells. Furthermore, GDF5-overexpressing E13 VM transplants significantly reduced amphetamine-induced rotational asymmetry in the lesioned rats. This study shows that lipid-mediated transfection in vitro prior to transplantation is a valid approach for the introduction of neurotrophic proteins such as GDF5, as well as lending further support to the potential use of GDF5 in neuroprotective therapy for PD. PMID:20349094

  18. Manganese nanoparticle activates mitochondrial dependent apoptotic signaling and autophagy in dopaminergic neuronal cells

    SciTech Connect

    Afeseh Ngwa, Hilary; Kanthasamy, Arthi; Gu, Yan; Fang, Ning; Anantharam, Vellareddy; Kanthasamy, Anumantha G.

    2011-11-15

    The production of man-made nanoparticles for various modern applications has increased exponentially in recent years, but the potential health effects of most nanoparticles are not well characterized. Unfortunately, in vitro nanoparticle toxicity studies are extremely limited by yet unresolved problems relating to dosimetry. In the present study, we systematically characterized manganese (Mn) nanoparticle sizes and examined the nanoparticle-induced oxidative signaling in dopaminergic neuronal cells. Differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies revealed that Mn nanoparticles range in size from single nanoparticles ({approx} 25 nM) to larger agglomerates when in treatment media. Manganese nanoparticles were effectively internalized in N27 dopaminergic neuronal cells, and they induced a time-dependent upregulation of the transporter protein transferrin. Exposure to 25-400 {mu}g/mL Mn nanoparticles induced cell death in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Mn nanoparticles also significantly increased ROS, accompanied by a caspase-mediated proteolytic cleavage of proapoptotic protein kinase C{delta} (PKC{delta}), as well as activation loop phosphorylation. Blocking Mn nanoparticle-induced ROS failed to protect against the neurotoxic effects, suggesting the involvement of other pathways. Further mechanistic studies revealed changes in Beclin 1 and LC3, indicating that Mn nanoparticles induce autophagy. Primary mesencephalic neuron exposure to Mn nanoparticles induced loss of TH positive dopaminergic neurons and neuronal processes. Collectively, our results suggest that Mn nanoparticles effectively enter dopaminergic neuronal cells and exert neurotoxic effects by activating an apoptotic signaling pathway and autophagy, emphasizing the need for assessing possible health risks associated with an increased use of Mn nanoparticles in modern applications. -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Mn nanoparticles

  19. A Stem Cell-Derived Platform for Studying Single Synaptic Vesicles in Dopaminergic Synapses

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Haigang; Lazarenko, Roman M.; Koktysh, Dmitry; Iacovitti, Lorraine

    2015-01-01

    The exocytotic release of dopamine is one of the most characteristic but also one of the least appreciated processes in dopaminergic neurotransmission. Fluorescence imaging has yielded rich information about the properties of synaptic vesicles and the release of neurotransmitters in excitatory and inhibitory neurons. In contrast, imaging-based studies for in-depth understanding of synaptic vesicle behavior in dopamine neurons are lagging largely because of a lack of suitable preparations. Midbrain culture has been one of the most valuable preparations for the subcellular investigation of dopaminergic transmission; however, the paucity and fragility of cultured dopaminergic neurons limits their use for live cell imaging. Recent developments in stem cell technology have led to the successful production of dopamine neurons from embryonic or induced pluripotent stem cells. Although the dopaminergic identity of these stem cell-derived neurons has been characterized in different ways, vesicle-mediated dopamine release from their axonal terminals has been barely assessed. We report a more efficient procedure to reliably generate dopamine neurons from embryonic stem cells, and it yields more dopamine neurons with more dopaminergic axon projections than midbrain culture does. Using a collection of functional measurements, we show that stem cell-derived dopamine neurons are indistinguishable from those in midbrain culture. Taking advantage of this new preparation, we simultaneously tracked the turnover of hundreds of synaptic vesicles individually using pH-sensitive quantum dots. By doing so, we revealed distinct fusion kinetics of the dopamine-secreting vesicles, which is consistent within both preparations. Significance For the use of stem cell-derived neurons in clinical applications, improved differentiation efficiency and more careful characterization of resultant cells are needed. A procedure has been refined for differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells into

  20. Degeneration of Dopaminergic Neurons Due to Metabolic Alterations and Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Song, Juhyun; Kim, Jongpil

    2016-01-01

    The rates of metabolic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), obesity, and cardiovascular disease (CVD), markedly increase with age. In recent years, studies have reported an association between metabolic changes and various pathophysiological mechanisms in the central nervous system (CNS) in patients with metabolic diseases. Oxidative stress and hyperglycemia in metabolic diseases lead to adverse neurophysiological phenomena, including neuronal loss, synaptic dysfunction, and improper insulin signaling, resulting in Parkinson’s disease (PD). In addition, several lines of evidence suggest that alterations of CNS environments by metabolic changes influence the dopamine neuronal loss, eventually affecting the pathogenesis of PD. Thus, we reviewed recent findings relating to degeneration of dopaminergic neurons during metabolic diseases. We highlight the fact that using a metabolic approach to manipulate degeneration of dopaminergic neurons can serve as a therapeutic strategy to attenuate pathology of PD. PMID:27065205

  1. Id2 IS REQUIRED FOR SPECIFICATION OF DOPAMINERGIC NEURONS DURING ADULT OLFACTORY NEUROGENESIS

    PubMed Central

    Havrda, Matthew C.; Harris, Brent T.; Mantani, Akio; Ward, Nora M.; Paolella, Brenton R.; Cuzon, Verginia C.; Yeh, Hermes H.; Israel, Mark A.

    2009-01-01

    Understanding the biology of adult neural stem cells has important implications for nervous system development and may contribute to our understanding of neurodegenerative disorders and their treatment. We have characterized the process of olfactory neurogenesis in adult mice lacking Inhibitor of DNA Binding 2 (Id2). We found a diminished olfactory bulb containing reduced numbers of granular and periglomerular neurons with a distinct paucity of dopaminergic periglomerular neurons. While no deficiency of the stem cell compartment was detectable, migrating neuroblasts in Id2−/− mutant mice prematurely undergo astroglial differentiation within a disorganized rostral migratory stream. Further, when evaluated in vitro loss of Id2 results in decreased proliferation of neural progenitors and decreased expression of the Hes1 and Mash1 transcription factors, known mediators of neuronal differentiation. These data support a novel role for sustained Id2 expression in migrating neural progenitors mediating olfactory dopaminergic neuronal differentiation in adult animals. PMID:19109490

  2. Autologous mesenchymal stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons function in parkinsonian macaques.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Takuya; Wakao, Shohei; Kitada, Masaaki; Ose, Takayuki; Watabe, Hiroshi; Kuroda, Yasumasa; Mitsunaga, Kanae; Matsuse, Dai; Shigemoto, Taeko; Ito, Akihito; Ikeda, Hironobu; Fukuyama, Hidenao; Onoe, Hirotaka; Tabata, Yasuhiko; Dezawa, Mari

    2013-01-01

    A cell-based therapy for the replacement of dopaminergic neurons has been a long-term goal in Parkinson's disease research. Here, we show that autologous engraftment of A9 dopaminergic neuron-like cells induced from mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) leads to long-term survival of the cells and restoration of motor function in hemiparkinsonian macaques. Differentiated MSCs expressed markers of A9 dopaminergic neurons and released dopamine after depolarization in vitro. The differentiated autologous cells were engrafted in the affected portion of the striatum. Animals that received transplants showed modest and gradual improvements in motor behaviors. Positron emission tomography (PET) using [11C]-CFT, a ligand for the dopamine transporter (DAT), revealed a dramatic increase in DAT expression, with a subsequent exponential decline over a period of 7 months. Kinetic analysis of the PET findings revealed that DAT expression remained above baseline levels for over 7 months. Immunohistochemical evaluations at 9 months consistently demonstrated the existence of cells positive for DAT and other A9 dopaminergic neuron markers in the engrafted striatum. These data suggest that transplantation of differentiated autologous MSCs may represent a safe and effective cell therapy for Parkinson's disease. PMID:23202734

  3. NANOMETER DIESEL EXHAUST PARTICLES ARE NEUROTOXIC TO DOPAMINERGIC NEURONS THROUGH MICROGLIAL ACTIVATION.

    EPA Science Inventory

    NANOMETER DIESEL EXHAUST PARTICLES ARE NEUROTOXIC TO DOPAMINERGIC NEURONS THROUGH MICROGLIAL ACTIVATION. M.L. Block1,2, X. Wu1, P. Zhong1, G. Li1, T. Wang1, J.S. Hong1 & B.Veronesi.2
    1The Laboratory of Pharmacology and Chemistry, NIEHS, RTP, NC and 2 National Health and Envi...

  4. Phosphodiesterase 7 Inhibition Preserves Dopaminergic Neurons in Cellular and Rodent Models of Parkinson Disease

    PubMed Central

    Morales-Garcia, Jose A.; Redondo, Miriam; Alonso-Gil, Sandra; Gil, Carmen; Perez, Concepción; Martinez, Ana; Santos, Angel; Perez-Castillo, Ana

    2011-01-01

    Background Phosphodiesterase 7 plays a major role in down-regulation of protein kinase A activity by hydrolyzing cAMP in many cell types. This cyclic nucleotide plays a key role in signal transduction in a wide variety of cellular responses. In the brain, cAMP has been implicated in learning, memory processes and other brain functions. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we show a novel function of phosphodiesterase 7 inhibition on nigrostriatal dopaminergic neuronal death. We found that S14, a heterocyclic small molecule inhibitor of phosphodiesterase 7, conferred significant neuronal protection against different insults both in the human dopaminergic cell line SH-SY5Y and in primary rat mesencephalic cultures. S14 treatment also reduced microglial activation, protected dopaminergic neurons and improved motor function in the lipopolysaccharide rat model of Parkinson disease. Finally, S14 neuroprotective effects were reversed by blocking the cAMP signaling pathways that operate through cAMP-dependent protein kinase A. Conclusions/Significance Our findings demonstrate that phosphodiesterase 7 inhibition can protect dopaminergic neurons against different insults, and they provide support for the therapeutic potential of phosphodiesterase 7 inhibitors in the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, particularly Parkinson disease. PMID:21390306

  5. Regulation of differentiation flux by Notch signalling influences the number of dopaminergic neurons in the adult brain

    PubMed Central

    Trujillo-Paredes, Niurka; Valencia, Concepción; Guerrero-Flores, Gilda; Arzate, Dulce-María; Baizabal, José-Manuel; Guerra-Crespo, Magdalena; Fuentes-Hernández, Ayari; Zea-Armenta, Iván; Covarrubias, Luis

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Notch signalling is a well-established pathway that regulates neurogenesis. However, little is known about the role of Notch signalling in specific neuronal differentiation. Using Dll1 null mice, we found that Notch signalling has no function in the specification of mesencephalic dopaminergic neural precursor cells (NPCs), but plays an important role in regulating their expansion and differentiation into neurons. Premature neuronal differentiation was observed in mesencephalons of Dll1-deficient mice or after treatment with a Notch signalling inhibitor. Coupling between neurogenesis and dopaminergic differentiation was indicated from the coincident emergence of neuronal and dopaminergic markers. Early in differentiation, decreasing Notch signalling caused a reduction in NPCs and an increase in dopaminergic neurons in association with dynamic changes in the proportion of sequentially-linked dopaminergic NPCs (Msx1/2+, Ngn2+, Nurr1+). These effects in differentiation caused a significant reduction in the number of dopaminergic neurons produced. Accordingly, Dll1 haploinsufficient adult mice, in comparison with their wild-type littermates, have a consistent reduction in neuronal density that was particularly evident in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Our results are in agreement with a mathematical model based on a Dll1-mediated regulatory feedback loop between early progenitors and their dividing precursors that controls the emergence and number of dopaminergic neurons. PMID:26912775

  6. Biochanin A protects dopaminergic neurons against lipopolysaccharide-induced damage and oxidative stress in a rat model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; He, Can; Wu, Wang-Yang; Chen, Feng; Wu, Yang-Yang; Li, Wei-Zu; Chen, Han-Qing; Yin, Yan-Yan

    2015-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease, which is characterized by loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). Accumulated evidences have suggested that oxidative stress is closely associated with the dopaminergic neurodegeneration of PD that can be protected by antioxidants. Biochanin A that is an O-methylated isoflavone in chickpea is investigated to explore its protective mechanism on dopaminergic neurons of the unilateral lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-injected rat. The results showed that biochanin A significantly improved the animal model's behavioral symptoms, prevented the loss of dopaminergic neurons and inhibited the deleterious microglia activation in the LPS-induced rats. Moreover, biochanin A inhibited nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase (NADPH oxidase) activation and malondialdehyde (MDA) production, increased superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) activities in the rat brain. These results suggested that biochanin A might be a natural candidate with protective properties on dopaminergic neurons against the PD. PMID:26394281

  7. Species-specificity of temporal processing in the auditory midbrain of gray treefrogs: interval-counting neurons.

    PubMed

    Rose, Gary J; Hanson, Jessica L; Leary, Christopher J; Graham, Jalina A; Alluri, Rishi K; Vasquez-Opazo, Gustavo A

    2015-05-01

    Interval-counting neurons (ICNs) respond after a threshold number of sound pulses have occurred with specific intervals; a single aberrant interval can reset the counting process. Female gray treefrogs, Hyla chrysoscelis and H. versicolor, discriminate against synthetic 'calls' possessing a single interpulse interval 2-3 three times the optimal value, suggesting that ICNs are important for call recognition. The calls of H. versicolor consist of pulses that are longer in duration, rise more slowly in amplitude and are repeated at a slower rate than those of H. chrysoscelis. Results of recordings from midbrain auditory neurons in these species include: (1) ICNs were found in both species and their temporal selectivity appeared to result from interplay between excitation and inhibition; (2) band-pass cells in H. versicolor were tuned to slower pulse rates than those in H. chrysoscelis; (3) ICNs that were selective for slow-rise pulse shape were found almost exclusively in H. versicolor, but fast-rise-selective neurons were found in both species, and (4) band-suppression ICNs in H. versicolor showed response minima at higher pulse rates than those in H. chrysoscelis. Selectivity of midbrain ICNs for pulse rise time and repetition rate thus correlate well with discriminatory abilities of these species that promote reproductive isolation. PMID:25764308

  8. Direct reprogramming of human fibroblasts into dopaminergic neuron-like cells

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xinjian; Li, Fang; Stubblefield, Elizabeth A; Blanchard, Barbara; Richards, Toni L; Larson, Gaynor A; He, Yujun; Huang, Qian; Tan, Aik-Choon; Zhang, Dabing; Benke, Timothy A; Sladek, John R; Zahniser, Nancy R; Li, Chuan-Yuan

    2012-01-01

    Transplantation of exogenous dopaminergic neuron (DA neurons) is a promising approach for treating Parkinson's disease (PD). However, a major stumbling block has been the lack of a reliable source of donor DA neurons. Here we show that a combination of five transcriptional factors Mash1, Ngn2, Sox2, Nurr1, and Pitx3 can directly and effectively reprogram human fibroblasts into DA neuron-like cells. The reprogrammed cells stained positive for various markers for DA neurons. They also showed characteristic DA uptake and production properties. Moreover, they exhibited DA neuron-specific electrophysiological profiles. Finally, they provided symptomatic relief in a rat PD model. Therefore, our directly reprogrammed DA neuron-like cells are a promising source of cell-replacement therapy for PD. PMID:22105488

  9. Dopaminergic Neuronal Differentiation from the Forebrain-Derived Human Neural Stem Cells Induced in Cultures by Using a Combination of BMP-7 and Pramipexole with Growth Factors

    PubMed Central

    Yang, HongNa; Wang, Jing; Wang, Feng; Liu, XiaoDun; Chen, Heng; Duan, WeiMing; Qu, TingYu

    2016-01-01

    Transplantation of dopaminergic (DA) neurons is considered to be the most promising therapeutic strategy for replacing degenerated dopamine cells in the midbrain of Parkinson's disease (PD), thereby restoring normal neural circuit function and slow clinical progression of the disease. Human neural stem cells (hNSCs) derived from fetal forebrain are thought to be the important cell sources for producing DA neurons because of their multipotency for differentiation and long-term expansion property in cultures. However, low DA differentiation of the forebrain-derived hNSCs limited their therapeutic potential in PD. In the current study, we explored a combined application of Pramipexole (PRX), bone morphogenetic proteins 7 (BMP-7), and growth factors, including acidic fibroblast factor (aFGF), forskolin, and phorbol-12-myristae-13-acetate (TPA), to induce differentiation of forebrain-derived hNSCs toward DA neurons in cultures. We found that DA neuron-associated genes, including Nurr1, Neurogenin2 (Ngn2), and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) were significantly increased after 24 h of differentiation by RT-PCR analysis (p < 0.01). Fluorescent examination showed that about 25% of cells became TH-positive neurons at 24 h, about 5% of cells became VMAT2 (vascular monoamine transporter 2)-positive neurons, and less than 5% of cells became DAT (dopamine transporter)-positive neurons at 72 h following differentiation in cultures. Importantly, these TH-, VMAT2-, and DAT-expressing neurons were able to release dopamine into cultures under both of the basal and evoked conditions. Dopamine levels released by DA neurons produced using our protocol were significantly higher compared to the control groups (P < 0.01), as examined by ELISA. Our results demonstrated that the combination of PRX, BMP-7, and growth factors was able to greatly promote differentiation of the forebrain-derived hNSCs into DA-releasing neurons. PMID:27147976

  10. Dopaminergic Neuronal Differentiation from the Forebrain-Derived Human Neural Stem Cells Induced in Cultures by Using a Combination of BMP-7 and Pramipexole with Growth Factors.

    PubMed

    Yang, HongNa; Wang, Jing; Wang, Feng; Liu, XiaoDun; Chen, Heng; Duan, WeiMing; Qu, TingYu

    2016-01-01

    Transplantation of dopaminergic (DA) neurons is considered to be the most promising therapeutic strategy for replacing degenerated dopamine cells in the midbrain of Parkinson's disease (PD), thereby restoring normal neural circuit function and slow clinical progression of the disease. Human neural stem cells (hNSCs) derived from fetal forebrain are thought to be the important cell sources for producing DA neurons because of their multipotency for differentiation and long-term expansion property in cultures. However, low DA differentiation of the forebrain-derived hNSCs limited their therapeutic potential in PD. In the current study, we explored a combined application of Pramipexole (PRX), bone morphogenetic proteins 7 (BMP-7), and growth factors, including acidic fibroblast factor (aFGF), forskolin, and phorbol-12-myristae-13-acetate (TPA), to induce differentiation of forebrain-derived hNSCs toward DA neurons in cultures. We found that DA neuron-associated genes, including Nurr1, Neurogenin2 (Ngn2), and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) were significantly increased after 24 h of differentiation by RT-PCR analysis (p < 0.01). Fluorescent examination showed that about 25% of cells became TH-positive neurons at 24 h, about 5% of cells became VMAT2 (vascular monoamine transporter 2)-positive neurons, and less than 5% of cells became DAT (dopamine transporter)-positive neurons at 72 h following differentiation in cultures. Importantly, these TH-, VMAT2-, and DAT-expressing neurons were able to release dopamine into cultures under both of the basal and evoked conditions. Dopamine levels released by DA neurons produced using our protocol were significantly higher compared to the control groups (P < 0.01), as examined by ELISA. Our results demonstrated that the combination of PRX, BMP-7, and growth factors was able to greatly promote differentiation of the forebrain-derived hNSCs into DA-releasing neurons. PMID:27147976

  11. Dopamine midbrain neurons in health and Parkinson's disease: emerging roles of voltage-gated calcium channels and ATP-sensitive potassium channels.

    PubMed

    Dragicevic, E; Schiemann, J; Liss, B

    2015-01-22

    Dopamine (DA) releasing midbrain neurons are essential for multiple brain functions, such as voluntary movement, working memory, emotion and cognition. DA midbrain neurons within the substantia nigra (SN) and the ventral tegmental area (VTA) exhibit a variety of distinct axonal projections and cellular properties, and are differentially affected in diseases like schizophrenia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and Parkinson's disease (PD). Apart from having diverse functions in health and disease states, DA midbrain neurons display distinct electrical activity patterns, crucial for DA release. These activity patterns are generated and modulated by specific sets of ion channels. Recently, two ion channels have been identified, not only contributing to these activity patterns and to functional properties of DA midbrain neurons, but also seem to render SN DA neurons particularly vulnerable to degeneration in PD and its animal models: L-type calcium channels (LTCCs) and ATP-sensitive potassium channels (K-ATPs). In this review, we focus on the emerging physiological and pathophysiological roles of these two ion channels (and their complex interplay with other ion channels), particularly in highly vulnerable SN DA neurons, as selective degeneration of these neurons causes the major motor symptoms of PD. PMID:25450964

  12. Parkin cooperates with GDNF/RET signaling to prevent dopaminergic neuron degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Meka, Durga Praveen; Müller-Rischart, Anne Kathrin; Nidadavolu, Prakash; Mohammadi, Behnam; Motori, Elisa; Ponna, Srinivas Kumar; Aboutalebi, Helia; Bassal, Mahmoud; Annamneedi, Anil; Finckh, Barbara; Miesbauer, Margit; Rotermund, Natalie; Lohr, Christian; Tatzelt, Jörg; Winklhofer, Konstanze F.; Kramer, Edgar R.

    2015-01-01

    Parkin and the glial cell line–derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) receptor RET have both been independently linked to the dopaminergic neuron degeneration that underlies Parkinson’s disease (PD). In the present study, we demonstrate that there is genetic crosstalk between parkin and the receptor tyrosine kinase RET in two different mouse models of PD. Mice lacking both parkin and RET exhibited accelerated dopaminergic cell and axonal loss compared with parkin-deficient animals, which showed none, and RET-deficient mice, in which we found moderate degeneration. Transgenic expression of parkin protected the dopaminergic systems of aged RET-deficient mice. Downregulation of either parkin or RET in neuronal cells impaired mitochondrial function and morphology. Parkin expression restored mitochondrial function in GDNF/RET-deficient cells, while GDNF stimulation rescued mitochondrial defects in parkin-deficient cells. In both cases, improved mitochondrial function was the result of activation of the prosurvival NF-κB pathway, which was mediated by RET through the phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) pathway. Taken together, these observations indicate that parkin and the RET signaling cascade converge to control mitochondrial integrity and thereby properly maintain substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons and their innervation in the striatum. The demonstration of crosstalk between parkin and RET highlights the interplay in the protein network that is altered in PD and suggests potential therapeutic targets and strategies to treat PD. PMID:25822020

  13. Dopaminergic neurons inhibit striatal output via non-canonical release of GABA

    PubMed Central

    Tritsch, Nicolas X.; Ding, Jun B.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2012-01-01

    The substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) contain the two largest populations of dopamine (DA)-releasing neurons in the mammalian brain. These neurons extend elaborate projections in striatum, a large subcortical structure implicated in motor planning and reward-based learning. Phasic activation of dopaminergic neurons in response to salient or reward-predicting stimuli is thought to modulate striatal output via the release of DA to promote and reinforce motor action1–4. Here we show that activation of DA neurons in striatal slices rapidly inhibits action potential firing in both direct-and indirect-pathway striatal projection neurons (SPNs) through vesicular release of the inhibitory transmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is released directly from dopaminergic axons but in a manner that is independent of the vesicular GABA transporter VGAT. Instead GABA release requires activity of the vesicular monoamine transporter VMAT2, which is the vesicular transporter for DA. Furthermore, VMAT2 expression in GABAergic neurons lacking VGAT is sufficient to sustain GABA release. Thus, these findings expand the repertoire of synaptic mechanisms employed by DA neurons to influence basal ganglia circuits, reveal a novel substrate whose transport is dependent on VMAT2, and demonstrate that GABA can function as a bona fide co-transmitter in monoaminergic neurons. PMID:23034651

  14. Postnatal changes in the distribution and morphology of rat substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Tepper, J M; Damlama, M; Trent, F

    1994-05-01

    Significant changes in the neurophysiology and neuropharmacology of nigral dopaminergic neurons take place in the first postnatal month. In order to correlate these changes with the postnatal development of dopaminergic neuron morphology and substantia nigra cytoarchitecture, brains from Sprague-Dawley rat pups of age postnatal days 1, 7, 14, 21 and 28 and adult rats were sectioned and processed for tyrosine hydroxylase immunocytochemistry. At postnatal day 1, pars compacta and pars reticulata were not clearly delineated; tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons and a dense plexus of fibers were scattered throughout the substantia nigra. By day 7 the density of tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons decreased markedly in ventral substantia nigra, and a dopaminergic pars compacta and a non-dopaminergic pars reticulata could be more clearly distinguished. By day 14 the substantia nigra appeared essentially as it does in the adult. Cell counts during development revealed that the number of tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons/section in both pars compacta and pars reticulata decreased significantly from postnatal day 1 to postnatal day 14, while those in pars lateralis did not change. Tyrosine hydroxylase-positive somatic size increased modestly but significantly from postnatal day 1 to day 14 as did the diameter of the proximal and distal dendrites. However, even at day 1, the morphology of tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons appeared essentially the same as in adults. Dendritic arborizations were well developed. The dendrites were non-varicose and modestly branched, with some of the longer ventrally directed dendrites passing through pars reticulata into the crus cerebri.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:7915412

  15. Noggin Over-Expressing Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts and MS5 Stromal Cells Enhance Directed Differentiation of Dopaminergic Neurons from Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Mi-Sun; Shin, Min-Seop; Lee, Soo Young; Minn, Yang-Ki; Hoh, Jeong-Kyu; Cho, Youl-Hee; Kim, Dong-Wook; Lee, Sang-Hun; Kim, Chun-Hyung; Park, Chang-Hwan

    2015-01-01

    Directed methods for differentiating human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) into dopaminergic (DA) precursor cells using stromal cells co-culture systems are already well established. However, not all of the hESCs differentiate into DA precursors using these methods. HSF6, H1, H7, and H9 cells differentiate well into DA precursors, but CHA13 and CHA15 cells hardly differentiate. To overcome this problem, we modified the differentiation system to include a co-culturing step that exposes the cells to noggin early in the differentiation process. This was done using γ-irradiated noggin-overexpressing CF1-mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEF-noggin) and MS5 stromal cells (MS5-noggin and MS5-sonic hedgehog). After directed differentiation, RT-PCR analyses revealed that engrailed-1 (En-1), Lmx1b, and Nurr1, which are midbrain DA markers, were expressed regardless of differentiation stage. Moreover, tyrosine hydroxylase (Th) and an A9 midbrain-specific DA marker (Girk2) were expressed during differentiation, whereas levels of Oct3/4, an undifferentiated marker, decreased. Immunocytochemical analyses revealed that protein levels of the neuronal markers TH and TuJ1 increased during the final differentiation stage. These results demonstrate that early noggin exposure may play a specific role in the directed differentiation of DA cells from human embryonic stem cells. PMID:26383864

  16. Neuroprotection with methylaminochroman and lazaroid of embryonic ventral mesencephalic tegmental dopaminergic neurons in cold storage.

    PubMed

    Thajeb, Peterus; Kuo, Jon-Son; Shyu, Woei-Cherng; Lin, Shinn-Zong

    2006-05-01

    Embryonic ventral mesencephalic tegmental (EVMT) neurons die off over time in cold storage at 4 degrees C in hibernation buffers (HB). Manipulation of HB conditions may improve the survival of neurons in cold storage. We examined the effect of lipid peroxidation inhibitors, a methylaminochroman (U83836E) and a lazaroid (U74389G) on the viability and survival of embryonic dopaminergic neurons in the co-culture system of embryonic striatal target (EST) cells and EVMT neurons that had been stored for 3 days at 4 degrees C in HB with or without U83836E or U74389G. One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used for analysis of data. The density of tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactive (THIR)-positive neurons was significantly higher in the groups stored in supplemented HB than in the control (HB alone; P < 0.001). The neuroprotective effect was concentration-dependent. We conclude that either U83836E or U74389G-conditioned HB exerted a concentration-dependent neuroprotective effect on embryonic dopaminergic neurons in cold storage for 3 days. Supplementation of U83836E and U74389G or other methylaminochromans and lazaroids in HB may be important for cold storage of donor neuronal cells. PMID:16678726

  17. Adult neurogenesis restores dopaminergic neuronal loss in the olfactory bulb.

    PubMed

    Lazarini, Françoise; Gabellec, Marie-Madeleine; Moigneu, Carine; de Chaumont, Fabrice; Olivo-Marin, Jean-Christophe; Lledo, Pierre-Marie

    2014-10-22

    Subventricular zone (SVZ) neurogenesis continuously provides new GABA- and dopamine (DA)-containing interneurons for the olfactory bulb (OB) in most adult mammals. DAergic interneurons are located in the glomerular layer (GL) where they participate in the processing of sensory inputs. To examine whether adult neurogenesis might contribute to regeneration after circuit injury in mice, we induce DAergic neuronal loss by injecting 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) in the dorsal GL or in the right substantia nigra pars compacta. We found that a 6-OHDA treatment of the OB produces olfactory deficits and local inflammation and partially decreases the number of neurons expressing the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) near the injected site. Blockade of inflammation by minocycline treatment immediately after the 6-OHDA administration rescued neither TH(+) interneuron number nor the olfactory deficits, suggesting that the olfactory impairments are most likely linked to TH(+) cell death and not to microglial activation. TH(+) interneuron number was restored 1 month later. This rescue resulted at least in part from enhanced recruitment of immature neurons targeting the lesioned GL area. Seven days after 6-OHDA lesion in the OB, we found that the integration of lentivirus-labeled adult-born neurons was biased: newly formed neurons were preferentially incorporated into glomerular circuits of the lesioned area. Behavioral rehabilitation occurs 2 months after lesion. This study establishes a new model into which loss of DAergic cells could be compensated by recruiting newly formed neurons. We propose that adult neurogenesis not only replenishes the population of DAergic bulbar neurons but that it also restores olfactory sensory processing. PMID:25339754

  18. Oleuropein Prevents Neuronal Death, Mitigates Mitochondrial Superoxide Production and Modulates Autophagy in a Dopaminergic Cellular Model

    PubMed Central

    Achour, Imène; Arel-Dubeau, Anne-Marie; Renaud, Justine; Legrand, Manon; Attard, Everaldo; Germain, Marc; Martinoli, Maria-Grazia

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, primarily affecting dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. There is currently no cure for PD and present medications aim to alleviate clinical symptoms, thus prevention remains the ideal strategy to reduce the prevalence of this disease. The goal of this study was to investigate whether oleuropein (OLE), the major phenolic compound in olive derivatives, may prevent neuronal degeneration in a cellular dopaminergic model of PD, differentiated PC12 cells exposed to the potent parkinsonian toxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). We also investigated OLE’s ability to mitigate mitochondrial oxidative stress and modulate the autophagic flux. Our results obtained by measuring cytotoxicity and apoptotic events demonstrate that OLE significantly decreases neuronal death. OLE could also reduce mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species resulting from blocking superoxide dismutase activity. Moreover, quantification of autophagic and acidic vesicles in the cytoplasm alongside expression of specific autophagic markers uncovered a regulatory role for OLE against autophagic flux impairment induced by bafilomycin A1. Altogether, our results define OLE as a neuroprotective, anti-oxidative and autophagy-regulating molecule, in a neuronal dopaminergic cellular model. PMID:27517912

  19. Silibinin prevents dopaminergic neuronal loss in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease via mitochondrial stabilization.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yujeong; Park, Hee Ra; Chun, Hye Jeong; Lee, Jaewon

    2015-05-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the selective loss of dopaminergic neurons in the nigrostriatal pathway. The lipophile 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) can cross the blood-brain barrier and is subsequently metabolized into toxic1-methyl-4-phenylpyridine (MPP(+) ), which causes mitochondrial dysfunction and the selective cell death of dopaminergic neurons. The present article reports the neuroprotective effects of silibinin in a murine MPTP model of PD. The flavonoid silibinin is the major active constituent of silymarin, an extract of milk thistle seeds, and is known to have hepatoprotective, anticancer, antioxidative, and neuroprotective effects. In the present study, silibinin effectively attenuated motor deficit and dopaminergic neuronal loss caused by MPTP. Furthermore, in vitro study confirmed that silibinin protects primary cultured neurons against MPP(+) -induced cell death and mitochondrial membrane disruption. The findings of the present study indicate that silibinin has neuroprotective effects in MPTP-induced models of PD rather than antioxidative or anti-inflammatory effects and that the neuroprotection afforded might be mediated by the stabilization of mitochondrial membrane potential. Furthermore, these findings suggest that silibinin protects mitochondria in MPTP-induced PD models and that it offers a starting point for the development of treatments that ameliorate the symptoms of PD. PMID:25677261

  20. Quantification of dopaminergic neuron differentiation and neurotoxicity via a genetic reporter

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Jun; Rothstein, Megan; Bennett, Theo; Zhang, Pengbo; Xia, Ninuo; Reijo Pera, Renee A.

    2016-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells provide a powerful human-genome based system for modeling human diseases in vitro and for potentially identifying novel treatments. Directed differentiation of pluripotent stem cells produces many specific cell types including dopaminergic neurons. Here, we generated a genetic reporter assay in pluripotent stem cells using newly-developed genome editing technologies in order to monitor differentiation efficiency and compare dopaminergic neuron survival under different conditions. We show that insertion of a luciferase reporter gene into the endogenous tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) locus enables rapid and easy quantification of dopaminergic neurons in cell culture throughout the entire differentiation process. Moreover, we demonstrate that the cellular assay is effective in assessing neuron response to different cytotoxic chemicals and is able to be scaled for high throughput applications. These results suggest that stem cell-derived terminal cell types can provide an alternative to traditional immortal cell lines or primary cells as a quantitative cellular model for toxin evaluation and drug discovery. PMID:27121904

  1. Oleuropein Prevents Neuronal Death, Mitigates Mitochondrial Superoxide Production and Modulates Autophagy in a Dopaminergic Cellular Model.

    PubMed

    Achour, Imène; Arel-Dubeau, Anne-Marie; Renaud, Justine; Legrand, Manon; Attard, Everaldo; Germain, Marc; Martinoli, Maria-Grazia

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, primarily affecting dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. There is currently no cure for PD and present medications aim to alleviate clinical symptoms, thus prevention remains the ideal strategy to reduce the prevalence of this disease. The goal of this study was to investigate whether oleuropein (OLE), the major phenolic compound in olive derivatives, may prevent neuronal degeneration in a cellular dopaminergic model of PD, differentiated PC12 cells exposed to the potent parkinsonian toxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). We also investigated OLE's ability to mitigate mitochondrial oxidative stress and modulate the autophagic flux. Our results obtained by measuring cytotoxicity and apoptotic events demonstrate that OLE significantly decreases neuronal death. OLE could also reduce mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species resulting from blocking superoxide dismutase activity. Moreover, quantification of autophagic and acidic vesicles in the cytoplasm alongside expression of specific autophagic markers uncovered a regulatory role for OLE against autophagic flux impairment induced by bafilomycin A1. Altogether, our results define OLE as a neuroprotective, anti-oxidative and autophagy-regulating molecule, in a neuronal dopaminergic cellular model. PMID:27517912

  2. Endogenous dynorphin protects against neurotoxin-elicited nigrostriatal dopaminergic neuron damage and motor deficits in mice

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The striato-nigral projecting pathway contains the highest concentrations of dynorphin in the brain. The functional role of this opioid peptide in the regulation of mesencephalic dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons is not clear. We reported previously that exogenous dynorphin exerts potent neuroprotective effects against inflammation-induced dopaminergic neurodegeneration in vitro. The present study was performed to investigate whether endogenous dynorphin has neuroprotective roles in vivo. Methods 1-Methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and methamphetamine (MA), two commonly used neurotoxins in rodent models of Parkinson’s disease, were administered to wild-type (Dyn+/+) and prodynorphin-deficient mice (Dyn−/−). We examined dopaminergic neurotoxicity by using an automated video tracking system, HPLC, immunocytochemistry, and reverse transcription and polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Results Treatment with MPTP resulted in behavioral impairments in both strains. However, these impairments were more pronounced in Dyn-l- than in Dyn+/+. Dyn−/− showed more severe MPTP-induced dopaminergic neuronal loss in the substantia nigra and striatum than Dyn+/+. Similarly, the levels of dopamine and its metabolites in the striatum were depleted to a greater extent in Dyn−/− than in Dyn+/+. Additional mechanistic studies revealed that MPTP treatment caused a higher degree of microglial activation and M1 phenotype differentiation in Dyn−/− than in Dyn+/+. Consistent with these observations, prodynorphin deficiency also exacerbated neurotoxic effects induced by MA, although this effect was less pronounced than that of MPTP. Conclusions The in vivo results presented here extend our previous in vitro findings and further indicate that endogenous dynorphin plays a critical role in protecting dopaminergic neurons through its anti-inflammatory effects. PMID:22695044

  3. Tetraspanin (TSP-17) Protects Dopaminergic Neurons against 6-OHDA-Induced Neurodegeneration in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Masoudi, Neda; Holmes, Alexander; Gartner, Anton

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD), the second most prevalent neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer's disease, is linked to the gradual loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. Disease loci causing hereditary forms of PD are known, but most cases are attributable to a combination of genetic and environmental risk factors. Increased incidence of PD is associated with rural living and pesticide exposure, and dopaminergic neurodegeneration can be triggered by neurotoxins such as 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). In C. elegans, this drug is taken up by the presynaptic dopamine reuptake transporter (DAT-1) and causes selective death of the eight dopaminergic neurons of the adult hermaphrodite. Using a forward genetic approach to find genes that protect against 6-OHDA-mediated neurodegeneration, we identified tsp-17, which encodes a member of the tetraspanin family of membrane proteins. We show that TSP-17 is expressed in dopaminergic neurons and provide genetic, pharmacological and biochemical evidence that it inhibits DAT-1, thus leading to increased 6-OHDA uptake in tsp-17 loss-of-function mutants. TSP-17 also protects against toxicity conferred by excessive intracellular dopamine. We provide genetic and biochemical evidence that TSP-17 acts partly via the DOP-2 dopamine receptor to negatively regulate DAT-1. tsp-17 mutants also have subtle behavioral phenotypes, some of which are conferred by aberrant dopamine signaling. Incubating mutant worms in liquid medium leads to swimming-induced paralysis. In the L1 larval stage, this phenotype is linked to lethality and cannot be rescued by a dop-3 null mutant. In contrast, mild paralysis occurring in the L4 larval stage is suppressed by dop-3, suggesting defects in dopaminergic signaling. In summary, we show that TSP-17 protects against neurodegeneration and has a role in modulating behaviors linked to dopamine signaling. PMID:25474638

  4. β-Caryophyllene, a phytocannabinoid attenuates oxidative stress, neuroinflammation, glial activation, and salvages dopaminergic neurons in a rat model of Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Ojha, Shreesh; Javed, Hayate; Azimullah, Sheikh; Haque, M Emdadul

    2016-07-01

    Parkinson disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by progressive dopaminergic neurodegeneration in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) area. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the neuroprotective effect of β-caryophyllene (BCP) against rotenone-induced oxidative stress and neuroinflammation in a rat model of PD. In the present study, BCP was administered once daily for 4 weeks at a dose of 50 mg/kg body weight prior to a rotenone (2.5 mg/kg body weight) challenge to mimic the progressive neurodegenerative nature of PD. Rotenone administration results in oxidative stress as evidenced by decreased activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, and depletion of glutathione with a concomitant rise in lipid peroxidation product, malondialdehyde. Rotenone also significantly increased pro-inflammatory cytokines in the midbrain region and elevated the inflammatory mediators such as cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in the striatum. Further, immunohistochemical analysis revealed loss of dopaminergic neurons in the SNc area and enhanced expression of ionized calcium-binding adaptor molecule-1 (Iba-1) and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), indicators of microglia activation, and astrocyte hypertrophy, respectively, as an index of inflammation. However, treatment with BCP rescued dopaminergic neurons and decreased microglia and astrocyte activation evidenced by reduced Iba-1 and GFAP expression. BCP in addition to attenuation of pro-inflammatory cytokines and inflammatory mediators such as COX-2 and iNOS, also restored antioxidant enzymes and inhibited lipid peroxidation as well as glutathione depletion. The findings demonstrate that BCP provides neuroprotection against rotenone-induced PD and the neuroprotective effects can be ascribed to its potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. PMID:27316720

  5. Differential regulation of action potential- and metabotropic glutamate receptor-induced Ca2+ signals by inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate in dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Cui, Guohong; Bernier, Brian E; Harnett, Mark T; Morikawa, Hitoshi

    2007-04-25

    Ca2+ signals associated with action potentials (APs) and metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR) activation exert distinct influences on neuronal activity and synaptic plasticity. However, it is not clear how these two types of Ca2+ signals are differentially regulated by neurotransmitter inputs in a single neuron. We investigated this issue in dopaminergic neurons of the ventral midbrain using brain slices. Intracellular Ca2+ was assessed by measuring Ca2+-sensitive K+ currents or imaging the fluorescence of Ca2+ indicator dyes. Tonic activation of metabotropic neurotransmitter receptors (mGluRs, alpha1 adrenergic receptors, and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors), attained by superfusion of agonists or weak, sustained (approximately 1 s) synaptic stimulation, augmented AP-induced Ca2+ transients. In contrast, Ca2+ signals elicited by strong, transient (50-200 ms) activation of mGluRs with aspartate iontophoresis were suppressed by superfusion of agonists. These opposing effects on Ca2+ signals were both mediated by an increase in intracellular inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) levels, because they were blocked by heparin, an IP3 receptor antagonist, and reproduced by photolytic application of IP3. Evoking APs repetitively at low frequency (2 Hz) caused inactivation of IP3 receptors and abolished IP3 facilitation of single AP-induced Ca2+ signals, whereas facilitation of Ca2+ signals triggered by bursts of APs (five at 20 Hz) was attenuated by less than half. We further obtained evidence suggesting that the psychostimulant amphetamine may augment burst-induced Ca2+ signals via both depression of basal firing and production of IP3. We propose that intracellular IP3 tone provides a mechanism to selectively amplify burst-induced Ca2+ signals in dopaminergic neurons. PMID:17460090

  6. Efficient derivation of functional dopaminergic neurons from human embryonic stem cells on a large scale.

    PubMed

    Cho, Myung-Soo; Hwang, Dong-Youn; Kim, Dong-Wook

    2008-01-01

    Cell-replacement therapy using human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) holds great promise in treating Parkinson's disease. We have recently reported a highly efficient method to generate functional dopaminergic (DA) neurons from hESCs. Our method includes a unique step, the formation of spherical neural masses (SNMs), and offers the highest yield of DA neurons ever achieved so far. In this report, we describe our method step by step, covering not only how to differentiate hESCs into DA neurons at a high yield, but also how to amplify, freeze and thaw the SNMs, which are the key structures that make our protocol unique and advantageous. Although the whole process of generation of DA neurons from hESCs takes about 2 months, only 14 d are needed to derive DA neurons from the SNMs. PMID:19008875

  7. Age and duration of inflammatory environment differentially affect the neuroimmune response and catecholaminergic neurons in the midbrain and brainstem.

    PubMed

    Bardou, Isabelle; Kaercher, Roxanne M; Brothers, Holly M; Hopp, Sarah C; Royer, Sarah; Wenk, Gary L

    2014-05-01

    Neuroinflammation and degeneration of ascending catecholaminergic systems occur early in the neurodegenerative process. Age and the duration of a pro-inflammatory environment induced by continuous intraventricular lipopolysaccharide (LPS) differentially affect the expression profile of pro- and anti-inflammatory genes and proteins as well as the number of activated microglia (express major histocompatibility complex II; MHC II) and the integrity and density of ascending catecholaminergic neural systems originating from the locus coeruleus (LC) and substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) in rats. LPS infusion increased gene expression and/or protein levels for both pro- and anti-inflammatory biomarkers. Although LPS infusion stimulated a robust increase in IL-1ß gene and protein expression, this increase was blunted with age. LPS infusion also increased the density of activated microglia cells throughout the midbrain and brainstem. Corresponding to the development of a pro-inflammatory environment, LC and SNpc neurons immunopositive for tyrosine-hydroxylase (the rate-limiting synthetic enzyme for dopamine and norepinephrine) decreased in number, along with a decrease in tyrosine-hydroxylase gene expression in the midbrain and/or brainstem region. Our data support the concept that continuous exposure to a pro-inflammatory environment drives exaggerated changes in the production and release of inflammatory mediators that interact with age to impair functional capacity of the SNpc and LC. PMID:24315728

  8. Pramipexole protects dopaminergic neurons through paraplegin against 6-hydroxydopamine.

    PubMed

    Kim, Mun Ki; Park, Hyeon Soo; Cho, Jea Hyeon; Kim, Gon Sup; Won, Chungkil

    2015-01-21

    The neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) regulates various physiological and psychological functions, such as movement, motivation, behavior, and learning. DA exerts its function through DA receptors and a series of studies have reported the role of DAergic receptors in preventing DAergic neuronal degeneration. Here, we studied the DA receptor-mediated neuroprotective effect of the D2-like receptor agonists against 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced DAergic neurodegeneration. D2-like receptor agonists were administered in the substantia nigra in vivo and to primary cultured neurons. Treatment of 6-OHDA decreased tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and paraplegin (mitochondrial regulation protein) immunoreactivity, whereas pretreatment with quinpirole (a full D2-like receptor agonist) preserved TH and paraplegin reactivity. This led us to test which DA receptors were necessary for the neuroprotective effect and whether paraplegin can be regulated by D2 or D3 receptor agonists. Pretreatment with the D2 receptor selective agonist, sumanirole, did not preserve TH and paraplegin reactivity from 6-OHDA. However, the D3 receptor agonist, pramipexole, protected TH reactivity and restored paraplegin expression to the control level in the presence of 6-OHDA. Interestingly, pretreatment with the D3 receptor antagonist GR103691 reduced TH and paraplegin expression levels. These results suggest that the D3 receptor agonist may protect DA neurons from the effect of 6-OHDA through the modulation of the mitochondrial regulation protein paraplegin. PMID:25514384

  9. The Sensory Impact of Nicotine on Noradrenergic and Dopaminergic Neurons of the Nicotine Reward - Addiction Neurocircuitry

    PubMed Central

    Rose, Jed E; Dehkordi, Ozra; Manaye, Kebreten F; Millis, Richard M; Cianaki, Salman Ameri; Jayam-Trouth, Annapurni

    2016-01-01

    The sensory experience of smoking is a key component of nicotine addiction known to result, in part, from stimulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) at peripheral sensory nerve endings. Such stimulation of nAChRs is followed by activation of neurons at multiple sites in the mesocorticolimbic reward pathways. However, the neurochemical profiles of CNS cells that mediate the peripheral sensory impact of nicotine remain unknown. In the present study in mice, we first used c-Fos immunohistochemistry to identify CNS cells stimulated by nicotine (NIC, 40 μg/kg, IP) and by a peripherally-acting analog of nicotine, nicotine pyrrolidine methiodide (NIC-PM, 30 μg/kg, IP). Sequential double-labelling was then performed to determine whether noradrenergic and dopaminergic neurons of the nicotine reward-addiction circuitry were primary targets of NIC and NIC-PM. Double-labelling of NIC and/or NIC-PM activated c-Fos immunoreactive cells with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) showed no apparent c-Fos expression by the dopaminergic cells of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). With the exception of sparse numbers of TH immunoreactive D11 cells, dopamine-containing neurons in other areas of the reward-addiction circuitry, namely periaqueductal gray, and dorsal raphe, were also devoid of c-Fos immunoreactivity. Noradrenergic neurons of locus coeruleus (LC), known to innervate VTA, were activated by both NIC and NIC-PM. These results demonstrate that noradrenergic neurons of LC are among the first structures that are stimulated by single acute IP injection of NIC and NIC-PM. Dopaminergic neurons of VTA and other CNS sites, did not respond to acute IP administration of NIC or NIC-PM by induction of c-Fos. PMID:27347434

  10. Olfactory Sensory Activity Modulates Microglial-Neuronal Interactions during Dopaminergic Cell Loss in the Olfactory Bulb.

    PubMed

    Grier, Bryce D; Belluscio, Leonardo; Cheetham, Claire E J

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian olfactory bulb (OB) displays robust activity-dependent plasticity throughout life. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the glomerular layer (GL) of the OB are particularly plastic, with loss of sensory input rapidly reducing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression and dopamine production, followed by a substantial reduction in DA neuron number. Here, we asked whether microglia participate in activity-dependent elimination of DA neurons in the mouse OB. Interestingly, we found a significant reduction in the number of both DA neurons and their synapses in the OB ipsilateral to the occluded naris (occluded OB) within just 7 days of sensory deprivation. Concomitantly, the volume of the occluded OB decreased, resulting in an increase in microglial density. Microglia in the occluded OB also adopted morphologies consistent with activation. Using in vivo 2-photon imaging and histological analysis we then showed that loss of olfactory input markedly altered microglial-neuronal interactions during the time that DA neurons are being eliminated: both microglial process motility and the frequency of wrapping of DA neuron somata by activated microglia increased significantly in the occluded OB. Furthermore, we found microglia in the occluded OB that had completely engulfed components of DA neurons. Together, our data provide evidence that loss of olfactory input modulates microglial-DA neuron interactions in the OB, thereby suggesting an important role for microglia in the activity-dependent elimination of DA neurons and their synapses. PMID:27471450

  11. Olfactory Sensory Activity Modulates Microglial-Neuronal Interactions during Dopaminergic Cell Loss in the Olfactory Bulb

    PubMed Central

    Grier, Bryce D.; Belluscio, Leonardo; Cheetham, Claire E. J.

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian olfactory bulb (OB) displays robust activity-dependent plasticity throughout life. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the glomerular layer (GL) of the OB are particularly plastic, with loss of sensory input rapidly reducing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression and dopamine production, followed by a substantial reduction in DA neuron number. Here, we asked whether microglia participate in activity-dependent elimination of DA neurons in the mouse OB. Interestingly, we found a significant reduction in the number of both DA neurons and their synapses in the OB ipsilateral to the occluded naris (occluded OB) within just 7 days of sensory deprivation. Concomitantly, the volume of the occluded OB decreased, resulting in an increase in microglial density. Microglia in the occluded OB also adopted morphologies consistent with activation. Using in vivo 2-photon imaging and histological analysis we then showed that loss of olfactory input markedly altered microglial-neuronal interactions during the time that DA neurons are being eliminated: both microglial process motility and the frequency of wrapping of DA neuron somata by activated microglia increased significantly in the occluded OB. Furthermore, we found microglia in the occluded OB that had completely engulfed components of DA neurons. Together, our data provide evidence that loss of olfactory input modulates microglial-DA neuron interactions in the OB, thereby suggesting an important role for microglia in the activity-dependent elimination of DA neurons and their synapses. PMID:27471450

  12. Long-term health of dopaminergic neuron transplants in Parkinson's disease patients.

    PubMed

    Hallett, Penelope J; Cooper, Oliver; Sadi, Damaso; Robertson, Harold; Mendez, Ivar; Isacson, Ole

    2014-06-26

    To determine the long-term health and function of transplanted dopamine neurons in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, the expression of dopamine transporters (DATs) and mitochondrial morphology were examined in human fetal midbrain cellular transplants. DAT was robustly expressed in transplanted dopamine neuron terminals in the reinnervated host putamen and caudate for at least 14 years after transplantation. The transplanted dopamine neurons showed a healthy and nonatrophied morphology at all time points. Labeling of the mitochondrial outer membrane protein Tom20 and α-synuclein showed a typical cellular pathology in the patients' own substantia nigra, which was not observed in transplanted dopamine neurons. These results show that the vast majority of transplanted neurons remain healthy for the long term in PD patients, consistent with clinical findings that fetal dopamine neuron transplants maintain function for up to 15-18 years in patients. These findings are critically important for the rational development of stem-cell-based dopamine neuronal replacement therapies for PD. PMID:24910427

  13. Social Isolation Blunted the Response of Mesocortical Dopaminergic Neurons to Chronic Ethanol Voluntary Intake.

    PubMed

    Lallai, Valeria; Manca, Letizia; Dazzi, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that stress can increase the response of mesolimbic dopaminergic neurons to acute administration of drugs of abuse included ethanol. In this study, we investigated the possible involvement of the mesocortical dopaminergic pathway in the development of ethanol abuse under stress conditions. To this aim we trained both socially isolated (SI) and group housed (GH) rats to self administer ethanol which was made available only 2 ha day (from 11:00 to 13:00 h). Rats have been trained for 3 weeks starting at postnatal day 35. After training, rats were surgically implanted with microdialysis probes under deep anesthesia, and 24 hlater extracellular dopamine concentrations were monitored in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) for the 2 hpreceding ethanol administration (anticipatory phase), during ethanol exposure (consummatory phase) and for 2 hafter ethanol removal. Results show that, in GH animals, dopamine extracellular concentration in the mPFC increased as early as 80 min before ethanol presentation (+50% over basal values) and remained elevated for 80 min during ethanol exposure. In SI rats, on the contrary, dopamine extracellular concentration did not show any significant change at any time point. Ethanol consumption was significantly higher in SI than in GH rats. Moreover, mesocortical dopaminergic neurons in SI animals also showed a decreased sensitivity to an acute administration of ethanol with respect to GH rats. Our results show that prolonged exposure to stress, as in social isolation, is able to induce significant changes in the response of mesocortical dopaminergic neurons to ethanol exposure and suggest that these changes might play an important role in the compulsivity observed in ethanol addiction. PMID:27378852

  14. Social Isolation Blunted the Response of Mesocortical Dopaminergic Neurons to Chronic Ethanol Voluntary Intake

    PubMed Central

    Lallai, Valeria; Manca, Letizia; Dazzi, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that stress can increase the response of mesolimbic dopaminergic neurons to acute administration of drugs of abuse included ethanol. In this study, we investigated the possible involvement of the mesocortical dopaminergic pathway in the development of ethanol abuse under stress conditions. To this aim we trained both socially isolated (SI) and group housed (GH) rats to self administer ethanol which was made available only 2 ha day (from 11:00 to 13:00 h). Rats have been trained for 3 weeks starting at postnatal day 35. After training, rats were surgically implanted with microdialysis probes under deep anesthesia, and 24 hlater extracellular dopamine concentrations were monitored in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) for the 2 hpreceding ethanol administration (anticipatory phase), during ethanol exposure (consummatory phase) and for 2 hafter ethanol removal. Results show that, in GH animals, dopamine extracellular concentration in the mPFC increased as early as 80 min before ethanol presentation (+50% over basal values) and remained elevated for 80 min during ethanol exposure. In SI rats, on the contrary, dopamine extracellular concentration did not show any significant change at any time point. Ethanol consumption was significantly higher in SI than in GH rats. Moreover, mesocortical dopaminergic neurons in SI animals also showed a decreased sensitivity to an acute administration of ethanol with respect to GH rats. Our results show that prolonged exposure to stress, as in social isolation, is able to induce significant changes in the response of mesocortical dopaminergic neurons to ethanol exposure and suggest that these changes might play an important role in the compulsivity observed in ethanol addiction. PMID:27378852

  15. Relative contributions of severe dopaminergic neuron ablation and dopamine depletion to cognitive impairment.

    PubMed

    Morgan, R Garrett; Gibbs, Jeffrey T; Melief, Erica J; Postupna, Nadia O; Sherfield, Emily E; Wilson, Angela; Keene, C Dirk; Montine, Thomas J; Palmiter, Richard D; Darvas, Martin

    2015-09-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons and produces a movement disorder and cognitive impairment that becomes more extensive with the duration of the disease. To what extent cognitive impairment in advanced PD can be attributed to severe loss of dopamine (DA) signaling is not well understood. Furthermore, it is unclear if the loss of DA neurons contributes to the cognitive impairment caused by the reduction in DA signaling. We generated genetic mouse models with equally severe chronic loss of DA achieved by either extensive ablation of DA neurons or inactivation of DA synthesis from preserved neurons and compared their motor and cognitive performance. Motor behaviors were equally blunted in both models, but we observed that DA neuron ablation caused more severe cognitive deficits than DA depletion. Both models had marked deficits in cue-discrimination learning. Yet, deficits in cue-discrimination learning were more severe in mice with DA neuron ablation and only mice with DA neuron ablation had drastically impaired performance in spatial learning, spatial memory and object memory tests. These results indicate that while a severe reduction in DA signaling results in motor and cognitive impairments, the loss of DA neurons promotes more extensive cognitive deficits and suggest that a loss of additional factors that depend on DA neurons may participate in the progressive cognitive decline found in patients with PD. PMID:26079646

  16. HIV Subtypes B and C gp120 and Methamphetamine Interaction: Dopaminergic System Implicates Differential Neuronal Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Samikkannu, Thangavel; Rao, Kurapati V K; Salam, Abdul Ajees Abdul; Atluri, Venkata S R; Kaftanovskaya, Elena M; Agudelo, Marisela; Perez, Suray; Yoo, Changwon; Raymond, Andrea D; Ding, Hong; Nair, Madhavan P N

    2015-01-01

    HIV subtypes or clades differentially induce HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) and substance abuse is known to accelerate HIV disease progression. The HIV-1 envelope protein gp120 plays a major role in binding and budding in the central nervous system (CNS) and impacts dopaminergic functions. However, the mechanisms utilized by HIV-1 clades to exert differential effects and the methamphetamine (METH)-associated dopaminergic dysfunction are poorly understood. We hypothesized that clade B and C gp120 structural sequences, modeling based analysis, dopaminergic effect, and METH potentiate neuronal toxicity in astrocytes. We evaluated the effect of clade B and C gp120 and/or METH on the DRD-2, DAT, CaMKs and CREBP transcription. Both the structural sequence and modeling studies demonstrated that clade B gp120 in V1-V4, α -2 and N-glycosylated sites are distinct from clade C gp120. The distinct structure and sequence variation of clade B gp120 differentially impact DRD-2, DAT, CaMK II and CaMK IV mRNA, protein and intracellular expression compared to clade C gp120. However, CREB transcription is upregulated by both clade B and C gp120, and METH co-treatment potentiated these effects. In conclusion, distinct structural sequences of HIV-1 clade B and C gp120 differentially regulate the dopaminergic pathway and METH potentiates neurotoxicity. PMID:26057350

  17. Recent Advances in Imaging of Dopaminergic Neurons for Evaluation of Neuropsychiatric Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Lie-Hang; Liao, Mei-Hsiu; Tseng, Yu-Chin

    2012-01-01

    Dopamine is the most intensely studied monoaminergic neurotransmitter. Dopaminergic neurotransmission plays an important role in regulating several aspects of basic brain function, including motor, behavior, motivation, and working memory. To date, there are numerous positron emission tomography (PET) and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) radiotracers available for targeting different steps in the process of dopaminergic neurotransmission, which permits us to quantify dopaminergic activity in the living human brain. Degeneration of the nigrostriatal dopamine system causes Parkinson's disease (PD) and related Parkinsonism. Dopamine is the neurotransmitter that has been classically associated with the reinforcing effects of drug abuse. Abnormalities within the dopamine system in the brain are involved in the pathophysiology of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Dopamine receptors play an important role in schizophrenia and the effect of neuroleptics is through blockage of dopamine D2 receptors. This review will concentrate on the radiotracers that have been developed for imaging dopaminergic neurons, describe the clinical aspects in the assessment of neuropsychiatric disorders, and suggest future directions in the diagnosis and management of such disorders. PMID:22570524

  18. HIV Subtypes B and C gp120 and Methamphetamine Interaction: Dopaminergic System Implicates Differential Neuronal Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Samikkannu, Thangavel; Rao, Kurapati V. K.; Salam, Abdul Ajees Abdul; Atluri, Venkata S. R.; Kaftanovskaya, Elena M.; Agudelo, Marisela; Perez, Suray; Yoo, Changwon; Raymond, Andrea D.; Ding, Hong; Nair, Madhavan P. N.

    2015-01-01

    HIV subtypes or clades differentially induce HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) and substance abuse is known to accelerate HIV disease progression. The HIV-1 envelope protein gp120 plays a major role in binding and budding in the central nervous system (CNS) and impacts dopaminergic functions. However, the mechanisms utilized by HIV-1 clades to exert differential effects and the methamphetamine (METH)-associated dopaminergic dysfunction are poorly understood. We hypothesized that clade B and C gp120 structural sequences, modeling based analysis, dopaminergic effect, and METH potentiate neuronal toxicity in astrocytes. We evaluated the effect of clade B and C gp120 and/or METH on the DRD-2, DAT, CaMKs and CREBP transcription. Both the structural sequence and modeling studies demonstrated that clade B gp120 in V1-V4, α -2 and N-glycosylated sites are distinct from clade C gp120. The distinct structure and sequence variation of clade B gp120 differentially impact DRD-2, DAT, CaMK II and CaMK IV mRNA, protein and intracellular expression compared to clade C gp120. However, CREB transcription is upregulated by both clade B and C gp120, and METH co-treatment potentiated these effects. In conclusion, distinct structural sequences of HIV-1 clade B and C gp120 differentially regulate the dopaminergic pathway and METH potentiates neurotoxicity. PMID:26057350

  19. GABAergic Afferents activate both GABAA and GABAB receptors in mouse substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Brazhnik, Elena; Shah, Fulva; Tepper, James M.

    2008-01-01

    Most in vivo electrophysiological studies of substantia nigra have employed rats. With the recent proliferation of the use of mice for in vitro neurophysiological studies due to the availability of various genetically modified strains to identify the roles of various channels and proteins in neuronal function, it is crucial to obtain data on in vivo responses in mice to verify that the in vitro results reflect functioning of systems comparable to those that have been well studied in rat. Inhibitory responses of rat nigral dopaminergic neurons by stimulation of afferents from striatum, globus pallidus or pars reticulata have been shown to be mediated predominantly or exclusively by GABAA receptors. This is puzzling given the substantial expression of GABAB receptors and the ubiquitous appearance of GABAB synaptic responses in rat dopaminergic neurons in vitro. In the present study we studied electrically evoked GABAergic inhibition in nigral dopaminergic neurons in C57BL/6J mice. Stimulation of the three major GABAergic inputs elicited stronger and longer lasting inhibitory responses than those seen in rats. The early inhibition was GABAA mediated, whereas the later component, absent in rats, was GABAB mediated and selectively enhanced by GABA uptake inhibition. Striatal-evoked inhibition exhibited a slower onset and a weaker initial component compared to inhibition from globus pallidus or substantia nigra pars reticulata. These results are discussed with respect to differences in the size and neuronal density of the rat and mouse brain, and the different sites of synaptic contact of the synapses from the three GABAergic afferents. PMID:18842898

  20. Obesity attenuates D2 autoreceptor‐mediated inhibition of putative ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Koyama, Susumu; Mori, Masayoshi; Kanamaru, Syohei; Sazawa, Takuya; Miyazaki, Ayano; Terai, Hiroki; Hirose, Shinichi

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The ventral tegmental area (VTA) in the midbrain is important for food reward. High‐fat containing palatable foods have reinforcing effects and accelerate obesity. We have previously reported that diet‐induced obesity selectively decreased the spontaneous activity of VTA GABA neurons, but not dopamine neurons. The spontaneous activity of VTA dopamine neurons is regulated by D2 autoreceptors. In this study, we hypothesized that obesity would affect the excitability of VTA dopamine neurons via D2 autoreceptors. To examine this hypothesis, we compared D2 receptor‐mediated responses of VTA dopamine neurons between lean and obese mice. Mice fed on a high‐fat (45%) diet and mice fed on a standard diet were used as obese and lean models, respectively. Brain slice preparations were made from these two groups. Spontaneous activity of VTA neurons was recorded by extracellular recording. Putative VTA dopamine neurons were identified by firing inhibition with a D2 receptor agonist quinpirole, and electrophysiological criteria (firing frequency <5 Hz and action potential current duration >1.2 msec). Single‐dose application of quinpirole (3−100 nmol/L) exhibited similar firing inhibition of putative VTA dopamine neurons between lean and obese mice. In stepwise application by increasing quinpirole concentrations of 3, 10, 30, and 100 nmol/L subsequently, quinpirole‐induced inhibition of firing decreased in putative VTA dopamine neurons of obese mice compared with those of lean mice. In conclusion, high‐fat diet‐induced obesity attenuated D2 receptor‐mediated inhibition of putative VTA dopamine neurons due to the acceleration of D2 receptor desensitization. PMID:24793981

  1. Auditory Distance Coding in Rabbit Midbrain Neurons and Human Perception: Monaural Amplitude Modulation Depth as a Cue

    PubMed Central

    Zahorik, Pavel; Carney, Laurel H.; Bishop, Brian B.; Kuwada, Shigeyuki

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying sound source distance localization are not well understood. Here we tested the hypothesis that a novel mechanism can create monaural distance sensitivity: a combination of auditory midbrain neurons' sensitivity to amplitude modulation (AM) depth and distance-dependent loss of AM in reverberation. We used virtual auditory space (VAS) methods for sounds at various distances in anechoic and reverberant environments. Stimulus level was constant across distance. With increasing modulation depth, some rabbit inferior colliculus neurons increased firing rates whereas others decreased. These neurons exhibited monotonic relationships between firing rates and distance for monaurally presented noise when two conditions were met: (1) the sound had AM, and (2) the environment was reverberant. The firing rates as a function of distance remained approximately constant without AM in either environment and, in an anechoic condition, even with AM. We corroborated this finding by reproducing the distance sensitivity using a neural model. We also conducted a human psychophysical study using similar methods. Normal-hearing listeners reported perceived distance in response to monaural 1 octave 4 kHz noise source sounds presented at distances of 35–200 cm. We found parallels between the rabbit neural and human responses. In both, sound distance could be discriminated only if the monaural sound in reverberation had AM. These observations support the hypothesis. When other cues are available (e.g., in binaural hearing), how much the auditory system actually uses the AM as a distance cue remains to be determined. PMID:25834060

  2. Auditory distance coding in rabbit midbrain neurons and human perception: monaural amplitude modulation depth as a cue.

    PubMed

    Kim, Duck O; Zahorik, Pavel; Carney, Laurel H; Bishop, Brian B; Kuwada, Shigeyuki

    2015-04-01

    Mechanisms underlying sound source distance localization are not well understood. Here we tested the hypothesis that a novel mechanism can create monaural distance sensitivity: a combination of auditory midbrain neurons' sensitivity to amplitude modulation (AM) depth and distance-dependent loss of AM in reverberation. We used virtual auditory space (VAS) methods for sounds at various distances in anechoic and reverberant environments. Stimulus level was constant across distance. With increasing modulation depth, some rabbit inferior colliculus neurons increased firing rates whereas others decreased. These neurons exhibited monotonic relationships between firing rates and distance for monaurally presented noise when two conditions were met: (1) the sound had AM, and (2) the environment was reverberant. The firing rates as a function of distance remained approximately constant without AM in either environment and, in an anechoic condition, even with AM. We corroborated this finding by reproducing the distance sensitivity using a neural model. We also conducted a human psychophysical study using similar methods. Normal-hearing listeners reported perceived distance in response to monaural 1 octave 4 kHz noise source sounds presented at distances of 35-200 cm. We found parallels between the rabbit neural and human responses. In both, sound distance could be discriminated only if the monaural sound in reverberation had AM. These observations support the hypothesis. When other cues are available (e.g., in binaural hearing), how much the auditory system actually uses the AM as a distance cue remains to be determined. PMID:25834060

  3. The fate of striatal dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson's disease and Huntington's chorea.

    PubMed

    Huot, Philippe; Lévesque, Martin; Parent, André

    2007-01-01

    The striatum harbours a population of dopaminergic neurons that is thought to act as a local source of dopamine (DA). This neuronal population increases in size in animal models of Parkinson's disease, where striatal DA levels are low, but its fate in idiopathic Parkinson's disease and Huntington's chorea is poorly known. In this study, we used antibodies raised against the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), a faithful marker of dopaminergic neurons, to compare, by means of stereological counting methods, the number of striatal TH+ neurons on post-mortem brain sections from Parkinson's disease patients, Huntington's disease patients and age-matched controls. Propidium iodide nuclear staining was also performed to avoid counting short TH+ axonal segments that bear a large swollen varicosity and resemble small bipolar neurons. In normal subjects, TH+ neurons were scattered throughout the striatum, but they abounded preferentially in the ventral portion of the structure and were more numerous in the putamen than in the caudate nucleus. They displayed a multipolar cell body of medium size (10-20 mum in diameter) that emitted 3-5 smooth dendrites, a typical characteristic of striatal interneurons. These TH+ cells were rarely found in the small TH-poor striosomes, most of them being embedded in the large TH-rich extrastriosomal matrix. The number of striatal TH+ neurons was also found to vary according to an inverse relation with the age of the subjects. In pathological brains, the morphological characteristics of the striatal TH+ neurons were relatively unaltered, but the number of such neurons was markedly reduced compared with controls. The striatum of Parkinson's disease patients was found to contain six times less TH+ neurons than that of controls, whereas the striatum of Huntington's disease patients was largely devoid of such neurons. These findings are at odds with the results obtained in rodent and monkey models of Parkinson's disease, in which the number of

  4. Age-related changes in dopamine transporters and accumulation of 3-nitrotyrosine in rhesus monkey midbrain dopamine neurons: Relevance in selective neuronal vulnerability to degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Kanaan, N. M.; Kordower, J. H.; Collier, T. J.

    2012-01-01

    Aging is the strongest risk factor for developing Parkinson’s disease (PD). There is a preferential loss of dopamine (DA) neurons in the ventral tier of the substantia nigra (vtSN) compared to the dorsal tier and ventral tegmental area (VTA) in PD. Examining age-related and region-specific differences in DA neurons represents a means of identifying factors potentially involved in vulnerability or resistance to degeneration. Nitrative stress is among the factors potentially underlying DA neuron degeneration. We studied the relationship between 3-nitrotyrosine (3NT; a marker of nitrative damage) and DA transporters [DA transporter (DAT) and vesicular monoamine transporter-2 (VMAT)] during aging in DA subregions of rhesus monkeys. The percentage of DA neurons containing 3NT increased significantly only in the vtSN with advancing age, and the vtSN had a greater percentage of 3NT-positive neurons when compared to the VTA. The relationship between 3NT and DA transporters was determined by measuring fluorescence intensity of 3NT, DAT and VMAT staining. 3NT intensity increased with advancing age in the vtSN. Increased DAT, VMAT and DAT/VMAT ratios were associated with increased 3NT in individual DA neurons. These results suggest nitrative damage accumulates in midbrain DA neurons with advancing age, an effect exacerbated in the vulnerable vtSN. The capacity of a DA neuron to accumulate more cytosolic DA, as inferred from DA transporter expression, is related to accumulation of nitrative damage. These findings are consistent with a role for aging-related accrual of nitrative damage in the selective vulnerability of vtSN neurons to degeneration in PD. PMID:18598263

  5. Progressive loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons induced by inflammatory responses to fipronil.

    PubMed

    Park, Jae Hyeon; Park, Youn Sun; Koh, Hyun Chul

    2016-09-01

    Inflammatory responses are involved in mechanisms of neuronal cell damage in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD). We investigated the mechanisms whereby inflammatory responses contribute to loss of dopaminergic neurons in fipronil (FPN)-treated rats. After stereotaxic injection of FPN in the substantia nigra (SN), the number of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons and the levels of TH expression in the SN decreased at 7days, and a significant decrease was observed at 14days with a subsequent reduction in striatal TH expression. Decreases in dopamine (DA) levels, however, began at 3days post-injection, preceding the changes in TH expression. In contrast, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression was significantly increased at 3days and persisted for up to 14days post-lesion; these changes in GFAP expression appeared to be inversely correlated with TH expression. Furthermore, we found that FPN administration induced an inflammatory response characterized by increased levels of inducible NO synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), which was mediated by activated microglia following infusion of FPN unilaterally into the SN. Intranigral injection of FPN underwent an inflammatory response with a resultant ongoing loss of dopaminergic neurons, indicating that pesticides may have important implication for the study of PD. PMID:27313094

  6. Tiagabine Protects Dopaminergic Neurons against Neurotoxins by Inhibiting Microglial Activation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jie; Huang, Dongping; Xu, Jing; Tong, Jiabin; Wang, Zishan; Huang, Li; Yang, Yufang; Bai, Xiaochen; Wang, Pan; Suo, Haiyun; Ma, Yuanyuan; Yu, Mei; Fei, Jian; Huang, Fang

    2015-01-01

    Microglial activation and inflammation are associated with progressive neuronal apoptosis in neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (PD). γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, has recently been shown to play an inhibitory role in the immune system. Tiagabine, a piperidine derivative, enhances GABAergic transmission by inhibiting GABA transporter 1 (GAT 1). In the present study, we found that tiagabine pretreatment attenuated microglial activation, provided partial protection to the nigrostriatal axis and improved motor deficits in a methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) mouse model of PD. The protective function of tiagabine was abolished in GAT 1 knockout mice that were challenged with MPTP. In an alternative PD model, induced by intranigral infusion of lipopolysaccharide (LPS), microglial suppression and subsequent neuroprotective effects of tiagabine were demonstrated. Furthermore, the LPS-induced inflammatory activation of BV-2 microglial cells and the toxicity of conditioned medium toward SH-SY5Y cells were inhibited by pretreatment with GABAergic drugs. The attenuation of the nuclear translocation of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) and the inhibition of the generation of inflammatory mediators were the underlying mechanisms. Our results suggest that tiagabine acts as a brake for nigrostriatal microglial activation and that it might be a novel therapeutic approach for PD. PMID:26499517

  7. Functional Interplay between Dopaminergic and Serotonergic Neuronal Systems during Development and Adulthood

    PubMed Central

    Dymecki, Susan M.

    2016-01-01

    The complex integration of neurotransmitter signals in the nervous system contributes to the shaping of behavioral and emotional constitutions throughout development. Imbalance among these signals may result in pathological behaviors and psychiatric illnesses. Therefore, a better understanding of the interplay between neurotransmitter systems holds potential to facilitate therapeutic development. Of particular clinical interest are the dopaminergic and serotonergic systems, as both modulate a broad array of behaviors and emotions and have been implicated in a wide range of affective disorders. Here we review evidence speaking to an interaction between the dopaminergic and serotonergic neuronal systems across development. We highlight data stemming from developmental, functional, and clinical studies, reflecting the importance of this transmonoaminergic interplay. PMID:25747116

  8. Activity-dependent regulation of NMDA receptors in substantia nigra dopaminergic neurones.

    PubMed

    Wild, Angela R; Jones, Susan; Gibb, Alasdair J

    2014-02-15

    N-Methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are Ca(2+)-permeable glutamate receptors that play a critical role in synaptic plasticity and promoting cell survival. However, overactive NMDARs can trigger cell death signalling pathways and have been implicated in substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) pathology in Parkinson's disease. Calcium ion influx through NMDARs recruits Ca(2+)-dependent proteins that can regulate NMDAR activity. The surface density of NMDARs can also be regulated dynamically in response to receptor activity via Ca(2+)-independent mechanisms. We have investigated the activity-dependent regulation of NMDARs in SNc dopaminergic neurones. Repeated whole-cell agonist applications resulted in a decline in the amplitude of NMDAR currents (current run-down) that was use dependent and not readily reversible. Run-down was reduced by increasing intracellular Ca(2+) buffering or by reducing Ca(2+) influx but did not appear to be mediated by the same regulatory proteins that cause Ca(2+)-dependent run-down in hippocampal neurones. The NMDAR current run-down may be mediated in part by a Ca(2+)-independent mechanism, because intracellular dialysis with a dynamin-inhibitory peptide reduced run-down, suggesting a role for clathrin-mediated endocytosis in the regulation of the surface density of receptors. Synaptic NMDARs were also subject to current run-down during repeated low-frequency synaptic stimulation in a Ca(2+)-dependent but dynamin-independent manner. Thus, we report, for the first time, regulation of NMDARs in SNc dopaminergic neurones by changes in intracellular Ca(2+) at both synaptic and extrasynaptic sites and provide evidence for activity-dependent changes in receptor trafficking. These mechanisms may contribute to intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis in dopaminergic neurones by limiting Ca(2+) influx through the NMDAR. PMID:24344168

  9. Histone Hyperacetylation Up-regulates Protein Kinase Cδ in Dopaminergic Neurons to Induce Cell Death

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Huajun; Kanthasamy, Arthi; Harischandra, Dilshan S.; Kondru, Naveen; Ghosh, Anamitra; Panicker, Nikhil; Anantharam, Vellareddy; Rana, Ajay; Kanthasamy, Anumantha G.

    2014-01-01

    The oxidative stress-sensitive protein kinase Cδ (PKCδ) has been implicated in dopaminergic neuronal cell death. However, little is known about the epigenetic mechanisms regulating PKCδ expression in neurons. Here, we report a novel mechanism by which the PKCδ gene can be regulated by histone acetylation. Treatment with histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor sodium butyrate (NaBu) induced PKCδ expression in cultured neurons, brain slices, and animal models. Several other HDAC inhibitors also mimicked NaBu. The chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis revealed that hyperacetylation of histone H4 by NaBu is associated with the PKCδ promoter. Deletion analysis of the PKCδ promoter mapped the NaBu-responsive element to an 81-bp minimal promoter region. Detailed mutagenesis studies within this region revealed that four GC boxes conferred hyperacetylation-induced PKCδ promoter activation. Cotransfection experiments and Sp inhibitor studies demonstrated that Sp1, Sp3, and Sp4 regulated NaBu-induced PKCδ up-regulation. However, NaBu did not alter the DNA binding activities of Sp proteins or their expression. Interestingly, a one-hybrid analysis revealed that NaBu enhanced transcriptional activity of Sp1/Sp3. Overexpression of the p300/cAMP-response element-binding protein-binding protein (CBP) potentiated the NaBu-mediated transactivation potential of Sp1/Sp3, but expressing several HDACs attenuated this effect, suggesting that p300/CBP and HDACs act as coactivators or corepressors in histone acetylation-induced PKCδ up-regulation. Finally, using genetic and pharmacological approaches, we showed that NaBu up-regulation of PKCδ sensitizes neurons to cell death in a human dopaminergic cell model and brain slice cultures. Together, these results indicate that histone acetylation regulates PKCδ expression to augment nigrostriatal dopaminergic cell death, which could contribute to the progressive neuropathogenesis of Parkinson disease. PMID:25342743

  10. A High-content screen identifies compounds promoting the neuronal differentiation and the midbrain dopamine neuron specification of human neural progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Rhim, Ji Heon; Luo, Xiangjian; Xu, Xiaoyun; Gao, Dongbing; Zhou, Tieling; Li, Fuhai; Qin, Lidong; Wang, Ping; Xia, Xiaofeng; Wong, Stephen T C

    2015-01-01

    Small molecule compounds promoting the neuronal differentiation of stem/progenitor cells are of pivotal importance to regenerative medicine. We carried out a high-content screen to systematically characterize known bioactive compounds, on their effects on the neuronal differentiation and the midbrain dopamine (mDA) neuron specification of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) derived from the ventral mesencephalon of human fetal brain. Among the promoting compounds three major pharmacological classes were identified including the statins, TGF-βRI inhibitors, and GSK-3 inhibitors. The function of each class was also shown to be distinct, either to promote both the neuronal differentiation and mDA neuron specification, or selectively the latter, or promote the former but suppress the latter. We then carried out initial investigation on the possible mechanisms underlying, and demonstrated their applications on NPCs derived from human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs). Our study revealed the potential of several small molecule compounds for use in the directed differentiation of human NPCs. The screening result also provided insight into the signaling network regulating the differentiation of human NPCs. PMID:26542303

  11. A High-content screen identifies compounds promoting the neuronal differentiation and the midbrain dopamine neuron specification of human neural progenitor cells

    PubMed Central

    Rhim, Ji heon; Luo, Xiangjian; Xu, Xiaoyun; Gao, Dongbing; Zhou, Tieling; Li, Fuhai; Qin, Lidong; Wang, Ping; Xia, Xiaofeng; Wong, Stephen T. C.

    2015-01-01

    Small molecule compounds promoting the neuronal differentiation of stem/progenitor cells are of pivotal importance to regenerative medicine. We carried out a high-content screen to systematically characterize known bioactive compounds, on their effects on the neuronal differentiation and the midbrain dopamine (mDA) neuron specification of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) derived from the ventral mesencephalon of human fetal brain. Among the promoting compounds three major pharmacological classes were identified including the statins, TGF-βRI inhibitors, and GSK-3 inhibitors. The function of each class was also shown to be distinct, either to promote both the neuronal differentiation and mDA neuron specification, or selectively the latter, or promote the former but suppress the latter. We then carried out initial investigation on the possible mechanisms underlying, and demonstrated their applications on NPCs derived from human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs). Our study revealed the potential of several small molecule compounds for use in the directed differentiation of human NPCs. The screening result also provided insight into the signaling network regulating the differentiation of human NPCs. PMID:26542303

  12. Effect of Cell Adhesion Molecules on the Neurite Outgrowth of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Peng, Su-Ping; Schachner, Melitta; Boddeke, Erik; Copray, Sjef

    2016-04-01

    Intrastriatal transplantation of dopaminergic neurons has been shown to be a potentially very effective therapeutic approach for the treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD). With the detection of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), an unlimited source of autologous dopaminergic (DA) neurons became available. Although the iPSC-derived dopaminergic neurons exhibited most of the fundamental dopaminergic characteristics, detailed analysis and comparison with primary DA neurons have shown some aberrations in the expression of genes involved in neuronal development and neurite outgrowth. The limited outgrowth of the iPSC-derived DA neurons may hamper their potential application in cell transplantation therapy for PD. In the present study, we examined whether the forced expression of L1 cell adhesion molecule (L1CAM) and polysialylated neuronal cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM), via gene transduction, can promote the neurite formation and outgrowth of iPSC-derived DA neurons. In cultures on astrocyte layers, both adhesion factors significantly increased neurite formation of the adhesion factor overexpressing iPSC-derived DA neurons in comparison to control iPSC-derived DA neurons. The same tendency was observed when the DA neurons were plated on postnatal organotypic striatal slices; however, this effect did not reach statistical significance. Next, we examined the neurite outgrowth of the L1CAM- or PSA-NCAM-overexpressing iPSC-derived DA neurons after implantation in the striatum of unilaterally 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rats, the animal model for PD. Like the outgrowth on the organotypic striatal slices, no significant L1CAM- and PSA-NCAM-enforced neurite outgrowth of the implanted DA neurons was observed. Apparently, induced expression of L1CAM or PSA-NCAM in the iPSC-derived DA neurons cannot completely restore the neurite outgrowth potential that was reduced in these DA neurons as a consequence of epigenetic aberrations resulting from the i

  13. Activation of CNTF/CNTFRα signaling pathway by hRheb(S16H) transduction of dopaminergic neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Kyoung Hoon; Nam, Jin Han; Jin, Byung Kwan; Kim, Sang Ryong

    2015-01-01

    Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is one of representative neurotrophic factors for the survival of dopaminergic neurons. Its effects are primarily mediated via CNTF receptor α (CNTFRα). It is still unclear whether the levels of CNTFRα change in the substantia nigra of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, but CNTF expression shows the remarkable decrease in dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc), suggesting that the support of CNTF/CNTFRα signaling pathway may be a useful neuroprotective strategy for the nigrostriatal dopaminergic projection in the adult brain. Here, we report that transduction of rat SNpc dopaminergic neurons by adeno-associated virus with a gene encoding human ras homolog enriched in brain (hRheb), with an S16H mutation [hRheb(S16H)], significantly upregulated the levels of both CNTF and CNTFRα in dopaminergic neurons. Moreover, the hRheb(S16H)-activated CNTF/CNTFRα signaling pathway was protective against 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium-induced neurotoxicity in the nigrostriatal dopaminergic projections. These results suggest that activation of CNTF/CNTFRα signaling pathway by specific gene delivery such as hRheb(S16H) may have therapeutic potential in the treatment of PD. PMID:25799580

  14. Effects of Forskolin on Trefoil factor 1 expression in cultured ventral mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Jensen, P; Ducray, A D; Widmer, H R; Meyer, M

    2015-12-01

    Trefoil factor 1 (TFF1) belongs to a family of secreted peptides that are mainly expressed in the gastrointestinal tract. Notably, TFF1 has been suggested to operate as a neuropeptide, however, its specific cellular expression, regulation and function remain largely unknown. We have previously shown that TFF1 is expressed in developing and adult rat ventral mesencephalic tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-ir) dopaminergic neurons. Here, we investigated the expression of TFF1 in rat ventral mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons (embryonic day 14) grown in culture for 5, 7 or 10 days in the absence (controls) or presence of either glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), Forskolin or the combination. No TFF1-ir cells were identified at day 5 and only a few at day 7, whereas TH was markedly expressed at both time points. At day 10, several TFF1-ir cells were detected, and their numbers were significantly increased after the addition of GDNF (2.2-fold) or Forskolin (4.1-fold) compared to controls. Furthermore, the combination of GDNF and Forskolin had an additive effect and increased the number of TFF1-ir cells by 5.6-fold compared to controls. TFF1 expression was restricted to neuronal cells, and the percentage of TH/TFF1 co-expressing cells was increased to the same extent in GDNF and Forskolin-treated cultures (4-fold) as compared to controls. Interestingly, the combination of GDNF and Forskolin resulted in a significantly increased co-expression (8-fold) of TH/TFF1, which could indicate that GDNF and Forskolin targeted different subpopulations of TH/TFF1 neurons. Short-term treatment with Forskolin resulted in an increased number of TFF1-ir cells, and this effect was significantly reduced by the MEK1 inhibitor PD98059 or the protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor H89, suggesting that Forskolin induced TFF1 expression through diverse signaling pathways. In conclusion, distinct populations of cultured dopaminergic neurons express TFF1, and their numbers can be

  15. Assessing neurodegenerative phenotypes in Drosophila dopaminergic neurons by climbing assays and whole brain immunostaining.

    PubMed

    Barone, Maria Cecilia; Bohmann, Dirk

    2013-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster is a valuable model organism to study aging and pathological degenerative processes in the nervous system. The advantages of the fly as an experimental system include its genetic tractability, short life span and the possibility to observe and quantitatively analyze complex behaviors. The expression of disease-linked genes in specific neuronal populations of the Drosophila brain, can be used to model human neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's (5). Dopaminergic (DA) neurons are among the most vulnerable neuronal populations in the aging human brain. In Parkinson's disease (PD), the most common neurodegenerative movement disorder, the accelerated loss of DA neurons leads to a progressive and irreversible decline in locomotor function. In addition to age and exposure to environmental toxins, loss of DA neurons is exacerbated by specific mutations in the coding or promoter regions of several genes. The identification of such PD-associated alleles provides the experimental basis for the use of Drosophila as a model to study neurodegeneration of DA neurons in vivo. For example, the expression of the PD-linked human α-synuclein gene in Drosophila DA neurons recapitulates some features of the human disease, e.g. progressive loss of DA neurons and declining locomotor function (2). Accordingly, this model has been successfully used to identify potential therapeutic targets in PD (8). Here we describe two assays that have commonly been used to study age-dependent neurodegeneration of DA neurons in Drosophila: a climbing assay based on the startle-induced negative geotaxis response and tyrosine hydroxylase immunostaining of whole adult brain mounts to monitor the number of DA neurons at different ages. In both cases, in vivo expression of UAS transgenes specifically in DA neurons can be achieved by using a tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) promoter-Gal4 driver line (3, 10). PMID:23644755

  16. Visualization of Plasticity in Fear-Evoked Calcium Signals in Midbrain Dopamine Neurons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gore, Bryan B.; Soden, Marta E.; Zweifel, Larry S.

    2014-01-01

    Dopamine is broadly implicated in fear-related processes, yet we know very little about signaling dynamics in these neurons during active fear conditioning. We describe the direct imaging of calcium signals of dopamine neurons during Pavlovian fear conditioning using fiber-optic confocal microscopy coupled with the genetically encoded calcium…

  17. Aminochrome induces dopaminergic neuronal dysfunction: a new animal model for Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Andrea; Muñoz, Patricia; Paris, Irmgard; Díaz-Veliz, Gabriela; Mora, Sergio; Inzunza, Jose; Hultenby, Kjell; Cardenas, Cesar; Jaña, Fabián; Raisman-Vozari, Rita; Gysling, Katia; Abarca, Jorge; Steinbusch, Harry W M; Segura-Aguilar, Juan

    2016-09-01

    L-Dopa continues to be the gold drug in Parkinson's disease (PD) treatment from 1967. The failure to translate successful results from preclinical to clinical studies can be explained by the use of preclinical models which do not reflect what happens in the disease since these induce a rapid and extensive degeneration; for example, MPTP induces a severe Parkinsonism in only 3 days in humans contrasting with the slow degeneration and progression of PD. This study presents a new anatomy and develops preclinical model based on aminochrome which induces a slow and progressive dysfunction of dopaminergic neurons. The unilateral injection of aminochrome into rat striatum resulted in (1) contralateral rotation when the animals are stimulated with apomorphine; (2) absence of significant loss of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neuronal elements both in substantia nigra and striatum; (3) cell shrinkage; (4) significant reduction of dopamine release; (5) significant increase in GABA release; (6) significant decrease in the number of monoaminergic presynaptic vesicles; (7) significant increase of dopamine concentration inside of monoaminergic vesicles; (8) significant increase of damaged mitochondria; (9) significant decrease of ATP level in the striatum (10) significant decrease in basal and maximal mitochondrial respiration. These results suggest that aminochrome induces dysfunction of dopaminergic neurons where the contralateral behavior can be explained by aminochrome-induced ATP decrease required both for anterograde transport of synaptic vesicles and dopamine release. Aminochrome could be implemented as a new model neurotoxin to study Parkinson's disease. PMID:27001668

  18. Differentiation of Human Dental Pulp Stem Cells into Dopaminergic Neuron-like Cells in Vitro.

    PubMed

    Chun, So Young; Soker, Shay; Jang, Yu-Jin; Kwon, Tae Gyun; Yoo, Eun Sang

    2016-02-01

    We investigated the potential of human dental pulp stem cells (hDPSCs) to differentiate into dopaminergic neurons in vitro as an autologous stem cell source for Parkinson's disease treatment. The hDPSCs were expanded in knockout-embryonic stem cell (KO-ES) medium containing leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) on gelatin-coated plates for 3-4 days. Then, the medium was replaced with KO-ES medium without LIF to allow the formation of the neurosphere for 4 days. The neurosphere was transferred into ITS medium, containing ITS (human insulin-transferrin-sodium) and fibronectin, to select for Nestin-positive cells for 6-8 days. The cells were then cultured in N-2 medium containing basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF), FGF-8b, sonic hedgehog-N, and ascorbic acid on poly-l-ornithine/fibronectin-coated plates to expand the Nestin-positive cells for up to 2 weeks. Finally, the cells were transferred into N-2/ascorbic acid medium to allow for their differentiation into dopaminergic neurons for 10-15 days. The differentiation stages were confirmed by morphological, immunocytochemical, flow cytometric, real-time PCR, and ELISA analyses. The expressions of mesenchymal stem cell markers were observed at the early stages. The expressions of early neuronal markers were maintained throughout the differentiation stages. The mature neural markers showed increased expression from stage 3 onwards. The percentage of cells positive for tyrosine hydroxylase was 14.49%, and the amount was 0.526 ± 0.033 ng/mL at the last stage. hDPSCs can differentiate into dopaminergic neural cells under experimental cell differentiation conditions, showing potential as an autologous cell source for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. PMID:26839468

  19. A Conserved Role for p48 Homologs in Protecting Dopaminergic Neurons from Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Bou Dib, Peter; Gnägi, Bettina; Daly, Fiona; Sabado, Virginie; Tas, Damla; Glauser, Dominique A.; Meister, Peter; Nagoshi, Emi

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most common neurodegenerative movement disorder characterized by the progressive loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons. Both environmental and genetic factors are thought to contribute to the pathogenesis of PD. Although several genes linked to rare familial PD have been identified, endogenous risk factors for sporadic PD, which account for the majority of PD cases, remain largely unknown. Genome-wide association studies have identified many single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with sporadic PD in neurodevelopmental genes including the transcription factor p48/ptf1a. Here we investigate whether p48 plays a role in the survival of DA neurons in Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans. We show that a Drosophila p48 homolog, 48-related-2 (Fer2), is expressed in and required for the development and survival of DA neurons in the protocerebral anterior medial (PAM) cluster. Loss of Fer2 expression in adulthood causes progressive PAM neuron degeneration in aging flies along with mitochondrial dysfunction and elevated reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, leading to the progressive locomotor deficits. The oxidative stress challenge upregulates Fer2 expression and exacerbates the PAM neuron degeneration in Fer2 loss-of-function mutants. hlh-13, the worm homolog of p48, is also expressed in DA neurons. Unlike the fly counterpart, hlh-13 loss-of-function does not impair development or survival of DA neurons under normal growth conditions. Yet, similar to Fer2, hlh-13 expression is upregulated upon an acute oxidative challenge and is required for the survival of DA neurons under oxidative stress in adult worms. Taken together, our results indicate that p48 homologs share a role in protecting DA neurons from oxidative stress and degeneration, and suggest that loss-of-function of p48 homologs in flies and worms provides novel tools to study gene-environmental interactions affecting DA neuron survival. PMID:25340742

  20. Zdhhc15b Regulates Differentiation of Diencephalic Dopaminergic Neurons in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fen; Chen, Xueran; Shi, Wei; Yao, Linli; Gao, Ming; Yang, Yang; Hao, Aijun

    2015-12-01

    The aspartate-histidine-histidine-cysteine (DHHC) protein family shares a 50-amino acid cysteine-rich domain with a conserved DHHC signature motif. DHHC proteins play a critical role in several biological processes. Several DHHC family members have been implicated in neuronal differentiation and synaptic plasticity. And disruptions to their function can lead to disease in the nervous system. Here, we investigate the role of Zdhhc15b, a DHHC family member, in neuro development in zebrafish. Whole-mount in situ hybridization (WISH) revealed that zdhhc15b, an ortholog to human ZDHHC15, is abundant in zebrafish (Danio rerio) forebrain, especially in the diencephalon. Downregulation of zdhhc15b resulted in a smaller diencephalon and a reduction in mature dopaminergic neurons (DA neurons). In the meanshile, mutant zdhhc15b zebrafish was associated with poor learning behavior as detected by T-maze testing. The expression of zdhhc15b was upregulated during DA neuronal differentiation whereas knock-down of zdhhc15b diminished DA neuronal differentiation. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunofluorescence of cultured DA neurons in vitro also showed that DA neurons were immature following zdhhc15b knock-down. Consistent with the decreased number of DA neurons following knock-down of zdhhc15b, the expression of fate determination-related transcription factors such as nurr1, foxA2, and lmx1a were also reduced in morphant zebrafish. Our results reveal that zdhhc15b controls DA neuronal fate decisions by regulating differentiation but not progenitor cell proliferation or DA neuronal survival. PMID:26095893

  1. Sigma-1 receptor deficiency reduces MPTP-induced parkinsonism and death of dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hong, J; Sha, S; Zhou, L; Wang, C; Yin, J; Chen, L

    2015-01-01

    Sigma-1 receptor (σ1R) has been reported to be decreased in nigrostriatal motor system of Parkinson's disease patients. Using heterozygous and homozygous σ1R knockout (σ1R+/− and σ1R−/−) mice, we investigated the influence of σ1R deficiency on 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-impaired nigrostriatal motor system. The injection of MPTP for 5 weeks in wild-type mice (MPTP-WT mice), but not in σ1R+/− or σ1R−/− mice (MPTP-σ1R+/− or MPTP-σ1R−/− mice), caused motor deficits and ~40% death of dopaminergic neurons in substantia nigra pars compacta with an elevation of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAr) NR2B phosphorylation. The σ1R antagonist NE100 or the NR2B inhibitor Ro25-6981 could alleviate the motor deficits and the death of dopaminergic neurons in MPTP-WT mice. By contrast, MPTP-σ1R+/− mice treated with the σ1R agonist PRE084 or MPTP-σ1R−/− mice treated with the NMDAr agonist NMDA appeared to have similar motor deficits and loss of dopaminergic neurons as MPTP-WT mice. The pharmacological or genetic inactivation of σ1R suppressed the expression of dopamine transporter (DAT) in substantia nigra, which was corrected by NMDA. The activation of σ1R by PRE084 enhanced the DAT expression in WT mice or σ1R+/− mice. By contrast, the level of vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2) in σ1R+/− mice or σ1R−/− mice had no difference from WT mice. Interestingly, MPTP-WT mice showed the reduction in the levels of DAT and VMAT2, but MPTP-σ1R−/− mice did not. The inactivation of σ1R by NE100 could prevent the reduction of VMAT2 in MPTP-WT mice. In addition, the activation of microglia cells in substantia nigra was equally enhanced in MPTP-WT mice and MPTP-σ1R−/− mice. The number of activated astrocytes in MPTP-σ1R−/− mice was less than that in MPTP-WT mice. The findings indicate that the σ1R deficiency through suppressing NMDAr function and DAT expression can reduce MPTP-induced death of

  2. Maneb-induced dopaminergic neuronal death is not affected by loss of mitochondrial complex I activity: Results from primary mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons cultured from individual Ndufs4+/+ and Ndufs4-/- mouse embryos

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Won-Seok; Xia, Zhengui

    2014-01-01

    Primary cultures from embryonic mouse ventral mesencephalon are widely used for investigating the mechanisms of dopaminergic neuronal death in Parkinson's disease models. Specifically, single mouse or embryo cultures from littermates can be very useful for comparative studies involving transgenic mice when the neuron cultures are to be prepared before genotyping. However, preparing single mouse embryo culture is technically challenging because of the small number of cells present in the mesencephalon of each embryo (150,000-300,000), of which only 0.5-5% are tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) -positive, dopaminergic neurons. In this study, we optimized the procedure for preparing primary mesencephalic neuron cultures from individual mouse embryos. Mesencephalic neurons that are dissociated delicately, plated on Aclar film coverslips, and incubated in DMEM supplemented with FBS for 5 days and then N2 supplement for 1 day resulted in the best survival of dopaminergic neurons from each embryo. Using this optimized method, we prepared mesencephalic neuron cultures from single Ndufs4+/+ or Ndufs4-/- embryos, and investigated the role of mitochondrial complex I in maneb-induced dopamine neuron death. Our results suggest that maneb toxicity to dopamine neurons is not affected by loss of mitochondrial complex I activity in Ndufs4-/- cultures. PMID:25275677

  3. Neuroprotective effects of pyrroloquinoline quinone against rotenone injury in primary cultured midbrain neurons and in a rat model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qi; Chen, Shuhua; Yu, Shu; Qin, Jiaojiao; Zhang, Jingjing; Cheng, Qiong; Ke, Kaifu; Ding, Fei

    2016-09-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress have been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), a redox cofactor in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, has been reported to protect SH-SY5Y cells from cytotoxicity induced by rotenone, a mitochondrial complex I inhibitor. In this study, we aimed to investigate the neuroprotective effects of PQQ against rotenone injury in primary cultured midbrain neurons and in a rat model of Parkinson's disease. Pre-treatment with PQQ prevented cultured midbrain neurons from rotenone-induced apoptosis, restored mitochondrial membrane potential, inhibited intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and affected microtubule depolymerization. On the other hand, intraperitoneal administration of PQQ exerted protective effects on rats that had received rotenone injection into the medial forebrain bundle through decreasing the apomorphine-evoked rotation, inhibiting neuronal loss and TH down-regulation in SNc, increasing the antioxidative ability, and regulating intracellular expressions of Ndufs1 and Ndufs 4. Silencing of Ndufs1 or Ndufs4 in cultured SH-SY5Y cells or midbrain neurons reduced the neuroprotective effects of PQQ. Overall, our results suggest that PQQ neuroprotection may be mediated by the inhibition of mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress as well as by the gene modulation of Ndufs1 and Ndufs4. PMID:27108097

  4. Live imaging of mitochondrial dynamics in CNS dopaminergic neurons in vivo demonstrates early reversal of mitochondrial transport following MPP(+) exposure.

    PubMed

    Dukes, April A; Bai, Qing; Van Laar, Victor S; Zhou, Yangzhong; Ilin, Vladimir; David, Christopher N; Agim, Zeynep S; Bonkowsky, Joshua L; Cannon, Jason R; Watkins, Simon C; Croix, Claudette M St; Burton, Edward A; Berman, Sarah B

    2016-11-01

    Extensive convergent evidence collectively suggests that mitochondrial dysfunction is central to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Recently, changes in the dynamic properties of mitochondria have been increasingly implicated as a key proximate mechanism underlying neurodegeneration. However, studies have been limited by the lack of a model in which mitochondria can be imaged directly and dynamically in dopaminergic neurons of the intact vertebrate CNS. We generated transgenic zebrafish in which mitochondria of dopaminergic neurons are labeled with a fluorescent reporter, and optimized methods allowing direct intravital imaging of CNS dopaminergic axons and measurement of mitochondrial transport in vivo. The proportion of mitochondria undergoing axonal transport in dopaminergic neurons decreased overall during development between 2days post-fertilization (dpf) and 5dpf, at which point the major period of growth and synaptogenesis of the relevant axonal projections is complete. Exposure to 0.5-1.0mM MPP(+) between 4 and 5dpf did not compromise zebrafish viability or cause detectable changes in the number or morphology of dopaminergic neurons, motor function or monoaminergic neurochemistry. However, 0.5mM MPP(+) caused a 300% increase in retrograde mitochondrial transport and a 30% decrease in anterograde transport. In contrast, exposure to higher concentrations of MPP(+) caused an overall reduction in mitochondrial transport. This is the first time mitochondrial transport has been observed directly in CNS dopaminergic neurons of a living vertebrate and quantified in a PD model in vivo. Our findings are compatible with a model in which damage at presynaptic dopaminergic terminals causes an early compensatory increase in retrograde transport of compromised mitochondria for degradation in the cell body. These data are important because manipulation of early pathogenic mechanisms might be a valid therapeutic approach to PD. The novel transgenic lines and

  5. Induction of A9 dopaminergic neurons from neural stem cells improves motor function in an animal model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    O'Keeffe, Fiona E; Scott, Sarah A; Tyers, Pam; O'Keeffe, Gerard W; Dalley, Jeffrey W; Zufferey, Romain; Caldwell, Maeve A

    2008-03-01

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) are widely endorsed as a cell source for replacement strategies in neurodegenerative disease. However, their usefulness is currently limited by the inability to induce specific neurotransmitter phenotypes in these cells. In order to direct dopaminergic neuronal fate, we overexpressed Pitx3 in NSCs that were then exposed to E11 developing ventral mesencephalon (VM) in explant culture. This resulted in a significant potentiation of dopaminergic differentiation of the cells. When transplanted into the 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned Parkinsonian rats, these cografts of VM and Pitx3 overexpressing NSCs resulted in a significant restitution of motor function. In addition, there were greater numbers of Girk2 positive A9 neurons in the periphery of the transplants that were NSC derived. This demonstrates that given the correct signals, NSCs can be induced to become dopaminergic neurons that can differentiate into the correct nigrastriatal phenotype required for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. PMID:18202103

  6. Cannabinoid CB2 receptors modulate midbrain dopamine neuronal activity and dopamine-related behavior in mice

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hai-Ying; Gao, Ming; Liu, Qing-Rong; Bi, Guo-Hua; Li, Xia; Yang, Hong-Ju; Gardner, Eliot L.; Wu, Jie

    2014-01-01

    Cannabinoid CB2 receptors (CB2Rs) have been recently reported to modulate brain dopamine (DA)-related behaviors; however, the cellular mechanisms underlying these actions are unclear. Here we report that CB2Rs are expressed in ventral tegmental area (VTA) DA neurons and functionally modulate DA neuronal excitability and DA-related behavior. In situ hybridization and immunohistochemical assays detected CB2 mRNA and CB2R immunostaining in VTA DA neurons. Electrophysiological studies demonstrated that activation of CB2Rs by JWH133 or other CB2R agonists inhibited VTA DA neuronal firing in vivo and ex vivo, whereas microinjections of JWH133 into the VTA inhibited cocaine self-administration. Importantly, all of the above findings observed in WT or CB1−/− mice are blocked by CB2R antagonist and absent in CB2−/− mice. These data suggest that CB2R-mediated reduction of VTA DA neuronal activity may underlie JWH133's modulation of DA-regulated behaviors. PMID:25368177

  7. Opposing Dopaminergic and GABAergic Neurons Control the Duration and Persistence of Copulation in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Crickmore, Michael A.; Vosshall, Leslie B.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Behavioral persistence is a major factor in determiningwhen and under which circumstances animals will terminate their current activity and transition into more profitable, appropriate, or urgent behavior. We show that, for the first 5 min of copulation in Drosophila, stressful stimuli do not interrupt mating, whereas 10 min later, even minor perturbations are sufficient to terminate copulation. This decline in persistence occurs as the probability of successful mating increases and is promoted by approximately eight sexually dimorphic, GABAergic interneurons of the male abdominal ganglion. When these interneurons were silenced, persistence increased and males copulated far longer than required for successful mating. When these interneurons were stimulated, persistence decreased and copulations were shortened. In contrast, dopaminergic neurons of the ventral nerve cord promote copulation persistence and extend copulation duration. Thus, copulation duration in Drosophila is a product of gradually declining persistence controlled by opposing neuronal populations using conserved neurotransmission systems. PMID:24209625

  8. Non-linear developmental trajectory of electrical phenotype in rat substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dufour, Martial A; Woodhouse, Adele; Amendola, Julien; Goaillard, Jean-Marc

    2014-01-01

    Neurons have complex electrophysiological properties, however, it is often difficult to determine which properties are the most relevant to neuronal function. By combining current-clamp measurements of electrophysiological properties with multi-variate analysis (hierarchical clustering, principal component analysis), we were able to characterize the postnatal development of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons' electrical phenotype in an unbiased manner, such that subtle changes in phenotype could be analyzed. We show that the intrinsic electrical phenotype of these neurons follows a non-linear trajectory reaching maturity by postnatal day 14, with two developmental transitions occurring between postnatal days 3–5 and 9–11. This approach also predicted which parameters play a critical role in phenotypic variation, enabling us to determine (using pharmacology, dynamic-clamp) that changes in the leak, sodium and calcium-activated potassium currents are central to these two developmental transitions. This analysis enables an unbiased definition of neuronal type/phenotype that is applicable to a range of research questions. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04059.001 PMID:25329344

  9. Alcohol consumption induces global gene expression changes in VTA dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Marballi, K; Genabai, N K; Blednov, Y A; Harris, R A; Ponomarev, I

    2016-03-01

    Alcoholism is associated with dysregulation in the neural circuitry that mediates motivated and goal-directed behaviors. The dopaminergic (DA) connection between the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and the nucleus accumbens is viewed as a critical component of the neurocircuitry mediating alcohol's rewarding and behavioral effects. We sought to determine the effects of binge alcohol drinking on global gene expression in VTA DA neurons. Alcohol-preferring C57BL/6J × FVB/NJ F1 hybrid female mice were exposed to a modified drinking in the dark (DID) procedure for 3 weeks, while control animals had access to water only. Global gene expression of laser-captured tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive VTA DA neurons was measured using microarrays. A total of 644 transcripts were differentially expressed between the drinking and nondrinking mice, and 930 transcripts correlated with alcohol intake during the last 2 days of drinking in the alcohol group. Bioinformatics analysis of alcohol-responsive genes identified molecular pathways and networks perturbed in DA neurons by alcohol consumption, which included neuroimmune and epigenetic functions, alcohol metabolism and brain disorders. The majority of genes with high and specific expression in DA neurons were downregulated by or negatively correlated with alcohol consumption, suggesting a decreased activity of DA neurons in high drinking animals. These changes in the DA transcriptome provide a foundation for alcohol-induced neuroadaptations that may play a crucial role in the transition to addiction. PMID:26482798

  10. Myricitrin Ameliorates 6-Hydroxydopamine-Induced Dopaminergic Neuronal Loss in the Substantia Nigra of Mouse Brain.

    PubMed

    Kim, Heung Deok; Jeong, Kyoung Hoon; Jung, Un Ju; Kim, Sang Ryong

    2016-04-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a chronic and progressive movement disorder, resulting from the degeneration of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic (DA) pathway. The cause of DA neuronal loss in PD is still unclear; however, accumulating evidence suggests that treatment with certain flavonoids can induce neuroprotective properties, such as activation of mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) and anti-inflammatory activities in animal models of PD. The bioflavonoid myricitrin is well known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. However, it is unclear whether systemic treatment with myricitrin can protect neurons against neurotoxin-induced DA degeneration in vivo via the preservation of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) activity and the induction of mTORC1 activation. Our results found no significant neuroprotective effect of 30 mg/kg myricitrin on 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced neurotoxicity in the substantia nigra (SN) of mice. However, myricitrin treatment with 60 mg/kg protected DA neurons against 6-OHDA-induced neurotoxicity. Moreover, myricitrin treatment preserved TH enzyme activity and mTORC1 activation in nigral DA neurons in the SN of 6-OHDA-treated mice, and its treatment suppressed an increase in tumor necrosis factor-α expression in activated microglia. These results suggest that myricitrin may have neuroprotective properties linked to mTORC1 activation, preservation of TH enzyme activity, and anti-neuroinflammation for preventing DA neuronal degeneration in vivo. PMID:26991235

  11. Withania somnifera alleviates parkinsonian phenotypes by inhibiting apoptotic pathways in dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Prakash, Jay; Chouhan, Shikha; Yadav, Satyndra Kumar; Westfall, Susan; Rai, Sachchida Nand; Singh, Surya Pratap

    2014-12-01

    Maneb (MB) and paraquat (PQ) are environmental toxins that have been experimentally used to induce selective damage of dopaminergic neurons leading to the development of Parkinson's disease (PD). Although the mechanism of this selective neuronal toxicity in not fully understood, oxidative stress has been linked to the pathogenesis of PD. The present study investigates the mechanisms of neuroprotection elicited by Withania somnifera (Ws), a herb traditionally recognized by the Indian system of medicine, Ayurveda. An ethanolic root extract of Ws was co-treated with the MB-PQ induced mouse model of PD and was shown to significantly rescue canonical indicators of PD including compromised locomotor activity, reduced dopamine in the substantia nigra and various aspects of oxidative damage. In particular, Ws reduced the expression of iNOS, a measure of oxidative stress. Ws also significantly improved the MB + PQ mediated induction of a pro-apoptotic state by reducing Bax and inducing Bcl-2 protein expression, respectively. Finally, Ws reduced expression of the pro-inflammatory marker of astrocyte activation, GFAP. Altogether, the present study suggests that Ws treatment provides nigrostriatal dopaminergic neuroprotection against MB-PQ induced Parkinsonism by the modulation of oxidative stress and apoptotic machinery possibly accounting for the behavioural effects. PMID:25403619

  12. A critical period of vulnerability to adolescent stress: epigenetic mediators in mesocortical dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Niwa, Minae; Lee, Richard S; Tanaka, Teppei; Okada, Kinya; Kano, Shin-Ichi; Sawa, Akira

    2016-04-01

    The molecular basis of vulnerability to stress during the adolescent period is largely unknown. To identify potential molecular mediators that may play a role in stress-induced behavioral deficits, we imposed social isolation on a genetically vulnerable mouse model. We report that 3-week (5-8 weeks of age) adolescent stress in combination with disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (Disc1) genetic risk elicits alterations in DNA methylation of a specific set of genes, tyrosine hydroxylase, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and FK506 binding protein 5. The epigenetic changes in the mesocortical dopaminergic neurons were prevented when animals were treated with a glucocorticoid receptor (GR) antagonist RU486 during social isolation, which implicates the role for glucocorticoid signaling in this pathological event. We define the critical period of GR intervention as the first 1-week period during the stress regimen, suggesting that this particular week in adolescence may be a specific period of maturation and function of mesocortical dopaminergic neurons and their sensitivity to glucocorticoids. Our study may also imply the clinical significance of early detection and prophylactic intervention against conditions associated with adolescent social stress in individuals with genetic risk. PMID:26908623

  13. Severe dopaminergic neuron loss in rhesus monkey brain impairs morphine-induced conditioned place preference

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Ting; Rizak, Joshua Dominic; Wang, Jianhong; Yang, Shangchuan; Ma, Yuanye; Hu, Xintian

    2015-01-01

    It is well known that dopamine (DA) is critical for reward, but the precise role of DA in reward remains uncertain. The aim of this study was to determine what percentage of dopaminergic neurons in the primate brain is required for the expression of conditioned reward by measuring the performance of DA-deficient rhesus monkeys in a morphine-induced conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Animals with mild Parkinsonian symptoms successfully developed and retained a morphine preference that was equivalent to control monkeys. However, these monkeys could not maintain the preference as well as controls when they retained severe Parkinsonian symptoms. On the other hand, monkeys initially in a severe Parkinsonian state developed a preference for morphine, but this preference was weaker than that of the controls. Histological results showed that the loss of dopaminergic neurons in monkeys that had severe Parkinsonian symptoms was about 80% in comparison to the control monkeys. All these data suggest that a severely impaired DA system alters rewarding-seeking behavior in non-human primates. PMID:26528155

  14. Uncoupling of ATP-depletion and cell death in human dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Pöltl, Dominik; Schildknecht, Stefan; Karreman, Christiaan; Leist, Marcel

    2012-08-01

    The mitochondrial inhibitor 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+)) is the toxicologically relevant metabolite of 1-methyl-4-phenyltetrahydropyridine (MPTP), which causes relatively selective degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. Dopaminergic LUHMES cells were used to investigate whether ATP-depletion can be uncoupled from cell death as a downstream event in these fully post-mitotic human neurons. Biochemical assays indicated that in the homogeneously differentiated cell cultures, MPP(+) was taken up by the dopamine transporter (DAT). MPP(+) then triggered oxidative stress and caspase activation, as well as ATP-depletion followed by cell death. Enhanced survival of the neurons in the presence of agents interfering with mitochondrial pathology, such as the fission inhibitor Mdivi-1 or a Bax channel blocker suggested a pivotal role of mitochondria in this model. However, these compounds did not prevent cellular ATP-depletion. To further investigate whether cells could be rescued despite respiratory chain inhibition by MPP(+), we have chosen a diverse set of pharmacological inhibitors well-known to interfere with MPP(+) toxicity. The antioxidant ascorbate, the iron chelator desferoxamine, the stress kinase inhibitor CEP1347, and different caspase inhibitors reduced cell death, but allowed ATP-depletion in protected cells. None of these compounds interfered with MPP(+) accumulation in the cells. These findings suggest that ATP-depletion, as the initial mitochondrial effect of MPP(+), requires further downstream processes to result in neuronal death. These processes may form self-enhancing signaling loops, that aggravate an initial energetic impairment and eventually determine cell fate. PMID:22206971

  15. Ghrelin modulates the activity and synaptic input organization of midbrain dopamine neurons while promoting appetite

    PubMed Central

    Abizaid, Alfonso; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Andrews, Zane B.; Shanabrough, Marya; Borok, Erzsebet; Elsworth, John D.; Roth, Robert H.; Sleeman, Mark W.; Picciotto, Marina R.; Tschöp, Matthias H.; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Horvath, Tamas L.

    2006-01-01

    The gut hormone ghrelin targets the brain to promote food intake and adiposity. The ghrelin receptor growth hormone secretagogue 1 receptor (GHSR) is present in hypothalamic centers controlling energy metabolism as well as in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a region important for motivational aspects of multiple behaviors, including feeding. Here we show that in mice and rats, ghrelin bound to neurons of the VTA, where it triggered increased dopamine neuronal activity, synapse formation, and dopamine turnover in the nucleus accumbens in a GHSR-dependent manner. Direct VTA administration of ghrelin also triggered feeding, while intra-VTA delivery of a selective GHSR antagonist blocked the orexigenic effect of circulating ghrelin and blunted rebound feeding following fasting. In addition, ghrelin- and GHSR-deficient mice showed attenuated feeding responses to restricted feeding schedules. Taken together, these data suggest that the mesolimbic reward circuitry is targeted by peripheral ghrelin to influence physiological mechanisms related to feeding. PMID:17060947

  16. Midbrain catecholaminergic neurons co-express α-synuclein and tau in progressive supranuclear palsy

    PubMed Central

    Erro Aguirre, María Elena; Zelaya, María Victoria; Sánchez Ruiz de Gordoa, Javier; Tuñón, María Teresa; Lanciego, José Luis

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To analyze the frequency and distribution of α-synuclein deposits in progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP). Methods: The brains of 25 cases of pathologically confirmed PSP were evaluated with immunohistochemistry for α-synuclein and tau. Multiple immunofluorescent stains were applied to analyze the expression of tau and α-synuclein aggregates in catecholaminergic neurons. Patients’ clinical symptoms were retrospectively recorded. Results: Deposits α-synuclein in the form of typical Lewy bodies (LBs) were only found in two PSP cases (8%) that fulfilled the clinical subtype of PSP known as Richardson’s syndrome (RS). LBs were present in the locus ceruleus (LC), substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc), basal forebrain, amygdala and cingulated cortex in a distribution mimicking that of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Triple-immunolabeling revealed co-expression of α-synuclein and tau proteins in some tyrosine hydroxilase (TH)-positive neurons of the LC and SNc. Conclusions: There is no apparent clinical correlation between the presence of LBs in PSP. Tau protein co-aggregate with α-synuclein in catecholaminergic neurons of PSP brains suggesting a synergistic interaction between the two proteins. This is in keeping with the current view of neurodegenerative disorders as “misfolded protein diseases”. PMID:25814937

  17. Dopaminergic modulation of axonal potassium channels and action potential waveform in pyramidal neurons of prefrontal cortex.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jing; Ye, Mingyu; Tian, Cuiping; Yang, Mingpo; Wang, Yonghong; Shu, Yousheng

    2013-07-01

    Voltage-gated K(+) (KV) channels play critical roles in shaping neuronal signals. KV channels distributed in the perisomatic regions and thick dendrites of cortical pyramidal neurons have been extensively studied. However, the properties and regulation of KV channels distributed in the thin axons remain unknown. In this study, by performing somatic and axonal patch-clamp recordings from layer 5 pyramidal neurons of prefrontal cortical slices, we showed that the rapidly inactivating A-currents mediated the transient K(+) currents evoked by action potential (AP) waveform command (KAP) at the soma, whereas the rapidly activating but slowly inactivating KV1-mediated D-currents dominated the KAP at the axon. In addition, activation of D1-like receptors for dopamine decreased the axonal K(+) currents, as a result of an increase in the activity of cAMP-PKA pathway. In contrast, activation of D2-like receptors showed an opposite effect on the axonal K(+) currents. Further experiments demonstrated that functional D1-like receptors were expressed at the main axon trunk and their activation could broaden the waveforms of axonal APs. Together, these results show that axonal KV channels were subjected to dopamine modulation, and this modulation could regulate the waveforms of propagating APs at the axon, suggesting an important role of dopaminergic modulation of axonal KV channels in regulating neuronal signalling. PMID:23568892

  18. Kappa Opioid Receptors on Dopaminergic Neurons Are Necessary for Kappa-Mediated Place Aversion

    PubMed Central

    Chefer, Vladimir I; Bäckman, Cristina M; Gigante, Eduardo D; Shippenberg, Toni S

    2013-01-01

    Kappa-opioid receptor (KOR) agonists have dysphoric properties in humans and are aversive in rodents. This has been attributed to the activation of KORs within the mesolimbic dopamine (DA) system. However, the role of DA in KOR-mediated aversion and stress remains divisive as recent studies have suggested that activation of KORs on serotonergic neurons may be sufficient to mediate aversive behaviors. To address this question, we used conditional knock-out (KO) mice with KORs deleted on DA neurons (DATCre/wt/KORloxp/loxp, or DATCre-KOR KO). In agreement with previous findings, control mice (DATCre/wt/KORwt/wt or WT) showed conditioned place aversion (CPA) to the systemically administered KOR agonist U69,593. In contrast, DATCre-KOR KO mice did not exhibit CPA with this same agonist. In addition, in vivo microdialysis showed that systemic U69,593 decreased overflow of DA in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) in WT mice, but had no effect in DATCre-KOR KO mice. Intra- ventral tegmental area (VTA) delivery of KORs using an adeno-associated viral gene construct, resulted in phenotypic rescue of the KOR-mediated NAc DA response and aversive behavior in DATCre-KOR KO animals. These results provide evidence that KORs on VTA DA neurons are necessary to mediate KOR-mediated aversive behavior. Therefore, our data, along with recent findings, suggest that the neuronal mechanisms of KOR-mediated aversive behavior may include both dopaminergic and serotonergic components. PMID:23921954

  19. Synergy of AMPA and NMDA Receptor Currents in Dopaminergic Neurons: A Modeling Study.

    PubMed

    Zakharov, Denis; Lapish, Christopher; Gutkin, Boris; Kuznetsov, Alexey

    2016-01-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) neurons display two modes of firing: low-frequency tonic and high-frequency bursts. The high frequency firing within the bursts is attributed to NMDA, but not AMPA receptor activation. In our models of the DA neuron, both biophysical and abstract, the NMDA receptor current can significantly increase their firing frequency, whereas the AMPA receptor current is not able to evoke high-frequency activity and usually suppresses firing. However, both currents are produced by glutamate receptors and, consequently, are often co-activated. Here we consider combined influence of AMPA and NMDA synaptic input in the models of the DA neuron. Different types of neuronal activity (resting state, low frequency, or high frequency firing) are observed depending on the conductance of the AMPAR and NMDAR currents. In two models, biophysical and reduced, we show that the firing frequency increases more effectively if both receptors are co-activated for certain parameter values. In particular, in the more quantitative biophysical model, the maximal frequency is 40% greater than that with NMDAR alone. The dynamical mechanism of such frequency growth is explained in the framework of phase space evolution using the reduced model. In short, both the AMPAR and NMDAR currents flatten the voltage nullcline, providing the frequency increase, whereas only NMDA prevents complete unfolding of the nullcline, providing robust firing. Thus, we confirm a major role of the NMDAR in generating high-frequency firing and conclude that AMPAR activation further significantly increases the frequency. PMID:27252643

  20. Synergy of AMPA and NMDA Receptor Currents in Dopaminergic Neurons: A Modeling Study

    PubMed Central

    Zakharov, Denis; Lapish, Christopher; Gutkin, Boris; Kuznetsov, Alexey

    2016-01-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) neurons display two modes of firing: low-frequency tonic and high-frequency bursts. The high frequency firing within the bursts is attributed to NMDA, but not AMPA receptor activation. In our models of the DA neuron, both biophysical and abstract, the NMDA receptor current can significantly increase their firing frequency, whereas the AMPA receptor current is not able to evoke high-frequency activity and usually suppresses firing. However, both currents are produced by glutamate receptors and, consequently, are often co-activated. Here we consider combined influence of AMPA and NMDA synaptic input in the models of the DA neuron. Different types of neuronal activity (resting state, low frequency, or high frequency firing) are observed depending on the conductance of the AMPAR and NMDAR currents. In two models, biophysical and reduced, we show that the firing frequency increases more effectively if both receptors are co-activated for certain parameter values. In particular, in the more quantitative biophysical model, the maximal frequency is 40% greater than that with NMDAR alone. The dynamical mechanism of such frequency growth is explained in the framework of phase space evolution using the reduced model. In short, both the AMPAR and NMDAR currents flatten the voltage nullcline, providing the frequency increase, whereas only NMDA prevents complete unfolding of the nullcline, providing robust firing. Thus, we confirm a major role of the NMDAR in generating high-frequency firing and conclude that AMPAR activation further significantly increases the frequency. PMID:27252643

  1. Differential Regulation of Action Potential Shape and Burst-Frequency Firing by BK and Kv2 Channels in Substantia Nigra Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kimm, Tilia; Khaliq, Zayd M.

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the voltage-dependent potassium currents underlying spike repolarization in midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Studying mouse substantia nigra pars compacta dopaminergic neurons both in brain slice and after acute dissociation, we found that BK calcium-activated potassium channels and Kv2 channels both make major contributions to the depolarization-activated potassium current. Inhibiting Kv2 or BK channels had very different effects on spike shape and evoked firing. Inhibiting Kv2 channels increased spike width and decreased the afterhyperpolarization, as expected for loss of an action potential-activated potassium conductance. BK inhibition also increased spike width but paradoxically increased the afterhyperpolarization. Kv2 channel inhibition steeply increased the slope of the frequency–current (f–I) relationship, whereas BK channel inhibition had little effect on the f–I slope or decreased it, sometimes resulting in slowed firing. Action potential clamp experiments showed that both BK and Kv2 current flow during spike repolarization but with very different kinetics, with Kv2 current activating later and deactivating more slowly. Further experiments revealed that inhibiting either BK or Kv2 alone leads to recruitment of additional current through the other channel type during the action potential as a consequence of changes in spike shape. Enhancement of slowly deactivating Kv2 current can account for the increased afterhyperpolarization produced by BK inhibition and likely underlies the very different effects on the f–I relationship. The cross-regulation of BK and Kv2 activation illustrates that the functional role of a channel cannot be defined in isolation but depends critically on the context of the other conductances in the cell. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT This work shows that BK calcium-activated potassium channels and Kv2 voltage-activated potassium channels both regulate action potentials in dopamine neurons of the substantia nigra

  2. Species specificity of temporal processing in the auditory midbrain of gray treefrogs: long-interval neurons.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Jessica L; Rose, Gary J; Leary, Christopher J; Graham, Jalina A; Alluri, Rishi K; Vasquez-Opazo, Gustavo A

    2016-01-01

    In recently diverged gray treefrogs (Hyla chrysoscelis and H. versicolor), advertisement calls that differ primarily in pulse shape and pulse rate act as an important premating isolation mechanism. Temporally selective neurons in the anuran inferior colliculus may contribute to selective behavioral responses to these calls. Here we present in vivo extracellular and whole-cell recordings from long-interval-selective neurons (LINs) made during presentation of pulses that varied in shape and rate. Whole-cell recordings revealed that interplay between excitation and inhibition shapes long-interval selectivity. LINs in H. versicolor showed greater selectivity for slow-rise pulses, consistent with the slow-rise pulse characteristics of their calls. The steepness of pulse-rate tuning functions, but not the distributions of best pulse rates, differed between the species in a manner that depended on whether pulses had slow or fast-rise shape. When tested with stimuli representing the temporal structure of the advertisement calls of H. chrysoscelis or H. versicolor, approximately 27 % of LINs in H. versicolor responded exclusively to the latter stimulus type. The LINs of H. chrysoscelis were less selective. Encounter calls, which are produced at similar pulse rates in both species (≈5 pulses/s), are likely to be effective stimuli for the LINs of both species. PMID:26614093

  3. Are Striatal Tyrosine Hydroxylase Interneurons Dopaminergic?

    PubMed Central

    Xenias, Harry S.; Ibáñez-Sandoval, Osvaldo; Koós, Tibor

    2015-01-01

    Striatal GABAergic interneurons that express the gene for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) have been identified previously by several methods. Although generally assumed to be dopaminergic, possibly serving as a compensatory source of dopamine (DA) in Parkinson's disease, this assumption has never been tested directly. In TH–Cre mice whose nigrostriatal pathway had been eliminated unilaterally with 6-hydroxydopamine, we injected a Cre-dependent virus coding for channelrhodopsin-2 and enhanced yellow fluorescent protein unilaterally into the unlesioned midbrain or bilaterally into the striatum. Fast-scan cyclic voltammetry in striatal slices revealed that both optical and electrical stimulation readily elicited DA release in control striata but not from contralateral striata when nigrostriatal neurons were transduced. In contrast, neither optical nor electrical stimulation could elicit striatal DA release in either the control or lesioned striata when the virus was injected directly into the striatum transducing only striatal TH interneurons. This demonstrates that striatal TH interneurons do not release DA. Fluorescence immunocytochemistry in enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)–TH mice revealed colocalization of DA, l-amino acid decarboxylase, the DA transporter, and vesicular monoamine transporter-2 with EGFP in midbrain dopaminergic neurons but not in any of the striatal EGFP–TH interneurons. Optogenetic activation of striatal EGFP–TH interneurons produced strong GABAergic inhibition in all spiny neurons tested. These results indicate that striatal TH interneurons are not dopaminergic but rather are a type of GABAergic interneuron that expresses TH but none of the other enzymes or transporters necessary to operate as dopaminergic neurons and exert widespread GABAergic inhibition onto direct and indirect spiny neurons. PMID:25904808

  4. Postmitotic, postmigrational expression of tyrosine hydroxylase in olfactory bulb dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    McLean, J H; Shipley, M T

    1988-10-01

    The developmental expression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TOH) was studied in a large, specific population of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the main olfactory bulb (MOB) of the rat. These DA neurons comprise an anatomically distinctive population that has been well characterized in the adult hamster (Davis and Macrides, 1983) and rat (Halasz et al., 1981; Baker et al., 1983, 1984). We addressed a basic question in developmental neurobiology: What factors regulate the expression of neuronal transmitter phenotype during development? Olfactory bulb DA neurons are born in the ventricular and subependymal zones and migrate through all intervening layers to the most superficial layer in the bulb (Altman, 1969; Bayer, 1983). The time of TOH expression in these neurons was determined using immunohistochemistry and light microscopic image-analysis techniques. The results indicate that TOH phenotype is not expressed when the cells are born in the subependymal zone nor during their migration to the periglomerular region but only after they reached their final destination, the glomerular layer. This suggests that epigenetic factors associated with the glomeruli initiate the expression of the key transmitter synthesizing enzyme in these neurons. Primary olfactory neurons in the nasal epithelium project exclusively to glomeruli of the MOB; removal of this input in adult rats (Kawano and Margolis, 1982; Baker et al., 1983, 1984), mice (Nadi et al., 1981; Baker et al., 1983), dogs (Nadi et al., 1981), and hamsters (Kream et al., 1984) appears to down-regulate the expression of the TOH in periglomerular cells. The present results suggested that the input from the primary olfactory nerve is also necessary for the initial expression of the TOH phenotype. In support of this notion, we found that lesions of the olfactory nerve during the first postnatal week caused a significant reduction in the number of TOH-positive juxtaglomerular neurons in the following weeks. Thus, the olfactory nerve

  5. Effects of the anti-dementia drug hopantenate calcium upon striatal dopaminergic neurons in young and aged rats.

    PubMed

    Toide, K

    1989-01-01

    In the present study we investigated the effects of the anti-dementia drug calcium D-(+)-4-(2,4-dihydroxy-3,3-dimethyl-butyramido) butyrate hemihydrate (hopantenate) on the dopaminergic neurons of rats, and also compared the effects of the drug on dopaminergic neurons in young adult rats (4 months old) and aged rats (21 months old). Hopantenate 1000 mg/kg, p.o. significantly increased striatal dopamine (DA) levels, but displayed almost no effect upon the DOPAC and HVA levels. Furthermore, we investigated the effects of hopantenate upon tyrosine hydroxylase activity by examining NSD-1015-induced L-DOPA accumulation and found that hopantenate 1000 mg/kg, p.o. significantly increased the L-DOPA accumulation. In addition, comparing the effect of hopantenate on dopaminergic neurons in young adult rats and aged rats, we found that the striatal DA, DOPAC and HVA levels were decreased as a concomitant of aging, and hopantenate 1000 mg/kg, p.o. significantly increased DA and DOPAC levels in both ages. The above results clearly indicate that hopantenate enhanced DA biosynthesis by stimulating the activity of tyrosine hydroxylase. Furthermore, the results of hopantenate upon dopaminergic neurons in young adult rats and aged rats suggest that sensitivity to the drug may not be different with age, though the striatal DA, DOPAC and HVA levels of rats were decreased as a concomitant of aging. PMID:2570556

  6. Neuroprotective effects of tadalafil on gerbil dopaminergic neurons following cerebral ischemia.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kwang Taek; Chung, Kyung Jin; Lee, Han Sae; Ko, Il Gyu; Kim, Chang Ju; Na, Yong Gil; Kim, Khae Hawn

    2013-03-15

    Impairment of dopamine function, which is known to have major effects on behaviors and cognition, is one of the main problems associated with cerebral ischemia. Tadalafil, a long-acting phosphodiesterase type-5 inhibitor, is known to ameliorate neurologic impairment induced by brain injury, but not in dopaminergic regions. We investigated the neuroprotective effects of treatment with tadalafil on cyclic guanosine monophosphate level and dopamine function following cerebral ischemia. Forty adult Mongolian gerbils were randomly and evenly divided into five groups (n = 8 in each group): Sham-operation group, cerebral ischemia-induced and 0, 0.1, 1, and 10 mg/kg tadalafil-treated groups, respectively. Tadalafil dissolved in distilled water was administered orally for 7 consecutive days, starting 1 day after surgery. Cyclic guanosine monophosphate assay and immunohistochemistry were performed for thyrosine hydroxylase expression and western blot analysis for dopamine D2 receptor expression. A decrease in cyclic guanosine monophosphate level following cerebral ischemia was found with an increase in thyrosine hydroxylase activity and a decrease in dopamine D2 receptor expression in the striatum and substantia nigra region. However, treatment with tadalafil increased cyclic guanosine monophosphate expression, suppressed thyrosine hydroxylase expression and increased dopamine D2 receptor expression in the striatum and substantia nigra region in a dose-dependent manner. Tadalafil might ameliorate cerebral ischemia-induced dopaminergic neuron injury. Therefore, tadalafil has the potential as a new neuroprotective treatment strategy for cerebral ischemic injury. PMID:25206715

  7. Improvement of Neurological Dysfunctions in Aphakia Mice, a Model of Parkinson’s Disease, after Transplantation of ES Cell-Derived Dopaminergic Neuronal Precursors

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Sangmi; Moon, Jisook; Kim, Kwang-Soo

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) is characterized by selective death of the substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons, and previously we have shown that aphakia mice, which harbor spontaneous Pitx3 gene mutation, show specific degeneration of the substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons accompanied by behavioral deficits that is reversed by L-DOPA treatment or transplantation of dopaminergic neural precursors. Here, we describe transplantation of dopaminergic neural precursors to a mouse model of PD, an aphakia mouse, followed by behavioral analyses of transplanted mice. PMID:25173391

  8. Dopaminergic neurons write and update memories with cell-type-specific rules.

    PubMed

    Aso, Yoshinori; Rubin, Gerald M

    2016-01-01

    Associative learning is thought to involve parallel and distributed mechanisms of memory formation and storage. In Drosophila, the mushroom body (MB) is the major site of associative odor memory formation. Previously we described the anatomy of the adult MB and defined 20 types of dopaminergic neurons (DANs) that each innervate distinct MB compartments (Aso et al., 2014a, 2014b). Here we compare the properties of memories formed by optogenetic activation of individual DAN cell types. We found extensive differences in training requirements for memory formation, decay dynamics, storage capacity and flexibility to learn new associations. Even a single DAN cell type can either write or reduce an aversive memory, or write an appetitive memory, depending on when it is activated relative to odor delivery. Our results show that different learning rules are executed in seemingly parallel memory systems, providing multiple distinct circuit-based strategies to predict future events from past experiences. PMID:27441388

  9. Mixed-mode oscillations in a three time-scale model for the dopaminergic neuron

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krupa, Martin; Popović, Nikola; Kopell, Nancy; Rotstein, Horacio G.

    2008-03-01

    Mixed-mode dynamics is a complex type of dynamical behavior that has been observed both numerically and experimentally in numerous prototypical systems in the natural sciences. The compartmental Wilson-Callaway model for the dopaminergic neuron is an example of a system that exhibits a wide variety of mixed-mode patterns upon variation of a control parameter. One characteristic feature of this system is the presence of multiple time scales. In this article, we study the Wilson-Callaway model from a geometric point of view. We show that the observed mixed-mode dynamics is caused by a slowly varying canard structure. By appropriately transforming the model equations, we reduce them to an underlying three-dimensional canonical form that can be analyzed via a slight adaptation of the approach developed by M. Krupa, N. Popović, and N. Kopell (unpublished).

  10. Glucose Levels in Culture Medium Determine Cell Death Mode in MPP+-treated Dopaminergic Neuronal Cells

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, So-Young

    2015-01-01

    We previously demonstrated that 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) causes caspase-independent, non-apoptotic death of dopaminergic (DA) neuronal cells. Here, we specifically examined whether change of glucose concentration in culture medium may play a role for determining cell death modes of DA neurons following MPP+ treatment. By incubating MN9D cells in medium containing varying concentrations of glucose (5~35 mM), we found that cells underwent a distinct cell death as determined by morphological and biochemical criteria. At 5~10 mM glucose concentration (low glucose levels), MPP+ induced typical of the apoptotic dell death accompanied with caspase activation and DNA fragmentation as well as cell shrinkage. In contrast, MN9D cells cultivated in medium containing more than 17.5 mM (high glucose levels) did not demonstrate any of these changes. Subsequently, we observed that MPP+ at low glucose levels but not high glucose levels led to ROS generation and subsequent JNK activation. Therefore, MPP+-induced cell death only at low glucose levels was significantly ameliorated following co-treatment with ROS scavenger, caspase inhibitor or JNK inhibitor. We basically confirmed the quite similar pattern of cell death in primary cultures of DA neurons. Taken together, our results suggest that a biochemically distinct cell death mode is recruited by MPP+ depending on extracellular glucose levels. PMID:26412968

  11. Induction of a dopaminergic phenotype in cultured striatal neurons by bone morphogenetic proteins.

    PubMed

    Stull, N D; Jung, J W; Iacovitti, L

    2001-09-23

    In the present study, we examined whether the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs), which are important in the developmental specification of transmitter type in certain classes of neurons, might also play a role in signaling the differentiation of a dopaminergic (DA) phenotype. We found that BMP-2, -4 and -6 were each capable of inducing, in a dose and time dependent manner, moderate levels of the DA enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in cultured neurons from the mouse embryonic striatum. In contradistinction to other TH-inducing agents, BMPs initiated de novo TH expression without the required synergy of exogenous growth factors or co-activating substances and in neurons presumably aged (E16) beyond the critical period for induction. However, the appearance of TH in induced cells was short-lived (24 h) and could not be prolonged by repeated supplementation with the BMPs. Inhibitors of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK/ERK) signaling pathway, PD98059 and apigenin, did not prevent TH induction by BMP-4, as they did other TH inducing agents, indicating that the MAPK/ERK pathway does not mediate BMPs effects on TH expression. We conclude that BMP-2, -4 and -6 can be added to the expanding inventory of agents capable of inducing TH, making them potentially important in the specification of a DA phenotype in stem/precursor cells for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. PMID:11557097

  12. PINK1 positively regulates HDAC3 to suppress dopaminergic neuronal cell death.

    PubMed

    Choi, Hyo-Kyoung; Choi, Youngsok; Kang, HeeBum; Lim, Eun-Jin; Park, Soo-Yeon; Lee, Hyun-Seob; Park, Ji-Min; Moon, Jisook; Kim, Yoon-Jung; Choi, Insup; Joe, Eun-Hye; Choi, Kyung-Chul; Yoon, Ho-Geun

    2015-02-15

    Deciphering the molecular basis of neuronal cell death is a central issue in the etiology of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. Dysregulation of p53 levels has been implicated in neuronal apoptosis. The role of histone deacetylase 3 (HDAC3) in suppressing p53-dependent apoptosis has been recently emphasized; however, the molecular basis of modulation of p53 function by HDAC3 remains unclear. Here we show that PTEN-induced putative kinase 1 (PINK1), which is linked to autosomal recessive early-onset familial Parkinson's disease, phosphorylates HDAC3 at Ser-424 to enhance its HDAC activity in a neural cell-specific manner. PINK1 prevents H2O2-induced C-terminal cleavage of HDAC3 via phosphorylation of HDAC3 at Ser-424, which is reversed by protein phosphatase 4c. PINK1-mediated phosphorylation of HDAC3 enhances its direct association with p53 and causes subsequent hypoacetylation of p53. Genetic deletion of PINK1 partly impaired the suppressive role of HDAC3 in regulating p53 acetylation and transcriptional activity. However, depletion of HDAC3 fully abolished the PINK1-mediated p53 inhibitory loop. Finally, ectopic expression of phosphomometic-HDAC3(S424E) substantially overcomes the defective action of PINK1 against oxidative stress in dopaminergic neuronal cells. Together, our results uncovered a mechanism by which PINK1-HDAC3 network mediates p53 inhibitory loop in response to oxidative stress-induced damage. PMID:25305081

  13. Dopaminergic modulation of motor neuron activity and neuromuscular function in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Cooper, R L; Neckameyer, W S

    1999-02-01

    Dopamine is found in both neuronal and non-neuronal tissues in the larval stage of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, and functions as a signaling molecule in the nervous system. Although dopaminergic neurons in the central nervous system (CNS) were previously thought solely to be interneurons, recent studies suggest that dopamine may also act as a neuromodulator in humoral pathways. We examined both application of dopamine on intact larval CNS-segmental preparations and isolated neuromuscular junctions (NMJs). Dopamine rapidly decreased the rhythmicity of the CNS motor activity. Application of dopamine on neuromuscular preparations of the segmental muscles 6 and 7 resulted in a dose-responsive decrease in the excitatory junction potentials (EJPs). With the use of focal, macro-patch synaptic current recordings the quantal evoked transmission showed a depression of vesicular release at concentrations of 10 microM. Higher concentrations (1 mM) produced a rapid decrement in evoked vesicular release. Dopamine did not alter the shape of the spontaneous synaptic currents, suggesting that dopamine does not alter the postsynaptic muscle fiber receptiveness to the glutaminergic motor nerve transmission. The effects are presynaptic in causing a reduction in the number of vesicles that are stimulated to be released due to neural activity. PMID:10327610

  14. Protein Kinase D1 (PKD1) Phosphorylation Promotes Dopaminergic Neuronal Survival during 6-OHDA-Induced Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Asaithambi, Arunkumar; Ay, Muhammet; Jin, Huajun; Gosh, Anamitra; Anantharam, Vellareddy; Kanthasamy, Arthi; Kanthasamy, Anumantha G.

    2014-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a major pathophysiological mediator of degenerative processes in many neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson’s disease (PD). Aberrant cell signaling governed by protein phosphorylation has been linked to oxidative damage of dopaminergic neurons in PD. Although several studies have associated activation of certain protein kinases with apoptotic cell death in PD, very little is known about protein kinase regulation of cell survival and protection against oxidative damage and degeneration in dopaminergic neurons. Here, we characterized the PKD1-mediated protective pathway against oxidative damage in cell culture models of PD. Dopaminergic neurotoxicant 6-hydroxy dopamine (6-OHDA) was used to induce oxidative stress in the N27 dopaminergic cell model and in primary mesencephalic neurons. Our results indicated that 6-OHDA induced the PKD1 activation loop (PKD1S744/S748) phosphorylation during early stages of oxidative stress and that PKD1 activation preceded cell death. We also found that 6-OHDA rapidly increased phosphorylation of the C-terminal S916 in PKD1, which is required for PKD1 activation loop (PKD1S744/748) phosphorylation. Interestingly, negative modulation of PKD1 activation by RNAi knockdown or by the pharmacological inhibition of PKD1 by kbNB-14270 augmented 6-OHDA-induced apoptosis, while positive modulation of PKD1 by the overexpression of full length PKD1 (PKD1WT) or constitutively active PKD1 (PKD1S744E/S748E) attenuated 6-OHDA-induced apoptosis, suggesting an anti-apoptotic role for PKD1 during oxidative neuronal injury. Collectively, our results demonstrate that PKD1 signaling plays a cell survival role during early stages of oxidative stress in dopaminergic neurons and therefore, positive modulation of the PKD1-mediated signal transduction pathway can provide a novel neuroprotective strategy against PD. PMID:24806360

  15. Multitarget intervention of Fasudil in the neuroprotection of dopaminergic neurons in MPTP-mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yong-fei; Zhang, Qiong; Xi, Jian-ying; Li, Yan-hua; Ma, Cun-gen; Xiao, Bao-guo

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that activation of the Rho-associated kinase (ROCK) pathway participates in the dopaminergic neuron degeneration and possibly in Parkinson's disease (PD). In the current study, we tried to observe the therapeutic potential of ROCK inhibitor Fasudil against dopaminergic neuron injury in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-mouse model of PD, and explore possible molecular mechanisms by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), western blot and immunofluorescent assays. The results showed that MPTP-PD mice presented motor deficits, dopaminergic neuron loss, activation of inflammatory response and oxidative stress as well as ROCK and glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β) signaling pathways. The administration of Fasudil exhibited neuroprotective effects against the dopaminergic neurons and improved the motor function recovery in the MPTP-PD mice, accompanied by the suppression of inflammatory responses (IL-1β, TNF-α, NF-κB-p65 and TLR-2), and oxidative stress (iNOS and gp91Phox), which might be associated with the inhibition of ROCK and GSK-3β activity. Simultaneously, the administration of Fasudil resulted in the shift from inflammatory M1 to anti-inflammatory/neurorepair M2 microglia. Additionally, Fasudil intervention enhanced the expression of anti-oxidative factors such as NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), Hmox as well as neurotrophic factor including GDNF. Our observations defined the neuroprotective effects of Fasudil in MPTP-PD mice, and we found a series of novel effector molecules and pathways for explaining the neuroprotective effects against dopaminergic neurons. However, a lot of investigations are warranted to further elucidate the crosstalk among Fasudil, oxidative stress, inflammatory response, GDNF and ROCK/NF-kB/Nrf2 pathways in the therapeutic potential of PD. PMID:25908255

  16. Engrailed 1 shapes the dopaminergic and serotonergic landscape through proper isthmic organizer maintenance and function.

    PubMed

    Kouwenhoven, Willemieke M; Veenvliet, Jesse V; van Hooft, Johannes A; van der Heide, L P; Smidt, Marten P

    2016-01-01

    The isthmic organizer (IsO) is a signaling center that specifies the correct and distinct embryonic development of the dopaminergic midbrain and serotonergic hindbrain. The IsO is a linear boundary between the two brain regions, emerging at around embryonic day 7-8 of murine embryonic development, that shapes its surroundings through the expression of instructive signals such as Wnt and growth factors. Homeobox transcription factor engrailed 1 (En1) is present in midbrain and rostral hindbrain (i.e. rhombomere 1, R1). Its expression spans the IsO, and it is known to be an important survival factor for both dopaminergic and serotonergic neurons. Erroneous composition of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain or serotonergic neurons in the hindbrain is associated with severe pathologies such as Parkinson's disease, depression or autism. Here we investigated the role of En1 in early mid-hindbrain development, using multiple En1-ablated mouse models as well as lineage-tracing techniques, and observed the appearance of ectopic dopaminergic neurons, indistinguishable from midbrain dopaminergic neurons based on molecular profile and intrinsic electrophysiological properties. We propose that this change is the direct result of a caudal relocation of the IsO as represented by ectopic presence of Fgf8, Otx2, Wnt1 and canonical Wnt-signalling. Our work suggests a newly-discovered role for En1: the repression of Otx2, Wnt1 and canonical Wnt-signaling in R1. Overall, our results suggest that En1 is essential for proper IsO maintenance and function. PMID:26879466

  17. Engrailed 1 shapes the dopaminergic and serotonergic landscape through proper isthmic organizer maintenance and function

    PubMed Central

    Kouwenhoven, Willemieke M.; Veenvliet, Jesse V.; van Hooft, Johannes A.; van der Heide, L. P.; Smidt, Marten P.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The isthmic organizer (IsO) is a signaling center that specifies the correct and distinct embryonic development of the dopaminergic midbrain and serotonergic hindbrain. The IsO is a linear boundary between the two brain regions, emerging at around embryonic day 7-8 of murine embryonic development, that shapes its surroundings through the expression of instructive signals such as Wnt and growth factors. Homeobox transcription factor engrailed 1 (En1) is present in midbrain and rostral hindbrain (i.e. rhombomere 1, R1). Its expression spans the IsO, and it is known to be an important survival factor for both dopaminergic and serotonergic neurons. Erroneous composition of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain or serotonergic neurons in the hindbrain is associated with severe pathologies such as Parkinson's disease, depression or autism. Here we investigated the role of En1 in early mid-hindbrain development, using multiple En1-ablated mouse models as well as lineage-tracing techniques, and observed the appearance of ectopic dopaminergic neurons, indistinguishable from midbrain dopaminergic neurons based on molecular profile and intrinsic electrophysiological properties. We propose that this change is the direct result of a caudal relocation of the IsO as represented by ectopic presence of Fgf8, Otx2, Wnt1 and canonical Wnt-signalling. Our work suggests a newly-discovered role for En1: the repression of Otx2, Wnt1 and canonical Wnt-signaling in R1. Overall, our results suggest that En1 is essential for proper IsO maintenance and function. PMID:26879466

  18. Involvement of the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway and nitric oxide synthase in dopaminergic neuronal death induced by 6-hydroxydopamine and lipopolysaccharide.

    PubMed

    Singh, Sarika; Kumar, Sachin; Dikshit, Madhu

    2010-01-01

    The primary pathology in Parkinson's disease patients is significant loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra through multiple mechanisms. We previously have demonstrated the involvement of nitric oxide (NO) in the dopaminergic neurodegeneration induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in rats. The present study was undertaken to investigate further the role of NO in the mitochondria-mediated apoptosis of dopaminergic neurons during the early time period after administration of 6-OHDA and LPS. Measurement of dopamine and its metabolites, TH immunolabeling, cytochrome-c release, mitochondrial complex-I and caspase-3 activity assessment was performed in both the 6-OHDA- and LPS-induced experimental models of Parkinson's disease. Significant decreases in dopamine, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC), homovanillic acid (HVA), tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunolabeling and mitochondrial complex-I activity were observed, with increase in cytochrome-c release and caspase-3 activation. Dopmaine and its metabolite levels, mitochondrial complex-I activity and caspase-3 activity were significantly reversed with treatment of the NOS inhibitor, L-NAME. The reduction in the extent of cytochrome-c release responded variably to NOS inhibition in both the models. The results obtained suggest that NO contributes to mitochondria-mediated neuronal apoptosis in the dopaminergic neurodegeneration induced by 6-OHDA and LPS in rats. PMID:20594414

  19. Orexins contribute to restraint stress-induced cocaine relapse by endocannabinoid-mediated disinhibition of dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Tung, Li-Wei; Lu, Guan-Ling; Lee, Yen-Hsien; Yu, Lung; Lee, Hsin-Jung; Leishman, Emma; Bradshaw, Heather; Hwang, Ling-Ling; Hung, Ming-Shiu; Mackie, Ken; Zimmer, Andreas; Chiou, Lih-Chu

    2016-01-01

    Orexins are associated with drug relapse in rodents. Here, we show that acute restraint stress in mice activates lateral hypothalamic (LH) orexin neurons, increases levels of orexin A and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), and reinstates extinguished cocaine-conditioned place preference (CPP). This stress-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP depends on type 1 orexin receptors (OX1Rs), type 1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1Rs) and diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL) in the VTA. In dopaminergic neurons of VTA slices, orexin A presynaptically inhibits GABAergic transmission. This effect is prevented by internal GDP-β-S or inhibiting OX1Rs, CB1Rs, phospholipase C or DAGL, and potentiated by inhibiting 2-AG degradation. These results suggest that restraint stress activates LH orexin neurons, releasing orexins into the VTA to activate postsynaptic OX1Rs of dopaminergic neurons and generate 2-AG through a Gq-protein-phospholipase C-DAGL cascade. 2-AG retrogradely inhibits GABA release through presynaptic CB1Rs, leading to VTA dopaminergic disinhibition and reinstatement of cocaine CPP. PMID:27448020

  20. Orexins contribute to restraint stress-induced cocaine relapse by endocannabinoid-mediated disinhibition of dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Tung, Li-Wei; Lu, Guan-Ling; Lee, Yen-Hsien; Yu, Lung; Lee, Hsin-Jung; Leishman, Emma; Bradshaw, Heather; Hwang, Ling-Ling; Hung, Ming-Shiu; Mackie, Ken; Zimmer, Andreas; Chiou, Lih-Chu

    2016-01-01

    Orexins are associated with drug relapse in rodents. Here, we show that acute restraint stress in mice activates lateral hypothalamic (LH) orexin neurons, increases levels of orexin A and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), and reinstates extinguished cocaine-conditioned place preference (CPP). This stress-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP depends on type 1 orexin receptors (OX1Rs), type 1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1Rs) and diacylglycerol lipase (DAGL) in the VTA. In dopaminergic neurons of VTA slices, orexin A presynaptically inhibits GABAergic transmission. This effect is prevented by internal GDP-β-S or inhibiting OX1Rs, CB1Rs, phospholipase C or DAGL, and potentiated by inhibiting 2-AG degradation. These results suggest that restraint stress activates LH orexin neurons, releasing orexins into the VTA to activate postsynaptic OX1Rs of dopaminergic neurons and generate 2-AG through a Gq-protein-phospholipase C-DAGL cascade. 2-AG retrogradely inhibits GABA release through presynaptic CB1Rs, leading to VTA dopaminergic disinhibition and reinstatement of cocaine CPP. PMID:27448020

  1. Hypothalamic Dopaminergic Neurons in an Animal Model of Seasonal Affective Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Deats, Sean P.; Adidharma, Widya; Yan, Lily

    2015-01-01

    Light has profound effects on mood regulation as exemplified in Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and the therapeutic benefits of light therapy. However, the underlying neural pathways through which light regulates mood are not well understood. Our previous work has developed the diurnal grass rat, Arvicanthis niloticus, as an animal model of SAD. Following housing conditions of either 12:12hr Dim Light:Dark (DLD) or 8:16hr Short Photoperiod (SP), which mimic the lower light intensity or short day-length of winter, respectively, grass rats exhibit an increase in depression-like behavior compared to those housed in a 12:12hr Bright Light:Dark (BLD) condition. Furthermore, we revealed that the orexinergic system is involved in mediating the effects of light on mood and anxiety. To explore other potential neural substrates involved in the depressive phenotype, the present study examined hypothalamic dopaminergic (DA) and somatostatin (SST) neurons in the brains of grass rats housed in DLD, SP and BLD. Using immunostaining for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and SST, we found that the number of TH- and SST-ir cells in the hypothalamus was significantly lower in the DLD and SP groups compared to the BLD group. We also found that treating BLD animals with a selective orexin receptor 1 (OX1R) antagonist SB-334867 significantly reduced the number of hypothalamic TH-ir cells. The present study suggests that the hypothalamic DA neurons are sensitive to daytime light deficiency and are regulated by an orexinergic pathway. The results support the hypothesis that the orexinergic pathways mediate the effects of light on other neuronal systems that collectively contribute to light-dependent changes in the affective state. PMID:26116821

  2. Transfer of host-derived α synuclein to grafted dopaminergic neurons in rat.

    PubMed

    Kordower, Jeffrey H; Dodiya, Hemraj B; Kordower, Adam M; Terpstra, Brian; Paumier, Katrina; Madhavan, Lalitha; Sortwell, Caryl; Steece-Collier, Kathy; Collier, Timothy J

    2011-09-01

    Multiple laboratories have recently demonstrated that long-term dopaminergic transplants form Lewy bodies in patients with Parkinson's disease. Debate has arisen as to whether these Lewy bodies form from the transfer of α synuclein from the host to the graft or whether they form from intrinsic responses of the graft from being placed into what was, or became, an inflammatory focus. To test whether the former hypothesis was possible, we grafted fetal rat ventral mesencephalon into the dopamine depleted striatum of rats that had previously received 6-hydroxydopamine lesions. One month after the transplant, rats received viral over expression of human α synuclein (AAV2/6-α synuclein) or green fluorescent protein (AAV2/6-GFP) into the striatum rostral to the grafts. Care was taken to make sure that the AAV injections were sufficiently distal to the graft so no cells would be directly transfected. All rats were sacrificed five weeks after the virus injections. Double label immunohistochemistry combined with confocal microscopy revealed that a small number of grafted tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) neurons (5.7% ± 1.5% (mean ± SEM) of grafted dopamine cells) expressed host derived α synuclein but none of the grafted cells expressed host-derived GFP. The α synuclein in a few of these cells was misfolded and failed to be digested with proteinase K. These data indicate that it is possible for host derived α synuclein to transfer to grafted neurons supporting the concept that this is one possible mechanism by which grafted dopamine neurons form Lewy bodies in Parkinson's disease patients. PMID:21600984

  3. Inward rectifier potassium (Kir) current in dopaminergic periglomerular neurons of the mouse olfactory bulb

    PubMed Central

    Borin, Mirta; Fogli Iseppe, Alex; Pignatelli, Angela; Belluzzi, Ottorino

    2014-01-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) periglomerular (PG) neurons are critically placed at the entry of the bulbar circuitry, directly in contact with both the terminals of olfactory sensory neurons and the apical dendrites of projection neurons; they are autorhythmic and are the target of numerous terminals releasing a variety of neurotransmitters. Despite the centrality of their position, suggesting a critical role in the sensory processing, their properties -and consequently their function- remain elusive. The current mediated by inward rectifier potassium (Kir) channels in DA-PG cells was recorded by adopting the perforated-patch configuration in thin slices; IKir could be distinguished from the hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih) by showing full activation in <10 ms, no inactivation, suppression by Ba2+ in a typical voltage-dependent manner (IC50 208 μM) and reversal potential nearly coincident with EK. Ba2+ (2 mM) induces a large depolarization of DA-PG cells, paralleled by an increase of the input resistance, leading to a block of the spontaneous activity, but the Kir current is not an essential component of the pacemaker machinery. The Kir current is negatively modulated by intracellular cAMP, as shown by a decrease of its amplitude induced by forskolin or 8Br-cAMP. We have also tested the neuromodulatory effects of the activation of several metabotropic receptors known to be present on these cells, showing that the current can be modulated by a multiplicity of pathways, whose activation in some case increases the amplitude of the current, as can be observed with agonists of D2, muscarinic, and GABAA receptors, whereas in other cases has the opposite effect, as it can be observed with agonists of α1 noradrenergic, 5-HT and histamine receptors. These characteristics of the Kir currents provide the basis for an unexpected plasticity of DA-PG cell function, making them potentially capable to reconfigure the bulbar network to allow a better flexibility. PMID:25152712

  4. Dopaminergic neuron-specific deletion of p53 gene is neuroprotective in an experimental Parkinson's disease model.

    PubMed

    Qi, Xin; Davis, Brandon; Chiang, Yung-Hsiao; Filichia, Emily; Barnett, Austin; Greig, Nigel H; Hoffer, Barry; Luo, Yu

    2016-09-01

    p53, a stress response gene, is involved in diverse cell death pathways and its activation has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). However, whether the neuronal p53 protein plays a direct role in regulating dopaminergic (DA) neuronal cell death is unknown. In this study, in contrast to the global inhibition of p53 function by pharmacological inhibitors and in traditional p53 knock-out (KO) mice, we examined the effect of DA specific p53 gene deletion in DAT-p53KO mice. These DAT-p53KO mice did not exhibit apparent changes in the general structure and neuronal density of DA neurons during late development and in aging. However, in DA-p53KO mice treated with the neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), we found that the induction of Bax and p53 up-regulated modulator of apoptosis (PUMA) mRNA and protein levels by MPTP were diminished in both striatum and substantia nigra of these mice. Notably, deletion of the p53 gene in DA neurons significantly reduced dopaminergic neuronal loss in substantia nigra, dopaminergic neuronal terminal loss at striatum and, additionally, decreased motor deficits in mice challenged with MPTP. In contrast, there was no difference in astrogliosis between WT and DAT-p53KO mice in response to MPTP treatment. These findings demonstrate a specific contribution of p53 activation in DA neuronal cell death by MPTP challenge. Our results further support the role of programmed cell death mediated by p53 in this animal model of PD and identify Bax, BAD and PUMA genes as downstream targets of p53 in modulating DA neuronal death in the in vivo MPTP-induced PD model. We deleted p53 gene in dopaminergic neurons in late developmental stages and found that DA specific p53 deletion is protective in acute MPTP animal model possibly through blocking MPTP-induced BAX and PUMA up-regulation. Astrocyte activation measured by GFAP positive cells and GFAP gene up-regulation in the striatum shows no difference

  5. Docosahexaenoic acid prevents paraquat-induced reactive oxygen species production in dopaminergic neurons via enhancement of glutathione homeostasis

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Hyoung Jun; Han, Jeongsu; Jang, Yunseon; Kim, Soo Jeong; Park, Ji Hoon; Seo, Kang Sik; Jeong, Soyeon; Shin, Soyeon; Lim, Kyu; Heo, Jun Young; Kweon, Gi Ryang

    2015-01-30

    Highlights: • DHA prevents PQ-induced dopaminergic neuronal loss via decreasing of excessive ROS. • DHA increases GR and GCLm derivate GSH pool by enhancement of Nrf2 expression. • Protective mechanism is removal of PQ-induced ROS via DHA-dependent GSH pool. • DHA may be a good preventive strategy for Parkinson’s disease (PD) therapy. - Abstract: Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid levels are reduced in the substantia nigra area in Parkinson’s disease patients and animal models, implicating docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) as a potential treatment for preventing Parkinson’s disease and suggesting the need for investigations into how DHA might protect against neurotoxin-induced dopaminergic neuron loss. The herbicide paraquat (PQ) induces dopaminergic neuron loss through the excessive production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). We found that treatment of dopaminergic SN4741 cells with PQ reduced cell viability in a dose-dependent manner, but pretreatment with DHA ameliorated the toxic effect of PQ. To determine the toxic mechanism of PQ, we measured intracellular ROS content in different organelles with specific dyes. As expected, all types of ROS were increased by PQ treatment, but DHA pretreatment selectively decreased cytosolic hydrogen peroxide content. Furthermore, DHA treatment-induced increases in glutathione reductase and glutamate cysteine ligase modifier subunit (GCLm) mRNA expression were positively correlated with glutathione (GSH) content. Consistent with this increase in GCLm mRNA levels, Western blot analysis revealed that DHA pretreatment increased nuclear factor-erythroid 2 related factor 2 (Nrf2) protein levels. These findings indicate that DHA prevents PQ-induced neuronal cell loss by enhancing Nrf2-regulated GSH homeostasis.

  6. Dual role for Drosophila lethal of scute in CNS midline precursor formation and dopaminergic neuron and motoneuron cell fate.

    PubMed

    Stagg, Stephanie B; Guardiola, Amaris R; Crews, Stephen T

    2011-06-01

    Dopaminergic neurons play important behavioral roles in locomotion, reward and aggression. The Drosophila H-cell is a dopaminergic neuron that resides at the midline of the ventral nerve cord. Both the H-cell and the glutamatergic H-cell sib are the asymmetric progeny of the MP3 midline precursor cell. H-cell sib cell fate is dependent on Notch signaling, whereas H-cell fate is Notch independent. Genetic analysis of genes that could potentially regulate H-cell fate revealed that the lethal of scute [l(1)sc], tailup and SoxNeuro transcription factor genes act together to control H-cell gene expression. The l(1)sc bHLH gene is required for all H-cell-specific gene transcription, whereas tailup acts in parallel to l(1)sc and controls genes involved in dopamine metabolism. SoxNeuro functions downstream of l(1)sc and controls expression of a peptide neurotransmitter receptor gene. The role of l(1)sc may be more widespread, as a l(1)sc mutant shows reductions in gene expression in non-midline dopaminergic neurons. In addition, l(1)sc mutant embryos possess defects in the formation of MP4-6 midline precursor and the median neuroblast stem cell, revealing a proneural role for l(1)sc in midline cells. The Notch-dependent progeny of MP4-6 are the mVUM motoneurons, and these cells also require l(1)sc for mVUM-specific gene expression. Thus, l(1)sc plays an important regulatory role in both neurogenesis and specifying dopaminergic neuron and motoneuron identities. PMID:21558367

  7. Abnormal differentiation of dopaminergic neurons in zebrafish trpm7 mutant larvae impairs development of the motor pattern

    PubMed Central

    Decker, Amanda R.; McNeill, Matthew S.; Lambert, Aaron M.; Overton, Jeffrey D.; Chen, Yu-Chia; Lorca, Ramón A.; Johnson, Nicolas A.; Brockerhoff, Susan E.; Mohapatra, Durga P.; MacArthur, Heather; Panula, Pertti; Masino, Mark A.; Runnels, Loren W.; Cornell, Robert A.

    2014-01-01

    Transient receptor potential, melastatin-like 7 (Trpm7) is a combined ion channel and kinase implicated in the differentiation or function of many cell types. Early lethality in mice and frogs depleted of the corresponding gene impedes investigation of the functions of this protein particularly during later stages of development. By contrast, zebrafish trpm7 mutant larvae undergo early morphogenesis normally and thus do not have this limitation. The mutant larvae are characterized by multiple defects including melanocyte cell death, transient paralysis, and an ion imbalance that leads to the development of kidney stones. Here we report a requirement for Trpm7 in differentiation or function of dopaminergic neurons in vivo. First, trpm7 mutant larvae are hypomotile and fail to make a dopamine-dependent developmental transition in swim-bout length. Both of these deficits are partially rescued by the application of levodopa or dopamine. Second, histological analysis reveals that in trpm7 mutants a significant fraction of dopaminergic neurons lack expression of tyrosine hydroxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis. Third, trpm7 mutants are unusually sensitive to the neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium, an oxidative stressor, and their motility is partially rescued by application of the iron chelator deferoxamine, an anti-oxidant. Finally, in SH-SY5Y cells, which model aspects of human dopaminergic neurons, forced expression of a channel-dead variant of TRPM7 causes cell death. In summary, a forward genetic screen in zebrafish has revealed that both melanocytes and dopaminergic neurons depend on the ion channel Trpm7. The mechanistic underpinning of this dependence requires further investigation. PMID:24291744

  8. Lanosterol induces mitochondrial uncoupling and protects dopaminergic neurons from cell death in a model for Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Lim, L; Jackson-Lewis, V; Wong, L C; Shui, G H; Goh, A X H; Kesavapany, S; Jenner, A M; Fivaz, M; Przedborski, S; Wenk, M R

    2012-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder marked by the selective degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the nigrostriatal pathway. Several lines of evidence indicate that mitochondrial dysfunction contributes to its etiology. Other studies have suggested that alterations in sterol homeostasis correlate with increased risk for PD. Whether these observations are functionally related is, however, unknown. In this study, we used a toxin-induced mouse model of PD and measured levels of nine sterol intermediates. We found that lanosterol is significantly (∼50%) and specifically reduced in the nigrostriatal regions of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated mice, indicative of altered lanosterol metabolism during PD pathogenesis. Remarkably, exogenous addition of lanosterol rescued dopaminergic neurons from 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+)-induced cell death in culture. Furthermore, we observed a marked redistribution of lanosterol synthase from the endoplasmic reticulum to mitochondria in dopaminergic neurons exposed to MPP+, suggesting that lanosterol might exert its survival effect by regulating mitochondrial function. Consistent with this model, we find that lanosterol induces mild depolarization of mitochondria and promotes autophagy. Collectively, our results highlight a novel sterol-based neuroprotective mechanism with direct relevance to PD. PMID:21818119

  9. Docosahexaenoic acid prevents paraquat-induced reactive oxygen species production in dopaminergic neurons via enhancement of glutathione homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyoung Jun; Han, Jeongsu; Jang, Yunseon; Kim, Soo Jeong; Park, Ji Hoon; Seo, Kang Sik; Jeong, Soyeon; Shin, Soyeon; Lim, Kyu; Heo, Jun Young; Kweon, Gi Ryang

    2015-01-30

    Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid levels are reduced in the substantia nigra area in Parkinson's disease patients and animal models, implicating docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) as a potential treatment for preventing Parkinson's disease and suggesting the need for investigations into how DHA might protect against neurotoxin-induced dopaminergic neuron loss. The herbicide paraquat (PQ) induces dopaminergic neuron loss through the excessive production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). We found that treatment of dopaminergic SN4741 cells with PQ reduced cell viability in a dose-dependent manner, but pretreatment with DHA ameliorated the toxic effect of PQ. To determine the toxic mechanism of PQ, we measured intracellular ROS content in different organelles with specific dyes. As expected, all types of ROS were increased by PQ treatment, but DHA pretreatment selectively decreased cytosolic hydrogen peroxide content. Furthermore, DHA treatment-induced increases in glutathione reductase and glutamate cysteine ligase modifier subunit (GCLm) mRNA expression were positively correlated with glutathione (GSH) content. Consistent with this increase in GCLm mRNA levels, Western blot analysis revealed that DHA pretreatment increased nuclear factor-erythroid 2 related factor 2 (Nrf2) protein levels. These findings indicate that DHA prevents PQ-induced neuronal cell loss by enhancing Nrf2-regulated GSH homeostasis. PMID:25545062

  10. S6K Promotes Dopaminergic Neuronal Differentiation Through PI3K/Akt/mTOR-Dependent Signaling Pathways in Human Neural Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jeong Eun; Lim, Mi Sun; Park, Jae Hyun; Park, Chang Hwan; Koh, Hyun Chul

    2016-08-01

    It has recently been reported that the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway regulates neuronal differentiation of neural stem cells (NSCs) derived from rats or mice and is essential for the self-renewal of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). However, the roles of PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathways during proliferation and dopaminergic neuronal differentiation of human neural stem cells (hNSCs) are poorly understood. In this study, we examined the effect of regulation of these intracellular signaling pathways in hNSCs on the potential to maintain proliferation and induce dopaminergic neuronal differentiation. Dopaminergic neuronal differentiation depended on the concentration of insulin in our culture system. Inhibition of PI3K/Akt with LY294002 reduced proliferation and inhibited dopaminergic neuronal differentiation of these cells. We also found that rapamycin, a specific inhibitor of mTOR, significantly reduced neuronal differentiation without affecting proliferation. Inhibition of the Akt/mTOR signaling pathway led to inhibition of p70 ribosomal S6 kinase (S6K) signaling, which reduced dopaminergic neuronal differentiation in hNSCs. Inhibition of S6K by a specific chemical inhibitor, PF-4708671 inhibited dopaminergic neuronal differentiation of hNSCs. As expected, transduction with a dominant negative S6K1 (S6K1-DN) construct impaired dopaminergic neuronal differentiation of hNSCs. Conversely, overexpression of constitutively active S6K1 (S6K1-CA) promoted dopaminergic neuronal differentiation of these cells. In a survival study, 4 weeks after transplantation, no or very few donor cells were viable in striata grafted with S6K1-DN-transduced hNSCs. In contrast, S6K1-CA-transduced hNSCs survived, integrated into striata to generate tubular masses of grafts and differentiated toward TH-positive cells. Taken together, these data demonstrated that insulin promotes dopaminergic neuronal differentiation through a PI

  11. An Efficient and Versatile System for Visualization and Genetic Modification of Dopaminergic Neurons in Transgenic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Kramer, Edgar R.

    2015-01-01

    Background & Aims The brain dopaminergic (DA) system is involved in fine tuning many behaviors and several human diseases are associated with pathological alterations of the DA system such as Parkinson’s disease (PD) and drug addiction. Because of its complex network integration, detailed analyses of physiological and pathophysiological conditions are only possible in a whole organism with a sophisticated tool box for visualization and functional modification. Methods & Results Here, we have generated transgenic mice expressing the tetracycline-regulated transactivator (tTA) or the reverse tetracycline-regulated transactivator (rtTA) under control of the tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) promoter, TH-tTA (tet-OFF) and TH-rtTA (tet-ON) mice, to visualize and genetically modify DA neurons. We show their tight regulation and efficient use to overexpress proteins under the control of tet-responsive elements or to delete genes of interest with tet-responsive Cre. In combination with mice encoding tet-responsive luciferase, we visualized the DA system in living mice progressively over time. Conclusion These experiments establish TH-tTA and TH-rtTA mice as a powerful tool to generate and monitor mouse models for DA system diseases. PMID:26291828

  12. Dopaminergic neurons write and update memories with cell-type-specific rules

    PubMed Central

    Aso, Yoshinori; Rubin, Gerald M

    2016-01-01

    Associative learning is thought to involve parallel and distributed mechanisms of memory formation and storage. In Drosophila, the mushroom body (MB) is the major site of associative odor memory formation. Previously we described the anatomy of the adult MB and defined 20 types of dopaminergic neurons (DANs) that each innervate distinct MB compartments (Aso et al., 2014a, 2014b). Here we compare the properties of memories formed by optogenetic activation of individual DAN cell types. We found extensive differences in training requirements for memory formation, decay dynamics, storage capacity and flexibility to learn new associations. Even a single DAN cell type can either write or reduce an aversive memory, or write an appetitive memory, depending on when it is activated relative to odor delivery. Our results show that different learning rules are executed in seemingly parallel memory systems, providing multiple distinct circuit-based strategies to predict future events from past experiences. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16135.001 PMID:27441388

  13. Circadian Modulation of Dopamine Levels and Dopaminergic Neuron Development Contributes to Attention Deficiency and Hyperactive Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jian; Zhong, Zhaomin; Wang, Mingyong; Chen, Xifeng; Tan, Yicheng; Zhang, Shuqing; He, Wei; He, Xiong; Huang, Guodong; Lu, Haiping; Wu, Ping; Che, Yi; Yan, Yi-Lin; Postlethwait, John H.; Chen, Wenbiao

    2015-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in children and adults. While ADHD patients often display circadian abnormalities, the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Here we found that the zebrafish mutant for the circadian gene period1b (per1b) displays hyperactive, impulsive-like, and attention deficit-like behaviors and low levels of dopamine, reminiscent of human ADHD patients. We found that the circadian clock directly regulates dopamine-related genes monoamine oxidase and dopamine β hydroxylase, and acts via genes important for the development or maintenance of dopaminergic neurons to regulate their number and organization in the ventral diencephalic posterior tuberculum. We then found that Per1 knock-out mice also display ADHD-like symptoms and reduced levels of dopamine, thereby showing highly conserved roles of the circadian clock in ADHD. Our studies demonstrate that disruption of a circadian clock gene elicits ADHD-like syndrome. The circadian model for attention deficiency and hyperactive behavior sheds light on ADHD pathogenesis and opens avenues for exploring novel targets for diagnosis and therapy for this common psychiatric disorder. PMID:25673850

  14. Functional characterization of ether-à-go-go-related gene potassium channels in midbrain dopamine neurons - implications for a role in depolarization block.

    PubMed

    Ji, Huifang; Tucker, Kristal R; Putzier, Ilva; Huertas, Marco A; Horn, John P; Canavier, Carmen C; Levitan, Edwin S; Shepard, Paul D

    2012-10-01

    Bursting activity by midbrain dopamine neurons reflects the complex interplay between their intrinsic pacemaker activity and synaptic inputs. Although the precise mechanism responsible for the generation and modulation of bursting in vivo has yet to be established, several ion channels have been implicated in the process. Previous studies with nonselective blockers suggested that ether-à-go-go-related gene (ERG) K(+) channels are functionally significant. Here, electrophysiology with selective chemical and peptide ERG channel blockers (E-4031 and rBeKm-1) and computational methods were used to define the contribution made by ERG channels to the firing properties of midbrain dopamine neurons in vivo and in vitro. Selective ERG channel blockade increased the frequency of spontaneous activity as well as the response to depolarizing current pulses without altering spike frequency adaptation. ERG channel block also accelerated entry into depolarization inactivation during bursts elicited by virtual NMDA receptors generated with the dynamic clamp, and significantly prolonged the duration of the sustained depolarization inactivation that followed pharmacologically evoked bursts. In vivo, somatic ERG blockade was associated with an increase in bursting activity attributed to a reduction in doublet firing. Taken together, these results show that dopamine neuron ERG K(+) channels play a prominent role in limiting excitability and in minimizing depolarization inactivation. As the therapeutic actions of antipsychotic drugs are associated with depolarization inactivation of dopamine neurons and blockade of cardiac ERG channels is a prominent side effect of these drugs, ERG channels in the central nervous system may represent a novel target for antipsychotic drug development. PMID:22780096

  15. Progressive Axonal Degeneration of Nigrostriatal Dopaminergic Neurons in Calcium-Independent Phospholipase A2β Knockout Mice

    PubMed Central

    Beck, Goichi; Shinzawa, Koei; Hayakawa, Hideki; Baba, Kousuke; Sumi-Akamaru, Hisae; Tsujimoto, Yoshihide; Mochizuki, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    Calcium-independent phospholipase A2β (iPLA2β, PLA2G6) is essential for the remodeling of membrane glycerophospholipids. Mutations in this gene are responsible for autosomal recessive, young onset, L-dopa-responsive parkinsonism (PARK14), suggesting a neurodegenerative condition in the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system in patients with PLA2G6 mutations. We previously observed slowly progressive motor deficits in iPLA2β-knockout (KO) mice. To clarify whether a deficiency of iPLA2β leads to the degeneration of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, we analyzed the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice. At all clinical stages, nerve terminals in the striatum were immunopositive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and dopamine transporter (DAT) in wild-type (WT) control mice. In iPLA2β-KO mice, focal loss of nerve terminals positive for TH and DAT was found from 56 weeks (early clinical stage), although iPLA2β-KO mice at 56 weeks showed no significant decrease in the number of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra compared with age-matched WT mice, as reported previously. At 100 weeks (late clinical stage), greater decreases in DAT immunoreactivity were observed in the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice. Moreover, strongly TH-positive structures, presumed to be deformed axons, were observed in the neuropils of the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice starting at 15 weeks (preclinical stage) and increased with age. These results suggest that the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons occurs mainly in the distal region of axons in iPLA2β-KO mice. PMID:27078024

  16. Progressive Axonal Degeneration of Nigrostriatal Dopaminergic Neurons in Calcium-Independent Phospholipase A2β Knockout Mice.

    PubMed

    Beck, Goichi; Shinzawa, Koei; Hayakawa, Hideki; Baba, Kousuke; Sumi-Akamaru, Hisae; Tsujimoto, Yoshihide; Mochizuki, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    Calcium-independent phospholipase A2β (iPLA2β, PLA2G6) is essential for the remodeling of membrane glycerophospholipids. Mutations in this gene are responsible for autosomal recessive, young onset, L-dopa-responsive parkinsonism (PARK14), suggesting a neurodegenerative condition in the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system in patients with PLA2G6 mutations. We previously observed slowly progressive motor deficits in iPLA2β-knockout (KO) mice. To clarify whether a deficiency of iPLA2β leads to the degeneration of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, we analyzed the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice. At all clinical stages, nerve terminals in the striatum were immunopositive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and dopamine transporter (DAT) in wild-type (WT) control mice. In iPLA2β-KO mice, focal loss of nerve terminals positive for TH and DAT was found from 56 weeks (early clinical stage), although iPLA2β-KO mice at 56 weeks showed no significant decrease in the number of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra compared with age-matched WT mice, as reported previously. At 100 weeks (late clinical stage), greater decreases in DAT immunoreactivity were observed in the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice. Moreover, strongly TH-positive structures, presumed to be deformed axons, were observed in the neuropils of the striatum of iPLA2β-KO mice starting at 15 weeks (preclinical stage) and increased with age. These results suggest that the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons occurs mainly in the distal region of axons in iPLA2β-KO mice. PMID:27078024

  17. Selenoprotein T Exerts an Essential Oxidoreductase Activity That Protects Dopaminergic Neurons in Mouse Models of Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Boukhzar, Loubna; Hamieh, Abdallah; Cartier, Dorthe; Tanguy, Yannick; Alsharif, Ifat; Castex, Matthieu; Arabo, Arnaud; Hajji, Sana El; Bonnet, Jean-Jacques; Errami, Mohammed; Falluel-Morel, Anthony; Chagraoui, Abdeslam; Lihrmann, Isabelle

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Aims: Oxidative stress is central to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD), but the mechanisms involved in the control of this stress in dopaminergic cells are not fully understood. There is increasing evidence that selenoproteins play a central role in the control of redox homeostasis and cell defense, but the precise contribution of members of this family of proteins during the course of neurodegenerative diseases is still elusive. Results: We demonstrated first that selenoprotein T (SelT) whose gene disruption is lethal during embryogenesis, exerts a potent oxidoreductase activity. In the SH-SY5Y cell model of dopaminergic neurons, both silencing and overexpression of SelT affected oxidative stress and cell survival. Treatment with PD-inducing neurotoxins such as 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) or rotenone triggered SelT expression in the nigrostriatal pathway of wild-type mice, but provoked rapid and severe parkinsonian-like motor defects in conditional brain SelT-deficient mice. This motor impairment was associated with marked oxidative stress and neurodegeneration and decreased tyrosine hydroxylase activity and dopamine levels in the nigrostriatal system. Finally, in PD patients, we report that SelT is tremendously increased in the caudate putamen tissue. Innovation: These results reveal the activity of a novel selenoprotein enzyme that protects dopaminergic neurons against oxidative stress and prevents early and severe movement impairment in animal models of PD. Conclusions: Our findings indicate that selenoproteins such as SelT play a crucial role in the protection of dopaminergic neurons against oxidative stress and cell death, providing insight into the molecular underpinnings of this stress in PD. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 24, 557–574. PMID:26866473

  18. Inhibition of prothrombin kringle-2-induced inflammation by minocycline protects dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra in vivo.

    PubMed

    Nam, Jin Han; Leem, Eunju; Jeon, Min-Tae; Kim, Young-Je; Jung, Un Ju; Choi, Myung-Sook; Maeng, Sungho; Jin, Byung Kwan; Kim, Sang Ryong

    2014-05-01

    Prothrombin kringle-2 (pKr-2), a domain of prothrombin, can cause the degeneration of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons through microglial activation. However, the chemical products that inhibit pKr-2-induced inflammatory activities in the brain are still not well known. The present study investigated whether minocycline, a semisynthetic tetracycline derivative, could inhibit pKr-2-induced microglial activation and prevent the loss of nigral dopaminergic (DA) neurons in vivo. To address this question, rats were administered a unilateral injection of pKr-2 in the substantia nigra in the presence or absence of minocycline. Our results show that pKr-2 induces the production of proinflammatory cytokines, such as tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukin-1β (IL-1β), and inducible nitric oxide synthase from the activated microglia. In parallel, 7 days after pKr-2 injection, tyrosine hydroxylase immunocytochemical analysis and western blot analysis showed a significant loss of nigral DA neurons. This neurotoxicity was antagonized by minocycline and the observed neuroprotective effects were associated with the ability of minocycline to suppress the expression of tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1β, and nitric oxide synthase. These results suggest that minocycline may be promising as a potential therapeutic agent for the prevention of DA neuronal degeneration associated with pKr-2-induced microglial activation. PMID:24488033

  19. Expression by midbrain dopamine neurons of Sema3A and 3F receptors is associated with chemorepulsion in vitro but a mild in vivo phenotype.

    PubMed

    Torre, Enrique R; Gutekunst, Claire-Anne; Gross, Robert E

    2010-06-01

    Here we explore the role of semaphorin 3A and 3F (Sema3A, Sema3F) in the formation of the mesotelencephalic pathway. We show that Sema3A and 3F are expressed in the ventral mesencephalon (VM) of E13.5 rat embryos; the receptors Neuropilin 1 and Neuropilin 2, and co-receptors L1CAM, NrCAM, and Plexins A1 and A3 but not A4 are expressed by VM dopaminergic neurons; these neurons bind Sema3A and 3F in vitro which induces collapse of their growth cones and elicits, with different potencies, a repulsive response; and this response is absent in axons from Nrp1 and Nrp2 null embryos. Despite these in vitro effects, only very mild anatomical defects were detected in the organization of the mesotelencephalic pathway in embryonic and adult Nrp1 or Nrp2 null mice. However, the dopaminergic meso-habenular pathway and catecholaminergic neurons in the parafascicular and paraventricular nuclei of the thalamus were significantly affected in Nrp2 null mice. These data are consistent with a model whereby Sema3A and 3F, in combination with other guidance molecules, contributes to the navigation of DA axons to their final synaptic targets. PMID:20298787

  20. Differential dopaminergic regulation of inwardly rectifying potassium channel mediated subthreshold dynamics in striatal medium spiny neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Bo; Zhu, Junling; Dai, Dongqing; Xing, Junling; He, Jiahou; Fu, Zhanyan; Zhang, Lei; Li, Zhuyi; Wang, Wenting

    2016-08-01

    The dorsal striatum plays a key role in motor control and cognitive processes. Proper functioning of the striatum relies on the fine dynamic balance between the direct pathway projection medium spiny neurons (MSNs) that express D1 dopamine receptor (D1 MSNs) and indirect pathway projection MSNs that express D2 dopamine receptor (D2 MSNs). The inwardly rectifying K(+) channels (Kir), which express on both D1 and D2 MSNs, participate in the subthreshold dynamics including the membrane resonance and dendritic integration. However, it remains unclear whether dopamine differentially regulates Kir mediated subthreshold dynamics in two subtypes MSNs. Using transgenic mice that express either tdTomato in D1 MSNs or eGFP in D2 MSNs, we explored the Kir mediated subthreshold dynamics in D1 or D2 MSNs with whole cell patch clamp recording in acute brain slices. We found that D1 receptor agonist increased the Kir current while D2 receptor activation decreased the Kir conductance. The dopamine regulation of the Kir enhanced the resonant frequency and reduced the resonant impedance of D1 MSNs. The converse is ture for D2 MSNs. It also caused an opposing effect on dendritic integration between D1 and D2 MSNs, which can promote stability of the two pathways. The D1 receptor activation modulated Kir through cAMP-PKA signaling, whereas the D2 receptor modulated Kir through PLC-PKC signaling. Our findings demonstrated the differential dopaminergic regulation role of Kir, which mediates distinct subthreshold dynamics, and thus, contributes to the role of dopamine in fine tuning the balance of the striatal direct and indirect pathway activities. PMID:27018450

  1. A novel role for FOXA2 and SHH in organizing midbrain signaling centers.

    PubMed

    Bayly, Roy D; Brown, Charmaine Y; Agarwala, Seema

    2012-09-01

    The floor plate (FP) is a midline signaling center, known to direct ventral cell fates and axon guidance in the neural tube. The recent identification of midbrain FP as a source of dopaminergic neurons has renewed interest in its specification and organization, which remain poorly understood. In this study, we have examined the chick midbrain and spinal FP and show that both can be partitioned into medial (MFP) and lateral (LFP) subdivisions. Although Hedgehog (HH) signaling is necessary and sufficient for LFP specification, it is not sufficient for MFP induction. By contrast, the transcription factor FOXA2 can execute the full midbrain and spinal cord FP program via HH-independent and dependent mechanisms. Interestingly, although HH-independent FOXA2 activity is necessary and sufficient for inducing MFP-specific gene expression (e.g., LMX1B, BMP7), it cannot confer ventral identity to midline cells without also turning on Sonic hedgehog (SHH). We also note that the signaling centers of the midbrain, the FP, roof plate (RP) and the midbrain-hindbrain boundary (MHB) are physically contiguous, with each expressing LMX1B and BMP7. Possibly as a result, SHH or FOXA2 misexpression can transform the MHB into FP and also suppress RP induction. Conversely, HH or FOXA2 knockdown expands the endogenous RP and transforms the MFP into a RP and/or MHB fate. Finally, combined HH blockade and FOXA2 misexpression in ventral midbrain induces LMX1B expression, which triggers the specification of the RP, rather than the MFP. Thus we identify HH-independent and dependent roles for FOXA2 in specifying the FP. In addition, we elucidate for the first time, a novel role for SHH in determining whether a midbrain signaling center will become the FP, MHB or RP. PMID:22750257

  2. Suppression and facilitation of auditory neurons through coordinated acoustic and midbrain stimulation: investigating a deep brain stimulator for tinnitus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Offutt, Sarah J.; Ryan, Kellie J.; Konop, Alexander E.; Lim, Hubert H.

    2014-12-01

    Objective. The inferior colliculus (IC) is the primary processing center of auditory information in the midbrain and is one site of tinnitus-related activity. One potential option for suppressing the tinnitus percept is through deep brain stimulation via the auditory midbrain implant (AMI), which is designed for hearing restoration and is already being implanted in deaf patients who also have tinnitus. However, to assess the feasibility of AMI stimulation for tinnitus treatment we first need to characterize the functional connectivity within the IC. Previous studies have suggested modulatory projections from the dorsal cortex of the IC (ICD) to the central nucleus of the IC (ICC), though the functional properties of these projections need to be determined. Approach. In this study, we investigated the effects of electrical stimulation of the ICD on acoustic-driven activity within the ICC in ketamine-anesthetized guinea pigs. Main Results. We observed ICD stimulation induces both suppressive and facilitatory changes across ICC that can occur immediately during stimulation and remain after stimulation. Additionally, ICD stimulation paired with broadband noise stimulation at a specific delay can induce greater suppressive than facilitatory effects, especially when stimulating in more rostral and medial ICD locations. Significance. These findings demonstrate that ICD stimulation can induce specific types of plastic changes in ICC activity, which may be relevant for treating tinnitus. By using the AMI with electrode sites positioned with the ICD and the ICC, the modulatory effects of ICD stimulation can be tested directly in tinnitus patients.

  3. Loss of enteric dopaminergic neurons and associated changes in colon motility in an MPTP mouse model of Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Grant; Noorian, Ali Reza; Taylor, Georgia; Anitha, Mallappa; Bernhard, Doug; Srinivasan, Shanthi; Greene, James G.

    2007-01-01

    Gastrointestinal (GI) dysfunction is the most common non-motor symptom of Parkinson's disease (PD). Symptoms of GI dysmotility include early satiety and nausea from delayed gastric emptying, bloating from poor small bowel coordination, and constipation and defecatory dysfunction from impaired colonic transit. Understanding the pathophysiology and treatment of these symptoms in PD patients has been hampered by the lack of investigation into GI symptoms and pathology in PD animal models. We report that the prototypical parkinsonian neurotoxin, MPTP (1-methyl 4-phenyl 1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine), is a selective dopamine neuron toxin in the enteric nervous system (ENS). When examined 10 days after treatment, there was a 40% reduction of dopamine neurons in the ENS of C57Bl/6 mice administered MPTP (60 mg/kg). There were no differences in the density of cholinergic or nitric oxide neurons. Electrophysiological recording of neural-mediated muscle contraction in isolated colon from MPTP-treated animals confirmed a relaxation defect associated with dopaminergic degeneration. Behaviorally, MPTP induced a transient increase in colon motility, but no changes in gastric emptying or small intestine transit. These results provide the first comprehensive assessment of gastrointestinal pathophysiology in an animal model of PD. They provide insight into the impact of dopaminergic dysfunction on gastrointestinal motility and a benchmark for assessment of other PD model systems. PMID:17586496

  4. Odour enrichment increases adult-born dopaminergic neurons in the mouse olfactory bulb.

    PubMed

    Bonzano, Sara; Bovetti, Serena; Fasolo, Aldo; Peretto, Paolo; De Marchis, Silvia

    2014-11-01

    The olfactory bulb (OB) is the first brain region involved in the processing of olfactory information. In adult mice, the OB is highly plastic, undergoing cellular/molecular dynamic changes that are modulated by sensory experience. Odour deprivation induces down-regulation of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression in OB dopaminergic interneurons located in the glomerular layer (GL), resulting in decreased dopamine in the OB. Although the effect of sensory deprivation is well established, little is known about the influence of odour enrichment on dopaminergic cells. Here we report that prolonged odour enrichment on C57BL/6J strain mice selectively increases TH-immunopositive cells in the GL by nearly 20%. Following odour enrichment on TH-green fluorescent protein (GFP) transgenic mice, in which GFP identified both mature TH-positive cells and putative immature dopaminergic cells expressing TH mRNA but not TH protein, we found a similar 20% increase in GFP-expressing cells, with no changes in the ratio between TH-positive and TH-negative cells. These data suggest that enriched conditions induce an expansion in the whole dopaminergic lineage. Accordingly, by using 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine injections to label adult-generated cells in the GL of TH-GFP mice, we found an increase in the percentage of 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine-positive dopaminergic cells in enriched compared with control conditions, whereas no differences were found for calretinin- and calbindin-positive subtypes. Strikingly, the fraction of newborn cells among the dopaminergic population doubled in enriched conditions. On the whole, our results demonstrate that odour enrichment drives increased integration of adult-generated dopaminergic cells that could be critical to adapt the OB circuits to the environmental incoming information. PMID:25216299

  5. Transcription factor Six2 mediates the protection of GDNF on 6-OHDA lesioned dopaminergic neurons by regulating Smurf1 expression

    PubMed Central

    Gao, J; Kang, X-y; Sun, S; Li, L; Zhang, B-l; Li, Y-q; Gao, D-s

    2016-01-01

    Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has strong neuroprotective and neurorestorative effects on dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra (SN); however, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain to be fully elucidated. In this study, we found that the expression level of transcription factor Six2 was increased in damaged DA neurons after GDNF rescue in vivo and in vitro. Knockdown of Six2 resulted in decreased cell viability and increased the apoptosis of damaged DA neurons after GDNF treatment in vitro. In contrast, Six2 overexpression increased cell viability and decreased cell apoptosis. Furthermore, genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) indicated that Six2 directly bound to the promoter CAGCTG sequence of smad ubiquitylation regulatory factor 1 (Smurf1). ChIP-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) analysis showed that Smurf1 expression was significantly upregulated after GDNF rescue. Moreover, knockdown of Six2 decreased Smurf1 expression, whereas overexpression of Six2 increased Smurf1 expression in damaged DA neurons after GDNF rescue. Meanwhile, knockdown and overexpression of Smurf1 increased and decreased p53 expression, respectively. Taken together, our results from in vitro and in vivo analysis indicate that Six2 mediates the protective effects of GDNF on damaged DA neurons by regulating Smurf1 expression, which could be useful in identifying potential drug targets for injured DA neurons. PMID:27148690

  6. An update on the connections of the ventral mesencephalic dopaminergic complex

    PubMed Central

    Yetnikoff, Leora; Lavezzi, Heather N.; Reichard, Rhett A.; Zahm, Daniel S.

    2014-01-01

    This review covers the intrinsic organization and afferent and efferent connections of the midbrain dopaminergic complex, comprising the substantia nigra, ventral tegmental area and retrorubral field, which house, respectively, the A9, A10 and A8 groups of nigrostriatal, mesolimbic and mesocortical dopaminergic neurons. In addition, A10dc (dorsal, caudal) and A10rv (rostroventral) extensions into, respectively, the ventrolateral periaqueductal gray and supramammillary nucleus are discussed. Associated intrinsic and extrinsic connections of the midbrain dopaminergic complex that utilize gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), glutamate and neuropeptides and various co-expressed combinations of these compounds are considered in conjunction with the dopamine-containing systems. A framework is provided for understanding the organization of masssive afferent systems descending and ascending to the midbrain dopaminergic complex from the telencephalon and brainstem, respectively. Within the context of this framework, the basal ganglia direct and indirect output pathways are treated in some detail. Findings from rodent brain are briefly compared with those from primates, including human. Recent literature is emphasized, including traditional experimental neuroanatomical and modern gene transfer and optogenetic studies. An attempt was made to provide sufficient background and cite a representative sampling of earlier primary papers and reviews so that people new to the field may find this to be a relatively comprehensive treatment of the subject. PMID:24735820

  7. An update on the connections of the ventral mesencephalic dopaminergic complex.

    PubMed

    Yetnikoff, L; Lavezzi, H N; Reichard, R A; Zahm, D S

    2014-12-12

    This review covers the intrinsic organization and afferent and efferent connections of the midbrain dopaminergic complex, comprising the substantia nigra, ventral tegmental area and retrorubral field, which house, respectively, the A9, A10 and A8 groups of nigrostriatal, mesolimbic and mesocortical dopaminergic neurons. In addition, A10dc (dorsal, caudal) and A10rv (rostroventral) extensions into, respectively, the ventrolateral periaqueductal gray and supramammillary nucleus are discussed. Associated intrinsic and extrinsic connections of the midbrain dopaminergic complex that utilize gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), glutamate and neuropeptides and various co-expressed combinations of these compounds are considered in conjunction with the dopamine-containing systems. A framework is provided for understanding the organization of massive afferent systems descending and ascending to the midbrain dopaminergic complex from the telencephalon and brainstem, respectively. Within the context of this framework, the basal ganglia direct and indirect output pathways are treated in some detail. Findings from rodent brain are briefly compared with those from primates, including humans. Recent literature is emphasized, including traditional experimental neuroanatomical and modern gene transfer and optogenetic studies. An attempt was made to provide sufficient background and cite a representative sampling of earlier primary papers and reviews so that people new to the field may find this to be a relatively comprehensive treatment of the subject. PMID:24735820

  8. Speech Coding in the Brain: Representation of Vowel Formants by Midbrain Neurons Tuned to Sound Fluctuations(1,2,3).

    PubMed

    Carney, Laurel H; Li, Tianhao; McDonough, Joyce M

    2015-01-01

    Current models for neural coding of vowels are typically based on linear descriptions of the auditory periphery, and fail at high sound levels and in background noise. These models rely on either auditory nerve discharge rates or phase locking to temporal fine structure. However, both discharge rates and phase locking saturate at moderate to high sound levels, and phase locking is degraded in the CNS at middle to high frequencies. The fact that speech intelligibility is robust over a wide range of sound levels is problematic for codes that deteriorate as the sound level increases. Additionally, a successful neural code must function for speech in background noise at levels that are tolerated by listeners. The model presented here resolves these problems, and incorporates several key response properties of the nonlinear auditory periphery, including saturation, synchrony capture, and phase locking to both fine structure and envelope temporal features. The model also includes the properties of the auditory midbrain, where discharge rates are tuned to amplitude fluctuation rates. The nonlinear peripheral response features create contrasts in the amplitudes of low-frequency neural rate fluctuations across the population. These patterns of fluctuations result in a response profile in the midbrain that encodes vowel formants over a wide range of levels and in background noise. The hypothesized code is supported by electrophysiological recordings from the inferior colliculus of awake rabbits. This model provides information for understanding the structure of cross-linguistic vowel spaces, and suggests strategies for automatic formant detection and speech enhancement for listeners with hearing loss. PMID:26464993

  9. Speech Coding in the Brain: Representation of Vowel Formants by Midbrain Neurons Tuned to Sound Fluctuations1,2,3

    PubMed Central

    Li, Tianhao; McDonough, Joyce M.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Current models for neural coding of vowels are typically based on linear descriptions of the auditory periphery, and fail at high sound levels and in background noise. These models rely on either auditory nerve discharge rates or phase locking to temporal fine structure. However, both discharge rates and phase locking saturate at moderate to high sound levels, and phase locking is degraded in the CNS at middle to high frequencies. The fact that speech intelligibility is robust over a wide range of sound levels is problematic for codes that deteriorate as the sound level increases. Additionally, a successful neural code must function for speech in background noise at levels that are tolerated by listeners. The model presented here resolves these problems, and incorporates several key response properties of the nonlinear auditory periphery, including saturation, synchrony capture, and phase locking to both fine structure and envelope temporal features. The model also includes the properties of the auditory midbrain, where discharge rates are tuned to amplitude fluctuation rates. The nonlinear peripheral response features create contrasts in the amplitudes of low-frequency neural rate fluctuations across the population. These patterns of fluctuations result in a response profile in the midbrain that encodes vowel formants over a wide range of levels and in background noise. The hypothesized code is supported by electrophysiological recordings from the inferior colliculus of awake rabbits. This model provides information for understanding the structure of cross-linguistic vowel spaces, and suggests strategies for automatic formant detection and speech enhancement for listeners with hearing loss. PMID:26464993

  10. Dynamic temporal and cell type-specific expression of Wnt signaling components in the developing midbrain

    SciTech Connect

    Rawal, Nina; Castelo-Branco, Goncalo; Sousa, Kyle M.; Kele, Julianna; Kobayashi, Kazuto; Okano, Hideyuki; Arenas, Ernest . E-mail: Ernest.Arenas@ki.se

    2006-05-15

    Wnt1 and -5a have been shown to modulate the proliferation and differentiation of midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons. However, it is not known whether other Wnts or which Frizzled (Fz) receptors are expressed in the developing midbrain. We found that 13 out of 19 Wnts, all 10 Fzs, and several intracellular Wnt signaling modulators, including Axin, FRAT, Naked, Par-1, and Ltap are developmentally regulated between embryonic days (E) 10.5 and 15.5. Next, we studied whether Fzs are differentially expressed in different cell types and examined neuronal-progenitor- or glial-enriched cultures and DA neurons isolated from TH-GFP reporter mice. We found that Fz8 is expressed at high levels in DA neurons at E11.5 and E13.5. Fz6 and -7 are the predominant transcripts in glial precursors, and Fz9, which is absent in DA neurons at E11.5, is the main receptor expressed in neuronal precursors. We therefore examined the function of Fz9 in DA cells and found that overexpression of Fz9 reduced Wnt5a- but not Wnt3a-induced hyperphosphorylation of Dishevelled. Thus, our results show that Fzs are developmentally regulated and differentially expressed in VM precursors, DA neurons, and glia. These findings suggest that Fz expression contributes to provide specificity to Wnt-mediated effects.

  11. Dopamine synapse is a neuroligin-2-mediated contact between dopaminergic presynaptic and GABAergic postsynaptic structures.

    PubMed

    Uchigashima, Motokazu; Ohtsuka, Toshihisa; Kobayashi, Kazuto; Watanabe, Masahiko

    2016-04-12

    Midbrain dopamine neurons project densely to the striatum and form so-called dopamine synapses on medium spiny neurons (MSNs), principal neurons in the striatum. Because dopamine receptors are widely expressed away from dopamine synapses, it remains unclear how dopamine synapses are involved in dopaminergic transmission. Here we demonstrate that dopamine synapses are contacts formed between dopaminergic presynaptic and GABAergic postsynaptic structures. The presynaptic structure expressed tyrosine hydroxylase, vesicular monoamine transporter-2, and plasmalemmal dopamine transporter, which are essential for dopamine synthesis, vesicular filling, and recycling, but was below the detection threshold for molecules involving GABA synthesis and vesicular filling or for GABA itself. In contrast, the postsynaptic structure of dopamine synapses expressed GABAergic molecules, including postsynaptic adhesion molecule neuroligin-2, postsynaptic scaffolding molecule gephyrin, and GABAA receptor α1, without any specific clustering of dopamine receptors. Of these, neuroligin-2 promoted presynaptic differentiation in axons of midbrain dopamine neurons and striatal GABAergic neurons in culture. After neuroligin-2 knockdown in the striatum, a significant decrease of dopamine synapses coupled with a reciprocal increase of GABAergic synapses was observed on MSN dendrites. This finding suggests that neuroligin-2 controls striatal synapse formation by giving competitive advantage to heterologous dopamine synapses over conventional GABAergic synapses. Considering that MSN dendrites are preferential targets of dopamine synapses and express high levels of dopamine receptors, dopamine synapse formation may serve to increase the specificity and potency of dopaminergic modulation of striatal outputs by anchoring dopamine release sites to dopamine-sensing targets. PMID:27035941

  12. Inhibitory effect of A10 dopaminergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area on the orienting response evoked by acoustic stimulation in the cat.

    PubMed

    Crescimanno, G; Sorbera, F; Emmi, A; Amato, G

    1998-01-01

    The effect of bilateral electric stimulation of A10 dopaminergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area (80-300 microA, 20-50 Hz, 0.1-0.5 ms, 2 s duration) on latency and duration of the orienting response, evoked by acoustic stimuli (4500-8000 Hz, 2 s), was studied in the cat. A10 neuron stimulation, simultaneous with the acoustic one, was performed with threshold parameters inducing minimal behavioral signs (head searching movement, sniffing, increase in alertness). By means of a videoanalysis system, a statistically significant increase, both of latency and duration of the response, was observed. The possible role of dopamine was studied administrating sulpiride (20 mg/kg i.p.), a dopaminergic antagonist prevalently acting on the mesolimbic-mesocortical system. In this condition, the disappearance of A10 neuron effect occurred. Sulpiride injection did not affect the parameters of the orienting response to acoustic stimulus alone, suggesting a direct effect on A10 dopaminergic neurons. Moreover, when saline administration was carried out, no significant modification of the effects, obtained following A10 neuron activation, was observed. The data suggest that A10 dopaminergic neurons, origin of the mesolimbic-mesocortical system, may be involved in the control of the response to sensory stimuli, likely by influencing sensorimotor integration processes. An involvement in the inhibitory regulation of the switching of attention is also discussed. PMID:9434203

  13. 2-Amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP) is selectively toxic to primary dopaminergic neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Griggs, Amy M; Agim, Zeynep S; Mishra, Vartika R; Tambe, Mitali A; Director-Myska, Alison E; Turteltaub, Kenneth W; McCabe, George P; Rochet, Jean-Christophe; Cannon, Jason R

    2014-07-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease. Much data has linked the etiology of PD to a variety of environmental factors. The majority of cases are thought to arise from a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental factors. Chronic exposures to dietary factors, including meat, have been identified as potential risk factors. Although heterocyclic amines that are produced during high-temperature meat cooking are known to be carcinogenic, their effect on the nervous system has yet to be studied in depth. In this study, we investigated neurotoxic effects of 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP), a highly abundant heterocyclic amine in cooked meat, in vitro. We tested toxicity of PhIP and the two major phase I metabolites, N-OH-PhIP and 4'-OH-PhIP, using primary mesencephalic cultures from rat embryos. This culture system contains both dopaminergic and nondopaminergic neurons, which allows specificity of neurotoxicity to be readily examined. We find that exposure to PhIP or N-OH-PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons in primary cultures, resulting in a decreased percentage of dopaminergic neurons. Neurite length is decreased in surviving dopaminergic neurons. Exposure to 4'-OH-PhIP did not produce significant neurotoxicity. PhIP treatment also increased formation of oxidative damage markers, 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (HNE) and 3-nitrotyrosine in dopaminergic neurons. Pretreatment with N-acetylcysteine was protective. Finally, treatment with blueberry extract, a dietary factor with known antioxidant and other protective mechanisms, prevented PhIP-induced toxicity. Collectively, our study suggests, for the first time, that PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons likely through inducing oxidative stress. PMID:24718704

  14. 2-Amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP) Is Selectively Toxic to Primary Dopaminergic Neurons In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Griggs, Amy M.; Agim, Zeynep S.; Mishra, Vartika R.; Tambe, Mitali A.; Director-Myska, Alison E.; Turteltaub, Kenneth W.; McCabe, George P.; Rochet, Jean-Christophe; Cannon, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease. Much data has linked the etiology of PD to a variety of environmental factors. The majority of cases are thought to arise from a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental factors. Chronic exposures to dietary factors, including meat, have been identified as potential risk factors. Although heterocyclic amines that are produced during high-temperature meat cooking are known to be carcinogenic, their effect on the nervous system has yet to be studied in depth. In this study, we investigated neurotoxic effects of 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP), a highly abundant heterocyclic amine in cooked meat, in vitro. We tested toxicity of PhIP and the two major phase I metabolites, N-OH-PhIP and 4′-OH-PhIP, using primary mesencephalic cultures from rat embryos. This culture system contains both dopaminergic and nondopaminergic neurons, which allows specificity of neurotoxicity to be readily examined. We find that exposure to PhIP or N-OH-PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons in primary cultures, resulting in a decreased percentage of dopaminergic neurons. Neurite length is decreased in surviving dopaminergic neurons. Exposure to 4′-OH-PhIP did not produce significant neurotoxicity. PhIP treatment also increased formation of oxidative damage markers, 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (HNE) and 3-nitrotyrosine in dopaminergic neurons. Pretreatment with N-acetylcysteine was protective. Finally, treatment with blueberry extract, a dietary factor with known antioxidant and other protective mechanisms, prevented PhIP-induced toxicity. Collectively, our study suggests, for the first time, that PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons likely through inducing oxidative stress. PMID:24718704

  15. The Role of MAC1 in Diesel Exhaust Particle-induced Microglial Activation and Loss of Dopaminergic Neuron Function

    PubMed Central

    Levesque, Shannon; Taetzsch, Thomas; Lull, Melinda E.; Johnson, Jo Anne; McGraw, Constance; Block, Michelle L.

    2013-01-01

    Increasing reports support that air pollution causes neuroinflammation and is linked to central nervous system (CNS) disease/damage. Diesel exhaust particles (DEP) are a major component of urban air pollution, which has been linked to microglial activation and Parkinson’s disease-like pathology. To begin to address how DEP may exert CNS effects, microglia and neuron-glia cultures were treated with either nanometer-sized DEP (<0.22 µM; 50µg/mL), ultrafine carbon black (ufCB, 50µg/ml), or DEP extracts (eDEP; from 50 µg/ml DEP) and the effect of microglial activation and dopaminergic (DA) neuron function was assessed. All three treatments showed enhanced amoeboid microglia morphology, increased H2O2 production, and decreased DA uptake. Mechanistic inquiry revealed that the scavenger receptor inhibitor fucoidan blocked DEP internalization in microglia, but failed to alter DEP-induced H2O2 production in microglia. However, pretreatment with the MAC1/CD11b inhibitor antibody blocked microglial H2O2 production in response to DEP. MAC1−/− mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures were protected from DEP-induced loss of DA neuron function, as measured by DA uptake. These findings support that DEP may activate microglia through multiple mechanisms, where scavenger receptors regulate internalization of DEP and the MAC1 receptor is mandatory for both DEP-induced microglial H2O2 production and loss of DA neuron function. PMID:23470120

  16. The Neuroprotective Mechanism of Low-Frequency rTMS on Nigral Dopaminergic Neurons of Parkinson's Disease Model Mice

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Qiaoyun; Wang, Yanyong; Gu, Ping; Shao, Rusheng; Zhao, Li; Liu, Xiqi; Wang, Zhanqiang; Wang, Mingwei

    2015-01-01

    Background. Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disease in elder people, pathophysiologic basis of which is the severe deficiency of dopamine in the striatum. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the neuroprotective effect of low-frequency rTMS on Parkinson's disease in model mice. Methods. The effects of low-frequency rTMS on the motor function, cortex excitability, neurochemistry, and neurohistopathology of MPTP-induced Parkinson's disease mice were investigated through behavioral detection, electrophysiologic technique, high performance liquid chromatography-electrochemical detection, immunohistochemical staining, and western blot. Results. Low-frequency rTMS could improve the motor coordination impairment of Parkinson's disease mice: the resting motor threshold significantly decreased in the Parkinson's disease mice; the degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neuron and the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase were significantly improved by low-frequency rTMS; moreover, the expressions of brain derived neurotrophic factor and glial cell line derived neurotrophic factor were also improved by low-frequency rTMS. Conclusions. Low-frequency rTMS had a neuroprotective effect on the nigral dopaminergic neuron which might be due to the improved expressions of brain derived neurotrophic factor and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor. The present study provided a theoretical basis for the application of low-frequency rTMS in the clinical treatment and recovery of Parkinson's disease. PMID:25883828

  17. The Neuroprotective Mechanism of Low-Frequency rTMS on Nigral Dopaminergic Neurons of Parkinson's Disease Model Mice.

    PubMed

    Dong, Qiaoyun; Wang, Yanyong; Gu, Ping; Shao, Rusheng; Zhao, Li; Liu, Xiqi; Wang, Zhanqiang; Wang, Mingwei

    2015-01-01

    Background. Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disease in elder people, pathophysiologic basis of which is the severe deficiency of dopamine in the striatum. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the neuroprotective effect of low-frequency rTMS on Parkinson's disease in model mice. Methods. The effects of low-frequency rTMS on the motor function, cortex excitability, neurochemistry, and neurohistopathology of MPTP-induced Parkinson's disease mice were investigated through behavioral detection, electrophysiologic technique, high performance liquid chromatography-electrochemical detection, immunohistochemical staining, and western blot. Results. Low-frequency rTMS could improve the motor coordination impairment of Parkinson's disease mice: the resting motor threshold significantly decreased in the Parkinson's disease mice; the degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neuron and the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase were significantly improved by low-frequency rTMS; moreover, the expressions of brain derived neurotrophic factor and glial cell line derived neurotrophic factor were also improved by low-frequency rTMS. Conclusions. Low-frequency rTMS had a neuroprotective effect on the nigral dopaminergic neuron which might be due to the improved expressions of brain derived neurotrophic factor and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor. The present study provided a theoretical basis for the application of low-frequency rTMS in the clinical treatment and recovery of Parkinson's disease. PMID:25883828

  18. Associated degeneration of ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons in the rat nigrostriatal lactacystin model of parkinsonism and their neuroprotection by valproate

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Ian F.; Anis, Hiba K.; Dexter, David T.

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) manifests clinically as bradykinesia, rigidity, and development of a resting tremor, primarily due to degeneration of dopaminergic nigrostriatal pathways in the brain. Intranigral administration of the irreversible ubiquitin proteasome system inhibitor, lactacystin, has been used extensively to model nigrostriatal degeneration in rats, and study the effects of candidate neuroprotective agents on the integrity of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system. Recently however, adjacent extra-nigral brain regions such as the ventral tegmental area (VTA) have been noted to also become affected in this model, yet their integrity in studies of candidate neuroprotective agents in the model have largely been overlooked. Here we quantify the extent and distribution of dopaminergic degeneration in the VTA of rats intranigrally lesioned with lactacystin, and quantify the extent of VTA dopaminergic neuroprotection after systemic treatment with an epigenetic therapeutic agent, valproate, shown previously to protect dopaminergic SNpc neurons in this model. We found that unilateral intranigral administration of lactacystin resulted in a 53.81% and 31.72% interhemispheric loss of dopaminergic SNpc and VTA neurons, respectively. Daily systemic treatment of lactacystin lesioned rats with valproate however resulted in dose-dependant neuroprotection of VTA neurons. Our findings demonstrate that not only is the VTA also affected in the intranigral lactacystin rat model of PD, but that this extra-nigral brain region is substrate for neuroprotection by valproate, an agent shown previously to induce neuroprotection and neurorestoration of SNpc dopaminergic neurons in this model. Our results therefore suggest that valproate is a candidate for extra-nigral as well as intra-nigral neuroprotection. PMID:26742637

  19. Associated degeneration of ventral tegmental area dopaminergic neurons in the rat nigrostriatal lactacystin model of parkinsonism and their neuroprotection by valproate.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Ian F; Anis, Hiba K; Dexter, David T

    2016-02-12

    Parkinson's disease (PD) manifests clinically as bradykinesia, rigidity, and development of a resting tremor, primarily due to degeneration of dopaminergic nigrostriatal pathways in the brain. Intranigral administration of the irreversible ubiquitin proteasome system inhibitor, lactacystin, has been used extensively to model nigrostriatal degeneration in rats, and study the effects of candidate neuroprotective agents on the integrity of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system. Recently however, adjacent extra-nigral brain regions such as the ventral tegmental area (VTA) have been noted to also become affected in this model, yet their integrity in studies of candidate neuroprotective agents in the model have largely been overlooked. Here we quantify the extent and distribution of dopaminergic degeneration in the VTA of rats intranigrally lesioned with lactacystin, and quantify the extent of VTA dopaminergic neuroprotection after systemic treatment with an epigenetic therapeutic agent, valproate, shown previously to protect dopaminergic SNpc neurons in this model. We found that unilateral intranigral administration of lactacystin resulted in a 53.81% and 31.72% interhemispheric loss of dopaminergic SNpc and VTA neurons, respectively. Daily systemic treatment of lactacystin lesioned rats with valproate however resulted in dose-dependant neuroprotection of VTA neurons. Our findings demonstrate that not only is the VTA also affected in the intranigral lactacystin rat model of PD, but that this extra-nigral brain region is substrate for neuroprotection by valproate, an agent shown previously to induce neuroprotection and neurorestoration of SNpc dopaminergic neurons in this model. Our results therefore suggest that valproate is a candidate for extra-nigral as well as intra-nigral neuroprotection. PMID:26742637

  20. Dopaminergic Input to the Inferior Colliculus in Mice.

    PubMed

    Nevue, Alexander A; Elde, Cameron J; Perkel, David J; Portfors, Christine V

    2015-01-01

    The response of sensory neurons to stimuli can be modulated by a variety of factors including attention, emotion, behavioral context, and disorders involving neuromodulatory systems. For example, patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) have disordered speech processing, suggesting that dopamine alters normal representation of these salient sounds. Understanding the mechanisms by which dopamine modulates auditory processing is thus an important goal. The principal auditory midbrain nucleus, the inferior colliculus (IC), is a likely location for dopaminergic modulation of auditory processing because it contains dopamine receptors and nerve terminals immunoreactive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis. However, the sources of dopaminergic input to the IC are unknown. In this study, we iontophoretically injected a retrograde tracer into the IC of mice and then stained the tissue for TH. We also immunostained for dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH), an enzyme critical for the conversion of dopamine to norepinephrine, to differentiate between dopaminergic and noradrenergic inputs. Retrogradely labeled neurons that were positive for TH were seen bilaterally, with strong ipsilateral dominance, in the subparafascicular thalamic nucleus (SPF). All retrogradely labeled neurons that we observed in other brain regions were TH-negative. Projections from the SPF were confirmed using an anterograde tracer, revealing TH-positive and DBH-negative anterogradely labeled fibers and terminals in the IC. While the functional role of this dopaminergic input to the IC is not yet known, it provides a potential mechanism for context dependent modulation of auditory processing. PMID:26834578

  1. Dopaminergic Input to the Inferior Colliculus in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Nevue, Alexander A.; Elde, Cameron J.; Perkel, David J.; Portfors, Christine V.

    2016-01-01

    The response of sensory neurons to stimuli can be modulated by a variety of factors including attention, emotion, behavioral context, and disorders involving neuromodulatory systems. For example, patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) have disordered speech processing, suggesting that dopamine alters normal representation of these salient sounds. Understanding the mechanisms by which dopamine modulates auditory processing is thus an important goal. The principal auditory midbrain nucleus, the inferior colliculus (IC), is a likely location for dopaminergic modulation of auditory processing because it contains dopamine receptors and nerve terminals immunoreactive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine synthesis. However, the sources of dopaminergic input to the IC are unknown. In this study, we iontophoretically injected a retrograde tracer into the IC of mice and then stained the tissue for TH. We also immunostained for dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH), an enzyme critical for the conversion of dopamine to norepinephrine, to differentiate between dopaminergic and noradrenergic inputs. Retrogradely labeled neurons that were positive for TH were seen bilaterally, with strong ipsilateral dominance, in the subparafascicular thalamic nucleus (SPF). All retrogradely labeled neurons that we observed in other brain regions were TH-negative. Projections from the SPF were confirmed using an anterograde tracer, revealing TH-positive and DBH-negative anterogradely labeled fibers and terminals in the IC. While the functional role of this dopaminergic input to the IC is not yet known, it provides a potential mechanism for context dependent modulation of auditory processing. PMID:26834578

  2. A Mathematical Model of a Midbrain Dopamine Neuron Identifies Two Slow Variables Likely Responsible for Bursts Evoked by SK Channel Antagonists and Terminated by Depolarization Block.

    PubMed

    Yu, Na; Canavier, Carmen C

    2015-01-01

    Midbrain dopamine neurons exhibit a novel type of bursting that we call "inverted square wave bursting" when exposed to Ca(2+)-activated small conductance (SK) K(+) channel blockers in vitro. This type of bursting has three phases: hyperpolarized silence, spiking, and depolarization block. We find that two slow variables are required for this type of bursting, and we show that the three-dimensional bifurcation diagram for inverted square wave bursting is a folded surface with upper (depolarized) and lower (hyperpolarized) branches. The activation of the L-type Ca(2+) channel largely supports the separation between these branches. Spiking is initiated at a saddle node on an invariant circle bifurcation at the folded edge of the lower branch and the trajectory spirals around the unstable fixed points on the upper branch. Spiking is terminated at a supercritical Hopf bifurcation, but the trajectory remains on the upper branch until it hits a saddle node on the upper folded edge and drops to the lower branch. The two slow variables contribute as follows. A second, slow component of sodium channel inactivation is largely responsible for the initiation and termination of spiking. The slow activation of the ether-a-go-go-related (ERG) K(+) current is largely responsible for termination of the depolarized plateau. The mechanisms and slow processes identified herein may contribute to bursting as well as entry into and recovery from the depolarization block to different degrees in different subpopulations of dopamine neurons in vivo. PMID:25852980

  3. Absolute number of parvicellular and magnocellular neurons in the red nucleus of the rat midbrain: a stereological study.

    PubMed

    Aghoghovwia, Benjamin E; Oorschot, Dorothy E

    2016-09-01

    The absolute number of parvicellular and magnocellular neurons in the red nucleus was estimated using design-based stereological counting methods and systematic random sampling techniques. Six young adult male rats, and a complete set of serial 40-μm glycolmethacrylate sections for each rat, were used to quantify neuronal numbers. After a random start, a systematic subset (i.e. every third) of the serial sections was used to estimate the total volume of the red nucleus using Cavalieri's method. The same set of sampled sections was used to estimate the number of neurons in a known subvolume (i.e. the numerical density Nv ) by the optical disector method. Multiplication of the total volume by Nv yielded the absolute number of neurons. It was found that the right red nucleus consisted, on average, of 8400 parvicellular neurons (with a coefficient of variation of 0.16) and 7000 magnocellular neurons (0.12). These total neuronal numbers provide important data for the transfer of information through these nuclei and for species comparisons. PMID:27257130

  4. Prothrombin kringle-2 induces death of mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons in vivo and in vitro via microglial activation.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sang Ryong; Chung, Eun Sook; Bok, Eugene; Baik, Hyung Hwan; Chung, Young Cheul; Won, So Yoon; Joe, Eunhye; Kim, Tae Hyong; Kim, Soung Soo; Jin, Min Young; Choi, Sang Ho; Jin, Byung Kwan

    2010-05-15

    We have shown that prothrombin kringle-2 (pKr-2), a domain of human prothrombin distinct from thrombin could activate cultured rat brain microglia in vitro. However, little is known whether pKr-2-induced microglial activation could cause neurotoxicity on dopaminergic (DA) neurons in vivo. To address this question, pKr-2 was injected into the rat substantia nigra (SN). Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunohistochemistry experiments demonstrate significant loss of DA neurons seven days after injection of pKr-2. In parallel, pKr-2-activated microglia were detected in the SN with OX-42 and OX-6 immunohistochemistry. Reverse transcription PCR and double-label immunohistochemistry revealed that activated microglia in vivo exhibit early and transient expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) and several proinflammatory cytokines. The pKr-2-induced loss of SN DA neurons was partially inhibited by the NOS inhibitor N(G)-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester hydrochloride, and the COX-2 inhibitor DuP-697. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase were activated in the SN as early as 1 hr after pKr-2 injection, and localized within microglia. Inhibition of these kinases led to attenuation of mRNA expression of iNOS, COX-2 and several proinflammatory cytokines, and rescue of DA neurons in the SN. Intriguingly, following treatment with pKr-2 in vitro, neurotoxicity was detected exclusively in co-cultures of mesencephalic neurons and microglia, but not microglia-free neuron-enriched mesencephalic cultures, indicating that microglia are required for pKr-2 neurotoxicity. Our results strongly suggest that microglia activated by endogenous compound(s), such as pKr-2, are implicated in the DA neuronal cell death in the SN. PMID:20025058

  5. Delayed effects of methylmercury on the mitochondria of dopaminergic neurons and developmental toxicity in zebrafish larvae (Danio rerio).

    PubMed

    Huang, Susie S Y; Noble, Sandra; Godoy, Rafael; Ekker, Marc; Chan, Hing Man

    2016-06-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is a known neurotoxicant affecting the central nervous system but effects on dopaminergic (DA) neurons are not well understood. Wild-type zebrafish (Danio rerio) and two transgenic lines: Tg(dat:eGFP) expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) in DA neuron clusters and Tg(dat:tom20 MLS-mCherry) expressing red fluorescence (mCherry) targeted to mitochondria of DA neurons were used to evaluate the effects of micromolar MeHg exposure on DA neuron and whole animal motor function during early development. Three-day-old larvae were exposed to micromolar concentrations of MeHg (0.03, 0.06, and 0.3μM) in system water. Exposure to 0.3μM MeHg caused mortality and significant morphological abnormalities including edema, curvature of the spine, and hemorrhages in zebrafish larvae after a 48h exposure period. At 0.06μM MeHg, the appearance of morphological abnormalities was delayed for 72h and far less severe, whereas 0.03μM MeHg did not cause any morphological defects or mortalities. A delayed but significant reduction in locomotor ability and mCherry fluorescence in specific brain regions in the 0.06μM MeHg exposed larvae suggests that DA neuron function rather than neuron numbers was compromised. Double immunolabeling with tyrosine hydroxylase and pan neural staining showed no effect of MeHg exposure. We have established Tg(dat:tom20 MLS-mCherry) zebrafish larvae as a model which can be used to assess MeHg neurotoxicity and that exposure to low dose MeHg (0.06μM) during development may predispose DA neurons to impairment caused by changes in mitochondrial dynamics. PMID:26994370

  6. α-Synuclein propagates from mouse brain to grafted dopaminergic neurons and seeds aggregation in cultured human cells.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Christian; Angot, Elodie; Bergström, Ann-Louise; Steiner, Jennifer A; Pieri, Laura; Paul, Gesine; Outeiro, Tiago F; Melki, Ronald; Kallunki, Pekka; Fog, Karina; Li, Jia-Yi; Brundin, Patrik

    2011-02-01

    Post-mortem analyses of brains from patients with Parkinson disease who received fetal mesencephalic transplants show that α-synuclein-containing (α-syn-containing) Lewy bodies gradually appear in grafted neurons. Here, we explored whether intercellular transfer of α-syn from host to graft, followed by seeding of α-syn aggregation in recipient neurons, can contribute to this phenomenon. We assessed α-syn cell-to-cell transfer using microscopy, flow cytometry, and high-content screening in several coculture model systems. Coculturing cells engineered to express either GFP- or DsRed-tagged α-syn resulted in a gradual increase in double-labeled cells. Importantly, α-syn-GFP derived from 1 neuroblastoma cell line localized to red fluorescent aggregates in other cells expressing DsRed-α-syn, suggesting a seeding effect of transmitted α-syn. Extracellular α-syn was taken up by cells through endocytosis and interacted with intracellular α-syn. Next, following intracortical injection of recombinant α-syn in rats, we found neuronal uptake was attenuated by coinjection of an endocytosis inhibitor. Finally, we demonstrated in vivo transfer of α-syn between host cells and grafted dopaminergic neurons in mice overexpressing human α-syn. In summary, intercellularly transferred α-syn interacts with cytoplasmic α-syn and can propagate α-syn pathology. These results suggest that α-syn propagation is a key element in the progression of Parkinson disease pathology. PMID:21245577

  7. α-Synuclein propagates from mouse brain to grafted dopaminergic neurons and seeds aggregation in cultured human cells

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Christian; Angot, Elodie; Bergström, Ann-Louise; Steiner, Jennifer A.; Pieri, Laura; Paul, Gesine; Outeiro, Tiago F.; Melki, Ronald; Kallunki, Pekka; Fog, Karina; Li, Jia-Yi; Brundin, Patrik

    2011-01-01

    Post-mortem analyses of brains from patients with Parkinson disease who received fetal mesencephalic transplants show that α-synuclein–containing (α-syn–containing) Lewy bodies gradually appear in grafted neurons. Here, we explored whether intercellular transfer of α-syn from host to graft, followed by seeding of α-syn aggregation in recipient neurons, can contribute to this phenomenon. We assessed α-syn cell-to-cell transfer using microscopy, flow cytometry, and high-content screening in several coculture model systems. Coculturing cells engineered to express either GFP– or DsRed-tagged α-syn resulted in a gradual increase in double-labeled cells. Importantly, α-syn–GFP derived from 1 neuroblastoma cell line localized to red fluorescent aggregates in other cells expressing DsRed–α-syn, suggesting a seeding effect of transmitted α-syn. Extracellular α-syn was taken up by cells through endocytosis and interacted with intracellular α-syn. Next, following intracortical injection of recombinant α-syn in rats, we found neuronal uptake was attenuated by coinjection of an endocytosis inhibitor. Finally, we demonstrated in vivo transfer of α-syn between host cells and grafted dopaminergic neurons in mice overexpressing human α-syn. In summary, intercellularly transferred α-syn interacts with cytoplasmic α-syn and can propagate α-syn pathology. These results suggest that α-syn propagation is a key element in the progression of Parkinson disease pathology. PMID:21245577

  8. Absence of glia maturation factor protects dopaminergic neurons and improves motor behavior in mouse model of Parkinsonism

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Mohammad Moshahid; Zaheer, Smita; Ramasamy, Thangavel; Patel, Margi; Kempuraj, Duraisamy; Zaheer, Asgar

    2015-01-01

    Previously, we have shown that aberrant expression of glia maturation factor (GMF), a proinflammatory protein, is associated with the neuropathological conditions underlying diseases suggesting an important role for GMF in neurodegeneration. In the present study, we demonstrate that absence of GMF suppresses dopaminergic (DA) neuron loss, glial activation, and expression of proinflammatory mediators in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SN) and striatum (STR) of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) treated mice. Dopaminergic neuron numbers in the SN and fiber densities in the STR were reduced in wild type (Wt) mice when compared with GMF-deficient (GMF-KO) mice after MPTP treatment. We compared the motor abnormalities caused by MPTP treatment in Wt and GMF-KO mice as measured by Rota rod and grip strength test. Results show that the deficits in motor coordination and decrease in dopamine and its metabolite content were protected significantly in GMF-KO mice after MPTP treatment when compared with control Wt mice under identical experimental conditions. These findings were further supported by the immunohistochemical analysis that showed reduced glial activation in the SN of MPTP-treated GMF-KO mice. Similarly, in MPTP-treated GMF-KO mice, production of inflammatory tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukine-1 beta (IL-1β), granulocyte macrophage-colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF), and the chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) MCP-1 was suppressed, findings consistent with a role for GMF in MPTP neurotoxicity. In conclusion, present investigation provides the first evidence that deficiency of GMF protects the DA neuron loss and reduces the inflammatory load following MPTP administration in mice. Thus depletion of endogenous GMF represents an effective and selective strategy to slow down the MPTP-induced neurodegeneration. PMID:25754447

  9. Small molecule TrkB agonist deoxygedunin protects nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons from 6-OHDA and MPTP induced neurotoxicity in rodents.

    PubMed

    Nie, Shuke; Xu, Yan; Chen, Guiqin; Ma, Kai; Han, Chao; Guo, Zhenli; Zhang, Zhentao; Ye, Keqiang; Cao, Xuebing

    2015-12-01

    Dopaminergic neurons loss in the substantia nigra (SN) and dopamine (DA) content loss in the striatum correlate well with disease severity in Parkinson's disease (PD). Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a member of neurotrophin family and is necessary for the survival and development of DA neurons in the SN. Deficits in BDNF/TrkB receptors signaling contribute to the dysfunction of PD. Deoxygedunin, a derivative of gedunin produced from Indian neem tree, binds TrkB receptor and activates TrkB and its downstream signaling cascades in a BDNF-independent manner, and possesses neuroprotective effects in vitro and in vivo. In this study, we tested the neuroprotective effects of deoxygedunin in 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rat model and 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced mice model of Parkinson's disease. Rats were treated with deoxygedunin 5 mg/kg (i.p.) for one month started two weeks before 6-OHDA lesion (pre-treatment), or for two weeks right after lesion (post-treatment), with isovolumetric vehicle as control and normal. Mice were given deoxygedunin 5 mg/kg (i.p.) for 2 weeks and administrated with MPTP twice at the dose of 20 mg/kg (i.p.) on day 7. The results revealed that pretreatment with deoxygedunin improved PD models' behavioral performance and reduced dopaminergic neurons loss in SN, associated with the activation of TrkB receptors and its two major signaling cascades involving mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K). Thus, our current study indicates that deoxygedunin, as a small molecule TrkB agonist, displays prominent neuroprotective properties, providing a novel therapeutic strategy for treating Parkinson's disease. PMID:26282118

  10. New 6-Aminoquinoxaline Derivatives with Neuroprotective Effect on Dopaminergic Neurons in Cellular and Animal Parkinson Disease Models.

    PubMed

    Le Douaron, Gael; Ferrié, Laurent; Sepulveda-Diaz, Julia E; Amar, Majid; Harfouche, Abha; Séon-Méniel, Blandine; Raisman-Vozari, Rita; Michel, Patrick P; Figadère, Bruno

    2016-07-14

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder of aging characterized by motor symptoms that result from the loss of midbrain dopamine neurons and the disruption of dopamine-mediated neurotransmission. There is currently no curative treatment for this disorder. To discover druggable neuroprotective compounds for dopamine neurons, we have designed and synthesized a second-generation of quinoxaline-derived molecules based on structure-activity relationship studies, which led previously to the discovery of our first neuroprotective brain penetrant hit compound MPAQ (5c). Neuroprotection assessment in PD cellular models of our newly synthesized quinoxaline-derived compounds has led to the selection of a better hit compound, PAQ (4c). Extensive in vitro characterization of 4c showed that its neuroprotective action is partially attributable to the activation of reticulum endoplasmic ryanodine receptor channels. Most interestingly, 4c was able to attenuate neurodegeneration in a mouse model of PD, making this compound an interesting drug candidate for the treatment of this disorder. PMID:27341519

  11. CX3CR1 Disruption Differentially Influences Dopaminergic Neuron Degeneration in Parkinsonian Mice Depending on the Neurotoxin and Route of Administration.

    PubMed

    Tristão, Fabrine Sales Massafera; Lazzarini, Márcio; Martin, Sabine; Amar, Majid; Stühmer, Walter; Kirchhoff, Frank; Gomes, Lucas Araújo Caldi; Lanfumey, Laurance; Prediger, Rui D; Sepulveda, Julia E; Del-Bel, Elaine A; Raisman-Vozari, Rita

    2016-04-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons accompanied by an inflammatory reaction. The neuron-derived chemokine fractalkine (CX3CL1) is an exclusive ligand for the receptor CX3CR1 expressed on microglia. The CX3CL1/CX3CR1 signaling is important for sustaining microglial activity. Using a recently developed PD model, in which the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) toxin is delivered intranasally, we hypothesized that CX3CR1 could play a role in neurotoxicity and glial activation. For this, we used CX3CR1 knock-in mice and compared results with those obtained using the classical PD models through intraperitonal MPTP or intrastriatal 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). The striatum from all genotypes (CX3CR1(+/+), CX3CR1(+/GFP) and CX3CR1-deficient mice) showed a significant dopaminergic depletion after intranasal MPTP inoculation. In contrast to that, we could not see differences in the number of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of CX3CR1-deficient animals. Similarly, after 6-OHDA infusion, the CX3CR1 deletion decreased the amphetamine-induced turning behavior observed in CX3CR1(+/GFP) mice. After the 6-OHDA inoculation, a minor dopaminergic neuronal loss was observed in the substantia nigra from CX3CR1-deficient mice. Distinctly, a more extensive neuronal cell loss was observed in the substantia nigra after the intraperitoneal MPTP injection in CX3CR1 disrupted animals, corroborating previous results. Intranasal and intraperitoneal MPTP inoculation induced a similar microgliosis in CX3CR1-deficient mice but a dissimilar change in the astrocyte proliferation in the substantia nigra. Nigral astrocyte proliferation was observed only after intraperitoneal MPTP inoculation. In conclusion, intranasal MPTP and 6-OHDA lesion in CX3CR1-deficient mice yield no nigral dopaminergic neuron loss, linked to the absence of astroglial proliferation. PMID:26403659

  12. Midbrain dopamine neurons in Parkinson's disease exhibit a dysregulated miRNA and target-gene network.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Christine E; Wang, Yulei; Kong, Benjamin; Woo, Tsung-Ung W; Iyer, Lakshmanan K; Sonntag, Kai C

    2015-08-27

    The degeneration of substantia nigra (SN) dopamine (DA) neurons in sporadic Parkinson׳s disease (PD) is characterized by disturbed gene expression networks. Micro(mi)RNAs are post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression and we recently provided evidence that these molecules may play a functional role in the pathogenesis of PD. Here, we document a comprehensive analysis of miRNAs in SN DA neurons and PD, including sex differences. Our data show that miRNAs are dysregulated in disease-affected neurons and differentially expressed between male and female samples with a trend of more up-regulated miRNAs in males and more down-regulated miRNAs in females. Unbiased Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) revealed a network of miRNA/target-gene associations that is consistent with dysfunctional gene and signaling pathways in PD pathology. Our study provides evidence for a general association of miRNAs with the cellular function and identity of SN DA neurons, and with deregulated gene expression networks and signaling pathways related to PD pathogenesis that may be sex-specific. PMID:26047984

  13. The ADHD-susceptibility gene lphn3.1 modulates dopaminergic neuron formation and locomotor activity during zebrafish development.

    PubMed

    Lange, M; Norton, W; Coolen, M; Chaminade, M; Merker, S; Proft, F; Schmitt, A; Vernier, P; Lesch, K-P; Bally-Cuif, L

    2012-09-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by inattention, hyperactivity, increased impulsivity and emotion dysregulation. Linkage analysis followed by fine-mapping identified variation in the gene coding for Latrophilin 3 (LPHN3), a putative adhesion-G protein-coupled receptor, as a risk factor for ADHD. In order to validate the link between LPHN3 and ADHD, and to understand the function of LPHN3 in the etiology of the disease, we examined its ortholog lphn3.1 during zebrafish development. Loss of lphn3.1 function causes a reduction and misplacement of dopamine-positive neurons in the ventral diencephalon and a hyperactive/impulsive motor phenotype. The behavioral phenotype can be rescued by the ADHD treatment drugs methylphenidate and atomoxetine. Together, our results implicate decreased Lphn3 activity in eliciting ADHD-like behavior, and demonstrate its correlated contribution to the development of the brain dopaminergic circuitry. PMID:22508465

  14. Dopaminergic-Like Neurons Derived from Oral Mucosa Stem Cells by Developmental Cues Improve Symptoms in the Hemi-Parkinsonian Rat Model

    PubMed Central

    Ganz, Javier; Arie, Ina; Buch, Sigal; Zur, Tali Ben; Barhum, Yael; Pour, Sammy; Araidy, Shareef; Pitaru, Sandu; Offen, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Achieving safe and readily accessible sources for cell replacement therapy in Parkinson’s disease (PD) is still a challenging unresolved issue. Recently, a primitive neural crest stem cell population (hOMSC) was isolated from the adult human oral mucosa and characterized in vitro and in vivo. In this study we assessed hOMSC ability to differentiate into dopamine-secreting cells with a neuronal-dopaminergic phenotype in vitro in response to dopaminergic developmental cues and tested their therapeutic potential in the hemi-Parkinsonian rat model. We found that hOMSC express constitutively a repertoire of neuronal and dopaminergic markers and pivotal transcription factors. Soluble developmental factors induced a reproducible neuronal-like morphology in the majority of hOMSC, downregulated stem cells markers, upregulated the expression of the neuronal and dopaminergic markers that resulted in dopamine release capabilities. Transplantation of these dopaminergic-induced hOMSC into the striatum of hemi-Parkinsonian rats improved their behavioral deficits as determined by amphetamine-induced rotational behavior, motor asymmetry and motor coordination tests. Human TH expressing cells and increased levels of dopamine in the transplanted hemispheres were observed 10 weeks after transplantation. These results demonstrate for the first time that soluble factors involved in the development of DA neurons, induced a DA phenotype in hOMSC in vitro that significantly improved the motor function of hemiparkinsonian rats. Based on their neural-related origin, their niche accessibility by minimal-invasive procedures and their propensity for DA differentiation, hOMSC emerge as an attractive tool for autologous cell replacement therapy in PD. PMID:24945922

  15. n-Butylidenephthalide Protects against Dopaminergic Neuron Degeneration and α-Synuclein Accumulation in Caenorhabditis elegans Models of Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Ru-Huei; Harn, Horng-Jyh; Liu, Shih-Ping; Chen, Chang-Shi; Chang, Wen-Lin; Chen, Yue-Mi; Huang, Jing-En; Li, Rong-Jhu; Tsai, Sung-Yu; Hung, Huey-Shan; Shyu, Woei-Cherng; Lin, Shinn-Zong; Wang, Yu-Chi

    2014-01-01

    Background Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that impairs motor skills and cognitive function. To date, the disease has no effective therapies. The identification of new drugs that provide benefit in arresting the decline seen in PD patients is the focus of much recent study. However, the lengthy time frame for the progression of neurodegeneration in PD increases both the time and cost of examining potential therapeutic compounds in mammalian models. An alternative is to first evaluate the efficacy of compounds in Caenorhabditis elegans models, which reduces examination time from months to days. n-Butylidenephthalide is the naturally-occurring component derived from the chloroform extract of Angelica sinensis. It has been shown to have anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory properties, but no reports have yet described the effects of n-butylidenephthalide on PD. The aim of this study was to assess the potential for n-butylidenephthalide to improve PD in C. elegans models. Methodology/Principal Findings In the current study, we employed a pharmacological strain that expresses green fluorescent protein specifically in dopaminergic neurons (BZ555) and a transgenic strain that expresses human α-synuclein in muscle cells (OW13) to investigate the antiparkinsonian activities of n-butylidenephthalide. Our results demonstrate that in PD animal models, n-butylidenephthalide significantly attenuates dopaminergic neuron degeneration induced by 6-hydroxydopamine; reduces α-synuclein accumulation; recovers lipid content, food-sensing behavior, and dopamine levels; and prolongs life-span of 6-hydroxydopamine treatment, thus revealing its potential as a possible antiparkinsonian drug. n-Butylidenephthalide may exert its effects by blocking egl-1 expression to inhibit apoptosis pathways and by raising rpn-6 expression to enhance the activity of proteasomes. Conclusions/Significance n-Butylidenephthalide may be one of

  16. Generation of reactive oxygen species in 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) treated dopaminergic neurons occurs as an NADPH oxidase-dependent two-wave cascade

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Reactive oxygen species (ROS), superoxide and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), are necessary for appropriate responses to immune challenges. In the brain, excess superoxide production predicts neuronal cell loss, suggesting that Parkinson's disease (PD) with its wholesale death of dopaminergic neurons in substantia nigra pars compacta (nigra) may be a case in point. Although microglial NADPH oxidase-produced superoxide contributes to dopaminergic neuron death in an MPTP mouse model of PD, this is secondary to an initial die off of such neurons, suggesting that the initial MPTP-induced death of neurons may be via activation of NADPH oxidase in neurons themselves, thus providing an early therapeutic target. Methods NADPH oxidase subunits were visualized in adult mouse nigra neurons and in N27 rat dopaminergic cells by immunofluorescence. NADPH oxidase subunits in N27 cell cultures were detected by immunoblots and RT-PCR. Superoxide was measured by flow cytometric detection of H2O2-induced carboxy-H2-DCFDA fluorescence. Cells were treated with MPP+ (MPTP metabolite) following siRNA silencing of the Nox2-stabilizing subunit p22phox, or simultaneously with NADPH oxidase pharmacological inhibitors or with losartan to antagonize angiotensin II type 1 receptor-induced NADPH oxidase activation. Results Nigral dopaminergic neurons in situ expressed three subunits necessary for NADPH oxidase activation, and these as well as several other NADPH oxidase subunits and their encoding mRNAs were detected in unstimulated N27 cells. Overnight MPP+ treatment of N27 cells induced Nox2 protein and superoxide generation, which was counteracted by NADPH oxidase inhibitors, by siRNA silencing of p22phox, or losartan. A two-wave ROS cascade was identified: 1) as a first wave, mitochondrial H2O2 production was first noted at three hours of MPP+ treatment; and 2) as a second wave, H2O2 levels were further increased by 24 hours. This second wave was eliminated by pharmacological inhibitors

  17. Estrogen-related receptor gamma regulates dopaminergic neuronal phenotype by activating GSK3β/NFAT signaling in SH-SY5Y cells.

    PubMed

    Lim, Juhee; Choi, Hueng-Sik; Choi, Hyun Jin

    2015-05-01

    The orphan nuclear receptor estrogen-related receptor gamma (ERRγ) is highly expressed in the nervous system during embryogenesis and in adult brains, but its physiological role in neuronal development remains unknown. In this study, we evaluated the relevance of ERRγ in regulating dopaminergic (DAergic) phenotype and the corresponding signaling pathway. We used retinoic acid (RA) to differentiate human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. RA induced neurite outgrowth of SH-SY5Y cells with an increase in DAergic neuron-like properties, including up-regulation of tyrosine hydroxylase, dopamine transporter, and vesicular monoamine transporter 2. ERRγ, but not ERRα, was up-regulated by RA, and participated in RA effect on SH-SY5Y cells. ERRγ over-expression enhanced mature DAergic neuronal phenotype with neurite outgrowth as with RA treatment; and RA-induced increase in DAergic phenotype was attenuated by silencing ERRγ expression. ERRγ appears to have a crucial role in morphological and functional regulation of cells that is selective for DAergic neurons. Polo-like kinase 2 was up-regulated in ERRγ-over-expressing SH-SY5Y cells, which was involved in phosphorylation of glycogen synthase kinase 3β and resulting downstream activation of nuclear factor of activated T cells. The likely involvement of ERRγ in regulating the DAergic neuronal phenotype makes this orphan nuclear receptor a novel target for understanding DAergic neuronal differentiation. We propose the relevance of estrogen-related receptor gamma (ERRγ) in regulating dopaminergic neuronal phenotype: ERRγ is up-regulated by retinoic acid in SH-SY5Y cells, and enhances dopaminergic phenotypes and induces neurite outgrowth; Polo-like kinase 2 (PLK2) and glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta/nuclear factor of activated T cells (GSK3β/NFAT) signaling are responsible for the ERRγ effect. Our findings provide the first insights into the role of ERRγ in the brain, as a novel approach toward understanding

  18. DYRK1A promotes dopaminergic neuron survival in the developing brain and in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Barallobre, M J; Perier, C; Bové, J; Laguna, A; Delabar, J M; Vila, M; Arbonés, M L

    2014-01-01

    In the brain, programmed cell death (PCD) serves to adjust the numbers of the different types of neurons during development, and its pathological reactivation in the adult leads to neurodegeneration. Dual-specificity tyrosine-(Y)-phosphorylation regulated kinase 1A (DYRK1A) is a pleiotropic kinase involved in neural proliferation and cell death, and its role during brain growth is evolutionarily conserved. Human DYRK1A lies in the Down syndrome critical region on chromosome 21, and heterozygous mutations in the gene cause microcephaly and neurological dysfunction. The mouse model for DYRK1A haploinsufficiency (the Dyrk1a+/− mouse) presents neuronal deficits in specific regions of the adult brain, including the substantia nigra (SN), although the mechanisms underlying these pathogenic effects remain unclear. Here we study the effect of DYRK1A copy number variation on dopaminergic cell homeostasis. We show that mesencephalic DA (mDA) neurons are generated in the embryo at normal rates in the Dyrk1a haploinsufficient model and in a model (the mBACtgDyrk1a mouse) that carries three copies of Dyrk1a. We also show that the number of mDA cells diminishes in postnatal Dyrk1a+/− mice and increases in mBACtgDyrk1a mice due to an abnormal activity of the mitochondrial caspase9 (Casp9)-dependent apoptotic pathway during the main wave of PCD that affects these neurons. In addition, we show that the cell death induced by 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6 tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), a toxin that activates Casp9-dependent apoptosis in mDA neurons, is attenuated in adult mBACtgDyrk1a mice, leading to an increased survival of SN DA neurons 21 days after MPTP intoxication. Finally, we present data indicating that Dyrk1a phosphorylation of Casp9 at the Thr125 residue is the mechanism by which this kinase hinders both physiological and pathological PCD in mDA neurons. These data provide new insight into the mechanisms that control cell death in brain DA neurons and they show that

  19. Intrastriatal GDNF gene transfer by inducible lentivirus vectors protects dopaminergic neurons in a rat model of parkinsonism.

    PubMed

    Chen, Sha-Sha; Yang, Chun; Hao, Fei; Li, Chen; Lu, Tao; Zhao, Li-Ru; Duan, Wei-Ming

    2014-11-01

    Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has neuroprotective effects on dopaminergic (DA) neurons both in vivo and in vitro. However, substantial evidence has shown that a long-term overexpression of GDNF gene is often associated with side effects. We previously improved tetracycline (Tet)-On lentivirus system carrying human GDNF (hGDNF) gene, and demonstrated that hGDNF gene expression was tightly regulated and functional in vitro. Here we further examined the efficiency and neuroprotection of Tet-On lentivirus-mediated hGDNF gene regulation in neural progenitor cells (NPCs) and a rat model of parkinsonism. The results showed that hGDNF gene expression was tightly regulated in transduced NPCs. Doxycycline (Dox)-induced hGDNF protected DA neurons from 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced toxicity in vitro. Intrastriatal injections of Tet-On lentivirus vectors resulted in dramatically increased levels of hGDNF protein in the striatum of rats with Dox-drinking water, when compared to lentivirus-injected and saline-injected rats with normal drinking water, respectively. In addition, hGDNF protected nigral DA neurons and striatal DA fibers, and attenuated d-amphetamine-induced rotational asymmetry in the 6-OHDA lesioned rats. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report that hGDNF gene transfer by Tet-On lentivirus vectors is tightly regulated in rat brain, and Dox-induced hGDNF is functional in neuroprotection of nigral DA neurons in a rat model of parkinsonism. PMID:24997241

  20. Iron Oxide Nanoparticles Induce Dopaminergic Damage: In vitro Pathways and In Vivo Imaging Reveals Mechanism of Neuronal Damage.

    PubMed

    Imam, Syed Z; Lantz-McPeak, Susan M; Cuevas, Elvis; Rosas-Hernandez, Hector; Liachenko, Serguei; Zhang, Yongbin; Sarkar, Sumit; Ramu, Jaivijay; Robinson, Bonnie L; Jones, Yvonne; Gough, Bobby; Paule, Merle G; Ali, Syed F; Binienda, Zbigniew K

    2015-10-01

    Various iron-oxide nanoparticles have been in use for a long time as therapeutic and imaging agents and for supplemental delivery in cases of iron-deficiency. While all of these products have a specified size range of ∼ 40 nm and above, efforts are underway to produce smaller particles, down to ∼ 1 nm. Here, we show that after a 24-h exposure of SHSY-5Y human neuroblastoma cells to 10 μg/ml of 10 and 30 nm ferric oxide nanoparticles (Fe-NPs), cellular dopamine content was depleted by 68 and 52 %, respectively. Increases in activated tyrosine kinase c-Abl, a molecular switch induced by oxidative stress, and neuronal α-synuclein expression, a protein marker associated with neuronal injury, were also observed (55 and 38 % percent increases, respectively). Inhibition of cell-proliferation, significant reductions in the number of active mitochondria, and a dose-dependent increase in reactive oxygen species (ROS) were observed in neuronal cells. Additionally, using a rat in vitro blood-brain barrier (BBB) model, a dose-dependent increase in ROS accompanied by increased fluorescein efflux demonstrated compromised BBB integrity. To assess translational implications, in vivo Fe-NP-induced neurotoxicity was determined using in vivo MRI and post-mortem neurochemical and neuropathological correlates in adult male rats after exposure to 50 mg/kg of 10 nm Fe-NPs. Significant decrease in T 2 values was observed. Dynamic observations suggested transfer and retention of Fe-NPs from brain vasculature into brain ventricles. A significant decrease in striatal dopamine and its metabolites was also observed, and neuropathological correlates provided additional evidence of significant nerve cell body and dopaminergic terminal damage as well as damage to neuronal vasculature after exposure to 10 nm Fe-NPs. These data demonstrate a neurotoxic potential of very small size iron nanoparticles and suggest that use of these ferric oxide nanoparticles may result in neurotoxicity, thereby

  1. Intranasal insulin protects against substantia nigra dopaminergic neuronal loss and alleviates motor deficits induced by 6-OHDA in rats.

    PubMed

    Pang, Y; Lin, S; Wright, C; Shen, J; Carter, K; Bhatt, A; Fan, L-W

    2016-03-24

    Protection of substantia nigra (SN) dopaminergic (DA) neurons by neurotrophic factors (NTFs) is one of the promising strategies in Parkinson's disease (PD) therapy. A major clinical challenge for NTF-based therapy is that NTFs need to be delivered into the brain via invasive means, which often shows limited delivery efficiency. The nose to brain pathway is a non-invasive brain drug delivery approach developed in recent years. Of particular interest is the finding that intranasal insulin improves cognitive functions in Alzheimer's patients. In vitro, insulin has been shown to protect neurons against various insults. Therefore, the current study was designed to test whether intranasal insulin could afford neuroprotection in the 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-based rat PD model. 6-OHDA was injected into the right side of striatum to induce a progressive DA neuronal lesion in the ipsilateral SN pars compact (SNc). Recombinant human insulin was applied intranasally to rats starting from 24h post lesion, once per day, for 2 weeks. A battery of motor behavioral tests was conducted on day 8 and 15. The number of DA neurons in the SNc was estimated by stereological counting. Our results showed that 6-OHDA injection led to significant motor deficits and 53% of DA neuron loss in the ipsilateral side of injection. Treatment with insulin significantly ameliorated 6-OHDA-induced motor impairments, as shown by improved locomotor activity, tapered/ledged beam-walking performance, vibrissa-elicited forelimb-placing, initial steps, as well as methamphetamine-induced rotational behavior. Consistent with behavioral improvements, insulin treatment provided a potent protection of DA neurons in the SNc against 6-OHDA neurotoxicity, as shown by a 74.8% increase in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons compared to the vehicle group. Intranasal insulin treatment did not affect body weight and blood glucose levels. In conclusion, our study showed that intranasal insulin provided strong

  2. Klotho Protects Dopaminergic Neuron Oxidant-Induced Degeneration by Modulating ASK1 and p38 MAPK Signaling Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Brobey, Reynolds K.; German, Dwight; Sonsalla, Patricia K.; Gurnani, Prem; Pastor, Johanne; Hsieh, C-C; Papaconstantinou, John; Foster, Philip P.; Kuro-o, Makoto; Rosenblatt, Kevin P.

    2015-01-01

    Klotho transgenic mice exhibit resistance to oxidative stress as measured by their urinal levels of 8-hydroxy-2-deoxyguanosine, albeit this anti-oxidant defense mechanism has not been locally investigated in the brain. Here, we tested the hypothesis that the reactive oxygen species (ROS)-sensitive apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1 (ASK1)/p38 MAPK pathway regulates stress levels in the brain of these mice and showed that: 1) the ratio of free ASK1 to thioredoxin (Trx)-bound ASK1 is relatively lower in the transgenic brain whereas the reverse is true for the Klotho knockout mice; 2) the reduced p38 activation level in the transgene corresponds to higher level of ASK1-bound Trx, while the KO mice showed elevated p38 activation and lower level of–bound Trx; and 3) that 14-3-3ζ is hyper phosphorylated (Ser-58) in the transgene which correlated with increased monomer forms. In addition, we evaluated the in vivo robustness of the protection by challenging the brains of Klotho transgenic mice with a neurotoxin, MPTP and analyzed for residual neuron numbers and integrity in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Our results show that Klotho overexpression significantly protects dopaminergic neurons against oxidative damage, partly by modulating p38 MAPK activation level. Our data highlight the importance of ASK1/p38 MAPK pathway in the brain and identify Klotho as a possible anti-oxidant effector. PMID:26452228

  3. Klotho Protects Dopaminergic Neuron Oxidant-Induced Degeneration by Modulating ASK1 and p38 MAPK Signaling Pathways.

    PubMed

    Brobey, Reynolds K; German, Dwight; Sonsalla, Patricia K; Gurnani, Prem; Pastor, Johanne; Hsieh, C-C; Papaconstantinou, John; Foster, Philip P; Kuro-o, Makoto; Rosenblatt, Kevin P

    2015-01-01

    Klotho transgenic mice exhibit resistance to oxidative stress as measured by their urinal levels of 8-hydroxy-2-deoxyguanosine, albeit this anti-oxidant defense mechanism has not been locally investigated in the brain. Here, we tested the hypothesis that the reactive oxygen species (ROS)-sensitive apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1 (ASK1)/p38 MAPK pathway regulates stress levels in the brain of these mice and showed that: 1) the ratio of free ASK1 to thioredoxin (Trx)-bound ASK1 is relatively lower in the transgenic brain whereas the reverse is true for the Klotho knockout mice; 2) the reduced p38 activation level in the transgene corresponds to higher level of ASK1-bound Trx, while the KO mice showed elevated p38 activation and lower level of-bound Trx; and 3) that 14-3-3ζ is hyper phosphorylated (Ser-58) in the transgene which correlated with increased monomer forms. In addition, we evaluated the in vivo robustness of the protection by challenging the brains of Klotho transgenic mice with a neurotoxin, MPTP and analyzed for residual neuron numbers and integrity in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Our results show that Klotho overexpression significantly protects dopaminergic neurons against oxidative damage, partly by modulating p38 MAPK activation level. Our data highlight the importance of ASK1/p38 MAPK pathway in the brain and identify Klotho as a possible anti-oxidant effector. PMID:26452228

  4. Activity in descending dopaminergic neurons represents but is not required for leg movements in the fruit fly Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Tschida, Katherine; Bhandawat, Vikas

    2015-01-01

    Modulatory descending neurons (DNs) that link the brain to body motor circuits, including dopaminergic DNs (DA-DNs), are thought to contribute to the flexible control of behavior. Dopamine elicits locomotor-like outputs and influences neuronal excitability in isolated body motor circuits over tens of seconds to minutes, but it remains unknown how and over what time scale DA-DN activity relates to movement in behaving animals. To address this question, we identified DA-DNs in the Drosophila brain and developed an electrophysiological preparation to record and manipulate the activity of these cells during behavior. We find that DA-DN spike rates are rapidly modulated during a subset of leg movements and scale with the total speed of ongoing leg movements, whether occurring spontaneously or in response to stimuli. However, activating DA-DNs does not elicit leg movements in intact flies, nor do acute bidirectional manipulations of DA-DN activity affect the probability or speed of leg movements over a time scale of seconds to minutes. Our findings indicate that in the context of intact descending control, changes in DA-DN activity are not sufficient to influence ongoing leg movements and open the door to studies investigating how these cells interact with other descending and local neuromodulatory inputs to influence body motor output. PMID:25742959

  5. Rapid signalling in distinct dopaminergic axons during locomotion and reward.

    PubMed

    Howe, M W; Dombeck, D A

    2016-07-28

    Dopaminergic projection axons from the midbrain to the striatum are crucial for motor control, as their degeneration in Parkinson disease results in profound movement deficits. Paradoxically, most recording methods report rapid phasic dopamine signalling (~100-ms bursts) in response to unpredicted rewards, with little evidence for movement-related signalling. The leading model posits that phasic signalling in striatum-targeting dopamine neurons drives reward-based learning, whereas slow variations in firing (tens of seconds to minutes) in these same neurons bias animals towards or away from movement. However, current methods have provided little evidence to support or refute this model. Here, using new optical recording methods, we report the discovery of rapid phasic signalling in striatum-targeting dopaminergic axons that is associated with, and capable of triggering, locomotion in mice. Axons expressing these signals were largely distinct from those that responded to unexpected rewards. These results suggest that dopaminergic neuromodulation can differentially impact motor control and reward learning with sub-second precision, and indicate that both precise signal timing and neuronal subtype are important parameters to consider in the treatment of dopamine-related disorders. PMID:27398617

  6. Control of proliferation rate of N27 dopaminergic neurons using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation orientation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, Yiwen; Hadimani, Ravi; Anantharam, Vellareddy; Kanthasamy, Anumantha; Jiles, David

    2015-03-01

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has been used to investigate possible treatments for a variety of neurological disorders. However, the effect that magnetic fields have on neurons has not been well documented in the literature. We have investigated the effect of different orientation of magnetic field generated by TMS coils with a monophasic stimulator on the proliferation rate of N27 neuronal cells cultured in flasks and multi-well plates. The proliferation rate of neurons would increase by exposed horizontally adherent N27 cells to a magnetic field pointing upward through the neuronal proliferation layer compared with the control group. On the other hand, proliferation rate would decrease in cells exposed to a magnetic field pointing downward through the neuronal growth layer compared with the control group. We confirmed results obtained from the Trypan-blue and automatic cell counting methods with those from the CyQuant and MTS cell viability assays. Our findings could have important implications for the preclinical development of TMS treatments of neurological disorders and represents a new method to control the proliferation rate of neuronal cells.

  7. Establishing diversity in the dopaminergic system.

    PubMed

    Bodea, Gabriela O; Blaess, Sandra

    2015-12-21

    Midbrain dopaminergic neurons (MbDNs) modulate cognitive processes, regulate voluntary movement, and encode reward prediction errors and aversive stimuli. While the degeneration of MbDNs underlies the motor defects in Parkinson's disease, imbalances in dopamine levels are associated with neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression, schizophrenia and substance abuse. In recent years, progress has been made in understanding how MbDNs, which constitute a relatively small neuronal population in the brain, can contribute to such diverse functions and dysfunctions. In particular, important insights have been gained regarding the distinct molecular, neurochemical and network properties of MbDNs. How this diversity of MbDNs is established during brain development is only starting to be unraveled. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on the diversity in MbDN progenitors and differentiated MbDNs in the developing rodent brain. We discuss the signaling pathways, transcription factors and transmembrane receptors that contribute to setting up these diverse MbDN subpopulations. A better insight into the processes that establish diversity in MbDNs will ultimately improve the understanding of the architecture and function of the dopaminergic system in the adult brain. PMID:26431946

  8. Functional glycine receptor maturation in the absence of glycinergic input in dopaminergic neurones of the rat substantia nigra

    PubMed Central

    Mangin, J M; Guyon, A; Eugène, D; Paupardin-Tritsch, D; Legendre, P

    2002-01-01

    The postnatal maturation pattern of glycine receptor channels (GlyRs) expressed by dopaminergic (DA) neurones of the rat substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) was investigated using single-channel and whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in brain slices from rats aged 7–21 postnatal days (P). In neonatal rats (P7-P10), GlyRs exhibited a main conductance state of 100–110 pS with a mean open time of 16 ms. In juvenile rats (P19-P22), both the GlyR main conductance state (46-55 pS) and the mean open time (6.8 ms) were decreased. In neonatal rats, application of 30 μm picrotoxin, which is known to block homomeric GlyRs, strongly reduced glycine-evoked responses, while it was much less effective in juvenile rats. These results suggest that these GlyRs correspond functionally to α2 homomeric GlyRs in neonatal rats and α1/β heteromeric GlyRs in juvenile rats. A drastic but transient decrease in the glycine responsiveness of DA neurones occurred around P17 concomitant to the functional switch from the homomeric state to the heteromeric state. This age corresponds to a maturation phase for DA neurones. The application of 1 μm gabazine blocked spontaneous or evoked inhibitory synaptic current, while the addition of 1 μm strychnine had no effect, suggesting a lack of functional glycinergic synapses on DA neurones. Although it has been proposed that taurine is co-released with GABA at GABAergic synapses on DA neurones, in the present study the stimulation of GABAergic fibres failed to activate GlyRs. Blockade of taurine transporters and applications of high K+ and hyposmotic solutions were also unable to induce any strychnine-sensitive current. We conclude that functional maturation of GlyRs can occur in the absence of any detectable GlyR activation in DA neurones of the SNc. PMID:12154171

  9. Squamosamide derivative FLZ protects dopaminergic neurons against inflammation-mediated neurodegeneration through the inhibition of NADPH oxidase activity

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dan; Hu, Xiaoming; Wei, Sung-Jen; Liu, Jie; Gao, Huiming; Qian, Li; Wilson, Belinda; Liu, Gengtao; Hong, Jau-Shyong

    2008-01-01

    Background Inflammation plays an important role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD) through over-activation of microglia, which consequently causes the excessive production of proinflammatory and neurotoxic factors, and impacts surrounding neurons and eventually induces neurodegeneration. Hence, prevention of microglial over-activation has been shown to be a prime target for the development of therapeutic agents for inflammation-mediated neurodegenerative diseases. Methods For in vitro studies, mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures and reconstituted cultures were used to investigate the molecular mechanism by which FLZ, a squamosamide derivative, mediates anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects in both lipopolysaccharide-(LPS)- and 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium-(MPP+)-mediated models of PD. For in vivo studies, a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine-(MPTP-) induced PD mouse model was used. Results FLZ showed potent efficacy in protecting dopaminergic (DA) neurons against LPS-induced neurotoxicity, as shown in rat and mouse primary mesencephalic neuronal-glial cultures by DA uptake and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunohistochemical results. The neuroprotective effect of FLZ was attributed to a reduction in LPS-induced microglial production of proinflammatory factors such as superoxide, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). Mechanistic studies revealed that the anti-inflammatory properties of FLZ were mediated through inhibition of NADPH oxidase (PHOX), the key microglial superoxide-producing enzyme. A critical role for PHOX in FLZ-elicited neuroprotection was further supported by the findings that 1) FLZ's protective effect was reduced in cultures from PHOX-/- mice, and 2) FLZ inhibited LPS-induced translocation of the cytosolic subunit of p47PHOX to the membrane and thus inhibited the activation of PHOX. The neuroprotective effect of FLZ demonstrated in primary neuronal-glial cultures was further

  10. Effects of location and timing of co-activated neurons in the auditory midbrain on cortical activity: implications for a new central auditory prosthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Straka, Małgorzata M.; McMahon, Melissa; Markovitz, Craig D.; Lim, Hubert H.

    2014-08-01

    Objective. An increasing number of deaf individuals are being implanted with central auditory prostheses, but their performance has generally been poorer than for cochlear implant users. The goal of this study is to investigate stimulation strategies for improving hearing performance with a new auditory midbrain implant (AMI). Previous studies have shown that repeated electrical stimulation of a single site in each isofrequency lamina of the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICC) causes strong suppressive effects in elicited responses within the primary auditory cortex (A1). Here we investigate if improved cortical activity can be achieved by co-activating neurons with different timing and locations across an ICC lamina and if this cortical activity varies across A1. Approach. We electrically stimulated two sites at different locations across an isofrequency ICC lamina using varying delays in ketamine-anesthetized guinea pigs. We recorded and analyzed spike activity and local field potentials across different layers and locations of A1. Results. Co-activating two sites within an isofrequency lamina with short inter-pulse intervals (<5 ms) could elicit cortical activity that is enhanced beyond a linear summation of activity elicited by the individual sites. A significantly greater extent of normalized cortical activity was observed for stimulation of the rostral-lateral region of an ICC lamina compared to the caudal-medial region. We did not identify any location trends across A1, but the most cortical enhancement was observed in supragranular layers, suggesting further integration of the stimuli through the cortical layers. Significance. The topographic organization identified by this study provides further evidence for the presence of functional zones across an ICC lamina with locations consistent with those identified by previous studies. Clinically, these results suggest that co-activating different neural populations in the rostral-lateral ICC rather

  11. HIV-1 Tat and cocaine mediated synaptopathy in cortical and midbrain neurons is prevented by the isoflavone Equol

    PubMed Central

    Bertrand, Sarah J.; Hu, Calvin; Aksenova, Marina V.; Mactutus, Charles F.; Booze, Rosemarie M.

    2015-01-01

    Illicit drugs, such as cocaine, are known to increase the likelihood and severity of HIV-1 associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). In the current studies synaptic integrity was assessed following exposure to low concentrations of the HIV-1 viral protein Tat 1-86B, with or without cocaine, by quantifying filamentous actin (F-actin) rich structures (i.e., puncta and dendritic spines) on neuronal dendrites in vitro. In addition, the synapse-protective effects of either R-Equol (RE) or S-Equol (SE; derivatives of the soy isoflavone, daidzein) were determined. Individually, neither low concentrations of HIV-1 Tat (10 nM) nor low concentrations of cocaine (1.6 μM) had any significant effect on F-actin puncta number; however, the same low concentrations of HIV-1 Tat + cocaine in combination significantly reduced dendritic synapses. This synaptic reduction was prevented by pre-treatment with either RE or SE, in an estrogen receptor beta dependent manner. In sum, targeted therapeutic intervention with SE may prevent HIV-1 + drug abuse synaptopathy, and thereby potentially influence the development of HAND. PMID:26441850

  12. Targeting of serotonin 1A receptors to dopaminergic neurons within the parabrachial subdivision of the ventral tegmental area in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Doherty, M D; Pickel, V M

    2001-05-01

    Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) modulates dopamine-related cognitive functions and motor activity through activation of selective receptor subtypes including 5-HT1A. Potential targets for these 5-HT1A-mediated actions of 5-HT include mesocortical and mesolimbic dopaminergic neurons having partially segregated distribution in the parabrachial and paranigral subdivisions of the ventral tegmental area (VTA), respectively. We therefore examined the ultrastructural immunocytochemical localization of the 5-HT1A receptor in the parabrachial (VTApb) and paranigral (VTApn) subdivisions of rat VTA, to determine 1) the functional sites for receptor activation, and 2) the cellular associations between this receptor and dopaminergic neurons identified by their tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) content. In each region, 5-HT1A immunoreactivity was mainly observed in somatodendritic profiles, but it was also present in small unmyelinated axons and in a few axon terminals and glia, suggesting a role for 5-HT1A receptors in presynaptic and glial functions, as well as postsynaptic neuronal activation, in VTA. In somatodendritic profiles, 5-HT1A gold particles were mainly localized to tubulovesicles presumed to be smooth endoplasmic reticulum. In addition, however, in distal dendrites receiving multiple inputs the receptor was targeted to selective postsynaptic junctions, or more randomly distributed on nonsynaptic portions of the plasma membrane. Of the 5-HT1A-labeled dendrites, 64% in VTApb and 44% in VTApn contained TH. These findings suggest a reserve of cytoplasmic 5-HT1A receptors that are mobilized to functional postsynaptic sites on the plasma membrane by afferent input to distal dendrites in the VTA. They also indicate that 5-HT1A activation may affect a larger population of dopaminergic neurons in VTApb compared with VTApn, thus having a potentially greater impact on cognitive functions modulated by mesocortical dopaminergic neurons. PMID:11298363

  13. Dopaminergic Modulation of the Voltage-Gated Sodium Current in the Cochlear Afferent Neurons of the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Valdés-Baizabal, Catalina; Soto, Enrique; Vega, Rosario

    2015-01-01

    The cochlear inner hair cells synapse onto type I afferent terminal dendrites, constituting the main afferent pathway for auditory information flow. This pathway receives central control input from the lateral olivocochlear efferent neurons that release various neurotransmitters, among which dopamine (DA) plays a salient role. DA receptors activation exert a protective role in the over activation of the afferent glutamatergic synapses, which occurs when an animal is exposed to intense sound stimuli or during hypoxic events. However, the mechanism of action of DA at the cellular level is still not completely understood. In this work, we studied the actions of DA and its receptor agonists and antagonists on the voltage-gated sodium current (INa) in isolated cochlear afferent neurons of the rat to define the mechanisms of dopaminergic control of the afferent input in the cochlear pathway. Experiments were performed using the voltage and current clamp techniques in the whole-cell configuration in primary cultures of cochlear spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). Recordings of the INa showed that DA receptor activation induced a significant inhibition of the peak current amplitude, leading to a significant decrease in cell excitability. Inhibition of the INa was produced by a phosphorylation of the sodium channels as shown by the use of phosphatase inhibitor that produced an inhibition analogous to that caused by DA receptor activation. Use of specific agonists and antagonists showed that inhibitory action of DA was mediated both by activation of D1- and D2-like DA receptors. The action of the D1- and D2-like receptors was shown to be mediated by a Gαs/AC/cAMP/PKA and Gαq/PLC/PKC pathways respectively. These results showed that DA receptor activation constitutes a significant modulatory input to SGNs, effectively modulating their excitability and information flow in the auditory pathway. PMID:25768433

  14. 1-Methyl-4-phenylpyridinium-induced alterations of glutathione status in immortalized rat dopaminergic neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Drechsel, Derek A.; Liang, L.-P.; Patel, Manisha . E-mail: manisha.patel@uchsc.edu

    2007-05-01

    Decreased glutathione levels associated with increased oxidative stress are a hallmark of numerous neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease. GSH is an important molecule that serves as an anti-oxidant and is also a major determinant of cellular redox environment. Previous studies have demonstrated that neurotoxins can cause changes in reduced and oxidized GSH levels; however, information regarding steady state levels remains unexplored. The goal of this study was to characterize changes in cellular GSH levels and its regulatory enzymes in a dopaminergic cell line (N27) following treatment with the Parkinsonian toxin, 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP{sup +}). Cellular GSH levels were initially significantly decreased 12 h after treatment, but subsequently recovered to values greater than controls by 24 h. However, oxidized glutathione (GSSG) levels were increased 24 h following treatment, concomitant with a decrease in GSH/GSSG ratio prior to cell death. In accordance with these changes, ROS levels were also increased, confirming the presence of oxidative stress. Decreased enzymatic activities of glutathione reductase and glutamate-cysteine ligase by 20-25% were observed at early time points and partly account for changes in GSH levels after MPP{sup +} exposure. Additionally, glutathione peroxidase activity was increased 24 h following treatment. MPP{sup +} treatment was not associated with increased efflux of glutathione to the medium. These data further elucidate the mechanisms underlying GSH depletion in response to the Parkinsonian toxin, MPP{sup +}.

  15. Activation of Midbrain Structures by Associative Novelty and the Formation of Explicit Memory in Humans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schott, Bjorn H.; Sellner, Daniela B.; Lauer, Corinna-J.; Habib, Reza; Frey, Julietta U.; Guderian, Sebastian; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Duzel, Emrah

    2004-01-01

    Recent evidence suggests a close functional relationship between memory formation in the hippocampus and dopaminergic neuromodulation originating in the ventral tegmental area and medial substantia nigra of the midbrain. Here we report midbrain activation in two functional MRI studies of visual memory in healthy young adults. In the first study,…

  16. Dopamine as a potent inducer of cellular glutathione and NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 in PC12 neuronal cells: a potential adaptive mechanism for dopaminergic neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Jia, Zhenquan; Zhu, Hong; Misra, Bhaba R; Li, Yunbo; Misra, Hara P

    2008-11-01

    Dopamine auto-oxidation and the consequent formation of reactive oxygen species and electrophilic quinone molecules have been implicated in dopaminergic neuronal cell death in Parkinson's disease. We reported here that in PC12 dopaminergic neuronal cells dopamine at noncytotoxic concentrations (50-150 muM) potently induced cellular glutathione (GSH) and the phase 2 enzyme NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1), two critical cellular defenses in detoxification of ROS and electrophilic quinone molecules. Incubation of PC12 cells with dopamine also led to a marked increase in the mRNA levels for gamma-glutamylcysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC) and NQO1. In addition, treatment of PC12 cells with dopamine resulted in a significant elevation of GSH content in the mitochondrial compartment. To determine whether treatment with dopamine at noncytotoxic concentrations, which upregulated the cellular defenses could protect the neuronal cells against subsequent lethal oxidative and electrophilic injury, PC12 cells were pretreated with dopamine (150 muM) for 24 h and then exposed to various cytotoxic concentrations of dopamine or 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). We found that pretreatment of PC12 cells with dopamine at a noncytotoxic concentration led to a remarkable protection against cytotoxicity caused by dopamine or 6-OHDA at lethal concentrations, as detected by 3-[4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl]-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium reduction assay. In view of the critical roles of GSH and NQO1 in protecting against dopaminergic neuron degeneration, the above findings implicate that upregulation of both GSH and NQO1 by dopamine at noncytotoxic concentrations may serve as an important adaptive mechanism for dopaminergic neuroprotection. PMID:18368484

  17. Neural ablation of the PARK10 candidate Plpp3 leads to dopaminergic transmission deficits without neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Gómez-López, Sandra; Martínez-Silva, Ana Valeria; Montiel, Teresa; Osorio-Gómez, Daniel; Bermúdez-Rattoni, Federico; Massieu, Lourdes; Escalante-Alcalde, Diana

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a multifactorial neurodegenerative disorder, characterised by the progressive loss of midbrain dopaminergic neurons and a variety of motor symptoms. The gene coding for the phospholipid phosphatase 3, PLPP3 (formerly PPAP2B or LPP3), maps within the PARK10 locus, a region that has been linked with increased risk to late-onset PD. PLPP3 modulates the levels of a range of bioactive lipids controlling fundamental cellular processes within the central nervous system. Here we show that PLPP3 is enriched in astroglial cells of the adult murine ventral midbrain. Conditional inactivation of Plpp3 using a Nestin::Cre driver results in reduced mesencephalic levels of sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 1 (S1P1), a well-known mediator of pro-survival responses. Yet, adult PLPP3-deficient mice exhibited no alterations in the number of dopaminergic neurons or in the basal levels of striatal extracellular dopamine (DA). Potassium-evoked DA overflow in the striatum, however, was significantly decreased in mutant mice. Locomotor evaluation revealed that, although PLPP3-deficient mice exhibit motor impairment, this is not progressive or responsive to acute L-DOPA therapy. These findings suggest that disruption of Plpp3 during early neural development leads to dopaminergic transmission deficits in the absence of nigrostriatal degeneration, and without causing an age-related locomotor decline consistent with PD. PMID:27063549

  18. Neural ablation of the PARK10 candidate Plpp3 leads to dopaminergic transmission deficits without neurodegeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gómez-López, Sandra; Martínez-Silva, Ana Valeria; Montiel, Teresa; Osorio-Gómez, Daniel; Bermúdez-Rattoni, Federico; Massieu, Lourdes; Escalante-Alcalde, Diana

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a multifactorial neurodegenerative disorder, characterised by the progressive loss of midbrain dopaminergic neurons and a variety of motor symptoms. The gene coding for the phospholipid phosphatase 3, PLPP3 (formerly PPAP2B or LPP3), maps within the PARK10 locus, a region that has been linked with increased risk to late-onset PD. PLPP3 modulates the levels of a range of bioactive lipids controlling fundamental cellular processes within the central nervous system. Here we show that PLPP3 is enriched in astroglial cells of the adult murine ventral midbrain. Conditional inactivation of Plpp3 using a Nestin::Cre driver results in reduced mesencephalic levels of sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 1 (S1P1), a well-known mediator of pro-survival responses. Yet, adult PLPP3-deficient mice exhibited no alterations in the number of dopaminergic neurons or in the basal levels of striatal extracellular dopamine (DA). Potassium-evoked DA overflow in the striatum, however, was significantly decreased in mutant mice. Locomotor evaluation revealed that, although PLPP3-deficient mice exhibit motor impairment, this is not progressive or responsive to acute L-DOPA therapy. These findings suggest that disruption of Plpp3 during early neural development leads to dopaminergic transmission deficits in the absence of nigrostriatal degeneration, and without causing an age-related locomotor decline consistent with PD. PMID:27063549

  19. Potential environmental neurotoxins related to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium: Selective toxicity of 1-methyl-4-(4'-acetamidophenyl)-pyridinium and 1-methyl-4-cyclohexylpyridinium for dopaminergic neurons in culture

    SciTech Connect

    Michel, P.P.; Dandapani, B.K.; Efange, S.M.; Hefti, F. )

    1990-05-01

    Mesencephalic cells in culture were exposed to various compounds which we hypothesized to be selective toxins for dopaminergic neurons. The culture system was previously shown suitable for assessing selective dopaminergic neurotoxicity, since 1-methyl-4-phenyl-pyridinium (MPP+), the active metabolite of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridinium, destroyed dopaminergic neurons without affecting other cells. Some compounds tested were selected to fulfill two criteria believed to underly the selective dopaminergic neurotoxicity of MPP+, i.e., to be a potential substrate for the uptake carrier for dopamine and to possess a strong delocalized positive charge to inhibit the mitochondrial respiratory system. Other compounds were chosen on the basis of clinical or anecdotal evidence linking them to Parkinson's disease. Among the tested compounds two pyridinium analogs, 1-methyl-4-(4'-acetamidophenyl)pyridinium (MACPP+) and 1-methyl-4-cyclohexylpyridinium (MCP+) were found to be selectively toxic toward dopaminergic neurons. Incubation of cultures with both MACPP+ and MCP+ produced a dramatic reduction in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive cells and the uptake of (3H)dopamine without reducing the number of cells visualized by phase-contrast microscopy or the uptake of (3H)aminobutyric acid. Besides MACPP+ and MCP+ none of the tested compounds exhibited any selective dopaminergic neurotoxicity. Together with earlier findings, these data suggest that the structural requirements are rather strict for a chemical to be a selective dopaminergic neurotoxin and make it unlikely that there is a wide spectrum of environmental dopaminergic toxins.

  20. Dorsal striatal-midbrain connectivity in humans predicts how reinforcements are used to guide decisions.

    PubMed

    Kahnt, Thorsten; Park, Soyoung Q; Cohen, Michael X; Beck, Anne; Heinz, Andreas; Wrase, Jana

    2009-07-01

    It has been suggested that the target areas of dopaminergic midbrain neurons, the dorsal (DS) and ventral striatum (VS), are differently involved in reinforcement learning especially as actor and critic. Whereas the critic learns to predict rewards, the actor maintains action values to guide future decisions. The different midbrain connections to the DS and the VS seem to play a critical role in this functional distinction. Here, subjects performed a dynamic, reward-based decision-making task during fMRI acquisition. A computational model of reinforcement learning was used to estimate the different effects of positive and negative reinforcements on future decisions for each subject individually. We found that activity in both the DS and the VS correlated with reward prediction errors. Using functional connectivity, we show that the DS and the VS are differentially connected to different midbrain regions (possibly corresponding to the substantia nigra [SN] and the ventral tegmental area [VTA], respectively). However, only functional connectivity between the DS and the putative SN predicted the impact of different reinforcement types on future behavior. These results suggest that connections between the putative SN and the DS are critical for modulating action values in the DS according to both positive and negative reinforcements to guide future decision making. PMID:18752410

  1. The importance of A9 dopaminergic neurons in mediating the functional benefits of fetal ventral mesencephalon transplants and levodopa-induced dyskinesias.

    PubMed

    Kuan, Wei-Li; Lin, Rachel; Tyers, Pam; Barker, Roger A

    2007-03-01

    Intrastriatal transplantation of fetal ventral mesencephalon (VM) tissue provides the potential to alleviate motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) and levodopa-induced dyskinesia (LID). However, the degree of recovery varies among individuals with an incidence of "off-phase", graft-induced dyskinesia (GID) in some patients. We hypothesised that this variability is due to the heterogeneous nature of dopaminergic neurons in the transplant. We therefore investigated this in the unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rat model of PD. These animals were primed to develop LID and then transplanted with fetal VM into the caudal aspects of the striatum. No GID was observed but in a significant number of animals the transplants ameliorated LID. There was a correlation between the degree of behavioural and LID recovery with the number of A9 dopaminergic neurons in the transplant, based on their expression of a G-protein-coupled inward rectifying current potassium channel (Girk2). Furthermore, we showed that LID development is related to an abnormal expression profile of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) and dopamine- and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein of 32 kDa (DARPP-32) in the striatum and that intrastriatal VM transplants normalised both Cdk5 expression and DARPP-32 phosphorylation in animals exhibiting functional improvement. These results suggest that an A9 dopaminergic neuron-enriched transplant may be the key to an effective PD cell replacement therapy through normalisation of the altered striatal expression of Cdk5/DARPP-32. PMID:17188499

  2. Effects of Two Commonly Found Strains of Influenza A Virus on Developing Dopaminergic Neurons, in Relation to the Pathophysiology of Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Landreau, Fernando; Galeano, Pablo; Caltana, Laura R.; Masciotra, Luis; Chertcoff, Agustín; Pontoriero, A.; Baumeister, Elsa; Amoroso, Marcela; Brusco, Herminia A.; Tous, Mónica I.; Savy, Vilma L.; Lores Arnaiz, María del Rosario; de Erausquin, Gabriel A.

    2012-01-01

    Influenza virus (InfV) infection during pregnancy is a known risk factor for neurodevelopment abnormalities in the offspring, including the risk of schizophrenia, and has been shown to result in an abnormal behavioral phenotype in mice. However, previous reports have concentrated on neuroadapted influenza strains, whereas increased schizophrenia risk is associated with common respiratory InfV. In addition, no specific mechanism has been proposed for the actions of maternal infection on the developing brain that could account for schizophrenia risk. We identified two common isolates from the community with antigenic configurations H3N2 and H1N1 and compared their effects on developing brain with a mouse modified-strain A/WSN/33 specifically on the developing of dopaminergic neurons. We found that H1N1 InfV have high affinity for dopaminergic neurons in vitro, leading to nuclear factor kappa B activation and apoptosis. Furthermore, prenatal infection of mothers with the same strains results in loss of dopaminergic neurons in the offspring, and in an abnormal behavioral phenotype. We propose that the well-known contribution of InfV to risk of schizophrenia during development may involve a similar specific mechanism and discuss evidence from the literature in relation to this hypothesis. PMID:23251423

  3. Effects of two commonly found strains of influenza A virus on developing dopaminergic neurons, in relation to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Landreau, Fernando; Galeano, Pablo; Caltana, Laura R; Masciotra, Luis; Chertcoff, Agustín; Pontoriero, A; Baumeister, Elsa; Amoroso, Marcela; Brusco, Herminia A; Tous, Mónica I; Savy, Vilma L; Lores Arnaiz, María del Rosario; de Erausquin, Gabriel A

    2012-01-01

    Influenza virus (InfV) infection during pregnancy is a known risk factor for neurodevelopment abnormalities in the offspring, including the risk of schizophrenia, and has been shown to result in an abnormal behavioral phenotype in mice. However, previous reports have concentrated on neuroadapted influenza strains, whereas increased schizophrenia risk is associated with common respiratory InfV. In addition, no specific mechanism has been proposed for the actions of maternal infection on the developing brain that could account for schizophrenia risk. We identified two common isolates from the community with antigenic configurations H3N2 and H1N1 and compared their effects on developing brain with a mouse modified-strain A/WSN/33 specifically on the developing of dopaminergic neurons. We found that H1N1 InfV have high affinity for dopaminergic neurons in vitro, leading to nuclear factor kappa B activation and apoptosis. Furthermore, prenatal infection of mothers with the same strains results in loss of dopaminergic neurons in the offspring, and in an abnormal behavioral phenotype. We propose that the well-known contribution of InfV to risk of schizophrenia during development may involve a similar specific mechanism and discuss evidence from the literature in relation to this hypothesis. PMID:23251423

  4. Synaptic Input of ON-Bipolar Cells onto the Dopaminergic Neurons of the Mouse Retina

    PubMed Central

    Contini, Massimo; Lin, Bin; Kobayashi, Kazuto; Okano, Hideyuki; Masland, Richard H.; Raviola, Elio

    2010-01-01

    In the retina, dopamine fulfills a crucial role in neural adaptation to photopic illumination, but the pathway that carries cone signals to the dopaminergic amacrine (DA) cells was not known. We identified the site of ON-cone bipolar input onto DA cells in transgenic mice in which both types of catecholaminergic amacrine (CA) cells were labeled with green fluorescent protein or human placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP). In confocal Z series of retinal whole mounts stained with antibodies to tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), DA cells gave rise to varicose processes that descended obliquely through the scleral half of the inner plexiform layer (IPL) and formed a loose, tangential plexus in the middle of this layer. Comparison with the distribution of the dendrites of type 2 CA cells and examination of neurobiotin-injected DA cells proved that their vitreal processes were situated in stratum S3 of the IPL. Electron microscope demonstration of PLAP activity showed that bipolar cell endings in S3 established ribbon synapses onto a postsynaptic dyad in which one or both processes were labeled by a precipitate of lead phosphate and therefore belonged to DA cells. In places, the postsynaptic DA cell processes returned a reciprocal synapse onto the bipolar endings. Confocal images of sections stained with antibodies to TH, kinesin Kif3a, which labels synaptic ribbons, and glutamate or GABAA receptors, confirmed that ribbon-containing endings made glutamatergic synapses onto DA cells processes in S3 and received from them GABAergic synapses. The presynaptic ON-bipolar cells most likely belonged to the CB3 (type 5) variety. PMID:20394057

  5. Cucurbitacin E Has Neuroprotective Properties and Autophagic Modulating Activities on Dopaminergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Longpré, Fanny; Bournival, Julie; Tremblay, Cindy; Haskova, Pavlina; Attard, Everaldo; Martinoli, Maria-Grazia

    2014-01-01

    Natural molecules are under intensive study for their potential as preventive and/or adjuvant therapies for neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease (PD). We evaluated the neuroprotective potential of cucurbitacin E (CuE), a tetracyclic triterpenoid phytosterol extracted from the Ecballium elaterium (Cucurbitaceae), using a known cellular model of PD, NGF-differentiated PC12. In our postmitotic experimental paradigm, neuronal cells were treated with the parkinsonian toxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) to provoke significant cellular damage and apoptosis or with the potent N,N-diethyldithiocarbamate (DDC) to induce superoxide (O2•−) production, and CuE was administered prior to and during the neurotoxic treatment. We measured cellular death and reactive oxygen species to evaluate the antioxidant and antiapoptotic properties of CuE. In addition, we analyzed cellular macroautophagy, a bulk degradation process involving the lysosomal pathway. CuE showed neuroprotective effects on MPP+-induced cell death. However, CuE failed to rescue neuronal cells from oxidative stress induced by MPP+ or DDC. Microscopy and western blot data show an intriguing involvement of CuE in maintaining lysosomal distribution and decreasing autophagy flux. Altogether, these data indicate that CuE decreases neuronal death and autophagic flux in a postmitotic cellular model of PD. PMID:25574337

  6. Dopamine neurons control striatal cholinergic neurons via regionally heterogeneous dopamine and glutamate signaling

    PubMed Central

    Chuhma, Nao; Mingote, Susana; Moore, Holly; Rayport, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Summary Midbrain dopamine neurons fire in bursts conveying salient information. Bursts are associated with pauses in tonic firing of striatal cholinergic interneurons. While the reciprocal balance of dopamine and acetylcholine in the striatum is well known, how dopamine neurons control cholinergic neurons has not been elucidated. Here we show that dopamine neurons make direct fast dopaminergic and glutamatergic connections with cholinergic interneurons, with regional heterogeneity. Dopamine neurons drive a burst-pause firing sequence in cholinergic interneurons in the medial shell of the nucleus accumbens, mixed actions in the accumbens core, and a pause in the dorsal striatum. This heterogeneity is due mainly to regional variation in dopamine-neuron glutamate cotransmission. A single dose of amphetamine attenuates dopamine neuron connections to cholinergic interneurons with dose-dependent regional specificity. Overall, the present data indicate that dopamine neurons control striatal circuit function via discrete, plastic connections with cholinergic interneurons. PMID:24559678

  7. Dopaminergic Neurodegeneration in the Mouse Is Associated with Decrease of Viscoelasticity of Substantia Nigra Tissue

    PubMed Central

    Hain, Elisabeth G.; Klein, Charlotte; Munder, Tonia; Braun, Juergen; Riek, Kerstin; Mueller, Susanne; Sack, Ingolf; Steiner, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    The biomechanical properties of brain tissue are altered by histopathological changes due to neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's disease (PD). Such alterations can be measured by magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) as a non-invasive technique to determine viscoelastic parameters of the brain. Until now, the correlation between histopathological mechanisms and observed alterations in tissue viscoelasticity in neurodegenerative diseases is still not completely understood. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate (1) the validity of MRE to detect viscoelastic changes in small and specific brain regions: the substantia nigra (SN), midbrain and hippocampus in a mouse model of PD, and (2) if the induced dopaminergic neurodegeneration and inflammation in the SN is reflected by local changes in viscoelasticity. Therefore, MRE measurements of the SN, midbrain and hippocampus were performed in adult female mice before and at five time points after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridin hydrochloride (MPTP) treatment specifically lesioning dopaminergic neurons in the SN. At each time point, additional mice were utilized for histological analysis of the SN. After treatment cessation, we observed opposed viscoelastic changes in the midbrain, hippocampus and SN with the midbrain showing a gradual rise and the hippocampus a distinct transient increase of viscous and elastic parameters, while viscosity and–to a lesser extent—elasticity in the SN decreased over time. The decrease in viscosity and elasticity in the SN was paralleled by a reduced number of neurons due to the MPTP-induced neurodegeneration. In conclusion, MRE is highly sensitive to detect local viscoelastic changes in specific and even small brain regions. Moreover, we confirmed that neuronal cells likely constitute the backbone of the adult brain mainly accounting for its viscoelasticity. Therefore, MRE could be established as a new potential instrument for clinical evaluation and

  8. Dopaminergic Neurodegeneration in the Mouse Is Associated with Decrease of Viscoelasticity of Substantia Nigra Tissue.

    PubMed

    Hain, Elisabeth G; Klein, Charlotte; Munder, Tonia; Braun, Juergen; Riek, Kerstin; Mueller, Susanne; Sack, Ingolf; Steiner, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    The biomechanical properties of brain tissue are altered by histopathological changes due to neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's disease (PD). Such alterations can be measured by magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) as a non-invasive technique to determine viscoelastic parameters of the brain. Until now, the correlation between histopathological mechanisms and observed alterations in tissue viscoelasticity in neurodegenerative diseases is still not completely understood. Thus, the objective of this study was to evaluate (1) the validity of MRE to detect viscoelastic changes in small and specific brain regions: the substantia nigra (SN), midbrain and hippocampus in a mouse model of PD, and (2) if the induced dopaminergic neurodegeneration and inflammation in the SN is reflected by local changes in viscoelasticity. Therefore, MRE measurements of the SN, midbrain and hippocampus were performed in adult female mice before and at five time points after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridin hydrochloride (MPTP) treatment specifically lesioning dopaminergic neurons in the SN. At each time point, additional mice were utilized for histological analysis of the SN. After treatment cessation, we observed opposed viscoelastic changes in the midbrain, hippocampus and SN with the midbrain showing a gradual rise and the hippocampus a distinct transient increase of viscous and elastic parameters, while viscosity and-to a lesser extent-elasticity in the SN decreased over time. The decrease in viscosity and elasticity in the SN was paralleled by a reduced number of neurons due to the MPTP-induced neurodegeneration. In conclusion, MRE is highly sensitive to detect local viscoelastic changes in specific and even small brain regions. Moreover, we confirmed that neuronal cells likely constitute the backbone of the adult brain mainly accounting for its viscoelasticity. Therefore, MRE could be established as a new potential instrument for clinical evaluation and diagnostics

  9. Neutralization of RANTES and Eotaxin Prevents the Loss of Dopaminergic Neurons in a Mouse Model of Parkinson Disease.

    PubMed

    Chandra, Goutam; Rangasamy, Suresh B; Roy, Avik; Kordower, Jeffrey H; Pahan, Kalipada

    2016-07-15

    Parkinson disease (PD) is second only to Alzheimer disease as the most common human neurodegenerative disorder. Despite intense investigation, no interdictive therapy is available for PD. Recent studies indicate that both innate and adaptive immune processes are active in PD. Accordingly, we found a rapid increase in RANTES (regulated on activation normal T cell expressed and secreted) and eotaxin, chemokines that are involved in T cell trafficking, in vivo in the substantia nigra pars compacta and the serum of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-intoxicated mice. RANTES and eotaxin were also up-regulated in the substantia nigra pars compacta of post-mortem PD brains as compared with age-matched controls. Therefore, we investigated whether neutralization of RANTES and eotaxin could protect against nigrostriatal degeneration in MPTP-intoxicated mice. Interestingly, after peripheral administration, functional blocking antibodies against RANTES and eotaxin reduced the infiltration of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells into the nigra, attenuated nigral expression of proinflammatory molecules, and suppressed nigral activation of glial cells. These findings paralleled dopaminergic neuronal protection, normalized striatal neurotransmitters, and improved motor functions in MPTP-intoxicated mice. Therefore, we conclude that attenuation of the chemokine-dependent adaptive immune response may be of therapeutic benefit for PD patients. PMID:27226559

  10. Requirement of a dopaminergic neuronal phenotype for toxicity of low concentrations of 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium to human cells.

    PubMed

    Schildknecht, Stefan; Pöltl, Dominik; Nagel, Daniel M; Matt, Florian; Scholz, Diana; Lotharius, Julie; Schmieg, Nathalie; Salvo-Vargas, Alberto; Leist, Marcel

    2009-11-15

    LUHMES cells are conditionally-immortalized non-transformed human fetal cells that can be differentiated to acquire a dopaminergic neuron-like phenotype under appropriate growth conditions. After differentiation by GDNF and cyclic adenosine monophosphate, LUHMES were sensitive to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+)) toxicity at < or =5 microM, but resistant to the parental compound 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). The high homogeneity and purity of the cultures allowed the detection of metabolic changes during the degeneration. Cellular ATP dropped in two phases after 24 and 48 h; cellular glutathione (GSH) decreased continuously, paralleled by an increase in lipid peroxidation. These events were accompanied by a time-dependent degeneration of neurites. Block of the dopamine transporter by GBR 12909 or mazindol completely abrogated MPP(+) toxicity. Inhibition of de novo dopamine synthesis by alpha-methyl-l-tyrosine or 3-iodo-l-tyrosine attenuated toxicity, but did not reduce the initial drop in ATP. Inhibition of mixed lineage kinases by CEP1347 completely prevented the MPP(+)-induced loss of viability and intracellular GSH, but failed to attenuate the initial drop of ATP. For the quantitative assessment of neurite degeneration, an automated imaging-based high content screening approach was applied and confirmed the findings made by pharmacological interventions in this study. Our data indicate that inhibition of mitochondrial ATP synthesis is not sufficient to trigger cell death in MPP(+)-treated LUHMES. PMID:19647008

  11. Requirement of a dopaminergic neuronal phenotype for toxicity of low concentrations of 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium to human cells

    SciTech Connect

    Schildknecht, Stefan; Poeltl, Dominik; Nagel, Daniel M.; Matt, Florian; Scholz, Diana; Lotharius, Julie; Schmieg, Nathalie; Salvo-Vargas, Alberto; Leist, Marcel

    2009-11-15

    LUHMES cells are conditionally-immortalized non-transformed human fetal cells that can be differentiated to acquire a dopaminergic neuron-like phenotype under appropriate growth conditions. After differentiation by GDNF and cyclic adenosine monophosphate, LUHMES were sensitive to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP{sup +}) toxicity at <= 5 muM, but resistant to the parental compound 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). The high homogeneity and purity of the cultures allowed the detection of metabolic changes during the degeneration. Cellular ATP dropped in two phases after 24 and 48 h; cellular glutathione (GSH) decreased continuously, paralleled by an increase in lipid peroxidation. These events were accompanied by a time-dependent degeneration of neurites. Block of the dopamine transporter by GBR 12909 or mazindol completely abrogated MPP{sup +} toxicity. Inhibition of de novo dopamine synthesis by alpha-methyl-L-tyrosine or 3-iodo-L-tyrosine attenuated toxicity, but did not reduce the initial drop in ATP. Inhibition of mixed lineage kinases by CEP1347 completely prevented the MPP{sup +}-induced loss of viability and intracellular GSH, but failed to attenuate the initial drop of ATP. For the quantitative assessment of neurite degeneration, an automated imaging-based high content screening approach was applied and confirmed the findings made by pharmacological interventions in this study. Our data indicate that inhibition of mitochondrial ATP synthesis is not sufficient to trigger cell death in MPP{sup +}-treated LUHMES.

  12. Adolescent Intermittent Ethanol Exposure Is Associated with Increased Risky Choice and Decreased Dopaminergic and Cholinergic Neuron Markers in Adult Rats

    PubMed Central

    Boutros, Nathalie; Semenova, Svetlana; Liu, Wen; Crews, Fulton T.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Binge drinking is prevalent during adolescence and may have effects on the adult brain and behavior. The present study investigated whether adolescent intermittent ethanol exposure alters adult risky choice and prefrontal dopaminergic and forebrain cholinergic neuronal marker levels in male Wistar rats. Methods: Adolescent (postnatal day 28–53) rats were administered 5g/kg of 25% (vol/vol) ethanol 3 times/d in a 2-days–on/2-days–off exposure pattern. In adulthood, risky choice was assessed in the probability discounting task with descending and ascending series of large reward probabilities and after acute ethanol challenge. Immunohistochemical analyses assessed tyrosine hydroxylase, a marker of dopamine and norepinephrine in the prelimbic and infralimbic cortices, and choline acetyltransferase, a marker of cholinergic neurons, in the basal forebrain. Results: All of the rats preferred the large reward when it was delivered with high probability. When the large reward became unlikely, control rats preferred the smaller, safe reward, whereas adolescent intermittent ethanol-exposed rats continued to prefer the risky alternative. Acute ethanol had no effect on risky choice in either group of rats. Tyrosine hydroxylase (prelimbic cortex only) and choline acetyltransferase immunoreactivity levels were decreased in adolescent intermittent ethanol-exposed rats compared with controls. Risky choice was negatively correlated with choline acetyltransferase, implicating decreased forebrain cholinergic activity in risky choice. Conclusions: The decreases in tyrosine hydroxylase and choline acetyltransferase immunoreactivity suggest that adolescent intermittent ethanol exposure has enduring neural effects that may lead to altered adult behaviors, such as increased risky decision making. In humans, increased risky decision making could lead to maladaptive, potentially harmful consequences. PMID:25612895

  13. Oxidative stress regulated genes in nigral dopaminergic neuronal cells: correlation with the known pathology in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Myung S; Chun, Hong S; Son, Jessica J; DeGiorgio, Lorraine A; Kim, Dae J; Peng, Chu; Son, Jin H

    2003-01-31

    Oxidative stress (OS) is a primary pathogenic mechanism of nigral dopaminergic (DA) cell death in Parkinson's disease (PD). Oxidative damage, Lewy body formation and decreased mitochondrial complex I activity are the consistent pathological findings in PD. In nigral DA neurons, however, it is unknown whether any gene expressional changes induced by OS contribute to the typical PD pathology. Here, using microarray analysis, we identified several groups of genes in the nigral DA cell line, SN4741 [J. Neurosci. 19 (1999) 10; J. Neurochem. 76 (2001) 1010], that were regulated by OS. Approximately 36 significantly regulated genes that encode functional molecules of nuclear subunits of mitochondrial complex I, exocytosis and membrane trafficking proteins, markers for OS and oxidoreductases, regulatory molecules of apoptosis and unidentified EST clones were further analysed. OS modulated the expression of specific genes, of which physiological dysfunctions have been implicated in PD. For instance, the expression of the nuclear-encoded subunits of mitochondrial complex I, B8 and B17, were significantly down-regulated by OS, possibly contributing to selective defect in mitochondrial complex I activity in PD. Furthermore, syntaxin 8 and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) are most dramatically up-regulated by OS in DA cells. Syntaxin 8 is a SNARE protein, regulating lipid vesicle docking and fusion as well as early endosome membrane recycling. Lipid membranes are significantly oxidative-damaged in PD. HO-1 is an important cytoplasmic constituent of Lewy bodies, a pathological hallmark of idiopathic PD. Thus, our findings provide novel molecular probes that may be useful in unraveling the molecular mechanism(s) of OS-induced pathogenesis in PD. Further functional characterization of the affected genes including ESTs can help elucidate the underlying molecular pathology as well as develop biomarkers for monitoring degenerating DA neurons in PD. PMID:12573535

  14. Efficient generation of dopaminergic-like neurons by overexpression of Nurr1 and Pitx3 in mouse induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Salemi, Salemeh; Baktash, Parvaneh; Rajaei, Bahareh; Noori, Mehri; Amini, Hossein; Shamsara, Mehdi; Massumi, Mohammad

    2016-07-28

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder, in which the nigro-striatal Dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons are selectively lost. Treatment of neurodegenerative diseases with Pluripotent Stem Cells (PSCs) is a big interest in cell therapy. Here, we used induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs) expressing two master Dopaminergic (DAergic) transcription factors, i.e. Nurr1 and Pitx3, to generate functional in vitro DAergic-like neurons. After establishment and characterization of Doxycycline-inducible iPSCs from mouse fibroblasts, the cells were transduced by NURR1- and PITX3-harboring lentiviruses. The Nurr1/Pitx3 -iPSCs were differentiated through a five-stage protocol to generate DAergic-like neurons. The results confirmed the efficient expression of DAergic neuron markers in the end of protocol. Beside, the generated cells could exclusively synthesize and secrete Dopamine in response to secretagogues. In conclusion, overexpression of Nurr1 and Pitx3 in iPSCs could efficiently program iPSCs into functional DAergic-like neurons. This finding may have an impact on future stem cell therapy of PD. PMID:27208834

  15. Microglia-Derived Cytokines/Chemokines Are Involved in the Enhancement of LPS-Induced Loss of Nigrostriatal Dopaminergic Neurons in DJ-1 Knockout Mice

    PubMed Central

    Chien, Chia-Hung; Lee, Ming-Jen; Liou, Houng-Chi; Liou, Horng-Huei; Fu, Wen-Mei

    2016-01-01

    Mutation of DJ-1 (PARK7) has been linked to the development of early-onset Parkinson’s disease (PD). However, the underlying molecular mechanism is still unclear. This study is aimed to compare the sensitivity of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenge between DJ-1 knockout (KO) and wild-type (WT) mice, and explore the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms. Our results found that the basal levels of interferon (IFN)-γ (the hub cytokine) and interferon-inducible T-cell alpha chemoattractant (I-TAC) (a downstream mediator) were elevated in the substantia nigra of DJ-1 KO mice and in microglia cells with DJ-1 deficiency, and the release of cytokine/chemokine was greatly enhanced following LPS administration in the DJ-1 deficient conditions. In addition, direct intranigral LPS challenge caused a greater loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons and striatal dopamine content in DJ-1 KO mice than in WT mice. Furthermore, the sensitization of microglia cells to LPS challenge to release IFN-γ and I-TAC was via the enhancement of NF-κB signaling, which was antagonized by NF-κB inhibitors. LPS-induced increase in neuronal death in the neuron-glia co-culture was enhanced by DJ-1 deficiency in microglia, which was antagonized by the neutralizing antibodies against IFN-γ or I-TAC. These results indicate that DJ-1 deficiency sensitizes microglia cells to release IFN-γ and I-TAC and causes inflammatory damage to dopaminergic neurons. The interaction between the genetic defect (i.e. DJ-1) and inflammatory factors (e.g. LPS) may contribute to the development of PD. PMID:26982707

  16. Biological effects of pramipexole on dopaminergic neuron-associated genes: relevance to neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Pan, Tianhong; Xie, Wenjie; Jankovic, Joseph; Le, Weidong

    2005-03-29

    Pramipexole (PRX) is a non-ergot dopamine (DA) D2/D3 receptor agonist. Experimental studies have provided evidence that PRX may exert neuroprotective effects on the nigro-striatal system. Recent studies have demonstrated a slower decline of DAT density in Parkinson's disease patients treated with PRX as measured by SPECT. The aim of this study is to determine whether PRX has direct biological effects on DAergic neuron-associated genes expression, including DAT, VMAT2, and Nurr1. The human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells were treated with PRX for various time periods and harvested to measure the mRNA and protein products of these genes. Treatment with PRX at 10 microM significantly increased DAT mRNA levels by 54-130% in 4-8 h, VMAT2 mRNA levels by 34% in 4 h, and Nurr1 mRNA levels by 31-39% in 2-4 h, which was the earliest induction among these three genes. The protein levels of DAT, VMAT2, and Nurr1 were markedly increased after PRX treatment, among which the increase of Nurr1 protein level was the highest at first 2 h treatment of PRX. Nafadotride, a D3 DA receptor antagonist, blocked the increase of Nurr1 gene expression induced by PRX, while eticlopride, a D2 DA receptor antagonist, didn't show this effect. Our findings that PRX has biological regulatory effects on DAergic neuron-associated genes may explain both the slower decline of imaged DAT and the neuroprotective effect of PRX. Furthermore, our results suggest that the induction of Nurr1 gene expression by PRX may be mediated by D3 DA receptor. PMID:15740846

  17. Involvement of estrogen receptors in the resveratrol-mediated increase in dopamine transporter in human dopaminergic neurons and in striatum of female mice.

    PubMed

    Di Liberto, Valentina; Mäkelä, Johanna; Korhonen, Laura; Olivieri, Melania; Tselykh, Timofey; Mälkiä, Annika; Do Thi, Hai; Belluardo, Natale; Lindholm, Dan; Mudò, Giuseppa

    2012-02-01

    Treatment with resveratrol (RSV) has been shown to protect vulnerable neurons after various brain injuries and in neurodegenerative diseases. The mechanisms for the effects of RSV in brain are not fully understood, but RSV may affect the expression of various gene products. RSV is structurally related to the synthetic estrogen, diethylstilbestrol so the effects of RSV may be gender-specific. Here we studied the role of RSV in the regulation of dopamine transporter (DAT) in the striatum using male and female mice. The basic levels of DAT in the striatum showed no sex difference, but the levels increased significantly by RSV (20 mg/kg i.p.) in female but not in male mice. Pretreatment of mice with the selective estrogen receptor (ER), ERα- and ERβ antagonist ICI 182,780, led to a complete block of RSV effect on DAT protein levels, suggesting that ERs are involved in the up-regulation of DAT by RSV. Similar data was also obtained in culture using human MESC2.10 and mouse SN4741 dopaminergic cells after treatment with RSV. Data further showed that RSV specifically induced gene transcription of DAT in the dopaminergic cells. These results show that estrogen receptors are involved in the up-regulation of DAT by RSV in the dopaminergic neurons, demonstrating a sex-dependent effect of RSV in the brain that may be of clinical importance. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder'. PMID:22041555

  18. Chronic administration of cholesterol oximes in mice increases transcription of cytoprotective genes and improves transcriptome alterations induced by alpha-synuclein overexpression in nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Richter, Franziska; Gao, Fuying; Medvedeva, Vera; Lee, Patrick; Bove, Nicholas; Fleming, Sheila M; Michaud, Magali; Lemesre, Vincent; Patassini, Stefano; De La Rosa, Krystal; Mulligan, Caitlin K; Sioshansi, Pedrom C; Zhu, Chunni; Coppola, Giovanni; Bordet, Thierry; Pruss, Rebecca M; Chesselet, Marie-Françoise

    2014-09-01

    Cholesterol-oximes TRO19622 and TRO40303 target outer mitochondrial membrane proteins and have beneficial effects in preclinical models of neurodegenerative diseases leading to their advancement to clinical trials. Dopaminergic neurons degenerate in Parkinson's disease (PD) and are prone to oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. In order to provide insights into the neuroprotective potential of TRO19622 and TRO40303 for dopaminergic neurons in vivo, we assessed their effects on gene expression in laser captured nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons of wildtype mice and of mice that over-express alpha-synuclein, a protein involved in both familial and sporadic forms of PD (Thy1-aSyn mice). Young mice were fed the drugs in food pellets or a control diet from 1 to 4months of age, approximately 10months before the appearance of striatal dopamine loss in this model. Unbiased weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) of transcriptional changes revealed effects of cholesterol oximes on transcripts related to mitochondria, cytoprotection and anti-oxidant response in wild-type and transgenic mice, including increased transcription of stress defense (e.g. Prdx1, Prdx2, Glrx2, Hspa9, Pink1, Drp1, Trak1) and dopamine-related (Th, Ddc, Gch1, Dat, Vmat2, Drd2, Chnr6a) genes. Even at this young age transgenic mice showed alterations in transcripts implicated in mitochondrial function and oxidative stress (e.g. Bcl-2, Bax, Casp3, Nos2), and both drugs normalized about 20% of these alterations. Young Thy1-aSyn mice exhibit motor deficits that differ from parkinsonism and are established before the onset of treatment; these deficits were not improved by cholesterol oximes. However, high doses of TRO40303 improved olfaction and produced the same effects as dopamine agonists on a challenging beam test, specifically an increase in footslips, an observation congruent with its effects on transcripts involved in dopamine synthesis. High doses of TRO19622 increased alpha

  19. Chronic administration of cholesterol oximes in mice increases transcription of cytoprotective genes and improves transcriptome alterations induced by alpha-synuclein overexpression in nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Richter, Franziska; Gao, Fuying; Medvedeva, Vera; Lee, Patrick; Bove, Nicholas; Fleming, Sheila M.; Michaud, Magali; Lemesre, Vincent; Patassini, Stefano; De La Rosa, Krystal; Mulligan, Caitlin K.; Sioshansi, Pedrom; Zhu, Chunni; Coppola, Giovanni; Bordet, Thierry; Pruss, Rebecca; Chesselet, Marie-Françoise

    2014-01-01

    Cholesterol-oximes TRO19622 and TRO40303 target outer mitochondrial membrane proteins and have beneficial effects in preclinical models of neurodegenerative diseases leading to their advancement to clinical trials. Dopaminergic neurons degenerate in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and are prone to oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. In order to provide insights into the neuroprotective potential of TRO19622 and TRO40303 for dopaminergic neurons in vivo, we assessed their effects on gene expression in laser captured nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons of wildtype mice and of mice that over-express alpha-synuclein, a protein involved in both familial and sporadic forms of PD (Thy1-aSyn mice). Young mice were fed the drugs in food pellets or a control diet from 1 to 4 months of age, approximately 10 months before the appearance of striatal dopamine loss in this model. Unbiased weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) of transcriptional changes revealed effects of cholesterol oximes on transcripts related to mitochondria, cytoprotection and anti-oxidant response in wild-type and transgenic mice, including increased transcription of stress defense (e.g. Prdx1, Prdx2, Glrx2, Hspa9, Pink1, Drp1, Trak1) and dopamine-related (Th, Ddc, Gch1, Dat, Vmat2, Drd2, Chnr6a) genes. Even at this young age transgenic mice showed alterations in transcripts implicated in mitochondrial function and oxidative stress (e.g. Bcl-2, Bax, Casp3, Nos2), and both drugs normalized about 20% of these alterations. Young Thy1-aSyn mice exhibit motor deficits that differ from parkinsonism and are established before the onset of treatment; these deficits were not improved by cholesterol oximes. However, high doses of TRO40303 improved olfaction and produced the same effects as dopamine agonists on a challenging beam test, specifically an increase in footslips, an observation congruent with its effects on transcripts involved in dopamine synthesis. High doses of TRO19622 increased

  20. LPA signaling is required for dopaminergic neuron development and is reduced through low expression of the LPA1 receptor in a 6-OHDA lesion model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xiao-Yun; Zhao, Ethan Y; Zhuang, Wen-Xin; Sun, Feng-Xiang; Han, Hai-Lin; Han, Hui-Rong; Lin, Zhi-Juan; Pan, Zhi-Fang; Qu, Mei-Hua; Zeng, Xian-Wei; Ding, Yuchuan

    2015-11-01

    Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) is a bioactive phospholipid that activates at least five known G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs): LPA1-LPA5. The nervous system is a major locus for LPA1 expression. LPA has been shown to regulate neuronal proliferation, migration, and differentiation during central nervous system development as well as neuronal survival. Furthermore, deficient LPA signaling has been implicated in several neurological disorders including neuropathic pain and schizophrenia. Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative movement disorder that results from the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). The specific molecular pathways that lead to DA neuron degeneration, however, are poorly understood. The influence of LPA in the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into DA neurons in vitro and LPA1 expression in a 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion model of PD in vivo were examined in the present study. LPA induced neuronal differentiation in 80.2 % of the MSC population. These MSCs developed characteristic neuronal morphology and expressed the neuronal marker, neuron-specific enolase (NSE), while expression of the glial marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), was absent. Moreover, 27.6 % of differentiated MSCs were positive for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), a marker for DA neurons. In the 6-OHDA PD rat model, LPA1 expression in the substantia nigra was significantly reduced compared to control. These results suggest LPA signaling via activation of LPA1 may be necessary for DA neuron development and survival. Furthermore, reduced LPA/LPA1 signaling may be involved in DA neuron degeneration thus contributing to the pathogenesis of PD. PMID:26169757

  1. Glucocorticoid receptor is involved in the neuroprotective effect of ginsenoside Rg1 against inflammation-induced dopaminergic neuronal degeneration in substantia nigra.

    PubMed

    Sun, Xian-Chang; Ren, Xiao-Fan; Chen, Lei; Gao, Xian-Qi; Xie, Jun-Xia; Chen, Wen-Fang

    2016-01-01

    Accumulating clinical and experimental evidence suggests that chronic neuroinflammation is associated with dopaminergic neuronal death in Parkinson's disease (PD). Ginsenoside Rg1, the most active components of ginseng, possesses a variety of biological effects on the central nervous system, cardiovascular system and immune system. The present study aimed to evaluate the protective effects of ginsenoside Rg1 on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced microglia activation and dopaminergic neuronal degeneration in rat substantia nigra (SN) and its potential mechanisms. Treatment with Rg1 could ameliorate the apomorphine-induced rotational behavior in LPS-lesioned rats. GR antagonist RU486 partly abolished the protective effect of Rg1. Rg1 treatment significantly attenuated LPS-induced loss of tyrosin hydroxlase (TH) positive neurons in substantial nigra par compacta (SNpc) and decreased content of dopamine (DA) and its metabolites in striatum of the lesioned side. Meanwhile, Rg1 significantly inhibited LPS-induced microglial activation and production of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β) and nitric oxide (NO). These effects were abolished by co-treatment with RU486. In addition, Rg1 treatment significantly inhibited the LPS-induced phosphorylation of IκB, extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2), c-Jun N-terminal protein kinase (JNK) and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38 MAPK) in the lesioned side of substantial nigra. These effect could be also partly blocked by RU486. Taken together, these data indicate that Rg1 has protective effects on mesencephalic dopaminergic neurons from LPS-induced microglia inflammation. GR signaling pathway might be involved in the anti-inflammatory effect of Rg1. PMID:26455404

  2. Simvastatin inhibits the activation of p21ras and prevents the loss of dopaminergic neurons in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Anamitra; Roy, Avik; Matras, Joanna; Brahmachari, Saurav; Gendelman, Howard E.; Pahan, Kalipada

    2010-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is second only to Alzheimer's disease as the most common devastating human neurodegenerative disorder. Despite intense investigation, no interdictive therapy is available for PD. We investigated whether simvastatin, an FDA-approved cholesterol-lowering drug, could protect against nigrostriatal degeneration following 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) intoxication to model PD in mice. First, MPP+ induced the activation of p21ras and NF-κB in mouse microglial cells. Inhibition of MPP+-induced activation of NF-κB by Δp21ras, a dominant-negative mutant of p21ras, supported the involvement of p21ras in MPP+-induced microglial activation of NF-κB. Interestingly, simvastatin attenuated activation of both p21ras and NF-κB in MPP+-stimulated microglial cells. Consistently, we found a very rapid activation of p21ras in vivo in the substantia nigra pars compacta of MPTP-intoxicated mice. However, after oral administration, simvastatin entered into the nigra, reduced nigral activation of p21ras, attenuated nigral activation of NF-κB, inhibited nigral expression of proinflammatory molecules, and suppressed nigral activation of glial cells. These findings paralleled dopaminergic neuronal protection, normalized striatal neurotransmitters, and improved motor functions in MPTP-intoxicated mice. Similarly, pravastatin, another cholesterol-lowering drug, suppressed microglial inflammatory responses and protected dopaminergic neurons in MPTP-intoxicated mice; but at levels less than simvastatin. Furthermore, both the statins administered 2 days after initiation of the disease were still capable of inhibiting the demise of dopaminergic neurons and concomitant loss of neurotransmitters suggesting that statins are capable of slowing down the progression of neuronal loss in the MPTP mouse model. Therefore, we conclude that statins may be of therapeutic benefit for PD patients. PMID:19864567

  3. Loss of collapsin response mediator protein 4 suppresses dopaminergic neuron death in an 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-induced mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Tonouchi, Aine; Nagai, Jun; Togashi, Kentaro; Goshima, Yoshio; Ohshima, Toshio

    2016-06-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by the selective loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). Several lines of evidence suggest that neurodegeneration in PD is accelerated by a vicious cycle in which apoptosis in dopaminergic neurons triggers the activation of microglia and harmful inflammatory processes that further amplify neuronal death. Recently, we demonstrated that the deletion of collapsin response mediator protein 4 (CRMP4) suppresses inflammatory responses and cell death in a mouse model of spinal cord injury, leading to improved functional recovery. We thus hypothesized that Crmp4-/- mice may have limited inflammatory responses and a decrease in the loss of SNc dopaminergic neurons in an 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced PD mouse model. We observed CRMP4 expression in neurons, astrocytes, and microglia/macrophages following the injection of 25 mg/kg MPTP. We compared the number of dopaminergic neurons and the inflammatory response in SNc between Crmp4+/+ and Crmp4-/- mice after MPTP injection. Limited loss of SNc dopaminergic neurons and decreased activations of microglia and astrocytes were observed in Crmp4-/- mice. These results suggest that CRMP4 is a novel therapeutic target in the treatment of PD patients. We demonstrated that genetic CRMP4 deletion delays a vicious cycle of inflammation and neurodegeneration in a Parkinson's disease mouse model. MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine) injection to wild-type mice induces collapsin response mediator protein 4 (CRMP4) up-regulation in neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. CRMP4-deficient mice show reduced inflammation and suppressed dopaminergic neuronal death after MPTP injection. These findings suggest that CRMP4 deletion may be a new therapeutic strategy against Parkinson's diseases. PMID:26991935

  4. Modeling dopaminergic and other processes involved in learning from reward prediction error: contributions from an individual differences perspective.

    PubMed

    Pickering, Alan D; Pesola, Francesca

    2014-01-01

    Phasic firing changes of midbrain dopamine neurons have been widely characterized as reflecting a reward prediction error (RPE). Major personality traits (e.g., extraversion) have been linked to inter-individual variations in dopaminergic neurotransmission. Consistent with these two claims, recent research (Smillie et al., 2011; Cooper et al., 2014) found that extraverts exhibited larger RPEs than introverts, as reflected in feedback related negativity (FRN) effects in EEG recordings. Using an established, biologically-localized RPE computational model, we successfully simulated dopaminergic cell firing changes which are thought to modulate the FRN. We introduced simulated individual differences into the model: parameters were systematically varied, with stable values for each simulated individual. We explored whether a model parameter might be responsible for the observed covariance between extraversion and the FRN changes in real data, and argued that a parameter is a plausible source of such covariance if parameter variance, across simulated individuals, correlated almost perfectly with the size of the simulated dopaminergic FRN modulation, and created as much variance as possible in this simulated output. Several model parameters met these criteria, while others did not. In particular, variations in the strength of connections carrying excitatory reward drive inputs to midbrain dopaminergic cells were considered plausible candidates, along with variations in a parameter which scales the effects of dopamine cell firing bursts on synaptic modification in ventral striatum. We suggest possible neurotransmitter mechanisms underpinning these model parameters. Finally, the limitations and possible extensions of our general approach are discussed. PMID:25324752

  5. Modeling dopaminergic and other processes involved in learning from reward prediction error: contributions from an individual differences perspective

    PubMed Central

    Pickering, Alan D.; Pesola, Francesca

    2014-01-01

    Phasic firing changes of midbrain dopamine neurons have been widely characterized as reflecting a reward prediction error (RPE). Major personality traits (e.g., extraversion) have been linked to inter-individual variations in dopaminergic neurotransmission. Consistent with these two claims, recent research (Smillie et al., 2011; Cooper et al., 2014) found that extraverts exhibited larger RPEs than introverts, as reflected in feedback related negativity (FRN) effects in EEG recordings. Using an established, biologically-localized RPE computational model, we successfully simulated dopaminergic cell firing changes which are thought to modulate the FRN. We introduced simulated individual differences into the model: parameters were systematically varied, with stable values for each simulated individual. We explored whether a model parameter might be responsible for the observed covariance between extraversion and the FRN changes in real data, and argued that a parameter is a plausible source of such covariance if parameter variance, across simulated individuals, correlated almost perfectly with the size of the simulated dopaminergic FRN modulation, and created as much variance as possible in this simulated output. Several model parameters met these criteria, while others did not. In particular, variations in the strength of connections carrying excitatory reward drive inputs to midbrain dopaminergic cells were considered plausible candidates, along with variations in a parameter which scales the effects of dopamine cell firing bursts on synaptic modification in ventral striatum. We suggest possible neurotransmitter mechanisms underpinning these model parameters. Finally, the limitations and possible extensions of our general approach are discussed. PMID:25324752

  6. Differential effects of selective lesions of cholinergic and dopaminergic neurons on serotonin-type 1 receptors in rat brain

    SciTech Connect

    Quirion, R.; Richard, J.

    1987-01-01

    Serotonin (5-HT)-type1 receptor binding sites are discretely distributed in rat brain. High densities of (3H)5-HT1 binding sites are especially located in areas enriched with cholinergic and dopaminergic innervation, such as the substantia innominata/ventral pallidum, striatum, septal nuclei, hippocampus and substantia nigra. The possible association of (3H)5-HT1 binding sites with cholinergic or dopaminergic cell bodies and/or nerve fiber terminals was investigated by selective lesions of the substantia innominata/ventral pallidum-cortical and septohippocampal cholinergic pathways and the nigrostriatal dopaminergic projection. (3H)5-HT1 receptor binding sites are possibly located on cholinergic cell bodies in the ventral pallidum-cortical pathway since (3H)5-HT1 binding in the substantia innominata/ventral pallidal area was markedly decreased following kainic acid lesions. Fimbriaectomies markedly decreased (3H)5-HT1 binding in the hippocampus, suggesting the presence of 5-HT1 binding sites on cholinergic nerve fiber terminals in the septohippocampal pathway. Lesions of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic projection did not modify (3H)5-HT1 binding in the substantia nigra and the striatum, suggesting that 5-HT1 receptors are not closely associated with dopaminergic cell bodies and nerve terminals in this pathway. These results demonstrate differential association between 5-HT1 receptors and cholinergic and dopaminergic innervation in rat brain.

  7. Effect of Dopaminergic D1 Receptors on Plasticity Is Dependent of Serotoninergic 5-HT1A Receptors in L5-Pyramidal Neurons of the Prefrontal Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Meunier, Claire Nicole Jeanne; Callebert, Jacques; Cancela, José-Manuel; Fossier, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    Major depression and schizophrenia are associated with dysfunctions of serotoninergic and dopaminergic systems mainly in the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Both serotonin and dopamine are known to modulate synaptic plasticity. 5-HT1A receptors (5-HT1ARs) and dopaminergic type D1 receptors are highly represented on dendritic spines of layer 5 pyramidal neurons (L5PyNs) in PFC. How these receptors interact to tune plasticity is poorly understood. Here we show that D1-like receptors (D1Rs) activation requires functional 5HT1ARs to facilitate LTP induction at the expense of LTD. Using 129/Sv and 5-HT1AR-KO mice, we recorded post-synaptic currents evoked by electrical stimulation in layer 2/3 after activation or inhibition of D1Rs. High frequency stimulation resulted in the induction of LTP, LTD or no plasticity. The D1 agonist markedly enhanced the NMDA current in 129/Sv mice and the percentage of L5PyNs displaying LTP was enhanced whereas LTD was reduced. In 5-HT1AR-KO mice, the D1 agonist failed to increase the NMDA current and orientated the plasticity towards L5PyNs displaying LTD, thus revealing a prominent role of 5-HT1ARs in dopamine-induced modulation of plasticity. Our data suggest that in pathological situation where 5-HT1ARs expression varies, dopaminergic treatment used for its ability to increase LTP could turn to be less and less effective. PMID:25775449

  8. Heat shock protein 60 affects behavioral improvement in a rat model of Parkinson's disease grafted with human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cell-derived dopaminergic-like neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Can; Li, Hui; Zhao, Xian-Jing; Liu, Zheng-Xia; Zhou, Ping; Liu, Ying; Feng, Mei-Jiang

    2016-06-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that is caused by a loss of dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons in mesencephalic substantia nigra (SN). Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUC-MSCs) are capable of self-renewal and differentiation into multiple cell lineages, including DAergic neurons. Thus, hUC-MSCs could be a promising alternative to compensate for the loss of DAergic neurons in PD. In the current study, hUC-MSCs and hUC-MSCs-derived DAergic-like neurons were transplanted into the striatum and SN of a rat model of PD that is induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). We evaluated their therapeutic effects on improving rotation behavior in the rat and on modulating the level of heat shock protein 60 (Hsp60) expression in the brain. After transplantation, an amelioration of rotation behavior was observed in rats that underwent cell grafting, and hUC-MSCs-derived DAergic-like neurons were superior to hUC-MSCs at inducing behavioral improvement. Western blot and immunohistochemistry analysis indicated significantly elevated levels of Hsp60 in cell-grafted rats compared to 6-OHDA-lesioned (PD) rats. These results demonstrate that hUC-MSCs-based cell transplantation is potential therapeutic treatment for PD, and hUC-MSCs-derived DAergic-like neurons appear to be favorable candidates for cell replacement therapy in PD. Finally, Hsp60 could be involved in a mechanism of behavioral recovery. PMID:26758268

  9. Sub-chronic treatment with classical but not atypical antipsychotics produces morphological changes in rat nigro-striatal dopaminergic neurons directly related to "early onset" vacuous chewing.

    PubMed

    Marchese, Giorgio; Casu, Maria Antonietta; Bartholini, Francesco; Ruiu, Stefania; Saba, Pierluigi; Gessa, Gian Luigi; Pani, Luca

    2002-04-01

    In the present work, we investigated if an impairment of dopaminergic neurons after subchronic haloperidol treatment might be a possible physiopathologic substrate of the "early onset" vacuous chewing movements (VCMs) in rats. For this purpose, different antipsychotics were used to analyse a possible relationship between VCMs development and morphological alterations of tyrosine-hydroxylase-immunostained (TH-IM) neurons. Rats treated twice a day with haloperidol displayed a significant increase of VCMs that was both time- (2-4 weeks) and dose (0.1-1 mg/kg) dependent. Immunocytochemical analysis showed a shrinkage of TH-IM cell bodies in substantia nigra pars compacta and reticulata and a reduction of TH-immunostaining in the striatum of haloperidol treated rats with the arising of VCMs. No differences were observed in TH-IM neurons of ventral tegmental area and nucleus accumbens vs. control rats. The atypical antipsychotics risperidone (2 mg/kg, twice a day), amisulpride (20 mg/kg, twice a day) and clozapine (10 mg/kg, twice a day) did not produce any nigro-striatal morphological changes or VCMs. TH-IM nigro-striatal neuron morphological alterations and VCMs were still present after three days of withdrawal in rats treated for four weeks with haloperidol (1 mg/kg). Both the main morphological changes and the behavioural correlate disappeared after three weeks of withdrawal. These results suggest that haloperidol induces a morphological impairment of the dopaminergic nigro-striatal neurons which is directly associated with the arising, permanency and disappearance of VCMs in rats. PMID:11982629

  10. Identification of dopaminergic neurons of nigral and ventral tegmental area subtypes in grafts of fetal ventral mesencephalon based on cell morphology, protein expression, and efferent projections.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Lachlan; Barraud, Perrine; Andersson, Elin; Kirik, Deniz; Björklund, Anders

    2005-07-01

    Transplants of fetal ventral mesencephalic tissue are known to contain a mixture of two major dopamine (DA) neuron types: the A9 neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and the A10 neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). Previous studies have suggested that these two DA neuron types may differ in their growth characteristics, but, because of technical limitations, it has so far been difficult to identify the two subtypes in fetal ventral mesencephalon (VM) grafts and trace their axonal projections. Here, we have made use of a transgenic mouse expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the tyrosine hydroxylase promoter. The expression of the GFP reporter allowed for visualization of the grafted DA neurons and their axonal projections within the host brain. We show that the SNpc and VTA neuron subtypes in VM grafts can be identified on the basis of their morphology and location within the graft, and their expression of a G-protein-gated inwardly rectifying K+ channel subunit (Girk2) and calbindin, respectively, and also that the axonal projections of the two DA neuron types are markedly different. By retrograde axonal tracing, we show that dopaminergic innervation of the striatum is derived almost exclusively from the Girk2-positive SNpc cells, whereas the calbindin-positive VTA neurons project to the frontal cortex and probably also other forebrain areas. The results suggest the presence of axon guidance and target recognition mechanisms in the DA-denervated forebrain that can guide the growing axons to their appropriate targets and indicate that cell preparations used for cell replacement in Parkinson's disease will be therapeutically useful only if they contain cells capable of generating the correct nigral DA neuron phenotype. PMID:16000637

  11. Phasic dopamine neuron activity elicits unique mesofrontal plasticity in adolescence.

    PubMed

    Mastwal, Surjeet; Ye, Yizhou; Ren, Ming; Jimenez, Dennisse V; Martinowich, Keri; Gerfen, Charles R; Wang, Kuan Hong

    2014-07-16

    The mesofrontal dopaminergic circuit, which connects the midbrain motivation center to the cortical executive center, is engaged in control of motivated behaviors. In addition, deficiencies in this circuit are associated with adolescent-onset psychiatric disorders in humans. Developmental studies suggest that the mesofrontal circuit exhibits a protracted maturation through adolescence. However, whether the structure and function of this circuit are modifiable by activity in dopaminergic neurons during adolescence remains unknown. Using optogenetic stimulation and in vivo two-photon imaging in adolescent mice, we found that phasic, but not tonic, dopamine neuron activity induces the formation of mesofrontal axonal boutons. In contrast, in adult mice, the effect of phasic activity diminishes. Furthermore, our results showed that dopaminergic and glutamatergic transmission regulate this axonal plasticity in adolescence and inhibition of dopamine D2-type receptors restores this plasticity in adulthood. Finally, we found that phasic activation of dopamine neurons also induces greater changes in mesofrontal circuit activity and psychomotor response in adolescent mice than in adult mice. Together, our findings demonstrate that the structure and function of the mesofrontal circuit are modifiable by phasic activity in dopaminergic neurons during adolescence and suggest that the greater plasticity in adolescence may facilitate activity-dependent strengthening of dopaminergic input and improvement in behavioral control. PMID:25031392

  12. Differentiated Human Midbrain-Derived Neural Progenitor Cells Express Excitatory Strychnine-Sensitive Glycine Receptors Containing α2β Subunits

    PubMed Central

    Wegner, Florian; Kraft, Robert; Busse, Kathy; Härtig, Wolfgang; Ahrens, Jörg; Leffler, Andreas; Dengler, Reinhard; Schwarz, Johannes

    2012-01-01

    Background Human fetal midbrain-derived neural progenitor cells (NPCs) may deliver a tissue source for drug screening and regenerative cell therapy to treat Parkinson’s disease. While glutamate and GABAA receptors play an important role in neurogenesis, the involvement of glycine receptors during human neurogenesis and dopaminergic differentiation as well as their molecular and functional characteristics in NPCs are largely unknown. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we investigated NPCs in respect to their glycine receptor function and subunit expression using electrophysiology, calcium imaging, immunocytochemistry, and quantitative real-time PCR. Whole-cell recordings demonstrate the ability of NPCs to express functional strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors after differentiation for 3 weeks in vitro. Pharmacological and molecular analyses indicate a predominance of glycine receptor heteromers containing α2β subunits. Intracellular calcium measurements of differentiated NPCs suggest that glycine evokes depolarisations mediated by strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors and not by D-serine-sensitive excitatory glycine receptors. Culturing NPCs with additional glycine, the glycine-receptor antagonist strychnine, or the Na+-K+-Cl− co-transporter 1 (NKCC1)-inhibitor bumetanide did not significantly influence cell proliferation and differentiation in vitro. Conclusions/Significance These data indicate that NPCs derived from human fetal midbrain tissue acquire essential glycine receptor properties during neuronal maturation. However, glycine receptors seem to have a limited functional impact on neurogenesis and dopaminergic differentiation of NPCs in vitro. PMID:22606311

  13. Assessment of the Protection of Dopaminergic Neurons by an α7 Nicotinic Receptor Agonist, PHA 543613 Using [(18)F]LBT-999 in a Parkinson's Disease Rat Model.

    PubMed

    Sérrière, Sophie; Doméné, Aurélie; Vercouillie, Johnny; Mothes, Céline; Bodard, Sylvie; Rodrigues, Nuno; Guilloteau, Denis; Routier, Sylvain; Page, Guylène; Chalon, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    The inverse association between nicotine intake and Parkinson's disease (PD) is well established and suggests that this molecule could be neuroprotective through anti-inflammatory action mediated by nicotinic receptors, including the α7-subtype (α7R). The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of an agonist of α7R, PHA 543613, on striatal dopaminergic neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation in a rat model of PD induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion. Adult male Wistar rats were lesioned in the right striatum and assigned to either the PHA group (n = 7) or the Sham group (n = 5). PHA 543613 hydrochloride at the concentration of 6 mg/kg (PHA group) or vehicle (Sham group) was intra-peritoneally injected 2 h before 6-OHDA lesioning and then at days 2, 4, and 6 post-lesion. Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging was performed at 7 days post-lesion using [(18)F]LBT-999 to quantify the striatal dopamine transporter (DAT). After PET imaging, neuroinflammation was evaluated in same animals in vitro through the measurement of the microglial activation marker 18 kDa translocator protein (TSPO) by quantitative autoradiography with [(3)H]PK-11195. The DAT density reflecting the integrity of dopaminergic neurons was significantly decreased while the intensity of neuroinflammation measured by TSPO density was significantly increased in the lesioned compared to intact striatum in both groups. However, these both modifications were partially reversed in the PHA group compared to Sham. In addition, a significant positive correlation between the degree of lesion and the intensity of neuroinflammation was evidenced. These findings indicate that PHA 543613 exerts neuroprotective effects on the striatal dopaminergic neurons associated with a reduction in microglial activation in this model of PD. This reinforces the hypothesis that an α7R agonist could provide beneficial effects for the treatment of PD. PMID:26389120

  14. Dopaminergic neuron loss and up-regulation of chaperone protein mRNA induced by targeted over-expression of alpha-synuclein in mouse substantia nigra.

    PubMed

    St Martin, Jessie L; Klucken, Jochen; Outeiro, Tiago F; Nguyen, Paul; Keller-McGandy, Christine; Cantuti-Castelvetri, Ippolita; Grammatopoulos, Tom N; Standaert, David G; Hyman, Bradley T; McLean, Pamela J

    2007-03-01

    Several transgenic mouse lines with altered alpha-synuclein expression have been developed that show a variety of Parkinson's disease-like symptoms without specific loss of dopaminergic neurons. Targeted over-expression of human alpha-synuclein using viral-vector mediated gene delivery into the substantia nigra of rats and non-human primates leads to dopaminergic cell loss and the formation of alpha-synuclein aggregates reminiscent of Lewy bodies. In the context of these recent findings, we used adeno-associated virus (AAV) to over-express wild type human alpha-synuclein in the substantia nigra of mice. We hypothesized that this over-expression would recapitulate pathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease, creating a mouse model to further characterize the disease pathogenesis. Recombinant AAV expressing alpha-synuclein was stereotaxically injected into the substantia nigra of mice, leading to a 25% reduction of dopaminergic neurons after 24 weeks of transduction. Furthermore, examination of mRNA levels of stress-related proteins using laser capture microdissection and quantitative PCR revealed a positive correlation of Hsp27 expression with the extent of viral transduction at 4 weeks and a positive correlation of Hsp40, Hsp70 and caspase 9 with the extent of viral transduction at 24 weeks. Taken together, our findings suggest that targeted over-expression of alpha-synuclein can induce pathology at the gross anatomical and molecular level in the substantia nigra, providing a mouse model in which upstream changes in Parkinson's disease pathogenesis can be further elucidated. PMID:17241127

  15. Dietary administration of diquat for 13 weeks does not result in a loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of C57BL/6J mice.

    PubMed

    Minnema, Daniel J; Travis, Kim Z; Breckenridge, Charles B; Sturgess, Nicholas C; Butt, Mark; Wolf, Jeffrey C; Zadory, Dan; Herberth, Mark T; Watson, Scott L; Cook, Andrew R; Botham, Philip A

    2016-03-01

    Male and female C57BL/6J mice were administered diquat dibromide (DQ∙Br2) in their diets at concentrations of 0 (control), 12.5 and 62.5 ppm for 13 weeks to assess the potential effects of DQ on the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system. Achieved dose levels at 62.5 ppm were 6.4 and 7.6 mg DQ (ion)/kg bw/day for males and females, respectively. A separate group of mice was administered 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) ip as a positive control. The comparative effects of DQ and MPTP on the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and/or striatum were assessed using neurochemical, neuropathological and stereological endpoints. Morphological and stereological assessments were performed by investigators who were "blinded" to dose group. DQ had no effect on striatal dopamine concentration or dopamine turnover. There was no evidence of neuronal degeneration, astrocytic or microglial activation, or a reduction in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase positive (TH(+)) neurons in the SNpc or neuronal processes in the striatum of DQ-treated mice. These results are consistent with the rapid clearance of DQ from the brain following a single dose of radiolabeled DQ. In contrast, MPTP-treated mice exhibited decreased striatal dopamine concentration, reduced numbers of TH(+) neurons in the SNpc, and neuropathological changes, including neuronal necrosis, as well as astrocytic and microglial activation in the striatum and SNpc. PMID:26683030

  16. Dimebon Does Not Ameliorate Pathological Changes Caused by Expression of Truncated (1–120) Human Alpha-Synuclein in Dopaminergic Neurons of Transgenic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Shelkovnikova, Tatyana A.; Ustyugov, Alexey A.; Millership, Steven; Peters, Owen; Anichtchik, Oleg; Spillantini, Maria Grazia; Buchman, Vladimir L.; Bachurin, Sergey O.; Ninkina, Natalia N.

    2011-01-01

    Background Recent clinical studies have demonstrated that dimebon, a drug originally designed and used as a non-selective antihistamine, ameliorates symptoms and delays progress of mild to moderate forms of Alzheimer's and Huntington's diseases. Although the mechanism of dimebon action on pathological processes in degenerating brain is elusive, results of studies carried out in cell cultures and animal models suggested that this drug might affect the process of pathological accumulation and aggregation of various proteins involved in the pathogenesis of proteinopathies. However, the effect of this drug on the pathology caused by overexpression and aggregation of alpha-synuclein, including Parkinson's disease (PD), has not been assessed. Objective To test if dimebon affected alpha-synuclein-induced pathology using a transgenic animal model. Methods We studied the effects of chronic dimebon treatment on transgenic mice expressing the C-terminally truncated (1–120) form of human alpha-synuclein in dopaminergic neurons, a mouse model that recapitulates several biochemical, histopathological and behavioral characteristics of the early stage of PD. Results Dimebon did not improve balance and coordination of aging transgenic animals or increase the level of striatal dopamine, nor did it prevent accumulation of alpha-synuclein in cell bodies of dopaminergic neurons. Conclusion Our observations suggest that in the studied model of alpha-synucleinopathy dimebon has very limited effect on certain pathological alterations typical of PD and related diseases. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel PMID:21576917

  17. Increased dopaminergic neuron sensitivity to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) in transgenic mice expressing mutant A53T alpha-synuclein.

    PubMed

    Yu, Wai Haung; Matsuoka, Yasuji; Sziráki, István; Hashim, Audrey; Lafrancois, John; Sershen, Henry; Duff, Karen E

    2008-05-01

    Familial Parkinson's disease (PD) has been linked to point mutations and duplication of the alpha-synuclein gene and mutant alpha-synuclein expression increases the vulnerability of neurons to exogenous insults. In this study, we analyzed the levels of dopamine and its metabolites in the olfactory bulb (OB), and nigrostriatal regions of transgenic mice expressing human, mutant A53T alpha-synuclein (alpha-syn tg) and their non-transgenic (ntg) littermates using a sub-toxic, moderate dose of MPTP to determine if mutant human alpha-synuclein sensitizes the central dopaminergic systems to oxidative stress. We observed that after a single, sub-lethal MPTP injection, dopamine levels were reduced in striatum and SN in both the alpha-syn tg and ntg mice. In the olfactory bulb, a region usually resistant to MPTP toxicity, levels were reduced only in the alpha-syn tg mice. In addition, we identified a significant increase in dopamine metabolism in the alpha-syn transgenic, but not ntg mice. Finally, MPTP treatment of alpha-syn tg mice was associated with a marked elevation in the oxidative product, 3-nitrotyrosine that co-migrated with alpha-synuclein. Cumulatively, the data support the hypothesis that mutant alpha-synuclein sensitizes dopaminergic neurons to neurotoxic insults and is associated with greater oxidative stress. The alpha-syn tg line is therefore useful to study the genetic and environmental inter-relationship in PD. PMID:17999181

  18. The role of dopaminergic and serotonergic systems in neurodevelopmental disorders: a focus on epilepsy and seizure susceptibility

    PubMed Central

    Tripathi, Prem Prakash; Bozzi, Yuri

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: The embryonic development of the vertebrate Central Nervous System (CNS) requires the induction of transcription factors regulating the expression of specific subsets of genes in restricted CNS regions. Among these transcription factors, homeobox-containing proteins play a crucial role, and altered expression of these factors can impact the embryonic as well as adult CNS functions. Importantly, the homeobox-containing genes Otx2, Engrailed-1 (En1), and Engrailed-2 (En2) have been described to crucially regulate differentiation of dopaminergic and serotonergic neurons during vertebrate CNS development. Dopaminergic and serotonergic neurons, located in midbrain and hindbrain regions respectively, diffusely innervate several forebrain areas including limbic system, contributing in regulating several physiological functions. Understanding the embryonic development of these neuronal populations is crucial to elucidate their physiological function including brain excitability in the adult brain. New evidence is emerging about the impact of an altered embryonic development of dopamine and serotonin neurons onto seizure susceptibility in the adult life. Methods: In this mini-review, we summarized our kainic acid (KA) induced seizure susceptibility in adult mutant mouse lines with targeted manipulation of Otx2, En1, and En2 genes. Results: Our results demonstrated that altered development of dopamine (DA) neurons does not interfere with KA seizure susceptibility, while increased serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) hyperinnervation leads to resistance to KA-induced seizure. Conclusion: We propose that developmental alterations of serotonergic but not dopaminergic circuits play a crucial role in controlling seizure susceptibility in the adult life PMID:26191504

  19. Midbrain-Driven Emotion and Reward Processing in Alcoholism

    PubMed Central

    Müller-Oehring, E M; Jung, Y-C; Sullivan, E V; Hawkes, W C; Pfefferbaum, A; Schulte, T

    2013-01-01

    Alcohol dependence is associated with impaired control over emotionally motivated actions, possibly associated with abnormalities in the frontoparietal executive control network and midbrain nodes of the reward network associated with automatic attention. To identify differences in the neural response to alcohol-related word stimuli, 26 chronic alcoholics (ALC) and 26 healthy controls (CTL) performed an alcohol-emotion Stroop Match-to-Sample task during functional MR imaging. Stroop contrasts were modeled for color-word incongruency (eg, word RED printed in green) and for alcohol (eg, BEER), positive (eg, HAPPY) and negative (eg, MAD) emotional word content relative to congruent word conditions (eg, word RED printed in red). During color-Stroop processing, ALC and CTL showed similar left dorsolateral prefrontal activation, and CTL, but not ALC, deactivated posterior cingulate cortex/cuneus. An interaction revealed a dissociation between alcohol-word and color-word Stroop processing: ALC activated midbrain and parahippocampal regions more than CTL when processing alcohol-word relative to color-word conditions. In ALC, the midbrain region was also invoked by negative emotional Stroop words thereby showing significant overlap of this midbrain activation for alcohol-related and negative emotional processing. Enhanced midbrain activation to alcohol-related words suggests neuroadaptation of dopaminergic midbrain systems. We speculate that such tuning is normally associated with behavioral conditioning to optimize responses but here contributed to automatic bias to alcohol-related stimuli. PMID:23615665

  20. BAC Transgenic Mice Expressing a Truncated Mutant Parkin Exhibit Age-dependent Hypokinetic Motor Deficits, Dopaminergic Neuron Degeneration, and Accumulation of Proteinase K-Resistant Alpha-Synuclein

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Xiao-Hong; Fleming, Sheila M.; Meurers, Bernhard; Ackerson, Larry C.; Mortazavi, Farzad; Lo, Victor; Hernandez, Daniela; Sulzer, David; Jackson, George R.; Maidment, Nigel T.; Chesselet, Marie-Francoise; Yang, X. William

    2009-01-01

    Summary Recessive mutations in parkin are the most common cause of familial early onset Parkinson's disease (PD). Recent studies suggest that certain parkin mutants may exert dominant toxic effects to cultured cells and such dominant toxicity can lead to progressive dopaminergic (DA) neuron degeneration in Drosophila. To explore whether mutant parkin could exert similar pathogenic effects to mammalian DA neurons in vivo, we developed a Bacterial Artificial Chromosome (BAC) transgenic mouse model expressing a C-terminal truncated human mutant parkin (Parkin-Q311X) in DA neurons driven by a dopamine transporter promoter. Parkin-Q311X mice exhibit multiple late-onset and progressive hypokinetic motor deficits. Stereological analyses reveal that the mutant mice develop age-dependent DA neuron degeneration in substantia nigra accompanied by a significant loss of DA neuron terminals in the striatum. Neurochemical analyses reveal a significant reduction of the striatal dopamine level in mutant mice, which is significantly correlated with their hypokinetic motor deficits. Finally, mutant Parkin-Q311X mice, but not wild-type controls, exhibit age-dependent accumulation of proteinase-K resistant endogenous α-synuclein in substantia nigra and co-localized with 3-nitrotyrosine, a marker for oxidative protein damage. Hence, our study provides the first mammalian genetic evidence that dominant toxicity of a parkin mutant is sufficient to elicit age-dependent hypokinetic motor deficits and DA neuron loss in vivo, and uncovers a causal relationship between dominant parkin toxicity and progressive α-synuclein accumulation in DA neurons. Our study underscores the need to further explore the putative link between parkin dominant toxicity and PD. PMID:19228951

  1. An imperfect dopaminergic error signal can drive temporal-difference learning.

    PubMed

    Potjans, Wiebke; Diesmann, Markus; Morrison, Abigail

    2011-05-01

    An open problem in the field of computational neuroscience is how to link synaptic plasticity to system-level learning. A promising framework in this context is temporal-difference (TD) learning. Experimental evidence that supports the hypothesis that the mammalian brain performs temporal-difference learning includes the resemblance of the phasic activity of the midbrain dopaminergic neurons to the TD error and the discovery that cortico-striatal synaptic plasticity is modulated by dopamine. However, as the phasic dopaminergic signal does not reproduce all the properties of the theoretical TD error, it is unclear whether it is capable of driving behavior adaptation in complex tasks. Here, we present a spiking temporal-difference learning model based on the actor-critic architecture. The model dynamically generates a dopaminergic signal with realistic firing rates and exploits this signal to modulate the plasticity of synapses as a third factor. The predictions of our proposed plasticity dynamics are in good agreement with experimental results with respect to dopamine, pre- and post-synaptic activity. An analytical mapping from the parameters of our proposed plasticity dynamics to those of the classical discrete-time TD algorithm reveals that the biological constraints of the dopaminergic signal entail a modified TD algorithm with self-adapting learning parameters and an adapting offset. We show that the neuronal network is able to learn a task with sparse positive rewards as fast as the corresponding classical discrete-time TD algorithm. However, the performance of the neuronal network is impaired with respect to the traditional algorithm on a task with both positive and negative rewards and breaks down entirely on a task with purely negative rewards. Our model demonstrates that the asymmetry of a realistic dopaminergic signal enables TD learning when learning is driven by positive rewards but not when driven by negative rewards. PMID:21589888

  2. An Imperfect Dopaminergic Error Signal Can Drive Temporal-Difference Learning

    PubMed Central

    Potjans, Wiebke; Diesmann, Markus; Morrison, Abigail

    2011-01-01

    An open problem in the field of computational neuroscience is how to link synaptic plasticity to system-level learning. A promising framework in this context is temporal-difference (TD) learning. Experimental evidence that supports the hypothesis that the mammalian brain performs temporal-difference learning includes the resemblance of the phasic activity of the midbrain dopaminergic neurons to the TD error and the discovery that cortico-striatal synaptic plasticity is modulated by dopamine. However, as the phasic dopaminergic signal does not reproduce all the properties of the theoretical TD error, it is unclear whether it is capable of driving behavior adaptation in complex tasks. Here, we present a spiking temporal-difference learning model based on the actor-critic architecture. The model dynamically generates a dopaminergic signal with realistic firing rates and exploits this signal to modulate the plasticity of synapses as a third factor. The predictions of our proposed plasticity dynamics are in good agreement with experimental results with respect to dopamine, pre- and post-synaptic activity. An analytical mapping from the parameters of our proposed plasticity dynamics to those of the classical discrete-time TD algorithm reveals that the biological constraints of the dopaminergic signal entail a modified TD algorithm with self-adapting learning parameters and an adapting offset. We show that the neuronal network is able to learn a task with sparse positive rewards as fast as the corresponding classical discrete-time TD algorithm. However, the performance of the neuronal network is impaired with respect to the traditional algorithm on a task with both positive and negative rewards and breaks down entirely on a task with purely negative rewards. Our model demonstrates that the asymmetry of a realistic dopaminergic signal enables TD learning when learning is driven by positive rewards but not when driven by negative rewards. PMID:21589888

  3. DECREASED EXPRESSION OF ErbB4 AND TYROSINE HYDROXYLASE mRNA AND PROTEIN IN THE VENTRAL MIDBRAIN OF AGED RATS

    PubMed Central

    DICKERSON, J. W.; HEMMERLE, A. M.; NUMAN, S.; LUNDGREN, K. H.; SEROOGY, K. B.

    2009-01-01

    Decreased availability or efficacy of neurotrophic factors may underlie an increased susceptibility of mesencephalic dopaminergic cells to age-related degeneration. Neuregulins (NRGs) are pleotrophic growth factors for many cell types including mesencephalic dopamine cells in culture and in vivo. The functional NRG receptor ErbB4 is expressed by virtually all midbrain dopamine neurons. To determine if levels of the NRG receptor are maintained during aging in the dopaminergic ventral mesencephalon, expression of ErbB4 mRNA and protein was examined in young (3 months), middle-aged (18 months), and old (24–25 months) Brown Norway/Fischer 344 F1 rats. ErbB4 mRNA levels in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc), but not the adjacent ventral tegmental area (VTA) or subtantia nigra pars lateralis (SNl), were significantly reduced in the middle-aged and old animals when compared to young rats. Protein expression of ErbB4 in the ventral midbrain was significantly decreased in the old rats when compared to the young rats. Expression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) mRNA levels were significantly reduced in the old rats when compared to young animals in the SNpc, but not in the VTA or SNl. Tyrosine hydroxylase protein levels in the ventral midbrain were also decreased in the old animals when compared to the young animals. These data demonstrate a progressive decline of ErbB4 expression, coinciding with a loss of the dopamine-synthesizing enzyme TH, in the ventral midbrain of aged rats, particularly in the SNpc. These findings may implicate a role for diminished NRG/ErbB4 trophic support in dopamine-related neurodegenerative disorders of aging such as Parkinson’s disease. PMID:19505538

  4. Effects of (-)-sesamin on 6-hydroxydopamine-induced neurotoxicity in PC12 cells and dopaminergic neuronal cells of Parkinson's disease rat models.

    PubMed

    Park, Hyun Jin; Zhao, Ting Ting; Lee, Kyung Sook; Lee, Seung Ho; Shin, Keon Sung; Park, Keun Hong; Choi, Hyun Sook; Lee, Myung Koo

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated the effects of (-)-sesamin on 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced neurotoxicity using PC12 cells and dopaminergic neuronal cells of 6-OHDA-lesioned rat model of Parkinson's disease (PD). In PC12 cells, treatment with (-)-sesamin (25 µM) reduced 6-OHDA (100 µM)-induced cell death and induced transient extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2) phosphorylation and Bad phosphorylation at Ser112 (BadSer112). In contrast, sustained ERK1/2 phosphorylation, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK) and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK1/2) phosphorylation, and cleaved-caspase-3 activity, all of which were induced by 6-OHDA (100 µM), were inhibited by treatment with (-)-sesamin (25 µM). Furthermore, co-treatment with (-)-sesamin (30 mg/kg, p.o.) once a day for 28 days significantly increased the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunopositive neuronal cells and the levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, and homovanillic acid in the substantia nigra-striatum of 6-OHDA-lesioned rat model of PD with or without L-DOPA treatment. These results suggest that (-)-sesamin protects 6-OHDA-induced cytotoxicity via the activation of transient ERK1/2-BadSer112 system and the inhibition of sustained ERK-p38MAPK-JNK1/2-caspase-3 system in PC12 cells. (-)-Sesamin also shows protective effects on long-term L-DOPA therapy in dopaminergic neuronal cells of PD rat models. (-)-Sesamin may serve as adjuvant therapeutics in PD. PMID:25747493

  5. Midbrain circuits for defensive behaviour.

    PubMed

    Tovote, Philip; Esposito, Maria Soledad; Botta, Paolo; Chaudun, Fabrice; Fadok, Jonathan P; Markovic, Milica; Wolff, Steffen B E; Ramakrishnan, Charu; Fenno, Lief; Deisseroth, Karl; Herry, Cyril; Arber, Silvia; Lüthi, Andreas

    2016-06-01

    Survival in threatening situations depends on the selection and rapid execution of an appropriate active or passive defensive response, yet the underlying brain circuitry is not understood. Here we use circuit-based optogenetic, in vivo and in vitro electrophysiological, and neuroanatomical tracing methods to define midbrain periaqueductal grey circuits for specific defensive behaviours. We identify an inhibitory pathway from the central nucleus of the amygdala to the ventrolateral periaqueductal grey that produces freezing by disinhibition of ventrolateral periaqueductal grey excitatory outputs to pre-motor targets in the magnocellular nucleus of the medulla. In addition, we provide evidence for anatomical and functional interaction of this freezing pathway with long-range and local circuits mediating flight. Our data define the neuronal circuitry underlying the execution of freezing, an evolutionarily conserved defensive behaviour, which is expressed by many species including fish, rodents and primates. In humans, dysregulation of this 'survival circuit' has been implicated in anxiety-related disorders. PMID:27279213

  6. Midbrain dopamine D2/3 receptor binding in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Tuppurainen, Heli; Kuikka, Jyrki T; Laakso, Mikko P; Viinamäki, Heimo; Husso, Minna; Tiihonen, Jari

    2006-09-01

    Several studies suggest that dysregulation of dopaminergic transmission in the midbrain and thalamus may contribute to the symptomatology of schizophrenia. The objective of this study was to examine the putative alteration of dopamine D(2/3 )receptor densities in the thalamus and midbrain of drug-naïve schizophrenic patients. We used the high-affinity single-photon emission tomography ligand [(123)I]epidepride for imaging D(2/3 )receptor binding sites in six neuroleptic-naïve schizophrenic patients, and seven healthy controls. Schizophrenic symptoms were evaluated by the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. Significantly lower D(2/3 )values were observed in the midbrain of patients with schizophrenia compared to controls (P = 0.02). No statistically significant difference was observed in the thalamus between two groups. Negative correlations were found between thalamic D(2/3 )receptor binding and general psychopathological schizophrenic symptoms (r from -0.78 to -0.92). These observations implicate altered dopaminergic activity in the midbrain of schizophrenic patients. PMID:16783502

  7. Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist reduces neonatal lipopolysaccharide-induced long-lasting neurobehavioral deficits and dopaminergic neuronal injury in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Pang, Yi; Tien, Lu-Tai; Zhu, Hobart; Shen, Juying; Wright, Camilla F; Jones, Tembra K; Mamoon, Samir A; Bhatt, Abhay J; Cai, Zhengwei; Fan, Lir-Wan

    2015-01-01

    Our previous study showed that a single lipopolysaccharide (LPS) treatment to neonatal rats could induce a long-lasting neuroinflammatory response and dopaminergic system injury late in life. This is evidenced by a sustained activation of microglia and elevated interleukin-1β (IL-1β) levels, as well as reduced tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression in the substantia nigra (SN) of P70 rat brain. The object of the current study was to test whether co-administration of IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra) protects against LPS-induced neurological dysfunction later in life. LPS (1 mg/kg) with or without IL-1ra (0.1 mg/kg), or sterile saline was injected intracerebrally into postnatal day 5 (P5) Sprague-Dawley male rat pups. Motor behavioral tests were carried out from P7 to P70 with subsequent examination of brain injury. Our results showed that neonatal administration of IL-1ra significantly attenuated LPS-induced motor behavioral deficits, loss of TH immunoreactive neurons, as well as microglia activation in the SN of P70 rats. These data suggest that IL-1β may play a pivotal role in mediating a chronic neuroinflammation status by a single LPS exposure in early postnatal life, and blockading IL-1β might be a novel approach to protect the dopaminergic system against perinatal infection/inflammation exposure. PMID:25898410

  8. Hydrogen in Drinking Water Reduces Dopaminergic Neuronal Loss in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Kyota; Seike, Toshihiro; Yutsudo, Noriko; Ohno, Mizuki; Yamada, Hidetaka; Yamaguchi, Hiroo; Sakumi, Kunihiko; Yamakawa, Yukiko; Kido, Mizuho A.; Takaki, Atsushi; Katafuchi, Toshihiko; Tanaka, Yoshinori

    2009-01-01

    It has been shown that molecular hydrogen (H2) acts as a therapeutic antioxidant and suppresses brain injury by buffering the effects of oxidative stress. Chronic oxidative stress causes neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD). Here, we show that drinking H2-containing water significantly reduced the loss of dopaminergic neurons in PD model mice using both acute and chronic administration of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). The concentration-dependency of H2 showed that H2 as low as 0.08 ppm had almost the same effect as saturated H2 water (1.5 ppm). MPTP-induced accumulation of cellular 8-oxoguanine (8-oxoG), a marker of DNA damage, and 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE), a marker of lipid peroxidation were significantly decreased in the nigro-striatal dopaminergic pathway in mice drinking H2-containing water, whereas production of superoxide (O2•−) detected by intravascular injection of dihydroethidium (DHE) was not reduced significantly. Our results indicated that low concentration of H2 in drinking water can reduce oxidative stress in the brain. Thus, drinking H2-containing water may be useful in daily life to prevent or minimize the risk of life style-related oxidative stress and neurodegeneration. PMID:19789628

  9. Hydrogen in drinking water reduces dopaminergic neuronal loss in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Kyota; Seike, Toshihiro; Yutsudo, Noriko; Ohno, Mizuki; Yamada, Hidetaka; Yamaguchi, Hiroo; Sakumi, Kunihiko; Yamakawa, Yukiko; Kido, Mizuho A; Takaki, Atsushi; Katafuchi, Toshihiko; Tanaka, Yoshinori; Nakabeppu, Yusaku; Noda, Mami

    2009-01-01

    It has been shown that molecular hydrogen (H(2)) acts as a therapeutic antioxidant and suppresses brain injury by buffering the effects of oxidative stress. Chronic oxidative stress causes neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD). Here, we show that drinking H(2)-containing water significantly reduced the loss of dopaminergic neurons in PD model mice using both acute and chronic administration of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). The concentration-dependency of H(2) showed that H(2) as low as 0.08 ppm had almost the same effect as saturated H(2) water (1.5 ppm). MPTP-induced accumulation of cellular 8-oxoguanine (8-oxoG), a marker of DNA damage, and 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE), a marker of lipid peroxidation were significantly decreased in the nigro-striatal dopaminergic pathway in mice drinking H(2)-containing water, whereas production of superoxide (O(2)*(-)) detected by intravascular injection of dihydroethidium (DHE) was not reduced significantly. Our results indicated that low concentration of H(2) in drinking water can reduce oxidative stress in the brain. Thus, drinking H(2)-containing water may be useful in daily life to prevent or minimize the risk of life style-related oxidative stress and neurodegeneration. PMID:19789628

  10. Characterization of the human oncogene SCL/TAL1 interrupting locus (Stil) mediated Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling transduction in proliferating mammalian dopaminergic neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Sun, Lei; Carr, Aprell L.; Li, Ping; Lee, Jessica; McGregor, Mary; Li, Lei

    2014-07-11

    Highlights: • Stil is a human oncogene that is conserved in vertebrate species. • Stil functions in the Shh pathway in mammalian cells. • The expression of Stil is required for mammalian dopaminergic cell proliferation. - Abstract: The human oncogene SCL/TAL1 interrupting locus (Stil) is highly conserved in all vertebrate species. In humans, the expression of Stil is involved in cancer cell survival, apoptosis and proliferation. In this research, we investigated the roles of Stil expression in cell proliferation of mammalian dopaminergic (DA) PC12 cells. Stil functions through the Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signal transduction pathway. Co-immunoprecipitation tests revealed that STIL interacts with Shh downstream components, which include SUFU and GLI1. By examining the expression of Stil, Gli1, CyclinD2 (cell-cycle marker) and PCNA (proliferating cell nuclear antigen), we found that up-regulation of Stil expression (transfection with overexpression plasmids) increased Shh signaling transduction and PC12 cell proliferation, whereas down-regulation of Stil expression (by shRNA) inhibited Shh signaling transduction, and thereby decreased PC12 cell proliferation. Transient transfection of PC12 cells with Stil knockdown or overexpression plasmids did not affect PC12 cell neural differentiation, further indicating the specific roles of Stil in cell proliferation. The results from this research suggest that Stil may serve as a bio-marker for neurological diseases involved in DA neurons, such as Parkinson’s disease.

  11. Enhanced proliferation and dopaminergic differentiation of ventral mesencephalic precursor cells by synergistic effect of FGF2 and reduced oxygen tension

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, Pia; Gramsbergen, Jan-Bert; Zimmer, Jens; Widmer, Hans R.; Meyer, Morten

    2011-07-15

    Effective numerical expansion of dopaminergic precursors might overcome the limited availability of transplantable cells in replacement strategies for Parkinson's disease. Here we investigated the effect of fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF2) and FGF8 on expansion and dopaminergic differentiation of rat embryonic ventral mesencephalic neuroblasts cultured at high (20%) and low (3%) oxygen tension. More cells incorporated bromodeoxyuridine in cultures expanded at low as compared to high oxygen tension, and after 6 days of differentiation there were significantly more neuronal cells in low than in high oxygen cultures. Low oxygen during FGF2-mediated expansion resulted also in a significant increase in tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-ir) dopaminergic neurons as compared to high oxygen tension, but no corresponding effect was observed for dopamine release into the culture medium. However, switching FGF2-expanded cultures from low to high oxygen tension during the last two days of differentiation significantly enhanced dopamine release and intracellular dopamine levels as compared to all other treatment groups. In addition, the short-term exposure to high oxygen enhanced in situ assessed TH enzyme activity, which may explain the elevated dopamine levels. Our findings demonstrate that modulation of oxygen tension is a recognizable factor for in vitro expansion and dopaminergic differentiation of rat embryonic midbrain precursor cells.

  12. miR-124 regulates cell apoptosis and autophagy in dopaminergic neurons and protects them by regulating AMPK/mTOR pathway in Parkinson’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Xin; Wang, Huiqing; Ye, Yongyi; Shu, Yugao; Deng, Yongwen; He, Xiaozheng; Lu, Guohui; Zhang, Shizhong

    2016-01-01

    The important roles of miR-124 in the development and progression of various diseases are being increasing recognized. This study was aimed to investigate the potential roles of miR-124 in dopaminergic (DA) neuronal apoptosis and autophagy in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and to explore their mechanisms. Human SH-SY5Y cells that are treated with MPTP were transfected with mature miR-124 vector and control empty vector. The effect of MPTP on miR-124 mRNA level was analyzed using RT-PCR analysis. Furthermore, the effects of miR-124 expression on neuronal apoptosis and autophagy, as well as the expression of proteins in the AMPK/mTOR pathway, were analyzed using RT-PCR and western blotting. This study found that miR-124 was down-regulated in the MPTP-treated (100 μM) neurons, and miR-124 suppression significantly increased cell apoptosis and induced autophagy-associated protein expression, including that of Beclin 1 and increased the ratio of LC3 II/LC3 I compared with that in controls. In addition, in vitro rescue of miR-124 significantly decreased the percentage of apoptotic cells and the ratio of LC3 II/LC3 I, findings that were approximately equal to the controls. Moreover, miR-124 suppression increased p-AMPK but decreased p-mTOR levels in neurons. Our study suggested that miR-124 functions as a protector of DA neurons during PD through the involvement of cell apoptosis and autophagy by regulating the AMPK/mTOR pathway. PMID:27347320

  13. Brain Human Monoclonal Autoantibody from Sydenham Chorea Targets Dopaminergic Neurons in Transgenic Mice and Signals Dopamine D2 Receptor: Implications in Human Disease1

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Carol J.; Sharma, Meenakshi; Leckman, James F.; Zuccolo, Jonathan; Zuccolo, Amir; Kovoor, Abraham; Swedo, Susan E.; Cunningham, Madeleine W.

    2013-01-01

    How autoantibodies target the brain and lead to disease in disorders such as Sydenham chorea (SC) is not known. SC is characterized by autoantibodies against the brain and is the main neurologic manifestation of streptococcal-induced rheumatic fever. Previously, our novel SC-derived mAb 24.3.1 was found to recognize streptococcal and brain antigens. To investigate in vivo targets of human mAb 24.3.1, VH/VL genes were expressed in B cells of transgenic (Tg) mice as functional chimeric human VH 24.3.1 - mouse constant region IgG1a autoantibody. Chimeric human-mouse IgG1a autoantibody co-localized with tyrosine hydroxylase in the basal ganglia within dopaminergic neurons in vivo in VH 24.3.1 Tg mice. Both human mAb 24.3.1 and IgG1a in Tg sera were found to react with human dopamine D2 receptor (D2R). Reactivity of chorea-derived mAb 24.3.1 or SC IgG with D2R was confirmed by 1) dose dependent inhibitory signaling of D2R as a potential consequence of targeting dopaminergic neurons, 2) reaction with surface-exposed FLAG epitope-tagged D2R, and 3) blocking of Ab reactivity by an extracellular D2R peptide. IgG from SC and a related subset of streptococcal associated behavioral disorders called pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder associated with streptococci (PANDAS) with small choreiform movements reacted in ELISA with D2R. Reaction with FLAG-tagged D2R distinguished SC from PANDAS while sera from both SC and PANDAS induced inhibitory signaling of D2R on transfected cells comparable to dopamine. Here we define a mechanism by which the brain may be altered by antibody in movement and behavioral disorders. PMID:24184556

  14. Dopamine/Tyrosine Hydroxylase Neurons of the Hypothalamic Arcuate Nucleus Release GABA, Communicate with Dopaminergic and Other Arcuate Neurons, and Respond to Dynorphin, Met-Enkephalin, and Oxytocin

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xiaobing

    2015-01-01

    We employ transgenic mice with selective expression of tdTomato or cre recombinase together with optogenetics to investigate whether hypothalamic arcuate (ARC) dopamine/tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) neurons interact with other ARC neurons, how they respond to hypothalamic neuropeptides, and to test whether these cells constitute a single homogeneous population. Immunostaining with dopamine and TH antisera was used to corroborate targeted transgene expression. Using whole-cell recording on a large number of neurons (n = 483), two types of neurons with different electrophysiological properties were identified in the dorsomedial ARC where 94% of TH neurons contained immunoreactive dopamine: bursting and nonbursting neurons. In contrast to rat, the regular oscillations of mouse bursting neurons depend on a mechanism involving both T-type calcium and A-type potassium channel activation, but are independent of gap junction coupling. Optogenetic stimulation using cre recombinase-dependent ChIEF-AAV-DJ expressed in ARC TH neurons evoked postsynaptic GABA currents in the majority of neighboring dopamine and nondopamine neurons, suggesting for the first time substantial synaptic projections from ARC TH cells to other ARC neurons. Numerous met-enkephalin (mENK) and dynorphin-immunoreactive boutons appeared to contact ARC TH neurons. mENK inhibited both types of TH neuron through G-protein coupled inwardly rectifying potassium currents mediated by δ and μ opioid receptors. Dynorphin-A inhibited both bursting and nonbursting TH neurons by activating κ receptors. Oxytocin excited both bursting and nonbursting neurons. These results reveal a complexity of TH neurons that communicate extensively with neurons within the ARC. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Here, we show that the great majority of mouse hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons that synthesize TH in the dorsomedial ARC also contain immunoreactive dopamine, and show either bursting or nonbursting electrical activity. Unlike

  15. Molecular determinants of selective dopaminergic vulnerability in Parkinson’s disease: an update

    PubMed Central

    Brichta, Lars; Greengard, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Numerous disorders of the central nervous system (CNS) are attributed to the selective death of distinct neuronal cell populations. Interestingly, in many of these conditions, a specific subset of neurons is extremely prone to degeneration while other, very similar neurons are less affected or even spared for many years. In Parkinson’s disease (PD), the motor manifestations are primarily linked to the selective, progressive loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). In contrast, the very similar DA neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) demonstrate a much lower degree of degeneration. Elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying the phenomenon of differential DA vulnerability in PD has proven extremely challenging. Moreover, an increasing number of studies demonstrate that considerable molecular and electrophysiologic heterogeneity exists among the DA neurons within the SNpc as well as those within the VTA, adding yet another layer of complexity to the selective DA vulnerability observed in PD. The discovery of key pathways that regulate this differential susceptibility of DA neurons to degeneration holds great potential for the discovery of novel drug targets and the development of promising neuroprotective treatment strategies. This review provides an update on the molecular basis of the differential vulnerability of midbrain DA neurons in PD and highlights the most recent developments in this field. PMID:25565977

  16. Functional Integration of Grafted Neural Stem Cell-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons Monitored by Optogenetics in an In Vitro Parkinson Model

    PubMed Central

    Tønnesen, Jan; Parish, Clare L.; Sørensen, Andreas T.; Andersson, Angelica; Lundberg, Cecilia; Deisseroth, Karl; Arenas, Ernest; Lindvall, Olle; Kokaia, Merab

    2011-01-01

    Intrastriatal grafts of stem cell-derived dopamine (DA) neurons induce behavioral recovery in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD), but how they functionally integrate in host neural circuitries is poorly understood. Here, Wnt5a-overexpressing neural stem cells derived from embryonic ventral mesencephalon of tyrosine hydroxylase-GFP transgenic mice were expanded as neurospheres and transplanted into organotypic cultures of wild type mouse striatum. Differentiated GFP-labeled DA neurons in the grafts exhibited mature neuronal properties, including spontaneous firing of action potentials, presence of post-synaptic currents, and functional expression of DA D2 autoreceptors. These properties resembled those recorded from identical cells in acute slices of intrastriatal grafts in the 6-hydroxy-DA-induced mouse PD model and from DA neurons in intact substantia nigra. Optogenetic activation or inhibition of grafted cells and host neurons using channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) and halorhodopsin (NpHR), respectively, revealed complex, bi