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Sample records for minisymposium axonal transport

  1. The axonal transport of mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Saxton, William M.; Hollenbeck, Peter J.

    2012-01-01

    Vigorous transport of cytoplasmic components along axons over substantial distances is crucial for the maintenance of neuron structure and function. The transport of mitochondria, which serves to distribute mitochondrial functions in a dynamic and non-uniform fashion, has attracted special interest in recent years following the discovery of functional connections among microtubules, motor proteins and mitochondria, and their influences on neurodegenerative diseases. Although the motor proteins that drive mitochondrial movement are now well characterized, the mechanisms by which anterograde and retrograde movement are coordinated with one another and with stationary axonal mitochondria are not yet understood. In this Commentary, we review why mitochondria move and how they move, focusing particularly on recent studies of transport regulation, which implicate control of motor activity by specific cell-signaling pathways, regulation of motor access to transport tracks and static microtubule–mitochondrion linkers. A detailed mechanism for modulating anterograde mitochondrial transport has been identified that involves Miro, a mitochondrial Ca2+-binding GTPase, which with associated proteins, can bind and control kinesin-1. Elements of the Miro complex also have important roles in mitochondrial fission–fusion dynamics, highlighting questions about the interdependence of biogenesis, transport, dynamics, maintenance and degradation. PMID:22619228

  2. Cargo distributions differentiate pathological axonal transport impairments

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Cassie S.; Lee, Robert H.; Coulter, Wallace H.

    2012-01-01

    Axonal transport is an essential process in neurons, analogous to shipping goods, by which energetic and cellular building supplies are carried downstream (anterogradely) and wastes are carried upstream (retrogradely) by molecular motors, which act as cargo porters. Impairments in axonal transport have been linked to devastating and often lethal neurodegenerative diseases, such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Huntington’s, and Alzheimer’s. Axonal transport impairment types include a decrease in available motors for cargo transport (motor depletion), the presence of defective or non-functional motors (motor dilution), and the presence of increased or larger cargos (protein aggregation). An impediment to potential treatment identification has been the inability to determine what type(s) of axonal transport impairment candidates that could be present in a given disease. In this study, we utilize a computational model and common axonal transport experimental metrics to reveal the axonal transport impairment general characteristics or “signatures” that result from three general defect types of motor depletion, motor dilution, and protein aggregation. Our results not only provide a means to discern these general impairments types, they also reveal key dynamic and emergent features of axonal transport, which potentially underlie multiple impairment types. The identified characteristics, as well as the analytical method, can be used to help elucidate the axonal transport impairments observed in experimental and clinical data. For example, using the model-predicted defect signatures, we identify the defect candidates, which are most likely to be responsible for the axonal transport impairments in the G93A SOD1 mouse model of ALS. PMID:22285784

  3. Methodological advances in imaging intravital axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Sleigh, James N.; Vagnoni, Alessio; Twelvetrees, Alison E.; Schiavo, Giampietro

    2017-01-01

    Axonal transport is the active process whereby neurons transport cargoes such as organelles and proteins anterogradely from the cell body to the axon terminal and retrogradely in the opposite direction. Bi-directional transport in axons is absolutely essential for the functioning and survival of neurons and appears to be negatively impacted by both aging and diseases of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The movement of individual cargoes along axons has been studied in vitro in live neurons and tissue explants for a number of years; however, it is currently unclear as to whether these systems faithfully and consistently replicate the in vivo situation. A number of intravital techniques originally developed for studying diverse biological events have recently been adapted to monitor axonal transport in real-time in a range of live organisms and are providing novel insight into this dynamic process. Here, we highlight these methodological advances in intravital imaging of axonal transport, outlining key strengths and limitations while discussing findings, possible improvements, and outstanding questions. PMID:28344778

  4. Methodological advances in imaging intravital axonal transport.

    PubMed

    Sleigh, James N; Vagnoni, Alessio; Twelvetrees, Alison E; Schiavo, Giampietro

    2017-01-01

    Axonal transport is the active process whereby neurons transport cargoes such as organelles and proteins anterogradely from the cell body to the axon terminal and retrogradely in the opposite direction. Bi-directional transport in axons is absolutely essential for the functioning and survival of neurons and appears to be negatively impacted by both aging and diseases of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The movement of individual cargoes along axons has been studied in vitro in live neurons and tissue explants for a number of years; however, it is currently unclear as to whether these systems faithfully and consistently replicate the in vivo situation. A number of intravital techniques originally developed for studying diverse biological events have recently been adapted to monitor axonal transport in real-time in a range of live organisms and are providing novel insight into this dynamic process. Here, we highlight these methodological advances in intravital imaging of axonal transport, outlining key strengths and limitations while discussing findings, possible improvements, and outstanding questions.

  5. AXONAL TRANSPORT: CARGO-SPECIFIC MECHANISMS OF MOTILITY AND REGULATION

    PubMed Central

    Maday, Sandra; Twelvetrees, Alison E.; Moughamian, Armen J.; Holzbaur, Erika L. F.

    2014-01-01

    Axonal transport is essential for neuronal function, and many neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative diseases result from mutations in the axonal transport machinery. Anterograde transport supplies distal axons with newly synthesized proteins and lipids, including synaptic components required to maintain presynaptic activity. Retrograde transport is required to maintain homeostasis by removing aging proteins and organelles from the distal axon for degradation and recycling of components. Retrograde axonal transport also plays a major role in neurotrophic and injury response signaling. This review provides an overview of the axonal transport pathway and discusses its role in neuronal function. PMID:25374356

  6. A model of axonal transport drug delivery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuznetsov, Andrey V.

    2012-04-01

    In this paper a model of targeted drug delivery by means of active (motor-driven) axonal transport is developed. The model is motivated by recent experimental research by Filler et al. (A.G. Filler, G.T. Whiteside, M. Bacon, M. Frederickson, F.A. Howe, M.D. Rabinowitz, A.J. Sokoloff, T.W. Deacon, C. Abell, R. Munglani, J.R. Griffiths, B.A. Bell, A.M.L. Lever, Tri-partite complex for axonal transport drug delivery achieves pharmacological effect, Bmc Neuroscience 11 (2010) 8) that reported synthesis and pharmacological efficiency tests of a tri-partite complex designed for axonal transport drug delivery. The developed model accounts for two populations of pharmaceutical agent complexes (PACs): PACs that are transported retrogradely by dynein motors and PACs that are accumulated in the axon at the Nodes of Ranvier. The transitions between these two populations of PACs are described by first-order reactions. An analytical solution of the coupled system of transient equations describing conservations of these two populations of PACs is obtained by using Laplace transform. Numerical results for various combinations of parameter values are presented and their physical significance is discussed.

  7. Synaptic Democracy and Vesicular Transport in Axons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bressloff, Paul C.; Levien, Ethan

    2015-04-01

    Synaptic democracy concerns the general problem of how regions of an axon or dendrite far from the cell body (soma) of a neuron can play an effective role in neuronal function. For example, stimulated synapses far from the soma are unlikely to influence the firing of a neuron unless some sort of active dendritic processing occurs. Analogously, the motor-driven transport of newly synthesized proteins from the soma to presynaptic targets along the axon tends to favor the delivery of resources to proximal synapses. Both of these phenomena reflect fundamental limitations of transport processes based on a localized source. In this Letter, we show that a more democratic distribution of proteins along an axon can be achieved by making the transport process less efficient. This involves two components: bidirectional or "stop-and-go" motor transport (which can be modeled in terms of advection-diffusion), and reversible interactions between motor-cargo complexes and synaptic targets. Both of these features have recently been observed experimentally. Our model suggests that, just as in human societies, there needs to be a balance between "efficiency" and "equality".

  8. Fast axonal transport in early experimental disc edema.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Anderson, D R

    1980-02-01

    Previous work has documented impairment of slow axonal transport in papilledema, but the abnormalities in rapid transport were less certain. Therefore fast axonal transport was studied in 19 primate eyes subjected to ocular hypotony for 6 to 72 hr following surgical fistulization of the anterior chamber. Mild, irregular alterations in fast axonal transport were detected only after nerve head swelling was apparent. These changes in fast transport mechanisms in cases of nerve head edema occur after, and may be secondary to, impaired slow axoplasmic flow and the resultant axonal swelling. Furthermore, since prolonged complete interruption of axonal transport is theoretically inconsistent with the continued normal neuron function characteristic of papilledema and, moreover, since previous data shows a "slowdown" rather than complete blockade of axonal transport in papilledema, it is likely that in eyes with papilledema there does not exist a complete flock of axonal transport. Therefore we hypothesize that the swelling results when slow axoplasmic flow is locally slowed down but not totally stopped, with the axon distention producing secondary mild, irregular changes in fast axonal transport.

  9. Fast axonal transport in isolated axoplasm from the squid giant axon.

    PubMed

    Song, Yuyu; Kang, Minsu; Morfini, Gerardo; Brady, Scott T

    2016-01-01

    The giant axon of the squid provides a unique cell biological model for analyzing the biochemistry and cell biology of the axon. These axons may exceed 500 μm in diameter and can be readily dissected. Once the surrounding small axons and connective tissue are removed, the axoplasm can be extruded as an intact cylinder of isolated cytoplasm. This isolated axoplasm is morphologically indistinguishable from the intact axon, but without permeability barriers. Fast axonal transport will continue for more than 4 h after extrusion and can be visualized in real time. By perfusing defined concentrations of proteins and/or reagents into the axoplasm, this preparation represents a powerful model for study of intracellular trafficking and its underlying molecular mechanisms.

  10. Partial interruption of axonal transport due to microtubule breakage accounts for the formation of periodic varicosities after traumatic axonal injury.

    PubMed

    Tang-Schomer, Min D; Johnson, Victoria E; Baas, Peter W; Stewart, William; Smith, Douglas H

    2012-01-01

    Due to their viscoelastic nature, white matter axons are susceptible to damage by high strain rates produced during traumatic brain injury (TBI). Indeed, diffuse axonal injury (DAI) is one of the most common features of TBI, characterized by the hallmark pathological profiles of axonal bulbs at disconnected terminal ends of axons and periodic swellings along axons, known as "varicosities." Although transport interruption underlies axonal bulb formation, it is unclear how varicosities arise, with multiple sites accumulating transported materials along one axon. Recently, axonal microtubules have been found to physically break during dynamic stretch injury of cortical axons in vitro. Here, the same in vitro model was used in parallel with histopathological analyses of human brains acquired acutely following TBI to examine the potential role of mechanical microtubule damage in varicosity formation post-trauma. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) following in vitro stretch injury revealed periodic breaks of individual microtubules along axons that regionally corresponded with undulations in axon morphology. However, typically less than a third of microtubules were broken in any region of an axon. Within hours, these sites of microtubule breaks evolved into periodic swellings. This suggests axonal transport may be halted along one broken microtubule, yet can proceed through the same region via other intact microtubules. Similar axonal undulations and varicosities were observed following TBI in humans, suggesting primary microtubule failure may also be a feature of DAI. These data indicate a novel mechanism of mechanical microtubule damage leading to partial transport interruption and varicosity formation in traumatic axonal injury.

  11. The transport properties of axonal microtubules establish their polarity orientation

    PubMed Central

    1993-01-01

    It is well established that axonal microtubules (MTs) are uniformly oriented with their plus ends distal to the neuronal cell body (Heidemann, S. R., J. M. Landers, and M. A. Hamborg. 1981. J. Cell Biol. 91:661-665). However, the mechanisms by which these MTs achieve their uniform polarity orientation are unknown. Current models for axon growth differ with regard to the contributions of MT assembly and transport to the organization and elaboration of the axonal MT array. Do the transport properties or assembly properties of axonal MTs determine their polarity orientation? To distinguish between these possibilities, we wished to study the initiation and outgrowth of axons under conditions that would arrest MT assembly while maintaining substantial levels of preexisting polymer in the cell body that could still be transported into the axon. We found that we could accomplish this by culturing rat sympathetic neurons in the presence of nanomolar levels of vinblastine. In concentrations of the drug up to and including 100 nM, the neurons actively extend axons. The vinblastine- axons are shorter than control axons, but clearly contain MTs. To quantify the effects of the drug on MT mass, we compared the levels of polymer throughout the cell bodies and axons of neurons cultured overnight in the presence of 0, 16, and 50 nM vinblastine with the levels of MT polymer in freshly plated neurons before axon outgrowth. Without drug, the total levels of polymer increase by roughly twofold. At 16 nM vinblastine, the levels of polymer are roughly equal to the levels in freshly plated neurons, while at 50 nM, the levels of polymer are reduced by about half this amount. Thus, 16 nM vinblastine acts as a "kinetic stabilizer" of MTs, while 50 nM results in some net MT disassembly. At both drug concentrations, there is a progressive increase in the levels of MT polymer in the axons as they grow, and a corresponding depletion of polymer from the cell body. These results indicate that

  12. Cytoplasmic dynein is associated with slow axonal transport.

    PubMed Central

    Dillman, J F; Dabney, L P; Pfister, K K

    1996-01-01

    Neuronal function is dependent on the transport of materials from the cell body to the synapse via anterograde axonal transport. Anterograde axonal transport consists of several components that differ in both rate and protein composition. In fast transport, membranous organelles are moved along microtubules by the motor protein kinesin. The cytoskeleton and the cytomatrix proteins move in the two components of slow transport. While the mechanisms underlying slow transport are unknown, it has been hypothesized that the movement of microtubules in slow transport is generated by sliding. To determine whether dynein, a motor protein that causes microtubule sliding in flagella, may play a role in slow axonal transport, we identified the transport rate components with which cytoplasmic dynein is associated in rat optic nerve. Nearly 80% of the anterogradely moving dynein was associated with slow transport, whereas only approximately 15% of the dynein was associated with the membranous organelles of anterograde fast axonal transport. A segmental analysis of the transport of dynein through contiguous regions of the optic nerve and tract showed that dynein is associated with the microfilaments and other proteins of slow component b. Dynein from this transport component has the capacity to bind microtubules in vitro. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that cytoplasmic dynein generates the movement of microtubules in slow axonal transport. A model is presented to illustrate how dynein attached to the slow component b complex of proteins is appropriately positioned to generate force of the correct polarity to slide microtubules down the axon. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 PMID:8552592

  13. Axonal Transport and Morphology: How Myelination gets Nerves into Shape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Peter; Zhao, Peng; Monsma, Paula; Brown, Tony

    2011-03-01

    The local caliber of mature axons is largely determined by neurofilament (NF) content. The axoskeleton, mainly consisting of NFs, however, is dynamic. NFs are assembled in the cell body and are transported by molecular motors on microtubule tracks along the axon at a slow rate of fractions of mm per day. We combine live cell fluorescent imaging techniques to access NF transport in myelinated and non-myelinated segments of axons with computational modeling of the active NF flow to show that a), myelination locally slows NF transport rates by regulating duty ratios and b), that the predicted increase in axon caliber agrees well with experiments. This study, for the first time, links NF kinetics directly to axonal morphology, providing a novel conceptual framework for the physical understanding of processes leading to the formation of axonal structures such as the ``Nodes of Ranvier'' as well as abnormal axonal swellings associated with neurodegenerative diseases like Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). NSF grants # IOS-0818412(PJ) and IOS-0818653 (AB).

  14. Morphology of axonal transport abnormalities in primate eyes.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Anderson, D R

    1981-11-01

    The ultrastructure of the retina and optic nerve head was studied in primate eyes after central retinal artery occlusion. Within 2 hours of the vascular occlusion the inner retinal layers undergo watery (isosmotic) swelling. This watery swelling of axons and astroglia extends into the nerve head as far back as the anterior boundary of the scleral lamina cribrosa. The swelling is increased 4 hours after the occlusion, and by 24 hours disintegration has occurred. At the optic nerve head mitochondria and vesicles of smooth endoplasmic reticulum begin to accumulate within 2 hours. The accumulation increases at 4 hours and persists to 24 hours. The watery swelling seems characteristic of ischaemic axons. Membranous organelles accumulate at the boundary of an ischaemic zone when material carried by axonal transport is brought via the healthy axon segment to the boundary, but they cannot proceed further into the ischaemic zone. Such accumulation is typical of locations where rapid orthograde axonal transport or retrograde axonal transport is blocked. In contrast, when slow axonal flow is impaired, the swelling is characterised by an excess of cytoplasmic gel without a marked accumulation of organelles. Rapid orthograde transport and retrograde transport seem to be closely related to one another, while slow axoplasmic flow seems fundamentally different. From morphological findings we suspect that, in experimental glaucoma, intraocular pressure first affects the intracellular physiological process of rapid orthograde and retrograde axonal transport. Watery swelling may not occur unless the ischaemic injury to cell metabolism is more advanced. In contrast, in experimental papilloedema, the swelling results predominantly from impaired slow axoplasmic flow.

  15. Morphology of axonal transport abnormalities in primate eyes.

    PubMed Central

    Radius, R L; Anderson, D R

    1981-01-01

    The ultrastructure of the retina and optic nerve head was studied in primate eyes after central retinal artery occlusion. Within 2 hours of the vascular occlusion the inner retinal layers undergo watery (isosmotic) swelling. This watery swelling of axons and astroglia extends into the nerve head as far back as the anterior boundary of the scleral lamina cribrosa. The swelling is increased 4 hours after the occlusion, and by 24 hours disintegration has occurred. At the optic nerve head mitochondria and vesicles of smooth endoplasmic reticulum begin to accumulate within 2 hours. The accumulation increases at 4 hours and persists to 24 hours. The watery swelling seems characteristic of ischaemic axons. Membranous organelles accumulate at the boundary of an ischaemic zone when material carried by axonal transport is brought via the healthy axon segment to the boundary, but they cannot proceed further into the ischaemic zone. Such accumulation is typical of locations where rapid orthograde axonal transport or retrograde axonal transport is blocked. In contrast, when slow axonal flow is impaired, the swelling is characterised by an excess of cytoplasmic gel without a marked accumulation of organelles. Rapid orthograde transport and retrograde transport seem to be closely related to one another, while slow axoplasmic flow seems fundamentally different. From morphological findings we suspect that, in experimental glaucoma, intraocular pressure first affects the intracellular physiological process of rapid orthograde and retrograde axonal transport. Watery swelling may not occur unless the ischaemic injury to cell metabolism is more advanced. In contrast, in experimental papilloedema, the swelling results predominantly from impaired slow axoplasmic flow. Images PMID:6173060

  16. Action in the axon: generation and transport of signaling endosomes.

    PubMed

    Cosker, Katharina E; Courchesne, Stephanie L; Segal, Rosalind A

    2008-06-01

    Neurons extend axonal processes over long distances, necessitating efficient transport mechanisms to convey target-derived neurotrophic survival signals from remote distal axons to cell bodies. Retrograde transport, powered by dynein motors, supplies cell bodies with survival signals in the form of 'signaling endosomes'. In this review, we will discuss new advances in our understanding of the motor proteins that bind to and move signaling components in a retrograde direction and discuss mechanisms that might specify distinct neuronal responses to spatially restricted neurotrophin signals. Disruption of retrograde transport leads to a variety of neurodegenerative diseases, highlighting the role of retrograde transport of signaling endosomes for axonal maintenance and the importance of efficient transport for neuronal survival and function.

  17. Axonal degeneration in paraplegin-deficient mice is associated with abnormal mitochondria and impairment of axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Ferreirinha, Fatima; Quattrini, Angelo; Pirozzi, Marinella; Valsecchi, Valentina; Dina, Giorgia; Broccoli, Vania; Auricchio, Alberto; Piemonte, Fiorella; Tozzi, Giulia; Gaeta, Laura; Casari, Giorgio; Ballabio, Andrea; Rugarli, Elena I.

    2004-01-01

    In several neurodegenerative diseases, axonal degeneration occurs before neuronal death and contributes significantly to patients’ disability. Hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) is a genetically heterogeneous condition characterized by selective degeneration of axons of the corticospinal tracts and fasciculus gracilis. HSP may therefore be considered an exemplary disease to study the local programs mediating axonal degeneration. We have developed a mouse model for autosomal recessive HSP due to mutations in the SPG7 gene encoding the mitochondrial ATPase paraplegin. Paraplegin-deficient mice are affected by a distal axonopathy of spinal and peripheral axons, characterized by axonal swelling and degeneration. We found that mitochondrial morphological abnormalities occurred in synaptic terminals and in distal regions of axons long before the first signs of swelling and degeneration and correlated with onset of motor impairment during a rotarod test. Axonal swellings occur through massive accumulation of organelles and neurofilaments, suggesting impairment of anterograde axonal transport. Retrograde axonal transport is delayed in symptomatic mice. We speculate that local failure of mitochondrial function may affect axonal transport and cause axonal degeneration. Our data suggest that a timely therapeutic intervention may prevent the loss of axons. PMID:14722615

  18. Partial Interruption of Axonal Transport Due to Microtubule Breakage Accounts for the Formation of Periodic Varicosities after Traumatic Axonal Injury

    PubMed Central

    Tang-Schomer, Min D.; Johnson, Victoria E.; Baas, Peter W.; Stewart, William; Smith, Douglas H.

    2012-01-01

    Due to their viscoelastic nature, white matter axons are susceptible to damage by high strain rates produced during traumatic brain injury (TBI). Indeed, diffuse axonal injury (DAI) is one of the most common features of TBI, characterized by the hallmark pathological profiles of axonal bulbs at disconnected terminal ends of axons and periodic swellings along axons, known as “varicosities.” Although transport interruption underlies axonal bulb formation, it is unclear how varicosities arise, with multiple sites accumulating transported materials along one axon. Recently, axonal microtubules have been found to physically break during dynamic stretch-injury of cortical axons in vitro. Here, the same in vitro model was used in parallel with histopathological analyses of human brains acquired acutely following TBI to examine the potential role of mechanical microtubule damage in varicosity formation post-trauma. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) following in vitro stretch-injury revealed periodic breaks of individual microtubules along axons that regionally corresponded with undulations in axon morphology. However, typically less than a third of microtubules were broken in any region of an axon. Within hours, these sites of microtubule breaks evolved into periodic swellings. This suggests axonal transport may be halted along one broken microtubule, yet can proceed through the same region via other intact microtubules. Similar axonal undulations and varicosities were observed following TBI in humans, suggesting primary microtubule failure may also be a feature of DAI. These data indicate a novel mechanism of mechanical microtubule damage leading to partial transport interruption and varicosity formation in traumatic axonal injury. PMID:22079153

  19. Mechanistic logic underlying the axonal transport of cytosolic proteins

    PubMed Central

    Scott, David A.; Das, Utpal; Tang, Yong; Roy, Subhojit

    2011-01-01

    Proteins vital to presynaptic function are synthesized in the neuronal perikarya and delivered into synapses via two modes of axonal transport. While membrane-anchoring proteins are conveyed in fast axonal transport via motor-driven vesicles, cytosolic proteins travel in slow axonal transport; via mechanisms that are poorly understood. We found that in cultured axons, populations of cytosolic proteins tagged to photoactivable-GFP (PA-GFP) move with a slow motor-dependent anterograde bias; distinct from vesicular-trafficking or diffusion of untagged PA-GFP. The overall bias is likely generated by an intricate particle-kinetics involving transient assembly and short-range vectorial spurts. In-vivo biochemical studies reveal that cytosolic proteins are organized into higher-order structures within axon-enriched fractions that are largely segregated from vesicles. Data-driven biophysical modeling best predicts a scenario where soluble molecules dynamically assemble into mobile supra-molecular structures. We propose a model where cytosolic proteins are transported by dynamically assembling into multi-protein complexes that are directly/indirectly conveyed by motors. PMID:21555071

  20. Rotational dynamics of cargos at pauses during axonal transport

    SciTech Connect

    Gu, Yan; Sun, Wei; Wang, Gufeng; Jeftinija, Ksenija; Jeftinija, Srdija; Fang, Ning

    2012-08-28

    Direct visualization of axonal transport in live neurons is essential for our understanding of the neuronal functions and the working mechanisms of microtubule-based motor proteins. Here we use the high-speed single particle orientation and rotational tracking technique to directly visualize the rotational dynamics of cargos in both active directional transport and pausing stages of axonal transport, with a temporal resolution of 2 ms. Both long and short pauses are imaged, and the correlations between the pause duration, the rotational behaviour of the cargo at the pause, and the moving direction after the pause are established. Furthermore, the rotational dynamics leading to switching tracks are visualized in detail. These first-time observations of cargo's rotational dynamics provide new insights on how kinesin and dynein motors take the cargo through the alternating stages of active directional transport and pause.

  1. Slowing of the axonal transport of neurofilament proteins during development

    SciTech Connect

    Hoffman, P.N.; Lasek, R.J.; Griffin, J.W.; Price, D.L.

    1983-08-01

    We examined age-dependent changes in neurofilament transport in motor axons of the rat sciatic nerve. SDS-PAGE and gel fluorography confirmed that the distribution of labeled neurofilament triplet protein coincides with the major slow component a (SCa) wave in these neurons. The velocity of neurofilament transport was calculated on the basis of the location of the 50th percentile of radioactivity in this wave 33 days after motor neurons were labeled by the intraspinal administration of (/sup 3/H)leucine and (/sup 3/H)lysine. Overall, the velocity fell from 1.95 mm/day at 3 weeks of age to 1.12 mm/day at 20 weeks. Between 3 and 10 weeks, it fell at a 6-fold higher rate (0.096 mm/day/week) than between 10 and 20 weeks (0.016 mm/day/week). We also found a marked change in the shape of the slow component wave during development. It appeared to consist of several overlapping peaks moving at slightly different velocities in animals 10 weeks of age or less as compared to a single slower moving peak at 20 weeks. We propose that the velocity of slow axonal transport reflects the level of maturation of the neuron, and that the presence of several overlapping peaks of transported radioactivity in the sciatic nerve of younger animals reflects the presence of several populations of motor axons at different stages of development. We also discuss the relationship between changes in the velocity of neurofilament transport and alterations in the composition of the cytoskeleton that occur as the axon grows in caliber during postnatal development.

  2. Changes in axonally transported proteins during axon regeneration in toad retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    1981-01-01

    In an effort to understand the regulation of the transition of a mature neuron to the growth, or regenerating, state we have analyzed the composition of the axonally transported proteins in the retinal ganglion cells of the toad Bufo marinus after inducing axon regeneration by crushing the optic nerve. At increasing intervals after axotomy, we labeled the retinal ganglion cells with [35S]methionine and subsequently analyzed the labeled transported polypeptides in the crushed optic nerve by means of one- and two-dimensional electrophoretic techniques. The most significant conclusion from these experiments is that, while the transition from the mature to the regenerating state does not require a gross qualitative alteration in the composition of axonally transported proteins, the relative labeling of a small subset of rapidly transported proteins is altered dramatically (changes of more than 20-fold) and reproducibly (more than 30 animals) by axotomy. One of these growth-associated proteins (GAPs) was soluble in an aqueous buffer, while three were associated with a crude membrane fraction. The labeling of all three of the membrane- associated GAPs increased during the first 8 d after axotomy, and they continued to be labeled for at least 4 wk. The modulation of these proteins after axotomy is consistent with the possibility that they are involve in growth-specific functions and that the altered expression of a small number of genes is a crucial regulatory event in the transition of a mature neuron to a growth state. In addition to these selective changes in rapidly transported proteins, we observed the following more general metabolic correlates of the regeneration process: The total radioactive label associated with the most rapidly transported proteins (groups I and II) increased three to fourfold during the first 8 d after the nerve was crushed, while the total label associated with more slowly moving proteins (group IV) increased about 10-fold during this same

  3. Axonal transport in the electromotor nerves of Torpedo marmorata.

    PubMed

    Davies, L P; Whittaker, V P; Zimmermann, H

    1977-12-19

    Studies on the axonal transport of cholinergic cell components were made on the electromotor nerves of Torpedo marmorata. Choline acetyltransferase was rapidly accumulated at ligatures on Torpedo nerves, both in vivo and in segments incubated in vitro. In vivo accumulation was maximal approximately one month after nerve interruption. Orthograde transport (both in vitro and in vivo) is calculated to have a velocity of 50--140 mm/day, if, as double-ligature experiments suggest, only about 15% of the axoplasmic enzyme is mobile. A small retrograde accumulation of the transferase was demonstrated. Lactate dehydrogenase did not accumulate but a slight reduction of its activity at ligatures was observed. In contrast to mammalian cholinergic nerves, no accumulation of esterase was observed. ACh accumulation proximal to a cut was apparent and may result in part from local synthesis in the presence of elevated levels of its synthesizing enzyme. Measurements have been made on the activity of choline acetyltransferase in the brain and all parts of the "electric system". In view of these results it is difficult to see how the measured rate of axonal translocation is sufficient to supply the levels of the enzyme found within the electric organ. Within the electromotor cells, choline acetyltransferase is highly concentrated in the axon terminals.

  4. Kinesin light chains are essential for axonal transport in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Gindhart, J G; Desai, C J; Beushausen, S; Zinn, K; Goldstein, L S

    1998-04-20

    Kinesin is a heterotetramer composed of two 115-kD heavy chains and two 58-kD light chains. The microtubule motor activity of kinesin is performed by the heavy chains, but the functions of the light chains are poorly understood. Mutations were generated in the Drosophila gene Kinesin light chain (Klc), and the phenotypic consequences of loss of Klc function were analyzed at the behavioral and cellular levels. Loss of Klc function results in progressive lethargy, crawling defects, and paralysis followed by death at the end of the second larval instar. Klc mutant axons contain large aggregates of membranous organelles in segmental nerve axons. These aggregates, or organelle jams (Hurd, D.D., and W.M. Saxton. 1996. Genetics. 144: 1075-1085), contain synaptic vesicle precursors as well as organelles that may be transported by kinesin, kinesin-like protein 68D, and cytoplasmic dynein, thus providing evidence that the loss of Klc function blocks multiple pathways of axonal transport. The similarity of the Klc and Khc (. Cell 64:1093-1102; Hurd, D.D., and W.M. Saxton. 1996. Genetics 144: 1075-1085) mutant phenotypes indicates that KLC is essential for kinesin function, perhaps by tethering KHC to intracellular cargos or by activating the kinesin motor.

  5. Rapid axonal transport in primate optic nerve. Distribution of pressure-induced interruption.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Anderson, D R

    1981-04-01

    Six primate eyes were studied after four hours of elevated intraocular pressure. Tissue specimens from the region of the lamina cribrosa were examined in cross section by transmission electron microscopy. Interruption in fast orthograde and retrograde axonal transport was identified in individual axons by noting accumulation of membraneous microorganelles, such as mitochondria and microvesicles within axon cylinders. Although organelle accumulation varied from bundle to bundle, involvement of individual axons was diffuse across the extent of a specific axon bundle. This observation contradicts the apparent association of axonal transport block with crosswise-oriented trabecular beams at the level of the lamina cribrosa as seen in tissue specimens examined in longitudinal section. It also fails to support the notion that blocked axonal transport with elevated pressure is produced by kinking of axons at the lamina.

  6. The dynein inhibitor Ciliobrevin D inhibits the bidirectional transport of organelles along sensory axons and impairs NGF-mediated regulation of growth cones and axon branches.

    PubMed

    Sainath, Rajiv; Gallo, Gianluca

    2015-07-01

    The axonal transport of organelles is critical for the development, maintenance, and survival of neurons, and its dysfunction has been implicated in several neurodegenerative diseases. Retrograde axon transport is mediated by the motor protein dynein. In this study, using embryonic chicken dorsal root ganglion neurons, we investigate the effects of Ciliobrevin D, a pharmacological dynein inhibitor, on the transport of axonal organelles, axon extension, nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced branching and growth cone expansion, and axon thinning in response to actin filament depolymerization. Live imaging of mitochondria, lysosomes, and Golgi-derived vesicles in axons revealed that both the retrograde and anterograde transport of these organelles was inhibited by treatment with Ciliobrevin D. Treatment with Ciliobrevin D reversibly inhibits axon extension and transport, with effects detectable within the first 20 min of treatment. NGF induces growth cone expansion, axonal filopodia formation and branching. Ciliobrevin D prevented NGF-induced formation of axonal filopodia and branching but not growth cone expansion. Finally, we report that the retrograde reorganization of the axonal cytoplasm which occurs on actin filament depolymerization is inhibited by treatment with Ciliobrevin D, indicating a role for microtubule based transport in this process, as well as Ciliobrevin D accelerating Wallerian degeneration. This study identifies Ciliobrevin D as an inhibitor of the bidirectional transport of multiple axonal organelles, indicating this drug may be a valuable tool for both the study of dynein function and a first pass analysis of the role of axonal transport.

  7. Effect of kinesin velocity distribution on slow axonal transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuznetsov, Andrey

    2012-08-01

    The goal of this paper is to investigate the effect that a distribution of kinesin motor velocities could have on cytoskeletal element (CE) concentration waves in slow axonal transport. Previous models of slow axonal transport based on the stop-and-go hypothesis (P. Jung, A. Brown, Modeling the slowing of neurofilament transport along the mouse sciatic nerve, Physical Biology 6 (2009) 046002) assumed that in the anterograde running state all CEs move with one and the same velocity as they are propelled by kinesin motors. This paper extends the aforementioned theoretical approach by allowing for a distribution of kinesin motor velocities; the distribution is described by a probability density function (PDF). For a two kinetic state model (that accounts for the pausing and running populations of CEs) an analytical solution describing the propagation of the CE concentration wave is derived. Published experimental data are used to obtain an analytical expression for the PDF characterizing the kinesin velocity distribution; this analytical expression is then utilized as an input for computations. It is demonstrated that accounting for the kinesin velocity distribution increases the rate of spreading of the CE concentration waves, which is a significant improvement in the two kinetic state model.

  8. Pathogenic forms of tau inhibit kinesin-dependent axonal transport through a mechanism involving activation of axonal phosphotransferases.

    PubMed

    Kanaan, Nicholas M; Morfini, Gerardo A; LaPointe, Nichole E; Pigino, Gustavo F; Patterson, Kristina R; Song, Yuyu; Andreadis, Athena; Fu, Yifan; Brady, Scott T; Binder, Lester I

    2011-07-06

    Aggregated filamentous forms of hyperphosphorylated tau (a microtubule-associated protein) represent pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and other tauopathies. While axonal transport dysfunction is thought to represent a primary pathogenic factor in AD and other neurodegenerative diseases, the direct molecular link between pathogenic forms of tau and deficits in axonal transport remain unclear. Recently, we demonstrated that filamentous, but not soluble, forms of wild-type tau inhibit anterograde, kinesin-based fast axonal transport (FAT) by activating axonal protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) and glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3), independent of microtubule binding. Here, we demonstrate that amino acids 2-18 of tau, comprising a phosphatase-activating domain (PAD), are necessary and sufficient for activation of this pathway in axoplasms isolated from squid giant axons. Various pathogenic forms of tau displaying increased exposure of PAD inhibited anterograde FAT in squid axoplasm. Importantly, immunohistochemical studies using a novel PAD-specific monoclonal antibody in human postmortem tissue indicated that increased PAD exposure represents an early pathogenic event in AD that closely associates in time with AT8 immunoreactivity, an early marker of pathological tau. We propose a model of pathogenesis in which disease-associated changes in tau conformation lead to increased exposure of PAD, activation of PP1-GSK3, and inhibition of FAT. Results from these studies reveal a novel role for tau in modulating axonal phosphotransferases and provide a molecular basis for a toxic gain-of-function associated with pathogenic forms of tau.

  9. Axonal transport interruption and anatomy at the lamina cribrosa.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Bade, B

    1982-10-01

    Pressure-induced, focal axonal transport abnormalities were studied in 14 cat eyes by the examination of serial step-section tissue radioautogram. Although the patterns of the transport interruption at the lamina cribrosa varied from eye to eye, the temporal sectors of the nerve head were most often involved by this abnormality. The anatomy at the lamina cribrosa was studied in adjacent (6 micrometers) cross-sectional specimens. The thickness of the extra-bundle trabeculae and the nerve fiber bundle dimensions including the cross-sectional area and the number and the shape (the ratio of the major and the minor axis diameters) of the laminar pores were measured by computer-assisted perimeter analysis. There was no correlation between the location of the transport interruption and any of these anatomic measurements.

  10. Tau phosphorylation affects its axonal transport and degradation

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Martín, Teresa; Cuchillo-Ibáñez, Inmaculada; Noble, Wendy; Nyenya, Fanon; Anderton, Brian H.; Hanger, Diane P.

    2013-01-01

    Phosphorylated forms of microtubule-associated protein tau accumulate in neurofibrillary tangles in Alzheimer's disease. To investigate the effects of specific phosphorylated tau residues on its function, wild type or phosphomutant tau was expressed in cells. Elevated tau phosphorylation decreased its microtubule binding and bundling, and increased the number of motile tau particles, without affecting axonal transport kinetics. In contrast, reducing tau phosphorylation enhanced the amount of tau bound to microtubules and inhibited axonal transport of tau. To determine whether differential tau clearance is responsible for the increase in phosphomimic tau, we inhibited autophagy in neurons which resulted in a 3-fold accumulation of phosphomimic tau compared with wild type tau, and endogenous tau was unaffected. In autophagy-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts, but not in neurons, proteasomal degradation of phosphomutant tau was also reduced compared with wild type tau. Therefore, autophagic and proteasomal pathways are involved in tau degradation, with autophagy appearing to be the primary route for clearing phosphorylated tau in neurons. Defective autophagy might contribute to the accumulaton of tau in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23601672

  11. Dynamics of axonal mRNA transport and implications for peripheral nerve regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Soonmoon; van Niekerk, Erna A.; Merianda, Tanuja T.; Twiss, Jeffery L.

    2009-01-01

    Locally generating new proteins in subcellular regions provides means to spatially and temporally modify protein content in polarized cells. Recent years have seen resurgence of the concept that axonal processes of neurons can locally synthesize proteins. Experiments from a number of groups have now shown that axonal protein synthesis helps to initiate growth, provides a means to respond to guidance cues, and generates retrograde signaling complexes. Additionally, there is increasing evidence that locally synthesized proteins provide functions beyond injury responses and growth in the mature peripheral nervous system. A key regulatory event in this translational regulation is moving the mRNA templates into the axonal compartment. Transport of mRNAs into axons is a highly regulated and specific process that requires interaction of RNA binding proteins with specific cis-elements or structures within the mRNAs. mRNAs are transported in ribonucleoprotein particles that interact with microtubule motor proteins for long-range axonal transport and likely use microfilaments for short-range movement in the axons. The mature axon is able to recruit mRNAs into translation with injury and possibly other stimuli suggesting that mRNAs can be stored in a dormant state in the distal axon until needed. Axotomy triggers a shift in the populations of mRNAs localized to axons indicating a dynamic regulation of the specificity of the axonal transport machinery. In this review, we discuss how axonal mRNA transport and localization are regulated to achieve specific changes in axonal RNA content in response to axonal stimuli. PMID:19699200

  12. Structural protein transport in elongating motor axons after sciatic nerve crush. Effect of a conditioning lesion.

    PubMed

    McQuarrie, I G

    1986-12-01

    In elongating motor axons of the rat sciatic nerve, the maximum outgrowth rate increased from 4.6 to 5.3 mm/d (5.3-6.1 X 10(-8) m/s) when a testing lesion of spinal nerves L4 and L5 was preceded 2 wk earlier by a conditioning lesion of the sciatic nerve. Axonal outgrowth was examined by measuring the transport of 35[S]methionine-labeled structural proteins (tubulin, actin, and neurofilament triplet) from "parent" axon stumps into "daughter" axon sprouts. Since these proteins are conveyed by the slow component of axonal transport at 1-5 mm/d (1.2-6.0 X 10(-8) m/s), the isotope was injected into the spinal cord 1 wk before the testing lesion. Nerves were removed 8 d after the testing lesion, sectioned into 3-mm segments, and homogenized; soluble proteins were separated by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Fluorographs were used as templates to identify gel segments for removal, solubilization, and liquid scintillation counting. Distributions of mean radioactivity for tubulin, actin, and neurofilament triplet were plotted for animals receiving a conditioning vs sham-conditioning lesion. Greater amounts of tubulin and actin were transported into daughter axons in the conditioned group. Tubulin was mainly increased in axon shafts, whereas actin was mainly increased in axon tips. These findings suggest that the axonal transport of tubulin and actin governs the rate of elongation.

  13. In vivo imaging of axonal transport of mitochondria in the diseased and aged mammalian CNS.

    PubMed

    Takihara, Yuji; Inatani, Masaru; Eto, Kei; Inoue, Toshihiro; Kreymerman, Alexander; Miyake, Seiji; Ueno, Shinji; Nagaya, Masatoshi; Nakanishi, Ayami; Iwao, Keiichiro; Takamura, Yoshihiro; Sakamoto, Hirotaka; Satoh, Keita; Kondo, Mineo; Sakamoto, Tatsuya; Goldberg, Jeffrey L; Nabekura, Junichi; Tanihara, Hidenobu

    2015-08-18

    The lack of intravital imaging of axonal transport of mitochondria in the mammalian CNS precludes characterization of the dynamics of axonal transport of mitochondria in the diseased and aged mammalian CNS. Glaucoma, the most common neurodegenerative eye disease, is characterized by axon degeneration and the death of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and by an age-related increase in incidence. RGC death is hypothesized to result from disturbances in axonal transport and in mitochondrial function. Here we report minimally invasive intravital multiphoton imaging of anesthetized mouse RGCs through the sclera that provides sequential time-lapse images of mitochondria transported in a single axon with submicrometer resolution. Unlike findings from explants, we show that the axonal transport of mitochondria is highly dynamic in the mammalian CNS in vivo under physiological conditions. Furthermore, in the early stage of glaucoma modeled in adult (4-mo-old) mice, the number of transported mitochondria decreases before RGC death, although transport does not shorten. However, with increasing age up to 23-25 mo, mitochondrial transport (duration, distance, and duty cycle) shortens. In axons, mitochondria-free regions increase and lengths of transported mitochondria decrease with aging, although totally organized transport patterns are preserved in old (23- to 25-mo-old) mice. Moreover, axonal transport of mitochondria is more vulnerable to glaucomatous insults in old mice than in adult mice. These mitochondrial changes with aging may underlie the age-related increase in glaucoma incidence. Our method is useful for characterizing the dynamics of axonal transport of mitochondria and may be applied to other submicrometer structures in the diseased and aged mammalian CNS in vivo.

  14. In vivo Imaging of Mitochondrial Transport in Single-Axon Regeneration of Zebrafish Mauthner Cells

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yang; Chen, Min; Hu, Bingbing; Huang, Rongchen; Hu, Bing

    2017-01-01

    Mitochondrial transport is essential for neuronal function, but the evidence of connections between mitochondrial transport and axon regeneration in the central nervous system (CNS) of living vertebrates remains limited. Here, we developed a novel model to explore mitochondrial transport in a single Mauthner axon (M axon) of zebrafish with non-invasive in vivo imaging. To confirm the feasibility of using this model, we treated labeled zebrafish with nocodazole and demonstrated that it could disrupt mitochondrial transport. We also used two-photon laser axotomy to precisely axotomize M axons and simultaneously recorded their regeneration and the process of mitochondrial transport in living zebrafish larvae. The findings showed that the injured axons with stronger regenerative capability maintain greater mitochondrial motility. Furthermore, to stimulate axon regeneration, treatment with dibutyryl cyclic adenosine monophosphate (db-cAMP) could also augment mitochondrial motility. Taken together, our results provide new evidence that mitochondrial motility is positively correlated with axon regeneration in the living vertebrate CNS. This promising model will be useful for further studies on the interaction between axon regeneration and mitochondrial dynamics, using various genetic and pharmacological techniques. PMID:28174522

  15. The movement of membranous organelles in axons. Electron microscopic identification of anterogradely and retrogradely transported organelles

    PubMed Central

    1980-01-01

    To identify the structures to be rapidly transported through the axons, we developed a new method to permit local cooling of mouse saphenous nerves in situ without exposing them. By this method, both anterograde and retrograde transport were successfully interrupted, while the structural integrity of the nerves was well preserved. Using radioactive tracers, anterogradely transported proteins were shown to accumulate just proximal to the cooled site, and retrogradely transported proteins just distal to the cooled site. Where the anterogradely transported proteins accumulated, the vesiculotubular membranous structures increased in amount inside both myelinated and unmyelinated axons. Such accumulated membranous structures showed a relatively uniform diameter of 50--80 nm, and some of them seemed to be continuous with the axonal smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER). Thick sections of nerves selectively stained for the axonal membranous structures revealed that the network of the axonal SER was also packed inside axons proximal to the cooled site. In contrast, large membranous bodies of varying sizes accumulated inside axons just distal to the cooled site, where the retrogradely transported proteins accumulated. These bodies were composed mainly of multivesicular bodies and lamellated membranous structures. When horseradish peroxidase was administered in the distal end of the nerve, membranous bodies showing this activity accumulated, together with unstained membranous bodies. Hence, we are led to propose that, besides mitochondria, the membranous components in the axon can be classified into two systems from the viewpoint of axonal transport: "axonal SER and vesiculotubular structures" in the anterograde direction and "large membranous bodies" in the retrograde direction. PMID:6153657

  16. Axonal transport defects are a common phenotype in Drosophila models of ALS

    PubMed Central

    Baldwin, Katie R.; Godena, Vinay K.; Hewitt, Victoria L.; Whitworth, Alexander J.

    2016-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by the degeneration of motor neurons resulting in a catastrophic loss of motor function. Current therapies are severely limited owing to a poor mechanistic understanding of the pathobiology. Mutations in a large number of genes have now been linked to ALS, including SOD1, TARDBP (TDP-43), FUS and C9orf72. Functional analyses of these genes and their pathogenic mutations have provided great insights into the underlying disease mechanisms. Defective axonal transport is hypothesized to be a key factor in the selective vulnerability of motor nerves due to their extraordinary length and evidence that ALS occurs as a distal axonopathy. Axonal transport is seen as an early pathogenic event that precedes cell loss and clinical symptoms and so represents an upstream mechanism for therapeutic targeting. Studies have begun to describe the impact of a few pathogenic mutations on axonal transport but a broad survey across a range of models and cargos is warranted. Here, we assessed the axonal transport of different cargos in multiple Drosophila models of ALS. We found that axonal transport defects are common across all models tested, although they often showed a differential effect between mitochondria and vesicle cargos. Motor deficits were also common across the models and generally worsened with age, though surprisingly there was not a clear correlation between the severity of axonal transport defects and motor ability. These results further support defects in axonal transport as a common factor in models of ALS that may contribute to the pathogenic process. PMID:27056981

  17. A close look at axonal transport: Cargos slow down when crossing stationary organelles.

    PubMed

    Che, Daphne L; Chowdary, Praveen D; Cui, Bianxiao

    2016-01-01

    The bidirectional transport of cargos along the thin axon is fundamental for the structure, function and survival of neurons. Defective axonal transport has been linked to the mechanism of neurodegenerative diseases. In this paper, we study the effect of the local axonal environment to cargo transport behavior in neurons. Using dual-color fluorescence imaging in microfluidic neuronal devices, we quantify the transport dynamics of cargos when crossing stationary organelles such as non-moving endosomes and stationary mitochondria in the axon. We show that the axonal cargos tend to slow down, or pause transiently within the vicinity of stationary organelles. The slow-down effect is observed in both retrograde and anterograde transport directions of three different cargos (TrkA, lysosomes and TrkB). Our results agree with the hypothesis that bulky axonal structures can pose as steric hindrance for axonal transport. However, the results do not rule out the possibility that cellular mechanisms causing stationary organelles are also responsible for the delay in moving cargos at the same locations.

  18. There and back again: coordinated transcription, translation and transport in axonal survival and regeneration.

    PubMed

    Tasdemir-Yilmaz, Ozge E; Segal, Rosalind A

    2016-08-01

    Neurons are highly polarized cells with axonal and dendritic projections that extend over long distances. Target-derived neurotrophins provide local axonal cues that function in developing neurons, while physical or chemical injuries to long axons initiate local environmental cues in mature neurons. In both instances initial responses at the location of stimulation or injury must be coordinated with changes in the transcriptional program and subsequent changes in axonal protein content. To achieve this coordination, intracellular signals move 'there and back again' between axons and the nucleus. Here, we review new findings on neuronal responses to growth factors and injury and highlight the coordination of transcription, translation and transport required to mediate communication between axons and cell bodies.

  19. Facilitation of axon regeneration by enhancing mitochondrial transport and rescuing energy deficits

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Panpan; Lin, Mei-Yao; Chen, Yanmin

    2016-01-01

    Although neuronal regeneration is a highly energy-demanding process, axonal mitochondrial transport progressively declines with maturation. Mature neurons typically fail to regenerate after injury, thus raising a fundamental question as to whether mitochondrial transport is necessary to meet enhanced metabolic requirements during regeneration. Here, we reveal that reduced mitochondrial motility and energy deficits in injured axons are intrinsic mechanisms controlling regrowth in mature neurons. Axotomy induces acute mitochondrial depolarization and ATP depletion in injured axons. Thus, mature neuron-associated increases in mitochondria-anchoring protein syntaphilin (SNPH) and decreases in mitochondrial transport cause local energy deficits. Strikingly, enhancing mitochondrial transport via genetic manipulation facilitates regenerative capacity by replenishing healthy mitochondria in injured axons, thereby rescuing energy deficits. An in vivo sciatic nerve crush study further shows that enhanced mitochondrial transport in snph knockout mice accelerates axon regeneration. Understanding deficits in mitochondrial trafficking and energy supply in injured axons of mature neurons benefits development of new strategies to stimulate axon regeneration. PMID:27268498

  20. Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIalpha in optic axons moves with slow axonal transport and undergoes posttranslational modification.

    PubMed

    Lund, L M; McQuarrie, I G

    2001-12-21

    In neurons, the mRNA for calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II alpha (CKIIalpha) is known to be targeted to dendrites-where the enzyme is synthesized and supports postsynaptic functions. We are interested in knowing how neuronal proteins enter axons from the nerve cell body, and the mechanism for protein transport to terminals. Because CKIIalpha immunofluorescence can be demonstrated in over 80% of retinal ganglion cells, we asked whether this regulatory protein is being transported into optic axons. Using Sprague-Dawley rats, [(35)S] methionine was injected into the vitreous humor of the eye. Four days later, the optic nerves, tracts, lateral geniculate ganglia, and superior colliculi were removed and processed for 2D-PAGE and Western blotting. Radiolabeled CKIIalpha appears to move with slow component b (SCb) of axonal transport, as is the case in rodent sciatic motor neurons. In addition, the radiolabeled CKIIalpha isoform that enters the optic nerve is found to be 4 kDa heavier (in SDS-PAGE molecular mass) than the isoform in the optic tract, superior colliculus, and lateral geniculate nucleus. This reduction is likely the result of dephosphorylation, which is a mechanism used to regulate the enzyme's activity.

  1. Optic nerve fast axonal transport abnormalities in primates. Occurrence after short posterior ciliary artery occlusion.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L

    1980-11-01

    Fast axonal transport abnormalities in primate (Aotus trivirgatus) optic nerve were studied in ten eyes at various intervals after occlusion of the lateral short posterior ciliary circulation. Evidence of focal axonal ischemia, as indicated by swelling of mitochondria and dissolution of cytoplasmic detail, was noted as early as one hour after occlusion. Accumulation of mitochondria, microvesicles, and dense bodies, indicating focal interruption of axonal transport mechanisms, was noted in eyes examined at 2, 4, and 6 hours. This accumulation of organelles was limited to the region of the lamina cribrosa. Nerve head abnormalities were not seen in two eyes studied at two weeks.

  2. Axonal transport of proteins. A new view using in vivo covalent labeling

    PubMed Central

    1980-01-01

    The injection of [2,3-3H]N-succinimidyl propionate ([3H]N-SP) into the rat sciatic nerve was used to covalently label both intra- and extra- axonal proteins. While extra-axonal proteins (e.g., myelin proteins) remained in the injection site, the intra-axonal proteins were transported in both the anterograde and retrograde directions. The mobile labeled proteins appeared to move by normal axonal transport processes because: (a) autoradiographic studies showed that they were localized exclusively within the axon at considerable distances from the injection site, (b) specific and identifiable proteins (by SDS gel electrophoresis) moved at expected rates in the anterograde direction, and (c) an entirely different profile of proteins moved in the anterograde vs. retrograde direction. This novel experimental approach to axonal transport, which is independent of de novo protein synthesis, provided a unique view of slow anterograde transport, and particularly of retrograde transport of endogenous proteins. A large quantity of a 68,000 mol wt proteins, moving at approximately 3-6 mm/day, dominated the retograde transport profile. [3H]N-SP, therefore, represents a new and unique "vital stain" which may find many applications in cell biology. PMID:6154709

  3. Target-Derived Neurotrophins Coordinate Transcription and Transport of Bclw to Prevent Axonal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Cosker, Katharina E.; Pazyra-Murphy, Maria F.; Fenstermacher, Sara J.

    2013-01-01

    Establishment of neuronal circuitry depends on both formation and refinement of neural connections. During this process, target-derived neurotrophins regulate both transcription and translation to enable selective axon survival or elimination. However, it is not known whether retrograde signaling pathways that control transcription are coordinated with neurotrophin-regulated actions that transpire in the axon. Here we report that target-derived neurotrophins coordinate transcription of the antiapoptotic gene bclw with transport of bclw mRNA to the axon, and thereby prevent axonal degeneration in rat and mouse sensory neurons. We show that neurotrophin stimulation of nerve terminals elicits new bclw transcripts that are immediately transported to the axons and translated into protein. Bclw interacts with Bax and suppresses the caspase6 apoptotic cascade that fosters axonal degeneration. The scope of bclw regulation at the levels of transcription, transport, and translation provides a mechanism whereby sustained neurotrophin stimulation can be integrated over time, so that axonal survival is restricted to neurons connected within a stable circuit. PMID:23516285

  4. Target-derived neurotrophins coordinate transcription and transport of bclw to prevent axonal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Cosker, Katharina E; Pazyra-Murphy, Maria F; Fenstermacher, Sara J; Segal, Rosalind A

    2013-03-20

    Establishment of neuronal circuitry depends on both formation and refinement of neural connections. During this process, target-derived neurotrophins regulate both transcription and translation to enable selective axon survival or elimination. However, it is not known whether retrograde signaling pathways that control transcription are coordinated with neurotrophin-regulated actions that transpire in the axon. Here we report that target-derived neurotrophins coordinate transcription of the antiapoptotic gene bclw with transport of bclw mRNA to the axon, and thereby prevent axonal degeneration in rat and mouse sensory neurons. We show that neurotrophin stimulation of nerve terminals elicits new bclw transcripts that are immediately transported to the axons and translated into protein. Bclw interacts with Bax and suppresses the caspase6 apoptotic cascade that fosters axonal degeneration. The scope of bclw regulation at the levels of transcription, transport, and translation provides a mechanism whereby sustained neurotrophin stimulation can be integrated over time, so that axonal survival is restricted to neurons connected within a stable circuit.

  5. Impaired retrograde transport of axonal autophagosomes contributes to autophagic stress in Alzheimer’s disease neurons

    PubMed Central

    Tammineni, Prasad; Ye, Xuan; Feng, Tuancheng; Aikal, Daniyal; Cai, Qian

    2017-01-01

    Neurons face unique challenges of transporting nascent autophagic vacuoles (AVs) from distal axons toward the soma, where mature lysosomes are mainly located. Autophagy defects have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). However, the mechanisms underlying altered autophagy remain unknown. Here, we demonstrate that defective retrograde transport contributes to autophagic stress in AD axons. Amphisomes predominantly accumulate at axonal terminals of mutant hAPP mice and AD patient brains. Amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers associate with AVs in AD axons and interact with dynein motors. This interaction impairs dynein recruitment to amphisomes through competitive interruption of dynein-Snapin motor-adaptor coupling, thus immobilizing them in distal axons. Consistently, deletion of Snapin in mice causes AD-like axonal autophagic stress, whereas overexpressing Snapin in hAPP neurons reduces autophagic accumulation at presynaptic terminals by enhancing AV retrograde transport. Altogether, our study provides new mechanistic insight into AD-associated autophagic stress, thus establishing a foundation for ameliorating axonal pathology in AD. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21776.001 PMID:28085665

  6. Herpes Simplex Virus Capsids Are Transported in Neuronal Axons without an Envelope Containing the Viral Glycoproteins▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Aleksandra; Wisner, Todd W.; Johnson, David C.

    2006-01-01

    Electron micrographic studies of neuronal axons have produced contradictory conclusions on how alphaherpesviruses are transported from neuron cell bodies to axon termini. Some reports have described unenveloped capsids transported on axonal microtubules with separate transport of viral glycoproteins within membrane vesicles. Others have observed enveloped virions in proximal and distal axons. We characterized transport of herpes simplex virus (HSV) in human and rat neurons by staining permeabilized neurons with capsid- and glycoprotein-specific antibodies. Deconvolution microscopy was used to view 200-nm sections of axons. HSV glycoproteins were very rarely associated with capsids (3 to 5%) and vice versa. Instances of glycoprotein/capsid overlap frequently involved nonconcentric puncta and regions of axons with dense viral protein concentrations. Similarly, HSV capsids expressing a VP26-green fluorescent protein fusion protein (VP26/GFP) did not stain with antiglycoprotein antibodies. Live-cell imaging experiments with VP26/GFP-labeled capsids demonstrated that capsids moved in a saltatory fashion, and very few stalled for more than 1 to 2 min. To determine if capsids could be transported down axons without glycoproteins, neurons were treated with brefeldin A (BFA). However, BFA blocked both capsid and glycoprotein transport. Glycoproteins were transported into and down axons normally when neurons were infected with an HSV mutant that produces immature capsids that are retained in the nucleus. We concluded that HSV capsids are transported in axons without an envelope containing viral glycoproteins, with glycoproteins transported separately and assembling with capsids at axon termini. PMID:16971450

  7. Molecular characterization of a trafficking organelle: dissecting the axonal paths of calsyntenin-1 transport vesicles.

    PubMed

    Steuble, Martin; Gerrits, Bertran; Ludwig, Alexander; Mateos, José María; Diep, Tu-My; Tagaya, Mitsuo; Stephan, Alexander; Schätzle, Philipp; Kunz, Beat; Streit, Peter; Sonderegger, Peter

    2010-11-01

    Kinesin motors play crucial roles in the delivery of membranous cargo to its destination and thus for the establishment and maintenance of cellular polarization. Recently, calsyntenin-1 was identified as a cargo-docking protein for Kinesin-1-mediated axonal transport of tubulovesicular organelles along axons of central nervous system neurons. To further define the function of calsyntenin-1, we immunoisolated calsyntenin-1 organelles from murine brain homogenates and determined their proteome by MS. We found that calsyntenin-1 organelles are endowed with components of the endosomal trafficking machinery and contained the β-amyloid precursor protein (APP). Detailed biochemical analyses of calsyntenin-1 immunoisolates in conjunction with immunocytochemical colocalization studies with cultured hippocampal neurons, using endosomal marker proteins for distinct subcompartments of the endosomal pathways, indicated that neuronal axons contain at least two distinct, nonoverlapping calsyntenin-1-containing transport packages: one characterized as early-endosomal, APP positive, the other as recycling-endosomal, APP negative. We postulate that calsyntenin-1 acts as a general mediator of anterograde axonal transportation of endosomal vesicles. In this role, calsyntenin-1 may actively contribute to axonal growth and pathfinding in the developing as well as to the maintenance of neuronal polarity in the adult nervous system; further, it may actively contribute to the stabilization of APP during its anterograde axonal trajectory.

  8. Effects of p-xylene inhalation on axonal transport in the rat retinal ganglion cells

    SciTech Connect

    Padilla, S.S.; Lyerly, D.P. )

    1989-12-01

    Although the solvent xylene is suspected of producing nervous system dysfunction in animals and humans, little is known regarding the neurochemical consequences of xylene inhalation. The intent of this study was to determine the effect of intermittent, acute, and subchronic p-xylene exposure on the axonal transport of proteins and glycoproteins within the rat retinofugal tract. A number of different exposure regimens were tested ranging from 50 ppm for a single 6-hr exposure to 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for a total of 8 exposure days. Immediately following removal from the inhalation chambers rats were injected intraocularly with (35S)methionine and (3H)fucose (to label retinal proteins and glycoproteins, respectively) and the axonal transport of labeled macromolecules to axons (optic nerve and optic tract) and nerve endings (lateral geniculate body and superior colliculus) was examined 20 hr after precursor injection. Only relatively severe exposure regimens (i.e., 800 or 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for 1.5 weeks) produced significant reductions in axonal transport; there was a moderate reduction in the axonal transport of 35S-labeled proteins in the 800-ppm-treated group which was more widespread in the 1600 ppm-treated group. Transport of 3H-labeled glycoproteins was less affected. Assessment of retinal metabolism immediately after isotope injection indicated that the rate of precursor uptake was not reduced in either treatment group. Furthermore, rapid transport was still substantially reduced in animals exposed to 1600 ppm p-xylene and allowed a 13-day withdrawal period. These data indicate that p-xylene inhalation decreases rapid axonal transport supplied to the projections of the rat retinal ganglion cells immediately after cessation of inhalation exposure and that this decreased transport is still apparent 13 days after the last exposure.

  9. Redistribution of proteins of fast axonal transport following administration of beta,beta'-iminodipropionitrile: a quantitative autoradiographic study

    PubMed Central

    1982-01-01

    Beta,beta'-iminodipropionitrile (IDPN) produces a rearrangement of axoplasmic organelles with displacement of microtubules, smooth endoplasmic reticulum, and mitochondria toward the center and of neurofilaments toward the periphery of the axon, whereas the rate of the fast component of axonal transport is unchanged. Separation of microtubules and neurofilaments makes the IDPN axons an excellent model for study of the role of these two organelles in axonal transport. The cross-sectional distribution of [3H]-labeled proteins moving with the front of the fast transport was analyzed by quantitative electron microscopic autoradiography in sciatic nerves of IDPN-treated and control rats, 6 h after injection of a 1:1 mixture of [3H]-proline and [3H]-lysine into lumbar ventral horns. In IDPN axons most of the transported [3H] proteins were located in the central region with microtubules, smooth endoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria, whereas few or none were in the periphery with neurofilaments. In control axons the [3H]-labeled proteins were uniformly distributed within the axoplasm. It is concluded that in fast axonal transport: (a) neurofilaments play no primary role; (b) the normal architecture of the axonal cytoskeleton and the normal cross-sectional distribution of transported materials are not indispensable for the maintenance of a normal rate of transport. The present findings are consistent with the models of fast transport that envision microtubules as the key organelles in providing directionality and propulsive force to the fast component of axonal transport. PMID:6183280

  10. Tri-partite complex for axonal transport drug delivery achieves pharmacological effect

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Targeted delivery of pharmaceutical agents into selected populations of CNS (Central Nervous System) neurons is an extremely compelling goal. Currently, systemic methods are generally used for delivery of pain medications, anti-virals for treatment of dermatomal infections, anti-spasmodics, and neuroprotectants. Systemic side effects or undesirable effects on parts of the CNS that are not involved in the pathology limit efficacy and limit clinical utility for many classes of pharmaceuticals. Axonal transport from the periphery offers a possible selective route, but there has been little progress towards design of agents that can accomplish targeted delivery via this intraneural route. To achieve this goal, we developed a tripartite molecular construction concept involving an axonal transport facilitator molecule, a polymer linker, and a large number of drug molecules conjugated to the linker, then sought to evaluate its neurobiology and pharmacological behavior. Results We developed chemical synthesis methodologies for assembling these tripartite complexes using a variety of axonal transport facilitators including nerve growth factor, wheat germ agglutinin, and synthetic facilitators derived from phage display work. Loading of up to 100 drug molecules per complex was achieved. Conjugation methods were used that allowed the drugs to be released in active form inside the cell body after transport. Intramuscular and intradermal injection proved effective for introducing pharmacologically effective doses into selected populations of CNS neurons. Pharmacological efficacy with gabapentin in a paw withdrawal latency model revealed a ten fold increase in half life and a 300 fold decrease in necessary dose relative to systemic administration for gabapentin when the drug was delivered by axonal transport using the tripartite vehicle. Conclusion Specific targeting of selected subpopulations of CNS neurons for drug delivery by axonal transport holds great promise

  11. CAR-associated vesicular transport of an adenovirus in motor neuron axons.

    PubMed

    Salinas, Sara; Bilsland, Lynsey G; Henaff, Daniel; Weston, Anne E; Keriel, Anne; Schiavo, Giampietro; Kremer, Eric J

    2009-05-01

    Axonal transport is responsible for the movement of signals and cargo between nerve termini and cell bodies. Pathogens also exploit this pathway to enter and exit the central nervous system. In this study, we characterised the binding, endocytosis and axonal transport of an adenovirus (CAV-2) that preferentially infects neurons. Using biochemical, cell biology, genetic, ultrastructural and live-cell imaging approaches, we show that interaction with the neuronal membrane correlates with coxsackievirus and adenovirus receptor (CAR) surface expression, followed by endocytosis involving clathrin. In axons, long-range CAV-2 motility was bidirectional with a bias for retrograde transport in nonacidic Rab7-positive organelles. Unexpectedly, we found that CAR was associated with CAV-2 vesicles that also transported cargo as functionally distinct as tetanus toxin, neurotrophins, and their receptors. These results suggest that a single axonal transport carrier is capable of transporting functionally distinct cargoes that target different membrane compartments in the soma. We propose that CAV-2 transport is dictated by an innate trafficking of CAR, suggesting an unsuspected function for this adhesion protein during neuronal homeostasis.

  12. Ultramicroscopy Reveals Axonal Transport Impairments in Cortical Motor Neurons at Prion Disease

    PubMed Central

    Ermolayev, Vladimir; Friedrich, Mike; Nozadze, Revaz; Cathomen, Toni; Klein, Michael A.; Harms, Gregory S.; Flechsig, Eckhard

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The functional imaging of neuronal circuits of the central nervous system is crucial for phenotype screenings or investigations of defects in neurodegenerative disorders. Current techniques yield either low penetration depth, yield poor resolution, or are restricted by the age of the animals. Here, we present a novel ultramicroscopy protocol for fluorescence imaging and three-dimensional reconstruction in the central nervous system of adult mice. In combination with tracing as a functional assay for axonal transport, retrogradely labeled descending motor neurons were visualized with >4 mm penetration depth. The analysis of the motor cortex shortly before the onset of clinical prion disease revealed that >80% neurons have functional impairments in axonal transport. Our study provides evidence that prion disease is associated with severe axonal transport defects in the cortical motor neurons and suggests a novel mechanism for prion-mediated neurodegeneration. PMID:19383482

  13. A simple method for imaging axonal transport in ageing neurons using the adult Drosophila wing

    PubMed Central

    Vagnoni, Alessio; Bullock, Simon L.

    2016-01-01

    There is growing interest in the link between axonal cargo transport and age-associated neuronal dysfunction. Studying axonal transport in neurons of adult animals requires intravital or ex vivo imaging approaches, which are laborious and expensive in vertebrate models. We describe simple, non-invasive procedures for imaging cargo motility within axons using sensory neurons of the translucent Drosophila wing. A key aspect is a method for mounting the intact fly that allows detailed imaging of transport in wing neurons. Coupled with existing genetic tools in Drosophila, this is a tractable system for studying axonal transport over the lifespan of an animal and thus for characterising the relationship between cargo dynamics, neuronal ageing and disease. Preparation of a sample for imaging takes approximately 5 minutes, with transport typically filmed for 2–3 minutes per wing. We also document procedures for quantifying transport parameters from the acquired images and describe how the protocol can be adapted to study other cell biological processes in ageing neurons. PMID:27560175

  14. A simple method for imaging axonal transport in aging neurons using the adult Drosophila wing.

    PubMed

    Vagnoni, Alessio; Bullock, Simon L

    2016-09-01

    There is growing interest in the link between axonal cargo transport and age-associated neuronal dysfunction. The study of axonal transport in neurons of adult animals requires intravital or ex vivo imaging approaches, which are laborious and expensive in vertebrate models. We describe simple, noninvasive procedures for imaging cargo motility within axons using sensory neurons of the translucent Drosophila wing. A key aspect is a method for mounting the intact fly that allows detailed imaging of transport in wing neurons. Coupled with existing genetic tools in Drosophila, this is a tractable system for studying axonal transport over the life span of an animal and thus for characterization of the relationship between cargo dynamics, neuronal aging and disease. Preparation of a sample for imaging takes ∼5 min, with transport typically filmed for 2-3 min per wing. We also document procedures for the quantification of transport parameters from the acquired images and describe how the protocol can be adapted to study other cell biological processes in aging neurons.

  15. Kinesin I transports tetramerized Kv3 channels through the axon initial segment via direct binding.

    PubMed

    Xu, Mingxuan; Gu, Yuanzheng; Barry, Joshua; Gu, Chen

    2010-11-24

    Precise targeting of various voltage-gated ion channels to proper membrane domains is crucial for their distinct roles in neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. How each channel protein is transported within the cytoplasm is poorly understood. Here, we report that KIF5/kinesin I transports Kv3.1 voltage-gated K(+) (Kv) channels through the axon initial segment (AIS) via direct binding. First, we have identified a novel interaction between Kv3.1 and KIF5, confirmed by immunoprecipitation from mouse brain lysates and by pull-down assays with exogenously expressed proteins. The interaction is mediated by a direct binding between the Kv3.1 N-terminal T1 domain and a conserved region in KIF5 tail domains, in which proper T1 tetramerization is crucial. Overexpression of this region of KIF5B markedly reduces axonal levels of Kv3.1bHA. In mature hippocampal neurons, endogenous Kv3.1b and KIF5 colocalize. Suppressing the endogenous KIF5B level by RNA interference significantly reduces the Kv3.1b axonal level. Furthermore, mutating the Zn(2+)-binding site within T1 markedly decreases channel axonal targeting and forward trafficking, likely through disrupting T1 tetramerization and hence eliminating the binding to KIF5 tail. The mutation also alters channel activity. Interestingly, coexpression of the YFP (yellow fluorescent protein)-tagged KIF5B assists dendritic Kv3.1a and even mutants with a faulty axonal targeting motif to penetrate the AIS. Finally, fluorescently tagged Kv3.1 channels colocalize and comove with KIF5B along axons revealed by two-color time-lapse imaging. Our findings suggest that the binding to KIF5 ensures properly assembled and functioning Kv3.1 channels to be transported into axons.

  16. Kinesin I transports tetramerized Kv3 channels through the axon initial segment via direct binding

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Mingxuan; Gu, Yuanzheng; Barry, Joshua; Gu, Chen

    2010-01-01

    Precise targeting of various voltage-gated ion channels to proper membrane domains is crucial for their distinct roles in neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. How each channel protein is transported within the cytoplasm is poorly understood. Here we report that KIF5/kinesin I transports Kv3.1 voltage-gated K+ (Kv) channels through the axon initial segment (AIS) via direct binding. First, we have identified a novel interaction between Kv3.1 and KIF5, confirmed by immunoprecipitation from mouse brain lysates and by pull down assays with exogenously-expressed proteins. The interaction is mediated by a direct binding between the Kv3.1 N-terminal T1 domain and a conserved region in KIF5 tail domains, in which proper T1 tetramerization is crucial. Over-expression of this region of KIF5B markedly reduces axonal levels of Kv3.1bHA. In mature hippocampal neurons, endogenous Kv3.1b and KIF5 colocalize. Suppressing the endogenous KIF5B level by siRNA significantly reduces the Kv3.1b axonal level. Furthermore, mutating the Zn2+-binding site within T1 markedly decreases channel axonal targeting and forward trafficking, likely through disrupting T1 tetramerization and hence eliminating the binding to KIF5 tail. The mutation also alters channel activity. Interestingly, co-expression of the YFP-tagged KIF5B assists dendritic Kv3.1a and even mutants with a faulty axonal targeting motif to penetrate the AIS. Finally, fluorescently tagged Kv3.1 channels co-localize and co-move with KIF5B along axons revealed by two-color time-lapse imaging. Our findings suggest that the binding to KIF5 ensures properly assembled and functioning Kv3.1 channels to be transported into axons. PMID:21106837

  17. Tracking Quantum-Dot labeled neurotropic factors transport along primary neuronal axons in compartmental microfluidic chambers.

    PubMed

    Gluska, Shani; Chein, Michael; Rotem, Nimrod; Ionescu, Ariel; Perlson, Eran

    2016-01-01

    Neurons are highly polarized cells, with very long axons. Neurotrophic factors like the neuronal growth factor (NGF) are secreted from neuronal targets to promote neuron survival and proper function. These neurotrophic factors must undergo retrograde axonal transport towards the cell body, wherein they initiate signaling pathways important for neurons' various functions and overall health. This process of long-distance axonal signaling is conducted by the dynein motor protein, which transmits signaling endosomes of ligand-receptor complexes retrogradely along microtubule tracks. Here we describe step by step the use of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) compartmentalized microfluidic chambers for tracking axonal transport of trophic factors, with a focus on labeled NGF. We describe in detail how to fabricate the molds, assemble the PDMS platform, plate neurons and image, as well as analyze NGF transport along the axon. This method is useful for studying molecular communication mechanisms within the neuron's different compartments as well as between the neuron and its diverse microenvironments, both in health and under pathological conditions.

  18. Tau reduction prevents Aβ-induced axonal transport deficits by blocking activation of GSK3β

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Jordan C.; Fomenko, Vira; Miyamoto, Takashi; Suberbielle, Elsa; Knox, Joseph A.; Ho, Kaitlyn; Kim, Daniel H.; Yu, Gui-Qiu

    2015-01-01

    Axonal transport deficits in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are attributed to amyloid β (Aβ) peptides and pathological forms of the microtubule-associated protein tau. Genetic ablation of tau prevents neuronal overexcitation and axonal transport deficits caused by recombinant Aβ oligomers. Relevance of these findings to naturally secreted Aβ and mechanisms underlying tau’s enabling effect are unknown. Here we demonstrate deficits in anterograde axonal transport of mitochondria in primary neurons from transgenic mice expressing familial AD-linked forms of human amyloid precursor protein. We show that these deficits depend on Aβ1–42 production and are prevented by tau reduction. The copathogenic effect of tau did not depend on its microtubule binding, interactions with Fyn, or potential role in neuronal development. Inhibition of neuronal activity, N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor function, or glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β) activity or expression also abolished Aβ-induced transport deficits. Tau ablation prevented Aβ-induced GSK3β activation. Thus, tau allows Aβ oligomers to inhibit axonal transport through activation of GSK3β, possibly by facilitating aberrant neuronal activity. PMID:25963821

  19. Relay of retrograde synaptogenic signals through axonal transport of BMP receptors

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Rebecca B.; Machamer, James B.; Kim, Nam Chul; Hays, Thomas S.; Marqués, Guillermo

    2012-01-01

    Summary Neuronal function depends on the retrograde relay of growth and survival signals from the synaptic terminal, where the neuron interacts with its targets, to the nucleus, where gene transcription is regulated. Activation of the Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP) pathway at the Drosophila larval neuromuscular junction results in nuclear accumulation of the phosphorylated form of the transcription factor Mad in the motoneuron nucleus. This in turn regulates transcription of genes that control synaptic growth. How BMP signaling at the synaptic terminal is relayed to the cell body and nucleus of the motoneuron to regulate transcription is unknown. We show that the BMP receptors are endocytosed at the synaptic terminal and transported retrogradely along the axon. Furthermore, this transport is dependent on BMP pathway activity, as it decreases in the absence of ligand or receptors. We further demonstrate that receptor traffic is severely impaired when Dynein motors are inhibited, a condition that has previously been shown to block BMP pathway activation. In contrast to these results, we find no evidence for transport of phosphorylated Mad along the axons, and axonal traffic of Mad is not affected in mutants defective in BMP signaling or retrograde transport. These data support a model in which complexes of activated BMP receptors are actively transported along the axon towards the cell body to relay the synaptogenic signal, and that phosphorylated Mad at the synaptic terminal and cell body represent two distinct molecular populations. PMID:22573823

  20. HIV Glycoprotein Gp120 Impairs Fast Axonal Transport by Activating Tak1 Signaling Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Berth, Sarah H.; Mesnard-Hoaglin, Nichole; Wang, Bin; Kim, Hajwa; Song, Yuyu; Sapar, Maria; Morfini, Gerardo

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neuropathies are the most common neurological complication of HIV. Of these, distal sensory polyneuropathy (DSP) is directly caused by HIV infection and characterized by length-dependent axonal degeneration of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Mechanisms for axonal degeneration in DSP remain unclear, but recent experiments revealed that the HIV glycoprotein gp120 is internalized and localized within axons of DRG neurons. Based on these findings, we investigated whether intra-axonal gp120 might impair fast axonal transport (FAT), a cellular process critical for appropriate maintenance of the axonal compartment. Significantly, we found that gp120 severely impaired both anterograde and retrograde FAT. Providing a mechanistic basis for these effects, pharmacological experiments revealed an involvement of various phosphotransferases in this toxic effect, including members of mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways (Tak-1, p38, and c-Jun N-terminal Kinase (JNK)), inhibitor of kappa-B-kinase 2 (IKK2), and PP1. Biochemical experiments and axonal outgrowth assays in cell lines and primary cultures extended these findings. Impairments in neurite outgrowth in DRG neurons by gp120 were rescued using a Tak-1 inhibitor, implicating a Tak-1 mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway in gp120 neurotoxicity. Taken together, these observations indicate that kinase-based impairments in FAT represent a novel mechanism underlying gp120 neurotoxicity consistent with the dying-back degeneration seen in DSP. Targeting gp120-based impairments in FAT with specific kinase inhibitors might provide a novel therapeutic strategy to prevent axonal degeneration in DSP. PMID:27872270

  1. Axonal Segregation and Role of the Vesicular Glutamate Transporter VGLUT3 in Serotonin Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Voisin, Aurore N.; Mnie-Filali, Ouissame; Giguère, Nicolas; Fortin, Guillaume M.; Vigneault, Erika; El Mestikawy, Salah; Descarries, Laurent; Trudeau, Louis-Éric

    2016-01-01

    A subset of monoamine neurons releases glutamate as a cotransmitter due to presence of the vesicular glutamate transporters VGLUT2 or VGLUT3. In addition to mediating vesicular loading of glutamate, it has been proposed that VGLUT3 enhances serotonin (5-HT) vesicular loading by the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT2) in 5-HT neurons. In dopamine (DA) neurons, glutamate appears to be released from specialized subsets of terminals and it may play a developmental role, promoting neuronal growth and survival. The hypothesis of a similar developmental role and axonal localization of glutamate co-release in 5-HT neurons has not been directly examined. Using postnatal mouse raphe neurons in culture, we first observed that in contrast to 5-HT itself, other phenotypic markers of 5-HT axon terminals such as the 5-HT reuptake transporter (SERT) show a more restricted localization in the axonal arborization. Interestingly, only a subset of SERT- and 5-HT-positive axonal varicosities expressed VGLUT3, with SERT and VGLUT3 being mostly segregated. Using VGLUT3 knockout mice, we found that deletion of this transporter leads to reduced survival of 5-HT neurons in vitro and also decreased the density of 5-HT-immunoreactivity in terminals in the dorsal striatum and dorsal part of the hippocampus in the intact brain. Our results demonstrate that raphe 5-HT neurons express SERT and VGLUT3 mainly in segregated axon terminals and that VGLUT3 regulates the vulnerability of these neurons and the neurochemical identity of their axonal domain, offering new perspectives on the functional connectivity of a cell population involved in anxiety disorders and depression. PMID:27147980

  2. Axonopathy is associated with complex axonal transport defects in a model of multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Kreutzer, Mihaela; Seehusen, Frauke; Kreutzer, Robert; Pringproa, Kidsadagorn; Kummerfeld, Maren; Claus, Peter; Deschl, Ulrich; Kalkul, Arno; Beineke, Andreas; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Ulrich, Reiner

    2012-07-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory and neurodegenerative disease characterized by myelin and axonal pathology. In a viral model of MS, we tested whether axonopathy initiation and development are based on an impaired transport of neurofilaments. Spinal cords of Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV)-infected and mock-infected mice and TMEV infected neuroblastoma N1E-115 cells were analyzed by microarray analysis, light microscopy and electron and laser confocal microscopy. In vivo axonal accumulation of non-phosphorylated neurofilaments after TMEV infection revealed a temporal development caused by the impairments of the axonal traffic consisting of the downregulation of kinesin family member 5A, dynein cytoplasmic heavy chain 1, tau-1 and β-tubulin III expression. In addition, alterations of the protein metabolism were also noticed. In vitro, the TMEV-infected N1E-115 cells developed tandem-repeated swellings similar to in vivo alterations. Furthermore, the hypothesis of an underlying axonal self-destruction program involving nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide depletion was supported by molecular findings. The obtained data indicate that neurofilament accumulation in TME is mainly the result of dysregulation of their axonal transport machinery and impairment of neurofilament phosphorylation and protein metabolism. The present findings allow a more precise understanding of the complex interactions responsible for initiation and development of axonopathies in inflammatory degenerative diseases.

  3. Glycine Transporter-1 Inhibition Promotes Striatal Axon Sprouting via NMDA Receptors in Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Castagna, Candace; Mrejeru, Ana; Lizardi-Ortiz, José E.; Klein, Zoe; Lindsley, Craig W.

    2013-01-01

    NMDA receptor activity is involved in shaping synaptic connections throughout development and adulthood. We recently reported that brief activation of NMDA receptors on cultured ventral midbrain dopamine neurons enhanced their axon growth rate and induced axonal branching. To test whether this mechanism was relevant to axon regrowth in adult animals, we examined the reinnervation of dorsal striatum following nigral dopamine neuron loss induced by unilateral intrastriatal injections of the toxin 6-hydroxydopamine. We used a pharmacological approach to enhance NMDA receptor-dependent signaling by treatment with an inhibitor of glycine transporter-1 that elevates levels of extracellular glycine, a coagonist required for NMDA receptor activation. All mice displayed sprouting of dopaminergic axons from spared fibers in the ventral striatum to the denervated dorsal striatum at 7 weeks post-lesion, but the reinnervation in mice treated for 4 weeks with glycine uptake inhibitor was approximately twice as dense as in untreated mice. The treated mice also displayed higher levels of striatal dopamine and a complete recovery from lateralization in a test of sensorimotor behavior. We confirmed that the actions of glycine uptake inhibition on reinnervation and behavioral recovery required NMDA receptors in dopamine neurons using targeted deletion of the NR1 NMDA receptor subunit in dopamine neurons. Glycine transport inhibitors promote functionally relevant sprouting of surviving dopamine axons and could provide clinical treatment for disorders such as Parkinson's disease. PMID:24133278

  4. Fast axonal transport of the proteasome complex depends on membrane interaction and molecular motor function.

    PubMed

    Otero, Maria G; Alloatti, Matías; Cromberg, Lucas E; Almenar-Queralt, Angels; Encalada, Sandra E; Pozo Devoto, Victorio M; Bruno, Luciana; Goldstein, Lawrence S B; Falzone, Tomás L

    2014-04-01

    Protein degradation by the ubiquitin-proteasome system in neurons depends on the correct delivery of the proteasome complex. In neurodegenerative diseases, aggregation and accumulation of proteins in axons link transport defects with degradation impairments; however, the transport properties of proteasomes remain unknown. Here, using in vivo experiments, we reveal the fast anterograde transport of assembled and functional 26S proteasome complexes. A high-resolution tracking system to follow fluorescent proteasomes revealed three types of motion: actively driven proteasome axonal transport, diffusive behavior in a viscoelastic axonema and proteasome-confined motion. We show that active proteasome transport depends on motor function because knockdown of the KIF5B motor subunit resulted in impairment of the anterograde proteasome flux and the density of segmental velocities. Finally, we reveal that neuronal proteasomes interact with intracellular membranes and identify the coordinated transport of fluorescent proteasomes with synaptic precursor vesicles, Golgi-derived vesicles, lysosomes and mitochondria. Taken together, our results reveal fast axonal transport as a new mechanism of proteasome delivery that depends on membrane cargo 'hitch-hiking' and the function of molecular motors. We further hypothesize that defects in proteasome transport could promote abnormal protein clearance in neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. Effect of MSH/ACTH peptides on fast axonal transport in intact and regenerating sciatic nerves

    SciTech Connect

    Crescitelli, L.A.

    1985-01-01

    Fast axonal transport was examined in intact rats treated with ACTH 4-10 or ACTH 4-9 (ORG 2766), hypophysectomized rats, adrenalectomized rats, and in ACTH 4-10 treated rats with crushed regenerating sciatic nerves by injecting /sup 3/H-leucine into the ventral horn region of the spinal cord. The distance traveled by the transported activity along the sciatic nerve and the rate of fast axonal transport were not significantly altered as a result of treatment with ACTH 4-10, ACTH 4-9 (ORG 2766), hypophysectomy, or adrenalectomy. Treatment with ACTH 4-9 (ORG 2766) at concentrations of 1 ..mu..g/Kg /day and 10 ..mu..g/Kg/day caused significant reductions (62% and 64% respectively) in the crest height of the fast axonal transport curve as compared to 0.9% saline treated control animals. No significant differences were found in comparing the distance, rate, slope, or crest height of ACTH 4-10 treated animals with crushed regenerating (7 or 14d) sciatic nerves to control animals. In the group of animals in days, the amount of radiolabeled activity was significantly increased in the ACTH 4-10 treated animals as compared to control animals. The results indicate that during regeneration the peptide acts to prolong the initially high levels of synthetic activity which occur in regenerating axons.

  6. Berberine Attenuates Axonal Transport Impairment and Axonopathy Induced by Calyculin A in N2a Cells

    PubMed Central

    Abid, Morad Dirhem Naji; Yan, Huanhuan; Huang, Hao; Wan, Limin; Feng, Zuohua; Chen, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Berberine is a primary component of the most functional extracts of Coptidis rhizome used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. Recent reports indicate that Berberine has the potential to prevent and treat Alzheimer's disease (AD). The previous studies reported that Calyculin A (CA) impaired the axonal transport in neuroblastoma-2a (N2a) cells. Berberine attenuated tau hyperphosphorylation and cytotoxicity induced by CA. Our study aimed at investigating the effects of Berberine on the axonal transport impairment induced by CA in N2a cells. The results showed that Berberine could protect the cell from CA -induced toxicity in metabolism and viability, as well as hyperphosphorylation of tau and neurofilaments (NFs). Furthermore, Berberine could reverse CA-induced axonal transport impairment significantly. Berberine also partially reversed the phosphorylation of the catalytic subunit of PP-2A at Tyrosine 307, a crucial site negatively regulating the activity of PP-2A, and reduced the levels of malondialdehyde and the activity of superoxide dismutase, markers of oxidative stress, induced by CA. The present work for the first time demonstrates that Berberine may play a role in protecting against CA-induced axonal transport impairment by modulating the activity of PP-2A and oxidative stress. Our findings also suggest that Berberine may be a potential therapeutic drug for AD. PMID:24713870

  7. Novel RNA- and FMRP-binding protein TRF2-S regulates axonal mRNA transport and presynaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Peisu; Abdelmohsen, Kotb; Liu, Yong; Tominaga-Yamanaka, Kumiko; Yoon, Je-Hyun; Ioannis, Grammatikakis; Martindale, Jennifer L; Zhang, Yongqing; Becker, Kevin G; Yang, In Hong; Gorospe, Myriam; Mattson, Mark P

    2015-11-20

    Despite considerable evidence that RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) regulate mRNA transport and local translation in dendrites, roles for axonal RBPs are poorly understood. Here we demonstrate that a non-telomeric isoform of telomere repeat-binding factor 2 (TRF2-S) is a novel RBP that regulates axonal plasticity. TRF2-S interacts directly with target mRNAs to facilitate their axonal delivery. The process is antagonized by fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP). Distinct from the current RNA-binding model of FMRP, we show that FMRP occupies the GAR domain of TRF2-S protein to block the assembly of TRF2-S-mRNA complexes. Overexpressing TRF2-S and silencing FMRP promotes mRNA entry to axons and enhances axonal outgrowth and neurotransmitter release from presynaptic terminals. Our findings suggest a pivotal role for TRF2-S in an axonal mRNA localization pathway that enhances axon outgrowth and neurotransmitter release.

  8. Axonal transport of calmodulin: a physiologic approach to identification of long-term associations between proteins

    PubMed Central

    1981-01-01

    Calmodulin is a soluble, heat-stable protein which has been shown to modulate both membrane-bound and soluble enzymes, but relatively little has been known about the in vivo associations of calmodulin. A 17,000- dalton heat-stable protein was found to move in axonal transport in the guinea pig visual system with the proteins of slow component b (SCb; 2 mm/d) along with actin and the bulk of the soluble proteins of the axon. Co-electrophoresis of purified calmodulin and radioactively labeled SCb proteins in two dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) demonstrated the identity of the heat-stable SCb protein and calmodulin on the basis of pI, molecular weight, and anomalous migration in the presence of Ca2+-chelating agents. No proteins co-migrating with calmodulin in two-dimensional PAGE could be detected among the proteins of slow component a (SCa; 0.3 mm/d, microtubules and neurofilaments) or fast component (FC; 250 mm/d, membrane-associated proteins). We conclude that calmodulin is transported solely as part of the SCb complex of proteins, the axoplasmic matrix. Calmodulin moves in axonal transport independent of the movements of microtubules (SCa) and membranes (FC), which suggests that the interactions of calmodulin with these structures may represent a transient interaction between groups of proteins moving in axonal transport at different rates. Axonal transport has been shown to be an effective tool for the demonstration of long-term in vivo protein associations. PMID:6166619

  9. Loss of Fractalkine Signaling Exacerbates Axon Transport Dysfunction in a Chronic Model of Glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Breen, Kevin T.; Anderson, Sarah R.; Steele, Michael R.; Calkins, David J.; Bosco, Alejandra; Vetter, Monica L.

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegeneration in glaucoma results in decline and loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), and is associated with activation of myeloid cells such as microglia and macrophages. The chemokine fractalkine (FKN or Cx3cl1) mediates communication from neurons to myeloid cells. Signaling through its receptor Cx3cr1 has been implicated in multiple neurodegenerative diseases, but the effects on neuronal pathology are variable. Since it is unknown how FKN-mediated crosstalk influences RGC degeneration in glaucoma, we assessed this in a chronic mouse model, DBA/2J. We analyzed a DBA/2J substrain deficient in Cx3cr1, and compared compartmentalized RGC degeneration and myeloid cell responses to those in standard DBA/2J mice. We found that loss of FKN signaling exacerbates axon transport dysfunction, an early event in neurodegeneration, with a significant increase in RGCs with somal accumulation of the axonal protein phosphorylated neurofilament, and reduced retinal expression of genes involved in axon transport, Kif1b, and Atp8a2. There was no change in the loss of Brn3-positive RGCs, and no difference in the extent of damage to the proximal optic nerve, suggesting that the loss of fractalkine signaling primarily affects axon transport. Since Cx3cr1 is specifically expressed in myeloid cells, we assessed changes in retinal microglial number and activation, changes in gene expression, and the extent of macrophage infiltration. We found that loss of fractalkine signaling led to innate immune changes within the retina, including increased infiltration of peripheral macrophages and upregulated nitric oxide synthase-2 (Nos-2) expression in myeloid cells, which contributes to the production of NO and can promote axon transport deficits. In contrast, resident retinal microglia appeared unchanged either in number, morphology, or expression of the myeloid activation marker ionized calcium binding adaptor molecule 1 (Iba1). There was also no significant increase in the proinflammatory

  10. Non-Cell-Autonomous Regulation of Retrograde Motoneuronal Axonal Transport in an SBMA Mouse Model

    PubMed Central

    Halievski, Katherine; Kemp, Michael Q.; Breedlove, S. Marc; Miller, Kyle E.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Defects in axonal transport are seen in motoneuronal diseases, but how that impairment comes about is not well understood. In spinal bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA), a disorder linked to a CAG/polyglutamine repeat expansion in the androgen receptor (AR) gene, the disease-causing AR disrupts axonal transport by acting in both a cell-autonomous fashion in the motoneurons themselves, and in a non-cell-autonomous fashion in muscle. The non-cell-autonomous mechanism is suggested by data from a unique “myogenic” transgenic (TG) mouse model in which an AR transgene expressed exclusively in skeletal muscle fibers triggers an androgen-dependent SBMA phenotype, including defects in retrograde transport. However, motoneurons in this TG model retain the endogenous AR gene, leaving open the possibility that impairments in transport in this model also depend on ARs in the motoneurons themselves. To test whether non-cell-autonomous mechanisms alone can perturb retrograde transport, we generated male TG mice in which the endogenous AR allele has the testicular feminization mutation (Tfm) and, consequently, is nonfunctional. Males carrying the Tfm allele alone show no deficits in motor function or axonal transport, with or without testosterone treatment. However, when Tfm males carrying the myogenic transgene (Tfm/TG) are treated with testosterone, they develop impaired motor function and defects in retrograde transport, having fewer retrogradely labeled motoneurons and deficits in endosomal flux based on time-lapse video microscopy of living axons. These findings demonstrate that non-cell-autonomous disease mechanisms originating in muscle are sufficient to induce defects in retrograde transport in motoneurons. PMID:27517091

  11. Non-Cell-Autonomous Regulation of Retrograde Motoneuronal Axonal Transport in an SBMA Mouse Model.

    PubMed

    Halievski, Katherine; Kemp, Michael Q; Breedlove, S Marc; Miller, Kyle E; Jordan, Cynthia L

    2016-01-01

    Defects in axonal transport are seen in motoneuronal diseases, but how that impairment comes about is not well understood. In spinal bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA), a disorder linked to a CAG/polyglutamine repeat expansion in the androgen receptor (AR) gene, the disease-causing AR disrupts axonal transport by acting in both a cell-autonomous fashion in the motoneurons themselves, and in a non-cell-autonomous fashion in muscle. The non-cell-autonomous mechanism is suggested by data from a unique "myogenic" transgenic (TG) mouse model in which an AR transgene expressed exclusively in skeletal muscle fibers triggers an androgen-dependent SBMA phenotype, including defects in retrograde transport. However, motoneurons in this TG model retain the endogenous AR gene, leaving open the possibility that impairments in transport in this model also depend on ARs in the motoneurons themselves. To test whether non-cell-autonomous mechanisms alone can perturb retrograde transport, we generated male TG mice in which the endogenous AR allele has the testicular feminization mutation (Tfm) and, consequently, is nonfunctional. Males carrying the Tfm allele alone show no deficits in motor function or axonal transport, with or without testosterone treatment. However, when Tfm males carrying the myogenic transgene (Tfm/TG) are treated with testosterone, they develop impaired motor function and defects in retrograde transport, having fewer retrogradely labeled motoneurons and deficits in endosomal flux based on time-lapse video microscopy of living axons. These findings demonstrate that non-cell-autonomous disease mechanisms originating in muscle are sufficient to induce defects in retrograde transport in motoneurons.

  12. Phosphatidylserine Ameliorates Neurodegenerative Symptoms and Enhances Axonal Transport in a Mouse Model of Familial Dysautonomia

    PubMed Central

    Naftelberg, Shiran; Abramovitch, Ziv; Gluska, Shani; Yannai, Sivan; Joshi, Yuvraj; Donyo, Maya; Ben-Yaakov, Keren; Gradus, Tal; Zonszain, Jonathan; Farhy, Chen; Ashery-Padan, Ruth

    2016-01-01

    Familial Dysautonomia (FD) is a neurodegenerative disease in which aberrant tissue-specific splicing of IKBKAP exon 20 leads to reduction of IKAP protein levels in neuronal tissues. Here we generated a conditional knockout (CKO) mouse in which exon 20 of IKBKAP is deleted in the nervous system. The CKO FD mice exhibit developmental delays, sensory abnormalities, and less organized dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) with attenuated axons compared to wild-type mice. Furthermore, the CKO FD DRGs show elevated HDAC6 levels, reduced acetylated α-tubulin, unstable microtubules, and impairment of axonal retrograde transport of nerve growth factor (NGF). These abnormalities in DRG properties underlie neuronal degeneration and FD symptoms. Phosphatidylserine treatment decreased HDAC6 levels and thus increased acetylation of α-tubulin. Further PS treatment resulted in recovery of axonal outgrowth and enhanced retrograde axonal transport by decreasing histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) levels and thus increasing acetylation of α-tubulin levels. Thus, we have identified the molecular pathway that leads to neurodegeneration in FD and have demonstrated that phosphatidylserine treatment has the potential to slow progression of neurodegeneration. PMID:27997532

  13. Semaphorin3A-induced axonal transport mediated through phosphorylation of Axin-1 by GSK3β.

    PubMed

    Hida, Tomonobu; Nakamura, Fumio; Usui, Hiroshi; Takeuchi, Kan; Yamashita, Naoya; Goshima, Yoshio

    2015-02-19

    The establishment of neuronal polarity is necessary for proper neuronal wiring. Semaphorin3A (Sema3A), originally identified as a repulsive axon guidance molecule, exerts a wide variety of biological functions through signaling pathways including sequential phosphorylation of collapsin response mediator protein by cyclin-dependent kinase-5 (Cdk5) and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK3β). Sema3A acts on its receptor neuropilin-1 to regulate axonal transport. To delineate mechanism by which Sema3A induces axonal transport, we investigate whether GSK3β is involved in mediating Sema3A-induced axonal transport. 4-Benzyl-2-methyl-1,2,4-thiadiazolidine-3,5-dione, an inhibitor of GSK3β, suppressed Sema3A-induced antero- and retrograde axonal transport. Introduction of either GSK3β mutants, GSK3β-L128A or K85M, suppressed Sema3A-induced axonal transport. On the other hand, introduction of GSK3β-R96A did not affect the Sema3A effect, suggesting that unprimed substrates are primarily involved in Sema3A-induced axonal transport. Overexpression of a partial fragment of frequently rearranged in advanced T-cell lymphomas 1 (FRATtide), which interferes the interaction between GSK3β and Axis inhibitor-1 (Axin-1), also suppressed Sema3A-induced transport. siRNA knockdown of Axin-1, an unprimed substrate of GSK3β, suppressed Sema3A-induced antero- and retrograde axonal transport. These results indicate that GSK3β and Axin-1 are involved in Sema3A-induced bidirectional axonal transport. This finding should provide a clue for understanding of mechanisms of a wide variety of biological activities of Sema3A.

  14. Identification of an Axonal Kinesin-3 Motor for Fast Anterograde Vesicle Transport that Facilitates Retrograde Transport of Neuropeptides

    PubMed Central

    Barkus, Rosemarie V.; Klyachko, Olga; Horiuchi, Dai; Dickson, Barry J.

    2008-01-01

    A screen for genes required in Drosophila eye development identified an UNC-104/Kif1 related kinesin-3 microtubule motor. Analysis of mutants suggested that Drosophila Unc-104 has neuronal functions that are distinct from those of the classic anterograde axonal motor, kinesin-1. In particular, unc-104 mutations did not cause the distal paralysis and focal axonal swellings characteristic of kinesin-1 (Khc) mutations. However, like Khc mutations, unc-104 mutations caused motoneuron terminal atrophy. The distributions and transport behaviors of green fluorescent protein-tagged organelles in motor axons indicate that Unc-104 is a major contributor to the anterograde fast transport of neuropeptide-filled vesicles, that it also contributes to anterograde transport of synaptotagmin-bearing vesicles, and that it contributes little or nothing to anterograde transport of mitochondria, which are transported primarily by Khc. Remarkably, unc-104 mutations inhibited retrograde runs by neurosecretory vesicles but not by the other two organelles. This suggests that Unc-104, a member of an anterograde kinesin subfamily, contributes to an organelle-specific dynein-driven retrograde transport mechanism. PMID:17989365

  15. Investigating the Slow Axonal Transport of Neurofilaments: A Precursor for Optimal Neuronal Signaling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Christopher M.

    Neurofilaments are the intermediate filaments of neurons and are the most abundant structure of the neuronal cytoskeleton. Once synthesized within the cell body they are then transported throughout the axon along microtubule tracks, driven by the molecular motors kinesin and dynein. This movement is characterized by long pauses with no movement interrupted by infrequent bouts of rapid movement, resulting in an aggregate dense cytoskeletal structure, which serves to regulate an axon's shape and size. Curiously, the modulated kinetics of these polymers produces a very regular, yet non-uniform, morphology in myelinated axons which are composed of discretely spaced myelin-ensheathed segments that are separated by short constricted regions called "nodes of Ranvier". This unique design optimizes the conduction velocity of myelinated axons at minimal fiber size. Hence, neurofilaments regulate the axon caliber to optimize neuron function. The goal of this dissertation is to investigate the motile mechanism of neurofilament transport as well as the resulting electrophysiological effects that follow. We start by examining highly time-resolved kymograph images generated from recorded neurofilament movement via epifluorescence microscopy. Using kymograph analysis, edge detection algorithms, and pixel smoothing tactics, neurofilament trajectories are extracted and used to obtain statistical distributions for the characteristics of how these filaments move within cells. The results suggest that the observed intermittent and bidirectional motions of these filaments might be explained by a model in which dynein and kinesin motors attach to a single neurofilament cargo and interact through mechanical forces only (i.e. a "tug-of-war" model). We test this hypothesis by developing two discrete-state stochastic models for the kinetic cycles of kinesin and dynein, which are then incorporated into a separate stochastic model that represents the posed tug-of-war scenario. We then

  16. Alpha-Synuclein affects neurite morphology, autophagy, vesicle transport and axonal degeneration in CNS neurons

    PubMed Central

    Koch, J C; Bitow, F; Haack, J; d'Hedouville, Z; Zhang, J-N; Tönges, L; Michel, U; Oliveira, L M A; Jovin, T M; Liman, J; Tatenhorst, L; Bähr, M; Lingor, P

    2015-01-01

    Many neuropathological and experimental studies suggest that the degeneration of dopaminergic terminals and axons precedes the demise of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra, which finally results in the clinical symptoms of Parkinson disease (PD). The mechanisms underlying this early axonal degeneration are, however, still poorly understood. Here, we examined the effects of overexpression of human wildtype alpha-synuclein (αSyn-WT), a protein associated with PD, and its mutant variants αSyn-A30P and -A53T on neurite morphology and functional parameters in rat primary midbrain neurons (PMN). Moreover, axonal degeneration after overexpression of αSyn-WT and -A30P was analyzed by live imaging in the rat optic nerve in vivo. We found that overexpression of αSyn-WT and of its mutants A30P and A53T impaired neurite outgrowth of PMN and affected neurite branching assessed by Sholl analysis in a variant-dependent manner. Surprisingly, the number of primary neurites per neuron was increased in neurons transfected with αSyn. Axonal vesicle transport was examined by live imaging of PMN co-transfected with EGFP-labeled synaptophysin. Overexpression of all αSyn variants significantly decreased the number of motile vesicles and decelerated vesicle transport compared with control. Macroautophagic flux in PMN was enhanced by αSyn-WT and -A53T but not by αSyn-A30P. Correspondingly, colocalization of αSyn and the autophagy marker LC3 was reduced for αSyn-A30P compared with the other αSyn variants. The number of mitochondria colocalizing with LC3 as a marker for mitophagy did not differ among the groups. In the rat optic nerve, both αSyn-WT and -A30P accelerated kinetics of acute axonal degeneration following crush lesion as analyzed by in vivo live imaging. We conclude that αSyn overexpression impairs neurite outgrowth and augments axonal degeneration, whereas axonal vesicle transport and autophagy are severely altered. PMID:26158517

  17. Functional Impact of Corticotropin-Releasing Factor Exposure on Tau Phosphorylation and Axon Transport.

    PubMed

    Le, Michelle H; Weissmiller, April M; Monte, Louise; Lin, Po Han; Hexom, Tia C; Natera, Orlangie; Wu, Chengbiao; Rissman, Robert A

    2016-01-01

    Stress exposure or increased levels of corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) induce hippocampal tau phosphorylation (tau-P) in rodent models, a process that is dependent on the type-1 CRF receptor (CRFR1). Although these preclinical studies on stress-induced tau-P provide mechanistic insight for epidemiological work that identifies stress as a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD), the actual impact of stress-induced tau-P on neuronal function remains unclear. To determine the functional consequences of stress-induced tau-P, we developed a novel mouse neuronal cell culture system to explore the impact of acute (0.5hr) and chronic (2hr) CRF treatment on tau-P and integral cell processes such as axon transport. Consistent with in vivo reports, we found that chronic CRF treatment increased tau-P levels and caused globular accumulations of phosphorylated tau in dendritic and axonal processes. Furthermore, while both acute and chronic CRF treatment led to significant reduction in CREB activation and axon transport of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), this was not the case with mitochondrial transport. Acute CRF treatment caused increased mitochondrial velocity and distance traveled in neurons, while chronic CRF treatment modestly decreased mitochondrial velocity and greatly increased distance traveled. These results suggest that transport of cellular energetics may take priority over growth factors during stress. Tau-P was required for these changes, as co-treatment of CRF with a GSK kinase inhibitor prevented CRF-induced tau-P and all axon transport changes. Collectively, our results provide mechanistic insight into the consequences of stress peptide-induced tau-P and provide an explanation for how chronic stress via CRF may lead to neuronal vulnerability in AD.

  18. Axonal-Transport-Mediated Gene Transduction in the Interior of Rat Bone

    PubMed Central

    Okabayashi, Toshitaka; Nakanishi, Kuniaki; Tsuchihara, Toyokazu; Arino, Hiroshi; Yoshihara, Yasuo; Tominaga, Susumu; Uenoyama, Maki; Suzuki, Shinya; Asagiri, Masataka; Nemoto, Koichi

    2010-01-01

    Background Gene transduction has been considered advantageous for the sustained delivery of proteins to specific target tissues. However, in the case of hard tissues, such as bone, local gene delivery remains problematic owing to anatomical accessibility limitations of the target sites. Methodology/Principal Findings Here, we evaluated the feasibility of exogenous gene transduction in the interior of bone via axonal transport following intramuscular administration of a nonviral vector. A high expression level of the transduced gene was achieved in the tibia ipsilateral to the injected tibialis anterior muscle, as well as in the ipsilateral sciatic nerve and dorsal root ganglia. In sciatic transection rats, the gene expression level was significantly lowered in bone. Conclusions/Significance These results suggest that axonal transport is critical for gene transduction. Our study may provide a basis for developing therapeutic methods for efficient gene delivery into hard tissues. PMID:20927397

  19. Tau isoforms imbalance impairs the axonal transport of the amyloid precursor protein in human neurons.

    PubMed

    Lacovich, Valentina; Espindola, Sonia L; Alloatti, Matías; Pozo Devoto, Victorio; Cromberg, Lucas; Čarná, Mária; Forte, Giancarlo; Gallo, Jean-Marc; Bruno, Luciana; Stokin, Gorazd B; Avale, M Elena; Falzone, Tomás L

    2016-11-11

    Tau, as a microtubule-associated protein, participates in key neuronal functions such as the regulation of microtubule dynamics, axonal transport and neurite outgrowth. Alternative splicing of exon 10 in the tau primary transcript gives rise to protein isoforms with three (3R) or four (4R) microtubule binding repeats. While tau isoforms are balanced in the normal adult human brain, imbalances in 3R:4R ratio have been tightly associated to the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative disorders, yet the underlying molecular mechanisms remain elusive. Several studies exploiting tau overexpression and/or mutations suggested that perturbations in tau metabolism impair axonal transport. Nevertheless, no physiological model has yet demonstrated the consequences of altering the endogenous relative content of tau isoforms over axonal transport regulation. Here we addressed this question using a trans-splicing strategy that allows modulating tau exon 10 inclusion/exclusion in differentiated human-derived neurons. Upon changes in 3R:4R tau relative content neurons showed no morphological changes, but live imaging studies revealed that the dynamics of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) were significantly impaired. Single trajectories analyses of the moving vesicles showed that predominance of 3R tau favored the anterograde movement of APP-vesicles, increasing anterograde run lengths and reducing retrograde runs and segmental velocities. Contrarely, the imbalance towards the 4R isoform promoted a retrograde bias by a significant reduction of anterograde velocities. These findings suggest that changes in 3R:4R tau ratio has an impact on the regulation of axonal transport and specifically in APP dynamics, which might link tau isoforms imbalances with APP abnormal metabolism in neurodegenerative processes.

  20. Tau Isoforms Imbalance Impairs the Axonal Transport of the Amyloid Precursor Protein in Human Neurons.

    PubMed

    Lacovich, Valentina; Espindola, Sonia L; Alloatti, Matías; Pozo Devoto, Victorio; Cromberg, Lucas E; Čarná, Mária E; Forte, Giancarlo; Gallo, Jean-Marc; Bruno, Luciana; Stokin, Gorazd B; Avale, M Elena; Falzone, Tomás L

    2017-01-04

    Tau, as a microtubule (MT)-associated protein, participates in key neuronal functions such as the regulation of MT dynamics, axonal transport, and neurite outgrowth. Alternative splicing of exon 10 in the tau primary transcript gives rise to protein isoforms with three (3R) or four (4R) MT binding repeats. Although tau isoforms are balanced in the normal adult human brain, imbalances in 3R:4R ratio have been tightly associated with the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative disorders, yet the underlying molecular mechanisms remain elusive. Several studies exploiting tau overexpression and/or mutations suggested that perturbations in tau metabolism impair axonal transport. Nevertheless, no physiological model has yet demonstrated the consequences of altering the endogenous relative content of tau isoforms over axonal transport regulation. Here, we addressed this issue using a trans-splicing strategy that allows modulating tau exon 10 inclusion/exclusion in differentiated human-derived neurons. Upon changes in 3R:4R tau relative content, neurons showed no morphological changes, but live imaging studies revealed that the dynamics of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) were significantly impaired. Single trajectory analyses of the moving vesicles showed that predominance of 3R tau favored the anterograde movement of APP vesicles, increasing anterograde run lengths and reducing retrograde runs and segmental velocities. Conversely, the imbalance toward the 4R isoform promoted a retrograde bias by a significant reduction of anterograde velocities. These findings suggest that changes in 3R:4R tau ratio has an impact on the regulation of axonal transport and specifically in APP dynamics, which might link tau isoform imbalances with APP abnormal metabolism in neurodegenerative processes.

  1. Release of axonally transported material from an in vitro amphibian sciatic nerve preparation

    SciTech Connect

    Snyder, R.E.

    1988-04-01

    The rapid axonal transport of a pulse of (35S)methionine-labelled material was used to study the release of transported material from amphibian nerve maintained in vitro. Following creation of a moving pulse of activity in a dorsal root ganglion-sciatic nerve preparation, the ganglion was removed and the nerve placed in a three-compartment tray, the section of nerve in the middle compartment containing no truncated branches (unbranched section). All three compartments were filled with a saline solution that in some studies contained nonradioactive methionine (1.0 mmol/L). Analysis of studies in which nonradioactive methionine was absent revealed that labelled material appeared in the bathing solution of the end compartments that contained truncated branches, but not in the solution of the middle (unbranched) compartment. The quantity of label released in the branched compartments was approximately 6% of that remaining in the corresponding section of nerve following an 18-20 h incubation period. However, when nonradioactive methionine was present, all compartments showed an additional activity in the bathing solution of approximately 10% of that remaining in the nerve. In another study in which a position-sensitive detector of ionizing radiation was used to monitor progress of the pulse, it was found that activity did not enter the bathing solution of a compartment prior to the pulse of activity. It is concluded that in the absence of methionine from the bathing solution, axonally transported material is released only from regions of nerve that contain severed axons; however, the presence of methionine allows transported material to be released from nerve containing intact axons. Ultrafiltration studies and thin-layer chromatography revealed the majority of material released to be of low-molecular weight (less than 30,000 daltons) and not free (35S)methionine.

  2. Inhibition of Fast Axonal Transport by Pathogenic SOD1 Involves Activation of p38 MAP Kinase

    PubMed Central

    Morfini, Gerardo A.; Bosco, Daryl A.; Brown, Hannah; Gatto, Rodolfo; Kaminska, Agnieszka; Song, Yuyu; Molla, Linda; Baker, Lisa; Marangoni, M. Natalia; Berth, Sarah; Tavassoli, Ehsan; Bagnato, Carolina; Tiwari, Ashutosh; Hayward, Lawrence J.; Pigino, Gustavo F.; Watterson, D. Martin; Huang, Chun-Fang; Banker, Gary; Brown, Robert H.; Brady, Scott T.

    2013-01-01

    Dying-back degeneration of motor neuron axons represents an established feature of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS) associated with superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutations, but axon-autonomous effects of pathogenic SOD1 remained undefined. Characteristics of motor neurons affected in FALS include abnormal kinase activation, aberrant neurofilament phosphorylation, and fast axonal transport (FAT) deficits, but functional relationships among these pathogenic events were unclear. Experiments in isolated squid axoplasm reveal that FALS-related SOD1 mutant polypeptides inhibit FAT through a mechanism involving a p38 mitogen activated protein kinase pathway. Mutant SOD1 activated neuronal p38 in mouse spinal cord, neuroblastoma cells and squid axoplasm. Active p38 MAP kinase phosphorylated kinesin-1, and this phosphorylation event inhibited kinesin-1. Finally, vesicle motility assays revealed previously unrecognized, isoform-specific effects of p38 on FAT. Axon-autonomous activation of the p38 pathway represents a novel gain of toxic function for FALS-linked SOD1 proteins consistent with the dying-back pattern of neurodegeneration characteristic of ALS. PMID:23776455

  3. Miro's N-terminal GTPase domain is required for transport of mitochondria into axons and dendrites.

    PubMed

    Babic, Milos; Russo, Gary J; Wellington, Andrea J; Sangston, Ryan M; Gonzalez, Migdalia; Zinsmaier, Konrad E

    2015-04-08

    Mitochondria are dynamically transported in and out of neuronal processes to maintain neuronal excitability and synaptic function. In higher eukaryotes, the mitochondrial GTPase Miro binds Milton/TRAK adaptor proteins linking microtubule motors to mitochondria. Here we show that Drosophila Miro (dMiro), which has previously been shown to be required for kinesin-driven axonal transport, is also critically required for the dynein-driven distribution of mitochondria into dendrites. In addition, we used the loss-of-function mutations dMiroT25N and dMiroT460N to determine the significance of dMiro's N-terminal and C-terminal GTPase domains, respectively. Expression of dMiroT25N in the absence of endogenous dMiro caused premature lethality and arrested development at a pupal stage. dMiroT25N accumulated mitochondria in the soma of larval motor and sensory neurons, and prevented their kinesin-dependent and dynein-dependent distribution into axons and dendrites, respectively. dMiroT25N mutant mitochondria also were severely fragmented and exhibited reduced kinesin and dynein motility in axons. In contrast, dMiroT460N did not impair viability, mitochondrial size, or the distribution of mitochondria. However, dMiroT460N reduced dynein motility during retrograde mitochondrial transport in axons. Finally, we show that substitutions analogous to the constitutively active Ras-G12V mutation in dMiro's N-terminal and C-terminal GTPase domains cause neomorphic phenotypic effects that are likely unrelated to the normal function of each GTPase domain. Overall, our analysis indicates that dMiro's N-terminal GTPase domain is critically required for viability, mitochondrial size, and the distribution of mitochondria out of the neuronal soma regardless of the employed motor, likely by promoting the transition from a stationary to a motile state.

  4. Miro's N-Terminal GTPase Domain Is Required for Transport of Mitochondria into Axons and Dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Babic, Milos; Russo, Gary J.; Wellington, Andrea J.; Sangston, Ryan M.; Gonzalez, Migdalia

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria are dynamically transported in and out of neuronal processes to maintain neuronal excitability and synaptic function. In higher eukaryotes, the mitochondrial GTPase Miro binds Milton/TRAK adaptor proteins linking microtubule motors to mitochondria. Here we show that Drosophila Miro (dMiro), which has previously been shown to be required for kinesin-driven axonal transport, is also critically required for the dynein-driven distribution of mitochondria into dendrites. In addition, we used the loss-of-function mutations dMiroT25N and dMiroT460N to determine the significance of dMiro's N-terminal and C-terminal GTPase domains, respectively. Expression of dMiroT25N in the absence of endogenous dMiro caused premature lethality and arrested development at a pupal stage. dMiroT25N accumulated mitochondria in the soma of larval motor and sensory neurons, and prevented their kinesin-dependent and dynein-dependent distribution into axons and dendrites, respectively. dMiroT25N mutant mitochondria also were severely fragmented and exhibited reduced kinesin and dynein motility in axons. In contrast, dMiroT460N did not impair viability, mitochondrial size, or the distribution of mitochondria. However, dMiroT460N reduced dynein motility during retrograde mitochondrial transport in axons. Finally, we show that substitutions analogous to the constitutively active Ras-G12V mutation in dMiro's N-terminal and C-terminal GTPase domains cause neomorphic phenotypic effects that are likely unrelated to the normal function of each GTPase domain. Overall, our analysis indicates that dMiro's N-terminal GTPase domain is critically required for viability, mitochondrial size, and the distribution of mitochondria out of the neuronal soma regardless of the employed motor, likely by promoting the transition from a stationary to a motile state. PMID:25855186

  5. Diisopropylfluorophosphate Impairs the Transport of Membrane-Bound Organelles in Rat Cortical Axons

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Jie; Naughton, Sean X.; Wulff, Heike; Singh, Vikrant; Beck, Wayne D.; Magrane, Jordi; Thomas, Bobby; Kaidery, Navneet Ammal; Hernandez, Caterina M.

    2016-01-01

    The extensive use of organophosphates (OPs) is an ongoing environmental health concern due to multiple reports of OP-related neurologic abnormalities. The mechanism of the acute toxicity of OPs has been attributed to inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE), but there is growing evidence that this may not account for all the long-term neurotoxic effects of OPs. In previous experiments (using ex vivo and in vitro model systems) we observed that the insecticide OP chlorpyrifos impaired the movements of vesicles and mitochondria in axons. Here, using a time-lapse imaging technique, we evaluated the OP-nerve agent diisopropylfluorophosphate (DFP) across a wide range of concentrations (subnanomolar to micromolar) for effects on fast axonal transport of membrane-bound organelles (MBOs) that contain the amyloid precursor protein (APP) tagged with the fluorescent marker Dendra2 (APPDendra2). Both 1 and 24 hours of exposure to DFP and a positive control compound, colchicine, resulted in a decrease in the velocity of anterograde and retrograde movements of MBOs and an increase in the number of stationary MBOs. These effects occurred at picomolar (100 pM) to low nanomolar (0.1 nM) concentrations that were not associated with compromised cell viability or cytoskeletal damage. Moreover, the effects of DFP on axonal transport occurred at concentrations that did not inhibit AChE activity, and they were not blocked by cholinergic receptor antagonists. Given the fundamental importance of axonal transport to neuronal function, these observations may explain some of the long-term neurologic deficits that have been observed in humans who have been exposed to OPs. PMID:26718240

  6. Axonal Transport and Neurodegeneration: How Marine Drugs Can Be Used for the Development of Therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    White, Joseph A.; Banerjee, Rupkatha; Gunawardena, Shermali

    2016-01-01

    Unlike virtually any other cells in the human body, neurons are tasked with the unique problem of transporting important factors from sites of synthesis at the cell bodies, across enormous distances, along narrow-caliber projections, to distally located nerve terminals in order to maintain cell viability. As a result, axonal transport is a highly regulated process whereby necessary cargoes of all types are packaged and shipped from one end of the neuron to the other. Interruptions in this finely tuned transport have been linked to many neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s (AD), Huntington’s disease (HD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) suggesting that this pathway is likely perturbed early in disease progression. Therefore, developing therapeutics targeted at modifying transport defects could potentially avert disease progression. In this review, we examine a variety of potential compounds identified from marine aquatic species that affect the axonal transport pathway. These compounds have been shown to function in microtubule (MT) assembly and maintenance, motor protein control, and in the regulation of protein degradation pathways, such as the autophagy-lysosome processes, which are defective in many degenerative diseases. Therefore, marine compounds have great potential in developing effective treatment strategies aimed at early defects which, over time, will restore transport and prevent cell death. PMID:27213408

  7. Pressure-induced optic nerve axonal transport interruption in cat eyes.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Bade, B

    1981-12-01

    After intravitreal injection of tritiated leucine, optic nerve axonal transport was studied in 30 cat eyes by tissue radioautography. Twenty-five experimental eyes were examined after four hours of acute pressure elevation with perfusion pressures maintained at 20 to 70 mm Hg. In five control specimens, intraocular pressures were maintained at 10 mm Hg for the four-hour interval. The extent of leucine accumulation, as seen by radioautographs, was inversely proportional to the perfusion pressure. Accumulation was limited to the region fo the lamina cribrosa. The anatomic distribution and pressure response of this transport interruption were similar to those seen in primate eyes studied under similar conditions.

  8. Reversible disruption of dynactin 1-mediated retrograde axonal transport in polyglutamine-induced motor neuron degeneration.

    PubMed

    Katsuno, Masahisa; Adachi, Hiroaki; Minamiyama, Makoto; Waza, Masahiro; Tokui, Keisuke; Banno, Haruhiko; Suzuki, Keisuke; Onoda, Yu; Tanaka, Fumiaki; Doyu, Manabu; Sobue, Gen

    2006-11-22

    Spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA) is a hereditary neurodegenerative disease caused by an expansion of a trinucleotide CAG repeat encoding the polyglutamine tract in the androgen receptor (AR) gene. To elucidate the pathogenesis of polyglutamine-mediated motor neuron dysfunction, we investigated histopathological and biological alterations in a transgenic mouse model of SBMA carrying human pathogenic AR. In affected mice, neurofilaments and synaptophysin accumulated at the distal motor axon. A similar intramuscular accumulation of neurofilament was detected in the skeletal muscle of SBMA patients. Fluoro-gold labeling and sciatic nerve ligation demonstrated an impaired retrograde axonal transport in the transgenic mice. The mRNA level of dynactin 1, an axon motor for retrograde transport, was significantly reduced in the SBMA mice resulting from pathogenic AR-induced transcriptional dysregulation. These pathological events were observed before the onset of neurological symptoms, but were reversed by castration, which prevents nuclear accumulation of pathogenic AR. Overexpression of dynactin 1 mitigated neuronal toxicity of the pathogenic AR in a cell culture model of SBMA. These observations indicate that polyglutamine-dependent transcriptional dysregulation of dynactin 1 plays a crucial role in the reversible neuronal dysfunction in the early stage of SBMA.

  9. Botulinum Neurotoxins A and E Undergo Retrograde Axonal Transport in Primary Motor Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Manich, Maria; Bercsenyi, Kinga; Menendez, Guillermo; Rossetto, Ornella; Caleo, Matteo; Schiavo, Giampietro

    2012-01-01

    The striking differences between the clinical symptoms of tetanus and botulism have been ascribed to the different fate of the parental neurotoxins once internalised in motor neurons. Tetanus toxin (TeNT) is known to undergo transcytosis into inhibitory interneurons and block the release of inhibitory neurotransmitters in the spinal cord, causing a spastic paralysis. In contrast, botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) block acetylcholine release at the neuromuscular junction, therefore inducing a flaccid paralysis. Whilst overt experimental evidence supports the sorting of TeNT to the axonal retrograde transport pathway, recent findings challenge the established view that BoNT trafficking is restricted to the neuromuscular junction by highlighting central effects caused by these neurotoxins. These results suggest a more complex scenario whereby BoNTs also engage long-range trafficking mechanisms. However, the intracellular pathways underlying this process remain unclear. We sought to fill this gap by using primary motor neurons either in mass culture or differentiated in microfluidic devices to directly monitor the endocytosis and axonal transport of full length BoNT/A and BoNT/E and their recombinant binding fragments. We show that BoNT/A and BoNT/E are internalised by spinal cord motor neurons and undergo fast axonal retrograde transport. BoNT/A and BoNT/E are internalised in non-acidic axonal carriers that partially overlap with those containing TeNT, following a process that is largely independent of stimulated synaptic vesicle endo-exocytosis. Following intramuscular injection in vivo, BoNT/A and TeNT displayed central effects with a similar time course. Central actions paralleled the peripheral spastic paralysis for TeNT, but lagged behind the onset of flaccid paralysis for BoNT/A. These results suggest that the fast axonal retrograde transport compartment is composed of multifunctional trafficking organelles orchestrating the simultaneous transfer of diverse cargoes

  10. In vivo neuronal synthesis and axonal transport of Kunitz protease inhibitor (KPI)-containing forms of the amyloid precursor protein.

    PubMed

    Moya, K L; Confaloni, A M; Allinquant, B

    1994-11-01

    We have shown previously that the amyloid precursor protein (APP) is synthesized in retinal ganglion cells and is rapidly transported down the axons, and that different molecular weight forms of the precursor have different developmental time courses. Some APP isoforms contain a Kunitz protease inhibitor (KPI) domain, and APP that lacks the KPI domain is considered the predominant isoform in neurons. We now show that, among the various rapidly transported APPs, a 140-kDa isoform contains the KPI domain. This APP isoform is highly expressed in rapidly growing retinal axons, and it is also prominent in adult axon endings. This 140-kDa KPI-containing APP is highly sulfated compared with other axonally transported isoforms. These results show that APP with the KPI domain is a prominent isoform synthesized in neurons in vivo, and they suggest that the regulation of protease activity may be an important factor during the establishment of neuronal connections.

  11. The pseudorabies virus protein, pUL56, enhances virus dissemination and virulence but is dispensable for axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Daniel, Gina R.; Sollars, Patricia J.; Pickard, Gary E.; Smith, Gregory A.

    2015-01-01

    Neurotropic herpesviruses exit the peripheral nervous system and return to exposed body surfaces following reactivation from latency. The pUS9 protein is a critical viral effector of the anterograde axonal transport that underlies this process. We recently reported that while pUS9 increases the frequency of sorting of newly assembled pseudorabies virus particles to axons from the neural soma during egress, subsequent axonal transport of individual virus particles occurs with wild-type kinetics in the absence of the protein. Here, we examine the role of a related pseudorabies virus protein, pUL56, during neuronal infection. The findings indicate that pUL56 is a virulence factor that supports virus dissemination in vivo, yet along with pUS9, is dispensable for axonal transport. PMID:26655235

  12. A PIK3C3–Ankyrin-B–Dynactin pathway promotes axonal growth and multiorganelle transport

    PubMed Central

    Lorenzo, Damaris Nadia; Badea, Alexandra; Davis, Jonathan; Hostettler, Janell; He, Jiang; Zhong, Guisheng; Zhuang, Xiaowei

    2014-01-01

    Axon growth requires long-range transport of organelles, but how these cargoes recruit their motors and how their traffic is regulated are not fully resolved. In this paper, we identify a new pathway based on the class III PI3-kinase (PIK3C3), ankyrin-B (AnkB), and dynactin, which promotes fast axonal transport of synaptic vesicles, mitochondria, endosomes, and lysosomes. We show that dynactin associates with cargo through AnkB interactions with both the dynactin subunit p62 and phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PtdIns(3)P) lipids generated by PIK3C3. AnkB knockout resulted in shortened axon tracts and marked reduction in membrane association of dynactin and dynein, whereas it did not affect the organization of spectrin–actin axonal rings imaged by 3D-STORM. Loss of AnkB or of its linkages to either p62 or PtdIns(3)P or loss of PIK3C3 all impaired organelle transport and particularly retrograde transport in hippocampal neurons. Our results establish new functional relationships between PIK3C3, dynactin, and AnkB that together promote axonal transport of organelles and are required for normal axon length. PMID:25533844

  13. Excitotoxic oligodendrocyte death and axonal damage induced by glutamate transporter inhibition.

    PubMed

    Domercq, María; Etxebarria, Estibaliz; Pérez-Samartín, Alberto; Matute, Carlos

    2005-10-01

    Glutamate uptake is crucial to terminate glutamate signaling and to prevent excitotoxicity. The present study describes the expression of functional glutamate transporters GLAST and GLT-1 in oligodendrocytes by means of electrophysiology, uptake assays, and immunocytochemistry. Inhibition of glutamate uptake, both in oligodendrocyte cultures and in isolated optic nerves, increases glutamate levels and causes oligodendrocyte excitotoxicity, which is prevented by alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA) and kainate receptor antagonists. Furthermore, glutamate transporter inhibitors or antisense oligonucleotides applied onto the optic nerve in vivo lead to oligodendroglial loss, massive demyelination, and severe axonal damage. Overall, these results demonstrate that the integrity of oligodendrocytes and white matter depends on proper glutamate transporter function. Deregulated transporter activity may contribute to acute and chronic white matter damage.

  14. Soluble N-terminal fragment of mutant Huntingtin protein impairs mitochondrial axonal transport in cultured hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Tian, Jun; Yan, Ya-Ping; Zhou, Rui; Lou, Hui-Fang; Rong, Ye; Zhang, Bao-Rong

    2014-02-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant, progressive, neurodegenerative disorder caused by an unstable expansion of CAG repeats (>35 repeats) within exon 1 of the interesting transcript 15 (IT15) gene. This gene encodes a protein called Huntingtin (Htt), and mutation of the gene results in a polyglutamine (polyQ) near the N-terminus of Htt. The N-terminal fragments of mutant Htt (mHtt), which tend to aggregate, are sufficient to cause HD. Whether these aggregates are causal or protective for HD remains hotly debated. Dysfunctional mitochondrial axonal transport is associated with HD. It remains unknown whether the soluble or aggregated form of mHtt is the primary cause of the impaired mitochondrial axonal transport in HD pathology. Here, we investigated the impact of soluble and aggregated N-terminal fragments of mHtt on mitochondrial axonal transport in cultured hippocampal neurons. We found that the N-terminal fragment of mHtt formed aggregates in almost half of the transfected neurons. Overexpression of the N-terminal fragment of mHtt decreased the velocity of mitochondrial axonal transport and mitochondrial mobility in neurons regardless of whether aggregates were formed. However, the impairment of mitochondrial axonal transport in neurons expressing the soluble and aggregated N-terminal fragments of mHtt did not differ. Our findings indicate that both the soluble and aggregated N-terminal fragments of mHtt impair mitochondrial axonal transport in cultured hippocampal neurons. We predict that dysfunction of mitochondrial axonal transport is an early-stage event in the progression of HD, even before mHtt aggregates are formed.

  15. NAP (davunetide) modifies disease progression in a mouse model of severe neurodegeneration: protection against impairments in axonal transport.

    PubMed

    Jouroukhin, Yan; Ostritsky, Regina; Assaf, Yaniv; Pelled, Galit; Giladi, Eliezer; Gozes, Illana

    2013-08-01

    NAP (davunetide) is a novel neuroprotective compound with mechanism of action that appears to involve microtubule (MT) stabilization and repair. To evaluate, for the first time, the impact of NAP on axonal transport in vivo and to translate it to neuroprotection in a severe neurodegeneration, the SOD1-G93A mouse model for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was used. Manganese-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), estimating axonal transport rates, revealed a significant reduction of the anterograde axonal transport in the ALS mice compared to healthy control mice. Acute NAP treatment normalized axonal transport rates in these ALS mice. Tau hyperphosphorylation, associated with MT dysfunction and defective axonal transport, was discovered in the brains of the ALS mice and was significantly reduced by chronic NAP treatment. Furthermore, in healthy wild type (WT) mice, NAP reversed axonal transport disruption by colchicine, suggesting drug-dependent protection against axonal transport impairment through stabilization of the neuronal MT network. Histochemical analysis showed that chronic NAP treatment significantly protected spinal cord motor neurons against ALS-like pathology. Sequential MRI measurements, correlating brain structure with ALS disease progression, revealed a significant damage to the ventral tegmental area (VTA), indicative of impairments to the dopaminergic pathways relative to healthy controls. Chronic daily NAP treatment of the SOD1-G93A mice, initiated close to disease onset, delayed degeneration of the trigeminal, facial and hypoglossal motor nuclei as was significantly apparent at days 90-100 and further protected the VTA throughout life. Importantly, protection of the VTA was significantly correlated with longevity and overall, NAP treatment significantly prolonged life span in the ALS mice.

  16. Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIbeta isoform is expressed in motor neurons during axon outgrowth and is part of slow axonal transport.

    PubMed

    Lund, Linda M; McQuarrie, Irvine G

    2002-03-15

    Previously, we identified calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIbeta (CaMKIIbeta) mRNA in spinal motor neurons with 372 bp inserted in what corresponds to the "association" domain of the protein. This was interesting because known additions and deletions to CaMKIIbeta mRNA are usually less than 100 bp in size and found in the "variable" region. Changes in the association domain of CaMKIIbeta could influence substrate specificity, activity or intracellular targeting. We show that three variations of this insert are found in CNS neurons or sciatic motor neurons of Sprague-Dawley rats. We used PCR and nucleic acid sequencing to identify inserts of 114, 243, or 372 bases. We also show that addition of the 372 bases is associated with outgrowth of the axon (the standard CaMKIIbeta downregulates when axon outgrowth occurs). Radiolabeling, immunoblots, and 2D PAGE identified this larger CaMKIIbeta as part of the group of soluble proteins moving at the slowest rate of axonal transport (SCa) in sciatic motor neurons (similar1 mm/day). This group is composed mainly of structural proteins (e.g., tubulin) used to assemble the cytoskeleton of regrowing axons.

  17. Selective retrograde transsynaptic transfer of a protein, tetanus toxin, subsequent to its retrograde axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Schwab, ME; Suda, K; Thoenen, H

    1979-01-01

    The fate of tetanus toxin (mol wt 150,000) subsequent to its retrograde axonal transport in peripheral sympathetic neurons of the rat was studied by both electron microscope autoradiography and cytochemistry using toxin-horseradish peroxidase (HRP) coupling products, and compared to that of nerve growth factor (NGF), cholera toxin, and the lectins wheat germ agglutinin (WGA), phytohaemagglutinin (PHA), and ricin. All these macromolecules are taken up by adrenergic nerve terminals and transported retrogradely in a selective, highly efficient manner. This selective uptake and transport is a consequence of the binding of these macromolecules to specific receptive sites on the nerve terminal membrane. All these ligands are transported in the axons within smooth vesicles, cisternae, and tubules. In the cell bodies these membrane compartments fuse and most of the transported macromolecules are finally incorporated into lysosomes. The cell nuclei, the parallel golgi cisternae, and the extracellular space always remain unlabeled. In case the tetanus toxin, however, a substantial fraction of the labeled material appears in presynaptic cholinergic nerve terminals which innervate the labeled ganglion cells. In these terminals tetanus toxin-HRP is localized in 500-1,000 A diam vesicles. In contrast, such a retrograde transsynaptic transfer is not at all or only very rarely detectable after retrograde transport of cholera toxin, NGF, WGA, PHA, or ricin. An atoxic fragment of the tetanus toxin, which contains the ganglioside-binding site, behaves like intact toxin. With all these macromolecules, the extracellular space and the glial cells in the ganglion remain unlabeled. We conclude that the selectivity of this transsynaptic transfer of tetanus toxin is due to a selective release of the toxin from the postsynaptic dendrites. This release is immediately followed by an uptake into the presynaptic terminals. PMID:92475

  18. Rapidly transported organelles containing membrane and cytoskeletal components: their relation to axonal growth

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    We have examined the movements, composition, and cellular origin of phase-dense varicosities in cultures of chick sympathetic and sensory neurons. These organelles are variable in diameter (typically between 0.2 and 2 microns) and undergo saltatory movements both towards and away from the neuronal cell body. Their mean velocities vary inversely with the size of the organelle and are greater in the retrograde than the anterograde direction. Organelles stain with the lipophilic dye 1, 1'-dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethyl-indocarbocyanine and with antibodies to cytoskeletal components. In cultures double-stained with antibodies to alpha-tubulin and 70-kD neurofilament protein (NF-L), approximately 40% of the organelles stain for tubulin, 30% stain for NF- L, 10% stain for both tubulin and NF-L, and 40% show no staining with either antibody. The association of cytoskeletal proteins with the organelles shows that these proteins are able to move by a form of rapid axonal transport. Under most culture conditions the predominant direction of movement is towards the cell body, suggesting that the organelles are produced at or near the growth cone. Retrograde movements continue in culture medium lacking protein or high molecular mass components and increase under conditions in which the advance of the growth cone is arrested. There is a fourfold increase in the number of organelles moving retrogradely in neurites that encounter a substratum-associated barrier to elongation; retrograde movements increase similarly in cultures exposed to cytochalasin at levels known to block growth cone advance. No previously described organelle shows behavior coordinated with axonal growth in this way. We propose that the organelles contain membrane and cytoskeletal components that have been delivered to the growth cone, by slow or fast anterograde transport, in excess of the amounts required to synthesize more axon. In view of their rapid mobility and variable contents, we suggest that they

  19. Transfer of axonally transported phospholipids into myelin isolated from the rabbit optic pathway

    SciTech Connect

    Alberghina, M.; Viola, M.; Giuffrida, A.M.

    1982-02-01

    The contribution of the axonal transport to the biosynthesis of myelin phospholipids was investigated in the rabbit optic pathway. A double labeling technique was used. The same animals were injected with one isotope intravitreally and the other intraventricularly. This procedure allows double labeling of the optic nerves, optic tracts, lateral geniculate bodies (LGB), and superior colliculus (SC). The precursors simultaneously injected were: (1-/sup 14/C)palmitate (15 microCi intravitreally in both eyes or 50 microCi intraventricularly) and (2-/sup 3/H)glycerol (50 microCi intravitreally in both eyes of 100 microCi intraventricularly). Twenty four hours and 10 days after the injections, myelin was purified from pooled optic nerves and optic tracts as well as from pooled LGBs or SCs. The phospholipids were extracted and then separated by thin-layer chromatography; the specific radioactivity of the various classes of phospholipids was determined. Using both administration routes of C- or /sup 3/H-precursors, the distribution of label and specific radioactivity of myelin phospholipids in the retina and in all other optic structures were very similar. Phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidylserine + phosphoinositol were preferentially labeled with both precursors. These results suggest that, in the rabbit optic pathway the phospholipids synthesized in the retinal ganglion cells and transported along the axons, could undergo transaxonal transfer into myelin.

  20. Localization of axonally transported 125I-wheat germ agglutinin beneath the plasma membrane of chick retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    1983-01-01

    The distribution of 125I-wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) transported by axons of chick retinal ganglion cells to layer d of the optic tectum was studied by electron microscopic autoradiography. We found that 52% of the radioactivity was located in axons and axon terminals in the contralateral optic tectum 22 h after intravitreal injection of affinity-purified 125I-WGA. Axons comprised 43% of the volume of layer d. Dendrites, glial cells, and neuron cell bodies contained 20%, 17%, and 3% of the label, whereas these structures comprised 24%, 21%, and 2% of the tissue volume, respectively. We also measured the distances between the autoradiographic silver grains and the plasma membranes of these profiles, and compared observed distributions of grains to theoretical distributions computed for band-shaped sources at various distances from the plasma membranes. This analysis revealed that the radioactive source within axons was distributed in a band of cytoplasm extending in from the plasma membrane a distance of 63 nm. Because WGA is known to bind to specific membrane glycoconjugates, we infer that at least some glycoconjugates may be concentrated within an annular region of cytoplasm just beneath the axonal plasma membrane after axoplasmic transport from the neuron cell body. PMID:6187749

  1. Ndel1-derived peptides modulate bidirectional transport of injected beads in the squid giant axon

    PubMed Central

    Segal, Michal; Soifer, Ilya; Petzold, Heike; Howard, Jonathon; Elbaum, Michael; Reiner, Orly

    2012-01-01

    Summary Bidirectional transport is a key issue in cellular biology. It requires coordination between microtubule-associated molecular motors that work in opposing directions. The major retrograde and anterograde motors involved in bidirectional transport are cytoplasmic dynein and conventional kinesin, respectively. It is clear that failures in molecular motor activity bear severe consequences, especially in the nervous system. Neuronal migration may be impaired during brain development, and impaired molecular motor activity in the adult is one of the hallmarks of neurodegenerative diseases leading to neuronal cell death. The mechanisms that regulate or coordinate kinesin and dynein activity to generate bidirectional transport of the same cargo are of utmost importance. We examined how Ndel1, a cytoplasmic dynein binding protein, may regulate non-vesicular bidirectional transport. Soluble Ndel1 protein, Ndel1-derived peptides or control proteins were mixed with fluorescent beads, injected into the squid giant axon, and the bead movements were recorded using time-lapse microscopy. Automated tracking allowed for extraction and unbiased analysis of a large data set. Beads moved in both directions with a clear bias to the anterograde direction. Velocities were distributed over a broad range and were typically slower than those associated with fast vesicle transport. Ironically, the main effect of Ndel1 and its derived peptides was an enhancement of anterograde motion. We propose that they may function primarily by inhibition of dynein-dependent resistance, which suggests that both dynein and kinesin motors may remain engaged with microtubules during bidirectional transport. PMID:23213412

  2. Quantitative measurements and modeling of cargo-motor interactions during fast transport in the living axon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seamster, Pamela E.; Loewenberg, Michael; Pascal, Jennifer; Chauviere, Arnaud; Gonzales, Aaron; Cristini, Vittorio; Bearer, Elaine L.

    2012-10-01

    The kinesins have long been known to drive microtubule-based transport of sub-cellular components, yet the mechanisms of their attachment to cargo remain a mystery. Several different cargo-receptors have been proposed based on their in vitro binding affinities to kinesin-1. Only two of these—phosphatidyl inositol, a negatively charged lipid, and the carboxyl terminus of the amyloid precursor protein (APP-C), a trans-membrane protein—have been reported to mediate motility in living systems. A major question is how these many different cargo, receptors and motors interact to produce the complex choreography of vesicular transport within living cells. Here we describe an experimental assay that identifies cargo-motor receptors by their ability to recruit active motors and drive transport of exogenous cargo towards the synapse in living axons. Cargo is engineered by derivatizing the surface of polystyrene fluorescent nanospheres (100 nm diameter) with charged residues or with synthetic peptides derived from candidate motor receptor proteins, all designed to display a terminal COOH group. After injection into the squid giant axon, particle movements are imaged by laser-scanning confocal time-lapse microscopy. In this report we compare the motility of negatively charged beads with APP-C beads in the presence of glycine-conjugated non-motile beads using new strategies to measure bead movements. The ensuing quantitative analysis of time-lapse digital sequences reveals detailed information about bead movements: instantaneous and maximum velocities, run lengths, pause frequencies and pause durations. These measurements provide parameters for a mathematical model that predicts the spatiotemporal evolution of distribution of the two different types of bead cargo in the axon. The results reveal that negatively charged beads differ from APP-C beads in velocity and dispersion, and predict that at long time points APP-C will achieve greater progress towards the presynaptic

  3. Microtubule-stabilizing peptides and small molecules protecting axonal transport and brain function: focus on davunetide (NAP).

    PubMed

    Magen, Iddo; Gozes, Illana

    2013-12-01

    This review focuses on the therapeutic effects and mechanisms of action of NAP (davunetide), an eight amino acid snippet derived from activity-dependent neuroprotective protein (ADNP) which was discovered in our laboratory. We have recently described the effects of NAP in neurodegenerative disorders, and we now review the beneficial effects of NAP and other microtubule-stabilizing agents on impairments in axonal transport. Experiments in animal models of microtubule-deficiency including tauopathy (spanning from drosophila to mammals) showed protection of axonal transport by microtubule-stabilizers and NAP, which was coupled to motor and cognitive protection. Clinical trials with NAP (davunetide) are reviewed paving the path to future developments.

  4. The kinesin-associated protein UNC-76 is required for axonal transport in the Drosophila nervous system.

    PubMed

    Gindhart, Joseph G; Chen, Jinyun; Faulkner, Melissa; Gandhi, Rita; Doerner, Karl; Wisniewski, Tiffany; Nandlestadt, Aline

    2003-08-01

    Kinesin-I is essential for the transport of membrane-bound organelles in neural and nonneural cells. However, the means by which kinesin interacts with its intracellular cargoes, and the means by which kinesin-cargo interactions are regulated in response to cellular transport requirements are not fully understood. The C terminus of the Drosophila kinesin heavy chain (KHC) was used in a two-hybrid screen of a Drosophila cDNA library to identify proteins that bind specifically to the kinesin tail domain. UNC-76 is an evolutionarily conserved cytosolic protein that binds to the tail domain of KHC in two-hybrid and copurification assays, indicating that kinesin and UNC-76 form a stable complex in vivo. Loss of Drosophila Unc-76 function results in locomotion and axonal transport defects reminiscent of the phenotypes observed in kinesin mutants, suggesting that UNC-76 is required for kinesin-dependent axonal transport. Unc-76 exhibits dosage-sensitive genetic relationships with Khc and Kinesin light chain mutations, further supporting the hypothesis that UNC-76 and kinesin-I work in a common transport pathway. Given the interaction of FEZ1, the mammalian homolog of UNC-76, with protein kinase Czeta, and the role of FEZ1 in axon outgrowth, we propose that UNC-76 helps integrate kinesin activity in response to transport requirements in axons.

  5. Huntingtin differentially regulates the axonal transport of a sub-set of Rab-containing vesicles in vivo

    PubMed Central

    White, Joseph A.; Anderson, Eric; Zimmerman, Katherine; Zheng, Kan Hong; Rouhani, Roza; Gunawardena, Shermali

    2015-01-01

    Loss of huntingtin (HTT), the Huntington's disease (HD) protein, was previously shown to cause axonal transport defects. Within axons, HTT can associate with kinesin-1 and dynein motors either directly or via accessory proteins for bi-directional movement. However, the composition of the vesicle-motor complex that contains HTT during axonal transport is unknown. Here we analyze the in vivo movement of 16 Rab GTPases within Drosophila larval axons and show that HTT differentially influences the movement of a particular sub-set of these Rab-containing vesicles. While reduction of HTT perturbed the bi-directional motility of Rab3 and Rab19-containing vesicles, only the retrograde motility of Rab7-containing vesicles was disrupted with reduction of HTT. Interestingly, reduction of HTT stimulated the anterograde motility of Rab2-containing vesicles. Simultaneous dual-view imaging revealed that HTT and Rab2, 7 or 19 move together during axonal transport. Collectively, our findings indicate that HTT likely influences the motility of different Rab-containing vesicles and Rab-mediated functions. These findings have important implications for our understanding of the complex role HTT plays within neurons normally, which when disrupted may lead to neuronal death and disease. PMID:26450517

  6. Soluble Conformers of Aβ and Tau Alter Selective Proteins Governing Axonal Transport

    PubMed Central

    Sherman, Mathew A.; LaCroix, Michael; Amar, Fatou; Larson, Megan E.; Forster, Colleen; Aguzzi, Adriano; Bennett, David A.; Ramsden, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Despite the demonstration that amyloid-β (Aβ) can trigger increased tau phosphorylation and neurofibrillary tangle (NFT) formation in vivo, the molecular link associating Aβ and tau pathologies remains ill defined. Here, we observed that exposure of cultured primary neurons to Aβ trimers isolated from brain tissue of subjects with Alzheimer's disease led to a specific conformational change of tau detected by the antibody Alz50. A similar association was supported by postmortem human brain analyses. To study the role of Aβ trimers in vivo, we created a novel bigenic Tg-Aβ+Tau mouse line by crossing Tg2576 (Tg-Aβ) and rTg4510 (Tg-Tau) mice. Before neurodegeneration and amyloidosis, apparent Aβ trimers were increased by ∼2-fold in 3-month-old Tg-Aβ and Tg-Aβ+Tau mice compared with younger mice, whereas soluble monomeric Aβ levels were unchanged. Under these conditions, the expression of soluble Alz50-tau conformers rose by ∼2.2-fold in the forebrains of Tg-Aβ+Tau mice compared with nontransgenic littermates. In parallel, APP accumulated intracellularly, suggestive of a putative dysfunction of anterograde axonal transport. We found that the protein abundance of the kinesin-1 light chain (KLC1) was reduced selectively in vivo and in vitro when soluble Aβ trimers/Alz50-tau were present. Importantly, the reduction in KLC1 was prevented by the intraneuronal delivery of Alz50 antibodies. Collectively, our findings reveal that specific soluble conformers of Aβ and tau cooperatively disrupt axonal transport independently from plaques and tangles. Finally, these results suggest that not all endogenous Aβ oligomers trigger the same deleterious changes and that the role of each assembly should be considered separately. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The mechanistic link between amyloid-β (Aβ) and tau, the two major proteins composing the neuropathological lesions detected in brain tissue of Alzheimer's disease subjects, remains unclear. Here, we report that the

  7. Failure of unilateral carotid artery ligation to affect pressure-induced interruption of rapid axonal transport in primate optic nerves.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Schwartz, E L; Anderson, D R

    1980-02-01

    Previous experiments showed that optic nerve axonal transport can be blocked at the level of the lamina cribrosa by elevated intraocular pressure. In an effort to discover if this blockage might be secondary to pressure-induced ischemia, we studied the effect of unilateral common carotid artery ligation upont the pressure-induced interruption of axonal transport. In 13 owl monkeys (Aotus trivirgatus), the right common carotid artery was ligated within the anterior cervical triangle. Three days later, ophtalmodynomometry was performed on all experimental eyes. In nine of the 13 animals, this estimate of ophthalmic artery pressure was 10 to 20 mm Hg less in the right compared to the left eye. Optic nerve axonal transport was studied in right and left eyes during 5 hours of increased intraocular pressure (ocular pressure 35 mm Hg less than mean femoral artery blood pressure). No significant difference in the extent to which the transport mechanisms were interrupted could be demonstrated when comparing right and left eyes of the experimental animals. These observations fail to support a vascular mechanism for this pressure-induced interruption of axonal transport.

  8. Morphological evidence for a transport of ribosomes from Schwann cells to regenerating axons.

    PubMed

    Court, Felipe A; Midha, Rajiv; Cisterna, Bruno A; Grochmal, Joey; Shakhbazau, Antos; Hendriks, William T; Van Minnen, Jan

    2011-10-01

    Recently, we showed that Schwann cells transfer ribosomes to injured axons. Here, we demonstrate that Schwann cells transfer ribosomes to regenerating axons in vivo. For this, we used lentiviral vector-mediated expression of ribosomal protein L4 and eGFP to label ribosomes in Schwann cells. Two approaches were followed. First, we transduced Schwann cells in vivo in the distal trunk of the sciatic nerve after a nerve crush. Seven days after the crush, 12% of regenerating axons contained fluorescent ribosomes. Second, we transduced Schwann cells in vitro that were subsequently injected into an acellular nerve graft that was inserted into the sciatic nerve. Fluorescent ribosomes were detected in regenerating axons up to 8 weeks after graft insertion. Together, these data indicate that regenerating axons receive ribosomes from Schwann cells and, furthermore, that Schwann cells may support local axonal protein synthesis by transferring protein synthetic machinery and mRNAs to these axons.

  9. Pressure-induced fast axonal transport abnormalities and the anatomy at the lamina cribrosa in primate eyes.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L

    1983-03-01

    In ten owl monkey eyes (Aotus trivirgatus) the location of pressure-induced (perfusion pressure 35 mmHg) axonal transport abnormalities was determined by the examination of serial step cross-section tissue radio autographs from the optic nerve head. The degree of the local transport interruption did not correlate with the fiber bundle cross-section area, the shape of the laminar pores or the density of the inter-bundle septa in that region.

  10. Modeling Huntington disease in Drosophila: Insights into axonal transport defects and modifiers of toxicity.

    PubMed

    Krench, Megan; Littleton, J Troy

    2013-01-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an inherited neurodegenerative disorder caused by a polyglutamine (polyQ) expansion in the huntingtin (Htt) gene. Despite years of research, there is no treatment that extends life for patients with the disorder. Similarly, little is known about which cellular pathways that are altered by pathogenic Huntingtin (Htt) protein expression are correlated with neuronal loss. As part of a longstanding effort to gain insights into HD pathology, we have been studying the protein in the context of the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster. We generated transgenic HD models in Drosophila by engineering flies that carry a 12-exon fragment of the human Htt gene with or without the toxic trinucleotide repeat expansion. We also created variants with a monomeric red fluorescent protein (mRFP) tag fused to Htt that allows in vivo imaging of Htt protein localization and aggregation. While wild-type Htt remains diffuse throughout the cytoplasm of cells, pathogenic Htt forms insoluble aggregates that accumulate in neuronal soma and axons. Aggregates can physically block transport of numerous organelles along the axon. We have also observed that aggregates are formed quickly, within just a few hours of mutant Htt expression. To explore mechanisms of neurodegeneration in our HD model, we performed in vivo and in vitro screens to search for modifiers of viability and pathogenic Htt aggregation. Our results identified several novel candidates for HD therapeutics that can now be tested in mammalian models of HD. Furthermore, these experiments have highlighted the complex relationship between aggregates and toxicity that exists in HD.

  11. Deficits in axonal transport in hippocampal-based circuitry and the visual pathway in APP knock-out animals witnessed by manganese enhanced MRI.

    PubMed

    Gallagher, Joseph J; Zhang, Xiaowei; Ziomek, Gregory J; Jacobs, Russell E; Bearer, Elaine L

    2012-04-15

    Mounting evidence implicates axonal transport defects, typified by the presence of axonal varicosities with aberrant accumulations of cargo, as an early event in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis. Work identifying amyloid precursor protein (APP) as a vesicular motor receptor for anterograde axonal transport further implicates axonal transport in AD. Manganese-enhanced MRI (MEMRI) detects axonal transport dynamics in preclinical studies. Here we pursue an understanding of the role of APP in axonal transport in the central nervous system by applying MEMRI to hippocampal circuitry and to the visual pathway in living mice homozygous for either wild type or a deletion in the APP gene (n=12 for each genotype). Following intra-ocular or stereotaxic hippocampal injection, we performed time-lapse MRI to detect Mn(2+) transport. Three dimensional whole brain datasets were compared on a voxel-wise basis using within-group pair-wise analysis. Quantification of transport to structures connected to injection sites via axonal fiber tracts was also performed. Histology confirmed consistent placement of hippocampal injections and no observable difference in glial-response to the injections. APP-/- mice had significantly reduced transport from the hippocampus to the septal nuclei and amygdala after 7h and reduced transport to the contralateral hippocampus after 25 h; axonal transport deficits in the APP-/- animals were also identified in the visual pathway. These data support a system-wide role for APP in axonal transport within the central nervous system and demonstrate the power of MEMRI for assessing neuronal circuitry involved in memory and learning.

  12. Sensory neuropathy in progressive motor neuronopathy (pmn) mice is associated with defects in microtubule polymerization and axonal transport.

    PubMed

    Schäfer, Michael K; Bellouze, Sarah; Jacquier, Arnaud; Schaller, Sébastien; Richard, Laurence; Mathis, Stéphane; Vallat, Jean-Michel; Haase, Georg

    2016-08-04

    Motor neuron diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are now recognized as multi-system disorders also involving various non-motor neuronal cell types. The precise extent and mechanistic basis of non-motor neuron damage in human ALS and ALS animal models remain however unclear. To address this, we here studied progressive motor neuronopathy (pmn) mice carrying a missense loss-of-function mutation in tubulin binding cofactor E (TBCE). These mice manifest a particularly aggressive form of motor axon dying back and display a microtubule loss, similar to that induced by human ALS-linked TUBA4A mutations. Using whole nerve confocal imaging of pmn × thy1.2-YFP16 fluorescent reporter mice and electron microscopy, we demonstrate axonal discontinuities, bead-like spheroids and ovoids in pmn suralis nerves indicating prominent sensory neuropathy. The axonal alterations qualitatively resemble those in phrenic motor nerves but do not culminate in the loss of myelinated fibers. We further show that the pmn mutation decreases the level of TBCE, impedes microtubule polymerization in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons and causes progressive loss of microtubules in large and small caliber suralis axons. Live imaging of axonal transport using GFP-tagged tetanus toxin C-fragment (GFP-TTC) demonstrates defects in microtubule-based transport in pmn DRG neurons, providing a potential explanation for the axonal alterations in sensory nerves. This study unravels sensory neuropathy as a pathological feature of mouse pmn, and discusses the potential contribution of cytoskeletal defects to sensory neuropathy in human motor neuron disease.

  13. Disruption of Axonal Transport Perturbs Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP) - Signaling and Contributes to Synaptic Abnormalities in Two Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Min Jung; Hansen, Timothy J.; Mickiewicz, Monique; Kaczynski, Tadeusz J.; Fye, Samantha; Gunawardena, Shermali

    2014-01-01

    Formation of new synapses or maintenance of existing synapses requires the delivery of synaptic components from the soma to the nerve termini via axonal transport. One pathway that is important in synapse formation, maintenance and function of the Drosophila neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-signaling pathway. Here we show that perturbations in axonal transport directly disrupt BMP signaling, as measured by its downstream signal, phospho Mad (p-Mad). We found that components of the BMP pathway genetically interact with both kinesin-1 and dynein motor proteins. Thick vein (TKV) vesicle motility was also perturbed by reductions in kinesin-1 or dynein motors. Interestingly, dynein mutations severely disrupted p-Mad signaling while kinesin-1 mutants showed a mild reduction in p-Mad signal intensity. Similar to mutants in components of the BMP pathway, both kinesin-1 and dynein motor protein mutants also showed synaptic morphological defects. Strikingly TKV motility and p-Mad signaling were disrupted in larvae expressing two human disease proteins; expansions of glutamine repeats (polyQ77) and human amyloid precursor protein (APP) with a familial Alzheimer's disease (AD) mutation (APPswe). Consistent with axonal transport defects, larvae expressing these disease proteins showed accumulations of synaptic proteins along axons and synaptic abnormalities. Taken together our results suggest that similar to the NGF-TrkA signaling endosome, a BMP signaling endosome that directly interacts with molecular motors likely exist. Thus problems in axonal transport occurs early, perturbs BMP signaling, and likely contributes to the synaptic abnormalities observed in these two diseases. PMID:25127478

  14. Increased slow transport in axons of regenerating newt limbs after a nerve conditioning lesion made prior to amputation

    SciTech Connect

    Maier, C.E.

    1989-01-01

    The first part of this study shows that axonal density is constant in the limb stump of the next proximal to the area of traumatic nerve degeneration caused by limb amputation. The results of the second part of this work reveal that a nerve conditioning lesion made two weeks prior to amputation is associated with accelerated limb regeneration and that this accelerated limb regeneration is accompanied by an earlier arrival of axons. This is the first demonstration of naturally occurring limb regeneration being enhanced. In this study SCb cytoskeletal proteins were identified and measured using SDS-PAGE and liquid scintillation counting. Proteins were measured at 7, 14, 21, and 28 days after {sup 35}S-methionine injection and the normal rate of SCb transport determined to be 0.19 mm/day. A single axotomy does not enhance the rate of SCb transport but does increase the amount of labeled SCb proteins that are transported. When a conditioning lesion is employed prior to limb amputation and SCb proteins are measured at 7, 14, and 21 days after injection, there is a twofold acceleration in the rate of SCb transport and an increase in the amount of SCb proteins transported in conditioned axons.

  15. Axonal transport studied in a single vertebrate neuron: the giant electromotor neuron of the electric catfish, Malapterurus electricus.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, H; Tashiro, T; Komiya, Y; Kurokawa, M

    1989-02-01

    Axonal transport was studied using a single vertebrate neuron, the giant electromotor neuron of the electric catfish, Malapterurus electricus. The electric organs of this strongly electric fish are innervated by two neurons whose axons form one electric nerve each. After injection of [35S]methionine into the spinal cord at the level of the two perikarya radioactively labelled material is exported by fast flow as a small wave with a velocity of 5.8 mm/h and a somal release time of 91 min (29 degrees C). Slow flow investigated between 15 and 39 days had a velocity of 1.36 mm/d at 29 degrees C. Analysis of radiolabelled proteins by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis revealed different patterns of labelling between slow and fast flow. The relative molecular mass of the two major proteins labelled on slow flow correspond to actin and tubulin. Labelled proteins of higher relative molecular mass may correspond to neurofilament proteins. Our results suggest that this vertebrate single-neuron and single-axon system can be used successfully for axonal transport studies.

  16. [32P]orthophosphate and [35S]methionine label separate pools of neurofilaments with markedly different axonal transport kinetics in mouse retinal ganglion cells in vivo.

    PubMed

    Nixon, R A; Lewis, S E; Mercken, M; Sihag, R K

    1994-11-01

    Newly synthesized neurofilament proteins become highly phosphorylated within axons. Within 2 days after intravitreously injecting normal adult mice with [32P]orthophosphate, we observed that neurofilaments along the entire length of optic axons were radiolabeled by a soluble 32P-carrier that was axonally transported faster than neurofilaments. 32P-incorporation into neurofilament proteins synthesized at the time of injection was comparatively low and minimally influenced the labeling pattern along axons. 32P-incorporation into axonal neurofilaments was considerably higher in the middle region of the optic axons. This characteristic non-uniform distribution of radiolabel remained nearly unchanged for at least 22 days. During this interval, less than 10% of the total 32P-labeled neurofilaments redistributed from the optic nerve to the optic tract. By contrast, newly synthesized neurofilaments were selectively pulse-labeled in ganglion cell bodies by intravitreous injection of [35S]methionine and about 60% of this pool translocated by slow axoplasmic transport to the optic tract during the same time interval. These findings indicate that the steady-state or resident pool of neurofilaments in axons is not identical to the newly synthesized neurofilament pool, the major portion of which moves at the slowest rate of axoplasmic transport. Taken together with earlier studies, these results support the idea that, depending in part on their phosphorylation state, transported neurofilaments can interact for short or very long periods with a stationary but dynamic neurofilament lattice in axons.

  17. Limited trafficking of a neurotropic virus through inefficient retrograde axonal transport and the type I interferon response.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, Karen Z; Pfeiffer, Julie K

    2010-03-05

    Poliovirus is an enteric virus that rarely invades the human central nervous system (CNS). To identify barriers limiting poliovirus spread from the periphery to CNS, we monitored trafficking of 10 marked viruses. After oral inoculation of susceptible mice, poliovirus was present in peripheral neurons, including vagus and sciatic nerves. To model viral trafficking in peripheral neurons, we intramuscularly injected mice with poliovirus, which follows a muscle-sciatic nerve-spinal cord-brain route. Only 20% of the poliovirus population successfully moved from muscle to brain, and three barriers limiting viral trafficking were identified. First, using light-sensitive viruses, we found limited viral replication in peripheral neurons. Second, retrograde axonal transport of poliovirus in peripheral neurons was inefficient; however, the efficiency was increased upon muscle damage, which also increased the transport efficiency of a non-viral neural tracer, wheat germ agglutinin. Third, using susceptible interferon (IFN) alpha/beta receptor knockout mice, we demonstrated that the IFN response limited viral movement from the periphery to the brain. Surprisingly, the retrograde axonal transport barrier was equivalent in strength to the IFN barrier. Illustrating the importance of barriers created by the IFN response and inefficient axonal transport, IFN alpha/beta receptor knockout mice with muscle damage permitted 80% of the viral population to access the brain, and succumbed to disease three times faster than mice with intact barriers. These results suggest that multiple separate barriers limit poliovirus trafficking from peripheral neurons to the CNS, possibly explaining the rare incidence of paralytic poliomyelitis. This study identifies inefficient axonal transport as a substantial barrier to poliovirus trafficking in peripheral neurons, which may limit CNS access for other viruses.

  18. Release of kinesin from vesicles by hsc70 and regulation of fast axonal transport

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsai, M. Y.; Morfini, G.; Szebenyi, G.; Brady, S. T.

    2000-01-01

    The nature of kinesin interactions with membrane-bound organelles and mechanisms for regulation of kinesin-based motility have both been surprisingly difficult to define. Most kinesin is recovered in supernatants with standard protocols for purification of motor proteins, but kinesin recovered on membrane-bound organelles is tightly bound. Partitioning of kinesin between vesicle and cytosolic fractions is highly sensitive to buffer composition. Addition of either N-ethylmaleimide or EDTA to homogenization buffers significantly increased the fraction of kinesin bound to organelles. Given that an antibody against kinesin light chain tandem repeats also releases kinesin from vesicles, these observations indicated that specific cytoplasmic factors may regulate kinesin release from membranes. Kinesin light tandem repeats contain DnaJ-like motifs, so the effects of hsp70 chaperones were evaluated. Hsc70 released kinesin from vesicles in an MgATP-dependent and N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive manner. Recombinant kinesin light chains inhibited kinesin release by hsc70 and stimulated the hsc70 ATPase. Hsc70 actions may provide a mechanism to regulate kinesin function by releasing kinesin from cargo in specific subcellular domains, thereby effecting delivery of axonally transported materials.

  19. Mutant huntingtin, abnormal mitochondrial dynamics, defective axonal transport of mitochondria, and selective synaptic degeneration in Huntington's disease.

    PubMed

    Reddy, P Hemachandra; Shirendeb, Ulziibat P

    2012-02-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive, fatal neurodegenerative disease caused by expanded polyglutamine repeats in the HD gene. HD is characterized by chorea, seizures, involuntary movements, dystonia, cognitive decline, intellectual impairment and emotional disturbances. Research into mutant huntingtin (Htt) and mitochondria has found that mutant Htt interacts with the mitochondrial protein dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1), enhances GTPase Drp1 enzymatic activity, and causes excessive mitochondrial fragmentation and abnormal distribution, leading to defective axonal transport of mitochondria and selective synaptic degeneration. This article summarizes latest developments in HD research and focuses on the role of abnormal mitochondrial dynamics and defective axonal transport in HD neurons. This article also discusses the therapeutic strategies that decrease mitochondrial fragmentation and neuronal damage in HD.

  20. Amyloid-β oligomers induce tau-independent disruption of BDNF axonal transport via calcineurin activation in cultured hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ramser, Elisa M.; Gan, Kathlyn J.; Decker, Helena; Fan, Emily Y.; Suzuki, Matthew M.; Ferreira, Sergio T.; Silverman, Michael A.

    2013-01-01

    Disruption of fast axonal transport (FAT) is an early pathological event in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Soluble amyloid-β oligomers (AβOs), increasingly recognized as proximal neurotoxins in AD, impair organelle transport in cultured neurons and transgenic mouse models. AβOs also stimulate hyperphosphorylation of the axonal microtubule-associated protein, tau. However, the role of tau in FAT disruption is controversial. Here we show that AβOs reduce vesicular transport of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in hippocampal neurons from both wild-type and tau-knockout mice, indicating that tau is not required for transport disruption. FAT inhibition is not accompanied by microtubule destabilization or neuronal death. Significantly, inhibition of calcineurin (CaN), a calcium-dependent phosphatase implicated in AD pathogenesis, rescues BDNF transport. Moreover, inhibition of protein phosphatase 1 and glycogen synthase kinase 3β, downstream targets of CaN, prevents BDNF transport defects induced by AβOs. We further show that AβOs induce CaN activation through nonexcitotoxic calcium signaling. Results implicate CaN in FAT regulation and demonstrate that tau is not required for AβO-induced BDNF transport disruption. PMID:23783030

  1. Myelin injury induces axonal transport impairment but not AD-like pathology in the hippocampus of cuprizone-fed mice

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Junjun; Zhou, Hong; Bai, Feng; Ren, Qingguo; Zhang, Zhijun

    2016-01-01

    Both multiple sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) are progressive neurological disorders with myelin injury and memory impairment. However, whether myelin impairment could cause AD-like neurological pathology remains unclear. To explore neurological pathology following myelin injury, we assessed cognitive function, the expression of myelin proteins, axonal transport-associated proteins, axonal structural proteins, synapse-associated proteins, tau and beta amyloid and the status of neurons, using the cuprizone mouse model of demyelination. We found the mild impairment of learning ability in cuprizone-fed mice and the decreased expression of myelin basic protein (MBP) in the hippocampus. And anti-LINGO-1 improved learning ability and partly restored MBP level. Furthermore, we also found kinesin light chain (KLC), neurofilament light chain (NFL) and neurofilament heavy chain (NF200) were declined in demyelinated hippocampus, which could be partly improved by treatment with anti-LINGO-1. However, we did not observe the increased expression of beta amyloid, hyperphosphorylation of tau and loss of neurons in demyelinated hippocampus. Our results suggest that demyelination might lead to the impairment of neuronal transport, but not cause increased level of hyperphosphorylated tau and beta amyloid. Our research demonstrates remyelination might be an effective pathway to recover the function of neuronal axons and cognition in MS. PMID:27129150

  2. A role for cyclin-dependent kinase(s) in the modulation of fast anterograde axonal transport: effects defined by olomoucine and the APC tumor suppressor protein

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ratner, N.; Bloom, G. S.; Brady, S. T.

    1998-01-01

    Proteins that interact with both cytoskeletal and membrane components are candidates to modulate membrane trafficking. The tumor suppressor proteins neurofibromin (NF1) and adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) both bind to microtubules and interact with membrane-associated proteins. The effects of recombinant NF1 and APC fragments on vesicle motility were evaluated by measuring fast axonal transport along microtubules in axoplasm from squid giant axons. APC4 (amino acids 1034-2844) reduced only anterograde movements, whereas APC2 (aa 1034-2130) or APC3 (aa 2130-2844) reduced both anterograde and retrograde transport. NF1 had no effect on organelle movement in either direction. Because APC contains multiple cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) consensus phosphorylation motifs, the kinase inhibitor olomoucine was examined. At concentrations in which olomoucine is specific for cyclin-dependent kinases (5 microM), it reduced only anterograde transport, whereas anterograde and retrograde movement were both affected at concentrations at which other kinases are inhibited as well (50 microM). Both anterograde and retrograde transport also were inhibited by histone H1 and KSPXK peptides, substrates for proline-directed kinases, including CDKs. Our data suggest that CDK-like axonal kinases modulate fast anterograde transport and that other axonal kinases may be involved in modulating retrograde transport. The specific effect of APC4 on anterograde transport suggests a model in which the binding of APC to microtubules may limit the activity of axonal CDK kinase or kinases in restricted domains, thereby affecting organelle transport.

  3. Studies on Axonal Transport in an Animal Model for Gulf War Syndrome

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-07-01

    during development (Fink and Rainier , 2004). One possibility is that longer axons are more at risk than shorter axons, but this does not explain why...Suppl 1]:S106 –S110. Fink JK (2006) Hereditary spastic paraplegia. Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep 6:65–76. Fink JK, Rainier S (2004) Hereditary spastic...Biomed 1:1–7. Zhao X, Alvarado D, Rainier S, Lemons R, Hedera P, Weber CH, Tukel T, Apak M, Heiman-Patterson T, Ming L, Bui M, Fink JK (2001) Muta

  4. Waves of actin and microtubule polymerization drive microtubule-based transport and neurite growth before single axon formation

    PubMed Central

    Winans, Amy M; Collins, Sean R; Meyer, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Many developing neurons transition through a multi-polar state with many competing neurites before assuming a unipolar state with one axon and multiple dendrites. Hallmarks of the multi-polar state are large fluctuations in microtubule-based transport into and outgrowth of different neurites, although what drives these fluctuations remains elusive. We show that actin waves, which stochastically migrate from the cell body towards neurite tips, direct microtubule-based transport during the multi-polar state. Our data argue for a mechanical control system whereby actin waves transiently widen the neurite shaft to allow increased microtubule polymerization to direct Kinesin-based transport and create bursts of neurite extension. Actin waves also require microtubule polymerization, arguing that positive feedback links these two components. We propose that actin waves create large stochastic fluctuations in microtubule-based transport and neurite outgrowth, promoting competition between neurites as they explore the environment until sufficient external cues can direct one to become the axon. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12387.001 PMID:26836307

  5. Epitope-tagged dopamine transporter knock-in mice reveal rapid endocytic trafficking and filopodia targeting of the transporter in dopaminergic axons

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Anjali; Richards, Toni L.; Simmons, Diana; Zahniser, Nancy R.; Sorkin, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    The plasma membrane dopamine (DA) transporter (DAT) is essential for reuptake of extracellular DA. DAT function in heterologous cells is regulated by subcellular targeting, endocytosis, and intracellular trafficking, but the mechanisms regulating neuronal DAT remain poorly understood. Hence, we generated a knock-in mouse expressing a hemagglutinin (HA)-epitope-tagged DAT to study endogenous transporter trafficking. Introduction of the HA tag into the second extracellular loop of mouse DAT did not perturb its expression level, distribution pattern, or substrate uptake kinetics. Live-cell fluorescence microscopy imaging using fluorescently labeled HA-specific antibody and a quantitative HA-antibody endocytosis assay demonstrated that in axons HA-DAT was primarily located in the plasma membrane and internalized mostly in growth cones and varicosities, where synaptic vesicle markers were also concentrated. Formation of varicosities was frequently preceded or accompanied by highly dynamic filopodia-like membrane protrusions. Remarkably, HA-DAT often concentrated at the tips of these filopodia. This pool of HA-DATs exhibited low lateral membrane mobility. Thus, DAT-containing filopodia may be involved in synaptogenesis in developing DA neurons. Treatment of neurons with amphetamine increased mobility of filopodial HA-DAT and accelerated HA-DAT endocytosis in axons, suggesting that chronic amphetamine may interfere with DA synapse development. Interestingly, phorbol esters did not accelerate endocytosis of axonal DAT.—Rao, A., Richards, T. L., Simmons, D., Zahniser, N. R., Sorkin, A. Epitope-tagged dopamine transporter knock-in mice reveal rapid endocytic trafficking and filopodia targeting of the transporter in dopaminergic axons. PMID:22267337

  6. Mapping the connectivity of serotonin transporter immunoreactive axons to excitatory and inhibitory neurochemical synapses in the mouse limbic brain.

    PubMed

    Belmer, Arnauld; Klenowski, Paul M; Patkar, Omkar L; Bartlett, Selena E

    2017-04-01

    Serotonin neurons arise from the brainstem raphe nuclei and send their projections throughout the brain to release 5-HT which acts as a modulator of several neuronal populations. Previous electron microscopy studies in rats have morphologically determined the distribution of 5-HT release sites (boutons) in certain brain regions and have shown that 5-HT containing boutons form synaptic contacts that are either symmetric or asymmetric. In addition, 5-HT boutons can form synaptic triads with the pre- and postsynaptic specializations of either symmetrical or asymmetrical synapses. However, due to the labor intensive processing of serial sections required by electron microscopy, little is known about the neurochemical properties or the quantitative distribution of 5-HT triads within whole brain or discrete subregions. Therefore, we used a semi-automated approach that combines immunohistochemistry and high-resolution confocal microscopy to label serotonin transporter (SERT) immunoreactive axons and reconstruct in 3D their distribution within limbic brain regions. We also used antibodies against key pre- (synaptophysin) and postsynaptic components of excitatory (PSD95) or inhibitory (gephyrin) synapses to (1) identify putative 5-HTergic boutons within SERT immunoreactive axons and, (2) quantify their close apposition to neurochemical excitatory or inhibitory synapses. We provide a 5-HTergic axon density map and have determined the ratio of synaptic triads consisting of a 5-HT bouton in close proximity to either neurochemical excitatory or inhibitory synapses within different limbic brain areas. The ability to model and map changes in 5-HTergic axonal density and the formation of triadic connectivity within whole brain regions using this rapid and quantitative approach offers new possibilities for studying neuroplastic changes in the 5-HTergic pathway.

  7. Effects of eribulin, vincristine, paclitaxel and ixabepilone on fast axonal transport and kinesin-1 driven microtubule gliding: Implications for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    LaPointe, Nichole E.; Morfini, Gerardo; Brady, Scott T.; Feinstein, Stuart C.; Wilson, Leslie; Jordan, Mary Ann

    2014-01-01

    Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is a serious, painful and dose-limiting side effect of cancer drugs that target microtubules. The mechanisms underlying the neuronal damage are unknown, but may include disruption of fast axonal transport, an essential microtubule-based process that moves cellular components over long distances between neuronal cell bodies and nerve terminals. This idea is supported by the “dying back” pattern of degeneration observed in CIPN, and by the selective vulnerability of sensory neurons bearing the longest axonal projections. In this study, we test the hypothesis that microtubule-targeting drugs disrupt fast axonal transport using vesicle motility assays in isolated squid axoplasm and a cell-free microtubule gliding assay with defined components. We compare four clinically-used drugs, eribulin, vincristine, paclitaxel and ixabepilone. Of these, eribulin is associated with a relatively low incidence of severe neuropathy, while vincristine has a relatively high incidence. In vesicle motility assays, we found that all four drugs inhibited anterograde (conventional kinesin-dependent) fast axonal transport, with the potency being vincristine = ixabepilone > paclitaxel = eribulin. Interestingly, eribulin and paclitaxel did not inhibit retrograde (cytoplasmic dynein-dependent) fast axonal transport, in contrast to vincristine and ixabepilone. Similarly, vincristine and ixabepilone both exerted significant inhibitory effects in an in vitro microtubule gliding assay consisting of recombinant kinesin (kinesin-1) and microtubules composed of purified bovine brain tubulin, whereas paclitaxel and eribulin had negligible effects. Our results suggest that (i) inhibition of microtubule-based fast axonal transport may be a significant contributor to neurotoxicity induced by microtubule-targeting drugs, and (ii) that individual microtubule-targeting drugs affect fast axonal transport through different mechanisms. PMID:23711742

  8. Axonal transport of class II and III beta-tubulin: evidence that the slow component wave represents the movement of only a small fraction of the tubulin in mature motor axons

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    Pulse-labeling studies demonstrate that tubulin synthesized in the neuron cell body (soma) moves somatofugally within the axon (at a rate of several millimeters per day) as a well-defined wave corresponding to the slow component of axonal transport. A major goal of the present study was to determine what proportion of the tubulin in mature motor axons is transported in this wave. Lumbar motor neurons in 9-wk-old rats were labeled by injecting [35S]methionine into the spinal cord 2 wk after motor axons were injured (axotomized) by crushing the sciatic nerve. Immunoprecipitation with mAbs which recognize either class II or III beta-tubulin were used to analyze the distributions of radioactivity in these isotypes in intact and axotomized motor fibers 5 d after labeling. We found that both isotypes were associated with the slow component wave, and that the leading edge of this wave was enriched in the class III isotype. Axotomy resulted in significant increases in the labeling and transport rates of both isotypes. Immunohistochemical examination of peripheral nerve fibers demonstrated that nearly all of the class II and III beta-tubulin in nerve fibers is located within axons. Although the amounts of radioactivity per millimeter of nerve in class II and III beta-tubulin were significantly greater in axotomized than in control nerves (with increases of +160% and +58%, respectively), immunoassay revealed no differences in the amounts of these isotypes in axotomized and control motor fibers. We consider several explanations for this paradox; these include the possibility that the total tubulin content is relatively insensitive to changes in the amount of tubulin transported in the slow component wave because this wave represents the movement of only a small fraction of the tubulin in these motor fibers. PMID:1383234

  9. Dual-specificity phosphatase 26 (DUSP26) stimulates Aβ42 generation by promoting amyloid precursor protein axonal transport during hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Jung, Sunmin; Nah, Jihoon; Han, Jonghee; Choi, Seon-Guk; Kim, Hyunjoo; Park, Jaesang; Pyo, Ha-Kyung; Jung, Yong-Keun

    2016-06-01

    Amyloid beta peptide (Aβ) is a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and is generated through the sequential cleavage of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by β- and γ-secretases. Hypoxia is a known risk factor for AD and stimulates Aβ generation by γ-secretase; however, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. In this study, we showed that dual-specificity phosphatase 26 (DUSP26) regulates Aβ generation through changes in subcellular localization of the γ-secretase complex and its substrate C99 under hypoxic conditions. DUSP26 was identified as a novel γ-secretase regulator from a genome-wide functional screen using a cDNA expression library. The phosphatase activity of DUSP26 was required for the increase in Aβ42 generation through γ-secretase, but this regulation did not affect the amount of the γ-secretase complex. Interestingly, DUSP26 induced the accumulation of C99 in the axons by stimulating anterograde transport of C99-positive vesicles. Additionally, DUSP26 induced c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation for APP processing and axonal transport of C99. Under hypoxic conditions, DUSP26 expression levels were elevated together with JNK activation, and treatment with JNK inhibitor SP600125, or the DUSP26 inhibitor NSC-87877, reduced hypoxia-induced Aβ generation by diminishing vesicle trafficking of C99 to the axons. Finally, we observed enhanced DUSP26 expression and JNK activation in the hippocampus of AD patients. Our results suggest that DUSP26 mediates hypoxia-induced Aβ generation through JNK activation, revealing a new regulator of γ-secretase-mediated APP processing under hypoxic conditions. We propose the role of phosphatase dual-specificity phosphatase 26 (DUSP26) in the selective regulation of Aβ42 production in neuronal cells under hypoxic stress. Induction of DUSP26 causes JNK-dependent shift in the subcellular localization of γ-secretase and C99 from the cell body to axons for Aβ42 generation. These findings provide a

  10. TRiC subunits enhance BDNF axonal transport and rescue striatal atrophy in Huntington’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Xiaobei; Chen, Xu-Qiao; Han, Eugene; Hu, Yue; Paik, Paul; Ding, Zhiyong; Overman, Julia; Lau, Alice L.; Shahmoradian, Sarah H.; Chiu, Wah; Thompson, Leslie M.; Wu, Chengbiao; Mobley, William C.

    2016-01-01

    Corticostriatal atrophy is a cardinal manifestation of Huntington’s disease (HD). However, the mechanism(s) by which mutant huntingtin (mHTT) protein contributes to the degeneration of the corticostriatal circuit is not well understood. We recreated the corticostriatal circuit in microfluidic chambers, pairing cortical and striatal neurons from the BACHD model of HD and its WT control. There were reduced synaptic connectivity and atrophy of striatal neurons in cultures in which BACHD cortical and striatal neurons were paired. However, these changes were prevented if WT cortical neurons were paired with BACHD striatal neurons; synthesis and release of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) from WT cortical axons were responsible. Consistent with these findings, there was a marked reduction in anterograde transport of BDNF in BACHD cortical neurons. Subunits of the cytosolic chaperonin T-complex 1 (TCP-1) ring complex (TRiC or CCT for chaperonin containing TCP-1) have been shown to reduce mHTT levels. Both CCT3 and the apical domain of CCT1 (ApiCCT1) decreased the level of mHTT in BACHD cortical neurons. In cortical axons, they normalized anterograde BDNF transport, restored retrograde BDNF transport, and normalized lysosomal transport. Importantly, treating BACHD cortical neurons with ApiCCT1 prevented BACHD striatal neuronal atrophy by enhancing release of BDNF that subsequently acts through tyrosine receptor kinase B (TrkB) receptor on striatal neurons. Our findings are evidence that TRiC reagent-mediated reductions in mHTT enhanced BDNF delivery to restore the trophic status of BACHD striatal neurons. PMID:27601642

  11. Distal retinal ganglion cell axon transport loss and activation of p38 MAPK stress pathway following VEGF-A antagonism

    PubMed Central

    Foxton, R; Osborne, A; Martin, K R; Ng, Y-S; Shima, D T

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that VEGF-A antagonists may be detrimental to neuronal health following ocular administration. Here we investigated firstly the effects of VEGF-A neutralization on retinal neuronal survival in the Ins2Akita diabetic and JR5558 spontaneous choroidal neovascularization (CNV) mice, and then looked at potential mechanisms contributing to cell death. We detected elevated apoptosis in the ganglion cell layer in both these models following VEGF-A antagonism, indicating that even when vascular pathologies respond to treatment, neurons are still vulnerable to reduced VEGF-A levels. We observed that retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) seemed to be the cells most susceptible to VEGF-A antagonism, so we looked at anterograde transport in these cells, due to their long axons requiring optimal protein and organelle trafficking. Using cholera toxin B-subunit tracer studies, we found a distal reduction in transport in the superior colliculus following VEGF-A neutralization, which occurred prior to net RGC loss. This phenomenon of distal transport loss has been described as a feature of early pathological changes in glaucoma, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease models. Furthermore, we observed increased phosphorylation of p38 MAPK and downstream Hsp27 stress pathway signaling in the retinas from these experiments, potentially providing a mechanistic explanation for our findings. These experiments further highlight the possible risks of using VEGF-A antagonists to treat ocular neovascular disease, and suggest that VEGF-A may contribute to the maintenance and function of axonal transport in neurons of the retina. PMID:27148685

  12. Increased expression of reticulon 3 in neurons leads to reduced axonal transport of β site amyloid precursor protein-cleaving enzyme 1.

    PubMed

    Deng, Minzi; He, Wanxia; Tan, Ya; Han, Hailong; Hu, Xiangyou; Xia, Kun; Zhang, Zhuohua; Yan, Riqiang

    2013-10-18

    BACE1 is the sole enzyme responsible for cleaving amyloid precursor protein at the β-secretase site, and this cleavage initiates the generation of β-amyloid peptide (Aβ). Because amyloid precursor protein is predominantly expressed by neurons and deposition of Aβ aggregates in the human brain is highly correlated with the Aβ released at axonal terminals, we focused our investigation of BACE1 localization on the neuritic region. We show that BACE1 was not only enriched in the late Golgi, trans-Golgi network, and early endosomes but also in both axons and dendrites. BACE1 was colocalized with the presynaptic vesicle marker synaptophysin, indicating the presence of BACE1 in synapses. Because the excessive release of Aβ from synapses is attributable to an increase in amyloid deposition, we further explored whether the presence of BACE1 in synapses was regulated by reticulon 3 (RTN3), a protein identified previously as a negative regulator of BACE1. We found that RTN3 is not only localized in the endoplasmic reticulum but also in neuritic regions where no endoplasmic reticulum-shaping proteins are detected, implicating additional functions of RTN3 in neurons. Coexpression of RTN3 with BACE1 in cultured neurons was sufficient to reduce colocalization of BACE1 with synaptophysin. This reduction correlated with decreased anterograde transport of BACE1 in axons in response to overexpressed RTN3. Our results in this study suggest that altered RTN3 levels can impact the axonal transport of BACE1 and demonstrate that reducing axonal transport of BACE1 in axons is a viable strategy for decreasing BACE1 in axonal terminals and, perhaps, reducing amyloid deposition.

  13. Restoring axonal localization and transport of transmembrane receptors to promote repair within the injured CNS: a critical step in CNS regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Forbes, Lindsey H.; Andrews, Melissa R.

    2017-01-01

    Each neuronal subtype is distinct in how it develops, responds to environmental cues, and whether it is capable of mounting a regenerative response following injury. Although the adult central nervous system (CNS) does not regenerate, several experimental interventions have been trialled with successful albeit limited instances of axonal repair. We highlight here some of these approaches including extracellular matrix (ECM) modification, cellular grafting, gene therapy-induced replacement of proteins, as well as application of biomaterials. We also review the recent report demonstrating the failure of axonal localization and transport of growth-promoting receptors within certain classes of mature neurons. More specifically, we discuss an inability of integrin receptors to localize within the axonal compartment of mature motor neurons such as in the corticospinal and rubrospinal tracts, whereas in immature neurons of those pathways and in mature sensory tracts such as in the optic nerve and dorsal column pathways these receptors readily localize within axons. Furthermore we assert that this failure of axonal localization contributes to the intrinsic inability of axonal regeneration. We conclude by highlighting the necessity for both combined therapies as well as a targeted approach specific to both age and neuronal subtype will be required to induce substantial CNS repair. PMID:28250734

  14. Distribution of pressure-induced fast axonal transport abnormalities in primate optic nerve. An autoradiographic study.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L

    1981-07-01

    The distribution of transport abnormalities in primate optic nerve from eyes subjected to five hours of pressure elevation (perfusion pressure of 35 mm Hg) was studied. Tissue autoradiography and electron microscopy were used to localize regions of the lamina cribrosa with increased transport interruption. A preferential involvement by this transport abnormality involved the superior, temporal, and inferior portions, to the exclusion of the nasal portion, of the optic nerve head. This observation supports the hypothesis that transport interruption seen in this model may be pertinent to the study of clinical glaucomatous neuropathy.

  15. Nebula/DSCR1 upregulation delays neurodegeneration and protects against APP-induced axonal transport defects by restoring calcineurin and GSK-3β signaling.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Jillian L; Chang, Karen T

    2013-01-01

    Post-mortem brains from Down syndrome (DS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients show an upregulation of the Down syndrome critical region 1 protein (DSCR1), but its contribution to AD is not known. To gain insights into the role of DSCR1 in AD, we explored the functional interaction between DSCR1 and the amyloid precursor protein (APP), which is known to cause AD when duplicated or upregulated in DS. We find that the Drosophila homolog of DSCR1, Nebula, delays neurodegeneration and ameliorates axonal transport defects caused by APP overexpression. Live-imaging reveals that Nebula facilitates the transport of synaptic proteins and mitochondria affected by APP upregulation. Furthermore, we show that Nebula upregulation protects against axonal transport defects by restoring calcineurin and GSK-3β signaling altered by APP overexpression, thereby preserving cargo-motor interactions. As impaired transport of essential organelles caused by APP perturbation is thought to be an underlying cause of synaptic failure and neurodegeneration in AD, our findings imply that correcting calcineurin and GSK-3β signaling can prevent APP-induced pathologies. Our data further suggest that upregulation of Nebula/DSCR1 is neuroprotective in the presence of APP upregulation and provides evidence for calcineurin inhibition as a novel target for therapeutic intervention in preventing axonal transport impairments associated with AD.

  16. Synthesis, axonal transport, and turnover of the high molecular weight microtubule-associated protein MAP 1A in mouse retinal ganglion cells: tubulin and MAP 1A display distinct transport kinetics.

    PubMed

    Nixon, R A; Fischer, I; Lewis, S E

    1990-02-01

    Microtubule-associated proteins (MAPs) in neurons establish functional associations with microtubules, sometimes at considerable distances from their site of synthesis. In this study we identified MAP 1A in mouse retinal ganglion cells and characterized for the first time its in vivo dynamics in relation to axonally transported tubulin. A soluble 340-kD polypeptide was strongly radiolabeled in ganglion cells after intravitreal injection of [35S]methionine or [3H]proline. This polypeptide was identified as MAP 1A on the basis of its co-migration on SDS gels with MAP 1A from brain microtubules; its co-assembly with microtubules in the presence of taxol or during cycles of assembly-disassembly; and its cross-reaction with well-characterized antibodies against MAP 1A in immunoblotting and immunoprecipitation assays. Glial cells of the optic nerve synthesized considerably less MAP 1A than neurons. The axoplasmic transport of MAP 1A differed from that of tubulin. Using two separate methods, we observed that MAP 1A advanced along optic axons at a rate of 1.0-1.2 mm/d, a rate typical of the Group IV (SCb) phase of transport, while tubulin moved 0.1-0.2 mm/d, a group V (SCa) transport rate. At least 13% of the newly synthesized MAP 1A entering optic axons was incorporated uniformly along axons into stationary axonal structures. The half-residence time of stationary MAP 1A in axons (55-60 d) was 4.6 times longer than that of MAP 1A moving in Group IV, indicating that at least 44% of the total MAP 1A in axons is stationary. These results demonstrate that cytoskeletal proteins that become functionally associated with each other in axons may be delivered to these sites at different transport rates. Stable associations between axonal constituents moving at different velocities could develop when these elements leave the transport vector and incorporate into the stationary cytoskeleton.

  17. The production of denervation-like changes in rat muscle by colchicine, without interference with axonal transport or muscle activity.

    PubMed Central

    Cangiano, A; Fried, J A

    1977-01-01

    1. Rat extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles were examined after colchicine treatment of the sciatic nerve. Colchicine was applied in one of two ways: (i) a single sub-epineural injection; (ii) a chronically implanted silicone cuff. 2. After the sub-epineural injection, the entire membrane of muscle fibres became sensitive to iontophoretically applied acetylcholine and the muscle action potentials became resistant to tetrodotoxin. However, the majority of these fibres were found to be normally innervated. 3. These effects were not restricted to the EDL muscle of the colchicine injected side but were also found in the EDL muscle of the contralateral side, indicating that the action of colchicine was systemic. 4. In the treated sciatic nerve there was a partial block of axonal transport of 3H-labelled proteins, which correlated with a partial paralysis of the ipsilateral leg. However, axoplasmic transport was found to be normal in the contralateral sciatic nerve and the contralateral limb was not paralysed despite the supersensitivity of the investigated muscle on that side. 5. When colchicine was applied with a silicone cuff, denervation-like changes were confined to the ipsilateral EDL muscle. However, impulse conduction block at the level of the cuff was usually observed. 6. It is concluded that (i) colchicine can produce denervation-like changes in normally active muscle without blocking axoplasmic transport, through an action probably exerted directly on the muscle membrane, and (ii) that colchicine-cuff experiments failed to provide unambiguous evidence in support of the existence of neurotrophic influences on the muscle membrane. PMID:66309

  18. Lithium reverses behavioral and axonal transport-related changes associated with ANK3 bipolar disorder gene disruption.

    PubMed

    Gottschalk, Michael G; Leussis, Melanie P; Ruland, Tillmann; Gjeluci, Klaudio; Petryshen, Tracey L; Bahn, Sabine

    2017-03-01

    Ankyrin 3 (ANK3) has been implicated as a genetic risk factor for bipolar disorder (BD), however the resulting pathophysiological and treatment implications remain elusive. In a preclinical systems biological approach, we aimed to characterize the behavioral and proteomic effects of Ank3 haploinsufficiency and chronic mood-stabilizer treatment in mice. Psychiatric-related behavior was evaluated with the novelty-suppressed feeding (NSF) paradigm, elevated plus maze (EPM) and a passive avoidance task (PAT). Tandem mass spectrometry (MS(E)) was employed for hippocampal proteome profiling. A functional enrichment approach based on protein-protein interactions (PPIs) was performed to outline which biological processes in the hippocampus were affected by Ank3 haploinsufficiency and lithium treatment. Proteomic abundance changes as detected by MS(E) or highlighted by PPI network modelling were followed up by targeted selected reaction monitoring (SRM). Increased psychiatric-related behavior in Ank3+/- mice was ameliorated by lithium in all assessments (NSF, EPM, PAT). MS(E) followed by modular PPI clustering and functional annotation enrichment pointed towards kinesin-related axonal transport and glutamate signaling as mediators of Ank3+/- pathophysiology and lithium treatment. SRM validated this hypothesis and further confirmed abundance changes of ANK3 interaction partners. We propose that psychiatric-related behavior in Ank3+/- mice is connected to a disturbance of the kinesin cargo system, resulting in a dysfunction of neuronal ion channel and glutamate receptor transport. Lithium reverses this molecular signature, suggesting the promotion of anterograde kinesin transport as part of its mechanism of action in ameliorating Ank3-related psychiatric-related behavior.

  19. Analysis of the apparent biphasic axonal transport kinetics of fucosylated glycoproteins

    SciTech Connect

    Goodrum, J.F.; Morell, P.

    1984-07-01

    Following intraocular injection of (/sup 3/H)fucose, the accumulation of transported radioactivity arriving at the superior colliculus peaks within a few hours and decays with a time course of hours. Then, over a period of several days, radioactivity again accumulates at the superior colliculus and then decays with a half-life of days. Such data have been interpreted as evidence for both a group of rapidly released, rapidly transported glycoproteins (first peak) and a group of slowly released but rapidly transported glycoproteins (second peak). This supposition was investigated by studying in more detail the metabolism of some individual fucosylated proteins in both the retina and superior colliculus. It was noted that much of the radioactivity incorporated in fucosylated glycoproteins at the retina was rapidly metabolized, while the remainder of the fucosylated moieties had a metabolic half-life on the order of days. In other experiments (/sup 35/S)methionine was injected intraocularly, the metabolism in the retina was examined and a study was made of the kinetics of transport to the superior colliculus of the peptide backbone of these same individual proteins. In contrast to the two waves of accumulation of radioactivity from (/sup 3/H)fucose, accumulation of radioactivity of the peptide backbone of the same glycoproteins was monophasic. The author's explanation of these data involves the presence of two types of fucose moieties on the peptides. One group of fucose moieties is labile and is lost from the peptide backbone over a period of hours. Other fucose moieties are approximately as metabolically stable as the peptide backbones to which they are attached. The actual peptide backbones of the glycoproteins are committed to rapid transport over a period of several days.

  20. JIP3 regulates neuronal radial migration by mediating TrkB axonal anterograde transport in the developing cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Ma, Huixian; Yu, Hui; Li, Ting; Zhao, Yan; Hou, Ming; Chen, Zheyu; Wang, Yue; Sun, Tao

    2017-04-15

    Radial migration is essential for the precise lamination and the coordinated function of the cerebral cortex. However, the molecular mechanisms for neuronal radial migration are not clear. Here, we report that c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK)-interacting protein-3 (JIP3) is highly expressed in the brain of embryonic mice and essential for radial migration. Knocking down JIP3 by in utero electroporation specifically perturbs the radial migration of cortical neurons but has no effect on neurogenesis and neuronal differentiation. Furthermore, we illustrate that JIP3 knockdown delays but does not block the migration of cortical neurons by investigating the distribution of neurons with JIP3 knocked down in the embryo and postnatal mouse. Finally, we find that JIP3 regulates cortical neuronal migration by mediating TrkB axonal anterograde transport during brain development. These findings deepen our understanding of the regulation of neuronal development by JIP3 and provide us a novel view on the regulating mechanisms of neuronal radial migration.

  1. Sequence determinants of the Caenhorhabditis elegans dopamine transporter dictating in vivo axonal export and synaptic localization.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Sarah B; Hardaway, J Andrew; Hardie, Shannon L; Wright, Jane; Glynn, Ryan M; Bermingham, Daniel P; Han, Qiao; Sturgeon, Sarah M; Freeman, Phyllis; Blakely, Randy D

    2017-01-01

    The monoamine neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) acts across phylogeny to modulate both simple and complex behaviors. The presynaptic DA transporter (DAT) is a major determinant of DA signaling capacity in ensuring efficient extracellular DA clearance. In humans, DAT is also a major target for prescribed and abused psychostimulants. Multiple structural determinants of DAT function and regulation have been defined, though largely these findings have arisen from heterologous expression or ex vivo cell culture studies. Loss of function mutations in the gene encoding the Caenhorhabditis elegans DAT (dat-1) produces rapid immobility when animals are placed in water, a phenotype termed swimming-induced paralysis (Swip). The ability of a DA neuron-expressed, GFP-tagged DAT-1 fusion protein (GFP::DAT-1) to localize to synapses and rescue Swip in these animals provides a facile approach to define sequences supporting DAT somatic export and function in vivo. In prior studies, we found that truncation of the last 25 amino acids of the DAT-1 C-terminus (Δ25) precludes Swip rescue, supported by a deficit in GFP::DAT-1 synaptic localization. Here, we further defined the elements within Δ25 required for DAT-1 export and function in vivo. We identified two conserved motifs ((584)KW(585) and (591)PYRKR(595)) where mutation results in a failure of GFP::DAT-1 to be efficiently exported to synapses and restore DAT-1 function. The (584)KW(585) motif conforms to a sequence proposed to support SEC24 binding, ER export from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), and surface expression of mammalian DAT proteins, whereas the (591)PYRKR(595) sequence conforms to a 3R motif identified as a SEC24 binding site in vertebrate G-protein coupled receptors. Consistent with a potential role of SEC24 orthologs in DAT-1 export, we demonstrated DA neuron-specific expression of a sec-24.2 transcriptional reporter. Mutations of the orthologous C-terminal sequences in human DAT (hDAT) significantly reduced

  2. Analytical modelling of retrograde transport of nerve growth factors in an axon: a transient problem.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, A V

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this paper was to develop an analytical solution describing retrograde transport of nerve growth factors (NGFs) from a target tissue to the neuron soma. The obtained solution is applied to describe two situations: (1) when all dynein motors are moving at a constant velocity and (2) when the dynein velocity distribution is described by a probability density function. The dynamics of NGF concentrations and fluxes is investigated. It is established that the magnitude of the diffusion flux forms a wave localised in space and propagating towards the neuron soma; the magnitude of this wave decreases as the wave propagates downstream. The dynein-driven flux of NGFs is demonstrated to be the main component in the NGF flux, which is shown to be strongly correlated with the NGF concentration.

  3. A temporal variation in nonneuronal protein synthesis in dorsal root ganglia and nerve and its significance to studies of axonal transport

    SciTech Connect

    Snyder, R.E.; O'Brien, D.W.; Nihei, T.

    1984-03-01

    Protein synthesis and fast axonal transport were studied in vitro using dorsal root ganglia (DRG)-sciatic nerve preparations from the amphibian Xenopus laevis. It was observed that the rate of incorporation of (/sup 3/H)leucine into protein in DRG and isolated segments of nerve began to increase 9 to 11 h after killing the animal, attaining at 13 to 17 h a maximum of 5- to 10-times preincrease (less than 9 h) values. At the same time as an increase in the rate of incorporation began, synthesis commenced in DRG and nerve exposed to cycloheximide (125 micrograms/ml). Whereas cycloheximide reduced fast axonal transport to 1 to 3% of control values in preparations maintained 20 to 24 h in vitro, cycloheximide reduced incorporation in DRG to only 80% of control values. N-terminal labeling studies showed that both the increased incorporation and cycloheximide-insensitive incorporation resulted from protein synthesis. Autoradiographic and incorporation studies indicated that nonneuronal cells situated in the ganglion capsule and perineural sheath of the nerve were responsible for both the increased incorporation and cycloheximide-insensitive synthesis. The findings have implications for the study of axonal transport.

  4. The axonal cytoskeleton: from organization to function

    PubMed Central

    Kevenaar, Josta T.; Hoogenraad, Casper C.

    2015-01-01

    The axon is the single long fiber that extends from the neuron and transmits electrical signals away from the cell body. The neuronal cytoskeleton, composed of microtubules (MTs), actin filaments and neurofilaments, is not only required for axon formation and axonal transport but also provides the structural basis for several specialized axonal structures, such as the axon initial segment (AIS) and presynaptic boutons. Emerging evidence suggest that the unique cytoskeleton organization in the axon is essential for its structure and integrity. In addition, the increasing number of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative diseases linked to defect in actin- and microtubule-dependent processes emphasizes the importance of a properly regulated cytoskeleton for normal axonal functioning. Here, we provide an overview of the current understanding of actin and microtubule organization within the axon and discuss models for the functional role of the cytoskeleton at specialized axonal structures. PMID:26321907

  5. Differential screening of mutated SOD1 transgenic mice reveals early up-regulation of a fast axonal transport component in spinal cord motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Dupuis, L; de Tapia, M; René, F; Lutz-Bucher, B; Gordon, J W; Mercken, L; Pradier, L; Loeffler, J P

    2000-08-01

    In the present study we analyze the molecular mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration in familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS). For this, we used a transgenic mouse model expressing the Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) gene with a Gly(86) to Arg (G86R) mutation equivalent to that found in a subset of human FALS. Using an optimized suppression subtractive hybridization method, a cDNA specifically up-regulated during the asymptomatic phase in the lumbar spinal cord of G86R mice was identified by sequence analysis as the KIF3-associated protein (KAP3), a regulator of fast axonal transport. RT-PCR analysis revealed that KAP3 induction was an early event arising long before axonal degeneration. Immunohistochemical studies further revealed that KAP3 protein predominantly accumulates in large motor neurons of the ventral spinal cord. We further demonstrated that KAP3 up-regulation occurs independent of any change in the other components of the kinesin II complex. However, since the ubiquitous KIF1A motor is up-regulated, our results show an early and complex rearrangement of the fast axonal transport machinery in the course of FALS pathology.

  6. A New Regulatory Mechanism for Kv7.2 Protein During Neuropathy: Enhanced Transport from the Soma to Axonal Terminals of Injured Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Cisneros, Elsa; Roza, Carolina; Jackson, Nieka; López-García, José Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Kv7.2 channel expression has been reported to decrease in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) following the induction of a peripheral neuropathy while other experiments show that Kv7.2 accumulates in peripheral neuromas. The mechanisms underlying these novel expression patterns are poorly understood. Here we use immunofluorescence methods to analyze Kv7.2 protein expression changes in sensory neurons following peripheral axotomy and the potential role of axonal transport. Results indicate that DRG neurons express Kv7.2 in ~16% of neurons and that this number decreases by about 65% after axotomy. Damaged neurons were identified in DRG by application of the tracer Fluoro-ruby at the site of injury during surgery. Reduction of Kv7.2 expression was particularly strong in damaged neurons although some loss was also found in putative uninjured neurons. In parallel to the decrease in the soma of axotomized sensory neurons, Kv7.2 accumulated at neuromatose fiber endings. Blockade of axonal transport with either vinblastine (VLB) or colchicine (COL) abolished Kv7.2 redistribution in neuropathic animals. Channel distribution rearrangements did not occur following induction of inflammation in the hind paw. Behavioral tests indicate that protein rearrangements within sensory afferents are essential to the development of allodynia under neuropathic conditions. These results suggest that axotomy enhances axonal transport in injured sensory neurons, leading to a decrease of somatic expression of Kv7.2 protein and a concomitant accumulation in damaged fiber endings. Localized changes in channel expression patterns under pathological conditions may create novel opportunities for Kv7.2 channel openers to act as analgesics. PMID:26696829

  7. Light and electron microscopic analysis of enkephalin-like immunoreactivity in the basolateral amygdala, including evidence for convergence of enkephalin-containing axon terminals and norepinephrine transporter-containing axon terminals onto common targets

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jingyi; McDonald, Alexander J.

    2016-01-01

    Modulatory interactions of opioids and norepinephrine (NE) in the anterior subdivision of the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala (BLa) are critical for the consolidation of memories of emotionally arousing experiences. Although there have been several studies of the noradrenergic system in the amygdalar basolateral nuclear complex (BLC), little is known about the chemical neuroanatomy of opioid systems in this region. To address this knowledge gap the present study first examined the distribution of met-enkephalin-like immunoreactivity (ENK-ir) in the BLC at the light microscopic level, and then utilized dual-labeling immunocytochemistry combined with electron microscopy to investigate the extent of convergence of NE and ENK terminals onto common structures in the BLa. Antibodies to ENK and the norepinephrine transporter (NET) were used in these studies. Light microscopic examination revealed that a subpopulation of small nonpyramidal neurons expressed ENK-ir in all nuclei of the BLC. In addition, the somata of some pyramidal cells exhibited light to moderate ENK-ir. ENK+ axon terminals were also observed. Ultrastructural analysis confined to the BLa revealed that most ENK+ axon terminals formed asymmetrical synapses that mainly contacted spines and shafts of thin dendrites. ENK+ terminals forming symmetrical synapses mainly contacted dendritic shafts. Approximately 20% of NET+ terminals contacted a structure that was also contacted by an ENK+ terminal and 6% of NET+ terminals contacted an ENK+ terminal. These findings suggest that ENK and NE terminals in the BLa may interact by targeting common dendrites and by direct interactions between the two types of terminals. PMID:26835559

  8. Axonal transport of muscarinic cholinergic receptors in rat vagus nerve: high and low affinity agonist receptors move in opposite directions and differ in nucleotide sensitivity

    SciTech Connect

    Zarbin, M.A.; Wamsley, J.K.; Kuhar, M.J.

    1982-07-01

    The presence and transport of muscarinic cholinergic binding sites have been detected in the rat vagus nerve. These binding sites accumulate both proximal and distal to ligatures in a time-dependent manner. The results of double ligature and colchicine experiments are compatible with the notion that the anterogradely transported binding sites move by fast transport. Most of the sites accumulating proximal to ligatures bind the agonist carbachol with high affinity, while most of the sites accumulating distally bind carbachol with a low affinity. Also, the receptors transported in the anterograde direction are affected by a guanine nucleotide analogue (GppNHp), while those transported in the retrograde direction are less, or not, affected. The bulk of the sites along the unligated nerve trunk bind carbachol with a low affinity and are less sensitive to GppNHp modulation than the anterogradely transported sites. These results suggest that some receptors in the vagus may undergo axonal transport in association with regulatory proteins and that receptor molecules undergo changes in their binding and regulatory properties during their life cycle. These data also support the notion that the high and low affinity agonist form of the muscarinic receptor represent different modulated forms of a single receptor molecule.

  9. UNC-16 (JIP3) Acts Through Synapse-Assembly Proteins to Inhibit the Active Transport of Cell Soma Organelles to Caenorhabditis elegans Motor Neuron Axons.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Stacey L; Morrison, Logan M; Yorks, Rosalina M; Hoover, Christopher M; Boominathan, Soorajnath; Miller, Kenneth G

    2015-09-01

    The conserved protein UNC-16 (JIP3) inhibits the active transport of some cell soma organelles, such as lysosomes, early endosomes, and Golgi, to the synaptic region of axons. However, little is known about UNC-16's organelle transport regulatory function, which is distinct from its Kinesin-1 adaptor function. We used an unc-16 suppressor screen in Caenorhabditis elegans to discover that UNC-16 acts through CDK-5 (Cdk5) and two conserved synapse assembly proteins: SAD-1 (SAD-A Kinase), and SYD-2 (Liprin-α). Genetic analysis of all combinations of double and triple mutants in unc-16(+) and unc-16(-) backgrounds showed that the three proteins (CDK-5, SAD-1, and SYD-2) are all part of the same organelle transport regulatory system, which we named the CSS system based on its founder proteins. Further genetic analysis revealed roles for SYD-1 (another synapse assembly protein) and STRADα (a SAD-1-interacting protein) in the CSS system. In an unc-16(-) background, loss of the CSS system improved the sluggish locomotion of unc-16 mutants, inhibited axonal lysosome accumulation, and led to the dynein-dependent accumulation of lysosomes in dendrites. Time-lapse imaging of lysosomes in CSS system mutants in unc-16(+) and unc-16(-) backgrounds revealed active transport defects consistent with the steady-state distributions of lysosomes. UNC-16 also uses the CSS system to regulate the distribution of early endosomes in neurons and, to a lesser extent, Golgi. The data reveal a new and unprecedented role for synapse assembly proteins, acting as part of the newly defined CSS system, in mediating UNC-16's organelle transport regulatory function.

  10. Evaluation of Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thickness and Axonal Transport 1 and 2 Weeks After 8 Hours of Acute Intraocular Pressure Elevation in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Abbott, Carla J.; Choe, Tiffany E.; Lusardi, Theresa A.; Burgoyne, Claude F.; Wang, Lin; Fortune, Brad

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To compare in vivo retinal nerve fiber layer thickness (RNFLT) and axonal transport at 1 and 2 weeks after an 8-hour acute IOP elevation in rats. Methods. Forty-seven adult male Brown Norway rats were used. Procedures were performed under anesthesia. The IOP was manometrically elevated to 50 mm Hg or held at 15 mm Hg (sham) for 8 hours unilaterally. The RNFLT was measured by spectral-domain optical coherence tomography. Anterograde and retrograde axonal transport was assessed from confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy imaging 24 hours after bilateral injections of 2 μL 1% cholera toxin B-subunit conjugated to AlexaFluor 488 into the vitreous or superior colliculi, respectively. Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) and microglial densities were determined using antibodies against Brn3a and Iba-1. Results. The RNFLT in experimental eyes increased from baseline by 11% at 1 day (P < 0.001), peaked at 19% at 1 week (P < 0.0001), remained 11% thicker at 2 weeks (P < 0.001), recovered at 3 weeks (P > 0.05), and showed no sign of thinning at 6 weeks (P > 0.05). There was no disruption of anterograde transport at 1 week (superior colliculi fluorescence intensity, 75.3 ± 7.9 arbitrary units [AU] for the experimental eyes and 77.1 ± 6.7 AU for the control eyes) (P = 0.438) or 2 weeks (P = 0.188). There was no obstruction of retrograde transport at 1 week (RCG density, 1651 ± 153 per mm2 for the experimental eyes and 1615 ± 135 per mm2 for the control eyes) (P = 0.63) or 2 weeks (P = 0.25). There was no loss of Brn3a-positive RGC density at 6 weeks (P = 0.74) and no increase in microglial density (P = 0.92). Conclusions. Acute IOP elevation to 50 mm Hg for 8 hours does not cause a persisting axonal transport deficit at 1 or 2 weeks or a detectable RNFLT or RGC loss by 6 weeks but does lead to transient RNFL thickening that resolves by 3 weeks. PMID:24398096

  11. Loss of the Coffin-Lowry syndrome-associated gene RSK2 alters ERK activity, synaptic function and axonal transport in Drosophila motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Beck, Katherina; Ehmann, Nadine; Andlauer, Till F M; Ljaschenko, Dmitrij; Strecker, Katrin; Fischer, Matthias; Kittel, Robert J; Raabe, Thomas

    2015-11-01

    Plastic changes in synaptic properties are considered as fundamental for adaptive behaviors. Extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK)-mediated signaling has been implicated in regulation of synaptic plasticity. Ribosomal S6 kinase 2 (RSK2) acts as a regulator and downstream effector of ERK. In the brain, RSK2 is predominantly expressed in regions required for learning and memory. Loss-of-function mutations in human RSK2 cause Coffin-Lowry syndrome, which is characterized by severe mental retardation and low IQ scores in affected males. Knockout of RSK2 in mice or the RSK ortholog in Drosophila results in a variety of learning and memory defects. However, overall brain structure in these animals is not affected, leaving open the question of the pathophysiological consequences. Using the fly neuromuscular system as a model for excitatory glutamatergic synapses, we show that removal of RSK function causes distinct defects in motoneurons and at the neuromuscular junction. Based on histochemical and electrophysiological analyses, we conclude that RSK is required for normal synaptic morphology and function. Furthermore, loss of RSK function interferes with ERK signaling at different levels. Elevated ERK activity was evident in the somata of motoneurons, whereas decreased ERK activity was observed in axons and the presynapse. In addition, we uncovered a novel function of RSK in anterograde axonal transport. Our results emphasize the importance of fine-tuning ERK activity in neuronal processes underlying higher brain functions. In this context, RSK acts as a modulator of ERK signaling.

  12. Loss of the Coffin-Lowry syndrome-associated gene RSK2 alters ERK activity, synaptic function and axonal transport in Drosophila motoneurons

    PubMed Central

    Beck, Katherina; Ehmann, Nadine; Andlauer, Till F. M.; Ljaschenko, Dmitrij; Strecker, Katrin; Fischer, Matthias; Kittel, Robert J.; Raabe, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Plastic changes in synaptic properties are considered as fundamental for adaptive behaviors. Extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK)-mediated signaling has been implicated in regulation of synaptic plasticity. Ribosomal S6 kinase 2 (RSK2) acts as a regulator and downstream effector of ERK. In the brain, RSK2 is predominantly expressed in regions required for learning and memory. Loss-of-function mutations in human RSK2 cause Coffin-Lowry syndrome, which is characterized by severe mental retardation and low IQ scores in affected males. Knockout of RSK2 in mice or the RSK ortholog in Drosophila results in a variety of learning and memory defects. However, overall brain structure in these animals is not affected, leaving open the question of the pathophysiological consequences. Using the fly neuromuscular system as a model for excitatory glutamatergic synapses, we show that removal of RSK function causes distinct defects in motoneurons and at the neuromuscular junction. Based on histochemical and electrophysiological analyses, we conclude that RSK is required for normal synaptic morphology and function. Furthermore, loss of RSK function interferes with ERK signaling at different levels. Elevated ERK activity was evident in the somata of motoneurons, whereas decreased ERK activity was observed in axons and the presynapse. In addition, we uncovered a novel function of RSK in anterograde axonal transport. Our results emphasize the importance of fine-tuning ERK activity in neuronal processes underlying higher brain functions. In this context, RSK acts as a modulator of ERK signaling. PMID:26398944

  13. Human Genetic Disorders of Axon Guidance

    PubMed Central

    Engle, Elizabeth C.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews symptoms and signs of aberrant axon connectivity in humans, and summarizes major human genetic disorders that result, or have been proposed to result, from defective axon guidance. These include corpus callosum agenesis, L1 syndrome, Joubert syndrome and related disorders, horizontal gaze palsy with progressive scoliosis, Kallmann syndrome, albinism, congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles type 1, Duane retraction syndrome, and pontine tegmental cap dysplasia. Genes mutated in these disorders can encode axon growth cone ligands and receptors, downstream signaling molecules, and axon transport motors, as well as proteins without currently recognized roles in axon guidance. Advances in neuroimaging and genetic techniques have the potential to rapidly expand this field, and it is feasible that axon guidance disorders will soon be recognized as a new and significant category of human neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:20300212

  14. [Some case reports which suggest correlation between biologics and leprosy, Mini-symposium on problems on leprosy].

    PubMed

    Ishida, Yutaka

    2016-01-01

    Biologics are relatively new drugs developed through modern monoclonal antibody techniques and became more familiar to some disease treatments such as Rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, ankylosing spondylitis, ulcerative colitis, malignant lymphoma, SLE and lupus nephritis. Some case reports shows development of leprosy during/after biolo- gics treatment and success treatment of ENL with biologics. Collection of reports was done through web search by using document retrieval engine such as Pub-med and ProQuest. 7 cases of development of leprosy with biologics and 2 cases of ENL treatment with biologics and they were reported in the mini-symposium of Annual academic meeting of Japan Leprosy association. The widespread use of biologics reminds us of development of some infectious diseases as a side-effect and leprosy might be one of them. Because number of the reports was still very limited, we cannot go to further discussion at this moment. Accu- mulation of reported cases will lead the detailed information about correlation between biologics and leprosy, either on effectiveness or on adverse ones.

  15. Impaired mitochondrial biogenesis, defective axonal transport of mitochondria, abnormal mitochondrial dynamics and synaptic degeneration in a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Calkins, Marcus J; Manczak, Maria; Mao, Peizhong; Shirendeb, Ulziibat; Reddy, P Hemachandra

    2011-12-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that the accumulation of amyloid beta (Aβ) in synapses and synaptic mitochondria causes synaptic mitochondrial failure and synaptic degeneration in Alzheimer's disease (AD). The purpose of this study was to better understand the effects of Aβ in mitochondrial activity and synaptic alterations in neurons from a mouse model of AD. Using primary neurons from a well-characterized Aβ precursor protein transgenic (AβPP) mouse model (Tg2576 mouse line), for the first time, we studied mitochondrial activity, including axonal transport of mitochondria, mitochondrial dynamics, morphology and function. Further, we also studied the nature of Aβ-induced synaptic alterations, and cell death in primary neurons from Tg2576 mice, and we sought to determine whether the mitochondria-targeted antioxidant SS31 could mitigate the effects of oligomeric Aβ. We found significantly decreased anterograde mitochondrial movement, increased mitochondrial fission and decreased fusion, abnormal mitochondrial and synaptic proteins and defective mitochondrial function in primary neurons from AβPP mice compared with wild-type (WT) neurons. Transmission electron microscopy revealed a large number of small mitochondria and structurally damaged mitochondria, with broken cristae in AβPP primary neurons. We also found an increased accumulation of oligomeric Aβ and increased apoptotic neuronal death in the primary neurons from the AβPP mice relative to the WT neurons. Our results revealed an accumulation of intraneuronal oligomeric Aβ, leading to mitochondrial and synaptic deficiencies, and ultimately causing neurodegeneration in AβPP cultures. However, we found that the mitochondria-targeted antioxidant SS31 restored mitochondrial transport and synaptic viability, and decreased the percentage of defective mitochondria, indicating that SS31 protects mitochondria and synapses from Aβ toxicity.

  16. Retinal projections in the short-tailed fruit bat, Carollia perspicillata, as studied using the axonal transport of cholera toxin B subunit: Comparison with mouse.

    PubMed

    Scalia, Frank; Rasweiler, John J; Danias, John

    2015-08-15

    To provide a modern description of the Chiropteran visual system, the subcortical retinal projections were studied in the short-tailed fruit bat, Carollia perspicillata, using the anterograde transport of eye-injected cholera toxin B subunit, supplemented by the silver-impregnation of anterograde degeneration following eye removal, and compared with the retinal projections of the mouse. The retinal projections were heavily labeled by the transported toxin in both species. Almost all components of the murine retinal projection are present in Carollia in varying degrees of prominence and laterality. The projections: to the superior colliculus, accessory optic nuclei, and nucleus of the optic tract are predominantly or exclusively contralateral; to the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus and posterior pretectal nucleus are predominantly contralateral; to the ventral lateral geniculate nucleus, intergeniculate leaflet, and olivary pretectal nucleus have a substantial ipsilateral component; and to the suprachiasmatic nucleus are symmetrically bilateral. The retinal projection in Carollia is surprisingly reduced at the anterior end of the dorsal lateral geniculate and superior colliculus, suggestive of a paucity of the relevant ganglion cells in the ventrotemporal retina. In the superior colliculus, in which the superficial gray layer is very thin, the projection is patchy in places where the layer is locally absent. Except for a posteriorly located lateral terminal nucleus, the other accessory optic nuclei are diminutive in Carollia, as is the nucleus of the optic tract. In both species the cholera toxin labeled sparse groups of apparently terminating axons in numerous regions not listed above. A question of their significance is discussed.

  17. Optofluidic control of axonal guidance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gu, Ling; Ordonez, Simon; Black, Bryan; Mohanty, Samarendra K.

    2013-03-01

    Significant efforts are being made for control on axonal guidance due to its importance in nerve regeneration and in the formation of functional neuronal circuitry in-vitro. These include several physical (topographic modification, optical force, and electric field), chemical (surface functionalization cues) and hybrid (electro-chemical, photochemical etc) methods. Here, we report comparison of the effect of linear flow versus microfluidic flow produced by an opticallydriven micromotor in guiding retinal ganglion axons. A circularly polarized laser tweezers was used to hold, position and spin birefringent calcite particle near growth cone, which in turn resulted in microfluidic flow. The flow rate and resulting shear-force on axons could be controlled by a varying the power of the laser tweezers beam. The calcite particles were placed separately in one chamber and single particle was transported through microfluidic channel to another chamber containing the retina explant. In presence of flow, the turning of axons was found to strongly correlate with the direction of flow. Turning angle as high as 90° was achieved. Optofluidic-manipulation can be applied to other types of mammalian neurons and also can be extended to stimulate mechano-sensing neurons.

  18. Early posttranslational modifications of the three neurofilament subunits in mouse retinal ganglion cells: neuronal sites and time course in relation to subunit polymerization and axonal transport.

    PubMed

    Nixon, R A; Lewis, S E; Dahl, D; Marotta, C A; Drager, U C

    1989-03-01

    We have characterized stages in the posttranslational processing of the three neurofilament subunits, High (NF-H), Middle (NF-M), and Low (NF-L), in retinal ganglion cells in vivo during the interval between synthesis in cell bodies within the retina and appearance of these polypeptides in axons at the level of the optic nerve (optic axons). Neurofilament proteins pulse-labeled by injecting mice intravitreally with [35S]methionine or [32P]orthophosphate, were isolated from Triton-soluble and Triton-insoluble fractions of the retina or optic axons by immunoprecipitation or immunoaffinity chromatography. Within 2 h after [35S]methionine injection, the retina contained neurofilament-immunoreactive radiolabeled proteins with apparent molecular weights of 160, 139, and 70 kDa, which co-migrated with subunits of axonal neurofilaments that were dephosphorylated in vitro with alkaline phosphatase. The two larger polypeptides were not labeled with [32P]orthophosphate, indicating that they were relatively unmodified forms of NF-H and NF-M. About 75% of the subunits were Triton-insoluble by 2 h after isotope injection, and this percentage increased to 98% by 6 h. Labeled neurofilament polypeptides appeared in optic axons as early as 2 h after injection. These subunits exhibited apparent molecular weights of 160, 139, and 70 kDa and were Triton-insoluble. The time of appearance of fully modified polypeptide forms differed for each subunit (2 h for NF-L, 6-18 h for NF-M, 18-24 h for NF-H) and was preceded by the transient appearance of intermediate forms. The modified radiolabeled subunits in optic axons 3 days after synthesis were heavily labeled with [32P]orthophosphate and exhibited the same apparent molecular weights as subunits of axonal neurofilaments (70 kDa, 145 and 140 kDa, and 195-210 kDa, respectively). Whole mounts of retina immunostained with monoclonal antibodies against NF-H in different states of phosphorylation demonstrated a transition from non

  19. Axonal GABAA receptors.

    PubMed

    Trigo, Federico F; Marty, Alain; Stell, Brandon M

    2008-09-01

    Type A GABA receptors (GABA(A)Rs) are well established as the main inhibitory receptors in the mature mammalian forebrain. In recent years, evidence has accumulated showing that GABA(A)Rs are prevalent not only in the somatodendritic compartment of CNS neurons, but also in their axonal compartment. Evidence for axonal GABA(A)Rs includes new immunohistochemical and immunogold data: direct recording from single axonal terminals; and effects of local applications of GABA(A)R modulators on action potential generation, on axonal calcium signalling, and on neurotransmitter release. Strikingly, whereas presynaptic GABA(A)Rs have long been considered inhibitory, the new studies in the mammalian brain mostly indicate an excitatory action. Depending on the neuron that is under study, axonal GABA(A)Rs can be activated by ambient GABA, by GABA spillover, or by an autocrine action, to increase either action potential firing and/or transmitter release. In certain neurons, the excitatory effects of axonal GABA(A)Rs persist into adulthood. Altogether, axonal GABA(A)Rs appear as potent neuronal modulators of the mammalian CNS.

  20. Local Translation of Extranuclear Lamin B Promotes Axon Maintenance

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Byung C.; Jung, Hosung; Dwivedy, Asha; O'Hare, Catherine M.; Zivraj, Krishna H.; Holt, Christine E.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Local protein synthesis plays a key role in regulating stimulus-induced responses in dendrites and axons. Recent genome-wide studies have revealed that thousands of different transcripts reside in these distal neuronal compartments, but identifying those with functionally significant roles presents a challenge. We performed an unbiased screen to look for stimulus-induced, protein synthesis-dependent changes in the proteome ofXenopus retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons. The intermediate filament protein lamin B2 (LB2), normally associated with the nuclear membrane, was identified as an unexpected major target. Axonal ribosome immunoprecipitation confirmed translation of lb2 mRNA in vivo. Inhibition of lb2 mRNA translation in axons in vivo does not affect guidance but causes axonal degeneration. Axonal LB2 associates with mitochondria, and LB2-deficient axons exhibit mitochondrial dysfunction and defects in axonal transport. Our results thus suggest that axonally synthesized lamin B plays a crucial role in axon maintenance by promoting mitochondrial function. PMID:22341447

  1. Axons take a dive

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Cheuk Ka; Cebrián-Silla, Arantxa; Paredes, Mercedes F; Huang, Eric J; García-Verdugo, Jose Manuel; Alvarez-Buylla, Arturo

    2015-01-01

    In the walls of the lateral ventricles of the adult mammalian brain, neural stem cells (NSCs) and ependymal (E1) cells share the apical surface of the ventricular–subventricular zone (V–SVZ). In a recent article, we show that supraependymal serotonergic (5HT) axons originating from the raphe nuclei in mice form an extensive plexus on the walls of the lateral ventricles where they contact E1 cells and NSCs. Here we further characterize the contacts between 5HT supraependymal axons and E1 cells in mice, and show that suprependymal axons tightly associated to E1 cells are also present in the walls of the human lateral ventricles. These observations raise interesting questions about the function of supraependymal axons in the regulation of E1 cells. PMID:26413556

  2. Concepts for regulation of axon integrity by enwrapping glia

    PubMed Central

    Beirowski, Bogdan

    2013-01-01

    Long axons and their enwrapping glia (EG; Schwann cells (SCs) and oligodendrocytes (OLGs)) form a unique compound structure that serves as conduit for transport of electric and chemical information in the nervous system. The peculiar cytoarchitecture over an enormous length as well as its substantial energetic requirements make this conduit particularly susceptible to detrimental alterations. Degeneration of long axons independent of neuronal cell bodies is observed comparatively early in a range of neurodegenerative conditions as a consequence of abnormalities in SCs and OLGs . This leads to the most relevant disease symptoms and highlights the critical role that these glia have for axon integrity, but the underlying mechanisms remain elusive. The quest to understand why and how axons degenerate is now a crucial frontier in disease-oriented research. This challenge is most likely to lead to significant progress if the inextricable link between axons and their flanking glia in pathological situations is recognized. In this review I compile recent advances in our understanding of the molecular programs governing axon degeneration, and mechanisms of EG’s non-cell autonomous impact on axon-integrity. A particular focus is placed on emerging evidence suggesting that EG nurture long axons by virtue of their intimate association, release of trophic substances, and neurometabolic coupling. The correction of defects in these functions has the potential to stabilize axons in a variety of neuronal diseases in the peripheral nervous system and central nervous system (PNS and CNS). PMID:24391540

  3. The Number of Alphaherpesvirus Particles Infecting Axons and the Axonal Protein Repertoire Determines the Outcome of Neuronal Infection

    PubMed Central

    Koyuncu, Orkide O.; Song, Ren; Greco, Todd M.; Cristea, Ileana M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Infection by alphaherpesviruses invariably results in invasion of the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and establishment of either a latent or productive infection. Infection begins with long-distance retrograde transport of viral capsids and tegument proteins in axons toward the neuronal nuclei. Initial steps of axonal entry, retrograde transport, and replication in neuronal nuclei are poorly understood. To better understand how the mode of infection in the PNS is determined, we utilized a compartmented neuron culturing system where distal axons of PNS neurons are physically separated from cell bodies. We infected isolated axons with fluorescent-protein-tagged pseudorabies virus (PRV) particles and monitored viral entry and transport in axons and replication in cell bodies during low and high multiplicities of infection (MOIs of 0.01 to 100). We found a threshold for efficient retrograde transport in axons between MOIs of 1 and 10 and a threshold for productive infection in the neuronal cell bodies between MOIs of 1 and 0.1. Below an MOI of 0.1, the viral genomes that moved to neuronal nuclei were silenced. These genomes can be reactivated after superinfection by a nonreplicating virus, but not by a replicating virus. We further showed that viral particles at high-MOI infections compete for axonal proteins and that this competition determines the number of viral particles reaching the nuclei. Using mass spectrometry, we identified axonal proteins that are differentially regulated by PRV infection. Our results demonstrate the impact of the multiplicity of infection and the axonal milieu on the establishment of neuronal infection initiated from axons. PMID:25805728

  4. Building and maintaining the axon initial segment

    PubMed Central

    Grubb, Matthew S.; Burrone, Juan

    2011-01-01

    The axon initial segment is a unique neuronal subregion involved in the initiation of action potentials and in the control of axonal identity. Recent work has helped our understanding of how this specialised structure develops, not least in identifying possible mechanisms leading to the localisation of the AIS’s master organiser protein, ankyrin-G. The most exciting current work, however, focuses on later aspects of AIS function and plasticity. Recent studies have shown that the AIS is subdivided into distinct structural and functional domains, have demonstrated how the AIS acts as a cytoplasmic barrier for axonal transport, and have discovered that the AIS can be surprisingly plastic in its responses to alterations in neuronal activity. PMID:20537529

  5. Axonal maintenance, glia, exosomes, and heat shock proteins

    PubMed Central

    Tytell, Michael; Lasek, Raymond J.; Gainer, Harold

    2016-01-01

    Of all cellular specializations, the axon is especially distinctive because it is a narrow cylinder of specialized cytoplasm called axoplasm with a length that may be orders of magnitude greater than the diameter of the cell body from which it originates. Thus, the volume of axoplasm can be much greater than the cytoplasm in the cell body. This fact raises a logistical problem with regard to axonal maintenance. Many of the components of axoplasm, such as soluble proteins and cytoskeleton, are slowly transported, taking weeks to months to travel the length of axons longer than a few millimeters after being synthesized in the cell body. Furthermore, this slow rate of supply suggests that the axon itself might not have the capacity to respond fast enough to compensate for damage to transported macromolecules. Such damage is likely in view of the mechanical fragility of an axon, especially those innervating the limbs, as rapid limb motion with high impact, like running, subjects the axons in the limbs to considerable mechanical force. Some researchers have suggested that local, intra-axonal protein synthesis is the answer to this problem. However, the translational state of axonal RNAs remains controversial. We suggest that glial cells, which envelop all axons, whether myelinated or not, are the local sources of replacement and repair macromolecules for long axons. The plausibility of this hypothesis is reinforced by reviewing several decades of work on glia-axon macromolecular transfer, together with recent investigations of exosomes and other extracellular vesicles, as vehicles for the transmission of membrane and cytoplasmic components from one cell to another. PMID:26962444

  6. Protein phosphorylation: Localization in regenerating optic axons

    SciTech Connect

    Larrivee, D. )

    1990-09-01

    A number of axonal proteins display changes in phosphorylation during goldfish optic nerve regeneration. (1) To determine whether the phosphorylation of these proteins was closely linked to their synthesis in the retinal ganglion cell body, cycloheximide was injected intraocularly into goldfish whose optic nerves had been regenerating for 3 weeks. Cycloheximide reduced the incorporation of (3H)proline and 32P orthophosphate into total nerve protein by 84% and 46%, respectively. Of the 20 individual proteins examined, 17 contained less than 15% of the (3H)proline label measured in corresponding controls, whereas 18 proteins contained 50% or more of the 32P label, suggesting that phosphorylation was largely independent of synthesis. (2) To determine whether the proteins were phosphorylated in the ganglion cell axons, axonal transport of proteins was blocked by intraocular injection of vincristine. Vincristine reduced (3H)proline labeling of total protein by 88% and 32P labeling by 49%. Among the individual proteins (3H)proline labeling was reduced by 90% or more in 18 cases but 32P labeling was reduced only by 50% or less. (3) When 32P was injected into the cranial cavity near the ends of the optic axons, all of the phosphoproteins were labeled more intensely in the optic tract than in the optic nerve. These results suggest that most of the major phosphoproteins that undergo changes in phosphorylation in the course of regeneration are phosphorylated in the optic axons.

  7. Axonal isoforms of myosin-I.

    PubMed

    Lund, Linda M; Machado, Victor M; McQuarrie, Irvine G

    2005-05-13

    We have examined spinal motor neurons in Sprague-Dawley rats to further characterize a mechanoenzyme, myosin-Igamma (myr4), which is found in high concentration during axon tract formation in neonates. We raised an antibody to myr4 and made riboprobes for in situ hybridization. Myr4 mRNA was abundant in spinal cord motor neurons (particularly during axon regrowth). Nerves undergoing Wallerian degeneration (from a crush 7 days earlier) showed anti-myr4 labeling of the axolemma and SER--after microtubules, neurofilaments, and F-actin had already been degraded--which is consistent with a described lipid-binding domain in the tail region of myosin-Is. Newly synthesized myr4 was carried in axons by the slow component (SC) of axonal transport at 1-8 mm/day, whereas, none was carried by the fast component (FC). We conclude that SC delivers myr4 to the cytoplasmic surfaces of stationary axonal membranes (SER and axolemma). This positioning would anchor the tail domain of myr4 and leave the catalytic head domain free to interact with F-actin.

  8. Mechanical Properties of Axons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernal, Roberto; Pullarkat, Pramod A.; Melo, Francisco

    2007-07-01

    The mechanical response of PC12 neurites under tension is investigated using a microneedle technique. Elastic response, viscoelastic relaxation, and active contraction are observed. The mechanical model proposed by Dennerll et al. [J. Cell Biol. 109, 3073 (1989).JCLBA30021-952510.1083/jcb.109.6.3073], which involves three mechanical devices—a stiff spring κ coupled with a Voigt element that includes a less stiff spring k and a dashpot γ—has been improved by adding a new element to describe the main features of the contraction of axons. This element, which represents the action of molecular motors, acts in parallel with viscous forces defining a global tension response of axons T against elongation rates δ˙k. Under certain conditions, axons show a transition from a viscoelastic elongation to active contraction, suggesting the presence of a negative elongation rate sensitivity in the curve T vs δ˙k.

  9. Axons provide the secretory machinery for trafficking of voltage-gated sodium channels in peripheral nerve

    PubMed Central

    González, Carolina; Cánovas, José; Fresno, Javiera; Couve, Eduardo; Court, Felipe A.; Couve, Andrés

    2016-01-01

    The regulation of the axonal proteome is key to generate and maintain neural function. Fast and slow axoplasmic waves have been known for decades, but alternative mechanisms to control the abundance of axonal proteins based on local synthesis have also been identified. The presence of the endoplasmic reticulum has been documented in peripheral axons, but it is still unknown whether this localized organelle participates in the delivery of axonal membrane proteins. Voltage-gated sodium channels are responsible for action potentials and are mostly concentrated in the axon initial segment and nodes of Ranvier. Despite their fundamental role, little is known about the intracellular trafficking mechanisms that govern their availability in mature axons. Here we describe the secretory machinery in axons and its contribution to plasma membrane delivery of sodium channels. The distribution of axonal secretory components was evaluated in axons of the sciatic nerve and in spinal nerve axons after in vivo electroporation. Intracellular protein trafficking was pharmacologically blocked in vivo and in vitro. Axonal voltage-gated sodium channel mRNA and local trafficking were examined by RT-PCR and a retention-release methodology. We demonstrate that mature axons contain components of the endoplasmic reticulum and other biosynthetic organelles. Axonal organelles and sodium channel localization are sensitive to local blockade of the endoplasmic reticulum to Golgi transport. More importantly, secretory organelles are capable of delivering sodium channels to the plasma membrane in isolated axons, demonstrating an intrinsic capacity of the axonal biosynthetic route in regulating the axonal proteome in mammalian axons. PMID:26839409

  10. Changes in microtubule stability and density in myelin-deficient shiverer mouse CNS axons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirkpatrick, L. L.; Witt, A. S.; Payne, H. R.; Shine, H. D.; Brady, S. T.

    2001-01-01

    Altered axon-Schwann cell interactions in PNS myelin-deficient Trembler mice result in changed axonal transport rates, neurofilament and microtubule-associated protein phosphorylation, neurofilament density, and microtubule stability. To determine whether PNS and CNS myelination have equivalent effects on axons, neurofilaments, and microtubules in CNS, myelin-deficient shiverer axons were examined. The genetic defect in shiverer is a deletion in the myelin basic protein (MBP) gene, an essential component of CNS myelin. As a result, shiverer mice have little or no compact CNS myelin. Slow axonal transport rates in shiverer CNS axons were significantly increased, in contrast to the slowing in demyelinated PNS nerves. Even more striking were substantial changes in the composition and properties of microtubules in shiverer CNS axons. The density of axonal microtubules is increased, reflecting increased expression of tubulin in shiverer, and the stability of microtubules is drastically reduced in shiverer axons. Shiverer transgenic mice with two copies of a wild-type myelin basic protein transgene have an intermediate level of compact myelin, making it possible to determine whether the actual level of compact myelin is an important regulator of axonal microtubules. Both increased microtubule density and reduced microtubule stability were still observed in transgenic mouse nerves, indicating that signals beyond synaptogenesis and the mere presence of compact myelin are required for normal regulation of the axonal microtubule cytoskeleton.

  11. Rafting along the axon on Unc104 motors.

    PubMed

    Scholey, Jonathan M

    2002-05-01

    Neurotransmission depends upon the fast axonal transport of synaptic vesicle precursors by the monomeric kinesin Unc104, a motor whose mechanism of action is a topic of debate. New work suggests that the formation of lipid raft domains triggers the assembly of vesicle-bound Unc104 dimers and the concomitant activation of processive movement, facilitating efficient long-range vesicle transport.

  12. Axon specification in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Fukata, Yuko; Kimura, Toshihide; Kaibuchi, Kozo

    2002-08-01

    Neurons are the most highly polarized cells, comprised of two structurally and functionally distinct parts, axons and dendrites. This asymmetry enables a vectorial flow of signaling within neurons. One of the most fundamental questions still to be answered in neuroscience is how these two specialized processes initially develop. The first manifestation of polarization occurs when one of the immature neurites acquires axonal characteristics. We review recent advances that have highlighted the involvement of several cellular events in the initial formation of the axon, including membrane traffic and cytoskeletal rearrangement. We then discuss the molecular mechanisms underlying axon formation, focusing on the Rho family small GTPases and an axon-inducing neuronal protein, CRMP-2.

  13. Differential compartmentalization of mRNAs in squid giant axon.

    PubMed

    Chun, J T; Gioio, A E; Crispino, M; Giuditta, A; Kaplan, B B

    1996-11-01

    Previously, we reported that the squid giant axon contains a heterogeneous population of mRNAs that includes beta-actin, beta-tubulin, kinesin, neurofilament proteins, and enolase. To define the absolute levels and relative distribution of these mRNAs, we have used competitive reverse transcription-PCR to quantify the levels of five mRNAs present in the giant axon and giant fiber lobe (GFL), the location of the parental cell soma. In the GFL, the number of transcripts for these mRNAs varied over a fourfold range, with beta-tubulin being the most abundant mRNA species (1.25 x 10(9) molecules per GFL). Based on transcript number, the rank order of mRNA levels in the GFL was beta-tubulin > beta-actin > kinesin > enolase > microtubule-associated protein (MAP) H1. In contrast, kinesin mRNA was most abundant in the axon (4.1 x 10(7) molecules per axon) with individual mRNA levels varying 15-fold. The rank order of mRNA levels in the axon was kinesin > beta-tubulin > MAP H1 > beta-actin > enolase. The relative abundance of the mRNA species in the axon did not correlate with the size of the transcript, nor was it directly related to their corresponding levels in the GFL. Taken together, these findings confirm that significant amounts of mRNA are present in the giant axon and suggest that specific mRNAs are differentially transported into the axonal domain.

  14. Intra-axonal protein synthesis – a new target for neural repair?

    PubMed Central

    Twiss, Jeffery L.; Kalinski, Ashley L.; Sachdeva, Rahul; Houle, John D.

    2016-01-01

    Although initially argued to be a feature of immature neurons with incomplete polarization, there is clear evidence that neurons in the peripheral nervous system retain the capacity for intra-axonal protein synthesis well into adulthood. This localized protein synthesis has been shown to contribute to injury signaling and axon regeneration in peripheral nerves. Recent works point to potential for protein synthesis in axons of the vertebrate central nervous system. mRNAs and protein synthesis machinery have now been documented in lamprey, mouse, and rat spinal cord axons. Intra-axonal protein synthesis appears to be activated in adult vertebrate spinal cord axons when they are regeneration-competent. Rat spinal cord axons regenerating into a peripheral nerve graft contain mRNAs and markers of activated translational machinery. Indeed, levels of some growth-associated mRNAs in these spinal cord axons are comparable to the regenerating sciatic nerve. Markers of active translation tend to decrease when these axons stop growing, but can be reactivated by a second axotomy. These emerging observations raise the possibility that mRNA transport into and translation within axons could be targeted to facilitate regeneration in both the peripheral and central nervous systems. PMID:27857722

  15. Intra-axonal protein synthesis - a new target for neural repair?

    PubMed

    Twiss, Jeffery L; Kalinski, Ashley L; Sachdeva, Rahul; Houle, John D

    2016-09-01

    Although initially argued to be a feature of immature neurons with incomplete polarization, there is clear evidence that neurons in the peripheral nervous system retain the capacity for intra-axonal protein synthesis well into adulthood. This localized protein synthesis has been shown to contribute to injury signaling and axon regeneration in peripheral nerves. Recent works point to potential for protein synthesis in axons of the vertebrate central nervous system. mRNAs and protein synthesis machinery have now been documented in lamprey, mouse, and rat spinal cord axons. Intra-axonal protein synthesis appears to be activated in adult vertebrate spinal cord axons when they are regeneration-competent. Rat spinal cord axons regenerating into a peripheral nerve graft contain mRNAs and markers of activated translational machinery. Indeed, levels of some growth-associated mRNAs in these spinal cord axons are comparable to the regenerating sciatic nerve. Markers of active translation tend to decrease when these axons stop growing, but can be reactivated by a second axotomy. These emerging observations raise the possibility that mRNA transport into and translation within axons could be targeted to facilitate regeneration in both the peripheral and central nervous systems.

  16. Antisense Morpholino Oligonucleotides Reduce Neurofilament Synthesis and Inhibit Axon Regeneration in Lamprey Reticulospinal Neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guixin; Jin, Li-qing; Hu, Jianli; Rodemer, William; Selzer, Michael E

    2015-01-01

    The sea lamprey has been used as a model for the study of axonal regeneration after spinal cord injury. Previous studies have suggested that, unlike developing axons in mammal, the tips of regenerating axons in lamprey spinal cord are simple in shape, packed with neurofilaments (NFs), and contain very little F-actin. Thus it has been proposed that regeneration of axons in the central nervous system of mature vertebrates is not based on the canonical actin-dependent pulling mechanism of growth cones, but involves an internal protrusive force, perhaps generated by the transport or assembly of NFs in the distal axon. In order to assess this hypothesis, expression of NFs was manipulated by antisense morpholino oligonucleotides (MO). A standard, company-supplied MO was used as control. Axon retraction and regeneration were assessed at 2, 4 and 9 weeks after MOs were applied to a spinal cord transection (TX) site. Antisense MO inhibited NF180 expression compared to control MO. The effect of inhibiting NF expression on axon retraction and regeneration was studied by measuring the distance of axon tips from the TX site at 2 and 4 weeks post-TX, and counting the number of reticulospinal neurons (RNs) retrogradely labeled by fluorescently-tagged dextran injected caudal to the injury at 9 weeks post-TX. There was no statistically significant effect of MO on axon retraction at 2 weeks post-TX. However, at both 4 and 9 weeks post-TX, inhibition of NF expression inhibited axon regeneration.

  17. Loss of MEC-17 Leads to Microtubule Instability and Axonal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Neumann, Brent; Hilliard, Massimo A.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Axonal degeneration arises as a consequence of neuronal injury and is a common hallmark of a number of neurodegenerative diseases. However, the genetic causes and the cellular mechanisms that trigger this process are still largely unknown. Based on forward genetic screening in C. elegans, we have identified the α-tubulin acetyltransferase gene mec-17 as causing spontaneous, adult-onset, and progressive axonal degeneration. Loss of MEC-17 leads to microtubule instability, a reduction in mitochondrial number, and disrupted axonal transport, with altered distribution of both mitochondria and synaptic components. Furthermore, mec-17-mediated axonal degeneration occurs independently from its acetyltransferase domain; is enhanced by mutation of coel-1, a tubulin-associated molecule; and correlates with the animal’s body length. This study therefore identifies a critical role for the conserved microtubule-associated protein MEC-17 in preserving axon integrity and preventing axonal degeneration. PMID:24373971

  18. Role of calpains in the injury-induced dysfunction and degeneration of the mammalian axon

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Marek

    2013-01-01

    Axonal injury and degeneration, whether primary or secondary, contribute to the morbidity and mortality seen in many acquired and inherited central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS) disorders, such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, cerebral ischemia, neurodegenerative diseases, and peripheral neuropathies. The calpain family of proteases has been mechanistically linked to the dysfunction and degeneration of axons. While the direct mechanisms by which transection, mechanical strain, ischemia, or complement activation trigger intra-axonal calpain activity are likely different, the downstream effects of unregulated calpain activity may be similar in seemingly disparate diseases. In this review, a brief examination of axonal structure is followed by a focused overview of the calpain family. Finally, the mechanisms by which calpains may disrupt the axonal cytoskeleton, transport, and specialized domains (axon initial segment, nodes, and terminals) are discussed. PMID:23969238

  19. Biochemical analysis of axon-specific phosphorylation events using isolated squid axoplasms.

    PubMed

    Kang, Minsu; Baker, Lisa; Song, Yuyu; Brady, Scott T; Morfini, Gerardo

    2016-01-01

    Appropriate functionality of nodes of Ranvier, presynaptic terminals, and other axonal subdomains depends on efficient and timely delivery of proteins synthesized and packaged into membrane-bound organelles (MBOs) within the neuronal cell body. MBOs are transported and delivered to their final sites of utilization within axons by a cellular process known as fast axonal transport (FAT). Conventional kinesin, the most abundant multisubunit motor protein expressed in mature neurons, is responsible for FAT of a large variety of MBOs and plays a major role in the maintenance of appropriate axonal connectivity. Consistent with the variety and large number of discrete subdomains within axons, experimental evidence revealed the identity of several protein kinases that modulate specific functional activities of conventional kinesin. Thus, methods for the analysis of kinase activity and conventional kinesin phosphorylation facilitate the study of FAT regulation in health and disease conditions. Axonal degeneration, abnormal patterns of protein phosphorylation, and deficits in FAT represent early pathological features characteristic of neurological diseases caused by unrelated neuropathogenic proteins. Interestingly, some of these proteins were shown to produce deficits in FAT by modulating the activity of specific protein kinases involved in conventional kinesin phosphorylation. However, experimental systems that facilitate an evaluation of molecular events within axons remain scarce. Using the isolated squid axoplasm preparation, we describe methods for evaluating axon-autonomous effects of neuropathogenic proteins on the activity of protein kinases. Protocols are also provided to evaluate the effect of such proteins on the phosphorylation of endogenous axonal substrates, including conventional kinesin and neurofilaments.

  20. Neurofilaments form a Highly Stable Stationary Cytoskeleton After Reaching a Critical Level in Axons

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Aidong; Sasaki, Takahiro; Rao, Mala V.; Kumar, Asok; Kanumuri, Vivek; Dunlop, David S.; Liem, Ronald K.; Nixon, Ralph A.

    2009-01-01

    The ultrastructural view of the axonal cytoskeleton as an extensively crosslinked network of neurofilaments (NFs) and other cytoskeletal polymers contrasts with the dynamic view suggested by axonal transport studies on cytoskeletal elements. Here we reconcile these perspectives by showing that neurons form a large NF network along axons which is unequivocally stationary, metabolically stable, and maintained by NFs and non-filamentous subunit assemblies undergoing slow transport by intermittent rapid movements and pauses. In mouse primary cortical neurons transfected with EGFP-NFL, formation of this stationary NF network requires a critical level of NFs, which explains its absence in NF-poor developing neurons studied previously. Most NFs at proximal axon regions were in a stationary structure coexisting with a smaller pool of moving EGFP-NFL assemblies that were mainly non-filamentous. Distally along the same axon, EGFP-labeled NFL was much less abundant and we detected only short filaments moving bidirectionally by slow transport (rapid movements and pauses) as previously described. In living mice, >25% of radiolabeled newly synthesized NFs remained in optic axons after slowly transport NFs had exited. Retained NF remained fixed over several months in a non-uniform distribution and exhibited exceptionally slow turnover (t 1/2 > 2.5 months), implying that, at steady state, >90% of NFs in mature optic axons comprise the stationary cytoskeleton and <10% are undergoing slow transport. These findings reconcile in vitro and in vivo axonal transport observations, showing that slowly transport NFs or subunit oligomers are precursors to a highly stable stationary cytoskeletal network that supports mature axons. PMID:19741138

  1. Axonal dysfunction in internal capsule is closely associated with early motor deficits after intracerebral hemorrhage in mice.

    PubMed

    Hijioka, Masanori; Anan, Junpei; Matsushita, Hideaki; Ishibashi, Hayato; Kurauchi, Yuki; Hisatsune, Akinori; Seki, Takahiro; Katsuki, Hiroshi

    2016-05-01

    Previously we showed that expansion of intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) into the internal capsule greatly aggravated neurological symptoms in mice. Here we examined ICH-associated events in the internal capsule with relation to neurological dysfunction. Corticospinal axons labeled by biotinylated dextran amine exhibited fragmented appearance after ICH induced by local injection of collagenase into the internal capsule. Fragmentation of axonal structures was confirmed by neurofilament-H immunostaining, which was evident from 6h after induction of ICH. We also observed accumulation of amyloid precursor protein, which indicated compromised axonal transport, from 3h after induction of ICH. The early defect in axonal transport was accompanied by a robust decline in motor performance. Local application of an axonal transport inhibitor colchicine to the internal capsule induced a prompt decline in motor performance, suggesting that compromised axonal transport is closely associated with early neurological dysfunction in ICH. Arrest of axonal transport and fragmentation of axonal structures were also induced by local injection of thrombin, but not by thrombin receptor activator peptide-6, a protease-activated receptor-1 agonist. These results suggest that receptor-independent actions of thrombin mediate disruption of structure and function of axons by hemorrhage expansion into the internal capsule, which leads to severe neurological dysfunction.

  2. The Microtubule Regulatory Protein Stathmin Is Required to Maintain the Integrity of Axonal Microtubules in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Jason E.; Lytle, Nikki K.; Zuniga, Alfredo; Goldstein, Lawrence S. B.

    2013-01-01

    Axonal transport, a form of long-distance, bi-directional intracellular transport that occurs between the cell body and synaptic terminal, is critical in maintaining the function and viability of neurons. We have identified a requirement for the stathmin (stai) gene in the maintenance of axonal microtubules and regulation of axonal transport in Drosophila. The stai gene encodes a cytosolic phosphoprotein that regulates microtubule dynamics by partitioning tubulin dimers between pools of soluble tubulin and polymerized microtubules, and by directly binding to microtubules and promoting depolymerization. Analysis of stai function in Drosophila, which has a single stai gene, circumvents potential complications with studies performed in vertebrate systems in which mutant phenotypes may be compensated by genetic redundancy of other members of the stai gene family. This has allowed us to identify an essential function for stai in the maintenance of the integrity of axonal microtubules. In addition to the severe disruption in the abundance and architecture of microtubules in the axons of stai mutant Drosophila, we also observe additional neurological phenotypes associated with loss of stai function including a posterior paralysis and tail-flip phenotype in third instar larvae, aberrant accumulation of transported membranous organelles in stai deficient axons, a progressive bang-sensitive response to mechanical stimulation reminiscent of the class of Drosophila mutants used to model human epileptic seizures, and a reduced adult lifespan. Reductions in the levels of Kinesin-1, the primary anterograde motor in axonal transport, enhance these phenotypes. Collectively, our results indicate that stai has an important role in neuronal function, likely through the maintenance of microtubule integrity in the axons of nerves of the peripheral nervous system necessary to support and sustain long-distance axonal transport. PMID:23840848

  3. Completely assembled virus particles detected by transmission electron microscopy in proximal and mid-axons of neurons infected with herpes simplex virus type 1, herpes simplex virus type 2 and pseudorabies virus

    SciTech Connect

    Huang Jialing Lazear, Helen M. Friedman, Harvey M.

    2011-01-05

    The morphology of alphaherpesviruses during anterograde axonal transport from the neuron cell body towards the axon terminus is controversial. Reports suggest that transport of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) nucleocapsids and envelope proteins occurs in separate compartments and that complete virions form at varicosities or axon termini (subassembly transport model), while transport of a related alphaherpesvirus, pseudorabies virus (PRV) occurs as enveloped capsids in vesicles (assembled transport model). Transmission electron microscopy of proximal and mid-axons of primary superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons was used to compare anterograde axonal transport of HSV-1, HSV-2 and PRV. SCG cell bodies were infected with HSV-1 NS and 17, HSV-2 2.12 and PRV Becker. Fully assembled virus particles were detected intracellularly within vesicles in proximal and mid-axons adjacent to microtubules after infection with each virus, indicating that assembled virions are transported anterograde within axons for all three alphaherpesviruses.

  4. Thiazolidinediones promote axonal growth through the activation of the JNK pathway.

    PubMed

    Quintanilla, Rodrigo A; Godoy, Juan A; Alfaro, Ivan; Cabezas, Deny; von Bernhardi, Rommy; Bronfman, Miguel; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2013-01-01

    The axon is a neuronal process involved in protein transport, synaptic plasticity, and neural regeneration. It has been suggested that their structure and function are profoundly impaired in neurodegenerative diseases. Previous evidence suggest that Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptors-γ (PPARγ promote neuronal differentiation on various neuronal cell types. In addition, we demonstrated that activation of PPARγby thiazolidinediones (TZDs) drugs that selectively activate PPARγ prevent neurite loss and axonal damage induced by amyloid-β (Aβ). However, the potential role of TZDs in axonal elongation and neuronal polarity has not been explored. We report here that the activation of PPARγ by TZDs promoted axon elongation in primary hippocampal neurons. Treatments with different TZDs significantly increased axonal growth and branching area, but no significant effects were observed in neurite elongation compared to untreated neurons. Treatment with PPARγ antagonist (GW 9662) prevented TZDs-induced axonal growth. Recently, it has been suggested that the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) plays an important role regulating axonal growth and neuronal polarity. Interestingly, in our studies, treatment with TZDs induced activation of the JNK pathway, and the pharmacological blockage of this pathway prevented axon elongation induced by TZDs. Altogether, these results indicate that activation of JNK induced by PPARγactivators stimulates axonal growth and accelerates neuronal polarity. These novel findings may contribute to the understanding of the effects of PPARγ on neuronal differentiation and validate the use of PPARγ activators as therapeutic agents in neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. Thiazolidinediones Promote Axonal Growth through the Activation of the JNK Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Quintanilla, Rodrigo A.; Godoy, Juan A.; Alfaro, Ivan; Cabezas, Deny; von Bernhardi, Rommy; Bronfman, Miguel; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.

    2013-01-01

    The axon is a neuronal process involved in protein transport, synaptic plasticity, and neural regeneration. It has been suggested that their structure and function are profoundly impaired in neurodegenerative diseases. Previous evidence suggest that Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptors-γ (PPARγ promote neuronal differentiation on various neuronal cell types. In addition, we demonstrated that activation of PPARγby thiazolidinediones (TZDs) drugs that selectively activate PPARγ prevent neurite loss and axonal damage induced by amyloid-β (Aβ). However, the potential role of TZDs in axonal elongation and neuronal polarity has not been explored. We report here that the activation of PPARγ by TZDs promoted axon elongation in primary hippocampal neurons. Treatments with different TZDs significantly increased axonal growth and branching area, but no significant effects were observed in neurite elongation compared to untreated neurons. Treatment with PPARγ antagonist (GW 9662) prevented TZDs-induced axonal growth. Recently, it has been suggested that the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) plays an important role regulating axonal growth and neuronal polarity. Interestingly, in our studies, treatment with TZDs induced activation of the JNK pathway, and the pharmacological blockage of this pathway prevented axon elongation induced by TZDs. Altogether, these results indicate that activation of JNK induced by PPARγactivators stimulates axonal growth and accelerates neuronal polarity. These novel findings may contribute to the understanding of the effects of PPARγ on neuronal differentiation and validate the use of PPARγ activators as therapeutic agents in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23741474

  6. [Mechanisms of growth of neuronal axons and dendrites].

    PubMed

    Lest'anová, Z; Bacová, Z; Havránek, T; Bakos, J

    2013-01-01

    Brain development is determined by neuronal differentiation including changes of cell polarity and asymetric growth of neuronal processes. Although, there are many unkown factors contributing to changes of lenght of neuronal cones, mounting experimental and review papers focus on changes of growth conus and role of axonal transport. In particular, mechanisms of actin/microtubule polymerisation and depolymerisation are important. Role of intracellular calcium is also significant. Normal and properly timed changes of lenght of axons and dendrites are dependent on interaction of neurons and glia. Moreover, regeneration of injured axons is dependent on growth factors secreted from glial cells. The aim of the present study is characterisation of the most important mechanisms underlying changes of lenght of neurites.

  7. Transcellular degradation of axonal mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Chung-ha O.; Kim, Keun-Young; Bushong, Eric A.; Mills, Elizabeth A.; Boassa, Daniela; Shih, Tiffany; Kinebuchi, Mira; Phan, Sebastien; Zhou, Yi; Bihlmeyer, Nathan A.; Nguyen, Judy V.; Jin, Yunju; Ellisman, Mark H.; Marsh-Armstrong, Nicholas

    2014-01-01

    It is generally accepted that healthy cells degrade their own mitochondria. Here, we report that retinal ganglion cell axons of WT mice shed mitochondria at the optic nerve head (ONH), and that these mitochondria are internalized and degraded by adjacent astrocytes. EM demonstrates that mitochondria are shed through formation of large protrusions that originate from otherwise healthy axons. A virally introduced tandem fluorophore protein reporter of acidified mitochondria reveals that acidified axonal mitochondria originating from the retinal ganglion cell are associated with lysosomes within columns of astrocytes in the ONH. According to this reporter, a greater proportion of retinal ganglion cell mitochondria are degraded at the ONH than in the ganglion cell soma. Consistently, analyses of degrading DNA reveal extensive mtDNA degradation within the optic nerve astrocytes, some of which comes from retinal ganglion cell axons. Together, these results demonstrate that surprisingly large proportions of retinal ganglion cell axonal mitochondria are normally degraded by the astrocytes of the ONH. This transcellular degradation of mitochondria, or transmitophagy, likely occurs elsewhere in the CNS, because structurally similar accumulations of degrading mitochondria are also found along neurites in superficial layers of the cerebral cortex. Thus, the general assumption that neurons or other cells necessarily degrade their own mitochondria should be reconsidered. PMID:24979790

  8. Axonal Localization of Integrins in the CNS Is Neuronal Type and Age Dependent

    PubMed Central

    Soleman, Sara; Mason, Matthew R. J.; Verhaagen, Joost; Bensadoun, Jean-Charles; Aebischer, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    The regenerative ability of CNS axons decreases with age, however, this ability remains largely intact in PNS axons throughout adulthood. These differences are likely to correspond with age-related silencing of proteins necessary for axon growth and elongation. In previous studies, it has been shown that reintroduction of the α9 integrin subunit (tenascin-C receptor, α9) that is downregulated in adult CNS can improve neurite outgrowth and sensory axon regeneration after a dorsal rhizotomy or a dorsal column crush spinal cord lesion. In the current study, we demonstrate that virally expressed integrins (α9, α6, or β1 integrin) in the adult rat sensorimotor cortex and adult red nucleus are excluded from axons following neuronal transduction. Attempts to stimulate transport by inclusion of a cervical spinal injury and thus an upregulation of extracellular matrix molecules at the lesion site, or cotransduction with its binding partner, β1 integrin, did not induce integrin localization within axons. In contrast, virally expressed α9 integrin in developing rat cortex (postnatal day 5 or 10) demonstrated clear localization of integrins in cortical axons revealed by the presence of integrin in the axons of the corpus callosum and internal capsule, as well as in the neuronal cell body. Furthermore, examination of dorsal root ganglia neurons and retinal ganglion cells demonstrated integrin localization both within peripheral nerve as well as dorsal root axons and within optic nerve axons, respectively. Together, our results suggest a differential ability for in vivo axonal transport of transmembrane proteins dependent on neuronal age and subtype. PMID:27570822

  9. Mechanisms of Distal Axonal Degeneration in Peripheral Neuropathies

    PubMed Central

    Cashman, Christopher R.; Höke, Ahmet

    2015-01-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is a common complication of a variety of diseases and treatments, including diabetes, cancer chemotherapy, and infectious causes (HIV, hepatitis C, and Campylobacter jejuni). Despite the fundamental difference between these insults, peripheral neuropathy develops as a combination of just six primary mechanisms: altered metabolism, covalent modification, altered organelle function and reactive oxygen species formation, altered intracellular and inflammatory signaling, slowed axonal transport, and altered ion channel dynamics and expression. All of these pathways converge to lead to axon dysfunction and symptoms of neuropathy. The detailed mechanisms of axon degeneration itself have begun to be elucidated with studies of animal models with altered degeneration kinetics, including the slowed Wallerian degeneration (Wlds) and Sarmknockout animal models. These studies have shown axonal degeneration to occur througha programmed pathway of injury signaling and cytoskeletal degradation. Insights into the common disease insults that converge on the axonal degeneration pathway promise to facilitate the development of therapeutics that may be effective against other mechanisms of neurodegeneration. PMID:25617478

  10. ESCRT-II controls retinal axon growth by regulating DCC receptor levels and local protein synthesis.

    PubMed

    Konopacki, Filip A; Wong, Hovy Ho-Wai; Dwivedy, Asha; Bellon, Anaïs; Blower, Michael D; Holt, Christine E

    2016-04-01

    Endocytosis and local protein synthesis (LPS) act coordinately to mediate the chemotropic responses of axons, but the link between these two processes is poorly understood. The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) is a key regulator of cargo sorting in the endocytic pathway, and here we have investigated the role of ESCRT-II, a critical ESCRT component, in Xenopus retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons. We show that ESCRT-II is present in RGC axonal growth cones (GCs) where it co-localizes with endocytic vesicle GTPases and, unexpectedly, with the Netrin-1 receptor, deleted in colorectal cancer (DCC). ESCRT-II knockdown (KD) decreases endocytosis and, strikingly, reduces DCC in GCs and leads to axon growth and guidance defects. ESCRT-II-depleted axons fail to turn in response to a Netrin-1 gradient in vitro and many axons fail to exit the eye in vivo These defects, similar to Netrin-1/DCC loss-of-function phenotypes, can be rescued in whole (in vitro) or in part (in vivo) by expressing DCC. In addition, ESCRT-II KD impairs LPS in GCs and live imaging reveals that ESCRT-II transports mRNAs in axons. Collectively, our results show that the ESCRT-II-mediated endocytic pathway regulates both DCC and LPS in the axonal compartment and suggest that ESCRT-II aids gradient sensing in GCs by coupling endocytosis to LPS.

  11. Morphological and molecular features of the mammalian olfactory sensory neuron axons: What makes these axons so special?

    PubMed

    Nedelec, Stéphane; Dubacq, Caroline; Trembleau, Alain

    2005-03-01

    The main organization and gross morphology of the mammalian olfactory primary pathway, from the olfactory epithelium to the olfactory bulb, has been initially characterized using classical anatomical and ultrastructural approaches. During the last fifteen years, essentially thanks to the cloning of the odorant receptor genes, and to the characterization of a number of molecules expressed by the olfactory sensory neuron axons and their environment, significant new insights have been gained into the understanding of the development and adult functioning of this system. In the course of these genetic, biochemical and neuroanatomical studies, however, several molecular and structural features were uncovered that appear somehow to be unique to these axons. For example, these axons express odorant receptors in their terminal segment, and transport several mRNA species and at least two transcription factors. In the present paper, we review these unusual structural and molecular features and speculate about their possible functions in the development and maintenance of the olfactory system.

  12. Action-potential modulation during axonal conduction.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Takuya; Matsuki, Norio; Ikegaya, Yuji

    2011-02-04

    Once initiated near the soma, an action potential (AP) is thought to propagate autoregeneratively and distribute uniformly over axonal arbors. We challenge this classic view by showing that APs are subject to waveform modulation while they travel down axons. Using fluorescent patch-clamp pipettes, we recorded APs from axon branches of hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons ex vivo. The waveforms of axonal APs increased in width in response to the local application of glutamate and an adenosine A(1) receptor antagonist to the axon shafts, but not to other unrelated axon branches. Uncaging of calcium in periaxonal astrocytes caused AP broadening through ionotropic glutamate receptor activation. The broadened APs triggered larger calcium elevations in presynaptic boutons and facilitated synaptic transmission to postsynaptic neurons. This local AP modification may enable axonal computation through the geometry of axon wiring.

  13. Slow axoplasmic transport under scrutiny.

    PubMed

    Court, Felipe A; Alvarez, Jaime

    2011-01-01

    The origin of axoplasmic proteins is central for the biology of axons. For over fifty years axons have been considered unable to synthesize proteins and that cell bodies supply them with proteins by a slow transport mechanism. To allow for prolonged transport times, proteins were assumed to be stable, i.e., not degraded in axons. These are now textbook notions that configure the slow transport model (STM). The aim of this article is to cast doubts on the validity of STM, as a step toward gaining more understanding about the supply of axoplasmic proteins. First, the stability of axonal proteins claimed by STM has been disproved by experimental evidence. Moreover, the evidence for protein synthesis in axons indicates that the repertoire is extensive and the amount sizeable, which disproves the notion that axons are unable to synthesize proteins and that cell bodies supply most axonal proteins. In turn, axoplasmic protein synthesis gives rise to the metabolic model (MM). We point out a few inconsistencies in STM that MM redresses. Although both models address the supply of proteins to axons, so far they have had no crosstalk. Since proteins underlie every conceivable cellular function, it is necessary to re-evaluate in-depth the origin of axonal proteins. We hope this will shape a novel understanding of the biology of axons, with impact on development and maintenance of axons, nerve repair, axonopathies and plasticity, to mention a few fields.

  14. Limited availability of ZBP1 restricts axonal mRNA localization and nerve regeneration capacity.

    PubMed

    Donnelly, Christopher J; Willis, Dianna E; Xu, Mei; Tep, Chhavy; Jiang, Chunsu; Yoo, Soonmoon; Schanen, N Carolyn; Kirn-Safran, Catherine B; van Minnen, Jan; English, Arthur; Yoon, Sung Ok; Bassell, Gary J; Twiss, Jeffery L

    2011-09-30

    Subcellular localization of mRNAs is regulated by RNA-protein interactions. Here, we show that introduction of a reporter mRNA with the 3'UTR of β-actin mRNA competes with endogenous mRNAs for binding to ZBP1 in adult sensory neurons. ZBP1 is needed for axonal localization of β-actin mRNA, and introducing GFP with the 3'UTR of β-actin mRNA depletes axons of endogenous β-actin and GAP-43 mRNAs and attenuates both in vitro and in vivo regrowth of severed axons. Consistent with limited levels of ZBP1 protein in adult neurons, mice heterozygous for the ZBP1 gene are haploinsufficient for axonal transport of β-actin and GAP-43 mRNAs and for regeneration of peripheral nerve. Exogenous ZBP1 can rescue the RNA transport deficits, but the axonal growth deficit is only rescued if the transported mRNAs are locally translated. These data support a direct role for ZBP1 in transport and translation of mRNA cargos in axonal regeneration in vitro and in vivo.

  15. Progress of Research on Diffuse Axonal Injury after Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Junwei; Zhang, Kai

    2016-01-01

    The current work reviews the concept, pathological mechanism, and process of diagnosing of DAI. The pathological mechanism underlying DAI is complicated, including axonal breakage caused by axonal retraction balls, discontinued protein transport along the axonal axis, calcium influx, and calpain-mediated hydrolysis of structural protein, degradation of axonal cytoskeleton network, the changes of transport proteins such as amyloid precursor protein, and changes of glia cells. Based on the above pathological mechanism, the diagnosis of DAI is usually made using methods such as CT, traditional and new MRI, biochemical markers, and neuropsychological assessment. This review provides a basis in literature for further investigation and discusses the pathological mechanism. It may also facilitate improvement of the accuracy of diagnosis for DAI, which may come to play a critical role in breaking through the bottleneck of the clinical treatment of DAI and improving the survival and quality of life of patients through clear understanding of pathological mechanisms and accurate diagnosis. PMID:28078144

  16. Notch Signaling Inhibits Axon Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Bejjani, Rachid El; Hammarlund, Marc

    2013-01-01

    Summary Many neurons have limited capacity to regenerate their axons after injury. Neurons in the mammalian CNS do not regenerate, and even neurons in the PNS often fail to regenerate to their former targets. This failure is likely due in part to pathways that actively restrict regeneration; however, only a few factors that limit regeneration are known. Here, using single-neuron analysis of regeneration in vivo, we show that Notch/lin-12 signaling inhibits the regeneration of mature C. elegans neurons. Notch signaling suppresses regeneration by acting autonomously in the injured cell to prevent growth cone formation. The metalloprotease and gamma-secretase cleavage events that lead to Notch activation during development are also required for its activity in regeneration. Furthermore, blocking Notch activation immediately after injury improves regeneration. Our results define a novel, post-developmental role for the Notch pathway as a repressor of axon regeneration in vivo. PMID:22284182

  17. Intra-axonal translation of RhoA promotes axon growth inhibition by CSPG.

    PubMed

    Walker, Breset A; Ji, Sheng-Jian; Jaffrey, Samie R

    2012-10-10

    Chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs) are a major component of the glial scar that contributes to the limited regeneration of the CNS after axonal injury. However, the intracellular mechanisms that mediate the effects of CSPGs are not fully understood. Here we show that axonal growth inhibition mediated by CSPGs requires intra-axonal protein synthesis. Application of CSPGs to postnatal rat dorsal root ganglia axons results in an increase in the axonal levels of phosphorylated 4E-BP1, a marker of increased protein translation. Axons grown in media containing CSPGs exhibit markedly reduced growth rates, which can be restored by the selective application of protein synthesis inhibitors to distal axons. We show that these axons contain transcripts encoding RhoA, a regulator of the cytoskeleton that is commonly used by the signaling pathways activated by many inhibitors of axon growth. We also show that selective application of CSPGs to axons results in increased intra-axonal synthesis of RhoA and that depletion of RhoA transcripts from axons results in enhanced growth of axons in the presence of CSPGs. These data identify local translation as an effector pathway of CSPGs and demonstrate that local translation of RhoA contributes to the axon growth inhibitory effect of CSPGs.

  18. A Stochastic Multiscale Model That Explains the Segregation of Axonal Microtubules and Neurofilaments in Neurological Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Chuan; Shtylla, Blerta; Brown, Anthony

    2015-01-01

    The organization of the axonal cytoskeleton is a key determinant of the normal function of an axon, which is a long thin projection of a neuron. Under normal conditions two axonal cytoskeletal polymers, microtubules and neurofilaments, align longitudinally in axons and are interspersed in axonal cross-sections. However, in many neurotoxic and neurodegenerative disorders, microtubules and neurofilaments segregate apart from each other, with microtubules and membranous organelles clustered centrally and neurofilaments displaced to the periphery. This striking segregation precedes the abnormal and excessive neurofilament accumulation in these diseases, which in turn leads to focal axonal swellings. While neurofilament accumulation suggests an impairment of neurofilament transport along axons, the underlying mechanism of their segregation from microtubules remains poorly understood for over 30 years. To address this question, we developed a stochastic multiscale model for the cross-sectional distribution of microtubules and neurofilaments in axons. The model describes microtubules, neurofilaments and organelles as interacting particles in a 2D cross-section, and is built upon molecular processes that occur on a time scale of seconds or shorter. It incorporates the longitudinal transport of neurofilaments and organelles through this domain by allowing stochastic arrival and departure of these cargoes, and integrates the dynamic interactions of these cargoes with microtubules mediated by molecular motors. Simulations of the model demonstrate that organelles can pull nearby microtubules together, and in the absence of neurofilament transport, this mechanism gradually segregates microtubules from neurofilaments on a time scale of hours, similar to that observed in toxic neuropathies. This suggests that the microtubule-neurofilament segregation can be a consequence of the selective impairment of neurofilament transport. The model generates the experimentally testable

  19. Association of actin filaments with axonal microtubule tracts.

    PubMed

    Bearer, E L; Reese, T S

    1999-02-01

    Axoplasmic organelles move on actin as well as microtubules in vitro and axons contain a large amount of actin, but little is known about the organization and distribution of actin filaments within the axon. Here we undertake to define the relationship of the microtubule bundles typically found in axons to actin filaments by applying three microscopic techniques: laser-scanning confocal microscopy of immuno-labeled squid axoplasm; electronmicroscopy of conventionally prepared thin sections; and electronmicroscopy of touch preparations-a thin layer of axoplasm transferred to a specimen grid and negatively stained. Light microscopy shows that longitudinal actin filaments are abundant and usually coincide with longitudinal microtubule bundles. Electron microscopy shows that microfilaments are interwoven with the longitudinal bundles of microtubules. These bundles maintain their integrity when neurofilaments are extracted. Some, though not all microfilaments decorate with the S1 fragment of myosin, and some also act as nucleation sites for polymerization of exogenous actin, and hence are definitively identified as actin filaments. These actin filaments range in minimum length from 0.5 to 1.5 microm with some at least as long as 3.5 microm. We conclude that the microtubule-based tracks for fast organelle transport also include actin filaments. These actin filaments are sufficiently long and abundant to be ancillary or supportive of fast transport along microtubules within bundles, or to extend transport outside of the bundle. These actin filaments could also be essential for maintaining the structural integrity of the microtubule bundles.

  20. CHP1-mediated NHE1 biosynthetic maturation is required for Purkinje cell axon homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ye; Zaun, Hans C; Orlowski, John; Ackerman, Susan L

    2013-07-31

    Axon degeneration is a critical pathological feature of many neurodegenerative diseases. Misregulation of local axonal ion homeostasis has been recognized as an important yet understudied mechanism for axon degeneration. Here we report a chemically induced, recessive mouse mutation, vacillator (vac), which causes ataxia and concomitant axon degeneration of cerebellar Purkinje cells. By positional cloning, we identified vac as a point mutation in the calcineurin-like EF hand protein 1 (Chp1) gene that resulted in the production of mutant CHP1 isoforms with an amino acid substitution in a functional EF-hand domain or a truncation of this motif by aberrant splicing and significantly reduced protein levels. CHP1 has been previously shown to interact with the sodium hydrogen exchanger 1 (NHE1), a major regulator of intracellular pH. We demonstrated that CHP1 assists in the full glycosylation of NHE1 that is necessary for the membrane localization of this transporter and that truncated isoforms of CHP1 were defective in stimulating NHE1 biosynthetic maturation. Consistent with this, membrane localization of NHE1 at axon terminals was greatly reduced in Chp1-deficient Purkinje cells before axon degeneration. Furthermore, genetic ablation of Nhe1 also resulted in Purkinje cell axon degeneration, pinpointing the functional convergence of the two proteins. Our findings clearly demonstrate that the polarized presynaptic localization of NHE/CHP1 is an important feature of neuronal axons and that selective disruption of NHE1-mediated proton homeostasis in axons can lead to degeneration, suggesting that local regulation of pH is pivotal for axon survival.

  1. Sonic Hedgehog Guides Axons via Zipcode Binding Protein 1-Mediated Local Translation.

    PubMed

    Lepelletier, Léa; Langlois, Sébastien D; Kent, Christopher B; Welshhans, Kristy; Morin, Steves; Bassell, Gary J; Yam, Patricia T; Charron, Frédéric

    2017-02-15

    Sonic hedgehog (Shh) attracts spinal cord commissural axons toward the floorplate. How Shh elicits changes in the growth cone cytoskeleton that drive growth cone turning is unknown. We find that the turning of rat commissural axons up a Shh gradient requires protein synthesis. In particular, Shh stimulation increases β-actin protein at the growth cone even when the cell bodies have been removed. Therefore, Shh induces the local translation of β-actin at the growth cone. We hypothesized that this requires zipcode binding protein 1 (ZBP1), an mRNA-binding protein that transports β-actin mRNA and releases it for local translation upon phosphorylation. We found that Shh stimulation increases phospho-ZBP1 levels in the growth cone. Disruption of ZBP1 phosphorylation in vitro abolished the turning of commissural axons toward a Shh gradient. Disruption of ZBP1 function in vivo in mouse and chick resulted in commissural axon guidance errors. Therefore, ZBP1 is required for Shh to guide commissural axons. This identifies ZBP1 as a new mediator of noncanonical Shh signaling in axon guidance.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Sonic hedgehog (Shh) guides axons via a noncanonical signaling pathway that is distinct from the canonical Hedgehog signaling pathway that specifies cell fate and morphogenesis. Axon guidance is driven by changes in the growth cone in response to gradients of guidance molecules. Little is known about the molecular mechanism of how Shh orchestrates changes in the growth cone cytoskeleton that are required for growth cone turning. Here, we show that the guidance of axons by Shh requires protein synthesis. Zipcode binding protein 1 (ZBP1) is an mRNA-binding protein that regulates the local translation of proteins, including actin, in the growth cone. We demonstrate that ZBP1 is required for Shh-mediated axon guidance, identifying a new member of the noncanonical Shh signaling pathway.

  2. Optic nerve axons and acquired alterations in the appearance of the optic disc.

    PubMed Central

    Wirtschafter, J D

    1983-01-01

    The pathophysiologic events in optic nerve axons have recently been recognized as crucial to an understanding of clinically significant acquired alterations in the ophthalmoscopic appearance of the optic disc. Stasis and related abnormalities of axonal transport appear to explain most aspects of optic nerve head swelling, including optic disc drusen and retinal cottonwool spots. Loss of axoplasm and axonal death can be invoked to interpret optic disc pallor, thinning and narrowing of rim tissue, changes in the size and outline of the optic cup, laminar dots, atrophy of the retinal nerve fiber layer, and acquired demyelination and myelination of the retinal nerve fiber layer. It is speculated that the axons may also play a role in the mechanical support of the lamina cribrosa in resisting the pressure gradient across the pars scleralis of the optic nerve head. Axons and their associated glial cells may be involved in those cases where "reversibility" of cupping of the optic disc has been reported. The structure, physiology, and experimental pathologic findings of the optic nerve head have been reviewed. Many aspects concerning the final anatomic appearance of the optic nerve head have been explained. However, many questions remain concerning the intermediate mechanisms by which increased intracranial pressure retards the various components of axonal transport in papilledema and by which increased IOP causes axonal loss in glaucoma. Investigation of the molecular biology of axonal constituents and their responses to abnormalities in their physical and chemical milieu could extend our understanding of the events that result from mechanical compression and local ischemia. Moreover, we have identified a need to further explore the role of axons in the pathophysiology of optic disc cupping. Images FIGURE 2 FIGURE 3 FIGURE 4 FIGURE 5 FIGURE 6 FIGURE 7 FIGURE 8 FIGURE 11 FIGURE 12 FIGURE 13 PMID:6203209

  3. Immunohistochemical localization of the D1 dopamine receptor in rat brain reveals its axonal transport, pre- and postsynaptic localization, and prevalence in the basal ganglia, limbic system, and thalamic reticular nucleus.

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Q; Zhou, D; Chase, K; Gusella, J F; Aronin, N; DiFiglia, M

    1992-01-01

    D1 dopamine receptor localization was examined by immunohistochemistry using a polyclonal anti-peptide antibody which (i) immunoprecipitated a protein fragment encoded by a D1 receptor cDNA and (ii) on Western blots of solubilized striatal and hippocampal membranes recognized two proteins of approximately 50 kDa and 75 kDa, corresponding to reported sizes of D1 receptor proteins. Immunoreactivity overlapped with dopamine-containing pathways, patterns of D1 receptor binding, and mRNA expression. Staining was concentrated in prefrontal, cingulate, parietal, piriform, entorhinal, and hippocampal cortical areas and subcortically in the basal ganglia, amygdala, septal area, substantia inominata, thalamus, hypothalamus, and neurohypophysis. Prominent labeling was seen in the thalamic reticular nucleus, a region known to integrate ascending basal forebrain inputs with thalamocortical and corticothalamic pathways and in fiber bundles interconnecting limbic areas. In striatal neuropil, staining appeared in spines (heads and necks), at postsynaptic sites in dendrites, and in axon terminals; in the pars reticulata of the substantia nigra, labeling was prevalent in myelinated and unmyelinated axons and dendrites. These data provide direct evidence for the regional and subcellular distribution of D1 receptor protein in the brain and for its pre- and postsynaptic localization in the basal ganglia. The prominent immunoreactivity seen in the limbic system and thalamic reticular nucleus supports an important role for this receptor subtype in mediating integrative processes involved with learning, memory, and cognition. Images PMID:1281547

  4. Fate of severed cortical projection axons.

    PubMed

    Fishman, P S; Mattu, A

    1993-01-01

    Corticospinal neurons show a primarily degenerative response to axotomy in adult mammals. The long remaining proximal axon with its extensive synaptic contacts may contribute to the lack of initial regenerative response in this cell type. We examined a related group of cortical axons after lesions in the subcortical white matter close to their cell bodies of origin. With cholera B chain conjugated to horseradish peroxidase (CTB-HRP), transcallosal axons projecting into areas of a lesion were labeled. Animals surviving between 2 days and 4 months were examined with both light microscopic and ultrastructural techniques. During the first several days after injury, many of the axon terminals projecting into the lesion site had the appearance of axonal sprouts, although the majority of endings had the appearance of degenerating terminal swellings. By 2 weeks after injury some axonal sprouts had extended a short distance along the margins of the lesions, into overlying cortex. Four weeks after injury there is a reduction in the number of axons extending toward the lesion. This loss of axons appeared progressive and resulted in not only a loss of labeled axons, but also eventually in atrophy of the subcortical white matter near the lesion. In comparison to corticospinal axon lesions in the spinal cord or medullary pyramids, there is more extensive axonal sprouting and elongation after subcortical lesions. Degenerative morphological features still predominate after subcortical lesions and no successful trans-lesion axonal regeneration occurs. Axonal retraction and loss are both accelerated and more extensive after proximal subcortical axotomy than after corticospinal tract lesions.

  5. Where does axon guidance lead us?

    PubMed Central

    Stoeckli, Esther

    2017-01-01

    During neural circuit formation, axons need to navigate to their target cells in a complex, constantly changing environment. Although we most likely have identified most axon guidance cues and their receptors, we still cannot explain the molecular background of pathfinding for any subpopulation of axons. We lack mechanistic insight into the regulation of interactions between guidance receptors and their ligands. Recent developments in the field of axon guidance suggest that the regulation of surface expression of guidance receptors comprises transcriptional, translational, and post-translational mechanisms, such as trafficking of vesicles with specific cargos, protein-protein interactions, and specific proteolysis of guidance receptors. Not only axon guidance molecules but also the regulatory mechanisms that control their spatial and temporal expression are involved in synaptogenesis and synaptic plasticity. Therefore, it is not surprising that genes associated with axon guidance are frequently found in genetic and genomic studies of neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:28163913

  6. Calpain-mediated cleavage of collapsin response mediator protein-2 drives acute axonal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jian-Nan; Michel, Uwe; Lenz, Christof; Friedel, Caroline C.; Köster, Sarah; d’Hedouville, Zara; Tönges, Lars; Urlaub, Henning; Bähr, Mathias; Lingor, Paul; Koch, Jan C.

    2016-01-01

    Axonal degeneration is a key initiating event in many neurological diseases. Focal lesions to axons result in a rapid disintegration of the perilesional axon by acute axonal degeneration (AAD) within several hours. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms of AAD are only incompletely understood. Here, we studied AAD in vivo through live-imaging of the rat optic nerve and in vitro in primary rat cortical neurons in microfluidic chambers. We found that calpain is activated early during AAD of the optic nerve and that calpain inhibition completely inhibits axonal fragmentation on the proximal side of the crush while it attenuates AAD on the distal side. A screening of calpain targets revealed that collapsin response mediator protein-2 (CRMP2) is a main downstream target of calpain activation in AAD. CRMP2-overexpression delayed bulb formation and rescued impairment of axonal mitochondrial transport after axotomy in vitro. In vivo, CRMP2-overexpression effectively protected the proximal axon from fragmentation within 6 hours after crush. Finally, a proteomic analysis of the optic nerve was performed at 6 hours after crush, which identified further proteins regulated during AAD, including several interactors of CRMP2. These findings reveal CRMP2 as an important mediator of AAD and define it as a putative therapeutic target. PMID:27845394

  7. Retinal Afferent Ingrowth to Neocortical Transplants in the Adult Rat Superior Colliculus is due to the Regeneration of Damaged Axons

    PubMed Central

    Ross, D. T.; Das, G. D.

    1994-01-01

    Retinal afferent ingrowth to embryonic neural transplants in the adult rat superior colliculus may represent either sprouting of intact axons or the regeneration of transected axons. If ingrowth represents regeneration of damaged retinofugai axons, then lesions that axotomize more retinofugal axons at the transplantation site should induce greater retinal afferent ingrowth. Alternately, if ingrowth represents terminal or collateral sprouting of intact retinofugal axons at or near the transplant/host optic layer interface, then the magnitude of retinal afferent ingrowth should be directly related to the total area of this interface. To test between these two hypotheses surgical knife wounds were made either parallel (in the sagittal plane) or perpendicular (in the transverse plane) to the course of axons in the stratum opticum, embryonic neocortical tissue was transplanted at the coordinates of these tectal slits, and retinal afferent ingrowth visualized 1-90 days after surgery using anterogradely transported HRP. A zone of traumatic reaction (ztr) in the optic layers was seen in every case, characterized by hypertrophied axons and swollen terminal clubs at 1 day. Between 30 and 90 days the damaged retinofugal axons in the zone formed dense fascicles and neuroma-like tangles. Retinal afferent ingrowth occurred only across transplant interface regions with the ztr. The magnitude of ingrowth was directly related to the area of the ztr interface and not the total optic layer interface area. Retinal afferent ingrowth appears to reflect the intrinsic regenerative capacity of adult mammalian retinal ganglion cells and not sprouting of undamaged axons. PMID:7703292

  8. Inner membrane fusion mediates spatial distribution of axonal mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Yiyi; Lee, Hao-Chih; Chen, Kuan-Chieh; Suhan, Joseph; Qiu, Minhua; Ba, Qinle; Yang, Ge

    2016-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, mitochondria form a dynamic interconnected network to respond to changing needs at different subcellular locations. A fundamental yet unanswered question regarding this network is whether, and if so how, local fusion and fission of individual mitochondria affect their global distribution. To address this question, we developed high-resolution computational image analysis techniques to examine the relations between mitochondrial fusion/fission and spatial distribution within the axon of Drosophila larval neurons. We found that stationary and moving mitochondria underwent fusion and fission regularly but followed different spatial distribution patterns and exhibited different morphology. Disruption of inner membrane fusion by knockdown of dOpa1, Drosophila Optic Atrophy 1, not only increased the spatial density of stationary and moving mitochondria but also changed their spatial distributions and morphology differentially. Knockdown of dOpa1 also impaired axonal transport of mitochondria. But the changed spatial distributions of mitochondria resulted primarily from disruption of inner membrane fusion because knockdown of Milton, a mitochondrial kinesin-1 adapter, caused similar transport velocity impairment but different spatial distributions. Together, our data reveals that stationary mitochondria within the axon interconnect with moving mitochondria through fusion and fission and that local inner membrane fusion between individual mitochondria mediates their global distribution. PMID:26742817

  9. Inner membrane fusion mediates spatial distribution of axonal mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yiyi; Lee, Hao-Chih; Chen, Kuan-Chieh; Suhan, Joseph; Qiu, Minhua; Ba, Qinle; Yang, Ge

    2016-01-08

    In eukaryotic cells, mitochondria form a dynamic interconnected network to respond to changing needs at different subcellular locations. A fundamental yet unanswered question regarding this network is whether, and if so how, local fusion and fission of individual mitochondria affect their global distribution. To address this question, we developed high-resolution computational image analysis techniques to examine the relations between mitochondrial fusion/fission and spatial distribution within the axon of Drosophila larval neurons. We found that stationary and moving mitochondria underwent fusion and fission regularly but followed different spatial distribution patterns and exhibited different morphology. Disruption of inner membrane fusion by knockdown of dOpa1, Drosophila Optic Atrophy 1, not only increased the spatial density of stationary and moving mitochondria but also changed their spatial distributions and morphology differentially. Knockdown of dOpa1 also impaired axonal transport of mitochondria. But the changed spatial distributions of mitochondria resulted primarily from disruption of inner membrane fusion because knockdown of Milton, a mitochondrial kinesin-1 adapter, caused similar transport velocity impairment but different spatial distributions. Together, our data reveals that stationary mitochondria within the axon interconnect with moving mitochondria through fusion and fission and that local inner membrane fusion between individual mitochondria mediates their global distribution.

  10. Inner membrane fusion mediates spatial distribution of axonal mitochondria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Yiyi; Lee, Hao-Chih; Chen, Kuan-Chieh; Suhan, Joseph; Qiu, Minhua; Ba, Qinle; Yang, Ge

    2016-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, mitochondria form a dynamic interconnected network to respond to changing needs at different subcellular locations. A fundamental yet unanswered question regarding this network is whether, and if so how, local fusion and fission of individual mitochondria affect their global distribution. To address this question, we developed high-resolution computational image analysis techniques to examine the relations between mitochondrial fusion/fission and spatial distribution within the axon of Drosophila larval neurons. We found that stationary and moving mitochondria underwent fusion and fission regularly but followed different spatial distribution patterns and exhibited different morphology. Disruption of inner membrane fusion by knockdown of dOpa1, Drosophila Optic Atrophy 1, not only increased the spatial density of stationary and moving mitochondria but also changed their spatial distributions and morphology differentially. Knockdown of dOpa1 also impaired axonal transport of mitochondria. But the changed spatial distributions of mitochondria resulted primarily from disruption of inner membrane fusion because knockdown of Milton, a mitochondrial kinesin-1 adapter, caused similar transport velocity impairment but different spatial distributions. Together, our data reveals that stationary mitochondria within the axon interconnect with moving mitochondria through fusion and fission and that local inner membrane fusion between individual mitochondria mediates their global distribution.

  11. AxonSeg: Open Source Software for Axon and Myelin Segmentation and Morphometric Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Zaimi, Aldo; Duval, Tanguy; Gasecka, Alicja; Côté, Daniel; Stikov, Nikola; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2016-01-01

    Segmenting axon and myelin from microscopic images is relevant for studying the peripheral and central nervous system and for validating new MRI techniques that aim at quantifying tissue microstructure. While several software packages have been proposed, their interface is sometimes limited and/or they are designed to work with a specific modality (e.g., scanning electron microscopy (SEM) only). Here we introduce AxonSeg, which allows to perform automatic axon and myelin segmentation on histology images, and to extract relevant morphometric information, such as axon diameter distribution, axon density and the myelin g-ratio. AxonSeg includes a simple and intuitive MATLAB-based graphical user interface (GUI) and can easily be adapted to a variety of imaging modalities. The main steps of AxonSeg consist of: (i) image pre-processing; (ii) pre-segmentation of axons over a cropped image and discriminant analysis (DA) to select the best parameters based on axon shape and intensity information; (iii) automatic axon and myelin segmentation over the full image; and (iv) atlas-based statistics to extract morphometric information. Segmentation results from standard optical microscopy (OM), SEM and coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) microscopy are presented, along with validation against manual segmentations. Being fully-automatic after a quick manual intervention on a cropped image, we believe AxonSeg will be useful to researchers interested in large throughput histology. AxonSeg is open source and freely available at: https://github.com/neuropoly/axonseg. PMID:27594833

  12. Calsyntenin-1 Regulates Axon Branching and Endosomal Trafficking during Sensory Neuron Development In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Ponomareva, Olga Y.; Holmen, Ian C.; Sperry, Aiden J.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.

    2014-01-01

    Precise regulation of axon branching is crucial for neuronal circuit formation, yet the mechanisms that control branch formation are not well understood. Moreover, the highly complex morphology of neurons makes them critically dependent on protein/membrane trafficking and transport systems, although the functions for membrane trafficking in neuronal morphogenesis are largely undefined. Here we identify a kinesin adaptor, Calsyntenin-1 (Clstn-1), as an essential regulator of axon branching and neuronal compartmentalization in vivo. We use morpholino knockdown and a Clstn-1 mutant to show that Clstn-1 is required for formation of peripheral but not central sensory axons, and for peripheral axon branching in zebrafish. We used live imaging of endosomal trafficking in vivo to show that Clstn-1 regulates transport of Rab5-containing endosomes from the cell body to specific locations of developing axons. Our results suggest a model in which Clstn-1 patterns separate axonal compartments and define their ability to branch by directing trafficking of specific endosomes. PMID:25009257

  13. Regulating Axonal Responses to Injury: The Intersection between Signaling Pathways Involved in Axon Myelination and The Inhibition of Axon Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Sudheendra N. R.; Pearse, Damien D.

    2016-01-01

    Following spinal cord injury (SCI), a multitude of intrinsic and extrinsic factors adversely affect the gene programs that govern the expression of regeneration-associated genes (RAGs) and the production of a diversity of extracellular matrix molecules (ECM). Insufficient RAG expression in the injured neuron and the presence of inhibitory ECM at the lesion, leads to structural alterations in the axon that perturb the growth machinery, or form an extraneous barrier to axonal regeneration, respectively. Here, the role of myelin, both intact and debris, in antagonizing axon regeneration has been the focus of numerous investigations. These studies have employed antagonizing antibodies and knockout animals to examine how the growth cone of the re-growing axon responds to the presence of myelin and myelin-associated inhibitors (MAIs) within the lesion environment and caudal spinal cord. However, less attention has been placed on how the myelination of the axon after SCI, whether by endogenous glia or exogenously implanted glia, may alter axon regeneration. Here, we examine the intersection between intracellular signaling pathways in neurons and glia that are involved in axon myelination and axon growth, to provide greater insight into how interrogating this complex network of molecular interactions may lead to new therapeutics targeting SCI. PMID:27375427

  14. Axonal interferon responses and alphaherpesvirus neuroinvasion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Ren

    Infection by alphaherpesviruses, including herpes simplex virus (HSV) and pseudorabies virus (PRV), typically begins at a peripheral epithelial surface and continues into the peripheral nervous system (PNS) that innervates this tissue. Inflammatory responses are induced at the infected peripheral site prior to viral invasion of the PNS. PNS neurons are highly polarized cells with long axonal processes that connect to distant targets. When the peripheral tissue is first infected, only the innervating axons are exposed to this inflammatory milieu, which include type I interferon (e.g. IFNbeta) and type II interferon (i.e. IFNgamma). IFNbeta can be produced by all types of cells, while IFNgamma is secreted by some specific types of immune cells. And both types of IFN induce antiviral responses in surrounding cells that express the IFN receptors. The fundamental question is how do PNS neurons respond to the inflammatory milieu experienced only by their axons. Axons must act as potential front-line barriers to prevent PNS infection and damage. Using compartmented cultures that physically separate neuron axons from cell bodies, I found that pretreating isolated axons with IFNbeta or IFNgamma significantly diminished the number of HSV-1 and PRV particles moving from axons to the cell bodies in an IFN receptor-dependent manner. Furthermore, I found the responses in axons are activated differentially by the two types of IFNs. The response to IFNbeta is a rapid, axon-only response, while the response to IFNgamma involves long distance signaling to the PNS cell body. For example, exposing axons to IFNbeta induced STAT1 phosphorylation (p-STAT1) only in axons, while exposure of axons to IFNgamma induced p-STAT1 accumulation in distant cell body nuclei. Blocking transcription in cell bodies eliminated IFNgamma-, but not IFNbeta-mediated antiviral effects. Proteomic analysis of IFNbeta- or IFNgamma-treated axons identified several differentially regulated proteins. Therefore

  15. Neuronal activity biases axon selection for myelination in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Hines, Jacob H.; Ravanelli, Andrew M.; Schwindt, Rani; Scott, Ethan K.; Appel, Bruce

    2015-01-01

    An essential feature of vertebrate neural development is ensheathment of axons with myelin, an insulating membrane formed by oligodendrocytes. Not all axons are myelinated, but mechanisms directing myelination of specific axons are unknown. Using zebrafish we show that activity-dependent secretion stabilizes myelin sheath formation on select axons. When VAMP2-dependent exocytosis is silenced in single axons, oligodendrocytes preferentially ensheath neighboring axons. Nascent sheaths formed on silenced axons are shorter in length, but when activity of neighboring axons is also suppressed, inhibition of sheath growth is relieved. Using in vivo time-lapse microscopy, we show that only 25% of oligodendrocyte processes that initiate axon wrapping are stabilized during normal development, and that initiation does not require activity. Instead, oligodendrocyte processes wrapping silenced axons are retracted more frequently. We propose that axon selection for myelination results from excessive and indiscriminate initiation of wrapping followed by refinement that is biased by activity-dependent secretion from axons. PMID:25849987

  16. Cable energy function of cortical axons

    PubMed Central

    Ju, Huiwen; Hines, Michael L.; Yu, Yuguo

    2016-01-01

    Accurate estimation of action potential (AP)-related metabolic cost is essential for understanding energetic constraints on brain connections and signaling processes. Most previous energy estimates of the AP were obtained using the Na+-counting method, which seriously limits accurate assessment of metabolic cost of ionic currents that underlie AP conduction along the axon. Here, we first derive a full cable energy function for cortical axons based on classic Hodgkin-Huxley (HH) neuronal equations and then apply the cable energy function to precisely estimate the energy consumption of AP conduction along axons with different geometric shapes. Our analytical approach predicts an inhomogeneous distribution of metabolic cost along an axon with either uniformly or nonuniformly distributed ion channels. The results show that the Na+-counting method severely underestimates energy cost in the cable model by 20–70%. AP propagation along axons that differ in length may require over 15% more energy per unit of axon area than that required by a point model. However, actual energy cost can vary greatly depending on axonal branching complexity, ion channel density distributions, and AP conduction states. We also infer that the metabolic rate (i.e. energy consumption rate) of cortical axonal branches as a function of spatial volume exhibits a 3/4 power law relationship. PMID:27439954

  17. Molecular mechanisms of optic axon guidance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inatani, Masaru

    2005-12-01

    Axon guidance is one of the critical processes during vertebrate central nervous system (CNS) development. The optic nerve, which contains the axons of retinal ganglion cells, has been used as a powerful model to elucidate some of the mechanisms underlying axon guidance because it is easily manipulated experimentally, and its function is well understood. Recent molecular biology studies have revealed that numerous guidance molecules control the development of the visual pathway. This review introduces the molecular mechanisms involved in each critical step during optic axon guidance. Axonal projections to the optic disc are thought to depend on adhesion molecules and inhibitory extracellular matrices such as chondroitin sulfate. The formation of the head of the optic nerve and the optic chiasm require ligand-receptor interactions between netrin-1 and the deleted in colorectal cancer receptor, and Slit proteins and Robo receptors, respectively. The gradient distributions of ephrin ligands and Eph receptors are essential for correct ipsilateral projections at the optic chiasm and the topographic mapping of axons in the superior colliculus/optic tectum. The precise gradient is regulated by transcription factors determining the retinal dorso-ventral and nasal-temporal polarities. Moreover, the axon guidance activities by Slit and semaphorin 5A require the existence of heparan sulfate, which binds to numerous guidance molecules. Recent discoveries about the molecular mechanisms underlying optic nerve guidance will facilitate progress in CNS developmental biology and axon-regeneration therapy.

  18. Ascending midbrain dopaminergic axons require descending GAD65 axon fascicles for normal pathfinding

    PubMed Central

    García-Peña, Claudia M.; Kim, Minkyung; Frade-Pérez, Daniela; Ávila-González, Daniela; Téllez, Elisa; Mastick, Grant S.; Tamariz, Elisa; Varela-Echavarría, Alfredo

    2014-01-01

    The Nigrostriatal pathway (NSP) is formed by dopaminergic axons that project from the ventral midbrain to the dorsolateral striatum as part of the medial forebrain bundle. Previous studies have implicated chemotropic proteins in the formation of the NSP during development but little is known of the role of substrate-anchored signals in this process. We observed in mouse and rat embryos that midbrain dopaminergic axons ascend in close apposition to descending GAD65-positive axon bundles throughout their trajectory to the striatum. To test whether such interaction is important for dopaminergic axon pathfinding, we analyzed transgenic mouse embryos in which the GAD65 axon bundle was reduced by the conditional expression of the diphtheria toxin. In these embryos we observed dopaminergic misprojection into the hypothalamic region and abnormal projection in the striatum. In addition, analysis of Robo1/2 and Slit1/2 knockout embryos revealed that the previously described dopaminergic misprojection in these embryos is accompanied by severe alterations in the GAD65 axon scaffold. Additional studies with cultured dopaminergic neurons and whole embryos suggest that NCAM and Robo proteins are involved in the interaction of GAD65 and dopaminergic axons. These results indicate that the fasciculation between descending GAD65 axon bundles and ascending dopaminergic axons is required for the stereotypical NSP formation during brain development and that known guidance cues may determine this projection indirectly by instructing the pathfinding of the axons that are part of the GAD65 axon scaffold. PMID:24926237

  19. A macroscopic model of traffic jams in axons.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, A V; Avramenko, A A

    2009-04-01

    The purpose of this paper is to develop a minimal macroscopic model capable of explaining the formation of traffic jams in fast axonal transport. The model accounts for the decrease of the number density of positively (and negatively) oriented microtubules near the location of the traffic jam due to formation of microtubule swirls; the model also accounts for the reduction of the effective velocity of organelle transport in the traffic jam region due to organelles falling off microtubule tracks more often in the swirl region. The model is based on molecular-motor-assisted transport equations and the hydrodynamic model of traffic jams in highway traffic. Parametric analyses of the model's predictions for various values of viscosity of the traffic flow, variance of the velocity distribution, diffusivity of microtubule-bound and free organelles, rate constants for binding to and detachment from microtubules, relaxation time, and average motor velocities of the retrograde and anterograde transport, are carried out.

  20. Mapping mean axon diameter and axonal volume fraction by MRI using temporal diffusion spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Xu, Junzhong; Li, Hua; Harkins, Kevin D; Jiang, Xiaoyu; Xie, Jingping; Kang, Hakmook; Does, Mark D; Gore, John C

    2014-12-01

    Mapping mean axon diameter and intra-axonal volume fraction may have significant clinical potential because nerve conduction velocity is directly dependent on axon diameter, and several neurodegenerative diseases affect axons of specific sizes and alter axon counts. Diffusion-weighted MRI methods based on the pulsed gradient spin echo (PGSE) sequence have been reported to be able to assess axon diameter and volume fraction non-invasively. However, due to the relatively long diffusion times used, e.g. >20ms, the sensitivity to small axons (diameter<2μm) is low, and the derived mean axon diameter has been reported to be overestimated. In the current study, oscillating gradient spin echo (OGSE) diffusion sequences with variable frequency gradients were used to assess rat spinal white matter tracts with relatively short effective diffusion times (1-5ms). In contrast to previous PGSE-based methods, the extra-axonal diffusion cannot be modeled as hindered (Gaussian) diffusion when short diffusion times are used. Appropriate frequency-dependent rates are therefore incorporated into our analysis and validated by histology-based computer simulation of water diffusion. OGSE data were analyzed to derive mean axon diameters and intra-axonal volume fractions of rat spinal white matter tracts (mean axon diameter of ~1.27-5.54μm). The estimated values were in good agreement with histology, including the small axon diameters (<2.5μm). This study establishes a framework for the quantification of nerve morphology using the OGSE method with high sensitivity to small axons.

  1. Mapping mean axon diameter and axonal volume fraction by MRI using temporal diffusion spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Junzhong; Li, Hua; Harkins, Kevin D.; Jiang, Xiaoyu; Xie, Jingping; Kang, Hakmook; Does, Mark D.; Gore, John C.

    2014-01-01

    Mapping mean axon diameter and intra-axonal volume fraction may have significant clinical potential because nerve conduction velocity is directly dependent on axon diameter, and several neurodegenerative diseases affect axons of specific sizes and alter axon counts. Diffusion-weighted MRI methods based on the pulsed gradient spin echo (PGSE) sequence have been reported to be able to assess axon diameter and volume fraction non-invasively. However, due to the relatively long diffusion times used, e.g. > 20 ms, the sensitivity to small axons (diameter < 2 µm) is low, and the derived mean axon diameter has been reported to be overestimated. In the current study, oscillating gradient spin echo (OGSE) diffusion sequences with variable frequency gradients were used to assess rat spinal white matter tracts with relatively short effective diffusion times (1 – 5 ms). In contrast to previous PGSE-based methods, the extra-axonal diffusion cannot be modeled as hindered (Gaussian) diffusion when short diffusion times are used. Appropriate frequency-dependent rates are therefore incorporated into our analysis and validated by histology-based computer simulation of water diffusion. OGSE data were analyzed to derive mean axon diameters and intra-axonal volume fractions of rat spinal white matter tracts (mean axon diameter ~ 1.27 – 5.54 µm). The estimated values were in good agreement with histology, including the small axon diameters (< 2.5 µm). This study establishes a framework for quantification of nerve morphology using the OGSE method with high sensitivity to small axons. PMID:25225002

  2. SNTF Immunostaining Reveals Previously Undetected Axonal Pathology in Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Victoria E.; Stewart, William; Weber, Maura T.; Cullen, D. Kacy; Siman, Robert; Smith, Douglas H.

    2016-01-01

    Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) is a common feature of severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and may also be a predominant pathology in mild TBI or “concussion”. The rapid deformation of white matter at the instant of trauma can lead to mechanical failure and calcium-dependent proteolysis of the axonal cytoskeleton in association with axonal transport interruption. Recently, a proteolytic fragment of alpha-II spectrin, “SNTF”, was detected in serum acutely following mild TBI in patients and was prognostic for poor clinical outcome. However, direct evidence that this fragment is a marker of DAI has yet to be demonstrated in either humans following TBI or in models of mild TBI. Here we used immunohistochemistry (IHC) to examine for SNTF in brain tissue following both severe and mild TBI. Human severe TBI cases (survival <7d; n=18) were compared to age-matched controls (n=16) from the Glasgow TBI archive. We also we examined brains from an established model of mild TBI at 6h, 48h and 72h post-injury versus shams. IHC specific for SNTF was compared to that of amyloid precursor protein (APP), the current standard for DAI diagnosis and other known markers of axonal pathology including non-phosphorylated neurofilament-H (SMI-32), neurofilament-68 (NF-68) and compacted neurofilament-medium (RMO-14) using double and triple immunofluorescent labelling. Supporting its use as a biomarker of DAI, SNTF immunoreactive axons were observed at all time-points following both human severe TBI and in the model of mild TBI. Interestingly, SNTF revealed a subpopulation of degenerating axons, undetected by the gold-standard marker of transport interruption, APP. While there was greater axonal co-localization between SNTF and APP after severe TBI in humans, a subset of SNTF positive axons displayed no APP accumulation. Notably, some co-localization was observed between SNTF and the less abundant neurofilament subtype markers. Other SNTF positive axons, however, did not co-localize with

  3. SNTF immunostaining reveals previously undetected axonal pathology in traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Victoria E; Stewart, William; Weber, Maura T; Cullen, D Kacy; Siman, Robert; Smith, Douglas H

    2016-01-01

    Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) is a common feature of severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) and may also be a predominant pathology in mild TBI or "concussion". The rapid deformation of white matter at the instant of trauma can lead to mechanical failure and calcium-dependent proteolysis of the axonal cytoskeleton in association with axonal transport interruption. Recently, a proteolytic fragment of alpha-II spectrin, "SNTF", was detected in serum acutely following mild TBI in patients and was prognostic for poor clinical outcome. However, direct evidence that this fragment is a marker of DAI has yet to be demonstrated in either humans following TBI or in models of mild TBI. Here, we used immunohistochemistry (IHC) to examine for SNTF in brain tissue following both severe and mild TBI. Human severe TBI cases (survival <7d; n = 18) were compared to age-matched controls (n = 16) from the Glasgow TBI archive. We also examined brains from an established model of mild TBI at 6, 48 and 72 h post-injury versus shams. IHC specific for SNTF was compared to that of amyloid precursor protein (APP), the current standard for DAI diagnosis, and other known markers of axonal pathology including non-phosphorylated neurofilament-H (SMI-32), neurofilament-68 (NF-68) and compacted neurofilament-medium (RMO-14) using double and triple immunofluorescent labeling. Supporting its use as a biomarker of DAI, SNTF immunoreactive axons were observed at all time points following both human severe TBI and in the model of mild TBI. Interestingly, SNTF revealed a subpopulation of degenerating axons, undetected by the gold-standard marker of transport interruption, APP. While there was greater axonal co-localization between SNTF and APP after severe TBI in humans, a subset of SNTF positive axons displayed no APP accumulation. Notably, some co-localization was observed between SNTF and the less abundant neurofilament subtype markers. Other SNTF positive axons, however, did not co-localize with any

  4. Characterization of axo-axonic synapses in the piriform cortex of Mus musculus.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xinjun; Sun, Qian-Quan

    2012-03-01

    Previous anatomical and physiological studies have established major glutamatergic and GABAergic neuronal subtypes within the piriform cortical circuits. However, quantitative information regarding axo-axonic inhibitory synapses mediated by chandelier cells across major cortical subdivisions of piriform cortex is lacking. Therefore, we examined the properties of these synapses across the entire piriform cortex. Our results show the following. 1) γ-Aminobutyric acid membrane transporter 1-positive varicosities, whose appearance resembles chandelier cartridges, are found around the initial segments of axons of glutamatergic cells across layers II and III. 2) Both the density of axo-axonic cartridges and the degree of γ-aminobutyric acid membrane transporter 1 innervation in each axo-axonic synapse are significantly higher in the piriform cortex than in the neocortex. 3) Glutamate decarboxylase 67, vesicular GABA transporter, and parvalbumin, but not calbindin, are colocalized with the presynaptic varicosities, whereas gephyrin, Na-K-2Cl cotransporter 1, and GABA(A) receptor α1 subunit, but not K-Cl cotransporter 2, are colocalized at the presumed postsynaptic sites. 4) The axo-axonic cartridges innervate the majority of excitatory neurons and are distributed more frequently in putative centrifugal cells and posterior piriform cortex. We further describe the morphology of chandelier cells by using parvalbumin-immunoreactivity and single-cell labeling. In summary, our results demonstrate that a small population of chandelier cells mediates abundant axo-axonic synapses across the entire piriform cortex. Because of the critical location of these inhibitory synapses in relation to action potential regulation, our results highlight a critical role of axo-axonic synapses in regulating information flow and olfactory-related oscillations within the piriform cortex in vivo.

  5. Efficient simulations of tubulin-driven axonal growth.

    PubMed

    Diehl, Stefan; Henningsson, Erik; Heyden, Anders

    2016-08-01

    This work concerns efficient and reliable numerical simulations of the dynamic behaviour of a moving-boundary model for tubulin-driven axonal growth. The model is nonlinear and consists of a coupled set of a partial differential equation (PDE) and two ordinary differential equations. The PDE is defined on a computational domain with a moving boundary, which is part of the solution. Numerical simulations based on standard explicit time-stepping methods are too time consuming due to the small time steps required for numerical stability. On the other hand standard implicit schemes are too complex due to the nonlinear equations that needs to be solved in each step. Instead, we propose to use the Peaceman-Rachford splitting scheme combined with temporal and spatial scalings of the model. Simulations based on this scheme have shown to be efficient, accurate, and reliable which makes it possible to evaluate the model, e.g. its dependency on biological and physical model parameters. These evaluations show among other things that the initial axon growth is very fast, that the active transport is the dominant reason over diffusion for the growth velocity, and that the polymerization rate in the growth cone does not affect the final axon length.

  6. TRANSPORT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Presentation outline: transport principles, effective solubility; gasoline composition; and field examples (plume diving).
    Presentation conclusions: MTBE transport follows from - phyiscal and chemical properties and hydrology. Field examples show: MTBE plumes > benzene plu...

  7. Astrocyte scar formation aids CNS axon regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Mark A.; Burda, Joshua E.; Ren, Yilong; Ao, Yan; O’Shea, Timothy M.; Kawaguchi, Riki; Coppola, Giovanni; Khakh, Baljit S.; Deming, Timothy J.; Sofroniew, Michael V.

    2017-01-01

    Summary Transected axons fail to regrow in the mature central nervous system (CNS). Astrocyte scars are widely regarded as causal in this failure. Here, using three genetically targeted loss-of-function manipulations in adult mice, we show that preventing astrocyte scar formation, attenuating scar-forming astrocytes, or deleting chronic astrocyte scars all failed to result in spontaneous regrowth of transected corticospinal, sensory or serotonergic axons through severe spinal cord injury (SCI) lesions. In striking contrast, sustained local delivery via hydrogel depots of required axon-specific growth factors not present in SCI lesions, plus growth-activating priming injuries, stimulated robust, laminin-dependent sensory axon regrowth past scar-forming astrocytes and inhibitory molecules in SCI lesions. Preventing astrocyte scar formation significantly reduced this stimulated axon regrowth. RNA sequencing revealed that astrocytes and non-astrocyte cells in SCI lesions express multiple axon-growth supporting molecules. Our findings show that contrary to prevailing dogma, astrocyte scar formation aids rather than prevents CNS axon regeneration. PMID:27027288

  8. Emerging brain morphologies from axonal elongation

    PubMed Central

    Holland, Maria A.; Miller, Kyle E.; Kuhl, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the characteristic morphology of our brain remains a challenging, yet important task in human evolution, developmental biology, and neurosciences. Mathematical modeling shapes our understanding of cortical folding and provides functional relations between cortical wavelength, thickness, and stiffness. Yet, current mathematical models are phenomenologically isotropic and typically predict non-physiological, periodic folding patterns. Here we establish a mechanistic model for cortical folding, in which macroscopic changes in white matter volume are a natural consequence of microscopic axonal growth. To calibrate our model, we consult axon elongation experiments in chick sensory neurons. We demonstrate that a single parameter, the axonal growth rate, explains a wide variety of in vitro conditions including immediate axonal thinning and gradual thickness restoration. We embed our axonal growth model into a continuum model for brain development using axonal orientation distributions motivated by diffusion spectrum imaging. Our simulations suggest that white matter anisotropy - as an emergent property from directional axonal growth - intrinsically induces symmetry breaking, and predicts more physiological, less regular morphologies with regionally varying gyral wavelengths and sulcal depths. Mechanistic modeling of brain development could establish valuable relationships between brain connectivity, brain anatomy, and brain function. PMID:25824370

  9. Decreased axonal density and altered expression profiles of axonal guidance genes underlying lead (Pb) neurodevelopmental toxicity at early embryonic stages in the zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jun; Peterson, Samuel M; Weber, Gregory J; Zhu, Xinqiang; Zheng, Wei; Freeman, Jennifer L

    2011-01-01

    Previous studies have reported that environmental lead (Pb) exposure can result in neurological alterations in children leading to reduced IQ, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and diminished reading and learning abilities. However, the specific alterations in neurodevelopmental morphology and the underlying genetic mechanisms of these alterations have not yet been thoroughly defined. To investigate alterations in neurologic morphology and test the hypothesis that developmental Pb neurotoxicity is partially mediated through alterations in neuronal growth and transport function of axons, the changes of specific axon tracts in the embryonic zebrafish brain were observed with anti-acetylated α-tubulin staining at several developmental time points through 36hours post fertilization (hpf). In addition, the role of a subset of axonogenesis-related genes including shha, epha4b, netrin1b, netrin2, and noiwas investigated with real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR). Pb treatment resulted in decreased axonal density at 18, 20, and 24hpf for specific axon tracts in the midbrain and forebrain. These observations corresponded to an observed down-regulation of shha and epha4b at 14 and 16hpf, respectively. The axonal density in Pb exposed individuals at later stages (30 and 36hpf) was not significantly different from controls. An overexpression of netrin2 at these two developmental stages suggests a novel role for this gene in regulating axonal density specific to Pb neurotoxicity. Although no significant differences in axonal density was observed in the two later developmental stages, further studies are needed to determine if the morphologic alterations observed at the earlier stages will have lasting functional impacts.

  10. The RNA-binding protein SFPQ orchestrates an RNA regulon to promote axon viability.

    PubMed

    Cosker, Katharina E; Fenstermacher, Sara J; Pazyra-Murphy, Maria F; Elliott, Hunter L; Segal, Rosalind A

    2016-05-01

    To achieve accurate spatiotemporal patterns of gene expression, RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) guide nuclear processing, intracellular trafficking and local translation of target mRNAs. In neurons, RBPs direct transport of target mRNAs to sites of translation in remote axons and dendrites. However, it is not known whether an individual RBP coordinately regulates multiple mRNAs within these morphologically complex cells. Here we identify SFPQ (splicing factor, poly-glutamine rich) as an RBP that binds and regulates multiple mRNAs in dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons and thereby promotes neurotrophin-dependent axonal viability. SFPQ acts in nuclei, cytoplasm and axons to regulate functionally related mRNAs essential for axon survival. Notably, SFPQ is required for coassembly of LaminB2 (Lmnb2) and Bclw (Bcl2l2) mRNAs in RNA granules and for axonal trafficking of these mRNAs. Together these data demonstrate that SFPQ orchestrates spatial gene expression of a newly identified RNA regulon essential for axonal viability.

  11. Calcium release from intra-axonal endoplasmic reticulum leads to axon degeneration through mitochondrial dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Villegas, Rosario; Martinez, Nicolas W; Lillo, Jorge; Pihan, Phillipe; Hernandez, Diego; Twiss, Jeffery L; Court, Felipe A

    2014-05-21

    Axonal degeneration represents an early pathological event in neurodegeneration, constituting an important target for neuroprotection. Regardless of the initial injury, which could be toxic, mechanical, metabolic, or genetic, degeneration of axons shares a common mechanism involving mitochondrial dysfunction and production of reactive oxygen species. Critical steps in this degenerative process are still unknown. Here we show that calcium release from the axonal endoplasmic reticulum (ER) through ryanodine and IP3 channels activates the mitochondrial permeability transition pore and contributes to axonal degeneration triggered by both mechanical and toxic insults in ex vivo and in vitro mouse and rat model systems. These data reveal a critical and early ER-dependent step during axonal degeneration, providing novel targets for axonal protection in neurodegenerative conditions.

  12. Axon initial segment Kv1 channels control axonal action potential waveform and synaptic efficacy.

    PubMed

    Kole, Maarten H P; Letzkus, Johannes J; Stuart, Greg J

    2007-08-16

    Action potentials are binary signals that transmit information via their rate and temporal pattern. In this context, the axon is thought of as a transmission line, devoid of a role in neuronal computation. Here, we show a highly localized role of axonal Kv1 potassium channels in shaping the action potential waveform in the axon initial segment (AIS) of layer 5 pyramidal neurons independent of the soma. Cell-attached recordings revealed a 10-fold increase in Kv1 channel density over the first 50 microm of the AIS. Inactivation of AIS and proximal axonal Kv1 channels, as occurs during slow subthreshold somatodendritic depolarizations, led to a distance-dependent broadening of axonal action potentials, as well as an increase in synaptic strength at proximal axonal terminals. Thus, Kv1 channels are strategically positioned to integrate slow subthreshold signals, providing control of the presynaptic action potential waveform and synaptic coupling in local cortical circuits.

  13. The developmentally regulated expression of Menkes protein ATP7A suggests a role in axon extension and synaptogenesis.

    PubMed

    El Meskini, Rajaâ; Cline, Laura B; Eipper, Betty A; Ronnett, Gabriele V

    2005-01-01

    Menkes disease (MD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by mutation of the copper transporter ATP7A. While several enzymes expressed in mature neurons require copper, MD neurodegenerative changes cannot be explained by known requirements for ATP7A in neuronal development. To investigate additional roles for ATP7A during development, we characterized its pattern of expression using the olfactory system as a neurodevelopmental model. ATP7A expression in neurons was developmentally regulated rather than constitutively. Initially expressed in the cell bodies of developing neurons, ATP7A protein later shifted to extending axons, peaking prior to synaptogenesis. Similarly, after injury-stimulated neurogenesis, ATP7A expression increased in neurons and axons preceding synaptogenesis. Interestingly, copper-transport-deficient ATP7A still exhibits axonal localization. These results support a role for ATP7A in axon extension, which may contribute to the severe neurodegeneration characteristic of MD.

  14. Flamingo regulates R8 axon-axon and axon-target interactions in the Drosophila visual system.

    PubMed

    Senti, Kirsten-André; Usui, Tadao; Boucke, Karin; Greber, Urs; Uemura, Tadashi; Dickson, Barry J

    2003-05-13

    Photoreceptors (R cells) in the Drosophila retina connect to targets in three distinct layers of the optic lobe of the brain: R1-R6 connect to the lamina, and R7 and R8 connect to distinct layers in the medulla. In each of these layers, R axon termini are arranged in evenly spaced topographic arrays. In a genetic screen for mutants with abnormal R cell connectivity, we recovered mutations in flamingo (fmi). fmi encodes a seven-transmembrane cadherin, previously shown to function in planar cell polarity and in dendritic patterning. Here, we show that fmi has two specific functions in R8 axon targeting: it facilitates competitive interactions between adjacent R8 axons to ensure their correct spacing, and it promotes the formation of stable connections between R8 axons and their target cells in the medulla. The former suggests a general role for Fmi in establishing nonoverlapping dendritic and axonal target fields. The latter, together with the finding that N-Cadherin has an analogous role in R7 axon-target interactions, points to a cadherin-based system for target layer specificity in the Drosophila visual system.

  15. N-Methyl-D-Aspartate Receptor-Mediated Axonal Injury in Adult Rat Corpus Callosum

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jingdong; Liu, Jianuo; Fox, Howard S.; Xiong, Huangui

    2013-01-01

    Damage to white matter such as corpus callosum (CC) is a pathological characteristic in many brain disorders. Glutamate (Glut) excitotoxicity through AMPA receptors on oligodendrocyte (OL) was previously considered as a mechanism for white matter damage. Recent studies have shown that N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are expressed on myelin sheath of neonatal rat OL processes and that activation of these receptors mediated demyelization. Whether NMDARs are expressed in the adult CC and are involved in excitotoxic axonal injury remains to be determined. In this study, we demonstrate the presence of NMDARs in the adult rat CC and their distributions in myelinated nerve fibers and OL somata by means of immunocytochemical staining and Western blot. Incubation of the CC slices with Glut or NMDA induced axonal injury as revealed by analyzing amplitude of CC fiber compound action potentials (CAPs) and input–output response. Both Glut and NMDA decreased the CAP amplitude and input–output responses, suggesting an involvement of NMDARs in Glut- and NMDA-induced axonal injury. The involvement of NMDAR in Glut-induced axonal injury was further assayed by detection of β-amyloid precursor protein (β-APP) in the CC axonal fibers. Treatment of the CC slices with Glut resulted in β-APP accumulation in the CC fibers as detected by Western blot, reflecting an impairment of axonal transport function. This injurious effect of Glut on CC axonal transport was significantly blocked by MK801. Taken together, these results show that NMDARs are expressed in the adult CC and are involved in excitotoxic activity in adult CC slices in vitro. PMID:23161705

  16. Nerve Growth Factor Promotes Reorganization of the Axonal Microtubule Array at Sites of Axon Collateral Branching

    PubMed Central

    Ketschek, Andrea; Jones, Steven; Spillane, Mirela; Korobova, Farida; Svitkina, Tatyana; Gallo, Gianluca

    2015-01-01

    The localized debundling of the axonal microtubule array and the entry of microtubules into axonal filopodia are two defining features of collateral branching. We report that nerve growth factor (NGF), a branch inducing signal, increases the frequency of microtubule debundling along the axon shaft of chicken embryonic sensory neurons. Sites of debundling correlate strongly with the localized targeting of microtubules into filopodia. Platinum replica electron microscopy suggests physical interactions between debundled microtubules and axonal actin filaments. However, as evidenced by depolymerization of actin filaments and inhibition of myosin II, actomyosin force generation does not promote debundling. In contrast, loss of actin filaments or inhibition of myosin II activity promotes debundling, indicating that axonal actomyosin forces suppress debundling. MAP1B is a microtubule associated protein that represses axon branching. Following treatment with NGF, microtubules penetrating filopodia during the early stages of branching exhibited lower levels of associated MAP1B. NGF increased and decreased the levels of MAP1B phosphorylated at a GSK-3β site (pMAP1B) along the axon shaft and within axonal filopodia, respectively. The levels of MAP1B and pMAP1B were not altered at sites of debundling, relative to the rest of the axon. Unlike the previously determined effects of NGF on the axonal actin cytoskeleton, the effects of NGF on microtubule debundling were not affected by inhibition of protein synthesis. Collectively, these data indicate that NGF promotes localized axonal microtubule debundling, that actomyosin forces antagonize microtubule debundling and that NGF regulates pMAP1B in axonal filopodia during the early stages of collateral branch formation. PMID:25846486

  17. Regulation of Conduction Time along Axons

    PubMed Central

    Seidl, Armin H.

    2013-01-01

    Timely delivery of information is essential for proper function of the nervous system. Precise regulation of nerve conduction velocity is needed for correct exertion of motor skills, sensory integration and cognitive functions. In vertebrates, the rapid transmission of signals along nerve fibers is made possible by the myelination of axons and the resulting saltatory conduction in between nodes of Ranvier. Myelin is a specialization of glia cells and is provided by oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system. Myelination not only maximizes conduction velocity, but also provides a means to systematically regulate conduction times in the nervous system. Systematic regulation of conduction velocity along axons, and thus systematic regulation of conduction time in between neural areas, is a common occurrence in the nervous system. To date, little is understood about the mechanism that underlies systematic conduction velocity regulation and conduction time synchrony. Node assembly, internode distance (node spacing) and axon diameter - all parameters determining the speed of signal propagation along axons - are controlled by myelinating glia. Therefore, an interaction between glial cells and neurons has been suggested. This review summarizes examples of neural systems in which conduction velocity is regulated by anatomical variations along axons. While functional implications in these systems are not always clear, recent studies in the auditory system of birds and mammals present examples of conduction velocity regulation in systems with high temporal precision and a defined biological function. Together these findings suggest an active process that shapes the interaction between axons and myelinating glia to control conduction velocity along axons. Future studies involving these systems may provide further insight into how specific conduction times in the brain are established and maintained in development. Throughout the text, conduction velocity is used for the

  18. Regulation of conduction time along axons.

    PubMed

    Seidl, A H

    2014-09-12

    Timely delivery of information is essential for proper functioning of the nervous system. Precise regulation of nerve conduction velocity is needed for correct exertion of motor skills, sensory integration and cognitive functions. In vertebrates, the rapid transmission of signals along nerve fibers is made possible by the myelination of axons and the resulting saltatory conduction in between nodes of Ranvier. Myelin is a specialization of glia cells and is provided by oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system. Myelination not only maximizes conduction velocity, but also provides a means to systematically regulate conduction times in the nervous system. Systematic regulation of conduction velocity along axons, and thus systematic regulation of conduction time in between neural areas, is a common occurrence in the nervous system. To date, little is understood about the mechanism that underlies systematic conduction velocity regulation and conduction time synchrony. Node assembly, internode distance (node spacing) and axon diameter - all parameters determining the speed of signal propagation along axons - are controlled by myelinating glia. Therefore, an interaction between glial cells and neurons has been suggested. This review summarizes examples of neural systems in which conduction velocity is regulated by anatomical variations along axons. While functional implications in these systems are not always clear, recent studies on the auditory system of birds and mammals present examples of conduction velocity regulation in systems with high temporal precision and a defined biological function. Together these findings suggest an active process that shapes the interaction between axons and myelinating glia to control conduction velocity along axons. Future studies involving these systems may provide further insight into how specific conduction times in the brain are established and maintained in development. Throughout the text, conduction velocity is used for the

  19. Excitability tuning of axons in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Ohura, Shunsuke; Kamiya, Haruyuki

    2016-05-01

    The axon is a long neuronal process that originates from the soma and extends towards the presynaptic terminals. The pioneering studies on the squid giant axon or the spinal cord motoneuron established that the axon conducts action potentials faithfully to the presynaptic terminals with self-regenerative processes of membrane excitation. Recent studies challenged the notion that the fundamental understandings obtained from the study of squid giant axons are readily applicable to the axons in the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). These studies revealed that the functional and structural properties of the CNS axons are much more variable than previously thought. In this review article, we summarize the recent understandings of axon physiology in the mammalian CNS due to progress in the subcellular recording techniques which allow direct recordings from the axonal membranes, with emphasis on the hippocampal mossy fibers as a representative en passant axons typical for cortical axons.

  20. LYSOSOMAL ACTIVITY ASSOCIATED WITH DEVELOPMENTAL AXON PRUNING

    PubMed Central

    Song, Jae W.; Misgeld, Thomas; Kang, Hyuno; Knecht, Sharm; Lu, Ju; Cao, Yi; Cotman, Susan L.; Bishop, Derron L.; Lichtman, Jeff W.

    2009-01-01

    Clearance of cellular debris is a critical feature of the developing nervous system, as evidenced by the severe neurological consequences of lysosomal storage diseases in children. An important developmental process, that generates considerable cellular debris, is synapse elimination in which many axonal branches are pruned. The fate of these pruned branches is not known. Here, we investigate the role of lysosomal activity in neurons and glia in the removal of axon branches during early postnatal life. Using a probe for lysosomal activity, we observed robust staining associated with retreating motor axons. Lysosomal function was involved in axon removal because retreating axons were cleared more slowly in a mouse model of a lysosomal storage disease. In addition, we found lysosomal activity in the cerebellum at the time of, and at sites where, climbing fibers are eliminated. We propose that lysosomal activity is a central feature of synapse elimination. Moreover, staining for lysosomal activity may serve as a marker for regions of the developing nervous system undergoing axon pruning. PMID:18768693

  1. microRNAs in axon guidance

    PubMed Central

    Iyer, Archana N.; Bellon, Anaïs; Baudet, Marie-Laure

    2014-01-01

    Brain wiring is a highly intricate process in which trillions of neuronal connections are established. Its initial phase is particularly crucial in establishing the general framework of neuronal circuits. During this early step, differentiating neurons extend axons, which reach their target by navigating through a complex environment with extreme precision. Research in the past 20 years has unraveled a vast and complex array of chemotropic cues that guide the leading tip of axons, the growth cone, throughout its journey. Tight regulation of these cues, and of their receptors and signaling pathways, is necessary for the high degree of accuracy required during circuit formation. However, little is known about the nature of regulatory molecules or mechanisms fine-tuning axonal cue response. Here we review recent, and somewhat fragmented, research on the possibility that microRNAs (miRNAs) could be key fine-tuning regulatory molecules in axon guidance. miRNAs appear to shape long-range axon guidance, fasciculation and targeting. We also present several lines of evidence suggesting that miRNAs could have a compartmentalized and differential action at the cell soma, and within axons and growth cones. PMID:24672429

  2. cJun promotes CNS axon growth

    PubMed Central

    Lerch, Jessica K; Martinez, Yania; Bixby, John L; Lemmon, Vance P

    2014-01-01

    A number of genes regulate regeneration of peripheral axons, but their ability to drive axon growth and regeneration in the central nervous system (CNS) remains largely untested. To address this question we overexpressed eight transcription factors and one small GTPase alone and in pairwise combinations to test whether combinatorial overexpression would have a synergistic impact on CNS neuron neurite growth. The Jun oncogene/signal transducer and activator of transcription 6 (JUN/STAT6) combination increased neurite growth in dissociated cortical neurons and in injured cortical slices. In injured cortical slices, JUN overexpression increased axon growth to a similar extent as JUN and STAT6 together. Interestingly, JUN overexpression was not associated with increased growth associated protein 43 (GAP43) or integrin alpha 7 (ITGA7) expression, though these are predicted transcriptional targets. This study demonstrates that JUN overexpression in cortical neurons stimulates axon growth, but does so independently of changes in expression of genes thought to be critical for JUN’s effects on axon growth. We conclude that JUN activity underlies this CNS axonal growth response, and that it is mechanistically distinct from peripheral regeneration responses, in which increases in JUN expression coincide with increases in GAP43 expression. PMID:24521823

  3. Early phenotype expression of cortical neurons: Evidence that a subclass of migrating neurons have callosal axons

    SciTech Connect

    Schwartz, M.L.; Rakic, P.; Goldman-Rakic, P.S. )

    1991-02-15

    The use of ({sup 3}H)thymidine labeling in combination with various axonal transport tracers has revealed that a subset of migrating neurons in the fetal monkey cerebrum issue axons to the opposite cerebral hemisphere while still migrating to their final positions in the cortical plate. Other cortical neurons with the same birthdate (i.e., that underwent their last round of DNA synthesis on the same day) are not retrogradely labeled by tracer injections of the opposite hemisphere. These findings suggest that the cardinal distinction between projection and local circuit neurons may be specified in postmitotic neurons before they acquire their final positions in the cortex.

  4. Prolyl isomerase Pin1 regulates axon guidance by stabilizing CRMP2A selectively in distal axons

    PubMed Central

    Balastik, Martin; Zhou, Xiao Zhen; Alberich-Jorda, Meritxell; Weissova, Romana; Žiak, Jakub; Pazyra-Murphy, Maria F.; Cosker, Katharina E; Machonova, Olga; Kozmikova, Iryna; Chen, Chun-Hau; Pastorino, Lucia; Asara, John M.; Cole, Adam; Sutherland, Calum; Segal, Rosalind A.; Lu, Kun Ping

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Axon guidance relies on precise translation of the gradients of the extracellular signals into local changes of cytoskeletal dynamics, but the molecular mechanisms regulating dose-dependent responses of growth cones are still poorly understood. Here we show that during embryonic development in growing axons low level of Semaphorin3A stimulation is buffered by the prolyl isomerase Pin1. We demonstrate, that Pin1 stabilizes CDK5-phosphorylated CRMP2A, the major isoform of CRMP2 in distal axons. Consequently, Pin1 knockdown or knockout reduces CRMP2A level specifically in distal axons and inhibits axon growth, which can be fully rescued by Pin1 or CRMP2A expression. Moreover, Pin1 knockdown or knockout increases sensitivity to Sema3A-induced growth cone collapse in vitro and in vivo leading to developmental abnormalities in axon guidance. These results identify an important isoform-specific function and regulation of CRMP2A in controlling axon growth, and uncover Pin1-catalyzed prolyl isomerization as a regulatory mechanism in axon guidance. PMID:26489457

  5. Axon injury triggers EFA-6 mediated destabilization of axonal microtubules via TACC and doublecortin like kinase.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lizhen; Chuang, Marian; Koorman, Thijs; Boxem, Mike; Jin, Yishi; Chisholm, Andrew D

    2015-09-04

    Axon injury triggers a series of changes in the axonal cytoskeleton that are prerequisites for effective axon regeneration. In Caenorhabditis elegans the signaling protein Exchange Factor for ARF-6 (EFA-6) is a potent intrinsic inhibitor of axon regrowth. Here we show that axon injury triggers rapid EFA-6-dependent inhibition of axonal microtubule (MT) dynamics, concomitant with relocalization of EFA-6. EFA-6 relocalization and axon regrowth inhibition require a conserved 18-aa motif in its otherwise intrinsically disordered N-terminal domain. The EFA-6 N-terminus binds the MT-associated proteins TAC-1/Transforming-Acidic-Coiled-Coil, and ZYG-8/Doublecortin-Like-Kinase, both of which are required for regenerative growth cone formation, and which act downstream of EFA-6. After injury TAC-1 and EFA-6 transiently relocalize to sites marked by the MT minus end binding protein PTRN-1/Patronin. We propose that EFA-6 acts as a bifunctional injury-responsive regulator of axonal MT dynamics, acting at the cell cortex in the steady state and at MT minus ends after injury.

  6. Filamin A is required in injured axons for HDAC5 activity and axon regeneration.

    PubMed

    Cho, Yongcheol; Park, Dongeun; Cavalli, Valeria

    2015-09-11

    Microtubule dynamics are important for axon growth during development as well as axon regeneration after injury. We have previously identified HDAC5 as an injury-regulated tubulin deacetylase that functions at the injury site to promote axon regeneration. However, the mechanisms involved in the spatial control of HDAC5 activity remain poorly understood. Here we reveal that HDAC5 interacts with the actin binding protein filamin A via its C-terminal domain. Filamin A plays critical roles in HDAC5-dependent tubulin deacetylation because, in cells lacking filamin A, the levels of acetylated tubulin are elevated markedly. We found that nerve injury increases filamin A axonal expression in a protein synthesis-dependent manner. Reducing filamin A levels or interfering with the interaction between HDAC5 and filamin A prevents injury-induced tubulin deacetylation as well as HDAC5 localization at the injured axon tips. In addition, neurons lacking filamin A display reduced axon regeneration. Our findings suggest a model in which filamin A local translation following axon injury controls localized HDAC5 activity to promote axon regeneration.

  7. Filamin A Is Required in Injured Axons for HDAC5 Activity and Axon Regeneration*

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Yongcheol; Park, Dongeun; Cavalli, Valeria

    2015-01-01

    Microtubule dynamics are important for axon growth during development as well as axon regeneration after injury. We have previously identified HDAC5 as an injury-regulated tubulin deacetylase that functions at the injury site to promote axon regeneration. However, the mechanisms involved in the spatial control of HDAC5 activity remain poorly understood. Here we reveal that HDAC5 interacts with the actin binding protein filamin A via its C-terminal domain. Filamin A plays critical roles in HDAC5-dependent tubulin deacetylation because, in cells lacking filamin A, the levels of acetylated tubulin are elevated markedly. We found that nerve injury increases filamin A axonal expression in a protein synthesis-dependent manner. Reducing filamin A levels or interfering with the interaction between HDAC5 and filamin A prevents injury-induced tubulin deacetylation as well as HDAC5 localization at the injured axon tips. In addition, neurons lacking filamin A display reduced axon regeneration. Our findings suggest a model in which filamin A local translation following axon injury controls localized HDAC5 activity to promote axon regeneration. PMID:26157139

  8. Axonal Cleaved Caspase-3 Regulates Axon Targeting and Morphogenesis in the Developing Auditory Brainstem

    PubMed Central

    Rotschafer, Sarah E.; Allen-Sharpley, Michelle R.; Cramer, Karina S.

    2016-01-01

    Caspase-3 is a cysteine protease that is most commonly associated with cell death. Recent studies have shown additional roles in mediating cell differentiation, cell proliferation and development of cell morphology. We investigated the role of caspase-3 in the development of chick auditory brainstem nuclei during embryogenesis. Immunofluorescence from embryonic days E6–13 revealed that the temporal expression of cleaved caspase-3 follows the ascending anatomical pathway. The expression is first seen in the auditory portion of VIIIth nerve including central axonal regions projecting to nucleus magnocellularis (NM), then later in NM axons projecting to nucleus laminaris (NL), and subsequently in NL dendrites. To examine the function of cleaved caspase-3 in chick auditory brainstem development, we blocked caspase-3 cleavage in developing chick embryos with the caspase-3 inhibitor Z-DEVD-FMK from E6 to E9, then examined NM and NL morphology and NM axonal targeting on E10. NL lamination in treated embryos was disorganized and the neuropil around NL contained a significant number of glial cells normally excluded from this region. Additionally, NM axons projected into inappropriate portions of NL in Z-DEVD-FMK treated embyros. We found that the presence of misrouted axons was associated with more severe NL disorganization. The effects of axonal caspase-3 inhibition on both NL morphogenesis and NM axon targeting suggest that these developmental processes are coordinated, likely through communication between axons and their targets. PMID:27822180

  9. Enhanced axon outgrowth and improved long-distance axon regeneration in sprouty2 deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Marvaldi, Letizia; Thongrong, Sitthisak; Kozłowska, Anna; Irschick, Regina; Pritz, Christian O; Bäumer, Bastian; Ronchi, Giulia; Geuna, Stefano; Hausott, Barbara; Klimaschewski, Lars

    2015-03-01

    Sprouty (Spry) proteins are negative feedback inhibitors of receptor tyrosine kinase signaling. Downregulation of Spry2 has been demonstrated to promote elongative axon growth of cultured peripheral and central neurons. Here, we analyzed Spry2 global knockout mice with respect to axon outgrowth in vitro and peripheral axon regeneration in vivo. Neurons dissociated from adult Spry2 deficient sensory ganglia revealed stronger extracellular signal-regulated kinase activation and enhanced axon outgrowth. Prominent axon elongation was observed in heterozygous Spry2(+/-) neuron cultures, whereas homozygous Spry2(-/-) neurons predominantly exhibited a branching phenotype. Following sciatic nerve crush, Spry2(+/-) mice recovered faster in motor but not sensory testing paradigms (Spry2(-/-) mice did not tolerate anesthesia required for nerve surgery). We attribute the improvement in the rotarod test to higher numbers of myelinated fibers in the regenerating sciatic nerve, higher densities of motor endplates in hind limb muscles and increased levels of GAP-43 mRNA, a downstream target of extracellular regulated kinase signaling. Conversely, homozygous Spry2(-/-) mice revealed enhanced mechanosensory function (von Frey's test) that was accompanied by an increased innervation of the epidermis, elevated numbers of nonmyelinated axons and more IB4-positive neurons in dorsal root ganglia. The present results corroborate the functional significance of receptor tyrosine kinase signaling inhibitors for axon outgrowth during development and nerve regeneration and propose Spry2 as a novel potential target for pharmacological inhibition to accelerate long-distance axon regeneration in injured peripheral nerves.

  10. Colitis elicits differential changes in the expression levels of receptor tyrosine kinase TrkA and TrkB in colonic afferent neurons: A possible involvement of axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Li-Ya; Grider, John R

    2010-01-01

    The role of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in colitis-induced hypersensitivity has been suggested. NGF and BDNF facilitate cellular physiology through binding to receptor tyrosine kinase TrkA and TrkB respectively. The present study by examining the mRNA and/or protein levels of TrkA and TrkB in the distal colon and in colonic primary afferent neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) during colitis demonstrated that colitis elicited location-specific changes in the mRNA and protein levels of TrkA and TrkB in colonic primary sensory pathways. In colitis both the TrkA and TrkB protein levels were increased in the L1 and S1 DRGs in a time-dependent manner; however, the level of TrkB mRNA but not TrkA mRNA was increased in these DRGs. Further experiments showed that colitis facilitated a retrograde transport of TrkA protein toward and an anterograde transport of TrkA mRNA away from the DRG, which may contribute to the increased TrkA mRNA level in the distal colon during colitis. Colitis also increased the level of NGF mRNA but not BDNF mRNA in the distal colon. Double staining showed that the expression of TrkA but not TrkB was increased in the specifically labeled colonic afferent neurons in the L1 and S1 DRGs during colitis; this increase in TrkA level was attenuated by pretreatment with resiniferatoxin. These results suggested that colitis-induced primary afferent activation involved retrograde transport of TrkA but not TrkB from the distal colon to primary afferent neurons in DRG. PMID:20638179

  11. Normal spastin gene dosage is specifically required for axon regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Michelle C.; Rao, Kavitha; Gheres, Kyle W.; Kim, Seahee; Tao, Juan; Rochelle, Caroline La; Folker, Christin T.; Sherwood, Nina T.; Rolls, Melissa M.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Axon regeneration allows neurons to repair circuits after trauma, but most of the molecular players remain to be identified. As microtubule rearrangements have been observed in injured neurons, we tested whether microtubule severing proteins might play a role in axon regeneration. We found that axon regeneration is extremely sensitive to levels of the microtubule severing protein spastin. While microtubule behavior in uninjured neurons was not perturbed in animals heterozygous for a spastin null allele, axon regeneration was severely disrupted in this background. Two types of axon regeneration, regeneration of an axon from a dendrite after proximal axotomy and regeneration of an axon from the stump after distal axotomy, were defective in Drosophila with one mutant copy of the spastin gene. Other types of axon and dendrite outgrowth, including regrowth of dendrites after pruning, were normal in heterozygotes. We conclude that regenerative axon growth is uniquely sensitive to spastin gene dosage. PMID:23122959

  12. Mitochondrial immobilization mediated by syntaphilin facilitates survival of demyelinated axons

    PubMed Central

    Ohno, Nobuhiko; Chiang, Hao; Mahad, Don J.; Kidd, Grahame J.; Liu, LiPing; Ransohoff, Richard M.; Sheng, Zu-Hang; Komuro, Hitoshi; Trapp, Bruce D.

    2014-01-01

    Axonal degeneration is a primary cause of permanent neurological disability in individuals with the CNS demyelinating disease multiple sclerosis. Dysfunction of axonal mitochondria and imbalanced energy demand and supply are implicated in degeneration of chronically demyelinated axons. The purpose of this study was to define the roles of mitochondrial volume and distribution in axonal degeneration following acute CNS demyelination. We show that the axonal mitochondrial volume increase following acute demyelination of WT CNS axons does not occur in demyelinated axons deficient in syntaphilin, an axonal molecule that immobilizes stationary mitochondria to microtubules. These findings were supported by time-lapse imaging of WT and syntaphilin-deficient axons in vitro. When demyelinated, axons deficient in syntaphilin degenerate at a significantly greater rate than WT axons, and this degeneration can be rescued by reducing axonal electrical activity with the Na+ channel blocker flecainide. These results support the concept that syntaphilin-mediated immobilization of mitochondria to microtubules is required for the volume increase of axonal mitochondria following acute demyelination and protects against axonal degeneration in the CNS. PMID:24958879

  13. How Schwann Cells Sort Axons: New Concepts.

    PubMed

    Feltri, M Laura; Poitelon, Yannick; Previtali, Stefano Carlo

    2016-06-01

    Peripheral nerves contain large myelinated and small unmyelinated (Remak) fibers that perform different functions. The choice to myelinate or not is dictated to Schwann cells by the axon itself, based on the amount of neuregulin I-type III exposed on its membrane. Peripheral axons are more important in determining the final myelination fate than central axons, and the implications for this difference in Schwann cells and oligodendrocytes are discussed. Interestingly, this choice is reversible during pathology, accounting for the remarkable plasticity of Schwann cells, and contributing to the regenerative potential of the peripheral nervous system. Radial sorting is the process by which Schwann cells choose larger axons to myelinate during development. This crucial morphogenetic step is a prerequisite for myelination and for differentiation of Remak fibers, and is arrested in human diseases due to mutations in genes coding for extracellular matrix and linkage molecules. In this review we will summarize progresses made in the last years by a flurry of reverse genetic experiments in mice and fish. This work revealed novel molecules that control radial sorting, and contributed unexpected ideas to our understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms that control radial sorting of axons.

  14. Contribution of the Runx1 transcription factor to axonal pathfinding and muscle innervation by hypoglossal motoneurons.

    PubMed

    Yoshikawa, Masaaki; Hirabayashi, Mizuki; Ito, Ryota; Ozaki, Shigeru; Aizawa, Shin; Masuda, Tomoyuki; Senzaki, Kouji; Shiga, Takashi

    2015-11-01

    The runt-related transcription factor Runx1 contributes to cell type specification and axonal targeting projections of the nociceptive dorsal root ganglion neurons. Runx1 is also expressed in the central nervous system, but little is known of its functions in brain development. At mouse embryonic day (E) 17.5, Runx1-positive neurons were detected in the ventrocaudal subdivision of the hypoglossal nucleus. Runx1-positive neurons lacked calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) expression, whereas Runx1-negative neurons expressed CGRP. Expression of CGRP was not changed in Runx1-deficient mice at E17.5, suggesting that Runx1 alone does not suppress CGRP expression. Hypoglossal axon projections to the intrinsic vertical (V) and transverse (T) tongue muscles were sparser in Runx1-deficient mice at E17.5 compared to age-matched wild-type littermates. Concomitantly, vesicular acetylcholine transporter-positive axon terminals and acetylcholine receptor clusters were less dense in the V and T tongue muscles of Runx1-deficient mice. These abnormalities in axonal projection were not caused by a reduction in the total number hypoglossal neurons, failed synaptogenesis, or tongue muscles deficits. Our results implicate Runx1 in the targeting of ventrocaudal hypoglossal axons to specific tongue muscles. However, Runx1 deficiency did not alter neuronal survival or the expression of multiple motoneuron markers as in other neuronal populations. Thus, Runx1 appears to have distinct developmental functions in different brain regions.

  15. Imaging Axonal Degeneration and Repair in Preclinical Animal Models of Multiple Sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Yandamuri, Soumya S.; Lane, Thomas E.

    2016-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a central nervous system (CNS) disease characterized by chronic neuroinflammation, demyelination, and axonal damage. Infiltration of activated lymphocytes and myeloid cells are thought to be primarily responsible for white matter damage and axonopathy. Over time, this neurologic damage manifests clinically as debilitating motor and cognitive symptoms. Existing MS therapies focus on symptom relief and delay of disease progression through reduction of neuroinflammation. However, long-term strategies to remyelinate, protect, or regenerate axons have remained elusive, posing a challenge to treating progressive forms of MS. Preclinical mouse models and techniques, such as immunohistochemistry, flow cytometry, and genomic and proteomic analysis have provided advances in our understanding of discrete time-points of pathology following disease induction. More recently, in vivo and in situ two-photon (2P) microscopy has made it possible to visualize continuous real-time cellular behavior and structural changes occurring within the CNS during neuropathology. Research utilizing 2P imaging to study axonopathy in neuroinflammatory demyelinating disease has focused on five areas: (1) axonal morphologic changes, (2) organelle transport and health, (3) relationship to inflammation, (4) neuronal excitotoxicity, and (5) regenerative therapies. 2P imaging may also be used to identify novel therapeutic targets via identification and clarification of dynamic cellular and molecular mechanisms of axonal regeneration and remyelination. Here, we review tools that have made 2P accessible for imaging neuropathologies and advances in our understanding of axonal degeneration and repair in preclinical models of demyelinating diseases. PMID:27242796

  16. ATP7A (Menkes Protein) functions in Axonal Targeting and Synaptogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Meskini, Rajaâ El; Crabtree, Kelli L.; Cline, Laura B.; Mains, Richard E.; Eipper, Betty A.; Ronnett, Gabriele V.

    2007-01-01

    Menkes Disease (MD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by mutations in the copper transporter, ATP7A, a P-type ATPase. We previously used the olfactory system to demonstrate that ATP7A expression is developmentally, not constitutive, regulated, peaking during synaptogenesis when it is highly expressed in extending axons in a copper-independent manner. Although not known to be associated with axonal functions, we explored the possibility that the inability of mutant ATP7A to support axon outgrowth contributes to the neurodegeneration seen in MD. In vivo analysis of the olfactory system in mottled brindled (Atp7aMobr) mice, a rodent model for MD, demonstrates that ATP7A deficiency affects olfactory sensory neuron (OSN) maturation. Disrupted OSN axonal projections and mitral/tufted cell dendritic growth lead to altered synapse integrity and glomerular disorganization in the olfactory bulbs of Atp7aMobr mice. Our data indicate that the neuronal abnormalities observed in MD are a result of specific age-dependent developmental defects. This study demonstrates a role for ATP7A and/or copper in axon outgrowth and synaptogenesis, and will further help identify the cause of the neuropathology that characterizes MD. PMID:17215139

  17. Unique Function of Kinesin Kif5A in Localization of Mitochondria in Axons

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Philip D.; Shen, Kimberle; Sapio, Matthew R.; Glenn, Thomas D.; Talbot, William S.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in Kinesin proteins (Kifs) are linked to various neurological diseases, but the specific and redundant functions of the vertebrate Kifs are incompletely understood. For example, Kif5A, but not other Kinesin-1 heavy-chain family members, is implicated in Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT) and Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP), but the mechanism of its involvement in the progressive axonal degeneration characteristic of these diseases is not well understood. We report that zebrafish kif5Aa mutants exhibit hyperexcitability, peripheral polyneuropathy, and axonal degeneration reminiscent of CMT and HSP. Strikingly, although kif5 genes are thought to act largely redundantly in other contexts, and zebrafish peripheral neurons express five kif5 genes, kif5Aa mutant peripheral sensory axons lack mitochondria and degenerate. We show that this Kif5Aa-specific function is cell autonomous and is mediated by its C-terminal tail, as only Kif5Aa and chimeric motors containing the Kif5Aa C-tail can rescue deficits. Finally, concurrent loss of the kinesin-3, kif1b, or its adaptor kbp, exacerbates axonal degeneration via a nonmitochondrial cargo common to Kif5Aa. Our results shed light on Kinesin complexity and reveal determinants of specific Kif5A functions in mitochondrial transport, adaptor binding, and axonal maintenance. PMID:25355224

  18. ATP7A (Menkes protein) functions in axonal targeting and synaptogenesis.

    PubMed

    El Meskini, Rajaâ; Crabtree, Kelli L; Cline, Laura B; Mains, Richard E; Eipper, Betty A; Ronnett, Gabriele V

    2007-03-01

    Menkes disease (MD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by mutations in the copper transporter, ATP7A, a P-type ATPase. We previously used the olfactory system to demonstrate that ATP7A expression is developmentally, not constitutive, regulated, peaking during synaptogenesis when it is highly expressed in extending axons in a copper-independent manner. Although not known to be associated with axonal functions, we explored the possibility that the inability of mutant ATP7A to support axon outgrowth contributes to the neurodegeneration seen in MD. In vivo analysis of the olfactory system in mottled brindled (Atp7aMobr) mice, a rodent model for MD, demonstrates that ATP7A deficiency affects olfactory sensory neuron (OSN) maturation. Disrupted OSN axonal projections and mitral/tufted cell dendritic growth lead to altered synapse integrity and glomerular disorganization in the olfactory bulbs of Atp7aMobr mice. Our data indicate that the neuronal abnormalities observed in MD are a result of specific age-dependent developmental defects. This study demonstrates a role for ATP7A and/or copper in axon outgrowth and synaptogenesis, and will further help identify the cause of the neuropathology that characterizes MD.

  19. Increased beta-actin and tubulin polymerization in regrowing axons: relationship to the conditioning lesion effect.

    PubMed

    Lund, Linda M; Machado, Victor M; McQuarrie, Irvine G

    2002-12-01

    Spinal motor neurons of Sprague-Dawley rats were examined to determine which of the neuronal isoforms of actin (beta or gamma) upregulate following axon injury. In situ hybridization studies showed greater beta-actin mRNA levels but no change in gamma-actin mRNA levels-suggesting that axon regrowth utilizes beta-actin. We radiolabeled the newly synthesized actin and tubulin that are subsequently transported in the axon to the site of an axotomizing injury. This allowed us to evaluate changes in polymerization as new cytoskeletal elements approach the injury site. Previous studies had shown that the rate of the most rapid subcomponent of actin and tubulin transport (called SCb) accelerates following axotomy (J. Jacob and I. McQuarrie, J. Neurobiol. 22: 570-583, 1991). This rate increase is associated with an increased proportion of SCb tubulin and actin in polymer (vs monomer) form (J. Jacob and I. McQuarrie, J. Neurosci, Res. 43: 412-419, 1996). However, in that study newly synthesized proteins were radiolabeled at 7 days after axotomy-which is at the peak of increased protein synthesis. This time-course did not examine actin and tubulin that were already in transit in axons when the injury occurred. This actin and tubulin would enter the regrowing axons first. Here, we have radiolabeled newly synthesized proteins 3 days prior to axotomy. For beta-tubulin, the ratio of monomer to polymer was unaffected. For actin, the equilibrium shifted strongly toward polymerization. We conclude that the acceleration of axonal outgrowth seen after the second of two serial axotomies (the "conditioning lesion effect") is related to the ability of actin that is already in transit to polymerize in response to the first axotomy.

  20. Microfluidic device for unidirectional axon growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malishev, E.; Pimashkin, A.; Gladkov, A.; Pigareva, Y.; Bukatin, A.; Kazantsev, V.; Mukhina, I.; Dubina, M.

    2015-11-01

    In order to better understand the communication and connectivity development of neuron networks, we designed microfluidic devices with several chambers for growing dissociated neuronal cultures from mice fetal hippocampus (E18). The chambers were connected with microchannels providing unidirectional axonal growth between “Source” and “Target” neural sub-networks. Experiments were performed in a hippocampal cultures plated in a poly-dimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microfluidic chip, aligned with a 60 microelectrode array (MEA). Axonal growth through microchannels was observed with brightfield, phase-contrast and fluorescence microscopy, and after 7 days in vitro electrical activity was recorded. Visual inspection and spike propagation analysis showed the predominant axonal growth in microchannels in a direction from “Source” to “Target”.

  1. Active segmentation of 3D axonal images.

    PubMed

    Muralidhar, Gautam S; Gopinath, Ajay; Bovik, Alan C; Ben-Yakar, Adela

    2012-01-01

    We present an active contour framework for segmenting neuronal axons on 3D confocal microscopy data. Our work is motivated by the need to conduct high throughput experiments involving microfluidic devices and femtosecond lasers to study the genetic mechanisms behind nerve regeneration and repair. While most of the applications for active contours have focused on segmenting closed regions in 2D medical and natural images, there haven't been many applications that have focused on segmenting open-ended curvilinear structures in 2D or higher dimensions. The active contour framework we present here ties together a well known 2D active contour model [5] along with the physics of projection imaging geometry to yield a segmented axon in 3D. Qualitative results illustrate the promise of our approach for segmenting neruonal axons on 3D confocal microscopy data.

  2. Traumatic Axonal Injury: Mechanisms and Translational Opportunities.

    PubMed

    Hill, Ciaran S; Coleman, Michael P; Menon, David K

    2016-05-01

    Traumatic axonal injury (TAI) is an important pathoanatomical subgroup of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and a major driver of mortality and functional impairment. Experimental models have provided insights into the effects of mechanical deformation on the neuronal cytoskeleton and the subsequent processes that drive axonal injury. There is also increasing recognition that axonal or white matter loss may progress for years post-injury and represent one mechanistic framework for progressive neurodegeneration after TBI. Previous trials of novel therapies have failed to make an impact on clinical outcome, in both TBI in general and TAI in particular. Recent advances in understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms of injury have the potential to translate into novel therapeutic targets.

  3. Axon contact-driven Schwann cell dedifferentiation.

    PubMed

    Soto, Jennifer; Monje, Paula V

    2017-02-24

    Mature Schwann cells (SCs) retain dedifferentiation potential throughout adulthood. Still, how dedifferentiation occurs remains uncertain. Results from a variety of cell-based assays using in vitro cultured cAMP-differentiated and myelinating SCs revealed the existence of a novel dedifferentiating activity expressed on the surface of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) axons. This activity had the capacity to prevent SC differentiation and elicit dedifferentiation through direct SC-axon contact. Evidence is provided showing that a rapid loss of myelinating SC markers concomitant to proliferation occurred even in the presence of elevated cAMP, a signal that is required to drive and maintain a differentiated state. The dedifferentiating activity was a membrane-bound protein found exclusively in DRG neurons, as judged by its subcellular partitioning, sensitivity to proteolytic degradation and cell-type specificity, and remained active even after disruption of cellular organization. It differed from the membrane-anchored neuregulin-1 isoforms that are responsible for axon contact-induced SC proliferation and exerted its action independently of mitogenic signaling emanating from receptor tyrosine kinases and mitogen-activated protein kinases such as ERK and JNK. Interestingly, dedifferentiation occurred without concomitant changes in the expression of Krox-20, a transcriptional enhancer of myelination, and c-Jun, an inhibitor of myelination. In sum, our data indicated the existence of cell surface axon-derived signals that override pro-differentiating cues, drive dedifferentiation and allow SCs to proliferate in response to axonal mitogens. This axonal signal may negatively regulate myelination at the onset or reversal of the differentiated state.

  4. Retrograde Axonal Degeneration in Parkinson Disease

    PubMed Central

    Tagliaferro, Patricia; Burke, Robert E.

    2016-01-01

    In spite of tremendous research efforts we have not yet achieved two of our principal therapeutic goals in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease (PD), to prevent its onward progression and to provide restoration of systems that have already been damaged by the time of diagnosis. There are many possible reasons for our inability to make progress. One possibility is that our efforts thus far may not have been directed towards the appropriate cellular compartments. Up until now research has been largely focused on the loss of neurons in the disease. Thus, neuroprotection approaches have been largely aimed at blocking mechanisms that lead to destruction of the neuronal cell body. Attempts to provide neurorestoration have been almost entirely focused on replacement of neurons. We herein review the evidence that the axonal component of diseased neuronal systems merit more of our attention. Evidence from imaging studies, from postmortem neurochemical studies, and from genetic animal models suggests that the axons of the dopaminergic system are involved predominantly and early in PD. Since the mechanisms of axonal destruction are distinct from those of neuron cell body degeneration, a focus on axonal neurobiology will offer new opportunities for preventing their degeneration. At present these mechanisms remain largely obscure. However, defining them is likely to offer new opportunities for neuroprotection. In relation to neurorestoration, while it has been classically believed that neurons of the adult central nervous system are incapable of new axon growth, recent evidence shows that this is not true for the dopaminergic projection. In conclusion, the neurobiology of axons is likely to offer many new approaches to protective and restorative therapeutics. PMID:27003783

  5. Distorted Coarse Axon Targeting and Reduced Dendrite Connectivity Underlie Dysosmia after Olfactory Axon Injury

    PubMed Central

    Iwata, Ryo; Fujimoto, Satoshi; Aihara, Shuhei

    2016-01-01

    The glomerular map in the olfactory bulb (OB) is the basis for odor recognition. Once established during development, the glomerular map is stably maintained throughout the life of an animal despite the continuous turnover of olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs). However, traumatic damage to OSN axons in the adult often leads to dysosmia, a qualitative and quantitative change in olfaction in humans. A mouse model of dysosmia has previously indicated that there is an altered glomerular map in the OB after the OSN axon injury; however, the underlying mechanisms that cause the map distortion remain unknown. In this study, we examined how the glomerular map is disturbed and how the odor information processing in the OB is affected in the dysosmia model mice. We found that the anterior–posterior coarse targeting of OSN axons is disrupted after OSN axon injury, while the local axon sorting mechanisms remained. We also found that the connectivity of mitral/tufted cell dendrites is reduced after injury, leading to attenuated odor responses in mitral/tufted cells. These results suggest that existing OSN axons are an essential scaffold for maintaining the integrity of the olfactory circuit, both OSN axons and mitral/tufted cell dendrites, in the adult. PMID:27785463

  6. Automated Axon Counting in Rodent Optic Nerve Sections with AxonJ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zarei, Kasra; Scheetz, Todd E.; Christopher, Mark; Miller, Kathy; Hedberg-Buenz, Adam; Tandon, Anamika; Anderson, Michael G.; Fingert, John H.; Abràmoff, Michael David

    2016-05-01

    We have developed a publicly available tool, AxonJ, which quantifies the axons in optic nerve sections of rodents stained with paraphenylenediamine (PPD). In this study, we compare AxonJ’s performance to human experts on 100x and 40x images of optic nerve sections obtained from multiple strains of mice, including mice with defects relevant to glaucoma. AxonJ produced reliable axon counts with high sensitivity of 0.959 and high precision of 0.907, high repeatability of 0.95 when compared to a gold-standard of manual assessments and high correlation of 0.882 to the glaucoma damage staging of a previously published dataset. AxonJ allows analyses that are quantitative, consistent, fully-automated, parameter-free, and rapid on whole optic nerve sections at 40x. As a freely available ImageJ plugin that requires no highly specialized equipment to utilize, AxonJ represents a powerful new community resource augmenting studies of the optic nerve using mice.

  7. Automated Axon Counting in Rodent Optic Nerve Sections with AxonJ

    PubMed Central

    Zarei, Kasra; Scheetz, Todd E.; Christopher, Mark; Miller, Kathy; Hedberg-Buenz, Adam; Tandon, Anamika; Anderson, Michael G.; Fingert, John H.; Abràmoff, Michael David

    2016-01-01

    We have developed a publicly available tool, AxonJ, which quantifies the axons in optic nerve sections of rodents stained with paraphenylenediamine (PPD). In this study, we compare AxonJ’s performance to human experts on 100x and 40x images of optic nerve sections obtained from multiple strains of mice, including mice with defects relevant to glaucoma. AxonJ produced reliable axon counts with high sensitivity of 0.959 and high precision of 0.907, high repeatability of 0.95 when compared to a gold-standard of manual assessments and high correlation of 0.882 to the glaucoma damage staging of a previously published dataset. AxonJ allows analyses that are quantitative, consistent, fully-automated, parameter-free, and rapid on whole optic nerve sections at 40x. As a freely available ImageJ plugin that requires no highly specialized equipment to utilize, AxonJ represents a powerful new community resource augmenting studies of the optic nerve using mice. PMID:27226405

  8. Diverse Modes of Axon Elaboration in the Developing Neocortex

    PubMed Central

    Weimer, Robby M; De Paola, Vincenzo; Caroni, Pico; Svoboda, Karel

    2005-01-01

    The development of axonal arbors is a critical step in the establishment of precise neural circuits, but relatively little is known about the mechanisms of axonal elaboration in the neocortex. We used in vivo two-photon time-lapse microscopy to image axons in the neocortex of green fluorescent protein-transgenic mice over the first 3 wk of postnatal development. This period spans the elaboration of thalamocortical (TC) and Cajal-Retzius (CR) axons and cortical synaptogenesis. Layer 1 collaterals of TC and CR axons were imaged repeatedly over time scales ranging from minutes up to days, and their growth and pruning were analyzed. The structure and dynamics of TC and CR axons differed profoundly. Branches of TC axons terminated in small, bulbous growth cones, while CR axon branch tips had large growth cones with numerous long filopodia. TC axons grew rapidly in straight paths, with frequent interstitial branch additions, while CR axons grew more slowly along tortuous paths. For both types of axon, new branches appeared at interstitial sites along the axon shaft and did not involve growth cone splitting. Pruning occurred via retraction of small axon branches (tens of microns, at both CR and TC axons) or degeneration of large portions of the arbor (hundreds of microns, for TC axons only). The balance between growth and retraction favored overall growth, but only by a slight margin. Given the identical layer 1 territory upon which CR and TC axons grow, the differences in their structure and dynamics likely reflect distinct intrinsic growth programs for axons of long projection neurons versus local interneurons. PMID:16026180

  9. Neural Progenitor Cells Promote Axonal Growth and Alter Axonal mRNA Localization in Adult Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Merianda, Tanuja T.; Jin, Ying

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The inhibitory environment of the spinal cord and the intrinsic properties of neurons prevent regeneration of axons following CNS injury. However, both ascending and descending axons of the injured spinal cord have been shown to regenerate into grafts of embryonic neural progenitor cells (NPCs). Previous studies have shown that grafts composed of glial-restricted progenitors (GRPs) and neural-restricted progenitors (NRPs) can provide a permissive microenvironment for axon growth. We have used cocultures of adult rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons together with NPCs, which have shown significant enhancement of axon growth by embryonic rat GRP and GRPs/NRPs, both in coculture conditions and when DRGs are exposed to conditioned medium from the NPC cultures. This growth-promoting effect of NPC-conditioned medium was also seen in injury-conditioned neurons. DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs showed altered expression of regeneration-associated genes at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. We found that levels of GAP-43 mRNA increased in DRG cell bodies and axons. However, hepcidin antimicrobial peptide (HAMP) mRNA decreased in the cell bodies of DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs, which is distinct from the increase in cell body HAMP mRNA levels seen in DRGs after injury conditioning. Endogenous GAP-43 and β-actin mRNAs as well as reporter RNAs carrying axonally localizing 3'UTRs of these transcripts showed significantly increased levels in distal axons in the DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs. These results indicate that axon growth promoted by NPCs is associated not only with enhanced transcription of growth-associated genes but also can increase localization of some mRNAs into growing axons. PMID:28197547

  10. Rabies virus envelope glycoprotein targets lentiviral vectors to the axonal retrograde pathway in motor neurons.

    PubMed

    Hislop, James N; Islam, Tarin A; Eleftheriadou, Ioanna; Carpentier, David C J; Trabalza, Antonio; Parkinson, Michael; Schiavo, Giampietro; Mazarakis, Nicholas D

    2014-06-06

    Rabies pseudotyped lentiviral vectors have great potential in gene therapy, not least because of their ability to transduce neurons following their distal axonal application. However, very little is known about the molecular processes that underlie their retrograde transport and cell transduction. Using multiple labeling techniques and confocal microscopy, we demonstrated that pseudotyping with rabies virus envelope glycoprotein (RV-G) enabled the axonal retrograde transport of two distinct subtypes of lentiviral vector in motor neuron cultures. Analysis of this process revealed that these vectors trafficked through Rab5-positive endosomes and accumulated within a non-acidic Rab7 compartment. RV-G pseudotyped vectors were co-transported with both the tetanus neurotoxin-binding fragment and the membrane proteins thought to mediate rabies virus endocytosis (neural cell adhesion molecule, nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, and p75 neurotrophin receptor), thus demonstrating that pseudotyping with RV-G targets lentiviral vectors for transport along the same pathway exploited by several toxins and viruses. Using motor neurons cultured in compartmentalized chambers, we demonstrated that axonal retrograde transport of these vectors was rapid and efficient; however, it was not able to transduce the targeted neurons efficiently, suggesting that impairment in processes occurring after arrival of the viral vector in the soma is responsible for the low transduction efficiency seen in vivo, which suggests a novel area for improvement of gene therapy vectors.

  11. The axon as a unique computational unit in neurons.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Takuya

    2013-02-01

    In the mammalian cortex, axons are highly ramified and link an enormous number of neurons over large distances. The conventional view assumes that action potentials (APs) are initiated at the axon initial segment in an all-or-none fashion and are then self-propagated orthodromically along axon collaterals without distortion of the AP waveform. By contrast, recent experimental results suggest that the axonal AP waveform can be modified depending on the activation states of the ion channels and receptors on axonal cell membranes. This AP modulation can regulate neurotransmission to postsynaptic neurons. In addition, the latest studies have provided evidence that cortical axons can integrate somatic burst firings and promote activity-dependent ectopic AP generation, which may underlie the oscillogenesis of fast rhythmic network activity. These seminal observations indicate that axons can perform diverse functional operations that extend beyond the prevailing model of axon physiology.

  12. A high affinity RIM-binding protein/Aplip1 interaction prevents the formation of ectopic axonal active zones

    PubMed Central

    Siebert, Matthias; Böhme, Mathias A; Driller, Jan H; Babikir, Husam; Mampell, Malou M; Rey, Ulises; Ramesh, Niraja; Matkovic, Tanja; Holton, Nicole; Reddy-Alla, Suneel; Göttfert, Fabian; Kamin, Dirk; Quentin, Christine; Klinedinst, Susan; Andlauer, Till FM; Hell, Stefan W; Collins, Catherine A; Wahl, Markus C; Loll, Bernhard; Sigrist, Stephan J

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic vesicles (SVs) fuse at active zones (AZs) covered by a protein scaffold, at Drosophila synapses comprised of ELKS family member Bruchpilot (BRP) and RIM-binding protein (RBP). We here demonstrate axonal co-transport of BRP and RBP using intravital live imaging, with both proteins co-accumulating in axonal aggregates of several transport mutants. RBP, via its C-terminal Src-homology 3 (SH3) domains, binds Aplip1/JIP1, a transport adaptor involved in kinesin-dependent SV transport. We show in atomic detail that RBP C-terminal SH3 domains bind a proline-rich (PxxP) motif of Aplip1/JIP1 with submicromolar affinity. Pointmutating this PxxP motif provoked formation of ectopic AZ-like structures at axonal membranes. Direct interactions between AZ proteins and transport adaptors seem to provide complex avidity and shield synaptic interaction surfaces of pre-assembled scaffold protein transport complexes, thus, favouring physiological synaptic AZ assembly over premature assembly at axonal membranes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06935.001 PMID:26274777

  13. Cell-to-cell transfer of glial proteins to the squid giant axon: The glia- neuron protein transfer hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Lasek, RJ; Gainer, H; Barker, JL

    1977-01-01

    The hypothesis that glial cells synthesize proteins which are transferred to adjacent neurons was evaluated in the giant fiber of the squid (Loligo pealei). When giant fibers are separated from their neuron cell bodies and incubated in the presence of radioactive amino acids, labeled proteins appear in the glial cells and axoplasm. Labeled axonal proteins were detected by three methods: extrusion of the axoplasm from the giant fiber, autoradiography, and perfusion of the giant fiber. This protein synthesis is completely inhibited by puromycin but is not affected by chloramphenicol. The following evidence indicates that the labeled axonal proteins are not synthesized within the axon itself. (a) The axon does not contain a significant amount of ribosomes or ribosomal RNA. (b) Isolated axoplasm did not incorporate [(3)H]leucine into proteins. (c) Injection of Rnase into the giant axon did not reduce the appearance of newly synthesized proteins in the axoplasm of the giant fiber. These findings, coupled with other evidence, have led us to conclude that the adaxonal glial cells synthesize a class of proteins which are transferred to the giant axon. Analysis of the kinetics of this phenomenon indicates that some proteins are transferred to the axon within minutes of their synthesis in the glial cells. One or more of the steps in the transfer process appear to involve Ca++, since replacement of extracellular Ca++ by either Mg++ or Co++ significantly reduces the appearance of labeled proteins in the axon. A substantial fraction of newly synthesized glial proteins, possibly as much as 40 percent, are transferred to the giant axon. These proteins are heterogeneous and range in size from 12,000 to greater than 200,000 daltons. Comparisons of the amount of amino acid incorporation in glia cells and neuron cell bodies raise the possibility that the adaxonal glial cells may provide an important source of axonal proteins which is supplemental to that provided by axonal transport

  14. Spatial temperature gradients guide axonal outgrowth

    PubMed Central

    Black, Bryan; Vishwakarma, Vivek; Dhakal, Kamal; Bhattarai, Samik; Pradhan, Prabhakar; Jain, Ankur; Kim, Young-tae; Mohanty, Samarendra

    2016-01-01

    Formation of neural networks during development and regeneration after injury depends on accuracy of axonal pathfinding, which is primarily believed to be influenced by chemical cues. Recently, there is growing evidence that physical cues can play crucial role in axonal guidance. However, detailed mechanism involved in such guidance cues is lacking. By using weakly-focused near-infrared continuous wave (CW) laser microbeam in the path of an advancing axon, we discovered that the beam acts as a repulsive guidance cue. Here, we report that this highly-effective at-a-distance guidance is the result of a temperature field produced by the near-infrared laser light absorption. Since light absorption by extracellular medium increases when the laser wavelength was red shifted, the threshold laser power for reliable guidance was significantly lower in the near-infrared as compared to the visible spectrum. The spatial temperature gradient caused by the near-infrared laser beam at-a-distance was found to activate temperature-sensitive membrane receptors, resulting in an influx of calcium. The repulsive guidance effect was significantly reduced when extracellular calcium was depleted or in the presence of TRPV1-antagonist. Further, direct heating using micro-heater confirmed that the axonal guidance is caused by shallow temperature-gradient, eliminating the role of any non-photothermal effects. PMID:27460512

  15. Spatial temperature gradients guide axonal outgrowth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Black, Bryan; Vishwakarma, Vivek; Dhakal, Kamal; Bhattarai, Samik; Pradhan, Prabhakar; Jain, Ankur; Kim, Young-Tae; Mohanty, Samarendra

    2016-07-01

    Formation of neural networks during development and regeneration after injury depends on accuracy of axonal pathfinding, which is primarily believed to be influenced by chemical cues. Recently, there is growing evidence that physical cues can play crucial role in axonal guidance. However, detailed mechanism involved in such guidance cues is lacking. By using weakly-focused near-infrared continuous wave (CW) laser microbeam in the path of an advancing axon, we discovered that the beam acts as a repulsive guidance cue. Here, we report that this highly-effective at-a-distance guidance is the result of a temperature field produced by the near-infrared laser light absorption. Since light absorption by extracellular medium increases when the laser wavelength was red shifted, the threshold laser power for reliable guidance was significantly lower in the near-infrared as compared to the visible spectrum. The spatial temperature gradient caused by the near-infrared laser beam at-a-distance was found to activate temperature-sensitive membrane receptors, resulting in an influx of calcium. The repulsive guidance effect was significantly reduced when extracellular calcium was depleted or in the presence of TRPV1-antagonist. Further, direct heating using micro-heater confirmed that the axonal guidance is caused by shallow temperature-gradient, eliminating the role of any non-photothermal effects.

  16. Mechanosensitivity in axon growth and guidance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urbach, Jeff

    2013-03-01

    In the developing nervous system, axons respond to a diverse array of cues to generate the intricate connection network required for proper function. The growth cone, a highly motile structure at the tip of a growing axon, integrates information about the local environment and modulates outgrowth and guidance, but little is known about effects of external mechanical cues and internal mechanical forces on growth cone behavior. We have investigated axon outgrowth and force generation on soft elastic substrates for dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons (from the peripheral nervous system) and hippocampal neurons (from the central) to see how the mechanics of the microenvironment affect different populations. We find that force generation and stiffness-dependent outgrowth are strongly dependent on cell type. We also observe very different internal dynamics and substrate coupling in the two populations, suggesting that the difference in force generation is due to stronger adhesions and therefore stronger substrate engagement in the peripheral nervous system neurons. We will discuss the biological origins of these differences, and recent analyses of the dynamic aspects of growth cone force generation and the implications for the role of mechanosensitivity in axon guidance. In collaboration with D. Koch, W. Rosoff, and H. M. Geller. Supported by NINDS grant 1R01NS064250-01 (J.S.U.) and the NHLBI Intramural Research Program (H.M.G.).

  17. Modeling molecular mechanisms in the axon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Rooij, R.; Miller, K. E.; Kuhl, E.

    2016-12-01

    Axons are living systems that display highly dynamic changes in stiffness, viscosity, and internal stress. However, the mechanistic origin of these phenomenological properties remains elusive. Here we establish a computational mechanics model that interprets cellular-level characteristics as emergent properties from molecular-level events. We create an axon model of discrete microtubules, which are connected to neighboring microtubules via discrete crosslinking mechanisms that obey a set of simple rules. We explore two types of mechanisms: passive and active crosslinking. Our passive and active simulations suggest that the stiffness and viscosity of the axon increase linearly with the crosslink density, and that both are highly sensitive to the crosslink detachment and reattachment times. Our model explains how active crosslinking with dynein motors generates internal stresses and actively drives axon elongation. We anticipate that our model will allow us to probe a wide variety of molecular phenomena—both in isolation and in interaction—to explore emergent cellular-level features under physiological and pathological conditions.

  18. Modeling molecular mechanisms in the axon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Rooij, R.; Miller, K. E.; Kuhl, E.

    2017-03-01

    Axons are living systems that display highly dynamic changes in stiffness, viscosity, and internal stress. However, the mechanistic origin of these phenomenological properties remains elusive. Here we establish a computational mechanics model that interprets cellular-level characteristics as emergent properties from molecular-level events. We create an axon model of discrete microtubules, which are connected to neighboring microtubules via discrete crosslinking mechanisms that obey a set of simple rules. We explore two types of mechanisms: passive and active crosslinking. Our passive and active simulations suggest that the stiffness and viscosity of the axon increase linearly with the crosslink density, and that both are highly sensitive to the crosslink detachment and reattachment times. Our model explains how active crosslinking with dynein motors generates internal stresses and actively drives axon elongation. We anticipate that our model will allow us to probe a wide variety of molecular phenomena—both in isolation and in interaction—to explore emergent cellular-level features under physiological and pathological conditions.

  19. Critical role of axonal A-type K+ channels and axonal geometry in the gating of action potential propagation along CA3 pyramidal cell axons: a simulation study.

    PubMed

    Kopysova, I L; Debanne, D

    1998-09-15

    A model of CA3 pyramidal cell axons was used to study a new mode of gating of action potential (AP) propagation along the axon that depends on the activation of A-type K+ current (Debanne et al., 1997). The axonal membrane contained voltage-dependent Na+ channels, K+ channels, and A-type K+ channels. The density of axonal A-channels was first determined so that (1) at the resting membrane potential an AP elicited by a somatic depolarization was propagated into all axon collaterals and (2) propagation failures occurred when a brief somatic hyperpolarization preceded the AP induction. Both conditions were fulfilled only when A-channels were distributed in clusters but not when they were homogeneously distributed along the axon. Failure occurs in the proximal part of the axon. Conduction failure could be determined by a single cluster of A-channels, local decrease of axon diameter, or axonal elongation. We estimated the amplitude and temporal parameters of the hyperpolarization required for induction of a conduction block. Transient and small somatic hyperpolarizations, such as simulated GABAA inhibitory postsynaptic potentials, were able to block the AP propagation. It was shown that AP induction had to occur with a short delay (<30 msec) after the hyperpolarization. We discuss the possible conditions in which such local variations of the axon geometry and A-channel density may occur and the incidence of AP propagation failures on hippocampal network properties.

  20. Spatiotemporal gradients of intra-axonal [Na+] after transection and resealing in lizard peripheral myelinated axons.

    PubMed Central

    David, G; Barrett, J N; Barrett, E F

    1997-01-01

    1. Post-transection changes in intracellular Na+ ([Na+]i) were measured in lizard peripheral axons ionophoretically injected with the Na(+)-sensitive ratiometric dye, sodium-binding benzofuran isophthalate (SBFI). 2. Following axonal transection in physiological saline [Na+]i increased to more than 100 mM in a region that quickly extended hundreds of micrometers from the transection site. This post-transection increase in [Na+]i was similar when the bath contained 5 microM tetrodotoxin, but was absent in Na(+)-free solution. Depolarization of uncut axons in 50 mM K+ produced little or no elevation of [Na+]i until veratridine was added. These results suggest that the post-transection increase in [Na+]i was due mainly to Na+ entry via the cut end, rather than via depolarization-activated Na+ channels. 3. The spatiotemporal profile of the post-transection increase in [Na+]i could be accounted for by movement of Na+ from the cut end with an apparent diffusion coefficient of 1.3 x 10(-5) cm2 s-1. 4. [Na+]i began to decline toward resting levels by 20 +/- 15 min (mean +/- S.D.) post-transection, except in regions of the axon within 160 +/- 85 microns of the transection site, where [Na+]i remained high. The boundary between axonal regions in which [Na+]i did or did not recover probably defines a locus of resealing of the axonal membrane. 5. [Na+]i returned to resting values within about 1 h after resealing, even in axonal regions where the normal transmembrane [Na+] gradient had completely dissipated. The recovery of [Na+]i was faster and reached lower levels than expected by diffusional redistribution of Na+ along the axon. Partial recovery occurred even in an isolated internode, indicating that the internodal axolemma can actively extrude Na+. Images Figure 2 Figure 4 Figure 6 PMID:9032679

  1. MAPK signaling promotes axonal degeneration by speeding the turnover of the axonal maintenance factor NMNAT2

    PubMed Central

    Walker, Lauren J; Summers, Daniel W; Sasaki, Yo; Brace, EJ; Milbrandt, Jeffrey; DiAntonio, Aaron

    2017-01-01

    Injury-induced (Wallerian) axonal degeneration is regulated via the opposing actions of pro-degenerative factors such as SARM1 and a MAPK signal and pro-survival factors, the most important of which is the NAD+ biosynthetic enzyme NMNAT2 that inhibits activation of the SARM1 pathway. Here we investigate the mechanism by which MAPK signaling facilitates axonal degeneration. We show that MAPK signaling promotes the turnover of the axonal survival factor NMNAT2 in cultured mammalian neurons as well as the Drosophila ortholog dNMNAT in motoneurons. The increased levels of NMNAT2 are required for the axonal protection caused by loss of MAPK signaling. Regulation of NMNAT2 by MAPK signaling does not require SARM1, and so cannot be downstream of SARM1. Hence, pro-degenerative MAPK signaling functions upstream of SARM1 by limiting the levels of the essential axonal survival factor NMNAT2 to promote injury-dependent SARM1 activation. These findings are consistent with a linear molecular pathway for the axonal degeneration program. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22540.001 PMID:28095293

  2. Axonal Terminals Exposed to Amyloid-β May Not Lead to Pre-Synaptic Axonal Damage

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Shu-Wei; Nishioka, Christopher; Labib, Wessam; Liang, Hsiao-Fang

    2015-01-01

    Background Synaptic deficits and neuronal loss are the major pathological manifestations of Alzheimer’s disease. However, the link between the early synaptic loss and subsequent neurodegeneration is not entirely clear. Cell culture studies have shown that amyloid-β (Aβ) applied to axonal terminals can cause retrograde degeneration leading to the neuronal loss, but this process has not been demonstrated in live animals. Objective To test if Aβ applied to retinal ganglion cell axonal terminals can induce axonal damage in the optic nerve and optic tract in mice. Methods Aβ was injected into the terminal field of the optic tract, in the left lateral geniculate nucleus of wildtype C57BL/6 mice. Following the injection, monthly diffusion tensor imaging was performed. Three months after the injection, mice underwent visual evoked potential recordings, and then sacrificed for immunohistochemical examination. Results There were no significant changes seen with diffusion tensor imaging in the optic nerve and optic tract 3 months after the Aβ injection. The myelin and axons in these regions remained intact according to immunohistochemistry. The only significant changes observed in this study were delayed transduction and reduced amplitude of visual evoked potentials, although both Aβ and its reversed form caused similar changes. Conclusion Despite the published in vitro studies, there was no significant axonal damage in the optic nerve and optic tract after injecting Aβ onto retinal ganglion cell axonal terminals of wildtype C57BL/6 mice. PMID:25697704

  3. Tar DNA-binding protein-43 (TDP-43) regulates axon growth in vitro and in vivo☆

    PubMed Central

    Tripathi, Vineeta Bhasker; Baskaran, Pranetha; Shaw, Christopher E.; Guthrie, Sarah

    2014-01-01

    Intracellular inclusions of the TAR-DNA binding protein 43 (TDP-43) have been reported in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD-TDP). Rare mutations in TARDBP have been linked to both ALS and FTD-TDP suggesting that TDP-43 dysfunction is mechanistic in causing disease. TDP-43 is a predominantly nuclear protein with roles in regulating RNA transcription, splicing, stability and transport. In ALS, TDP-43 aberrantly accumulates in the cytoplasm of motor neurons where it forms aggregates. However it has until recently been unclear whether the toxic effects of TDP-43 involve recruitment to motor axons, and what effects this might have on axonal growth and integrity. Here we use chick embryonic motor neurons, in vivo and in vitro, to model the acute effects of TDP-43. We show that wild-type and two TDP-43 mutant proteins cause toxicity in chick embryonic motor neurons in vivo. Moreover, TDP-43 is increasingly mislocalised to axons over time in vivo, axon growth to peripheral targets is truncated, and expression of neurofilament-associated antigen is reduced relative to control motor neurons. In primary spinal motor neurons in vitro, a progressive translocation of TDP-43 to the cytoplasm occurs over time, similar to that observed in vivo. This coincides with the appearance of cytoplasmic aggregates, a reduction in the axonal length, and cellular toxicity, which was most striking for neurons expressing TDP-43 mutant forms. These observations suggest that the capacity of spinal motor neurons to produce and maintain an axon is compromised by dysregulation of TDP-43 and that the disruption of cytoskeletal integrity may play a role in the pathogenesis of ALS and FTD-TDP. PMID:24423647

  4. Noise and Speech Interference: Proceedings of Minisymposium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shepherd, W. T. (Editor)

    1975-01-01

    Several papers are presented which deal with the psychophysical effects of interference with speech and listening activities by different forms of noise masking and filtering. Special attention was given to the annoyance such interruptions cause, particularly that due to aircraft flyover noises. Activities such as telephone listening and television watching were studied. A number of experimental investigations are described and the results are analyzed.

  5. Acceleration of axonal outgrowth in rat sciatic nerve at one week after axotomy.

    PubMed

    Jacob, J M; McQuarrie, I G

    1993-03-01

    Following injury of sciatic motor axons in the rat, the rate of axonal outgrowth is faster if there has been a prior "conditioning" axotomy. The acceleration of outgrowth is due to an acceleration of SCb, the rate [slow (SC)] component of axonal transport that carries cytomatrix proteins; this occurs throughout the axon by 7 days after the conditioning axotomy (Jacob and McQuarrie, 1991a, J. Neurobiol. 22:570-583). To further characterize the conditioning lesion effect (CLE), it is important to know (1) the minimum effective conditioning interval (time between conditioning and testing lesions), (2) whether the cell body reaction is required, and (3) whether outgrowth accelerates after a single axotomy. Outgrowth distances were measured by radiolabeling all newly synthesized neuronal proteins and detecting those carried to growth cones by fast axonal transport. When the conditioning and testing lesions were made simultaneously (0 day conditioning interval), there was no CLE. With a conditioning interval of 3 days, there was a shortening of the initial delay (before the onset of outgrowth) without a change in outgrowth rate. With conditioning intervals of 7, 14, and 21 days, the rates of outgrowth were increased by 8%, 22%, and 11%, respectively. To determine whether the cell body reaction to axotomy is necessary for the CLE, a nonaxotomizing stimulus to axonal growth (partial denervation) was used in place of a conditioning axotomy. This had no effect on the rate of outgrowth from a testing lesion made 14 days later. Finally, we examined the possibility that outgrowth accelerates after a single lesion. Outgrowth was faster at 6-9 days after axotomy than at 3-6 days (p < 0.001), and accelerated further at 9-12 days (p < 0.001). We conclude that (1) the shortest effective conditioning interval is 3 days; (2) the cell body reaction is necessary for the CLE; (3) axonal outgrowth from a single axotomy accelerates in concert with the anabolic phase of the cell body

  6. AxonQuant: A Microfluidic Chamber Culture-Coupled Algorithm That Allows High-Throughput Quantification of Axonal Damage

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yang; Yang, Mengxue; Huang, Zhuo; Chen, Xiaoping; Maloney, Michael T.; Zhu, Li; Liu, Jianghong; Yang, Yanmin; Du, Sidan; Jiang, Xingyu; Wu, Jane Y.

    2014-01-01

    Published methods for imaging and quantitatively analyzing morphological changes in neuronal axons have serious limitations because of their small sample sizes, and their time-consuming and nonobjective nature. Here we present an improved microfluidic chamber design suitable for fast and high-throughput imaging of neuronal axons. We developed the Axon-Quant algorithm, which is suitable for automatic processing of axonal imaging data. This microfluidic chamber-coupled algorithm allows calculation of an ‘axonal continuity index’ that quantitatively measures axonal health status in a manner independent of neuronal or axonal density. This method allows quantitative analysis of axonal morphology in an automatic and nonbiased manner. Our method will facilitate large-scale high-throughput screening for genes or therapeutic compounds for neurodegenerative diseases involving axonal damage. When combined with imaging technologies utilizing different gene markers, this method will provide new insights into the mechanistic basis for axon degeneration. Our microfluidic chamber culture-coupled AxonQuant algorithm will be widely useful for studying axonal biology and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:24603552

  7. Axonopathy and Transport Deficits Early in the Pathogenesis of Alzheimer's Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stokin, Gorazd B.; Lillo, Concepción; Falzone, Tomás L.; Brusch, Richard G.; Rockenstein, Edward; Mount, Stephanie L.; Raman, Rema; Davies, Peter; Masliah, Eliezer; Williams, David S.; Goldstein, Lawrence S. B.

    2005-02-01

    We identified axonal defects in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease that preceded known disease-related pathology by more than a year; we observed similar axonal defects in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease in humans. Axonal defects consisted of swellings that accumulated abnormal amounts of microtubule-associated and molecular motor proteins, organelles, and vesicles. Impairing axonal transport by reducing the dosage of a kinesin molecular motor protein enhanced the frequency of axonal defects and increased amyloid-β peptide levels and amyloid deposition. Reductions in microtubule-dependent transport may stimulate proteolytic processing of β-amyloid precursor protein, resulting in the development of senile plaques and Alzheimer's disease.

  8. Preserve and protect: maintaining axons within functional circuits.

    PubMed

    Pease, Sarah E; Segal, Rosalind A

    2014-10-01

    During development, neural circuits are initially generated by exuberant innervation and are rapidly refined by selective preservation and elimination of axons. The establishment and maintenance of functional circuits therefore requires coordination of axon survival and degeneration pathways. Both developing and mature circuits rely on interdependent mitochondrial and cytoskeletal components to maintain axonal health and homeostasis; injury or diseases that impinge on these components frequently cause pathologic axon loss. Here, we review recent findings that identify mechanisms of axonal preservation in the contexts of development, injury, and disease.

  9. astray, a zebrafish roundabout homolog required for retinal axon guidance.

    PubMed

    Fricke, C; Lee, J S; Geiger-Rudolph, S; Bonhoeffer, F; Chien, C B

    2001-04-20

    As growing retinotectal axons navigate from the eye to the tectum, they sense guidance molecules distributed along the optic pathway. Mutations in the zebrafish astray gene severely disrupt retinal axon guidance, causing anterior-posterior pathfinding defects, excessive midline crossing, and defasciculation of the retinal projection. Eye transplantation experiments show that astray function is required in the eye. We identify astray as zebrafish robo2, a member of the Roundabout family of axon guidance receptors. Retinal ganglion cells express robo2 as they extend axons. Thus, robo2 is required for multiple axon guidance decisions during establishment of the vertebrate visual projection.

  10. Preserve and protect: maintaining axons within functional circuits

    PubMed Central

    Pease, Sarah E.; Segal, Rosalind A.

    2014-01-01

    During development, neural circuits are initially generated by exuberant innervation and are rapidly refined by selective preservation and elimination of axons. The establishment and maintenance of functional circuits therefore requires coordination of axon survival and degeneration pathways. Both developing and mature circuits rely on interdependent mitochondrial and cytoskeletal components to maintain axonal health and homeostasis; injury or diseases that impinge on these components frequently cause pathologic axon loss. Here, we review recent findings that identify mechanisms of axonal preservation in the contexts of development, injury, and disease. PMID:25167775

  11. The kinesin-2 family member KIF3C regulates microtubule dynamics and is required for axon growth and regeneration.

    PubMed

    Gumy, Laura F; Chew, Daniel J; Tortosa, Elena; Katrukha, Eugene A; Kapitein, Lukas C; Tolkovsky, Aviva M; Hoogenraad, Casper C; Fawcett, James W

    2013-07-10

    Axon regeneration after injury requires the extensive reconstruction, reorganization, and stabilization of the microtubule cytoskeleton in the growth cones. Here, we identify KIF3C as a key regulator of axonal growth and regeneration by controlling microtubule dynamics and organization in the growth cone. KIF3C is developmentally regulated. Rat embryonic sensory axons and growth cones contain undetectable levels of KIF3C protein that is locally translated immediately after injury. In adult neurons, KIF3C is axonally transported from the cell body and is enriched at the growth cone where it preferentially binds to tyrosinated microtubules. Functionally, the interaction of KIF3C with EB3 is necessary for its localization at the microtubule plus-ends in the growth cone. Depletion of KIF3C in adult neurons leads to an increase in stable, overgrown and looped microtubules because of a strong decrease in the microtubule frequency of catastrophes, suggesting that KIF3C functions as a microtubule-destabilizing factor. Adult axons lacking KIF3C, by RNA interference or KIF3C gene knock-out, display an impaired axonal outgrowth in vitro and a delayed regeneration after injury both in vitro and in vivo. Murine KIF3C knock-out embryonic axons grow normally but do not regenerate after injury because they are unable to locally translate KIF3C. These data show that KIF3C is an injury-specific kinesin that contributes to axon growth and regeneration by regulating and organizing the microtubule cytoskeleton in the growth cone.

  12. Two Modes of the Axonal Interferon Response Limit Alphaherpesvirus Neuroinvasion

    PubMed Central

    Song, Ren; Koyuncu, Orkide O.; Greco, Todd M.; Diner, Benjamin A.; Cristea, Ileana M.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Infection by alphaherpesviruses, including herpes simplex virus (HSV) and pseudorabies virus (PRV), typically begins at epithelial surfaces and continues into the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Inflammatory responses are induced at the infected peripheral site prior to invasion of the PNS. When the peripheral tissue is first infected, only the innervating axons are exposed to this inflammatory milieu, which includes the interferons (IFNs). The fundamental question is how do PNS cell bodies respond to these distant, potentially damaging events experienced by axons. Using compartmented cultures that physically separate neuron axons from cell bodies, we found that pretreating isolated axons with beta interferon (IFN-β) or gamma interferon (IFN-γ) significantly diminished the number of herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) and PRV particles moving in axons toward the cell bodies in a receptor-dependent manner. Exposing axons to IFN-β induced STAT1 phosphorylation (p-STAT1) only in axons, while exposure of axons to IFN-γ induced p-STAT1 accumulation in distant cell body nuclei. Blocking transcription in cell bodies eliminated antiviral effects induced by IFN-γ, but not those induced by IFN-β. Proteomic analysis of IFN-β- or IFN-γ-treated axons identified several differentially regulated proteins. Therefore, unlike treatment with IFN-γ, IFN-β induces a noncanonical, local antiviral response in axons. The activation of a local IFN response in axons represents a new paradigm for cytokine control of neuroinvasion. PMID:26838720

  13. The Emerging Role of Forces in Axonal Elongation

    PubMed Central

    Suter, Daniel M.; Miller, Kyle E.

    2011-01-01

    An understanding of how axons elongate is needed to develop rational strategies to treat neurological diseases and nerve injury. Growth cone-mediated neuronal elongation is currently viewed as occurring through cytoskeletal dynamics involving the polymerization of actin and tubulin subunits at the tip of the axon. However, recent work suggests that axons and growth cones also generate forces (through cytoskeletal dynamics, kinesin, dynein, and myosin), forces induce axonal elongation, and axons lengthen by stretching. This review highlights results from various model systems (Drosophila, Aplysia, Xenopus, chicken, mouse, rat, and PC12 cells), supporting a role for forces, bulk microtubule movements, and intercalated mass addition in the process of axonal elongation. We think that a satisfying answer to the question, “How do axons grow?” will come by integrating the best aspects of biophysics, genetics, and cell biology. PMID:21527310

  14. Motor axon synapses on renshaw cells contain higher levels of aspartate than glutamate.

    PubMed

    Richards, Dannette S; Griffith, Ronald W; Romer, Shannon H; Alvarez, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    Motoneuron synapses on spinal cord interneurons known as Renshaw cells activate nicotinic, AMPA and NMDA receptors consistent with co-release of acetylcholine and excitatory amino acids (EAA). However, whether these synapses express vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUTs) capable of accumulating glutamate into synaptic vesicles is controversial. An alternative possibility is that these synapses release other EAAs, like aspartate, not dependent on VGLUTs. To clarify the exact EAA concentrated at motor axon synapses we performed a quantitative postembedding colloidal gold immunoelectron analysis for aspartate and glutamate on motor axon synapses (identified by immunoreactivity to the vesicular acetylcholine transporter; VAChT) contacting calbindin-immunoreactive (-IR) Renshaw cell dendrites. The results show that 71% to 80% of motor axon synaptic boutons on Renshaw cells contained aspartate immunolabeling two standard deviations above average neuropil labeling. Moreover, VAChT-IR synapses on Renshaw cells contained, on average, aspartate immunolabeling at 2.5 to 2.8 times above the average neuropil level. In contrast, glutamate enrichment was lower; 21% to 44% of VAChT-IR synapses showed glutamate-IR two standard deviations above average neuropil labeling and average glutamate immunogold density was 1.7 to 2.0 times the neuropil level. The results were not influenced by antibody affinities because glutamate antibodies detected glutamate-enriched brain homogenates more efficiently than aspartate antibodies detecting aspartate-enriched brain homogenates. Furthermore, synaptic boutons with ultrastructural features of Type I excitatory synapses were always labeled by glutamate antibodies at higher density than motor axon synapses. We conclude that motor axon synapses co-express aspartate and glutamate, but aspartate is concentrated at higher levels than glutamate.

  15. Axonal and vascular changes following injury to the rat's optic nerve.

    PubMed Central

    Kiernan, J A

    1985-01-01

    The optic nerve of the rat has been examined by light and electron microscopy, and also for vascular permeability to fluorescently labelled albumin, 2 days to 34 weeks after crushing in the orbit. The operation was usually followed by loss of 20-70% of the retinal ganglion cells. Axons could be followed from the retina into the optic nerve at all postoperative times, but they always ended anterior to the lesion. Evidence of feeble regenerative growth of optic axons was seen in the first few postoperative weeks: bifurcating fibres and fibres that turned back towards the eye were present within the optic nerve anterior to the lesion. At the site of crushing, the optic nerve eventually became a thin cord of astroglia, surrounded and partly infiltrated by collagenous connective tissue. Long argyrophilic fibres were conspicuous in the intracranial part of the crushed optic nerve from the seventh to the fourteenth postoperative week. These were shown by electron microscopy to be degenerating myelinated axons that had not been phagocytosed. It was conceivable that axons from the contralateral retina could have sprouted at the chiasma and grown into the degenerated optic nerve. This possibility was excluded by tracing anterograde axonal transport of horseradish peroxidase injected into the contralateral eye. Intravenously injected fluorescent protein entered the connective tissue of the orbit and the connective tissue trabeculae of the optic nerve, but it did not permeate into the central nervous tissue except at the lamina cribrosa, where the optic axons pierce the sclera. Permeability at this site was the same on the operated and unoperated sides. Abnormal permeability of the vasculature was seen at the site of crushing the optic nerve. Fluorescence there was strongest in the first two postoperative weeks and was not seen after the third week. A much less conspicuous defect of barrier function occurred in the intracranial portion of the crushed optic nerve, from the

  16. Dysregulation of the Axonal Trafficking of Nuclear-encoded Mitochondrial mRNA alters Neuronal Mitochondrial Activity and Mouse Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Kar, Amar N.; Sun, Ching-Yu; Reichard, Kathryn; Gervasi, Noreen M.; Pickel, James; Nakazawa, Kazu; Gioio, Anthony E.; Kaplan, Barry B.

    2014-01-01

    Local translation of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial mRNAs is essential for mitochondrial activity, yet there is little insight into the role that axonal trafficking of these transcripts play in neuronal function and behavior. Previously, we identified a 38 nucleotide stem-loop structure (zipcode) in the 3′ untranslated region of the Cytochrome C oxidase IV (COXIV) mRNA that directs the transport of a reporter mRNA to the axon of superior cervical ganglion neurons (SCG). Over-expression of a chimeric reporter mRNA with the COXIV zipcode competed with the axonal trafficking of endogenous COXIV mRNA, and led to attenuated axon growth in SCG neurons. Here, we show that exogenous expression of the COXIV zipcode in cultured SCG neurons also results in the reduction of local ATP levels and increases levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the axon. We took advantage of this “competition” phenotype to investigate the in vivo significance of axonal transport of COXIV mRNA. Towards this end, we generated transgenic mice expressing a fluorescent reporter fused to COXIV zipcode under a forebrain-specific promoter. Immunohistological analyses and RT-PCR analyses of RNA from the transgenic mouse brain showed expression of the reporter in the deep layer neurons in the pre-frontal and frontal cortex. Consistent with the in vitro studies, we observed increased ROS levels in neurons of these transgenic animals. A battery of behavioral tests on transgenic mice expressing the COXIV zipcode revealed an “anxiety-like” behavioral phenotype, suggesting an important role for axonal trafficking of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial mRNAs in neuronal physiology and animal behavior. PMID:24151253

  17. Concussive Brain Trauma in the Mouse Results in Acute Cognitive Deficits and Sustained Impairment of Axonal Function

    PubMed Central

    Creed, Jennifer A.; DiLeonardi, Ann Mae; Fox, Douglas P.; Tessler, Alan R.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Concussive brain injury (CBI) accounts for approximately 75% of all brain-injured people in the United States each year and is particularly prevalent in contact sports. Concussion is the mildest form of diffuse traumatic brain injury (TBI) and results in transient cognitive dysfunction, the neuropathologic basis for which is traumatic axonal injury (TAI). To evaluate the structural and functional changes associated with concussion-induced cognitive deficits, adult mice were subjected to an impact on the intact skull over the midline suture that resulted in a brief apneic period and loss of the righting reflex. Closed head injury also resulted in an increase in the wet weight:dry weight ratio in the cortex suggestive of edema in the first 24 h, and the appearance of Fluoro-Jade-B-labeled degenerating neurons in the cortex and dentate gyrus of the hippocampus within the first 3 days post-injury. Compared to sham-injured mice, brain-injured mice exhibited significant deficits in spatial acquisition and working memory as measured using the Morris water maze over the first 3 days (p<0.001), but not after the fourth day post-injury. At 1 and 3 days post-injury, intra-axonal accumulation of amyloid precursor protein in the corpus callosum and cingulum was accompanied by neurofilament dephosphorylation, impaired transport of Fluoro-Gold and synaptophysin, and deficits in axonal conductance. Importantly, deficits in retrograde transport and in action potential of myelinated axons continued to be observed until 14 days post-injury, at which time axonal degeneration was apparent. These data suggest that despite recovery from acute cognitive deficits, concussive brain trauma leads to axonal degeneration and a sustained perturbation of axonal function. PMID:21299360

  18. Electrogenic Tuning of the Axon Initial Segment

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Brian D.; Goldberg, Ethan M.; Rudy, Bernardo

    2010-01-01

    Action potentials (APs) provide the primary means of rapid information transfer in the nervous system. Where exactly these signals are initiated in neurons has been a basic question in neurobiology and the subject of extensive study. Converging lines of evidence indicate that APs are initiated in a discrete and highly specialized portion of the axon—the axon initial segment (AIS). The authors review key aspects of the organization and function of the AIS and focus on recent work that has provided important insights into its electrical signaling properties. In addition to its main role in AP initiation, the new findings suggest that the AIS is also a site of complex AP modulation by specific types of ion channels localized to this axonal domain. PMID:20007821

  19. Multifunctional Silk Nerve Guides for Axon Outgrowth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tupaj, Marie C.

    Peripheral nerve regeneration is a critical issue as 2.8% of trauma patients present with this type of injury, estimating a total of 200,000 nerve repair procedures yearly in the United States. While the peripheral nervous system exhibits slow regeneration, at a rate of 0.5 mm -- 9 mm/day following trauma, this regenerative ability is only possible under certain conditions. Clinical repairs have changed slightly in the last 30 years and standard methods of treatment include suturing damaged nerve ends, allografting, and autografting, with the autograft the gold standard of these approaches. Unfortunately, the use of autografts requires a second surgery and there is a shortage of nerves available for grafting. Allografts are a second option however allografts have lower success rates and are accompanied by the need of immunosuppressant drugs. Recently there has been a focus on developing nerve guides as an "off the shelf" approach. Although some natural and synthetic guidance channels have been approved by the FDA, these nerve guides are unfunctionalized and repair only short gaps, less than 3 cm in length. The goal of this project was to identify strategies for functionalizing peripheral nerve conduits for the outgrowth of neuron axons in vitro . To accomplish this, two strategies (bioelectrical and biophysical) were indentified for increasing axon outgrowth and promoting axon guidance. Bioelectrical strategies exploited electrical stimulation for increasing neurite outgrowth. Biophysical strategies tested a range of surface topographies for axon guidance. Novel methods were developed for integrating electrical and biophysical strategies into silk films in 2D. Finally, a functionalized nerve conduit system was developed that integrated all strategies for the purpose of attaching, elongating, and guiding nervous tissue in vitro. Future directions of this work include silk conduit translation into a rat sciatic nerve model in vivo for the purpose of repairing long

  20. Temporal identity in axonal target layer recognition.

    PubMed

    Petrovic, Milan; Hummel, Thomas

    2008-12-11

    The segregation of axon and dendrite projections into distinct synaptic layers is a fundamental principle of nervous system organization and the structural basis for information processing in the brain. Layer-specific recognition molecules that allow projecting neurons to stabilize transient contacts and initiate synaptogenesis have been identified. However, most of the neuronal cell-surface molecules critical for layer organization are expressed broadly in the developing nervous system, raising the question of how these so-called permissive adhesion molecules support synaptic specificity. Here we show that the temporal expression dynamics of the zinc-finger protein sequoia is the major determinant of Drosophila photoreceptor connectivity into distinct synaptic layers. Neighbouring R8 and R7 photoreceptors show consecutive peaks of elevated sequoia expression, which correspond to their sequential target-layer innervation. Loss of sequoia in R7 leads to a projection switch into the R8 recipient layer, whereas a prolonged expression in R8 induces a redirection of their axons into the R7 layer. The sequoia-induced axon targeting is mediated through the ubiquitously expressed Cadherin-N cell adhesion molecule. Our data support a model in which recognition specificity during synaptic layer formation is generated through a temporally restricted axonal competence to respond to broadly expressed adhesion molecules. Because developing neurons innervating the same target area often project in a distinct, birth-order-dependent sequence, temporal identity seems to contain crucial information in generating not only cell type diversity during neuronal division but also connection diversity of projecting neurons.

  1. Dopamine modulates Ih in a motor axon

    PubMed Central

    Ballo, Aleksander W.; Keene, Jennifer C.; Troy, Patricia J.; Goeritz, Marie L.; Nadim, Farzan; Bucher, Dirk

    2010-01-01

    We studied the axons of the pyloric dilator (PD) neurons in the stomatogastric nervous system of the lobster. The several centimeters long portions of these axons in the motor nerves depolarize in response to low concentrations of dopamine (DA) and exhibit peripheral spike initiation in the absence of centrally generated activity. This effect is inhibited by blockers of hyperpolarization-activated inward current (Ih). We show here that peripheral spike initiation was also elicited by D1-type receptor agonists and drugs that increase cAMP. This suggests that DA acts through a D1-type receptor mechanism to modulate hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channels. We used two- electrode voltage clamp of the axon to directly study the effect of DA on Ih. Surprisingly, DA decreased the maximal conductance. However, due to a shift of the activation curve to more depolarized potentials, and a change in the slope, conductance was increased at biologically relevant membrane potentials. These changes were solely due to modulation of Ih, as DA had no discernible effect when Ih was blocked. In addition, they were not induced by repeated activation and could be mimicked by application of drugs that increase cAMP concentration. DA modulation of Ih persisted in the presence of a protein kinase A inhibitor and is therefore potentially mediated by a phosphorylation-independent direct effect of cAMP on the ion channel. A computer model of the axon showed that the changes in maximal conductance and voltage-dependence were not qualitatively affected by space clamp problems. PMID:20573890

  2. Ionized calcium concentrations in squid axons

    PubMed Central

    1976-01-01

    Values for ionized [Ca] in squid axons were obtained by measuring the light emission from a 0.1-mul drop of aequorin confined to a plastic dialysis tube of 140-mum diameter located axially. Ionized Ca had a mean value of 20 x 10(-9) M as judged by the subsequent introduction of CaEGTA/EGTA buffer (ratio ca. 0.1) into the axoplasm, and light measurement on a second aequorin drop. Ionized Ca in axoplasma was also measured by introducing arsenazo dye into an axon by injection and measuring the Ca complex of such a dye by multichannel spectrophotometry. Values so obtained were ca. 50 x 10(-9) M as calibrated against CaEGTA/EGTA buffer mixtures. Wth a freshly isolated axon in 10 mM Ca seawater, the aequorin glow invariably increased with time; a seawater [Ca] of 2-3 mM allowed a steady state with respect to [Ca]. Replacement of Na+ in seawater with choline led to a large increase in light emission from aequorin. Li seawater partially reversed this change and the reintroduction of Na+ brought light levels back to their initial value. Stimulation at 60/s for 2-5 min produced an increase in aequorin glow about 0.1% of that represented by the known Ca influx, suggesting operationally the presence of substantial Ca buffering. Treatment of an axon with CN produced a very large increase in aequorin glow and in Ca arsenazo formation only if the external seawater contained Ca. PMID:818340

  3. Interspecies variation in axon-myelin relationships.

    PubMed

    Fraher, J P; O'Sullivan, A W

    2000-01-01

    The primary objective of this paper was to determine the extent and nature of interspecies differences in axon calibre and myelin sheath thickness and in the various relationships between these. Morphometric analysis of the axon perimeter-myelin sheath thickness relationship was performed on an equivalent nerve fibre population in a mammal, the rat, a bird, the chicken, an amphibian, the frog, a bony fish, the trout, and a cartilaginous fish, the dogfish. The abducent nerve was studied. It is especially suitable for this purpose because its fibres are closely similar in type and in peripheral distribution across the species studied. The relationship differed substantially between species. Differences were present in its setting, as described by the positions of the scatterplots, in the g ratio and in the regression and correlation data relating the parameters. Both parameters were markedly larger in the fish species than in all of the others. In addition, in rat, chicken, frog and trout, where large and small fibre classes could be differentiated clearly, the setting of the relationship between the two parameters was different for the two classes. In the main, variation in each of the parameters was greater between than within species. The larger fibres in the fish species were closely similar in axon perimeter and sheath thickness despite their long evolutionary separation. From this study and from others in the series, it may be concluded that there is no fixed or constant relationship between axon calibre and the thickness of the surrounding myelin sheath. Each nerve tends to have its own particular relationship and this differs between species.

  4. The vesicular SNARE Synaptobrevin is required for Semaphorin 3A axonal repulsion

    PubMed Central

    Zylbersztejn, Kathleen; Petkovic, Maja; Burgo, Andrea; Deck, Marie; Garel, Sonia; Marcos, Séverine; Bloch-Gallego, Evelyne; Nothias, Fatiha; Serini, Guido; Bagnard, Dominique; Binz, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Attractive and repulsive molecules such as Semaphorins (Sema) trigger rapid responses that control the navigation of axonal growth cones. The role of vesicular traffic in axonal guidance is still largely unknown. The exocytic vesicular soluble N-ethylmaleimide sensitive fusion protein attachment protein receptor (SNARE) Synaptobrevin 2 (Syb2) is known for mediating neurotransmitter release in mature neurons, but its potential role in axonal guidance remains elusive. Here we show that Syb2 is required for Sema3A-dependent repulsion but not Sema3C-dependent attraction in cultured neurons and in the mouse brain. Syb2 associated with Neuropilin 1 and Plexin A1, two essential components of the Sema3A receptor, via its juxtatransmembrane domain. Sema3A receptor and Syb2 colocalize in endosomal membranes. Moreover, upon Sema3A treatment, Syb2-deficient neurons failed to collapse and transport Plexin A1 to cell bodies. Reconstitution of Sema3A receptor in nonneuronal cells revealed that Sema3A further inhibited the exocytosis of Syb2. Therefore, Sema3A-mediated signaling and axonal repulsion require Syb2-dependent vesicular traffic. PMID:22213797

  5. A dynamic formin-dependent deep F-actin network in axons

    PubMed Central

    Ganguly, Archan; Tang, Yong; Wang, Lina; Ladt, Kelsey; Loi, Jonathan; Dargent, Bénédicte; Leterrier, Christophe

    2015-01-01

    Although actin at neuronal growth cones is well-studied, much less is known about actin organization and dynamics along axon shafts and presynaptic boutons. Using probes that selectively label filamentous-actin (F-actin), we found focal “actin hotspots” along axons—spaced ∼3–4 µm apart—where actin undergoes continuous assembly/disassembly. These foci are a nidus for vigorous actin polymerization, generating long filaments spurting bidirectionally along axons—a phenomenon we call “actin trails.” Super-resolution microscopy reveals intra-axonal deep actin filaments in addition to the subplasmalemmal “actin rings” described recently. F-actin hotspots colocalize with stationary axonal endosomes, and blocking vesicle transport diminishes the actin trails, suggesting mechanistic links between vesicles and F-actin kinetics. Actin trails are formin—but not Arp2/3—dependent and help enrich actin at presynaptic boutons. Finally, formin inhibition dramatically disrupts synaptic recycling. Collectively, available data suggest a two-tier F-actin organization in axons, with stable “actin rings” providing mechanical support to the plasma membrane and dynamic "actin trails" generating a flexible cytoskeletal network with putative physiological roles. PMID:26216902

  6. Geniposide Alleviates Amyloid-Induced Synaptic Injury by Protecting Axonal Mitochondrial Trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Haijing; Zhao, Chunhui; Lv, Cui; Liu, Xiaoli; Du, Shijing; Li, Zhi; Wang, Yongyan; Zhang, Wensheng

    2017-01-01

    Synaptic and mitochondrial pathologies are early events in the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Normal axonal mitochondrial function and transport play crucial roles in maintaining synaptic function by producing high levels of adenosine triphosphate and buffering calcium. However, there can be abnormal axonal mitochondrial trafficking, distribution, and fragmentation, which are strongly correlated with amyloid-β (Aβ)-induced synaptic loss and dysfunction. The present study examined the neuroprotective effect of geniposide, a compound extracted from gardenia fruit in Aβ-treated neurons and an AD mouse model. Geniposide alleviated Aβ-induced axonal mitochondrial abnormalities by increasing axonal mitochondrial density and length and improving mitochondrial motility and trafficking in cultured hippocampal neurons, consequently ameliorating synaptic damage by reversing synaptic loss, addressing spine density and morphology abnormalities, and ameliorating the decreases in synapse-related proteins in neurons and APPswe/PS1dE9 mice. These findings provide new insights into the effects of geniposide administration on neuronal and synaptic functions under conditions of Aβ enrichment. PMID:28179878

  7. Mechanisms of diabetic neuropathy: axon dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Sima, Anders A F; Zhang, Weixian

    2014-01-01

    Diabetic neuropathy is the most common complication of diabetes. It shows a progressive development with sensory loss, pain and autonomic dysfunction as common symptoms. Pathologically it is characterized by a series of interrelated metabolic abnormalities with insulin deficiency and hyperglycemia as the initiating culprits. The neuropathy accompanying type 2DM (insulin resistance) and type 1DM (insulin deficiency) appears to differ as to their structural changes; the former showing a milder axonal involvement and segmental myelin breakdown, whereas the latter shows a more severe axonal atrophy and axonal loss. Based mainly on animal data we will describe the sequential neuropathologic changes and differences in the two types of diabetes. These differences are related to differences in a myriad of underlying sequential metabolic abnormalities, which will be dealt with in detail. How metabolic defects affect nerve function will be elaborated upon. The disorder does not only involve somatic peripheral nerves but also autonomic and central nerve tracts. Today no successful therapy exists for diabetic neuropathy. During the last 30 years several experimental drugs targeting the polyol-pathway and oxidative stress have been tested, but with limited or no success. Instead therapies targeting the initiating and overriding pathogenetic abnormalities, such as insulin-deficiency and hyperglycemia need to be employed. One such agent is the insulinomimetic C-peptide which has demonstrated significant therapeutic and preventive effects in type 1 diabetic patients. Not surprisingly this has been particularly successful following early intervention. However diabetic neuropathy still remains a major medical problem affecting millions of patients.

  8. Sprouting of axonal collaterals after spinal cord injury is prevented by delayed axonal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Collyer, E; Catenaccio, A; Lemaitre, D; Diaz, P; Valenzuela, V; Bronfman, F; Court, F A

    2014-11-01

    After an incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI), partial recovery of locomotion is accomplished with time. Previous studies have established a functional link between extension of axon collaterals from spared spinal tracts and locomotor recovery after SCI, but the tissular signals triggering collateral sprouting have not been identified. Here, we investigated whether axonal degeneration after SCI contributes to the sprouting of collaterals from axons spared after injury. To this end, we evaluated collateral sprouting from BDA-labeled uninjured corticospinal axons after spinal cord hemisection (SCI(H)) in wild type (WT) mouse and Wld(S) mouse strains, which shows a significant delay in Wallerian degeneration after injury. After SCI(H), spared fibers of WT mice extend collateral sprouts to both intact and denervated sides of the spinal cord distant from the injury site. On the contrary, in the Wld(S) mice collateral sprouting from spared fibers was greatly reduced after SCI(H). Consistent with a role for collateral sprouting in functional recovery after SCI, locomotor recovery after SCI(H) was impaired in Wld(S) mice compared to WT animals. In conclusion, our results identify axonal degeneration as one of the triggers for collateral sprouting from the contralesional uninjured fibers after an SCI(H). These results open the path for identifying molecular signals associated with tissular changes after SCI that promotes collateral sprouting and functional recovery.

  9. Axon-glial relations during regeneration of axons in the adult rat anterior medullary velum.

    PubMed

    Berry, M; Hunter, A S; Duncan, A; Lordan, J; Kirvell, S; Tsang, W L; Butt, A M

    1998-12-01

    The anterior medullary velum (AMV) of adult Wistar rats was lesioned in the midsagittal plane, transecting all decussating axons including those of the central projection of the IVth nerve. At selected times up to 200 days after transection, the degenerative and regenerative responses of axons and glia were analyzed using transmission and scanning electron microscopy and immunohistochemistry. In particular, both the capacity of oligodendrocytes to remyelinate regenerated fibers and the stability of the CNS/PNS junctional zone of the IVth nerve rootlet were documented. Transected central AMV axons exhibited four patterns of fiber regeneration in which fibers grew: rostrocaudally in the reactive paralesion neuropil (Group 1); randomly within the AMV (Group 2); into the ipsilateral IVth nerve rootlet, after turning at the lesion edge and growing recurrently through the old degenerated contralateral central trochlear nerve trajectory (Group 3); and ectopically through paralesion tears in the ependyma onto the surface of the IVth ventricle (Group 4). Group 1-3 axons regenerated unperturbed through degenerating central myelin, reactive astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, microglia, and large accumulations of hematogenous macrophages. Only Group 3 axons survived long term in significant numbers, and all became myelinated by oligodendrocytes, ultimately establishing thin sheaths with relatively normal nodal gaps and intersegmental myelin sheath lengths. Schwann cells at the CNS/PNS junction of the IVth nerve rootlet did not invade the CNS, but astrocyte processes grew across the junction into the PNS portion of the IVth nerve. The basal lamina of the junctional glia limitans remained stable throughout the experimental period.

  10. Involvement of lysosomes in the early stages of axon degeneration.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jin; Yan, Tingting; Feng, Yan; Zhai, Qiwei

    2010-02-01

    Axon degeneration is a common hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases, and the underlying mechanism remains largely unknown. Lysosomes are involved in some neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Whether lysosomes are involved in axon degeneration is yet to be elucidated. In this study, we found only about 10% lysosomes remained in axons of cultured superior cervical ganglia (SCGs) after transection for 4h when stained with LysoTracker. Furthermore, we found that lysosomal disruption occurred earlier than morphological changes and loss of mitochondrial membrane potential. In addition, the well-known axon-protective protein Wld(S) delayed injury-induced axon degeneration from both morphological changes and lysosomal disruption. Lysosomal inhibitors including chloroquine and ammonium chloride induced axon degeneration in cultured SCGs, and Wld(S) also slowed down the axon degeneration induced by lysosomal inhibitors. All these data suggest that lysosomal disruption is an early marker of axon degeneration, and inhibition of lysosome induces axon degeneration in a Wld(S)-protectable way. Thus, maintenance of normal lysosomal function might be an important approach to delay axon degeneration in neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Equivalent Activities of Repulsive Axon Guidance Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Long, Hong; Yoshikawa, Shingo

    2016-01-01

    Receptors on the growth cone at the leading edge of elongating axons play critical guidance roles by recognizing cues via their extracellular domains and transducing signals via their intracellular domains, resulting in changes in direction of growth. An important concept to have emerged in the axon guidance field is the importance of repulsion as a major guidance mechanism. Given the number and variety of different repulsive receptors, it is generally thought that there are likely to be qualitative differences in the signals they transduce. However, the nature of these possible differences is unknown. By creating chimeras using the extracellular and intracellular domains of three different Drosophila repulsive receptors, Unc5, Roundabout (Robo), and Derailed (Drl) and expressing them in defined cells within the embryonic nervous system, we examined the responses elicited by their intracellular domains systematically. Surprisingly, we found no qualitative differences in growth cone response or axon growth, suggesting that, despite their highly diverged sequences, each intracellular domain elicits repulsion via a common pathway. In terms of the signaling pathway(s) used by the repulsive receptors, mutations in the guanine nucleotide exchange factor Trio strongly enhance the repulsive activity of all three intracellular domains, suggesting that repulsion by Unc5, Robo, and Drl, and perhaps repulsion in general, involves Trio activity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT A prevailing concept that has emerged in the axon guidance field is the importance of repulsion as a guidance mechanism for steering axons to their appropriate targets. Given the number and variety of different repulsive receptors, it is generally thought that there are differences in the signals that they transduce. However, this has never been tested directly. We have used the advanced genetics of Drosophila to compare directly the outputs of different repulsive receptors. Surprisingly, we found no qualitative

  12. Sculpting Neural Circuits by Axon and Dendrite Pruning

    PubMed Central

    Riccomagno, Martin M.; Kolodkin, Alex L.

    2015-01-01

    The assembly of functional neural circuits requires the combined action of progressive and regressive events. Regressive events encompass a variety of inhibitory developmental processes, including axon and dendrite pruning, which facilitate the removal of exuberant neuronal connections. Most axon pruning involves the removal of axons that had already made synaptic connections, thus, axon pruning is tightly associated with synapse elimination. In many instances these developmental processes are regulated by the interplay between neurons and glial cells that act instructively during neural remodeling. Owing to the importance of axon and dendritic pruning, these remodeling events require precise spatial and temporal control, and this is achieved by a range of distinct molecular mechanisms. Disruption of these mechanisms results in abnormal pruning, which has been linked to brain dysfunction. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms of axon and dendritic pruning will be instrumental in advancing our knowledge of neural disease and mental disorders. PMID:26436703

  13. Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration after SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-06-01

    will determine the relationship between L1.1 and neurocan and its role in axon regeneration from adult zebrafish brainstem neurons in vitro. The...determine the relationship between L1.1 and neurocan and its role in axon regeneration from adult zebrafish brainstem neurons in vitro. Increased...concerning the potential interactions between neurocan and L1 and the role they play in axonal regeneration seen in the zebrafish . 18 Figure

  14. Histone Acetylation Inhibitors Promote Axon Growth in Adult DRG neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Shen; Nazif, Kutaiba; Smith, Alexander; Baas, Peter W; Smith, George M

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsic mechanisms that guide damaged axons to regenerate following spinal cord injury remain poorly understood. Manipulation of posttranslational modifications of key proteins in mature neurons could re-invigorate growth machinery after injury. One such modification is acetylation, a reversible process controlled by two enzyme families acting in opposition, the Histone Deacetylases (HDACs) and the Histone Acetyl Transferases (HATs). While acetylated histones in the nucleus is associated with upregulation of growth promoting genes, de-acetylated tubulin in the axoplasm is associated with more labile microtubules, conducive to axon growth. In this study we investigated the effects of HAT inhibitors and HDAC inhibitors on cultured adult dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons. We found that inhibition of HATs, using Anacardic Acid or CPTH2, improved axon outgrowth, while inhibition of HDACs using TSA or Tubacin, inhibited axon growth. Furthermore, Anacardic Acid increased the number of axons able to cross an inhibitory chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan (CSPG) border. Histone acetylation, but not tubulin acetylation levels, was affected by HAT inhibitors, whereas tubulin acetylation levels were increased in the presence of HDAC inhibitor Tubacin. Although microtubule stabilizing drug taxol did not have an effect on the lengths of DRG axons, nocodazole decreased axon lengths. While the mechanistic basis will require future studies, our data show that inhibitors of HAT can augment axon growth in adult DRG neurons, with the potential of aiding axon growth over inhibitory substrates produced by the glial scar. PMID:25702820

  15. Axonal Degeneration Is Mediated by the Mitochondrial Permeability Transition Pore

    PubMed Central

    Barrientos, Sebastian A.; Martinez, Nicolas W.; Yoo, Soonmoon; Jara, Juan S.; Zamorano, Sebastian; Hetz, Claudio; Twiss, Jeffery L.; Alvarez, Jaime; Court, Felipe A.

    2011-01-01

    Axonal degeneration is an active process that has been associated with neurodegenerative conditions triggered by mechanical, metabolic, infectious, toxic, hereditary and inflammatory stimuli. This degenerative process can cause permanent loss of function, so it represents a focus for neuroprotective strategies. Several signaling pathways are implicated in axonal degeneration, but identification of an integrative mechanism for this self-destructive process has remained elusive. Here, we show that rapid axonal degeneration triggered by distinct mechanical and toxic insults is dependent on the activation of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP). Both pharmacological and genetic targeting of cyclophilin D, a functional component of the mPTP, protects severed axons and vincristine-treated neurons from axonal degeneration in ex vivo and in vitro mouse and rat model systems. These effects were observed in axons from both the peripheral and central nervous system. Our results suggest that the mPTP is a key effector of axonal degeneration, upon which several independent signaling pathways converge. Since axonal and synapse degeneration are increasingly considered early pathological events in neurodegeneration, our work identifies a potential target for therapeutic intervention in a wide variety of conditions that lead to loss of axons and subsequent functional impairment. PMID:21248121

  16. Differences in excitability properties of FDI and ADM motor axons.

    PubMed

    Bae, Jong Seok; Sawai, Setsu; Misawa, Sonoko; Kanai, Kazuaki; Isose, Sagiri; Kuwabara, Satoshi

    2009-03-01

    The first dorsal interosseous (FDI) and abductor digiti minimi (ADM) muscles are innervated by the same ulnar nerve, but studies have shown that the former is much more severely affected in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. In this study, threshold tracking was used to investigate whether membrane properties differ between FDI and ADM motor axons. In 12 normal subjects, compound muscle action potentials were recorded from FDI and ADM after ulnar nerve stimulation at the wrist. The strength-duration time constant was significantly longer in the FDI axons than in the ADM axons, and latent addition studies showed greater threshold changes at the conditioning-test stimulus of 0.2 ms in FDI than in ADM axons. These findings suggest that nodal persistent sodium conductances are more prominent in FDI axons than in ADM axons, and therefore excitability is physiologically higher in FDI axons. Even in the same nerve at the same sites, membrane properties of FDI and ADM motor axons differ significantly, and thus their axonal/neuronal responses to disease may also differ.

  17. Molecular analysis of axon repulsion by the notochord.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Christopher N G; Ohta, Kunimasa; Quick, Marie M; Fleming, Angeleen; Keynes, Roger; Tannahill, David

    2003-03-01

    During development of the amniote peripheral nervous system, the initial trajectory of primary sensory axons is determined largely by the action of axon repellents. We have shown previously that tissues flanking dorsal root ganglia, the notochord lying medially and the dermamyotomes lying laterally, are sources of secreted molecules that prevent axons from entering inappropriate territories. Although there is evidence suggesting that SEMA3A contributes to the repellent activity of the dermamyotome, the nature of the activity secreted by the notochord remains undetermined. We have employed an expression cloning strategy to search for axon repellents secreted by the notochord, and have identified SEMA3A as a candidate repellent. Moreover, using a spectrum of different axon populations to assay the notochord activity, together with neuropilin/Fc receptor reagents to block semaphorin activity in collagen gel assays, we show that SEMA3A probably contributes to notochord-mediated repulsion. Sympathetic axons that normally avoid the midline in vivo are also repelled, in part, by a semaphorin-based notochord activity. Although our results implicate semaphorin signalling in mediating repulsion by the notochord, repulsion of early dorsal root ganglion axons is only partially blocked when using neuropilin/Fc reagents. Moreover, retinal axons, which are insensitive to SEMA3A, are also repelled by the notochord. We conclude that multiple factors act in concert to guide axons in this system, and that further notochord repellents remain to be identified.

  18. The Impact of Prestretch Induced Surface Anisotropy on Axon Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Chun; Pyne, Ryan; Kim, Jungsil; Wright, Neil Thomas; Baek, Seungik

    2016-01-01

    Nerve regeneration after spinal cord injury requires proper axon alignment to bridge the lesion site and myelination to achieve functional recovery. Significant effort has been invested in developing engineering approaches to induce axon alignment with less focus on myelination. Topological features, such as aligned fibers and channels, have been shown to induce axon alignment, but do not enhance axon thickness. We previously demonstrated that surface anisotropy generated through mechanical prestretch induced mesenchymal stem cells to align in the direction of prestretch. In this study, we demonstrate that static prestretch-induced anisotropy promotes dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons to extend thicker axon aggregates along the stretched direction and form aligned fascicular-like axon tracts. Moreover, Schwann cells, when cocultured with DRG neurons on the prestretched surface colocalized with the aligned axons and expressed P0 protein, are indicative of myelination of the aligned axons, thereby demonstrating that prestretch-induced surface anisotropy is beneficial in enhancing axon alignment, growth, and myelination. PMID:26563431

  19. Pathways regulating modality-specific axonal regeneration in peripheral nerve.

    PubMed

    Wood, Matthew D; Mackinnon, Susan E

    2015-03-01

    Following peripheral nerve injury, the distal nerve is primed for regenerating axons by generating a permissive environment replete with glial cells, cytokines, and neurotrophic factors to encourage axonal growth. However, increasing evidence demonstrates that regenerating axons within peripheral nerves still encounter axonal-growth inhibitors, such as chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans. Given the generally poor clinical outcomes following peripheral nerve injury and reconstruction, the use of pharmacological therapies to augment axonal regeneration and overcome inhibitory signals has gained considerable interest. Joshi et al. (2014) have provided evidence for preferential or modality-specific (motor versus sensory) axonal growth and regeneration due to inhibitory signaling from Rho-associated kinase (ROCK) pathway regulation. By providing inhibition to the ROCK signaling pathway through Y-27632, they demonstrate that motor neurons regenerating their axons are impacted to a greater extent compared to sensory neurons. In light of this evidence, we briefly review the literature regarding modality-specific axonal regeneration to provide context to their findings. We also describe potential and novel barriers, such as senescent Schwann cells, which provide additional axonal-growth inhibitory factors for future consideration following peripheral nerve injury.

  20. Axonal Velocity Distributions in Neural Field Equations

    PubMed Central

    Bojak, Ingo; Liley, David T. J.

    2010-01-01

    By modelling the average activity of large neuronal populations, continuum mean field models (MFMs) have become an increasingly important theoretical tool for understanding the emergent activity of cortical tissue. In order to be computationally tractable, long-range propagation of activity in MFMs is often approximated with partial differential equations (PDEs). However, PDE approximations in current use correspond to underlying axonal velocity distributions incompatible with experimental measurements. In order to rectify this deficiency, we here introduce novel propagation PDEs that give rise to smooth unimodal distributions of axonal conduction velocities. We also argue that velocities estimated from fibre diameters in slice and from latency measurements, respectively, relate quite differently to such distributions, a significant point for any phenomenological description. Our PDEs are then successfully fit to fibre diameter data from human corpus callosum and rat subcortical white matter. This allows for the first time to simulate long-range conduction in the mammalian brain with realistic, convenient PDEs. Furthermore, the obtained results suggest that the propagation of activity in rat and human differs significantly beyond mere scaling. The dynamical consequences of our new formulation are investigated in the context of a well known neural field model. On the basis of Turing instability analyses, we conclude that pattern formation is more easily initiated using our more realistic propagator. By increasing characteristic conduction velocities, a smooth transition can occur from self-sustaining bulk oscillations to travelling waves of various wavelengths, which may influence axonal growth during development. Our analytic results are also corroborated numerically using simulations on a large spatial grid. Thus we provide here a comprehensive analysis of empirically constrained activity propagation in the context of MFMs, which will allow more realistic studies

  1. Therapy Development for Diffuse Axonal Injury

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Douglas H.; Hicks, Ramona

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) remains a prominent feature of human traumatic brain injury (TBI) and a major player in its subsequent morbidity. The importance of this widespread axonal damage has been confirmed by multiple approaches including routine postmortem neuropathology as well as advanced imaging, which is now capable of detecting the signatures of traumatically induced axonal injury across a spectrum of traumatically brain-injured persons. Despite the increased interest in DAI and its overall implications for brain-injured patients, many questions remain about this component of TBI and its potential therapeutic targeting. To address these deficiencies and to identify future directions needed to fill critical gaps in our understanding of this component of TBI, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke hosted a workshop in May 2011. This workshop sought to determine what is known regarding the pathogenesis of DAI in animal models of injury as well as in the human clinical setting. The workshop also addressed new tools to aid in the identification of this axonal injury while also identifying more rational therapeutic targets linked to DAI for continued preclinical investigation and, ultimately, clinical translation. This report encapsulates the oral and written components of this workshop addressing key features regarding the pathobiology of DAI, the biomechanics implicated in its initiating pathology, and those experimental animal modeling considerations that bear relevance to the biomechanical features of human TBI. Parallel considerations of alternate forms of DAI detection including, but not limited to, advanced neuroimaging, electrophysiological, biomarker, and neurobehavioral evaluations are included, together with recommendations for how these technologies can be better used and integrated for a more comprehensive appreciation of the pathobiology of DAI and its overall structural and functional implications. Lastly, the

  2. ALS Along the Axons - Expression of Coding and Noncoding RNA Differs in Axons of ALS models.

    PubMed

    Rotem, Nimrod; Magen, Iddo; Ionescu, Ariel; Gershoni-Emek, Noga; Altman, Topaz; Costa, Christopher J; Gradus, Tal; Pasmanik-Chor, Metsada; Willis, Dianna E; Ben-Dov, Iddo Z; Hornstein, Eran; Perlson, Eran

    2017-03-16

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a multifactorial lethal motor neuron disease with no known treatment. Although the basic mechanism of its degenerative pathogenesis remains poorly understood, a subcellular spatial alteration in RNA metabolism is thought to play a key role. The nature of these RNAs remains elusive, and a comprehensive characterization of the axonal RNAs involved in maintaining neuronal health has yet to be described. Here, using cultured spinal cord (SC) neurons grown using a compartmented platform followed by next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology, we find that RNA expression differs between the somatic and axonal compartments of the neuron, for both mRNA and microRNA (miRNA). Further, the introduction of SOD1(G93A) and TDP43(A315T), established ALS-related mutations, changed the subcellular expression and localization of RNAs within the neurons, showing a spatial specificity to either the soma or the axon. Altogether, we provide here the first combined inclusive profile of mRNA and miRNA expression in two ALS models at the subcellular level. These data provide an important resource for studies on the roles of local protein synthesis and axon degeneration in ALS and can serve as a possible target pool for ALS treatment.

  3. AxonPacking: An Open-Source Software to Simulate Arrangements of Axons in White Matter

    PubMed Central

    Mingasson, Tom; Duval, Tanguy; Stikov, Nikola; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2017-01-01

    HIGHLIGHTS AxonPacking: Open-source software for simulating white matter microstructure.Validation on a theoretical disk packing problem.Reproducible and stable for various densities and diameter distributions.Can be used to study interplay between myelin/fiber density and restricted fraction. Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can provide parameters that describe white matter microstructure, such as the fiber volume fraction (FVF), the myelin volume fraction (MVF) or the axon volume fraction (AVF) via the fraction of restricted water (fr). While already being used for clinical application, the complex interplay between these parameters requires thorough validation via simulations. These simulations required a realistic, controlled and adaptable model of the white matter axons with the surrounding myelin sheath. While there already exist useful algorithms to perform this task, none of them combine optimisation of axon packing, presence of myelin sheath and availability as free and open source software. Here, we introduce a novel disk packing algorithm that addresses these issues. The performance of the algorithm is tested in term of reproducibility over 50 runs, resulting density, and stability over iterations. This tool was then used to derive multiple values of FVF and to study the impact of this parameter on fr and MVF in light of the known microstructure based on histology sample. The standard deviation of the axon density over runs was lower than 10−3 and the expected hexagonal packing for monodisperse disks was obtained with a density close to the optimal density (obtained: 0.892, theoretical: 0.907). Using an FVF ranging within [0.58, 0.82] and a mean inter-axon gap ranging within [0.1, 1.1] μm, MVF ranged within [0.32, 0.44] and fr ranged within [0.39, 0.71], which is consistent with the histology. The proposed algorithm is implemented in the open-source software AxonPacking (https://github.com/neuropoly/axonpacking) and can be useful for

  4. AxonPacking: An Open-Source Software to Simulate Arrangements of Axons in White Matter.

    PubMed

    Mingasson, Tom; Duval, Tanguy; Stikov, Nikola; Cohen-Adad, Julien

    2017-01-01

    HIGHLIGHTS AxonPacking: Open-source software for simulating white matter microstructure.Validation on a theoretical disk packing problem.Reproducible and stable for various densities and diameter distributions.Can be used to study interplay between myelin/fiber density and restricted fraction. Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) can provide parameters that describe white matter microstructure, such as the fiber volume fraction (FVF), the myelin volume fraction (MVF) or the axon volume fraction (AVF) via the fraction of restricted water (fr). While already being used for clinical application, the complex interplay between these parameters requires thorough validation via simulations. These simulations required a realistic, controlled and adaptable model of the white matter axons with the surrounding myelin sheath. While there already exist useful algorithms to perform this task, none of them combine optimisation of axon packing, presence of myelin sheath and availability as free and open source software. Here, we introduce a novel disk packing algorithm that addresses these issues. The performance of the algorithm is tested in term of reproducibility over 50 runs, resulting density, and stability over iterations. This tool was then used to derive multiple values of FVF and to study the impact of this parameter on fr and MVF in light of the known microstructure based on histology sample. The standard deviation of the axon density over runs was lower than 10(-3) and the expected hexagonal packing for monodisperse disks was obtained with a density close to the optimal density (obtained: 0.892, theoretical: 0.907). Using an FVF ranging within [0.58, 0.82] and a mean inter-axon gap ranging within [0.1, 1.1] μm, MVF ranged within [0.32, 0.44] and fr ranged within [0.39, 0.71], which is consistent with the histology. The proposed algorithm is implemented in the open-source software AxonPacking (https://github.com/neuropoly/axonpacking) and can be useful for

  5. [Current progress in functions of axon guidance molecule Robo and underlying molecular mechanism].

    PubMed

    Li, Xiao-Tong; Zhou, Qi-Sheng; Yu, Qi; Zhao, Xiao; Liu, Qing-Xin

    2014-06-25

    The axon guidance molecule Robo is a transmembrane protein which is conserved during evolution. Robo and its ligand, Slit, have been implicated in regulating many developmental processes, such as axon guidance, neuronal migration, tumor metastasis, angiogenesis, lung morphogenesis, kidney morphogenesis, heart morphogenesis, ovary development and gonad development. Robo function mainly depends on the binding of its Ig1 domain to the LRR-2 domain of Slit ligand. Meanwhile, Robo function is also mediated by binding to some signaling molecules, including the heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs), GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs) and tyrosine kinase Abelson. Several transcription factors, including Hox, Midline and Nkx2.9, were shown to regulate robo expression. In addition, alternative splicing and transport regulation also affect Robo function. In this review, we summarized the studies on the molecular structure, functions and molecular mechanism of Robo, which would propose a novel strategy for the research of neural development, as well as prevention and treatment of nervous system diseases and cancers.

  6. Neu3 sialidase-mediated ganglioside conversion is necessary for axon regeneration and is blocked in CNS axons.

    PubMed

    Kappagantula, Sunil; Andrews, Melissa R; Cheah, Menghon; Abad-Rodriguez, José; Dotti, Carlos G; Fawcett, James W

    2014-02-12

    PNS axons have a high intrinsic regenerative ability, whereas most CNS axons show little regenerative response. We show that activation of Neu3 sialidase, also known as Neuraminidase-3, causing conversion of GD1a and GT1b to GM1 ganglioside, is an essential step in regeneration occurring in PNS (sensory) but not CNS (retinal) axons in adult rat. In PNS axons, axotomy activates Neu3 sialidase, increasing the ratio of GM1/GD1a and GM1/GT1b gangliosides immediately after injury in vitro and in vivo. No change in the GM1/GD1a ratio after axotomy was observed in retinal axons (in vitro and in vivo), despite the presence of Neu3 sialidase. Externally applied sialidase converted GD1a ganglioside to GM1 and rescued axon regeneration in CNS axons and in PNS axons after Neu3 sialidase blockade. Neu3 sialidase activation in DRGs is initiated by an influx of extracellular calcium, activating P38MAPK and then Neu3 sialidase. Ganglioside conversion by Neu3 sialidase further activates the ERK pathway. In CNS axons, P38MAPK and Neu3 sialidase were not activated by axotomy.

  7. Molecular Disruptions of the Panglial Syncytium Block Potassium Siphoning and Axonal Saltatory Conduction: Pertinence to Neuromyelitis Optica and other Demyelinating Diseases of the Central Nervous System

    PubMed Central

    Rash, John E.

    2009-01-01

    The panglial syncytium maintains ionic conditions required for normal neuronal electrical activity in the central nervous system (CNS). Vital among these homeostatic functions is “potassium siphoning”, a process originally proposed to explain astrocytic sequestration and long-distance disposal of K+ released from unmyelinated axons during each action potential. Fundamentally different, more efficient processes are required in myelinated axons, where axonal K+ efflux occurs exclusively beneath and enclosed within the myelin sheath, precluding direct sequestration of K+ by nearby astrocytes. Molecular mechanisms for entry of excess K+ and obligatorily-associated osmotic water from axons into innermost myelin are not well characterized, whereas at the output end, axonally-derived K+ and associated osmotic water are known to be expelled by Kir4.1 and aquaporin-4 channels concentrated in astrocyte endfeet that surround capillaries and that form the glia limitans. Between myelin (input end) and astrocyte endfeet (output end) is a vast network of astrocyte “intermediaries” that are strongly inter-linked, including with myelin, by abundant gap junctions that disperse excess K+ and water throughout the panglial syncytium, thereby greatly reducing K+-induced osmotic swelling of myelin. Here, I review original reports that established the concept of potassium siphoning in unmyelinated CNS axons, summarize recent revolutions in our understanding of K+ efflux during axonal saltatory conduction, then describe additional components required by myelinated axons for a newly-described process of voltage-augmented “dynamic” potassium siphoning. If any of several molecular components of the panglial syncytium are compromised, K+ siphoning is blocked, myelin is destroyed, and axonal saltatory conduction ceases. Thus, a common thread linking several CNS demyelinating diseases is the disruption of potassium siphoning/water transport within the panglial syncytium. Continued

  8. Reduced number of axonal mitochondria and tau hypophosphorylation in mouse P301L tau knockin neurons.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Martín, Teresa; Pooler, Amy M; Lau, Dawn H W; Mórotz, Gábor M; De Vos, Kurt J; Gilley, Jonathan; Coleman, Michael P; Hanger, Diane P

    2016-01-01

    Expression of the frontotemporal dementia-related tau mutation, P301L, at physiological levels in adult mouse brain (KI-P301L mice) results in overt hypophosphorylation of tau and age-dependent alterations in axonal mitochondrial transport in peripheral nerves. To determine the effects of P301L tau expression in the central nervous system, we examined the kinetics of mitochondrial axonal transport and tau phosphorylation in primary cortical neurons from P301L knock-in (KI-P301L) mice. We observed a significant 50% reduction in the number of mitochondria in the axons of cortical neurons cultured from KI-P301L mice compared to wild-type neurons. Expression of murine P301L tau did not change the speed, direction of travel or likelihood of movement of mitochondria. Notably, the angle that defines the orientation of the mitochondria in the axon, and the volume of individual moving mitochondria, were significantly increased in neurons expressing P301L tau. We found that murine tau phosphorylation in KI-P301L mouse neurons was diminished and the ability of P301L tau to bind to microtubules was also reduced compared to tau in wild-type neurons. The P301L mutation did not influence the ability of murine tau to associate with membranes in cortical neurons or in adult mouse brain. We conclude that P301L tau is associated with mitochondrial changes and causes an early reduction in murine tau phosphorylation in neurons coupled with impaired microtubule binding of tau. These results support the association of mutant tau with detrimental effects on mitochondria and will be of significance for the pathogenesis of tauopathies.

  9. Clinical progression in Parkinson disease and the neurobiology of axons.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Hsiao-Chun; Ulane, Christina M; Burke, Robert E

    2010-06-01

    Despite tremendous growth in recent years in our knowledge of the molecular basis of Parkinson disease (PD) and the molecular pathways of cell injury and death, we remain without therapies that forestall disease progression. Although there are many possible explanations for this lack of success, one is that experimental therapeutics to date have not adequately focused on an important component of the disease process, that of axon degeneration. It remains unknown what neuronal compartment, either the soma or the axon, is involved at disease onset, although some have proposed that it is the axons and their terminals that take the initial brunt of injury. Nevertheless, this concept has not been formally incorporated into many of the current theories of disease pathogenesis, and it has not achieved a wide consensus. More importantly, in view of growing evidence that the molecular mechanisms of axon degeneration are separate and distinct from the canonical pathways of programmed cell death that mediate soma destruction, the possibility of early involvement of axons in PD has not been adequately emphasized as a rationale to explore the neurobiology of axons for novel therapeutic targets. We propose that ongoing degeneration of axons, not cell bodies, is the primary determinant of clinically apparent progression of disease, and that future experimental therapeutics intended to forestall disease progression will benefit from a new focus on the distinct mechanisms of axon degeneration.

  10. A Microchip for High-throughput Axon Growth Drug Screening

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun Soo; Jeong, Sehoon; Koo, Chiwan; Han, Arum; Park, Jaewon

    2016-01-01

    It has been recently known that not only the presence of inhibitory molecules associated with myelin but also the reduced growth capability of the axons limit mature central nervous system (CNS) axonal regeneration after injury. Conventional axon growth studies are typically conducted using multi-well cell culture plates that are very challenging to investigate localized effects of drugs and limited to low throughput. Unfortunately, there is currently no other in vitro tools that allow investigating localized axonal responses to biomolecules in high-throughput for screening potential drugs that might promote axonal growth. We have developed a compartmentalized neuron culture platform enabling localized biomolecular treatments in parallel to axons that are physically and fluidically isolated from their neuronal somata. The 24 axon compartments in the developed platform are designed to perform four sets of six different localized biomolecular treatments simultaneously on a single device. In addition, the novel microfluidic configuration allows culture medium of 24 axon compartments to be replenished altogether by a single aspiration process, making high-throughput drug screening a reality. PMID:27928514

  11. Axon guidance of rat cortical neurons by microcontact printed gradients.

    PubMed

    Fricke, Rita; Zentis, Peter D; Rajappa, Lionel T; Hofmann, Boris; Banzet, Marko; Offenhäusser, Andreas; Meffert, Simone H

    2011-03-01

    Substrate-bound gradients expressed in numerous spatio-temporal patterns play a crucial role during the development of complex neural circuits. A deeper understanding of the axon guidance mechanism is provided by studying the effect of a defined substrate-bound cue on a confined neural network. In this study, we constructed a discontinuous substrate-bound gradient to control neuronal cell position, the path of neurite growth, and axon directionality. A variety of gradient patterns, with slight changes in slope, width, and length were designed and fabricated by microcontact printing using laminin/poly-l-lysine (PLL) or PLL alone. The gradients were tested for neurite growth and their impact on axon guidance of embryonic rat cortical neurons. The neurite length was determined and the axon was evaluated by Tau-1 immunostaining. We found that the microgradients of laminin/PLL and PLL directed neurons' adhesion, differentially controlled the neurite growth, and guided up to 84% of the axons. The effect of the protein micropattern on axon guidance and neurite growth depended on the protein and geometric parameters used. Our approach proved to be very successful in guiding axons of single multipolar neurons with very high efficiency. It could thereby be useful to engineer defined neural networks for analyzing signal processing of functional circuits, as well as to unravel fundamental questions of the axon guidance mechanism.

  12. Action potential initiation and propagation in CA3 pyramidal axons.

    PubMed

    Meeks, Julian P; Mennerick, Steven

    2007-05-01

    Thin, unmyelinated axons densely populate the mammalian hippocampus and cortex. However, the location and dynamics of spike initiation in thin axons remain unclear. We investigated basic properties of spike initiation and propagation in CA3 neurons of juvenile rat hippocampus. Sodium channel alpha subunit distribution and local applications of tetrodotoxin demonstrate that the site of first threshold crossing in CA3 neurons is approximately 35 microm distal to the soma, somewhat more proximal than our previous estimates. This discrepancy can be explained by the finding, obtained with simultaneous whole cell somatic and extracellular axonal recordings, that a zone of axon stretching to approximately 100 microm distal to the soma reaches a maximum rate of depolarization nearly synchronously by the influx of sodium from the high-density channels. Models of the proximal axon incorporating observed distributions of sodium channel staining recapitulated salient features of somatic and axonal spike waveforms, including the predicted initiation zone, characteristic spike latencies, and conduction velocity. The preferred initiation zone was unaltered by stimulus strength or repetitive spiking, but repetitive spiking increased threshold and significantly slowed initial segment recruitment time and conduction velocity. Our work defines the dynamics of initiation and propagation in hippocampal principal cell axons and may help reconcile recent controversies over initiation site in other axons.

  13. Regulatory mechanisms underlying the differential growth of dendrites and axons.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin; Sterne, Gabriella R; Ye, Bing

    2014-08-01

    A typical neuron is comprised of an information input compartment, or the dendrites, and an output compartment, known as the axon. These two compartments are the structural basis for functional neural circuits. However, little is known about how dendritic and axonal growth are differentially regulated. Recent studies have uncovered two distinct types of regulatory mechanisms that differentiate dendritic and axonal growth: dedicated mechanisms and bimodal mechanisms. Dedicated mechanisms regulate either dendritespecific or axon-specific growth; in contrast, bimodal mechanisms direct dendritic and axonal development in opposite manners. Here, we review the dedicated and bimodal regulators identified by recent Drosophila and mammalian studies. The knowledge of these underlying molecular mechanisms not only expands our understanding about how neural circuits are wired, but also provides insights that will aid in the rational design of therapies for neurological diseases.

  14. Receptor Tyrosine Kinases: Molecular Switches Regulating CNS Axon Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Vigneswara, Vasanthy; Kundi, Sarina; Ahmed, Zubair

    2012-01-01

    The poor or lack of injured adult central nervous system (CNS) axon regeneration results in devastating consequences and poor functional recovery. The interplay between the intrinsic and extrinsic factors contributes to robust inhibition of axon regeneration of injured CNS neurons. The insufficient or lack of trophic support for injured neurons is considered as one of the major obstacles contributing to their failure to survive and regrow their axons after injury. In the CNS, many of the signalling pathways associated with neuronal survival and axon regeneration are regulated by several classes of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) that respond to a variety of ligands. This paper highlights and summarises the most relevant recent findings pertinent to different classes of the RTK family of molecules, with a particular focus on elucidating their role in CNS axon regeneration. PMID:22848811

  15. Neuronal polarity in Drosophila: sorting out axons and dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Rolls, Melissa M.

    2014-01-01

    Drosophila neurons have identifiable axons and dendrites based on cell shape, but it is only just starting to become clear how Drosophila neurons are polarized at the molecular level. Dendrite-specific components, including the Golgi complex, GABA receptors, neurotransmitter receptor scaffolding proteins and cell adhesion molecules have been described. And proteins involved in constructing presynaptic specializations are concentrated in axons of some neurons. A very simple model for how these components are distributed to axons and dendrites can be constructed based on the opposite polarity of microtubules in axons and dendrites: dynein carries cargo into dendrites, and kinesins carry cargo into axons. The simple model works well for multipolar neurons, but will likely need refinement for unipolar neurons, which are common in Drosophila. PMID:21557498

  16. Preferential and Bidirectional Labeling of the Rubrospinal Tract with Adenovirus-GFP for Monitoring Normal and Injured Axons

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaofei; Smith, George M.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The rodent rubrospinal tract (RST) has been studied extensively to investigate regeneration and remodeling of central nervous system (CNS) axons. Currently no retrograde tracers can specifically label rubrospinal axons and neurons (RSNs). The RST can be anterogradely labeled by injecting tracers into the red nucleus (RN), but accurately locating the RN is a technical challenge. Here we developed a recombinant adenovirus carrying a green fluorescent protein reporter gene (Adv-GFP) which can preferentially, intensely, and bi-directionally label the RST. When Adv-GFP was injected into the second lumbar spinal cord, the GFP was specifically transported throughout the entire RST, with peak labeling seen at 2 weeks post-injection. When Adv-GFP was injected directly into the RN, GFP was anterogradely transported throughout the RST. Following spinal cord injury (SCI), injection of Adv-GFP resulted in visualization of GFP in transected, spared, or sprouted RST axons bi-directionally. Thus Adv-GFP could be used as a novel tool for monitoring and evaluating strategies designed to maximize RST axonal regeneration and remodeling following SCI. PMID:21299337

  17. Vascular endothelial-derived semaphorin 3 inhibits sympathetic axon growth.

    PubMed

    Damon, Deborah H

    2006-03-01

    Vascular sympathetic innervation is an important determinant of blood pressure and blood flow. The mechanisms that determine vascular sympathetic innervation are not well understood. Recent studies indicate that vascular endothelial cells (EC) express semaphorin 3A, a repulsive axon guidance cue. This suggests that EC would inhibit the growth of axons to blood vessels. The present study tests this hypothesis. RT-PCR and Western analyses confirmed that rat aortic vascular ECs expressed semaphorin 3A as well as other class 3 semaphorins (sema 3s). To determine the effects of EC-derived sema 3 on sympathetic axons, axon outgrowth was assessed in cultures of neonatal sympathetic ganglia grown for 72 h in the absence and presence of vascular EC. Nerve growth factor-induced axon growth in the presence of ECs was 50 +/- 4% (P < 0.05) of growth in the absence of ECs. ECs did not inhibit axon growth in the presence of an antibody that neutralized the activity of sema 3 (P > 0.05). RT-PCR and Western analyses also indicated that sema 3s were expressed in ECs of intact arteries. To assess the function of sema 3s in arteries, sympathetic ganglia were grown in the presence of arteries for 72 h, and the percentage of axons that grew toward the artery was determined: 44 +/- 4% of axons grew toward neonatal carotid arteries. Neutralization of sema 3s or removal of EC increased the percentage of axons that grew toward the artery (71 +/- 8% and 72 +/- 8%, respectively). These data indicate that vascular EC-derived sema 3s inhibit sympathetic axon growth and may thus be a determinant of vascular sympathetic innervation.

  18. Axon and dendrite pruning in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Yu, Fengwei; Schuldiner, Oren

    2014-08-01

    Pruning, a process by which neurons selectively remove exuberant or unnecessary processes without causing cell death, is crucial for the establishment of mature neural circuits during animal development. Yet relatively little is known about molecular and cellular mechanisms that govern neuronal pruning. Holometabolous insects, such as Drosophila, undergo complete metamorphosis and their larval nervous systems are replaced with adult-specific ones, thus providing attractive models for studying neuronal pruning. Drosophila mushroom body and dendritic arborization neurons have been utilized as two appealing systems to elucidate the underlying mechanisms of axon and dendrite pruning, respectively. In this review we highlight recent developments and discuss some similarities and differences in the mechanisms that regulate these two distinct modes of neuronal pruning in Drosophila.

  19. Patterns of growth, axonal extension and axonal arborization of neuronal lineages in the developing Drosophila brain

    PubMed Central

    Larsen, Camilla; Shy, Diana; Spindler, Shana R.; Fung, Siaumin; Pereanu, Wayne; Younossi -Hartenstein, Amelia; Hartenstein, Volker

    2009-01-01

    The Drosophila central brain is composed of approximately 100 paired lineages, with most lineages comprising 100–150 neurons. Most lineages have a number of important characteristics in common. Typically, neurons of a lineage stay together as a coherent cluster and project their axons into a coherent bundle visible from late embryo to adult. Neurons born during the embryonic period form the primary axon tracts (PATs) that follow stereotyped pathways in the neuropile. Apoptotic cell death removes an average of 30–40% of primary neurons around the time of hatching. Secondary neurons generated during the larval period form secondary axon tracts (SATs) that typically fasciculate with their corresponding primary axon tract. SATs develop into the long fascicles that interconnect the different compartments of the adult brain. Structurally, we distinguish between three types of lineages: PD lineages, characterized by distinct, spatially separate proximal and distal arborizations; C lineages with arborizations distributed continuously along the entire length of their tract; D lineages that lack proximal arborizations. Arborizations of many lineages, in particular those of the PD type, are restricted to distinct neuropile compartments. We propose that compartments are ‘scaffolded” by individual lineages, or small groups thereof. Thereby, the relatively small number of primary neurons of each primary lineage set up the compartment map in the late embryo. Compartments grow during the larval period simply by an increase in arbor volume of primary neurons. Arbors of secondary neurons form within or adjacent to the larval compartments, resulting in smaller compartment subdivisions and additional, adult specific compartments. PMID:19538956

  20. Neuron Morphology Influences Axon Initial Segment Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Gulledge, Allan T; Bravo, Jaime J

    2016-01-01

    In most vertebrate neurons, action potentials are initiated in the axon initial segment (AIS), a specialized region of the axon containing a high density of voltage-gated sodium and potassium channels. It has recently been proposed that neurons use plasticity of AIS length and/or location to regulate their intrinsic excitability. Here we quantify the impact of neuron morphology on AIS plasticity using computational models of simplified and realistic somatodendritic morphologies. In small neurons (e.g., dentate granule neurons), excitability was highest when the AIS was of intermediate length and located adjacent to the soma. Conversely, neurons having larger dendritic trees (e.g., pyramidal neurons) were most excitable when the AIS was longer and/or located away from the soma. For any given somatodendritic morphology, increasing dendritic membrane capacitance and/or conductance favored a longer and more distally located AIS. Overall, changes to AIS length, with corresponding changes in total sodium conductance, were far more effective in regulating neuron excitability than were changes in AIS location, while dendritic capacitance had a larger impact on AIS performance than did dendritic conductance. The somatodendritic influence on AIS performance reflects modest soma-to-AIS voltage attenuation combined with neuron size-dependent changes in AIS input resistance, effective membrane time constant, and isolation from somatodendritic capacitance. We conclude that the impact of AIS plasticity on neuron excitability will depend largely on somatodendritic morphology, and that, in some neurons, a shorter or more distally located AIS may promote, rather than limit, action potential generation.

  1. Local erythropoietin signaling enhances regeneration in peripheral axons.

    PubMed

    Toth, C; Martinez, J A; Liu, W Q; Diggle, J; Guo, G F; Ramji, N; Mi, R; Hoke, A; Zochodne, D W

    2008-06-23

    Erythropoietin (EPO) and its receptor (EPO-R), mediate neuroprotection from axonopathy and apoptosis in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). We examined the impact and potential mechanisms of local EPO signaling on regenerating PNS axons in vivo and in vitro. As a consequence of injury, peripheral nerve axons and DRG neurons have a marked increase in the expression of EPO and EPO-R. Local delivery of EPO via conduit over 2 weeks to rat sciatic nerve following crush injury increased the density and maturity of regenerating myelinated axons growing distally from the crush site. In addition, EPO also rescued retrograde degeneration and atrophy of axons. EPO substantially increased the density and intensity of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) expression within outgrowing axons. Behavioral improvements in sensorimotor function also occurred in rats exposed to near nerve EPO delivery. EPO delivery led to decreased nuclear factor kappaB (NFkB) activation but increased phosphorylation of Akt and STAT3 within nerve and dorsal root ganglia neurons indicating rescue from an injury phenotype. Spinal cord explant studies also demonstrated a similar dose-dependent effect of EPO upon motor axonal outgrowth. Local EPO signaling enhances regenerating peripheral nervous system axons in addition to its known neuroprotection. Exogenous EPO may have a therapeutic role in a large number of peripheral nerve diseases through its impact on regeneration.

  2. Developmental mechanism of the periodic membrane skeleton in axons

    PubMed Central

    Zhong, Guisheng; He, Jiang; Zhou, Ruobo; Lorenzo, Damaris; Babcock, Hazen P; Bennett, Vann; Zhuang, Xiaowei

    2014-01-01

    Actin, spectrin, and associated molecules form a periodic sub-membrane lattice structure in axons. How this membrane skeleton is developed and why it preferentially forms in axons are unknown. Here, we studied the developmental mechanism of this lattice structure. We found that this structure emerged early during axon development and propagated from proximal regions to distal ends of axons. Components of the axon initial segment were recruited to the lattice late during development. Formation of the lattice was regulated by the local concentration of βII spectrin, which is higher in axons than in dendrites. Increasing the dendritic concentration of βII spectrin by overexpression or by knocking out ankyrin B induced the formation of the periodic structure in dendrites, demonstrating that the spectrin concentration is a key determinant in the preferential development of this structure in axons and that ankyrin B is critical for the polarized distribution of βII spectrin in neurites. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04581.001 PMID:25535840

  3. The histone acetyltransferase p300 promotes intrinsic axonal regeneration.

    PubMed

    Gaub, Perrine; Joshi, Yashashree; Wuttke, Anja; Naumann, Ulrike; Schnichels, Sven; Heiduschka, Peter; Di Giovanni, Simone

    2011-07-01

    Axonal regeneration and related functional recovery following axonal injury in the adult central nervous system are extremely limited, due to a lack of neuronal intrinsic competence and the presence of extrinsic inhibitory signals. As opposed to what occurs during nervous system development, a weak proregenerative gene expression programme contributes to the limited intrinsic capacity of adult injured central nervous system axons to regenerate. Here we show, in an optic nerve crush model of axonal injury, that adenoviral (cytomegalovirus promoter) overexpression of the acetyltransferase p300, which is regulated during retinal ganglion cell maturation and repressed in the adult, can promote axonal regeneration of the optic nerve beyond 0.5 mm. p300 acetylates histone H3 and the proregenerative transcription factors p53 and CCAAT-enhancer binding proteins in retinal ganglia cells. In addition, it directly occupies and acetylates the promoters of the growth-associated protein-43, coronin 1 b and Sprr1a and drives the gene expression programme of several regeneration-associated genes. On the contrary, overall increase in cellular acetylation using the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A, enhances retinal ganglion cell survival but not axonal regeneration after optic nerve crush. Therefore, p300 targets both the epigenome and transcription to unlock a post-injury silent gene expression programme that would support axonal regeneration.

  4. A Microchip for Quantitative Analysis of CNS Axon Growth under Localized Biomolecular Treatments

    PubMed Central

    Park, Jaewon; Kim, Sunja; Park, Su Inn; Choe, Yoonsuck; Li, Jianrong; Han, Arum

    2013-01-01

    Growth capability of neurons is an essential factor in axon regeneration. To better understand how microenvironments influence axon growth, methods that allow spatial control of cellular microenvironments and easy quantification of axon growth are critically needed. Here, we present a microchip capable of physically guiding the growth directions of axons while providing physical and fluidic isolation from neuronal somata/dendrites that enables localized biomolecular treatments and linear axon growth. The microchip allows axons to grow in straight lines inside the axon compartments even after the isolation; therefore, significantly facilitating the axon length quantification process. We further developed an image processing algorithm that automatically quantifies axon growth. The effect of localized extracellular matrix components and brain-derived neurotropic factor treatments on axon growth was investigated. Results show that biomolecules may have substantially different effects on axon growth depending on where they act. For example, while chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan causes axon retraction when added to the axons, it promotes axon growth when applied to the somata. The newly developed microchip overcomes limitations of conventional axon growth research methods that lack localized control of biomolecular environments and are often performed at a significantly lower cell density for only a short period of time due to difficulty in monitoring of axonal growth. This microchip may serve as a powerful tool for investigating factors that promote axon growth and regeneration. PMID:24161788

  5. Axon-glia synapses are highly vulnerable to white matter injury in the developing brain.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yan; Liu, Xiao-Bo; Pleasure, David E; Deng, Wenbin

    2012-01-01

    The biology of cerebral white matter injury has been woefully understudied, in part because of the difficulty of reliably modeling this type of injury in rodents. Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) is the predominant form of brain injury and the most common cause of cerebral palsy in premature infants. PVL is characterized by predominant white matter injury. No specific therapy for PVL is presently available, because the pathogenesis is not well understood. Here we report that two types of mouse PVL models have been created by hypoxia-ischemia with or without systemic coadministration of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS coadministration exacerbated hypoxic-ischemic white matter injury and led to enhanced microglial activation and astrogliosis. Drug trials with the antiinflammatory agent minocycline, the antiexcitotoxic agent NBQX, and the antioxidant agent edaravone showed various degrees of protection in the two models, indicating that excitotoxic, oxidative, and inflammatory forms of injury are involved in the pathogenesis of injury to immature white matter. We then applied immunoelectron microscopy to reveal fine structural changes in the injured white matter and found that synapses between axons and oligodendroglial precursor cells (OPCs) are quickly and profoundly damaged. Hypoxia-ischemia caused a drastic decrease in the number of postsynaptic densities associated with the glutamatergic axon-OPC synapses defined by the expression of vesicular glutamate transporters, vGluT1 and vGluT2, on axon terminals that formed contacts with OPCs in the periventricular white matter, resulted in selective shrinkage of the postsynaptic OPCs contacted by vGluT2 labeled synapses, and led to excitotoxicity mediated by GluR2-lacking, Ca(2+) -permeable AMPA receptors. Overall, the present study provides novel mechanistic insights into the pathogenesis of PVL and reveals that axon-glia synapses are highly vulnerable to white matter injury in the developing brain. More broadly, the

  6. High plasticity of axonal pathology in Alzheimer's disease mouse models.

    PubMed

    Blazquez-Llorca, Lidia; Valero-Freitag, Susana; Rodrigues, Eva Ferreira; Merchán-Pérez, Ángel; Rodríguez, J Rodrigo; Dorostkar, Mario M; DeFelipe, Javier; Herms, Jochen

    2017-02-07

    Axonal dystrophies (AxDs) are swollen and tortuous neuronal processes that are associated with extracellular depositions of amyloid β (Aβ) and have been observed to contribute to synaptic alterations occurring in Alzheimer's disease. Understanding the temporal course of this axonal pathology is of high relevance to comprehend the progression of the disease over time. We performed a long-term in vivo study (up to 210 days of two-photon imaging) with two transgenic mouse models (dE9xGFP-M and APP-PS1xGFP-M). Interestingly, AxDs were formed only in a quarter of GFP-expressing axons near Aβ-plaques, which indicates a selective vulnerability. AxDs, especially those reaching larger sizes, had long lifetimes and appeared as highly plastic structures with large variations in size and shape and axonal sprouting over time. In the case of the APP-PS1 mouse only, the formation of new long axonal segments in dystrophic axons (re-growth phenomenon) was observed. Moreover, new AxDs could appear at the same point of the axon where a previous AxD had been located before disappearance (re-formation phenomenon). In addition, we observed that most AxDs were formed and developed during the imaging period, and numerous AxDs had already disappeared by the end of this time. This work is the first in vivo study analyzing quantitatively the high plasticity of the axonal pathology around Aβ plaques. We hypothesized that a therapeutically early prevention of Aβ plaque formation or their growth might halt disease progression and promote functional axon regeneration and the recovery of neural circuits.

  7. Reassembly of Excitable Domains after CNS Axon Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Marin, Miguel A.; de Lima, Silmara; Gilbert, Hui-Ya; Giger, Roman J.; Benowitz, Larry

    2016-01-01

    Action potential initiation and propagation in myelinated axons require ion channel clustering at axon initial segments (AIS) and nodes of Ranvier. Disruption of these domains after injury impairs nervous system function. Traditionally, injured CNS axons are considered refractory to regeneration, but some recent approaches challenge this view by showing robust long-distance regeneration. However, whether these approaches allow remyelination and promote the reestablishment of AIS and nodes of Ranvier is unknown. Using mouse optic nerve crush as a model for CNS traumatic injury, we performed a detailed analysis of AIS and node disruption after nerve crush. We found significant disruption of AIS and loss of nodes within days of the crush, and complete loss of nodes 1 week after injury. Genetic deletion of the tumor suppressor phosphatase and tensin homolog (Pten) in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), coupled with stimulation of RGCs by inflammation and cAMP, dramatically enhanced regeneration. With this treatment, we found significant reestablishment of RGC AIS, remyelination, and even reassembly of nodes in regions proximal, within, and distal to the crush site. Remyelination began near the retina, progressed distally, and was confirmed by electron microscopy. Although axons grew rapidly, remyelination and nodal ion channel clustering was much slower. Finally, genetic deletion of ankyrinG from RGCs to block AIS reassembly did not affect axon regeneration, indicating that preservation of neuronal polarity is not required for axon regeneration. Together, our results demonstrate, for the first time, that regenerating CNS axons can be remyelinated and reassemble new AIS and nodes of Ranvier. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT We show, for the first time, that regenerated CNS axons have the capacity to both remyelinate and reassemble the axon initial segments and nodes of Ranvier necessary for rapid and efficient action potential propagation. PMID:27581456

  8. Intra-axonal myosin and actin in nerve regeneration.

    PubMed

    McQuarrie, Irvine G; Lund, Linda M

    2009-10-01

    A focused review of sciatic nerve regeneration in the rat model, based on research conducted by the authors, is presented. We examine structural proteins carried distally in the axon by energy-requiring motor enzymes, using protein chemistry and molecular biology techniques in combination with immunohistochemistry. Relevant findings from other laboratories are cited and discussed. The general conclusion is that relatively large amounts of actin and tubulin are required to construct a regenerating axon and that these materials mainly originate in the parent axon. The motor enzymes that carry these proteins forward as macromolecules include kinesin and dynein but probably also include myosin.

  9. Axon-glial interactions at the Drosophila CNS midline.

    PubMed

    Crews, Stephen T

    2010-01-01

    The glia that reside at the midline of the Drosophila CNS are an important embryonic signaling center and also wrap the axons that cross the CNS. The development of the midline glia (MG) is characterized by migration, ensheathment, subdivision of axon commissures, apoptosis, and the extension of glial processes. All of these events are characterized by cell-cell contact between MG and adjacent neurons. Cell adhesion and signaling proteins that mediate different aspects of MG development and MG-neuron interactions have been identified. This provides a foundation for ultimately obtaining an integrated picture of how the MG assemble into a characteristic axonal support structure in the CNS.

  10. Npn-1 contributes to axon-axon interactions that differentially control sensory and motor innervation of the limb.

    PubMed

    Huettl, Rosa-Eva; Soellner, Heidi; Bianchi, Elisa; Novitch, Bennett G; Huber, Andrea B

    2011-02-01

    The initiation, execution, and completion of complex locomotor behaviors are depending on precisely integrated neural circuitries consisting of motor pathways that activate muscles in the extremities and sensory afferents that deliver feedback to motoneurons. These projections form in tight temporal and spatial vicinities during development, yet the molecular mechanisms and cues coordinating these processes are not well understood. Using cell-type specific ablation of the axon guidance receptor Neuropilin-1 (Npn-1) in spinal motoneurons or in sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG), we have explored the contribution of this signaling pathway to correct innervation of the limb. We show that Npn-1 controls the fasciculation of both projections and mediates inter-axonal communication. Removal of Npn-1 from sensory neurons results in defasciculation of sensory axons and, surprisingly, also of motor axons. In addition, the tight coupling between these two heterotypic axonal populations is lifted with sensory fibers now leading the spinal nerve projection. These findings are corroborated by partial genetic elimination of sensory neurons, which causes defasciculation of motor projections to the limb. Deletion of Npn-1 from motoneurons leads to severe defasciculation of motor axons in the distal limb and dorsal-ventral pathfinding errors, while outgrowth and fasciculation of sensory trajectories into the limb remain unaffected. Genetic elimination of motoneurons, however, revealed that sensory axons need only minimal scaffolding by motor axons to establish their projections in the distal limb. Thus, motor and sensory axons are mutually dependent on each other for the generation of their trajectories and interact in part through Npn-1-mediated fasciculation before and within the plexus region of the limbs.

  11. Rab5 and its effector FHF contribute to neuronal polarity through dynein-dependent retrieval of somatodendritic proteins from the axon

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xiaoli; Farías, Ginny G.; Mattera, Rafael; Bonifacino, Juan S.

    2016-01-01

    An open question in cell biology is how the general intracellular transport machinery is adapted to perform specialized functions in polarized cells such as neurons. Here we illustrate this adaptation by elucidating a role for the ubiquitous small GTPase Ras-related protein in brain 5 (Rab5) in neuronal polarity. We show that inactivation or depletion of Rab5 in rat hippocampal neurons abrogates the somatodendritic polarity of the transferrin receptor and several glutamate receptor types, resulting in their appearance in the axon. This loss of polarity is not caused primarily by increased transport from the soma to the axon but rather by decreased retrieval from the axon to the soma. Retrieval is also dependent on the Rab5 effector Fused Toes (FTS)–Hook–FTS and Hook-interacting protein (FHIP) (FHF) complex, which interacts with the minus-end–directed microtubule motor dynein and its activator dynactin to drive a population of axonal retrograde carriers containing somatodendritic proteins toward the soma. These findings emphasize the importance of both biosynthetic sorting and axonal retrieval for the polarized distribution of somatodendritic receptors at steady state. PMID:27559088

  12. Epigenetic Regulation of Axon Regeneration after Neural Injury

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Jung Eun; Cho, Yongcheol

    2017-01-01

    When peripheral axons are damaged, neuronal injury signaling pathways induce transcriptional changes that support axon regeneration and consequent functional recovery. The recent development of bioinformatics techniques has allowed for the identification of many of the regeneration-associated genes that are regulated by neural injury, yet it remains unclear how global changes in transcriptome are coordinated. In this article, we review recent studies on the epigenetic mechanisms orchestrating changes in gene expression in response to nerve injury. We highlight the importance of epigenetic mechanisms in discriminating efficient axon regeneration in the peripheral nervous system and very limited axon regrowth in the central nervous system and discuss the therapeutic potential of targeting epigenetic regulators to improve neural recovery. PMID:28152303

  13. Axon guidance: repulsion and attraction in roundabout ways.

    PubMed

    Pappu, Kartik S; Zipursky, S Lawrence

    2010-05-11

    The secreted signal Slit and its three receptors, Robo1-3, regulate axon guidance in the Drosophila nervous system. Differences in expression and structure of Robo paralogs contribute to diversifying growth cone responses to a common ligand.

  14. Motile axonal mitochondria contribute to the variability of presynaptic strength.

    PubMed

    Sun, Tao; Qiao, Haifa; Pan, Ping-Yue; Chen, Yanmin; Sheng, Zu-Hang

    2013-08-15

    One of the most notable characteristics of synaptic transmission is the wide variation in synaptic strength in response to identical stimulation. In hippocampal neurons, approximately one-third of axonal mitochondria are highly motile, and some dynamically pass through presynaptic boutons. This raises a fundamental question: can motile mitochondria contribute to the pulse-to-pulse variability of presynaptic strength? Recently, we identified syntaphilin as an axonal mitochondrial-docking protein. Using hippocampal neurons and slices of syntaphilin knockout mice, we demonstrate that the motility of axonal mitochondria correlates with presynaptic variability. Enhancing mitochondrial motility increases the pulse-to-pulse variability, whereas immobilizing mitochondria reduces the variability. By dual-color live imaging at single-bouton levels, we further show that motile mitochondria passing through boutons dynamically influence synaptic vesicle release, mainly by altering ATP homeostasis in axons. Thus, our study provides insight into the fundamental properties of the CNS to ensure the plasticity and reliability of synaptic transmission.

  15. Restoration of visual function by enhancing conduction in regenerated axons

    PubMed Central

    Bei, Fengfeng; Lee, Henry Hing Cheong; Liu, Xuefeng; Gunner, Georgia; Jin, Hai; Ma, Long; Wang, Chen; Hou, lijun; Hensch, Takao K.; Frank, Eric; Sanes, Joshua R.; Chen, Chinfei; Fagiolini, Michela; He, Zhigang

    2016-01-01

    Although a number of repair strategies have been shown to promote axon outgrowth following neuronal injury in the mammalian central nervous system, it remains unclear whether regenerated axons establish functional synapses and support behavior. Here, in both juvenile and adult mice, we show that either PTEN and SOCS3 co-deletion, or co-overexpression of osteopontin (OPN)/insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1)/ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF), induces regrowth of retinal axons and formation of functional synapses in the superior colliculus (SC), but not significant recovery of visual function. Further analyses suggest that regenerated axons fail to conduct action potentials from the eye to the SC due to lack of myelination. Consistent with this idea, administration of voltage-gated potassium channel blockers restores conduction and results in increased visual acuity. Thus, enhancing both regeneration and conduction effectively improves function after optic nerve injury. PMID:26771493

  16. Sodium Channels, Mitochondria, and Axonal Degeneration in Peripheral Neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Persson, Anna-Karin; Hoeijmakers, Janneke G J; Estacion, Mark; Black, Joel A; Waxman, Stephen G

    2016-05-01

    Peripheral neuropathy results from damage to peripheral nerves and is often accompanied by pain in affected limbs. Treatment represents an unmet medical need and a thorough understanding of the mechanisms underlying axonal injury is needed. Longer nerve fibers tend to degenerate first (length-dependence), and patients carrying pathogenic mutations throughout life usually become symptomatic in mid- or late-life (time-dependence). The activity of voltage-gated sodium channels can contribute to axonal injury and sodium channel gain-of-function mutations have been linked to peripheral neuropathy. Recent studies have implicated sodium channel activity, mitochondrial compromise, and reverse-mode Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchange in time- and length-dependent axonal injury. Elucidation of molecular mechanisms underlying axonal injury in peripheral neuropathy may provide new therapeutic strategies for this painful and debilitating condition.

  17. Neuronal intrinsic barriers for axon regeneration in the adult CNS

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Fang; He, Zhigang

    2010-01-01

    A major reason for the devastating and permanent disabilities after spinal cord and other types of CNS injury is the failure of injured axons to regenerate and to re-build the functional circuits. Thus, a long-standing goal has been to develop strategies that could promote axon regeneration and restore functions. Recent studies revealed that simply removing extracellular inhibitory activities is insufficient for successful axon regeneration in the adult CNS. On the other side, evidence from different species and different models is accumulating to support the notion that diminished intrinsic regenerative ability of mature neurons is a major contributor to regeneration failure. This review will summarize the molecular mechanisms regulating intrinsic axon growth capacity in the adult CNS and discuss potential implications for therapeutic strategies. PMID:20418094

  18. Recovery of axonal myelination sheath and axonal caliber in the mouse corpus callosum following damage induced by N,N-diethyldithiocarbamate.

    PubMed

    Utrera, Juana; Romero, Rafael; Verdaguer, Ester; Junyent, Fèlix; Auladell, Carme

    2011-12-01

    Disulfiram is an aldehyde dehydrogenase inhibitor used for the treatment of alcohol dependence and of cocaine addiction. It has been demonstrated that subchronic administration of disulfiram or N,N-diethyldithiocarbamate (DEDTC), the main derivative of disulfiram, to rats can produce central-peripheral distal axonopathy. However, few data regarding the axonal effects of these compounds in the central nervous system exist. Our previous studies have revealed DEDTC-induced axonal damage in the mouse brain during the course of postnatal development, together with alterations in axonal pathfinding and in the myelination process, with partial recovery during the post-treatment period. In order to gather new data about how this axonal damage and recovery occurs in the central nervous system, we performed an ultrastructural analysis of the axons located in the corpus callosum from mice treated with DEDTC during postnatal development. The axonal caliber throughout the axonal area, the maximum axonal diameter, the maximum fiber diameter, and the axonal circularity, at different postnatal stages [from postnatal day (P)9 to P30], were analyzed. In addition, parameters related to the myelinization process (number of myelinated axons, sheath thickness, and the ratio of myelinated axons to total axons) were evaluated. A reduction in the average value of axonal caliber during treatment and a delay in the axonal myelination process were detected. Whereas early recovery of individual axons occurred after treatment (P22), complete recovery of myelinated axons occurred at late postnatal stages (P42). Therefore, chronic treatment with dithiocarbamates requires periods of rest to encourage the recovery of myelinated axons.

  19. Evaluation of the Technicon Axon analyser.

    PubMed

    Martínez, C; Márquez, M; Cortés, M; Mercé, J; Rodriguez, J; González, F

    1990-01-01

    An evaluation of the Technicon Axon analyser was carried out following the guidelines of the 'Sociedad Española de Química Clínica' and the European Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards.A photometric study revealed acceptable results at both 340 nm and 404 nm. Inaccuracy and imprecision were lower at 404 nm than at 340 nm, although poor dispersion was found at both wavelengths, even at low absorbances. Drift was negligible, the imprecision of the sample pipette delivery system was greater for small sample volumes, the reagent pipette delivery system imprecision was acceptable and the sample diluting system study showed good precision and accuracy.Twelve analytes were studied for evaluation of the analyser under routine working conditions. Satisfactory results were obtained for within-run imprecision, while coefficients of variation for betweenrun imprecision were much greater than expected. Neither specimenrelated nor specimen-independent contamination was found in the carry-over study. For all analytes assayed, when comparing patient sample results with those obtained in a Hitachi 737 analyser, acceptable relative inaccuracy was observed.

  20. 6-Sulphated Chondroitins Have a Positive Influence on Axonal Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Rachel; Rosahl, Thomas W.; Whiting, Paul J.; Fawcett, James W.; Kwok, Jessica C. F.

    2011-01-01

    Chondroitin sulphate proteoglycans (CSPGs) upregulated in the glial scar inhibit axon regeneration via their sulphated glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). Chondroitin 6-sulphotransferase-1 (C6ST-1) is upregulated after injury leading to an increase in 6-sulphated GAG. In this study, we ask if this increase in 6-sulphated GAG is responsible for the increased inhibition within the glial scar, or whether it represents a partial reversion to the permissive embryonic state dominated by 6-sulphated glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). Using C6ST-1 knockout mice (KO), we studied post-injury changes in chondroitin sulphotransferase (CSST) expression and the effect of chondroitin 6-sulphates on both central and peripheral axon regeneration. After CNS injury, wild-type animals (WT) showed an increase in mRNA for C6ST-1, C6ST-2 and C4ST-1, but KO did not upregulate any CSSTs. After PNS injury, while WT upregulated C6ST-1, KO showed an upregulation of C6ST-2. We examined regeneration of nigrostriatal axons, which demonstrate mild spontaneous axon regeneration in the WT. KO showed many fewer regenerating axons and more axonal retraction than WT. However, in the PNS, repair of the median and ulnar nerves led to similar and normal levels of axon regeneration in both WT and KO. Functional tests on plasticity after the repair also showed no evidence of enhanced plasticity in the KO. Our results suggest that the upregulation of 6-sulphated GAG after injury makes the extracellular matrix more permissive for axon regeneration, and that the balance of different CSs in the microenvironment around the lesion site is an important factor in determining the outcome of nervous system injury. PMID:21747937

  1. Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration After SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-01-01

    Months 1-18) Introduction: The zebrafish spinal cord model system is unique because of the co-existence of brainstem neurons that do ( regenerators ) and...3: To identify genes involved in axon regeneration from brainstem neurons in the injured adult zebrafish spinal cord. Experiments will be...performed to label brainstem neurons with fast blue that do or do not, regenerate an axon across an injury in the adult zebrafish spinal cord. Non

  2. Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration After SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-07-01

    1-12) Introduction: The zebrafish spinal cord model system is unique because of the co-existence of brainstem neurons that do ( regenerators ) and...11 SOW: Specifc Aim 3: To identify genes involved in axon regeneration from brainstem neurons in the injured adult zebrafish spinal cord...Experiments will be performed to label brainstem neurons with fast blue that do or do not, regenerate an axon across an injury in the adult zebrafish

  3. Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration after SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    adult zebrafish (Specific Aim 1). We also will examine in vivo the role of PTP σ in inhibition of axon regeneration (Specific Aim 2). In addition, we...AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-11-1-0645 TITLE: Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration ... Regeneration after SCI 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-11-1-0645 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d. PROJECT NUMBER Jeffrey Alan Plunkett, Ph.D

  4. Modality-Specific Axonal Regeneration: Toward Selective Regenerative Neural Interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Lotfi, Parisa; Garde, Kshitija; Chouhan, Amit K.; Bengali, Ebrahim; Romero-Ortega, Mario I.

    2011-01-01

    Regenerative peripheral nerve interfaces have been proposed as viable alternatives for the natural control of robotic prosthetic devices. However, sensory and motor axons at the neural interface are of mixed sub-modality types, which difficult the specific recording from motor axons and the eliciting of precise sensory modalities through selective stimulation. Here we evaluated the possibility of using type specific neurotrophins to preferentially entice the regeneration of defined axonal populations from transected peripheral nerves into separate compartments. Segregation of mixed sensory fibers from dorsal root ganglion neurons was evaluated in vitro by compartmentalized diffusion delivery of nerve growth factor (NGF) and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), to preferentially entice the growth of TrkA+ nociceptive and TrkC+ proprioceptive subsets of sensory neurons, respectively. The average axon length in the NGF channel increased 2.5-fold compared to that in saline or NT-3, whereas the number of branches increased threefold in the NT-3 channels. These results were confirmed using a 3D “Y”-shaped in vitro assay showing that the arm containing NGF was able to entice a fivefold increase in axonal length of unbranched fibers. To address if such segregation can be enticed in vivo, a “Y”-shaped tubing was used to allow regeneration of the transected adult rat sciatic nerve into separate compartments filled with either NFG or NT-3. A significant increase in the number of CGRP+ pain fibers were attracted toward the sural nerve, while N-52+ large-diameter axons were observed in the tibial and NT-3 compartments. This study demonstrates the guided enrichment of sensory axons in specific regenerative chambers, and supports the notion that neurotrophic factors can be used to segregate sensory and perhaps motor axons in separate peripheral interfaces. PMID:22016734

  5. Molecular Determinants Fundamental to Axon Regeneration after SCI

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-01

    Figure 10. Zebrafish Spinal cord transection. Isolated spinal column of transected zebrafish spinal cord (rostral to left), panel A. Arrows...mammalian spinal cord, axon regeneration is frustrated by inhibitors such as chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs) expressed by reactive astrocytes...present at the injury site. In adult zebrafish, Danio rerio, some brainstem neuronsare able to grow their axon beyond a spinal cord injury, even

  6. Magnetic Resonance Characterization of Axonal Response to Spinal Cord Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-10-01

    proper diagnosis and treatment. Magnetic resonance imaging ( MRI ) is routinely performed in patients and provides valuable information about cord edema and...novel MRI methods to the problem of assessment of axonal loss, axonal diameter distribution, and myelin loss (q-space imaging (QSI) and ultra-short...echo-time (UTE) MRI ) first on animal specimens and then on human subjects. During the final period of the project the focus of the research was on the

  7. Axonal Noise as a Source of Synaptic Variability

    PubMed Central

    Neishabouri, Ali; Faisal, A. Aldo

    2014-01-01

    Post-synaptic potential (PSP) variability is typically attributed to mechanisms inside synapses, yet recent advances in experimental methods and biophysical understanding have led us to reconsider the role of axons as highly reliable transmission channels. We show that in many thin axons of our brain, the action potential (AP) waveform and thus the Ca++ signal controlling vesicle release at synapses will be significantly affected by the inherent variability of ion channel gating. We investigate how and to what extent fluctuations in the AP waveform explain observed PSP variability. Using both biophysical theory and stochastic simulations of central and peripheral nervous system axons from vertebrates and invertebrates, we show that channel noise in thin axons (<1 µm diameter) causes random fluctuations in AP waveforms. AP height and width, both experimentally characterised parameters of post-synaptic response amplitude, vary e.g. by up to 20 mV and 0.5 ms while a single AP propagates in C-fibre axons. We show how AP height and width variabilities increase with a ¾ power-law as diameter decreases and translate these fluctuations into post-synaptic response variability using biophysical data and models of synaptic transmission. We find for example that for mammalian unmyelinated axons with 0.2 µm diameter (matching cerebellar parallel fibres) axonal noise alone can explain half of the PSP variability in cerebellar synapses. We conclude that axonal variability may have considerable impact on synaptic response variability. Thus, in many experimental frameworks investigating synaptic transmission through paired-cell recordings or extracellular stimulation of presynaptic neurons, causes of variability may have been confounded. We thereby show how bottom-up aggregation of molecular noise sources contributes to our understanding of variability observed at higher levels of biological organisation. PMID:24809823

  8. Spinal irradiation does not inhibit distal axonal sprouting

    SciTech Connect

    Pamphlett, R.S.

    1988-05-01

    In an attempt to determine the relative importance of the nerve cell body and of the axon in initiating and controlling axonal regeneration, nerve cell bodies were irradiated and the ability of the distal axon to sprout was examined. Mice were subjected to either 25 or 50 Gray (Gy) of x-irradiation localized to the lumbar spinal cord. After times varying from 1 day to 6 months after irradiation, a sublethal dose of botulinum toxin (BoTx) was injected into the calf muscles of one leg. The soleus muscle was examined histologically after times varying from 1 week to 6 months after injection, and BoTx-induced ultraterminal axonal sprouting was assessed by the number of motor endplates showing sprouts, the length of the sprouts, and the long term endplate morphology. Apart from some irradiated subgroups having slightly shorter sprout lengths, no significant differences were found between irradiated and nonirradiated groups. The results suggest either that the processes in the nerve cell body responsible for initiating and supporting axonal growth are resistant to large doses of irradiation, or that growth regulatory mechanisms in the distal axon are under local control.

  9. Axon guidance mechanisms for establishment of callosal connections.

    PubMed

    Nishikimi, Mitsuaki; Oishi, Koji; Nakajima, Kazunori

    2013-01-01

    Numerous studies have investigated the formation of interhemispheric connections which are involved in high-ordered functions of the cerebral cortex in eutherian animals, including humans. The development of callosal axons, which transfer and integrate information between the right/left hemispheres and represent the most prominent commissural system, must be strictly regulated. From the beginning of their growth, until reaching their targets in the contralateral cortex, the callosal axons are guided mainly by two environmental cues: (1) the midline structures and (2) neighboring? axons. Recent studies have shown the importance of axona guidance by such cues and the underlying molecular mechanisms. In this paper, we review these guidance mechanisms during the development of the callosal neurons. Midline populations express and secrete guidance molecules, and "pioneer" axons as well as interactions between the medial and lateral axons are also involved in the axon pathfinding of the callosal neurons. Finally, we describe callosal dysgenesis in humans and mice, that results from a disruption of these navigational mechanisms.

  10. Axon morphology at the lamina cribrosa in monkey eyes.

    PubMed

    Radius, R L; Klewin, K M

    1986-01-01

    The eyes of 8 monkeys (Aotus trivirgatus) were studied. The mean cross-section area and the least diameter of axon cylinders were calculated from measurements made by computer assisted planimetry of electron photomicrographs of sections through the optic nerve head at the level of the lamina cribrosa. The density of intrabundle connective tissue and glial cell elements in nerve fiber bundles was also calculated. The mean cross-section area and minimum diameter of axons in the temporal part were less than in the nasal part of the nerve. The values for axons in the superior and inferior parts of the nerve were intermediate. A similar pattern of increasing dimensions was seen in axons from the more axial nerve compared to neurons in the more circumferential nerve sectors. The density of the intrabundle, nonaxonal tissue elements did not differ significantly across the nerve. Although axon dimensions may play some role in defining the vulnerability of neuronal tissue to a pressure insult, the results of this anatomic investigation do not support the hypothesis that differences in axonal distribution by size across the nerve section define the regional vulnerability of the nerve head to elevated intraocular pressure.

  11. Axons degenerate in the absence of mitochondria in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Rawson, Randi L; Yam, Lung; Weimer, Robby M; Bend, Eric G; Hartwieg, Erika; Horvitz, H Robert; Clark, Scott G; Jorgensen, Erik M

    2014-03-31

    Many neurodegenerative disorders are associated with mitochondrial defects [1-3]. Mitochondria can play an active role in degeneration by releasing reactive oxygen species and apoptotic factors [4-7]. Alternatively, mitochondria can protect axons from stress and insults, for example by buffering calcium [8]. Recent studies manipulating mitochondria lend support to both of these models [9-13]. Here, we identify a C. elegans mutant, ric-7, in which mitochondria are unable to exit the neuron cell bodies, similar to the kinesin-1/unc-116 mutant. When axons lacking mitochondria are cut with a laser, they rapidly degenerate. Some neurons even spontaneously degenerate in ric-7 mutants. Degeneration can be suppressed by forcing mitochondria into the axons of the mutants. The protective effect of mitochondria is also observed in the wild-type: a majority of axon fragments containing a mitochondrion survive axotomy, whereas those lacking mitochondria degenerate. Thus, mitochondria are not required for axon degeneration and serve a protective role in C. elegans axons.

  12. Myelin vs axon abnormalities in white matter in bipolar disorder.

    PubMed

    Lewandowski, Kathryn E; Ongür, Dost; Sperry, Sarah H; Cohen, Bruce M; Sehovic, Selma; Goldbach, Jacqueline R; Du, Fei

    2015-03-13

    White matter (WM) abnormalities are among the most commonly reported neuroimaging findings in bipolar disorder. Nonetheless, the specific nature and pathophysiology of these abnormalities remain unclear. Use of a combination of magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) and diffusion tensor spectroscopy (DTS) permits examination of myelin and axon abnormalities separately. We aimed to examine myelination and axon geometry in euthymic patients with bipolar disorder with psychosis (BDP) by combining these two complementary noninvasive MRI techniques. We applied a combined MRI approach using MTR to study myelin content and DTS to study metabolite (N-acetylaspartate, NAA) diffusion within axons in patients with BDP (n=21) and healthy controls (n=24). Data were collected from a 1 × 3 × 3-cm voxel within the right prefrontal cortex WM at 4 Tesla. Clinical and cognitive data were examined in association with MTR and DTS data. MTR was significantly reduced in BDP, suggesting reduced myelin content. The apparent diffusion coefficient of NAA did not differ from healthy controls, suggesting no changes in axon geometry in patients with BDP. These findings suggest that patients with BDP exhibit reduced myelin content, but no changes in axon geometry compared with controls. These findings are in contrast with our recent findings, using the same techniques, in patients with schizophrenia (SZ), which suggest both myelination and axon abnormalities in SZ. This difference may indicate that alterations in WM in BDP may have unique causes and may be less extensive than WM abnormalities seen in SZ.

  13. Developmental time windows for axon growth influence neuronal network topology.

    PubMed

    Lim, Sol; Kaiser, Marcus

    2015-04-01

    Early brain connectivity development consists of multiple stages: birth of neurons, their migration and the subsequent growth of axons and dendrites. Each stage occurs within a certain period of time depending on types of neurons and cortical layers. Forming synapses between neurons either by growing axons starting at similar times for all neurons (much-overlapped time windows) or at different time points (less-overlapped) may affect the topological and spatial properties of neuronal networks. Here, we explore the extreme cases of axon formation during early development, either starting at the same time for all neurons (parallel, i.e., maximally overlapped time windows) or occurring for each neuron separately one neuron after another (serial, i.e., no overlaps in time windows). For both cases, the number of potential and established synapses remained comparable. Topological and spatial properties, however, differed: Neurons that started axon growth early on in serial growth achieved higher out-degrees, higher local efficiency and longer axon lengths while neurons demonstrated more homogeneous connectivity patterns for parallel growth. Second, connection probability decreased more rapidly with distance between neurons for parallel growth than for serial growth. Third, bidirectional connections were more numerous for parallel growth. Finally, we tested our predictions with C. elegans data. Together, this indicates that time windows for axon growth influence the topological and spatial properties of neuronal networks opening up the possibility to a posteriori estimate developmental mechanisms based on network properties of a developed network.

  14. Myelin vs Axon Abnormalities in White Matter in Bipolar Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Lewandowski, Kathryn E; Ongür, Dost; Sperry, Sarah H; Cohen, Bruce M; Sehovic, Selma; Goldbach, Jacqueline R; Du, Fei

    2015-01-01

    White matter (WM) abnormalities are among the most commonly reported neuroimaging findings in bipolar disorder. Nonetheless, the specific nature and pathophysiology of these abnormalities remain unclear. Use of a combination of magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) and diffusion tensor spectroscopy (DTS) permits examination of myelin and axon abnormalities separately. We aimed to examine myelination and axon geometry in euthymic patients with bipolar disorder with psychosis (BDP) by combining these two complementary noninvasive MRI techniques. We applied a combined MRI approach using MTR to study myelin content and DTS to study metabolite (N-acetylaspartate, NAA) diffusion within axons in patients with BDP (n=21) and healthy controls (n=24). Data were collected from a 1 × 3 × 3-cm voxel within the right prefrontal cortex WM at 4 Tesla. Clinical and cognitive data were examined in association with MTR and DTS data. MTR was significantly reduced in BDP, suggesting reduced myelin content. The apparent diffusion coefficient of NAA did not differ from healthy controls, suggesting no changes in axon geometry in patients with BDP. These findings suggest that patients with BDP exhibit reduced myelin content, but no changes in axon geometry compared with controls. These findings are in contrast with our recent findings, using the same techniques, in patients with schizophrenia (SZ), which suggest both myelination and axon abnormalities in SZ. This difference may indicate that alterations in WM in BDP may have unique causes and may be less extensive than WM abnormalities seen in SZ. PMID:25409595

  15. Parametric Probability Distribution Functions for Axon Diameters of Corpus Callosum.

    PubMed

    Sepehrband, Farshid; Alexander, Daniel C; Clark, Kristi A; Kurniawan, Nyoman D; Yang, Zhengyi; Reutens, David C

    2016-01-01

    Axon diameter is an important neuroanatomical characteristic of the nervous system that alters in the course of neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis. Axon diameters vary, even within a fiber bundle, and are not normally distributed. An accurate distribution function is therefore beneficial, either to describe axon diameters that are obtained from a direct measurement technique (e.g., microscopy), or to infer them indirectly (e.g., using diffusion-weighted MRI). The gamma distribution is a common choice for this purpose (particularly for the inferential approach) because it resembles the distribution profile of measured axon diameters which has been consistently shown to be non-negative and right-skewed. In this study we compared a wide range of parametric probability distribution functions against empirical data obtained from electron microscopy images. We observed that the gamma distribution fails to accurately describe the main characteristics of the axon diameter distribution, such as location and scale of the mode and the profile of distribution tails. We also found that the generalized extreme value distribution consistently fitted the measured distribution better than other distribution functions. This suggests that there may be distinct subpopulations of axons in the corpus callosum, each with their own distribution profiles. In addition, we observed that several other distributions outperformed the gamma distribution, yet had the same number of unknown parameters; these were the inverse Gaussian, log normal, log logistic and Birnbaum-Saunders distributions.

  16. Parametric Probability Distribution Functions for Axon Diameters of Corpus Callosum

    PubMed Central

    Sepehrband, Farshid; Alexander, Daniel C.; Clark, Kristi A.; Kurniawan, Nyoman D.; Yang, Zhengyi; Reutens, David C.

    2016-01-01

    Axon diameter is an important neuroanatomical characteristic of the nervous system that alters in the course of neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis. Axon diameters vary, even within a fiber bundle, and are not normally distributed. An accurate distribution function is therefore beneficial, either to describe axon diameters that are obtained from a direct measurement technique (e.g., microscopy), or to infer them indirectly (e.g., using diffusion-weighted MRI). The gamma distribution is a common choice for this purpose (particularly for the inferential approach) because it resembles the distribution profile of measured axon diameters which has been consistently shown to be non-negative and right-skewed. In this study we compared a wide range of parametric probability distribution functions against empirical data obtained from electron microscopy images. We observed that the gamma distribution fails to accurately describe the main characteristics of the axon diameter distribution, such as location and scale of the mode and the profile of distribution tails. We also found that the generalized extreme value distribution consistently fitted the measured distribution better than other distribution functions. This suggests that there may be distinct subpopulations of axons in the corpus callosum, each with their own distribution profiles. In addition, we observed that several other distributions outperformed the gamma distribution, yet had the same number of unknown parameters; these were the inverse Gaussian, log normal, log logistic and Birnbaum-Saunders distributions. PMID:27303273

  17. Spatially coordinated kinase signaling regulates local axon degeneration.

    PubMed

    Chen, Mark; Maloney, Janice A; Kallop, Dara Y; Atwal, Jasvinder K; Tam, Stephen J; Baer, Kristin; Kissel, Holger; Kaminker, Joshua S; Lewcock, Joseph W; Weimer, Robby M; Watts, Ryan J

    2012-09-26

    In addition to being a hallmark of neurodegenerative disease, axon degeneration is used during development of the nervous system to prune unwanted connections. In development, axon degeneration is tightly regulated both temporally and spatially. Here, we provide evidence that degeneration cues are transduced through various kinase pathways functioning in spatially distinct compartments to regulate axon degeneration. Intriguingly, glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3) acts centrally, likely modulating gene expression in the cell body to regulate distally restricted axon degeneration. Through a combination of genetic and pharmacological manipulations, including the generation of an analog-sensitive kinase allele mutant mouse for GSK3β, we show that the β isoform of GSK3, not the α isoform, is essential for developmental axon pruning in vitro and in vivo. Additionally, we identify the dleu2/mir15a/16-1 cluster, previously characterized as a regulator of B-cell proliferation, and the transcription factor tbx6, as likely downstream effectors of GSK3β in axon degeneration.

  18. Cell biology in neuroscience: Cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying axon formation, growth, and branching.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Tommy L; Courchet, Julien; Polleux, Franck

    2013-09-16

    Proper brain wiring during development is pivotal for adult brain function. Neurons display a high degree of polarization both morphologically and functionally, and this polarization requires the segregation of mRNA, proteins, and lipids into the axonal or somatodendritic domains. Recent discoveries have provided insight into many aspects of the cell biology of axonal development including axon specification during neuronal polarization, axon growth, and terminal axon branching during synaptogenesis.

  19. White matter involvement after TBI: Clues to axon and myelin repair capacity.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, Regina C; Mierzwa, Amanda J; Marion, Christina M; Sullivan, Genevieve M

    2016-01-01

    Impact-acceleration forces to the head cause traumatic brain injury (TBI) with damage in white matter tracts comprised of long axons traversing the brain. White matter injury after TBI involves both traumatic axonal injury (TAI) and myelin pathology that evolves throughout the post-injury time course. The axon response to initial mechanical forces and secondary insults follows the process of Wallerian degeneration, which initiates as a potentially reversible phase of intra-axonal damage and proceeds to an irreversible phase of axon fragmentation. Distal to sites of axon disconnection, myelin sheaths remain for prolonged periods, which may activate neuroinflammation and inhibit axon regeneration. In addition to TAI, TBI can cause demyelination of intact axons. These evolving features of axon and myelin pathology also represent opportunities for repair. In experimental TBI, demyelinated axons exhibit remyelination, which can serve to both protect axons and facilitate recovery of function. Myelin remodeling may also contribute to neuroplasticity. Efficient clearance of myelin debris is a potential target to attenuate the progression of chronic pathology. During the early phase of Wallerian degeneration, interventions that prevent the transition from reversible damage to axon disconnection warrant the highest priority, based on the poor regenerative capacity of axons in the CNS. Clinical evaluation of TBI will need to address the challenge of accurately detecting the extent and stage of axon damage. Distinguishing the complex white matter changes associated with axons and myelin is necessary for interpreting advanced neuroimaging approaches and for identifying a broader range of therapeutic opportunities to improve outcome after TBI.

  20. Control of Autophagosome Axonal Retrograde Flux by Presynaptic Activity Unveiled Using Botulinum Neurotoxin Type A

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Tong; Martin, Sally; Papadopulos, Andreas; Harper, Callista B.; Mavlyutov, Timur A.; Niranjan, Dhevahi; Glass, Nick R.; Cooper-White, Justin J.; Sibarita, Jean-Baptiste; Choquet, Daniel; Davletov, Bazbek; Meunier, Frédéric A.

    2015-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin type A (BoNT/A) is a highly potent neurotoxin that elicits flaccid paralysis by enzymatic cleavage of the exocytic machinery component SNAP25 in motor nerve terminals. However, recent evidence suggests that the neurotoxic activity of BoNT/A is not restricted to the periphery, but also reaches the CNS after retrograde axonal transport. Because BoNT/A is internalized in recycling synaptic vesicles, it is unclear which compartment facilitates this transport. Using live-cell confocal and single-molecule imaging of rat hippocampal neurons cultured in microfluidic devices, we show that the activity-dependent uptake of the binding domain of the BoNT/A heavy chain (BoNT/A-Hc) is followed by a delayed increase in retrograde axonal transport of BoNT/A-Hc carriers. Consistent with a role of presynaptic activity in initiating transport of the active toxin, activity-dependent uptake of BoNT/A in the terminal led to a significant increase in SNAP25 cleavage detected in the soma chamber compared with nonstimulated neurons. Surprisingly, most endocytosed BoNT/A-Hc was incorporated into LC3-positive autophagosomes generated in the nerve terminals, which then underwent retrograde transport to the cell soma, where they fused with lysosomes both in vitro and in vivo. Blocking autophagosome formation or acidification with wortmannin or bafilomycin A1, respectively, inhibited the activity-dependent retrograde trafficking of BoNT/A-Hc. Our data demonstrate that both the presynaptic formation of autophagosomes and the initiation of their retrograde trafficking are tightly regulated by presynaptic activity. PMID:25878289

  1. Axonal loss in the multiple sclerosis spinal cord revisited.

    PubMed

    Petrova, N; Carassiti, D; Altmann, D R; Baker, D; Schmierer, K

    2017-04-12

    Preventing chronic disease deterioration is an unmet need in people with multiple sclerosis, where axonal loss is considered a key substrate of disability. Clinically, chronic multiple sclerosis often presents as progressive myelopathy. Spinal cord cross-sectional area assessed using MRI predicts increasing disability and has, by inference, been proposed as an indirect index of axonal degeneration. However, the association between cross-sectional area and axonal loss, and their correlation with demyelination, have never been systematically investigated using human post mortem tissue. We extensively sampled spinal cords of seven women and six men with multiple sclerosis (mean disease duration= 29 years) and five healthy controls to quantify axonal density and its association with demyelination and cross-sectional area. 396 tissue blocks were embedded in paraffin and immuno-stained for myelin basic protein and phosphorylated neurofilaments. Measurements included total cross-sectional area, areas of (i) lateral cortico-spinal tracts, (ii) grey matter, (iii) white matter, (iv) demyelination, and the number of axons within the lateral cortico-spinal tracts. Linear mixed models were used to analyse relationships. In multiple sclerosis cross-sectional area reduction at cervical, thoracic and lumbar levels ranged between 19 and 24% with white (19-24%) and grey (17-21%) matter atrophy contributing equally across levels. Axonal density in multiple sclerosis was lower by 57-62% across all levels and affected all fibres regardless of diameter. Demyelination affected 24-48% of the grey matter, most extensively at the thoracic level, and 11-13% of the white matter, with no significant differences across levels. Disease duration was associated with reduced axonal density, however not with any area index. Significant association was detected between focal demyelination and decreased axonal density. In conclusion, over nearly 30 years multiple sclerosis reduces axonal density by 60

  2. Genetic analyses of roundabout (ROBO) axon guidance receptors in autism.

    PubMed

    Anitha, A; Nakamura, Kazuhiko; Yamada, Kazuo; Suda, Shiro; Thanseem, Ismail; Tsujii, Masatsugu; Iwayama, Yoshimi; Hattori, Eiji; Toyota, Tomoko; Miyachi, Taishi; Iwata, Yasuhide; Suzuki, Katsuaki; Matsuzaki, Hideo; Kawai, Masayoshi; Sekine, Yoshimoto; Tsuchiya, Kenji; Sugihara, Gen-Ichi; Ouchi, Yasuomi; Sugiyama, Toshiro; Koizumi, Keita; Higashida, Haruhiro; Takei, Nori; Yoshikawa, Takeo; Mori, Norio

    2008-10-05

    Autism is a pervasive developmental disorder diagnosed in early childhood. Abnormalities of serotonergic neurotransmission have been reported in autism. Serotonin transporter (SERT) modulates serotonin levels, and is a major therapeutic target in autism. Factors that regulate SERT expression might be implicated in the pathophysiology of autism. One candidate SERT regulatory protein is the roundabout axon guidance molecule, ROBO. SerT expression in Drosophila is regulated by robo; it plays a vital role in mammalian neurodevelopment also. Here, we examined the associations of ROBO3 and ROBO4 with autism, in a trio association study using DNA from 252 families recruited to AGRE. Four SNPs of ROBO3 (rs3923890, P = 0.023; rs7925879, P = 0.017; rs4606490, P = 0.033; and rs3802905, P = 0.049) and a single SNP of ROBO4 (rs6590109, P = 0.009) showed associations with autism; the A/A genotype of rs3923890 showed lower ADI-R_A scores, which reflect social interaction. Significant haplotype associations were also observed for ROBO3 and ROBO4. We further compared the mRNA expressions of ROBO1, ROBO2, ROBO3, and ROBO4 in the lymphocytes of 19 drug-naïve autistic patients and 20 age- and sex-matched controls. Expressions of ROBO1 (P = 0.018) and ROBO2 (P = 0.023) were significantly reduced in the autistic group; the possibility of using the altered expressions of ROBO as peripheral markers for autism, may be explored. In conclusion, we suggest a possible role of ROBO in the pathogenesis of autism. Abnormalities of ROBO may lead to autism either by interfering with serotonergic system, or by disrupting neurodevelopment. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report relating ROBO with autism.

  3. Differential conduction block in branches of a bifurcating axon.

    PubMed Central

    Grossman, Y; Parnas, I; Spira, M E

    1979-01-01

    1. Propagation of action potentials at high frequency was studied in a branching axon of the lobster by means of simultaneous intracellular recording both before and after the branch point. 2. Although the branching axon studied has a geometrical ratio close to one (perfect impedance matching) conduction across the branch point failed at stimulation frequencies above 30 Hz. 3. The block of conduction after high frequency stimulation occurred at the branch point per se. The parent axon and daughter branches continued to conduct action potentials. 4. Conduction block after high frequency stimulation appeared first in the thicker daughter branch and only later in the thin branch. 5. With high frequency stimulation there was a 10-15% reduction in amplitude of the action potential in the parent axon, a corresponding decrease in the rate of rise of the action potential, a 25-30% decrease in conduction velocity, marked increase in threshold and prolongation of the refractory period. In addition the membrane was depolarized by 1-3 mV. 6. Measurements of the membrane current using the patch clamp technique showed a large decrease in the phase of inward current associated with the action potential, before the branching point. 7. The small membrane depolarization seen after high frequency stimulation is not the sole cause of the conduction block. Imposed prolonged membrane depolarization (8 mV for 120 sec) was insufficient to produce conduction block. 8. In vivo chronic extracellular recordings from the main nerve bundle (which contains the parent axon) and the large daughter branch revealed that: (a) the duration and frequency of trains of action potentials along the axons exceeded those used in the isolated nerve experiments and (b) conduction failure in the large daughter branch could be induced in the whole animal by electrical stimulation of the main branch as in the isolated preparation. 9. Possible mechanisms underlying block of conduction after high frequency

  4. Pre-target axon sorting in the avian auditory brainstem

    PubMed Central

    Kashima, Daniel T.; Rubel, Edwin W; Seidl, Armin H.

    2012-01-01

    Topographic organization of neurons is a hallmark of brain structure. The establishment of the connections between topographically organized brain regions has attracted much experimental attention and it is widely accepted that molecular cues guide outgrowing axons to their targets in order to construct topographic maps. In a number of systems afferent axons are organized topographically along their trajectory as well and it has been suggested that this pre-target sorting contributes to map formation. Neurons in auditory regions of the brain are arranged according to their best frequency (BF), the sound frequency they respond to optimally. This BF changes predictably with position along the so-called tonotopic axis. In the avian auditory brainstem, the tonotopic organization of the second- and third-order auditory neurons in nucleus magnocellularis (NM) and nucleus laminaris (NL) has been well described. In this study we examine whether the decussating NM axons forming the crossed dorsal cochlear tract (XDCT) and innervating the contralateral NL are arranged in a systematic manner. We electroporated dye into cells in different frequency regions of NM to anterogradely label their axons in the XDCT. The placement of dye in NM was compared to the location of labeled axons in XDCT. Our results show that NM axons in XDCT are organized in a precise tonotopic manner along the rostrocaudal axis, spanning over the entire rostrocaudal extent of both the origin and target nuclei. We propose that in the avian auditory brainstem, this pre-target axon sorting contributes to tonotopic map formation in NL. PMID:23239056

  5. Wnt5a Regulates Midbrain Dopaminergic Axon Growth and Guidance

    PubMed Central

    Blakely, Brette D.; Bye, Christopher R.; Fernando, Chathurini V.; Horne, Malcolm K.; Macheda, Maria L.; Stacker, Steven A.; Arenas, Ernest; Parish, Clare L.

    2011-01-01

    During development, precise temporal and spatial gradients are responsible for guiding axons to their appropriate targets. Within the developing ventral midbrain (VM) the cues that guide dopaminergic (DA) axons to their forebrain targets remain to be fully elucidated. Wnts are morphogens that have been identified as axon guidance molecules. Several Wnts are expressed in the VM where they regulate the birth of DA neurons. Here, we describe that a precise temporo-spatial expression of Wnt5a accompanies the development of nigrostriatal projections by VM DA neurons. In mice at E11.5, Wnt5a is expressed in the VM where it was found to promote DA neurite and axonal growth in VM primary cultures. By E14.5, when DA axons are approaching their striatal target, Wnt5a causes DA neurite retraction in primary cultures. Co-culture of VM explants with Wnt5a-overexpressing cell aggregates revealed that Wnt5a is capable of repelling DA neurites. Antagonism experiments revealed that the effects of Wnt5a are mediated by the Frizzled receptors and by the small GTPase, Rac1 (a component of the non-canonical Wnt planar cell polarity pathway). Moreover, the effects were specific as they could be blocked by Wnt5a antibody, sFRPs and RYK-Fc. The importance of Wnt5a in DA axon morphogenesis was further verified in Wnt5a−/− mice, where fasciculation of the medial forebrain bundle (MFB) as well as the density of DA neurites in the MFB and striatal terminals were disrupted. Thus, our results identify a novel role of Wnt5a in DA axon growth and guidance. PMID:21483795

  6. Axon Stretch Growth: The Mechanotransduction of Neuronal Growth

    PubMed Central

    Loverde, Joseph R.; Tolentino, Rosa E.; Pfister, Bryan J.

    2011-01-01

    During pre-synaptic embryonic development, neuronal processes traverse short distances to reach their targets via growth cone. Over time, neuronal somata are separated from their axon terminals due to skeletal growth of the enlarging organism (Weiss 1941; Gray, Hukkanen et al. 1992). This mechanotransduction induces a secondary mode of neuronal growth capable of accommodating continual elongation of the axon (Bray 1984; Heidemann and Buxbaum 1994; Heidemann, Lamoureux et al. 1995; Pfister, Iwata et al. 2004). Axon Stretch Growth (ASG) is conceivably a central factor in the maturation of short embryonic processes into the long nerves and white matter tracts characteristic of the adult nervous system. To study ASG in vitro, we engineered bioreactors to apply tension to the short axonal processes of neuronal cultures (Loverde, Ozoka et al. 2011). Here, we detail the methods we use to prepare bioreactors and conduct ASG. First, within each stretching lane of the bioreactor, neurons are plated upon a micro-manipulated towing substrate. Next, neurons regenerate their axonal processes, via growth cone extension, onto a stationary substrate. Finally, stretch growth is performed by towing the plated cell bodies away from the axon terminals adhered to the stationary substrate; recapitulating skeletal growth after growth cone extension. Previous work has shown that ASG of embryonic rat dorsal root ganglia neurons are capable of unprecedented growth rates up to 10mm/day, reaching lengths of up to 10cm; while concurrently resulting in increased axonal diameters (Smith, Wolf et al. 2001; Pfister, Iwata et al. 2004; Pfister, Bonislawski et al. 2006; Pfister, Iwata et al. 2006; Smith 2009). This is in dramatic contrast to regenerative growth cone extension (in absence of mechanical stimuli) where growth rates average 1mm/day with successful regeneration limited to lengths of less than 3cm (Fu and Gordon 1997; Pfister, Gordon et al. 2011). Accordingly, further study of ASG may help

  7. Differential conduction block in branches of a bifurcating axon.

    PubMed

    Grossman, Y; Parnas, I; Spira, M E

    1979-10-01

    1. Propagation of action potentials at high frequency was studied in a branching axon of the lobster by means of simultaneous intracellular recording both before and after the branch point. 2. Although the branching axon studied has a geometrical ratio close to one (perfect impedance matching) conduction across the branch point failed at stimulation frequencies above 30 Hz. 3. The block of conduction after high frequency stimulation occurred at the branch point per se. The parent axon and daughter branches continued to conduct action potentials. 4. Conduction block after high frequency stimulation appeared first in the thicker daughter branch and only later in the thin branch. 5. With high frequency stimulation there was a 10-15% reduction in amplitude of the action potential in the parent axon, a corresponding decrease in the rate of rise of the action potential, a 25-30% decrease in conduction velocity, marked increase in threshold and prolongation of the refractory period. In addition the membrane was depolarized by 1-3 mV. 6. Measurements of the membrane current using the patch clamp technique showed a large decrease in the phase of inward current associated with the action potential, before the branching point. 7. The small membrane depolarization seen after high frequency stimulation is not the sole cause of the conduction block. Imposed prolonged membrane depolarization (8 mV for 120 sec) was insufficient to produce conduction block. 8. In vivo chronic extracellular recordings from the main nerve bundle (which contains the parent axon) and the large daughter branch revealed that: (a) the duration and frequency of trains of action potentials along the axons exceeded those used in the isolated nerve experiments and (b) conduction failure in the large daughter branch could be induced in the whole animal by electrical stimulation of the main branch as in the isolated preparation. 9. Possible mechanisms underlying block of conduction after high frequency

  8. Amyloid-beta expression in retrosplenial cortex of triple transgenic mice: relationship to cholinergic axonal afferents from medial septum.

    PubMed

    Robertson, R T; Baratta, J; Yu, J; LaFerla, F M

    2009-12-15

    Triple transgenic (3xTg-AD) mice harboring the presenilin 1, amyloid precursor protein, and tau transgenes (Oddo et al., 2003b) display prominent levels of amyloid-beta (Abeta) immunoreactivity in forebrain regions. The Abeta immunoreactivity is first seen intracellularly in neurons and later as extracellular plaque deposits. The present study examined Abeta immunoreactivity that occurs in layer III of the granular division of retrosplenial cortex (RSg). This pattern of Abeta immunoreactivity in layer III of RSg develops relatively late, and is seen in animals older than 14 months. The appearance of the Abeta immunoreactivity is similar to an axonal terminal field and thus may offer a unique opportunity to study the relationship between afferent projections and the formation of Abeta deposits. Axonal tract tracing techniques demonstrated that the pattern of axon terminal labeling in layer III of RSg, following placement of DiI in medial septum, is remarkably similar to the pattern of cholinergic axons in RSg, as detected by acetylcholinesterase histochemical staining, choline acetyltransferase immunoreactivity, or p75 receptor immunoreactivity; this pattern also is strikingly similar to the band of Abeta immunoreactivity. In animals sustaining early damage to the medial septal nucleus (prior to the advent of Abeta immunoreactivity), the band of Abeta in layer III of RSg does not develop; the corresponding band of cholinergic markers also is eliminated. In older animals (after the appearance of the Abeta immunoreactivity) damage to cholinergic afferents by electrolytic lesions, immunotoxin lesions, or cutting the cingulate bundle, result in a rapid loss of the cholinergic markers and a slower reduction of Abeta immunoreactivity. These results suggest that the septal cholinergic axonal projections transport Abeta or amyloid precursor protein (APP) to layer III of RSg.

  9. Schwann cell-derived exosomes enhance axonal regeneration in the peripheral nervous system.

    PubMed

    Lopez-Verrilli, María Alejandra; Picou, Frederic; Court, Felipe A

    2013-11-01

    Axonal regeneration in the peripheral nervous system is greatly supported by Schwann cells (SCs). After nerve injury, SCs dedifferentiate to a progenitor-like state and efficiently guide axons to their original target tissues. Contact and soluble factors participate in the crosstalk between SCs and axons during axonal regeneration. Here we show that dedifferentiated SCs secrete nano-vesicles known as exosomes which are specifically internalized by axons. Surprisingly, SC-derived exosomes markedly increase axonal regeneration in vitro and enhance regeneration after sciatic nerve injury in vivo. Exosomes shift the growth cone morphology to a pro-regenerating phenotype and decrease the activity of the GTPase RhoA, involved in growth cone collapse and axon retraction. Altogether, our work identifies a novel mechanism by which SCs communicate with neighboring axons during regenerative processes. We propose that SC exosomes represent an important mechanism by which these cells locally support axonal maintenance and regeneration after nerve damage.

  10. Myelinated sensory and alpha motor axon regeneration in peripheral nerve neuromas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macias, M. Y.; Lehman, C. T.; Sanger, J. R.; Riley, D. A.

    1998-01-01

    Histochemical staining for carbonic anhydrase and cholinesterase (CE) activities was used to analyze sensory and motor axon regeneration, respectively, during neuroma formation in transected and tube-encapsulated peripheral nerves. Median-ulnar and sciatic nerves in the rodent model permitted testing whether a 4 cm greater distance of the motor neuron soma from axotomy site or intrinsic differences between motor and sensory neurons influenced regeneration and neuroma formation 10, 30, and 90 days later. Ventral root radiculotomy confirmed that CE-stained axons were 97% alpha motor axons. Distance significantly delayed axon regeneration. When distance was negligible, sensory axons grew out sooner than motor axons, but motor axons regenerated to a greater quantity. These results indicate regeneration differences between axon subtypes and suggest more extensive branching of motor axons within the neuroma. Thus, both distance from injury site to soma and inherent motor and sensory differences should be considered in peripheral nerve repair strategies.

  11. Regulation of Microtubule Dynamics in Axon Regeneration: Insights from C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Tang, Ngang Heok; Chisholm, Andrew D

    2016-01-01

    The capacity of an axon to regenerate is regulated by its external environment and by cell-intrinsic factors. Studies in a variety of organisms suggest that alterations in axonal microtubule (MT) dynamics have potent effects on axon regeneration. We review recent findings on the regulation of MT dynamics during axon regeneration, focusing on the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. In C. elegans the dual leucine zipper kinase (DLK) promotes axon regeneration, whereas the exchange factor for Arf6 (EFA-6) inhibits axon regeneration. Both DLK and EFA-6 respond to injury and control axon regeneration in part via MT dynamics. How the DLK and EFA-6 pathways are related is a topic of active investigation, as is the mechanism by which EFA-6 responds to axonal injury. We evaluate potential candidates, such as the MT affinity-regulating kinase PAR-1/MARK, in regulation of EFA-6 and axonal MT dynamics in regeneration.

  12. Regulation of Microtubule Dynamics in Axon Regeneration: Insights from C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Ngang Heok; Chisholm, Andrew D.

    2016-01-01

    The capacity of an axon to regenerate is regulated by its external environment and by cell-intrinsic factors. Studies in a variety of organisms suggest that alterations in axonal microtubule (MT) dynamics have potent effects on axon regeneration. We review recent findings on the regulation of MT dynamics during axon regeneration, focusing on the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. In C. elegans the dual leucine zipper kinase (DLK) promotes axon regeneration, whereas the exchange factor for Arf6 (EFA-6) inhibits axon regeneration. Both DLK and EFA-6 respond to injury and control axon regeneration in part via MT dynamics. How the DLK and EFA-6 pathways are related is a topic of active investigation, as is the mechanism by which EFA-6 responds to axonal injury. We evaluate potential candidates, such as the MT affinity-regulating kinase PAR-1/MARK, in regulation of EFA-6 and axonal MT dynamics in regeneration. PMID:27350865

  13. Cortical Interneuron Subtypes Vary in Their Axonal Action Potential Properties

    PubMed Central

    Casale, Amanda E.; Foust, Amanda J.; Bal, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    The role of interneurons in cortical microcircuits is strongly influenced by their passive and active electrical properties. Although different types of interneurons exhibit unique electrophysiological properties recorded at the soma, it is not yet clear whether these differences are also manifested in other neuronal compartments. To address this question, we have used voltage-sensitive dye to image the propagation of action potentials into the fine collaterals of axons and dendrites in two of the largest cortical interneuron subtypes in the mouse: fast-spiking interneurons, which are typically basket or chandelier neurons; and somatostatin containing interneurons, which are typically regular spiking Martinotti cells. We found that fast-spiking and somatostatin-expressing interneurons differed in their electrophysiological characteristics along their entire dendrosomatoaxonal extent. The action potentials generated in the somata and axons, including axon collaterals, of somatostatin-expressing interneurons are significantly broader than those generated in the same compartments of fast-spiking inhibitory interneurons. In addition, action potentials back-propagated into the dendrites of somatostatin-expressing interneurons much more readily than fast-spiking interneurons. Pharmacological investigations suggested that axonal action potential repolarization in both cell types depends critically upon Kv1 channels, whereas the axonal and somatic action potentials of somatostatin-expressing interneurons also depend on BK Ca2+-activated K+ channels. These results indicate that the two broad classes of interneurons studied here have expressly different subcellular physiological properties, allowing them to perform unique computational roles in cortical circuit operations. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Neurons in the cerebral cortex are of two major types: excitatory and inhibitory. The proper balance of excitation and inhibition in the brain is critical for its operation. Neurons

  14. Corticothalamic Axons Are Essential for Retinal Ganglion Cell Axon Targeting to the Mouse Dorsal Lateral Geniculate Nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Shanks, James A.; Ito, Shinya; Schaevitz, Laura; Yamada, Jena; Chen, Bin; Litke, Alan

    2016-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) relay information about the outside world to multiple subcortical targets within the brain. This information is either used to dictate reflexive behaviors or relayed to the visual cortex for further processing. Many subcortical visual nuclei also receive descending inputs from projection neurons in the visual cortex. Most areas receive inputs from layer 5 cortical neurons in the visual cortex but one exception is the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN), which receives layer 6 inputs and is also the only RGC target that sends direct projections to the cortex. Here we ask how visual system development and function changes in mice that develop without a cortex. We find that the development of a cortex is essential for RGC axons to terminate in the dLGN, but is not required for targeting RGC axons to other subcortical nuclei. RGC axons also fail to target to the dLGN in mice that specifically lack cortical layer 6 projections to the dLGN. Finally, we show that when mice develop without a cortex they can still perform a number of vision-dependent tasks. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) is a sensory thalamic relay area that receives feedforward inputs from retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in the retina, and feed back inputs from layer 6 neurons in the visual cortex. In this study we examined genetically manipulated mice that develop without a cortex or without cortical layer 6 axonal projections, and find that RGC axons fail to project to the dLGN. Other RGC recipient areas, such as the superior colliculus and suprachiasmatic nucleus, are targeted normally. These results provide support for a new mechanism of target selection that may be specific to the thalamus, whereby descending cortical axons provide an activity that promotes feedforward targeting of RGC axons to the dLGN. PMID:27170123

  15. A novel technique using hydrophilic polymers to promote axonal fusion.

    PubMed

    Bamba, Ravinder; Riley, D Colton; Kelm, Nathaniel D; Does, Mark D; Dortch, Richard D; Thayer, Wesley P

    2016-04-01

    The management of traumatic peripheral nerve injury remains a considerable concern for clinicians. With minimal innovations in surgical technique and a limited number of specialists trained to treat peripheral nerve injury, outcomes of surgical intervention have been unpredictable. The inability to manipulate the pathophysiology of nerve injury (i.e., Wallerian degeneration) has left scientists and clinicians depending on the slow and lengthy process of axonal regeneration (~1 mm/day). When axons are severed, the endings undergo calcium-mediated plasmalemmal sealing, which limits the ability of the axon to be primarily repaired. Polythethylene glycol (PEG) in combination with a bioengineered process overcomes the inability to fuse axons. The mechanism for PEG axonal fusion is not clearly understood, but multiple studies have shown that a providing a calcium-free environment is essential to the process known as PEG fusion. The proposed mechanism is PEG-induced lipid bilayer fusion by removing the hydration barrier surrounding the axolemma and reducing the activation energy required for membrane fusion to occur. This review highlights PEG fusion, its past and current studies, and future directions in PEG fusion.

  16. Axon Regeneration Genes Identified by RNAi Screening in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Nix, Paola; Hammarlund, Marc; Hauth, Linda; Lachnit, Martina; Jorgensen, Erik M.

    2014-01-01

    Axons of the mammalian CNS lose the ability to regenerate soon after development due to both an inhibitory CNS environment and the loss of cell-intrinsic factors necessary for regeneration. The complex molecular events required for robust regeneration of mature neurons are not fully understood, particularly in vivo. To identify genes affecting axon regeneration in Caenorhabditis elegans, we performed both an RNAi-based screen for defective motor axon regeneration in unc-70/β-spectrin mutants and a candidate gene screen. From these screens, we identified at least 50 conserved genes with growth-promoting or growth-inhibiting functions. Through our analysis of mutants, we shed new light on certain aspects of regeneration, including the role of β-spectrin and membrane dynamics, the antagonistic activity of MAP kinase signaling pathways, and the role of stress in promoting axon regeneration. Many gene candidates had not previously been associated with axon regeneration and implicate new pathways of interest for therapeutic intervention. PMID:24403161

  17. Axonal sorting of Kir3.3 defines a GABA-containing neuron in the CA3 region of rodent hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Grosse, Gisela; Eulitz, Dirk; Thiele, Theodor; Pahner, Ingrid; Schröter, Sascha; Takamori, Shigeo; Grosse, Johannes; Wickman, Kevin; Tapp, Rosemarie; Veh, Rüdiger W; Ottersen, Ole Petter; Ahnert-Hilger, Gudrun

    2003-11-01

    Hippocampal interneurons comprise a heterogeneous group of locally acting GABAergic neurons. In addition to their variability in cotransmitter content and receptor profile, they express a variety of potassium channels that specify their individual properties. Here we describe a new type of large GABA-containing neuron in rodent hippocampus that is characterized by an axonal sorting of the potassium channel Kir3.3. The parent cell bodies of the Kir3.3-positive axons are located in CA3, as assessed by primary cultures derived from hippocampal subareas. At postnatal day 14 these neurons appear at the border between stratum oriens and stratum pyramidale of CA3, from where their axons pass through stratum pyramidale to join the mossy fiber tract. In adult hippocampus, high levels of Kir3.3 channel protein exist in axons that run with the mossy fiber tract. Kir3.3 and the vesicular GABA transporter could be identified in subpopulations of large synaptic terminals that probably derive from Kir3.3 neurons. Axonal sorting of Kir3.3 appears to be typical of a group of large inhibitory neurons, including Purkinje cells and a novel type of interneuron in CA3. Kir3.3 neurons might modulate the activity of CA3 circuitries and consequently memory processing in the hippocampus.

  18. An analytical solution describing the propagation of positive injury signals in an axon: effect of dynein velocity distribution.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, A V

    2013-01-01

    A model describing the propagation of positive injury signals from the lesion site in an axon towards the neuron soma is described. It is assumed that these signals are driven by dynein molecular motors. An analytical solution that accounts for the probability density function (pdf) of a dynein velocity distribution is obtained. Two examples of pdf of dynein velocity distributions that follow from the results published in Ross et al. (2006, Processive bidirectional motion of dynein-dynactin complexes in vitro. Nat Cell Biol. 8:562-570) and Deinhardt et al. (2006, Rab5 and Rab7 control endocytic sorting along the axonal retrograde transport pathway. Neuron 52:293-305) are considered. The effect of dynein velocity distribution on the rate of spreading of the signal wave is discussed. It is demonstrated that the obtained solution can be applied to the problem of how neurons measure the distance between the lesion site and the neuron soma.

  19. Growing axons analysis by using Granulometric Size Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez, Mariela A.; Ballarin, Virginia L.; Rapacioli, Melina; Celín, A. R.; Sánchez, V.; Flores, V.

    2011-09-01

    Neurite growth (neuritogenesis) in vitro is a common methodology in the field of developmental neurobiology. Morphological analyses of growing neurites are usually difficult because their thinness and low contrast usually prevent to observe clearly their shape, number, length and spatial orientation. This paper presents the use of the granulometric size distribution in order to automatically obtain information about the shape, size and spatial orientation of growing axons in tissue cultures. The results here presented show that the granulometric size distribution results in a very useful morphological tool since it allows the automatic detection of growing axons and the precise characterization of a relevant parameter indicative of the axonal growth spatial orientation such as the quantification of the angle of deviation of the growing direction. The developed algorithms automatically quantify this orientation by facilitating the analysis of these images, which is important given the large number of images that need to be processed for this type of study.

  20. Axon selection: From a polarized cytoplasm to a migrating neuron.

    PubMed

    de Anda, Froylan Calderon; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2011-05-01

    The shape of a neuron supplies valuable clues as to its function. Neurons typically extend a single long, thin axon, which will transmit signals and several shorter and thicker dendrites, which will receive signals. The understanding of the means by which neurons acquire a polarized morphology is a fundamental issue in developmental neurobiology. The current view suggests that axon selection involves a stochastic mechanism. However, new data suggest that a polarized cytoplasm not only determines the position of neurite emergence, but also sets the conditions for morphological polarization. In vertebrates, neurons migrate before establishing their final morphology. Recent work shows that the polarized cytoplasm also determines how neurons migrate. Thus, neuronal migration might influence the processes by which neurons form an axon.

  1. Evidence of widespread axonal pathology in Wolfram syndrome.

    PubMed

    Shannon, P; Becker, L; Deck, J

    1999-09-01

    Wolfram syndrome, characterised by diabetes insipidus, diabetes mellitus, optic atrophy sensorineural deafness and acquired urinary tract abnormalities, is an hereditary neurodegenerative syndrome, the pathogenesis of which is unknown. We report the post-mortem findings on a patient with well-documented Wolfram syndrome. The brain showed severe degeneration of the optic nerves, chiasm and tracts as well as severe loss of neurons from the lateral geniculate nuclei, basis pontis, and the hypothalamic paraventricular and supraoptic nuclei. In addition, there was a widespread axonal dystrophy with axonal swellings in the pontocerebellar tracts, the optic radiations, the hippocampal fornices and the deep cerebral white matter. This widespread axonal pathology parallels the pattern of neurodegeneration and in many areas is more striking than neuronal loss.

  2. Semaphorin 7A promotes axon outgrowth through integrins and MAPKs.

    PubMed

    Pasterkamp, R Jeroen; Peschon, Jacques J; Spriggs, Melanie K; Kolodkin, Alex L

    2003-07-24

    Striking parallels exist between immune and nervous system cellular signalling mechanisms. Molecules originally shown to be critical for immune responses also serve neuronal functions, and similarly neural guidance cues can modulate immune function. We show here that semaphorin 7A (Sema7A), a membrane-anchored member of the semaphorin family of guidance proteins previously known for its immunomodulatory effects, can also mediate neuronal functions. Unlike many other semaphorins, which act as repulsive guidance cues, Sema7A enhances central and peripheral axon growth and is required for proper axon tract formation during embryonic development. Unexpectedly, Sema7A enhancement of axon outgrowth requires integrin receptors and activation of MAPK signalling pathways. These findings define a previously unknown biological function for semaphorins, identify an unexpected role for integrins and integrin-dependent intracellular signalling in mediating semaphorin responses, and provide a framework for understanding and interfering with Sema7A function in both immune and nervous systems.

  3. Involvement of SARA in Axon and Dendrite Growth.

    PubMed

    Arias, Cristina Isabel; Siri, Sebastián Omar; Conde, Cecilia

    2015-01-01

    SARA (Smad Anchor for Receptor Activation) plays a crucial role in Rab5-mediated endocytosis in cell lines localizing to early endosomes where it regulates morphology and function. Here, we analyzed the role of SARA during neuronal development and tested whether it functions as a regulator of endocytic trafficking of selected axonal and membrane proteins. Suppression of SARA perturbs the appearance of juxtanuclear endocytic recycling compartments and the neurons show long axons with large growth cones. Furthermore, surface distribution of the cell adhesion molecule L1 in axons and the fusion of vesicles containing transferring receptor (TfR) in dendrites were increased in neurons where SARA was silenced. Conversely, SARA overexpression generated large early endosomes and reduced neurite outgrowth. Taken together, our findings suggest a significant contribution of SARA to key aspects of neuronal development, including neurite formation.

  4. Secretion-related uptake of horseradish peroxidase in neurohypophysial axons

    PubMed Central

    1976-01-01

    During secretion of the neurohypophysial hormones, oxytocin and vasopressin, secretory granule membrane is added to the plasma membrane of the axon terminals. It is generally assumed that subsequent internalization of this additional membrane occurs by endocytosis. In order to study this process, we have traced the uptake of intravenously injected horseradish peroxidase by neurohypophysial axons in rats and golden hamsters. Peroxidase reaction product within the secretory axons was found mainly in vacuolar and C-shaped structures of a size comparable with or larger than the neurosecretory granules. Our observations suggest that these large horseradish peroxidase (HRP)- impregnated vacuoles arise directly by a form of macropinocytosis. Morphometric analysis indicated that this form of membrane retrieval increased significantly after the two types of stimuli used, reversible hemorrhage and electrical stimulation of the pituitary stalk. Microvesicular uptake of HRP was found to be comparatively less. PMID:181385

  5. Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors Preserve Function in Aging Axons

    PubMed Central

    Baltan, Selva

    2012-01-01

    Aging increases the vulnerability of aging white matter to ischemic injury. Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors preserve young adult white matter structure and function during ischemia by conserving ATP and reducing excitotoxicity. In isolated optic nerve from 12 month old mice, deprived of oxygen and glucose, we show that pan- and Class I specific HDAC inhibitors promote functional recovery of axons. This protection correlates with preservation of axonal mitochondria. The cellular expression of HDAC 3, in the central nervous system (CNS) and HDAC 2 in optic nerve considerably changed with age expanding to more cytoplasmic domains from nuclear compartments suggesting that changes in glial cell protein acetylation may confer protection to aging axons. Our results indicate manipulation of HDAC activities in glial cells may have a universal potential for stroke therapy across age groups. PMID:23050648

  6. Using quantum filters to process images of diffuse axonal injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pineda Osorio, Mateo

    2014-06-01

    Some images corresponding to a diffuse axonal injury (DAI) are processed using several quantum filters such as Hermite Weibull and Morse. Diffuse axonal injury is a particular, common and severe case of traumatic brain injury (TBI). DAI involves global damage on microscopic scale of brain tissue and causes serious neurologic abnormalities. New imaging techniques provide excellent images showing cellular damages related to DAI. Said images can be processed with quantum filters, which accomplish high resolutions of dendritic and axonal structures both in normal and pathological state. Using the Laplacian operators from the new quantum filters, excellent edge detectors for neurofiber resolution are obtained. Image quantum processing of DAI images is made using computer algebra, specifically Maple. Quantum filter plugins construction is proposed as a future research line, which can incorporated to the ImageJ software package, making its use simpler for medical personnel.

  7. TNFα reverse signaling promotes sympathetic axon growth and target innervation

    PubMed Central

    Kisiswa, Lilian; Osório, Catarina; Erice, Clara; Vizard, Thomas; Wyatt, Sean; Davies, Alun M

    2013-01-01

    Reverse signaling via members of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) superfamily is increasingly recognized among cells of the immune system where it controls multiple aspects of immune function. Here we document TNFα reverse signaling in the nervous system for the first time and show that it plays a crucial role in establishing sympathetic innervation. During postnatal development, sympathetic axons express TNFα as they grow and branch in their target tissues which in turn express TNFR1. In culture, soluble forms of TNFR1 act directly on postnatal sympathetic axons to promote growth and branching by a mechanism that depends on membrane integrated TNFα and downstream MEK/ERK activation. Sympathetic innervation density is significantly reduced in several tissues in postnatal and adult mice lacking either TNFα or TNFR1. These findings reveal that target-derived TNFR1 acts as a reverse signaling ligand for membrane-integrated TNFα to promote sympathetic axon growth and branching. PMID:23749144

  8. Pili canaliculi as manifestation of giant axonal neuropathy*

    PubMed Central

    de Almeida Jr., Hiram Larangeira; Garcias, Gilberto; Silva, Ricardo Marques e; Batista, Stela Laner; Pasetto, Fernanda

    2016-01-01

    Giant axonal neuropathy is a rare autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disease. The condition is characterized by neurons with abnormally large axons due to intracellular filament accumulation. The swollen axons affect both the peripheral and central nervous system. A 6-year old female patient had been referred to a geneticist reporting problems with walking and hypotonia. At the age of 10, she became wheelchair dependent. Scanning electron microscopy of a curly hair classified it as pili canaliculi. GAN gene sequencing demonstrated mutation c.1456G>A (p.GLU486LYS). At the age of 12, the patient died due to respiratory complications. Dermatologists should be aware of this entity since hair changes are considered suggestive of GAN. PMID:28300918

  9. The axon-protective WLD(S) protein partially rescues mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis after axonal injury.

    PubMed

    Godzik, Katharina; Coleman, Michael P

    2015-04-01

    The axon-protective Wallerian degeneration slow (WLD(S)) protein can ameliorate the decline in axonal ATP levels after neurite transection. Here, we tested the hypothesis that this effect is associated with maintenance of mitochondrial respiration and/or glycolysis. We used isolated neurites of superior cervical ganglion (SCG) cultures in the Seahorse XF-24 Metabolic Flux Analyser to determine mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis under different conditions. We observed that both mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis declined significantly during the latent phase of Wallerian degeneration. WLD(S) partially reduced the decline both in glycolysis and in mitochondrial respiration. In addition, we found that depleting NAD levels in uncut cultures led to changes in mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis similar to those rescued by WLD(S) after cut, suggesting that the maintenance of NAD levels in Wld(S) neurites after axonal injury at least partially underlies the maintenance of ATP levels. However, by using another axon-protective mutation (Sarm1(-/-)), we could demonstrate that rescue of basal ECAR (and hence probably glycolysis) rather than basal OCR (mitochondrial respiration) may be part of the protective phenotype to delay Wallerian degeneration. These findings open new routes to study glycolysis and the connection between NAD and ATP levels in axon degeneration, which may help to eventually develop therapeutic strategies to treat neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. Mild Traumatic Brain Injury and Diffuse Axonal Injury in Swine

    PubMed Central

    Browne, Kevin D.; Chen, Xiao-Han; Meaney, David F.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Until recently, mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) or “concussion” was generally ignored as a major health issue. However, emerging evidence suggests that this injury is by no means mild, considering it induces persisting neurocognitive dysfunction in many individuals. Although little is known about the pathophysiological aspects of mTBI, there is growing opinion that diffuse axonal injury (DAI) may play a key role. To explore this possibility, we adapted a model of head rotational acceleration in swine to produce mTBI by scaling the mechanical loading conditions based on available biomechanical data on concussion thresholds in humans. Using these input parameters, head rotational acceleration was induced in either the axial plane (transverse to the brainstem; n=3), causing a 10- to 35-min loss of consciousness, or coronal plane (circumferential to the brainstem; n=2), which did not produce a sustained loss of consciousness. Seven days following injury, immunohistochemical analyses of the brains revealed that both planes of head rotation induced extensive axonal pathology throughout the white matter, characterized as swollen axonal bulbs or varicosities that were immunoreactive for accumulating neurofilament protein. However, the distribution of the axonal pathology was different between planes of head rotation. In particular, more swollen axonal profiles were observed in the brainstems of animals injured in the axial plane, suggesting an anatomic substrate for prolonged loss of consciousness in mTBI. Overall, these data support DAI as an important pathological feature of mTBI, and demonstrate that surprisingly overt axonal pathology may be present, even in cases without a sustained loss of consciousness. PMID:21740133

  11. Hypergravity hinders axonal development of motor neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Kalichamy, Saraswathi Subbammal; Yoon, Kyoung-hye

    2016-01-01

    As space flight becomes more accessible in the future, humans will be exposed to gravity conditions other than our 1G environment on Earth. Our bodies and physiology, however, are adapted for life at 1G gravity. Altering gravity can have profound effects on the body, particularly the development of muscles, but the reasons and biology behind gravity’s effect are not fully known. We asked whether increasing gravity had effects on the development of motor neurons that innervate and control muscle, a relatively unexplored area of gravity biology. Using the nematode model organism Caenorhabditis elegans, we examined changes in response to hypergravity in the development of the 19 GABAergic DD/VD motor neurons that innervate body muscle. We found that a high gravity force above 10G significantly increases the number of animals with defects in the development of axonal projections from the DD/VD neurons. We showed that a critical period of hypergravity exposure during the embryonic/early larval stage was sufficient to induce defects. While characterizing the nature of the axonal defects, we found that in normal 1G gravity conditions, DD/VD axonal defects occasionally occurred, with the majority of defects occurring on the dorsal side of the animal and in the mid-body region, and a significantly higher rate of error in the 13 VD axons than the 6 DD axons. Hypergravity exposure increased the rate of DD/VD axonal defects, but did not change the distribution or the characteristics of the defects. Our study demonstrates that altering gravity can impact motor neuron development. PMID:27833821

  12. Uncovering sensory axonal dysfunction in asymptomatic type 2 diabetic neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Sung, Jia-Ying; Tani, Jowy; Chang, Tsui-San; Lin, Cindy Shin-Yi

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated sensory and motor nerve excitability properties to elucidate the development of diabetic neuropathy. A total of 109 type 2 diabetes patients were recruited, and 106 were analyzed. According to neuropathy severity, patients were categorized into G0, G1, and G2+3 groups using the total neuropathy score-reduced (TNSr). Patients in the G0 group were asymptomatic and had a TNSr score of 0. Sensory and motor nerve excitability data from diabetic patients were compared with data from 33 healthy controls. Clinical assessment, nerve conduction studies, and sensory and motor nerve excitability testing data were analyzed to determine axonal dysfunction in diabetic neuropathy. In the G0 group, sensory excitability testing revealed increased stimulus for the 50% sensory nerve action potential (P<0.05), shortened strength-duration time constant (P<0.01), increased superexcitability (P<0.01), decreased subexcitability (P<0.05), decreased accommodation to depolarizing current (P<0.01), and a trend of decreased accommodation to hyperpolarizing current in threshold electrotonus. All the changes progressed into G1 (TNSr 1–8) and G2+3 (TNSr 9–24) groups. In contrast, motor excitability only had significantly increased stimulus for the 50% compound motor nerve action potential (P<0.01) in the G0 group. This study revealed that the development of axonal dysfunction in sensory axons occurred prior to and in a different fashion from motor axons. Additionally, sensory nerve excitability tests can detect axonal dysfunction even in asymptomatic patients. These insights further our understanding of diabetic neuropathy and enable the early detection of sensory axonal abnormalities, which may provide a basis for neuroprotective therapeutic approaches. PMID:28182728

  13. Uncovering sensory axonal dysfunction in asymptomatic type 2 diabetic neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Sung, Jia-Ying; Tani, Jowy; Chang, Tsui-San; Lin, Cindy Shin-Yi

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated sensory and motor nerve excitability properties to elucidate the development of diabetic neuropathy. A total of 109 type 2 diabetes patients were recruited, and 106 were analyzed. According to neuropathy severity, patients were categorized into G0, G1, and G2+3 groups using the total neuropathy score-reduced (TNSr). Patients in the G0 group were asymptomatic and had a TNSr score of 0. Sensory and motor nerve excitability data from diabetic patients were compared with data from 33 healthy controls. Clinical assessment, nerve conduction studies, and sensory and motor nerve excitability testing data were analyzed to determine axonal dysfunction in diabetic neuropathy. In the G0 group, sensory excitability testing revealed increased stimulus for the 50% sensory nerve action potential (P<0.05), shortened strength-duration time constant (P<0.01), increased superexcitability (P<0.01), decreased subexcitability (P<0.05), decreased accommodation to depolarizing current (P<0.01), and a trend of decreased accommodation to hyperpolarizing current in threshold electrotonus. All the changes progressed into G1 (TNSr 1-8) and G2+3 (TNSr 9-24) groups. In contrast, motor excitability only had significantly increased stimulus for the 50% compound motor nerve action potential (P<0.01) in the G0 group. This study revealed that the development of axonal dysfunction in sensory axons occurred prior to and in a different fashion from motor axons. Additionally, sensory nerve excitability tests can detect axonal dysfunction even in asymptomatic patients. These insights further our understanding of diabetic neuropathy and enable the early detection of sensory axonal abnormalities, which may provide a basis for neuroprotective therapeutic approaches.

  14. Motoneuron axon pathfinding errors in zebrafish: Differential effects related to concentration and timing of nicotine exposure

    SciTech Connect

    Menelaou, Evdokia; Paul, Latoya T.; Perera, Surangi N.; Svoboda, Kurt R.

    2015-04-01

    Nicotine exposure during embryonic stages of development can affect many neurodevelopmental processes. In the developing zebrafish, exposure to nicotine was reported to cause axonal pathfinding errors in the later born secondary motoneurons (SMNs). These alterations in SMN axon morphology coincided with muscle degeneration at high nicotine concentrations (15–30 μM). Previous work showed that the paralytic mutant zebrafish known as sofa potato exhibited nicotine-induced effects onto SMN axons at these high concentrations but in the absence of any muscle deficits, indicating that pathfinding errors could occur independent of muscle effects. In this study, we used varying concentrations of nicotine at different developmental windows of exposure to specifically isolate its effects onto subpopulations of motoneuron axons. We found that nicotine exposure can affect SMN axon morphology in a dose-dependent manner. At low concentrations of nicotine, SMN axons exhibited pathfinding errors, in the absence of any nicotine-induced muscle abnormalities. Moreover, the nicotine exposure paradigms used affected the 3 subpopulations of SMN axons differently, but the dorsal projecting SMN axons were primarily affected. We then identified morphologically distinct pathfinding errors that best described the nicotine-induced effects on dorsal projecting SMN axons. To test whether SMN pathfinding was potentially influenced by alterations in the early born primary motoneuron (PMN), we performed dual labeling studies, where both PMN and SMN axons were simultaneously labeled with antibodies. We show that only a subset of the SMN axon pathfinding errors coincided with abnormal PMN axonal targeting in nicotine-exposed zebrafish. We conclude that nicotine exposure can exert differential effects depending on the levels of nicotine and developmental exposure window. - Highlights: • Embryonic nicotine exposure can specifically affect secondary motoneuron axons in a dose-dependent manner.

  15. The Flamingo ortholog FMI-1 controls pioneer-dependent navigation of follower axons in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Steimel, Andreas; Wong, Lianna; Najarro, Elvis Huarcaya; Ackley, Brian D; Garriga, Gian; Hutter, Harald

    2010-11-01

    Development of a functional neuronal network during embryogenesis begins with pioneer axons creating a scaffold along which later-outgrowing axons extend. The molecular mechanism used by these follower axons to navigate along pre-existing axons remains poorly understood. We isolated loss-of-function alleles of fmi-1, which caused strong axon navigation defects of pioneer and follower axons in the ventral nerve cord (VNC) of C. elegans. Notably follower axons, which exclusively depend on pioneer axons for correct navigation, frequently separated from the pioneer. fmi-1 is the sole C. elegans ortholog of Drosophila flamingo and vertebrate Celsr genes, and this phenotype defines a new role for this important molecule in follower axon navigation. FMI-1 has a unique and strikingly conserved structure with cadherin and C-terminal G-protein coupled receptor domains and could mediate cell-cell adhesion and signaling functions. We found that follower axon navigation depended on the extracellular but not on the intracellular domain, suggesting that FMI-1 mediates primarily adhesion between pioneer and follower axons. By contrast, pioneer axon navigation required the intracellular domain, suggesting that FMI-1 acts as receptor transducing a signal in this case. Our findings indicate that FMI-1 is a cell-type dependent axon guidance factor with different domain requirements for its different functions in pioneers and followers.

  16. Rodent spinal cord injury models for studies of axon regeneration.

    PubMed

    Steward, Oswald; Willenberg, Rafer

    2017-01-01

    For over a century, axon regeneration has been considered the Holy Grail for spinal cord injury (SCI) repair. Although there are other factors that could contribute to improving function, restoring the long motor and sensory tracts that are interrupted by SCI has the greatest potential for actually reversing paralysis, restoring the brain's control of autonomic functions mediated by sympathetic and parasympathetic circuits of the spinal cord and restoring sensation. Accordingly and in keeping with the overall theme of this special issue, this review focuses narrowly on rodent SCI models for studies of axon regeneration.

  17. Class I PI3-kinase or Akt inhibition do not impair axonal polarization, but slow down axonal elongation.

    PubMed

    Diez, Héctor; Benitez, Ma José; Fernandez, Silvia; Torres-Aleman, Ignacio; Garrido, Juan José; Wandosell, Francisco

    2016-11-01

    PI3K proteins family have multiple and essential functions in most cellular events. This family is composed of class I, class II and class III PI3Ks, which upstream and downstream elements are not completely elucidated. Previous studies using the broad PI3K inhibitor, LY294002 allowed to propose that PI3 kinase>Akt pathway is a key element in the determination of axonal polarity in hippocampal neurons. Recently, new inhibitors with a higher selectivity for class I PI3K have been characterized. In the present study we have examined this widely accepted theory using a new class I PI3K inhibitor (GDC-0941), as well as Akt inhibitors, and PTEN phosphatase constructs to reduce PIP3 levels. Our present data show that both, class I PI3K inhibitor and Akt inhibitor did not alter axon specification in hippocampal neurons, but greatly reduced axon length. However, in the same experiments LY294002 effectively impeded axonal polarization, as previously reported. Our biochemical data show that both, class I PI3K and Akt inhibitors, effectively block downstream elements from Akt to S6K1 activity. Both inhibitors are stable in culture medium along the time period analysed, maintaining the inhibition better than LY294002. Besides, we found evidence that LY294002 directly inhibits mTORC1. However, further analysis using an mTORC1 inhibitor showed no change in neuron polarity. Same result was obtained using a general class III PI3K inhibitor. Interestingly, we found that either, wild-type PTEN, or a phosphatase-dead form of PTEN, disrupted axonal polarization, strongly suggesting that the role of PTEN in axonal polarity can be independent of PIP3.

  18. Characterizing the composition of molecular motors on moving axonal cargo using "cargo mapping" analysis.

    PubMed

    Neumann, Sylvia; Campbell, George E; Szpankowski, Lukasz; Goldstein, Lawrence S B; Encalada, Sandra E

    2014-10-30

    Understanding the mechanisms by which molecular motors coordinate their activities to transport vesicular cargoes within neurons requires the quantitative analysis of motor/cargo associations at the single vesicle level. The goal of this protocol is to use quantitative fluorescence microscopy to correlate ("map") the position and directionality of movement of live cargo to the composition and relative amounts of motors associated with the same cargo. "Cargo mapping" consists of live imaging of fluorescently labeled cargoes moving in axons cultured on microfluidic devices, followed by chemical fixation during recording of live movement, and subsequent immunofluorescence (IF) staining of the exact same axonal regions with antibodies against motors. Colocalization between cargoes and their associated motors is assessed by assigning sub-pixel position coordinates to motor and cargo channels, by fitting Gaussian functions to the diffraction-limited point spread functions representing individual fluorescent point sources. Fixed cargo and motor images are subsequently superimposed to plots of cargo movement, to "map" them to their tracked trajectories. The strength of this protocol is the combination of live and IF data to record both the transport of vesicular cargoes in live cells and to determine the motors associated to these exact same vesicles. This technique overcomes previous challenges that use biochemical methods to determine the average motor composition of purified heterogeneous bulk vesicle populations, as these methods do not reveal compositions on single moving cargoes. Furthermore, this protocol can be adapted for the analysis of other transport and/or trafficking pathways in other cell types to correlate the movement of individual intracellular structures with their protein composition. Limitations of this protocol are the relatively low throughput due to low transfection efficiencies of cultured primary neurons and a limited field of view available for

  19. Oxidative Damage Compromises Energy Metabolism in the Axonal Degeneration Mouse Model of X-Adrenoleukodystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Galino, Jorge; Ruiz, Montserrat; Fourcade, Stéphane; Schlüter, Agatha; López-Erauskin, Jone; Guilera, Cristina; Jove, Mariona; Naudi, Alba; García-Arumí, Elena; Andreu, Antoni L.; Starkov, Anatoly A.; Pamplona, Reinald; Ferrer, Isidre; Portero-Otin, Manuel

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Aims Chronic metabolic impairment and oxidative stress are associated with the pathogenesis of axonal dysfunction in a growing number of neurodegenerative conditions. To investigate the intertwining of both noxious factors, we have chosen the mouse model of adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD), which exhibits axonal degeneration in spinal cords and motor disability. The disease is caused by loss of function of the ABCD1 transporter, involved in the import and degradation of very long-chain fatty acids (VLCFA) in peroxisomes. Oxidative stress due to VLCFA excess appears early in the neurodegenerative cascade. Results In this study, we demonstrate by redox proteomics that oxidative damage to proteins specifically affects five key enzymes of glycolysis and TCA (Tricarboxylic acid) cycle in spinal cords of Abcd1− mice and pyruvate kinase in human X-ALD fibroblasts. We also show that NADH and ATP levels are significantly diminished in these samples, together with decrease of pyruvate kinase activities and GSH levels, and increase of NADPH. Innovation Treating Abcd1− mice with the antioxidants N-acetylcysteine and α-lipoic acid (LA) prevents protein oxidation; preserves NADH, NADPH, ATP, and GSH levels; and normalizes pyruvate kinase activity, which implies that oxidative stress provoked by VLCFA results in bioenergetic dysfunction, at a presymptomatic stage. Conclusion Our results provide mechanistic insight into the beneficial effects of antioxidants and enhance the rationale for translation into clinical trials for X-adrenoleukodystrophy. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 15, 2095–2107. PMID:21453200

  20. Pioglitazone halts axonal degeneration in a mouse model of X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Morató, Laia; Galino, Jorge; Ruiz, Montserrat; Calingasan, Noel Ylagan; Starkov, Anatoly A.; Dumont, Magali; Naudí, Alba; Martínez, Juan José; Aubourg, Patrick; Portero-Otín, Manuel; Pamplona, Reinald; Galea, Elena; Beal, M. Flint; Ferrer, Isidre; Fourcade, Stéphane

    2013-01-01

    X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy is a neurometabolic disorder caused by inactivation of the peroxisomal ABCD1 transporter of very long-chain fatty acids. In mice, ABCD1 loss causes late onset axonal degeneration in the spinal cord in association with locomotor disability resembling the most common phenotype in patients, adrenomyeloneuropathy. Increasing evidence indicates that oxidative stress and bioenergetic failure play major roles in the pathogenesis of X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy. In this study, we aimed to evaluate whether mitochondrial biogenesis is affected in X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy. We demonstrated that Abcd1 null mice show reduced mitochondrial DNA concomitant with downregulation of mitochondrial biogenesis pathway driven by PGC-1α/PPARγ and reduced expression of mitochondrial proteins cytochrome c, NDUFB8 and VDAC. Moreover, we show that the oral administration of pioglitazone, an agonist of PPARγ, restored mitochondrial content and expression of master regulators of biogenesis, neutralized oxidative damage to proteins and DNA, and reversed bioenergetic failure in terms of ATP levels, NAD+/NADH ratios, pyruvate kinase and glutathione reductase activities. Most importantly, the treatment halted locomotor disability and axonal damage in X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy mice. These results lend support to the use of pioglitazone in clinical trials with patients with adrenomyeloneuropathy and reveal novel molecular mechanisms of action of pioglitazone in neurodegeneration. Future studies should address the effects of this anti-diabetic drug on other axonopathies in which oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction are contributing factors. PMID:23794606

  1. A templated agarose scaffold for axon guidance in the central and peripheral nervous system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gros, Thomas Richard

    This thesis examined the hypothesis that axonal guidance could be improved in the central and peripheral nervous systems using a highly linearized templated agarose scaffold. In the present study we examined whether a templated agarose scaffold improved axon retention across a large central nervous system (CNS) lesion and how cellular and axonal orientation was affected within the scaffold channels. The "physical" guidance from the scaffold was applied to an existing CNS "chemical" guidance strategy, shown to promote axons beyond the lesion site, to enhance the number of crossing axons in larger, disorganized, lesions. Specifically, there was the greatest number of long-tract sensory axons reaching the distal aspect of the lesion when the templated agarose scaffold was combined with a neurotrophic source of NT-3 beyond the lesion site and a conditioning lesion, to enhance chemical axon guidance and the intrinsic growth state of axons, respectively. When comparing the scaffold implant to a cell suspension grafts, we found a higher retention of long-tract ascending (sensory) axons and descending (motor) axons crossing large lesions (2mm). The enhanced axon retention may be attributed to the finding that cellular orientation within the scaffold channels is highly linear, thus promoting a less tortuous environment for axon orientation and bridging. Although an enhanced number of axons were able to cross the lesion, the axons did not repenetrate the host tissue due to a reactive cell layer, present only in scaffold the implant groups. Additionally, a peripheral nerve conduit, with the agarose scaffold as the core, displayed biocompatiablility and supported axon growth and vasculature beyond the clinically applicable distance of 4mm. Thus, the templated agarose scaffold enhances axon retention and guidance within CNS injury sites and has potential applications to the PNS.

  2. Identification of axon-enriched microRNAs localized to growth cones of cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Yukio; Gross, Christina; Xing, Lei; Goshima, Yoshio; Bassell, Gary J

    2014-03-01

    There is increasing evidence that localized mRNAs in axons and growth cones play an important role in axon extension and pathfinding via local translation. A few studies have revealed the presence of microRNAs (miRNAs) in axons, which may control local protein synthesis during axon development. However, so far, there has been no attempt to screen for axon-enriched miRNAs and to validate their possible localization to growth cones of developing axons from neurons of the central nervous system. In this study, the localization of miRNAs in axons and growth cones in cortical neurons was examined using a "neuron ball" culture method that is suitable to prepare axonal miRNAs with high yield and purity. Axonal miRNAs prepared from the neuron ball cultures of mouse cortical neurons were analyzed by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Among 375 miRNAs that were analyzed, 105 miRNAs were detected in axons, and six miRNAs were significantly enriched in axonal fractions when compared with cell body fractions. Fluorescence in situ hybridization revealed that two axon-enriched miRNAs, miR-181a-1* and miR-532, localized as distinct granules in distal axons and growth cones. The association of these miRNAs with the RNA-induced silencing complex further supported their function to regulate mRNA levels or translation in the brain. These results suggest a mechanism to localize specific miRNAs to distal axons and growth cones, where they could be involved in local mRNA regulation. These findings provide new insight into the presence of axonal miRNAs and motivate further analysis of their function in local protein synthesis underlying axon guidance.

  3. Axonal actin in action: Imaging actin dynamics in neurons.

    PubMed

    Ladt, Kelsey; Ganguly, Archan; Roy, Subhojit

    2016-01-01

    Actin is a highly conserved, key cytoskeletal protein involved in numerous structural and functional roles. In neurons, actin has been intensively investigated in axon terminals-growth cones-and dendritic spines, but details about actin structure and dynamics in axon shafts have remained obscure for decades. A major barrier in the field has been imaging actin. Actin exists as soluble monomers (G-actin) as well as actin filaments (F-actin), and labeling actin with conventional fluorescent probes like GFP/RFP typically leads to a diffuse haze that makes it difficult to discern kinetic behaviors. In a recent publication, we used F-actin selective probes to visualize actin dynamics in axons, resolving striking actin behaviors that have not been described before. However, using these probes to visualize actin dynamics is challenging as they can cause bundling of actin filaments; thus, experimental parameters need to be strictly optimized. Here we describe some practical methodological details related to using these probes for visualizing F-actin dynamics in axons.

  4. Extrinsic cellular and molecular mediators of peripheral axonal regeneration.

    PubMed

    Bosse, Frank

    2012-07-01

    The ability of injured peripheral nerves to regenerate and reinnervate their original targets is a characteristic feature of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). On the other hand, neurons of the central nervous system (CNS), including retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons, are incapable of spontaneous regeneration. In the adult PNS, axonal regeneration after injury depends on well-orchestrated cellular and molecular processes that comprise a highly reproducible series of degenerative reactions distal to the site of injury. During this fine-tuned process, named Wallerian degeneration, a remodeling of the distal nerve fragment prepares a permissive microenvironment that permits successful axonal regrowth originating from the proximal nerve fragment. Therefore, a multitude of adjusted intrinsic and extrinsic factors are important for surviving neurons, Schwann cells, macrophages and fibroblasts as well as endothelial cells in order to achieve successful regeneration. The aim of this review is to summarize relevant extrinsic cellular and molecular determinants of successful axonal regeneration in rodents that contribute to the regenerative microenvironment of the PNS.

  5. Coated glass and vicryl microfibers as artificial axons.

    PubMed

    Howe, Charles L

    2006-01-01

    The complex interactions that occur between oligodendrocytes and axons during the process of central nervous system myelination and remyelination remain unclear. Elucidation of the cell-biological and -biochemical mechanisms supporting myelin production and elaboration requires a robust in vitro system that recapitulates the relationship between axons and oligodendrocytes in a manner that is open to molecular dissection. We provide evidence for an artificial axon culture system in which we observed oligodendrocytes extending large plasma membrane projections that frequently completely ensheathed fibers coated with a variety of extracellular matrix molecules. These membrane projections varied in extent and thickness depending upon the substrate and upon the diameter of the coated fiber. Matrigel-coated glass microfibers were found to support the development of thick membrane sheaths that extended for hundreds of microns and exhibited many features suggestive of the potential for true myelin deposition. Likewise, Matrigel-coated Vicryl fibers supported plasma membrane extensions that covered extremely large surface areas and occasionally wrapped the coated Vicryl fibers in more than one membrane layer. Our findings suggest that the deposition of molecular cues onto glass or polymer fibers either via adsorption or chemical modification may be a useful tool for the discovery or validation of axonal factors critical for myelination and remyelination. Herein, we provide evidence that polyglactin 910 and glass microfibers coated with adhesion factors may provide a reasonable system for the in vitro analysis of myelination, and may eventually serve a role in engineering artificial systems for neural repair.

  6. ETHANOL ALTERS CALCIUM SIGNALING IN AXONAL GROWTH CONES

    PubMed Central

    Mah, Stephanie J.; Fleck, Mark W.

    2011-01-01

    Calcium (Ca2+) channels are sensitive to ethanol and Ca2+ signaling is a critical regulator of axonal growth and guidance. Effects of acute and chronic exposure to ethanol (22, 43, or 87 mM) on voltage-gated Ca2+ channels (VGCCs) in whole cells, and KCl-induced Ca2+ transients in axonal growth cones, were examined using dissociated hippocampal cultures. Whole-cell patch-clamp analysis in neurons with newly-formed axons (Stage 3) revealed that rapidly inactivating, low-voltage activated (LVA) and non-inactivating, high-voltage activated (HVA) currents were both inhibited in a dose-dependent manner by acute ethanol, with relatively greater inhibition of HVA currents. When assessed by Fluo-4-AM imaging, baseline fluorescence and Ca2+ response to ethanol in Stage 3 neurons was similar compared to neurons without axons, but peak Ca2+ transient amplitudes in response to bath-applied KCl were greater in Stage 3 neurons and were decreased by acute ethanol. The amplitude of Ca2+ transients elicited specifically in axonal growth cones by focal application of KCl was also inhibited by acute exposure to moderate-to-high concentrations of ethanol (43 or 87 mM), whereas a lower concentration (22 mM) had no effect. When 43 or 87 mM ethanol was present continuously in the medium, KCl-evoked Ca2+ transient amplitudes were also reduced in growth cones. In contrast, Ca2+ transients were increased by continuous exposure to 22 mM ethanol. Visualization using a fluorescent dihydropyridine analog revealed that neurons continuously exposed to ethanol expressed increased amounts of L-type Ca2+ channels, with greater increases in axonal growth cones than cell bodies. Thus, acute ethanol reduces Ca2+ current and KCl-induced Ca2+ responses in whole cells and axonal growth cones, respectively, and chronic exposure is also generally inhibitory despite apparent up-regulation of L-type channel expression. These results are consistent with a role for altered growth cone Ca2+ signaling in abnormal

  7. Wallerian degeneration of zebrafish trigeminal axons in the skin is required for regeneration and developmental pruning.

    PubMed

    Martin, Seanna M; O'Brien, Georgeann S; Portera-Cailliau, Carlos; Sagasti, Alvaro

    2010-12-01

    Fragments of injured axons that detach from their cell body break down by the molecularly regulated process of Wallerian degeneration (WD). Although WD resembles local axon degeneration, a common mechanism for refining neuronal structure, several previously examined instances of developmental pruning were unaffected by WD pathways. We used laser axotomy and time-lapse confocal imaging to characterize and compare peripheral sensory axon WD and developmental pruning in live zebrafish larvae. Detached fragments of single injured axon arbors underwent three stereotyped phases of WD: a lag phase, a fragmentation phase and clearance. The lag phase was developmentally regulated, becoming shorter as embryos aged, while the length of the clearance phase increased with the amount of axon debris. Both cell-specific inhibition of ubiquitylation and overexpression of the Wallerian degeneration slow protein (Wld(S)) lengthened the lag phase dramatically, but neither affected fragmentation. Persistent Wld(S)-expressing axon fragments directly repelled regenerating axon branches of their parent arbor, similar to self-repulsion among sister branches of intact arbors. Expression of Wld(S) also disrupted naturally occurring local axon pruning and axon degeneration in spontaneously dying trigeminal neurons: although pieces of Wld(S)-expressing axons were pruned, and some Wld(S)-expressing cells still died during development, in both cases detached axon fragments failed to degenerate. We propose that spontaneously pruned fragments of peripheral sensory axons must be removed by a WD-like mechanism to permit efficient innervation of the epidermis.

  8. Wallerian degeneration of zebrafish trigeminal axons in the skin is required for regeneration and developmental pruning

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Seanna M.; O'Brien, Georgeann S.; Portera-Cailliau, Carlos; Sagasti, Alvaro

    2010-01-01

    Fragments of injured axons that detach from their cell body break down by the molecularly regulated process of Wallerian degeneration (WD). Although WD resembles local axon degeneration, a common mechanism for refining neuronal structure, several previously examined instances of developmental pruning were unaffected by WD pathways. We used laser axotomy and time-lapse confocal imaging to characterize and compare peripheral sensory axon WD and developmental pruning in live zebrafish larvae. Detached fragments of single injured axon arbors underwent three stereotyped phases of WD: a lag phase, a fragmentation phase and clearance. The lag phase was developmentally regulated, becoming shorter as embryos aged, while the length of the clearance phase increased with the amount of axon debris. Both cell-specific inhibition of ubiquitylation and overexpression of the Wallerian degeneration slow protein (WldS) lengthened the lag phase dramatically, but neither affected fragmentation. Persistent WldS-expressing axon fragments directly repelled regenerating axon branches of their parent arbor, similar to self-repulsion among sister branches of intact arbors. Expression of WldS also disrupted naturally occurring local axon pruning and axon degeneration in spontaneously dying trigeminal neurons: although pieces of WldS-expressing axons were pruned, and some WldS-expressing cells still died during development, in both cases detached axon fragments failed to degenerate. We propose that spontaneously pruned fragments of peripheral sensory axons must be removed by a WD-like mechanism to permit efficient innervation of the epidermis. PMID:21041367

  9. THEORETICAL PRINCIPLES UNDERLYING OPTICAL STIMULATION OF MYELINATED AXONS EXPRESSING CHANNELRHODOPSIN-2

    PubMed Central

    ARLOW, R. L.; FOUTZ, T. J.; MCINTYRE, C. C.

    2013-01-01

    Numerous clinical conditions can be treated by neuromodulation of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Typical electrical PNS therapies activate large diameter axons at lower electrical stimulus thresholds than small diameter axons. However, recent animal experiments with peripheral optogenetic neural stimulation (PONS) of myelinated axons expressing channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) have shown that this technique activates small diameter axons at lower irradiances than large diameter axons. We hypothesized that the small-to-large diameter recruitment order primarily arises from the internodal spacing relationship of myelinated axons. Small diameter axons have shorter distances between their nodes of Ranvier, which increases the number of nodes of Ranvier directly illuminated relative to larger diameter axons. We constructed “light-axon” PONS models that included multi-compartment, double cable, myelinated axon models embedded with ChR2 membrane dynamics, coupled with a model of blue light dynamics in the tissue medium from a range of different light sources. The light-axon models enabled direct calculation of threshold irradiance for different diameter axons. Our simulations demonstrate that illumination of multiple nodal sections reduces the threshold irradiance and enhances the small-to-large diameter recruitment order. In addition to addressing biophysical questions, our light-axon model system could also be useful in guiding the engineering design of optical stimulation technology that could maximize the efficiency and selectivity of PONS. PMID:23811392

  10. Nicotine elicits prolonged calcium signaling along ventral hippocampal axons.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Chongbo; Talmage, David A; Role, Lorna W

    2013-01-01

    Presynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) have long been implicated in the modulation of CNS circuits. We previously reported that brief exposure to low concentrations of nicotine induced sustained potentiation of glutamatergic transmission at ventral hippocampal (vHipp)-striatal synapses. Here, we exploited nAChR subtype-selective antagonists and agonists and α7*nAChR knockout mutant mice (α7-/-) to elucidate the signaling mechanisms underlying nAChR-mediated modulation of synaptic transmission. Using a combination of micro-slices culture from WT and α7-/-mice, calcium imaging, and immuno-histochemical techniques, we found that nicotine elicits localized and oscillatory increases in intracellular Ca(2+) along vHipp axons that persists for up to 30 minutes. The sustained phase of the nicotine-induced Ca(2+) response was blocked by α-BgTx but not by DHβE and was mimicked by α7*nAChR agonists but not by non-α7*nAChR agonists. In vHipp slices from α7-/- mice, nicotine elicited only transient increases of axonal Ca(2+) signals and did not activate CaMKII. The sustained phase of the nicotine-induced Ca(2+) response required localized activation of CaMKII, phospholipase C, and IP3 receptor mediated Ca(2+)-induced Ca(2+) release (CICR). In conclusion, activation of presynaptic nAChRs by nicotine elicits Ca(2+) influx into the presynaptic axons, the sustained phase of the nicotine-induced Ca(2+) response requires that axonal α7*nAChR activate a downstream signaling network in the vHipp axons.

  11. Dystrophic Serotonin Axons in Postmortem Brains from Young Autism Patients

    PubMed Central

    Azmitia, Efrain C.; Singh, Jorawer S.; Hou, Xiao P.; Wiegel, Jerzy

    2014-01-01

    Autism causes neuropathological changes in varied anatomical loci. A coherent neural mechanism to explain the spectrum of autistic symptomatology has not been proposed because most anatomical researchers focus on point-to-point functional neural systems (e.g. auditory, social networks) rather than considering global chemical neural systems. Serotonergic neurons have a global innervation pattern. Their cell bodies are found in the midbrain but they project their axons throughout the neural axis beginning in the fetal brain. This global system is implicated in autism by animal models and by biochemical, imaging, pharmacological, and genetics studies. However, no anatomical studies of the 5-HT innervation of autistic donors have been reported. Our review presents immunocytochemical evidence of an increase in 5-HT axons in post-mortem brain tissue from autism donors aged 2.8 to 29 years relative to controls. This increase is observed in the principle ascending fiber bundles of the medial and lateral forebrain bundles, and in the innervation density of the amygdala and the piriform, superior temporal, and parahippocampal cortices. In autistic donors eight years of age and up, several types of dystrophic 5-HT axons were seen in the termination fields. One class of these dystrophic axons, the thick heavily stained axons, was not seen in the brains of patients with neurodegenerative diseases. These findings provide morphological evidence for the involvement of serotonin neurons in the early etiology of autism, and suggest a diet therapy may be effective to blunt serotonin’s trophic actions during early brain development in children. PMID:21901837

  12. Tyrosine-mutated AAV2-mediated shRNA silencing of PTEN promotes axon regeneration of adult optic nerve

    PubMed Central

    Huang, ZhengRu; Hu, ZiZhong; Xie, Ping; Liu, QingHuai

    2017-01-01

    Activating PI3K/AKT/mTOR signaling pathway via deleting phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) has been confirmed to enhance intrinsic growth capacity of neurons to facilitate the axons regeneration of central nervous system after injury. Considering conditional gene deletion is currently not available in clinical practice, we exploited capsid residue tyrosine 444 to phenylalanine mutated single-stranded adeno-associated virus serotype 2 (AAV2) as a vector delivering short hairpin RNA to silence PTEN to promote retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) survival and axons regeneration in adult rat optic nerve axotomy paradigm. We found that mutant AAV2 displayed higher infection efficiency to RGCs and Müller cells by intravitreal injection, mediated PTEN suppression, resulted in much more RGCs survival and more robust axons regeneration compared with wild type AAV2, due to the different extent of the mTOR complex-1 activation and glutamate aspartate transporter (GLAST) regulation. These results suggest that high efficiency AAV2-mediated PTEN knockdown represents a practicable therapeutic strategy for optic neuropathy. PMID:28323869

  13. Orexin A and orexin receptor 1 axonal traffic in dorsal roots at the CNS/PNS interface.

    PubMed

    Colas, Damien; Manca, Annalisa; Delcroix, Jean-Dominique; Mourrain, Philippe

    2014-01-01

    Hypothalamic orexin/hypocretin neurons send long axonal projections through the dorsal spinal cord in lamina I-II of the dorsal horn (DH) at the interface with the peripheral nervous system (PNS). We show that in the DH OXA fibers colocalize with substance P (SP) positive afferents of dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons known to mediate sensory processing. Further, OR1 is expressed in p75(NTR) and SP positive DRG neurons, suggesting a potential signaling pathway between orexin and DRG neurons. Interestingly, DRG sensory neurons have a distinctive bifurcating axon where one branch innervates the periphery and the other one the spinal cord (pseudo-unipolar neurons), allowing for potential functional coupling of distinct targets. We observe that OR1 is transported selectively from DRG toward the spinal cord, while OXA is accumulated retrogradely toward the DRG. We hence report a rare situation of asymmetrical neuropeptide receptor distribution between axons projected by a single neuron. These molecular and cellular data are consistent with the role of OXA/OR1 in sensory processing, including DRG neuronal modulation, and support the potential existence of an OX/HCRT circuit between CNS and PNS.

  14. Early Degeneration of Both Dopaminergic and Serotonergic Axons – A Common Mechanism in Parkinson’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Grosch, Janina; Winkler, Jürgen; Kohl, Zacharias

    2016-01-01

    Motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease (PD) are tightly linked to the degeneration of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons and their projections into the striatum. Moreover, a broad range of non-motor symptoms like anxiety and depression frequently occur in PD, most likely related to the loss of serotonergic neurons and their projections into corresponding target regions. Strikingly, nigral dopaminergic neurons and raphe serotonergic neurons are severely affected in PD showing characteristic hallmarks of PD neuropathology, in particular alpha-synuclein containing Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. So far, the initial events underlying neurodegenerative processes in PD are not well understood. Several observations, however, indicate that neurites and synapses of diseased neurons may be the first subcellular compartments compromised by alpha-synuclein associated pathology. In particular axonal pathology and deficits in axonal transport may be leading to the onset of synucleinopathies such as PD. This review will highlight current findings derived from imaging and neuropathological studies in PD patients, as well as cellular and animal PD models, which define the initial underlying structural and molecular events within dopaminergic and serotonergic circuits leading to the ‘dying back’ degeneration of axonal projections in PD. PMID:28066188

  15. Axonal action-potential initiation and Na+ channel densities in the soma and axon initial segment of subicular pyramidal neurons.

    PubMed

    Colbert, C M; Johnston, D

    1996-11-01

    A long-standing hypothesis is that action potentials initiate first in the axon hillock/initial segment (AH-IS) region because of a locally high density of Na+ channels. We tested this idea in subicular pyramidal neurons by using patch-clamp recordings in hippocampal slices. Simultaneous recordings from the soma and IS confirmed that orthodromic action potentials initiated in the axon and then invaded the soma. However, blocking Na+ channels in the AH-IS with locally applied tetrodotoxin (TTX) did not raise the somatic threshold membrane potential for orthodromic spikes. TTX applied to the axon beyond the AH-IS (30-60 microm from the soma) raised the apparent somatic threshold by approximately 8 mV. We estimated the Na+ current density in the AH-IS and somatic membranes by using cell-attached patch-clamp recordings and found similar magnitudes (3-4 pA/microm2). Thus, the present results suggest that orthodromic action potentials initiate in the axon beyond the AH-IS and that the minimum threshold for spike initiation of the neuron is not determined by a high density of Na+ channels in the AH-IS region.

  16. ALS Along the Axons – Expression of Coding and Noncoding RNA Differs in Axons of ALS models

    PubMed Central

    Rotem, Nimrod; Magen, Iddo; Ionescu, Ariel; Gershoni-Emek, Noga; Altman, Topaz; Costa, Christopher J.; Gradus, Tal; Pasmanik-Chor, Metsada; Willis, Dianna E.; Ben-Dov, Iddo Z.; Hornstein, Eran; Perlson, Eran

    2017-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a multifactorial lethal motor neu