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Sample records for zonisamide target astrocyte

  1. Zonisamide

    MedlinePlus

    ... difficulty thinking of words or trouble speaking difficulty thinking or concentrating lack of coordination difficulty walking severe weakness severe muscle pain extreme tiredness loss of appetite fast, shallow breathing irregular heartbeat loss of consciousness Zonisamide ...

  2. Astrocytes, therapeutic targets for neuroprotection and neurorestoration in ischemic stroke

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhongwu; Chopp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell type within the central nervous system. They play essential roles in maintaining normal brain function, as they are a critical structural and functional part of the tripartite synapses and the neurovascular unit, and communicate with neurons, oligodendrocytes and endothelial cells. After an ischemic stroke, astrocytes perform multiple functions both detrimental and beneficial, for neuronal survival during the acute phase. Aspects of the astrocytic inflammatory response to stroke may aggravate the ischemic lesion, but astrocytes also provide benefit for neuroprotection, by limiting lesion extension via anti-excitotoxicity effects and releasing neurotrophins. Similarly, during the late recovery phase after stroke, the glial scar may obstruct axonal regeneration and subsequently reduce the functional outcome; however, astrocytes also contribute to angiogenesis, neurogenesis, synaptogenesis, and axonal remodeling, and thereby promote neurological recovery. Thus, the pivotal involvement of astrocytes in normal brain function and responses to an ischemic lesion designates them as excellent therapeutic targets to improve functional outcome following stroke. In this review, we will focus on functions of astrocytes and astrocyte-mediated events during stroke and recovery. We will provide an overview of approaches on how to reduce the detrimental effects and amplify the beneficial effects of astrocytes on neuroprotection and on neurorestoration post stroke, which may lead to novel and clinically relevant therapies for stroke. PMID:26455456

  3. Astrocytes Pathology in ALS: A Potential Therapeutic Target?

    PubMed

    Johann, Sonja

    2017-01-01

    The mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are multifactorial and include genetic and environmental factors. Nowadays, it is well accepted that neuronal loss is driven by non-cell autonomous toxicity. Non-neuronal cells, such as astrocytes, have been described to significantly contribute to motoneuron cell death and disease progression in cell culture experiments and animal models of ALS. Astrocytes are essential for neuronal survival and function by regulating neurotransmitter and ion homeostasis, immune response, blood flow and glucose uptake, antioxidant defence and growth factor release. Based on their significant functions in "housekeeping" the central nervous system (CNS), they are no longer thought to be passive bystanders but rather contributors to ALS pathogenesis. Findings from animal models have broadened our knowledge about different pathomechanisms in ALS, but therapeutic approaches to impede disease progression failed. So far, there is no cure for ALS and effective medication to slow down disease progression is limited. Targeting only a single aspect of this multifactorial disease may exhibit therapeutic limitations. Hence, novel cellular targets must be defined and new pharmaceutical strategies, such as combinatorial drug therapies are urgently needed. The present review discusses the physiological role of astrocytes and current hypotheses of astrocyte pathology in ALS. Furthermore, recent investigation of potential drug candidates in astrocyte cell culture systems and animal models, as well as data obtained from clinical trials, will be addressed. The central role of astrocytes in ALS pathogenesis makes them a promising target for pharmaceutical interventions. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  4. Astrocytes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kimelberg, Harold K.; Norenberg, Michael D.

    1989-01-01

    Describes the astrocytes' function as equal partners with neurons in both the normal and the abnormal brain. Discusses the developmental scaffolds, inert scar tissue, Huntington's disease, psychiatric disorders, and the identification of these brain cells. (RT)

  5. Targeting of astrocytic glucose metabolism by beta-hydroxybutyrate.

    PubMed

    Valdebenito, Rocío; Ruminot, Iván; Garrido-Gerter, Pamela; Fernández-Moncada, Ignacio; Forero-Quintero, Linda; Alegría, Karin; Becker, Holger M; Deitmer, Joachim W; Barros, L Felipe

    2016-10-01

    The effectiveness of ketogenic diets and intermittent fasting against neurological disorders has brought interest to the effects of ketone bodies on brain cells. These compounds are known to modify the metabolism of neurons, but little is known about their effect on astrocytes, cells that control the supply of glucose to neurons and also modulate neuronal excitability through the glycolytic production of lactate. Here we have used genetically-encoded Förster Resonance Energy Transfer nanosensors for glucose, pyruvate and ATP to characterize astrocytic energy metabolism at cellular resolution. Our results show that the ketone body beta-hydroxybutyrate strongly inhibited astrocytic glucose consumption in mouse astrocytes in mixed cultures, in organotypic hippocampal slices and in acute hippocampal slices prepared from ketotic mice, while blunting the stimulation of glycolysis by physiological and pathophysiological stimuli. The inhibition of glycolysis was paralleled by an increased ability of astrocytic mitochondria to metabolize pyruvate. These results support the emerging notion that astrocytes contribute to the neuroprotective effect of ketone bodies. © The Author(s) 2015.

  6. New Transgenic Mouse Lines for Selectively Targeting Astrocytes and Studying Calcium Signals in Astrocyte Processes In Situ and In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Rahul; Lu, Tsai-Yi; Chai, Hua; Xu, Ji; Huang, Ben S; Golshani, Peyman; Coppola, Giovanni; Khakh, Baljit S

    2016-12-21

    Astrocytes exist throughout the nervous system and are proposed to affect neural circuits and behavior. However, studying astrocytes has proven difficult because of the lack of tools permitting astrocyte-selective genetic manipulations. Here, we report the generation of Aldh1l1-Cre/ERT2 transgenic mice to selectively target astrocytes in vivo. We characterized Aldh1l1-Cre/ERT2 mice using imaging, immunohistochemistry, AAV-FLEX-GFP microinjections, and crosses to RiboTag, Ai95, and new Cre-dependent membrane-tethered Lck-GCaMP6f knockin mice that we also generated. Two to three weeks after tamoxifen induction, Aldh1l1-Cre/ERT2 selectively targeted essentially all adult (P80) brain astrocytes with no detectable neuronal contamination, resulting in expression of cytosolic and Lck-GCaMP6f, and permitting subcellular astrocyte calcium imaging during startle responses in vivo. Crosses with RiboTag mice allowed sequencing of actively translated mRNAs and determination of the adult cortical astrocyte transcriptome. Thus, we provide well-characterized, easy-to-use resources with which to selectively study astrocytes in situ and in vivo in multiple experimental scenarios. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Novel astrocyte targets: new avenues for the therapeutic treatment of epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Crunelli, Vincenzo; Carmignoto, Giorgio; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2015-02-01

    During the last 20 years, it has been well established that a finely tuned, continuous crosstalk between neurons and astrocytes not only critically modulates physiological brain functions but also underlies many neurological diseases. In particular, this novel way of interpreting brain activity is markedly influencing our current knowledge of epilepsy, prompting a re-evaluation of old findings and guiding novel experimentation. Here, we review recent studies that have unraveled novel and unique contributions of astrocytes to the generation and spread of convulsive and nonconvulsive seizures and epileptiform activity. The emerging scenario advocates an overall framework in which a dynamic and reciprocal interplay among astrocytic and neuronal ensembles is fundamental for a fuller understanding of epilepsy. In turn, this offers novel astrocytic targets for the development of those really novel chemical entities for the control of convulsive and nonconvulsive seizures that have been acknowledged as a key priority in the management of epilepsy. © The Author(s) 2014.

  8. Zonisamide serum concentrations during pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Reimers, Arne; Helde, Grethe; Becser Andersen, Noémi; Aurlien, Dag; Surlien Navjord, Elisabeth; Haggag, Kathrine; Christensen, Jakob; Lillestølen, Kari Mette; Nakken, Karl Otto; Brodtkorb, Eylert

    2018-05-04

    To investigate the change in zonisamide (ZNS) serum concentration and its consequences in pregnant women with epilepsy. Six hospitals in Norway and Denmark screened their records for women who had been using ZNS during pregnancy. Absolute serum concentrations as well as concentration/dose (CD)-ratios were compared to non-pregnant values. Descriptive data on seizure control and obstetrical data were also collected. 144 serum concentrations from 23 pregnancies in 15 individual women with epilepsy were included (six on monotherapy). The mean ZNS serum concentration fell to a minimum of 58.6 ± 15.1%, while the C/D-ratio fell to as low as 55.1 ± 15.3% of the non-pregnant-value. The lowest values were seen in gestational months six to nine, and the individual nadir varied considerably (range: 24-81% of the non-pregnant value). Four out of ten previously seizure-free patients experienced breakthrough seizures. Gestational age, weight at birth and head circumference of the newborns were within the reference ranges. ZNS serum concentrations may fall by over 40% during pregnancy, with large interindividual variability. In some patients, this may lead to worsened seizure control. These findings are in line with reports on other AEDs and suggest that regular therapeutic drug monitoring and dose adjustments may be useful. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Aquaporin 4 in Astrocytes is a Target for Therapy in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Lan, Yu-Long; Chen, Jian-Jiao; Hu, Gang; Xu, Jun; Xiao, Ming; Li, Shao

    2017-01-01

    Current experimental evidence points to the conclusion that aquaporin 4 (AQP4), which is an important water-channel membrane protein found in the brain, could play major roles in various brain conditions pathologically including pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this paper, we review how AQP4 and altered astrocyte functions interact in AD, and provide experimental evidence highlighting the importance of this topic for the future investigations. The interactions of AQP4 are as follows: (i) AQP4 could influence astrocytic calcium signaling and potassium homeostasis. (ii) AQP4 is linked with the removal of interstitial β-amyloid and glutamate transmission. (iii) Furthermore, AQP4 modulates the reactive astrogliosis and neuroinflammation mechanisms. (iv) To add to this, AQP4 could participate in the AD pathogenesis through affecting neurotrophic factor production. It is therefore possible to identify certain functional molecules that regulate astrocyte make-up and functions. However, making crucial efforts to develop specific agents or drugs that target AQP4 function and test their therapeutic efficiency will be a breakthrough for addressing AD in that AQP4 controls the various physiological as well as pathophysiological features of astrocytes. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  10. Idiopathic hemifacial spasm responsive to zonisamide: a case report.

    PubMed

    Siniscalchi, Antonio; Gallelli, Luca; Palleria, Caterina; De Sarro, Giovambattista

    2009-01-01

    We describe a patient with idiopathic hemifacial spasm (HFS) that was responsive to zonisamide treatment. A 65-year-old woman presented with a 4-year history of left-sided HFS developing gradually, starting from the upper facial muscles. After several analyses, the diagnosis of idiopathic HFS was made, and the clonazepam treatment (0.5 mg every 8 hours) was started, without a complete remission of symptoms. Therefore, zonisamide (150 mg twice a day for a 6-week period) was added, with a complete resolution. The rechallenge with zonisamide after its dechallenge confirmed its effectiveness. During follow-up, the patient remained symptom-free, with no adverse drug reactions. We suggest that zonisamide could represent a useful therapeutic option in the treatment of idiopathic HFS.

  11. Zonisamide-induced weight loss in schizophrenia: case series.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jaewon; Lee, Moon-Soo; Joe, Sook-Haeng; Jung, In-Kwa; Kim, Seung-Hyun

    2010-01-01

    Weight gain and metabolic disturbances constitute bothersome problems in schizophrenic patients treated with atypical antipsychotics. Several medications, exercise regimens, and lifestyle changes have been used in attempts to ameliorate these problems. We describe 3 patients with schizophrenia who manifested distinct weight loss and reduction in waist circumference during medication with zonisamide. This report suggests that zonisamide might be associated with weight loss in patients with schizophrenia.

  12. Inducible targeting of CNS astrocytes in Aldh1l1-CreERT2 BAC transgenic mice

    PubMed Central

    Winchenbach, Jan; Düking, Tim; Berghoff, Stefan A.; Stumpf, Sina K.; Hülsmann, Swen; Nave, Klaus-Armin; Saher, Gesine

    2016-01-01

    Background: Studying astrocytes in higher brain functions has been hampered by the lack of genetic tools for the efficient expression of inducible Cre recombinase throughout the CNS, including the neocortex. Methods: Therefore, we generated BAC transgenic mice, in which CreERT2 is expressed under control of the Aldh1l1 regulatory region. Results: When crossbred to Cre reporter mice, adult Aldh1l1-CreERT2 mice show efficient gene targeting in astrocytes. No such Cre-mediated recombination was detectable in CNS neurons, oligodendrocytes, and microglia. As expected, Aldh1l1-CreERT2 expression was evident in several peripheral organs, including liver and kidney. Conclusions: Taken together, Aldh1l1-CreERT2 mice are a useful tool for studying astrocytes in neurovascular coupling, brain metabolism, synaptic plasticity and other aspects of neuron-glia interactions. PMID:28149504

  13. Inducible targeting of CNS astrocytes in Aldh1l1-CreERT2 BAC transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Winchenbach, Jan; Düking, Tim; Berghoff, Stefan A; Stumpf, Sina K; Hülsmann, Swen; Nave, Klaus-Armin; Saher, Gesine

    2016-01-01

    Background: Studying astrocytes in higher brain functions has been hampered by the lack of genetic tools for the efficient expression of inducible Cre recombinase throughout the CNS, including the neocortex. Methods: Therefore, we generated BAC transgenic mice, in which CreERT2 is expressed under control of the Aldh1l1 regulatory region. Results: When crossbred to Cre reporter mice, adult Aldh1l1-CreERT2 mice show efficient gene targeting in astrocytes. No such Cre-mediated recombination was detectable in CNS neurons, oligodendrocytes, and microglia. As expected, Aldh1l1-CreERT2 expression was evident in several peripheral organs, including liver and kidney. Conclusions: Taken together, Aldh1l1-CreERT2 mice are a useful tool for studying astrocytes in neurovascular coupling, brain metabolism, synaptic plasticity and other aspects of neuron-glia interactions.

  14. Astrocyte- and endothelial-targeted CCL2 conditional knockout mice: critical tools for studying the pathogenesis of neuroinflammation.

    PubMed

    Ge, Shujun; Murugesan, Nivetha; Pachter, Joel S

    2009-09-01

    While the expression of the C-C chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2) in the central nervous system (CNS) is associated with numerous neuroinflammatory conditions, the critical cellular sources of this chemokine, which is responsible for disease processes-as well as associated pathogenic mechanisms, remain unresolved. As the potential for anti-CCL2 therapeutics in treating neuroinflammatory disease is likely to be contingent upon effective drug delivery to the source(s) and/or target(s) of CCL2 action in the CNS, tools to highlight the course of CCL2 action during neuroinflammation are imperative. In response to this need, we used the Cre/loxP and FLP-FRT recombination system to develop the first two, cell-conditional CCL2 knockout mice-separately targeting CCL2 gene elimination to astrocytes and endothelial cells, both of which have been considered to play crucial though undefined roles in neuroinflammatory disease. Specifically, mice containing a floxed CCL2 allele were intercrossed with GFAP-Cre or Tie2-Cre transgenic mice to generate mice with CCL2-deficient astrocytes (astrocyte KO) or endothelial cells (endothelial KO), respectively. Polymerase chain reaction, reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction/quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay of CCL2 gene, RNA, and protein, respectively, from cultured astrocytes and brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMEC) established the efficiency and specificity of the CCL2 gene deletions and a CCL2 null phenotype in these CNS cells. Effective cell-conditional knockout of CCL2 was also confirmed in an in vivo setting, wherein astrocytes and BMEC were retrieved by immune-guided laser capture microdissection from their in situ positions in the brains of mice experiencing acute, lipopolysaccharide-mediated endotoxemia to induce CCL2 gene expression. In vivo analysis further revealed apparent cross-talk between BMEC and astrocytes regarding the regulation of astrocyte CCL

  15. Suspected zonisamide-related anticonvulsant hypersensitivity syndrome in a cat.

    PubMed

    Collinet, Audrey; Sammut, Veronique

    2017-12-15

    CASE DESCRIPTION A 2-year-old neutered male domestic shorthair cat was evaluated for sudden onset of cluster seizures. CLINICAL FINDINGS At an emergency clinic, the cat had hyperimmunoglobulinemia and thrombocytopenia. On referral, treatment with levetiracetam, zonisamide, and phenobarbital initially provided good control of cluster seizure activity (attributable to epilepsy of unknow origin). Two weeks later, assessments revealed that serum phenobarbital concentration was within the ideal range but serum zonisamide concentration exceeded the recommended therapeutic range. The dosage of zonisamide was therefore decreased. Four days after dosage reduction, the cat developed generalized lymphadenopathy. Cytologic analysis of lymph node aspirate samples revealed a heterogeneous population of well-differentiated lymphocytes, interpreted as marked reactivity. Although neoplasia could not be ruled out, hypersensitivity to phenobarbital was suspected, and this treatment was discontinued. TREATMENT AND OUTCOME Despite cessation of phenobarbital administration, generalized peripheral lymphadenopathy progressed and hyperglobulinemia and cytopenias developed. These abnormalities resolved after discontinuation of zonisamide administration. The cat remained seizure free with no recurrence of the aforementioned concerns after reinstitution of phenobarbital treatment. CLINICAL RELEVANCE To the authors' knowledge, this is the first reported case of zonisamide-related lymphadenopathy, hyperglobulinemia, and cytopenias in a cat. Anticonvulsant hypersensitivity syndrome is well documented in human medicine, but little information has been published in the veterinary medical literature. Although the effects of anticonvulsant hypersensitivity syndrome in this cat were serious, these effects were reversible with treatment discontinuation.

  16. Astrocytic Adrenoceptors: A Major Drug Target in Neurological and Psychiatric Disorders

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-01-01

    phosphorylation was found mainly in microvessels and astrocytes.. B. Dysfunction 1. Multiple Sclerosis, Canine Distemper and EAE In order to initiate the...astrocytes is seen in canine distemper encephalitis, a demyelinating disease in dogs that closely resembles multiple sclerosis and is caused by a virus

  17. Neurotoxicity of Methylmercury in Isolated Astrocytes and Neurons: the Cytoskeleton as a Main Target.

    PubMed

    Pierozan, Paula; Biasibetti, Helena; Schmitz, Felipe; Ávila, Helena; Fernandes, Carolina Gonçalves; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina; Wyse, Angela T S

    2017-10-01

    In the present work, we focused on mechanisms of methylmercury (MeHg) toxicity in primary astrocytes and neurons of rats. Cortical astrocytes and neurons exposed to 0.5-5 μM MeHg present a link among morphological alterations, glutathione (GSH) depletion, glutamate dyshomeostasis, and cell death. Disrupted neuronal cytoskeleton was assessed by decreased neurite length and neurite/neuron ratio. Astrocytes presented reorganization of actin and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) networks and reduced cytoplasmic area. Glutamate uptake and Na + K + ATPase activity in MeHg-treated astrocytes were preserved; however, downregulated EAAC1-mediated glutamate uptake was associated with impaired Na + K + ATPase activity in neurons. Oxidative imbalance was found in astrocytes and neurons through increased 2'7'-dichlorofluorescein (DCF) production and misregulated superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), and glutathione reductase (GPX) activities. Glutathione (GSH) levels were downregulated in both astrocytes and neurons. MeHg reduced neuronal viability and induced caspase 3-dependent apoptosis together with downregulated PI3K/Akt pathway. In astrocytes, necrotic death was associated with increased TNF-α and JNK/MAPK activities. Cytoskeletal remodeling and cell death were fully prevented in astrocytes and neurons by GSH, but not melatonin or Trolox supplementation. These findings support a role for depleted GSH in the cytotoxicity of MeHg leading to disruption of the cytoskeleton and cell death. Moreover, in neurons, glutamate antagonists also prevented cytoskeletal disruption and neuronal death. We propose that cytoskeleton is an end point in MeHg cytotoxicity. Oxidative imbalance and glutamate mechanisms mediate MeHg cytoskeletal disruption and apoptosis in neurons. Otherwise, redox imbalance and glutamate-independent mechanisms disrupted the cytoskeleton and induced necrosis in MeHg-exposed astrocyte.

  18. Zonisamide reduces obstructive sleep apnoea: a randomised placebo-controlled study.

    PubMed

    Eskandari, Davoud; Zou, Ding; Karimi, Mahssa; Stenlöf, Kaj; Grote, Ludger; Hedner, Jan

    2014-07-01

    Carbonic anhydrase inhibition reduces apnoeic events in sleep disordered breathing. Zonisamide inhibits carbonic anhydrase, and induces weight loss in obese patients. This study explored the relative influence of these two properties, which may both alleviate obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) was used as a standard care comparator. 47 patients with moderate-to-severe OSA and a body mass index of 27-35 kg·m(-2) were randomised to receive either zonisamide, placebo or CPAP for 4 weeks. The open extension phase (20 weeks) compared CPAP and zonisamide. Polysomnography, biochemistry and symptoms were evaluated. At 4 weeks, zonisamide reduced apnoea/hypopnoea index (AHI) by a mean±sd 33±39% and oxygen desaturation index by 28±31% (p=0.02 and 0.014, respectively; placebo adjusted). The mean compliance adjusted reduction of AHI after zonisamide and CPAP was 13 and 61%, respectively, (p=0.001) at 24 weeks. Body weight was marginally changed at 4 weeks, but reduced after zonisamide and increased after CPAP at 24 weeks (-2.7±3.0 kg versus 2.3±2.0 kg, p<0.001). Zonisamide decreased bicarbonate at 4 and 24 weeks. Side-effects were more common after zonisamide. Zonisamide reduced OSA independent of body weight potentially by mechanisms related to carbonic anhydrase inhibition. The effect was less pronounced than that obtained by CPAP. © ERS 2014.

  19. A randomized, placebo-controlled study of zonisamide to prevent olanzapine-associated weight gain.

    PubMed

    McElroy, Susan L; Winstanley, Erin; Mori, Nicole; Martens, Brian; McCoy, Jessica; Moeller, Dianna; Guerdjikova, Anna I; Keck, Paul E

    2012-04-01

    Weight gain is commonly observed with olanzapine treatment. Zonisamide is an antiepileptic drug associated with weight loss. This study examined the effectiveness of zonisamide in preventing weight gain in 42 patients beginning olanzapine for bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. Each patient had a body mass index of 22 mg/kg or greater and was randomized to taking olanzapine with either zonisamide (n = 20) or placebo (n = 22) for 16 weeks. The primary outcome measure was change in body weight in kilograms from baseline. In the primary analysis using longitudinal regression, patients who received zonisamide had a significantly slower rate of weight gain and increase in body mass index than those who received placebo. The patients treated with zonisamide gained a mean (SD) of 0.9 (3.3) kg, whereas those treated with placebo gained a mean (SD) of 5.0 (5.5) kg; P = 0.01. None of the patients in the zonisamide group, compared with 7 patients (33%) in the placebo group, gained 7% of body weight or greater from baseline (Fisher exact test, P = 0.009). The zonisamide group, however, reported significantly more cognitive impairment as an adverse event than the placebo group (25% vs 0, respectively; P = 0.02). Zonisamide was effective for mitigating weight gain in patients with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia initiating treatment with olanzapine but was associated with cognitive impairment as an adverse event.

  20. Carnosine decreased neuronal cell death through targeting glutamate system and astrocyte mitochondrial bioenergetics in cultured neuron/astrocyte exposed to OGD/recovery.

    PubMed

    Ouyang, Li; Tian, Yueyang; Bao, Yun; Xu, Huijuan; Cheng, Jiaoyan; Wang, Bingyu; Shen, Yao; Chen, Zhong; Lyu, Jianxin

    2016-06-01

    Previously, we showed that carnosine upregulated the expression level of glutamate transporter 1 (GLT-1), which has been recognized as an important participant in the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS), with ischemic model in vitro and in vivo. This study was designed to investigate the protective effect of carnosine on neuron/astrocyte co-cultures exposed to OGD/recovery, and to explore whether the ANLS or any other mechanism contributes to carnosine-induced neuroprotection on neuron/astrocyte. Co-cultures were treated with carnosine and exposed to OGD/recovery. Cell death and the extracellular levels of glutamate and GABA were measured. The mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis were detected by Seahorse Bioscience XF96 Extracellular Flux Analyzer. Results showed that carnosine decreased neuronal cell death, increased extracellular GABA level, and abolished the increase in extracellular glutamate and reversed the mitochondrial energy metabolism disorder induced by OGD/recovery. Carnosine also upregulated the mRNA level of neuronal glutamate transporter EAAC1 at 2h after OGD. Dihydrokainate, a specific inhibitor of GLT-1, decreased glycolysis but it did not affect mitochondrial respiration of the cells, and it could not reverse the increase in mitochondrial OXPHOS induced by carnosine in the co-cultures. The levels of mRNAs for monocarboxylate transporter1, 4 (MCT1, 4), which were expressed in astrocytes, and MCT2, the main neuronal MCT, were significantly increased at the early stage of recovery. Carnosine only partly reversed the increased expression of astrocytic MCT1 and MCT4. These results suggest that regulating astrocytic energy metabolism and extracellular glutamate and GABA levels but not the ANLS are involved in the carnosine-induced neuroprotection. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. [A five-year-old girl with epilepsy showing forced normalization due to zonisamide].

    PubMed

    Hirose, Mieko; Yokoyama, Hiroyuki; Haginoya, Kazuhiro; Iinuma, Kazuie

    2003-05-01

    A case of forced normalization in childhood is presented. When zonisamide was administered to a five-year-old girl with intractable epilepsy, disappearance of seizures was accompanied by severe psychotic episodes such as communication disturbance, personal relationship failure, and stereotyped behavior, which continued after the withdrawal of zonisamide. These symptoms gradually improved by administration of fluvoxamine, however epileptic attacks reappeared. Although most patients with forced normalization are adult and teenager, attention should be paid to this phenomenon as adverse psychotic effects of zonisamide even in young children. Fluvoxamine may be effective for the symptoms.

  2. Randomized controlled trial of zonisamide for the treatment of refractory partial-onset seizures.

    PubMed

    Faught, E; Ayala, R; Montouris, G G; Leppik, I E

    2001-11-27

    Zonisamide is a sulfonamide antiepilepsy drug with sodium and calcium channel-blocking actions. Experience in Japan and a previous European double-blind study have demonstrated its efficacy against partial-onset seizures. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial enrolling 203 patients was conducted at 20 United States sites to assess zonisamide efficacy and dose response as adjunctive therapy for refractory partial-onset seizures. Zonisamide dosages were elevated by 100 mg/d each week. The study design allowed parallel comparisons with placebo for three dosages and a final crossover to 400 mg/d of zonisamide for all patients. The primary efficacy comparison was change in seizure frequency from a 4-week placebo baseline to weeks 8 through 12 on blinded therapy. At 400 mg/d, zonisamide reduced the median frequency of all seizures by 40.5% from baseline, compared with a 9% reduction (p = 0.0009) with placebo treatment, and produced a > or =50% seizure reduction (responder rate) in 42% of patients. A dosage of 100 mg/d produced a 20.5% reduction in median seizure frequency (p = 0.038 compared with placebo) and a dosage of 200 mg/d produced a 24.7% reduction in median seizure frequency (p = 0.004 compared with placebo). Dropouts from adverse events (10%) did not differ from placebo (8.2%, NS). The only adverse event differing significantly from placebo was weight loss, though somnolence, anorexia, and ataxia were slightly more common with zonisamide treatment. Serum zonisamide concentrations rose with increasing dose. Zonisamide is effective and well tolerated as an adjunctive agent for refractory partial-onset seizures. The minimal effective dosage was 100 mg/d, but 400 mg/d was the most effective dosage.

  3. Circular RNA HIPK2 regulates astrocyte activation via cooperation of autophagy and ER stress by targeting MIR124-2HG.

    PubMed

    Huang, Rongrong; Zhang, Yuan; Han, Bing; Bai, Ying; Zhou, Rongbin; Gan, Guangming; Chao, Jie; Hu, Gang; Yao, Honghong

    2017-10-03

    Circular RNAs are a subclass of noncoding RNAs in mammalian cells; however, whether these RNAs are involved in the regulation of astrocyte activation is largely unknown. Here, we have shown that the circular RNA HIPK2 (circHIPK2) functions as an endogenous microRNA-124 (MIR124-2HG) sponge to sequester MIR124-2HG and inhibit its activity, resulting in increased sigma non-opioid intracellular receptor 1 (SIGMAR1/OPRS1) expression. Knockdown of circHIPK2 expression significantly inhibited astrocyte activation via the regulation of autophagy and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress through the targeting of MIR124-2HG and SIGMAR1. These findings were confirmed in vivo in mouse models, as microinjection of a circHIPK2 siRNA lentivirus into mouse hippocampi inhibited astrocyte activation induced by methamphetamine or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). These findings provide novel insights regarding the specific contribution of circHIPK2 to astrocyte activation in the context of drug abuse as well as for the treatment of a broad range of neuroinflammatory disorders.

  4. Endothelial cell-derived nitric oxide enhances aerobic glycolysis in astrocytes via HIF-1α-mediated target gene activation.

    PubMed

    Brix, Britta; Mesters, Jeroen R; Pellerin, Luc; Jöhren, Olaf

    2012-07-11

    Astrocytes exhibit a prominent glycolytic activity, but whether such a metabolic profile is influenced by intercellular communication is unknown. Treatment of primary cultures of mouse cortical astrocytes with the nitric oxide (NO) donor DetaNONOate induced a time-dependent enhancement in the expression of genes encoding various glycolytic enzymes as well as transporters for glucose and lactate. Such an effect was shown to be dependent on the hypoxia-inducible factor HIF-1α, which is stabilized and translocated to the nucleus to exert its transcriptional regulation. NO action was dependent on both the PI3K/Akt/mTOR and MEK signaling pathways and required the activation of COX, but was independent of the soluble guanylate cyclase pathway. Furthermore, as a consequence of NO treatment, an enhanced lactate production and release by astrocytes was evidenced, which was prevented by downregulating HIF-1α. Several brain cell types represent possible sources of NO. It was found that endothelial cells, which express the endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) isoform, constitutively produced the largest amount of NO in culture. When astrocytes were cocultured with primary cultures of brain vascular endothelial cells, stabilization of HIF-1α and an enhancement in glucose transporter-1, hexokinase-2, and monocarboxylate transporter-4 expression as well as increased lactate production was found in astrocytes. This effect was inhibited by the NOS inhibitor l-NAME and was not seen when astrocytes were cocultured with primary cultures of cortical neurons. Our findings suggest that endothelial cell-derived NO participates to the maintenance of a high glycolytic activity in astrocytes mediated by astrocytic HIF-1α activation.

  5. Zonisamide for weight reduction in obese adults: a 1-year randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Gadde, Kishore M; Kopping, Mariko F; Wagner, H Ryan; Yonish, Gretchen M; Allison, David B; Bray, George A

    2012-11-12

    Obese individuals who have failed to achieve adequate weight loss with lifestyle changes have limited nonsurgical therapeutic options. We evaluated the efficacy and tolerability of zonisamide, an antiepileptic drug, for enhancing weight loss in obese patients receiving diet and lifestyle guidance. This was a 1-year, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial conducted from January 9, 2006, through September 20, 2011, at Duke University Medical Center. A total of 225 obese (mean [SD] body mass index, 37.6 [4.9]) participants included 134 women (59.6%) and 91 men (40.4%) without diabetes mellitus. (Body mass index is calculated as weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared.) Interventions were daily dosing with placebo (n = 74), 200 mg of zonisamide (n = 76), or 400 mg of zonisamide (n = 75), in addition to diet and lifestyle counseling by a dietitian for 1 year. Primary outcome was change in body weight at 1 year. Of the 225 randomized patients, 218 (96.9%) provided 1-year follow-up assessments. Change in body weight was -4.0 kg (95% CI, -5.8 to -2.3 kg; least squares mean, -3.7%) for placebo, -4.4 kg (-6.1 to -2.6 kg; -3.9%; P = .79 vs placebo) for 200 mg of zonisamide, and -7.3 kg (-9.0 to -5.6 kg; -6.8%; P = .009 vs placebo) for 400 mg of zonisamide. In the categorical analysis, 23 (31.1%) assigned to placebo, 26 (34.2%; P = .72) assigned to 200 mg of zonisamide, and 41 (54.7%; P = .007) assigned to 400 mg of zonisamide achieved 5% or greater weight loss; for 10% or greater weight loss, the corresponding numbers were 6 (8.1%), 17 (22.4%; P = .02), and 24 (32.0%; P < .001). Gastrointestinal, nervous system, and psychiatric adverse events occurred at a higher incidence with zonisamide than with placebo. Zonisamide at the daily dose of 400 mg moderately enhanced weight loss achieved with diet and lifestyle counseling but had a high incidence of adverse events. clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00275834

  6. rno-miR-665 targets BCL2L1 (Bcl-xl) and increases vulnerability to propofol in developing astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Wen-Chong; Pei, Ling

    2016-07-01

    Propofol exerts a cytotoxic influence over immature neurocytes. Our previous study revealed that clinically relevant doses of propofol accelerated apoptosis of primary cultured astrocytes of developing rodent brains via rno-miR-665 regulation. However, the role of rno-miR-665 during the growth spurt of neonatal rodent brains in vivo is still uncertain. Post-natal day 7 (P7) rats received a single injection of propofol 30 mg/kg intraperitoneally (i.p.), and neuroapoptosis of hippocampal astrocytes was analyzed by immunofluorescence and scanning electron microscopy. The differential expression of rno-miR-665, BCL2L1 (Bcl-xl), and cleaved caspase 3 (CC3) was surveyed by qRT-PCR and western blotting. In addition, the utility of A-1155463, a highly potent and BCL2L1-selective antagonist, was aimed to assess the contribution of BCL2L1 for neuroglial survival. Following the intraventricular injection of lentivirus rno-miR-665, neuroprotection was detected by 5-point scale measurement. The single dose of propofol 30 mg/kg triggered dose-dependent apoptosis of developing hippocampal astrocytes. Meanwhile, propofol triggered both rno-miR-665 and CC3, and depressed BCL2L1, which was predicted as one target gene of rno-miR-665. Combination treatment with A-1155463 and propofol induced lower mRNA and protein levels of BCL2L1 and more CC3 activation than propofol treatment alone in vivo. The lentivirus-mediated knockdown of rno-miR-665 elevated BCL2L1 and attenuated CC3 levels, whereas up-regulation of rno-miR-665 suppressed BCL2L1 and induced CC3 expression in vivo. More importantly, rno-miR-665 antagomir infusion improved neurological outcomes of pups receiving propofol during the brain growth spurt. Rno-miR-665, providing a potential target for alternative therapeutics for pediatric anesthesia, is susceptible to propofol by negatively targeting antiapoptotic BCL2L1. Relatively little is known about the association between exposure of astrocytes to brief propofol

  7. Zonisamide and renal calculi in patients with epilepsy: how big an issue?

    PubMed

    Wroe, Stephen

    2007-08-01

    To determine the prevalence of renal calculi in patients treated with zonisamide during randomized, controlled and open-label clinical trials, and from post-marketing surveillance data. Reports of renal calculi from four placebo-controlled double-blind trials of zonisamide, their long-term open-label treatment extension phases, and the US/European zonisamide clinical trial programme were reviewed. One double-blind study and its extension included routine ultrasound screening to identify asymptomatic calculi. Post-marketing surveillance data were also investigated, as was concomitant treatment with topiramate. No symptomatic renal calculi were reported during four randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trials involving 848 subjects (including 498 zonisamide recipients) treated for up to 3 months. In long-term extension studies with treatment for up to 24 months, symptomatic renal calculi were reported in 9/626 (1.4%) patients. Pooled safety data from all US/European clinical trials identified 15/1296 (1.2%) patients with symptomatic renal calculi during treatment for up to 8.7 years. Post-marketing surveillance revealed nine cases from 59 667 patient-years of exposure in the USA, and 14 from 709 294 patient-years of exposure in Japan; only one case occurred during concomitant topiramate and zonisamide treatment. No imbalance in electrolyte levels was found from 35 patients receiving such co-treatment in clinical trials. The available data suggest that the risk of developing renal calculi during zonisamide treatment is low. Data are insufficient to determine whether concomitant treatment with topiramate increases the risk of renal stones.

  8. Propofol-induced rno-miR-665 targets BCL2L1 and influences apoptosis in rodent developing hippocampal astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Wen-Chong; Liang, Zuo-Di; Pei, Ling

    2015-12-01

    Propofol exerts neurotoxic effects on the developing mammalian brains, but the underlying molecular mechanism remains unclear. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small noncoding RNAs that modulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. However, in specific types of neurocytes, the detailed functions of miRNAs were not entirely understood. We investigated the potential role of miRNAs in astrocyte pathogenesis caused by propofol. We performed genome-wide microRNA expression profiling in immature cultured hippocampal astrocytes by microarray analysis and predicted their targets and functions using bioinformatics tools. The functional effects of one differentially expressed miRNA were examined experimentally in relation to astrocyte viability. The results showed that 13 miRNAs were significantly differentially expressed after both short-term exposure to high-concentration propofol (10 μg/ml for 1h) and long-term exposure to low-concentration propofol (0.9 μg/ml for 48 h), including rno-miR-665, differing significantly between the 2. Bioinformatics predicted putative binding sites for rno-miR-665 existing in the 3'-untranslated region of Bcl-2-like protein 1 BCL2L1 (Bcl-xl) mRNA. Moreover, such relationship was assessed by luciferase reporter assay, qRT-PCR and western blot. Rno-miR-665 which was significantly up-regulated by propofol can suppress BCL2L1 and elevate cleaved caspase-3 expression in immature astrocytes in vitro. Apoptosis of developing hippocampal astrocytes was thus significantly influenced by propofol or rno-miR-665, or both. Taken together, rno-miR-665 is involved in the neurotoxicity induced by propofol via a caspase-3 mediated mechanism by negatively regulating BCL2L1. It might act as an alternative therapeutic target for treatment of neurological disorders in peadiatric prolonged anesthesia or sedation with propofol clinically. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. Two nursing mothers treated with zonisamide: Should breast-feeding be avoided?

    PubMed

    Ando, Hitoshi; Matsubara, Shigeki; Oi, Asako; Usui, Rie; Suzuki, Mitsuaki; Fujimura, Akio

    2014-01-01

    Zonisamide, an antiepileptic drug, is excreted into breast milk, but information regarding the safety of breast-feeding while using this drug is limited. We present the cases of two nursing mothers, taking 300 and 100 mg/day zonisamide. At 5 days after delivery, the milk concentrations and relative infant doses of the drug were 18.0 and 5.1 μg/mL, and 44 and 36%, respectively. In the first case, the mother fed colostrum and continued partial breast-feeding thus reducing the relative infant dose to 8%. The neonatal serum concentration of zonisamide declined to below the limit of detection at day 34 after birth. In the second case, the mother breast-fed partially until 2 weeks postpartum. No adverse effect was observed in the infants. These findings suggest that mothers taking zonisamide should not breast-feed exclusively, but may not have to avoid partial breast-feeding, with significant caution regarding adverse effects in infants. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research © 2013 Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

  10. Comparative trial of low- and high-dose zonisamide as monotherapy for childhood epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Eun, So-Hee; Kim, Heung Dong; Eun, Baik-Lin; Lee, In Kyu; Chung, Hee Jung; Kim, Joon Sik; Kang, Hoon-Chul; Lee, Young-Mock; Suh, Eun Sook; Kim, Dong Wook; Eom, Soyong; Lee, Joon Soo; Moon, Han Ku

    2011-09-01

    To evaluate the effectiveness of zonisamide (ZNS) as monotherapy in children with newly diagnosed epilepsy. This randomized, multicenter trial included a 2-4-week titration and a 24-week maintenance phase after randomization to low-(3-4 mg/kg/day) or high-(6-8 mg/kg/day) dose groups as target maintenance dosages. The primary outcome measure was the seizure-free rate over 6 months, while a secondary measure was the change in cognition and behavior from screening to the end of the maintenance phase. Out of 125 patients enrolled, 90 (49 low-dose and 41 high-dose) completed the study. Forty-one patients (63.1%) in the low-dose group and 34(57.6%) in the high-dose group achieved 6 months' freedom from seizures (p=0.66). After treatment, the picture arrangement subtest improved in the low-dose group (p=0.047) while the vocabulary subtest worsened in the high-dose group (p=0.020). Comparing between the two groups, the vocabulary subtest in the high-dose group was significantly worse than that in the low-dose group (p=0.002). Social competence, somatic complaints, depression/anxiety and delinquent and aggressive behavior in the low-dose group were significantly improved (p<0.05). Moreover, total social competence, somatic complaints, delinquent behavior, externalizing, and total behavior problems were significantly more improved in the low-dose group than the high-dose group (p<0.05). ZNS is an effective monotherapy for newly diagnosed childhood epilepsy. Lower doses of ZNS have a similar efficacy and more beneficial neurocognitive effects compared to higher doses. When prescribing higher doses of ZNS, one must be aware of the possible manifestation of problems associated with language development, such as those affecting vocabulary acquisition. Copyright © 2011 British Epilepsy Association. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Novel insight into circular RNA HECTD1 in astrocyte activation via autophagy by targeting MIR142-TIPARP: Implications for cerebral ischemic stroke.

    PubMed

    Han, Bing; Zhang, Yuan; Zhang, Yanhong; Bai, Ying; Chen, Xufeng; Huang, Rongrong; Wu, Fangfang; Leng, Shuo; Chao, Jie; Zhang, John H; Hu, Gang; Yao, Honghong

    2018-06-25

    Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are highly expressed in the central nervous system and are involved in the regulation of physiological and pathophysiological processes. However, the potential role of circRNAs in stroke remains largely unknown. Here, using a circRNA microarray, we showed that circular RNA Hectd1 (circHectd1) levels were significantly increased in ischemic brain tissues in transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (tMCAO) mouse stroke models and further validated this finding in plasma samples from acute ischemic stroke (AIS) patients. Knockdown of circHectd1 expression significantly decreased infarct areas, attenuated neuronal deficits, and ameliorated astrocyte activation in tMCAO mice. Mechanistically, circHECTD1 functions as an endogenous MIR142 (microRNA 142) sponge to inhibit MIR142 activity, resulting in the inhibition of TIPARP (TCDD inducible poly[ADP-ribose] polymerase) expression with subsequent inhibition of astrocyte activation via macroautophagy/autophagy. Taken together, the results of our study indicate that circHECTD1 and its coupling mechanism are involved in cerebral ischemia, thus providing translational evidence that circHECTD1 can serve as a novel biomarker of and therapeutic target for stroke.

  12. Weight changes in obese adults 6-months after discontinuation of double-blind zonisamide or placebo treatment

    PubMed Central

    Shin, J.H.; Gadde, K.M.; Øtbye, T.; Bray, Bray

    2014-01-01

    We evaluated weight changes in obese patients at 6-months after they ended participation in a 12-month randomized controlled trial in which they received daily placebo, zonisamide 200 mg, or zonisamide 400 mg, in addition to lifestyle counseling. Of the originally randomized 225 patients, 218 completed month-12 when study interventions were discontinued. For the 154 patients who returned for 6-month follow-up off-treatment, weight changes between month-12 and month-18 for placebo (n=53), zonisamide 200 mg (n=49), and zonisamide 400 mg groups (n=52) were 0.5 kg (95% CI, −0.8 to 1.8; 0.7%), 1.5 kg (0.2 to 2.8; 1.6%; p=0.26 vs placebo) and 2.4 kg (1.1 to 3.7; 2.6%; p=0.04 vs placebo), respectively. Our results suggest that although zonisamide 400 mg daily for 12-months resulted in greater weight loss than with placebo, weight regain after discontinuation of interventions was greater in the zonisamide 400 mg group than placebo group. PMID:25123600

  13. Disentangling the role of astrocytes in alcohol use disorder

    PubMed Central

    Adermark, Louise; Bowers, M. Scott

    2016-01-01

    Several laboratories recently identified that astrocytes are critical regulators of addiction machinery. It is now known that astrocyte pathology is a common feature of ethanol exposure in both humans and animal models, as even brief ethanol exposure is sufficient to elicit long-lasting perturbations in astrocyte gene expression, activity, and proliferation. Astrocytes were also recently shown to modulate the motivational properties of ethanol and other strongly reinforcing stimuli. Given the role of astrocytes in regulating glutamate homeostasis, a crucial component of alcohol use disorder, astrocytes might be an important target for the development of next generation alcoholism treatments. This review will outline some of the more prominent features displayed by astrocytes, how these properties are influenced by acute and long term ethanol exposure, and future directions that may help to disentangle astrocytic from neuronal functions in the etiology of alcohol use disorder. PMID:27476876

  14. Astrocytes and energy metabolism.

    PubMed

    Prebil, Mateja; Jensen, Jørgen; Zorec, Robert; Kreft, Marko

    2011-05-01

    Astrocytes are glial cells, which play a significant role in a number of processes, including the brain energy metabolism. Their anatomical position between blood vessels and neurons make them an interface for effective glucose uptake from blood. After entering astrocytes, glucose can be involved in different metabolic pathways, e.g. in glycogen production. Glycogen in the brain is localized mainly in astrocytes and is an important energy source in hypoxic conditions and normal brain functioning. The portion of glucose metabolized into glycogen molecules in astrocytes is as high as 40%. It is thought that the release of gliotransmitters (such as glutamate, neuroactive peptides and ATP) into the extracellular space by regulated exocytosis supports a significant part of communication between astrocytes and neurons. On the other hand, neurotransmitter action on astrocytes has a significant role in brain energy metabolism. Therefore, understanding the astrocytes energy metabolism may help understanding neuron-astrocyte interactions.

  15. Development of antibody-modified chitosan nanoparticles for the targeted delivery of siRNA across the blood-brain barrier as a strategy for inhibiting HIV replication in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Gu, Jijin; Al-Bayati, Karam; Ho, Emmanuel A

    2017-08-01

    RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated gene silencing offers a novel treatment and prevention strategy for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. HIV was found to infect and replicate in human brain cells and can cause neuroinfections and neurological deterioration. We designed dual-antibody-modified chitosan/small interfering RNA (siRNA) nanoparticles to deliver siRNA across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) targeting HIV-infected brain astrocytes as a strategy for inhibiting HIV replication. We hypothesized that transferrin antibody and bradykinin B2 antibody could specifically bind to the transferrin receptor (TfR) and bradykinin B2 receptor (B2R), respectively, and deliver siRNA across the BBB into astrocytes as potential targeting ligands. In this study, chitosan nanoparticles (CS-NPs) were prepared by a complex coacervation method in the presence of siRNA, and antibody was chemically conjugated to the nanoparticles. The antibody-modified chitosan nanoparticles (Ab-CS-NPs) were spherical in shape, with an average particle size of 235.7 ± 10.2 nm and a zeta potential of 22.88 ± 1.78 mV. The therapeutic potential of the nanoparticles was evaluated based on their cellular uptake and gene silencing efficiency. Cellular accumulation and gene silencing efficiency of Ab-CS-NPs in astrocytes were significantly improved compared to non-modified CS-NPs and single-antibody-modified CS-NPs. These results suggest that the combination of anti-Tf antibody and anti-B2 antibody significantly increased the knockdown effect of siRNA-loaded nanoparticles. Thus, antibody-mediated dual-targeting nanoparticles are an efficient and promising delivery strategy for inhibiting HIV replication in astrocytes. Graphical abstract Graphic representation of dual-antibody-conjugated chitosan nanoparticles for the targeted delivery of siRNA across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) for inhibiting HIV replication in astrocytes. a Nanoparticle delivery to the BBB and penetration. b Tf

  16. Manganese inhibits the ability of astrocytes to promote neuronal differentiation

    SciTech Connect

    Giordano, Gennaro; Pizzurro, Daniella; VanDeMark, Kathryn

    Manganese (Mn) is a known neurotoxicant and developmental neurotoxicant. As Mn has been shown to accumulate in astrocytes, we sought to investigate whether Mn would alter astrocyte-neuronal interactions, specifically the ability of astrocytes to promote differentiation of neurons. We found that exposure of rat cortical astrocytes to Mn (50-500 {mu}M) impaired their ability to promote axonal and neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. This effect of Mn appeared to be mediated by oxidative stress, as it was reversed by antioxidants (melatonin and PBN) and by increasing glutathione levels, while it was potentiated by glutathione depletion in astrocytes. As the extracellular matrixmore » protein fibronectin plays an important role in astrocyte-mediated neuronal neurite outgrowth, we also investigated the effect of Mn on fibronectin. Mn caused a concentration-dependent decrease of fibronectin protein and mRNA in astrocytes lysate and of fibronectin protein in astrocyte medium; these effects were also antagonized by antioxidants. Exposure of astrocytes to two oxidants, H{sub 2}O{sub 2} and DMNQ, similarly impaired their neuritogenic action, and led to a decreased expression of fibronectin. Mn had no inhibitory effect on neurite outgrowth when applied directly onto hippocampal neurons, where it actually caused a small increase in neuritogenesis. These results indicate that Mn, by targeting astrocytes, affects their ability to promote neuronal differentiation by a mechanism which is likely to involve oxidative stress.« less

  17. The multi-dimensional roles of astrocytes in ALS.

    PubMed

    Yamanaka, Koji; Komine, Okiru

    2018-01-01

    Despite significant progress in understanding the molecular and genetic aspects of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons, the precise and comprehensive pathomechanisms remain largely unknown. In addition to motor neuron involvement, recent studies using cellular and animal models of ALS indicate that there is a complex interplay between motor neurons and neighboring non-neuronal cells, such as astrocytes, in non-cell autonomous neurodegeneration. Astrocytes are key homeostatic cells that play numerous supportive roles in maintaining the brain environment. In neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS, astrocytes change their shape and molecular expression patterns and are referred to as reactive or activated astrocytes. Reactive astrocytes in ALS lose their beneficial functions and gain detrimental roles. In addition, interactions between motor neurons and astrocytes are impaired in ALS. In this review, we summarize growing evidence that astrocytes are critically involved in the survival and demise of motor neurons through several key molecules and cascades in astrocytes in both sporadic and inherited ALS. These observations strongly suggest that astrocytes have multi-dimensional roles in disease and are a viable therapeutic target for ALS. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. The effect of zonisamide on antipsychotic-associated weight gain in patients with schizophrenia: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Ghanizadeh, Ahmad; Nikseresht, Mohammad Saeed; Sahraian, Ali

    2013-06-01

    Many patients with schizophrenia suffer from metabolic symptoms and weight gain in which predispose them to obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems. This trial examines the efficacy and safety of zonisamide on weight and body mass index in patients with schizophrenia being administered with atypical antipsychotics. In this 10-week, double blind randomized placebo controlled clinical trial, forty one patients with schizophrenia diagnosed according to DSM-IV-TR criteria who were taking a stable dose of atypical antipsychotic are allocated into one of the two groups of zonisamide or placebo group. Weight, body mass index, waist circumference, and adverse effects were assessed. The two groups were not statistically different regarding baseline characteristics on age, gender, education, diagnosis, weight, body mass index, daily cigarette smoking, and the duration of illness. After 10 weeks, the patients in the placebo group had significantly gained weight, while the patients in the zonisamide group lost weight (mean=1.9, SD=2.2 versus mean=-1.1 kg, SD=1.4). The changes of body mass index in the two groups were significantly different. Body mass index decreased in the zonisamide group (mean=-0.3, SD=0.4) while it increased in the placebo group (mean=2.2, SD=6.9). There was a significance difference between the two groups regarding waist circumference at the end of trial (P<0.0001), too. The waist increased in the placebo group while it decreased in the zonisamide group (mean=1.1, SD=1.7 versus mean=-0.7, SD=1.2, respectively), as well. The frequencies of adverse effects were not significantly different between the two groups and zonisamide was tolerated well. Zonisamide as an adjuvant treatment is tolerated well and markedly affect on the weight loss of patients with schizophrenia being treated with atypical antipsychotics. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Astrocytes in physiological aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Arellano, J J; Parpura, V; Zorec, R; Verkhratsky, A

    2016-05-26

    Astrocytes are fundamental for homoeostasis, defence and regeneration of the central nervous system. Loss of astroglial function and astroglial reactivity contributes to the aging of the brain and to neurodegenerative diseases. Changes in astroglia in aging and neurodegeneration are highly heterogeneous and region-specific. In animal models of Alzheimer's disease (AD) astrocytes undergo degeneration and atrophy at the early stages of pathological progression, which possibly may alter the homeostatic reserve of the brain and contribute to early cognitive deficits. At later stages of AD reactive astrocytes are associated with neurite plaques, the feature commonly found in animal models and in human diseased tissue. In animal models of the AD reactive astrogliosis develops in some (e.g. in the hippocampus) but not in all regions of the brain. For instance, in entorhinal and prefrontal cortices astrocytes do not mount gliotic response to emerging β-amyloid deposits. These deficits in reactivity coincide with higher vulnerability of these regions to AD-type pathology. Astroglial morphology and function can be regulated through environmental stimulation and/or medication suggesting that astrocytes can be regarded as a target for therapies aimed at the prevention and cure of neurodegenerative disorders. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Zonisamide in Brain Tumor-Related Epilepsy: An Observational Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Maschio, Marta; Dinapoli, Loredana; Zarabla, Alessia; Maialetti, Andrea; Giannarelli, Diana; Fabi, Alessandra; Vidiri, Antonello; Cantelmi, Tonino

    Epilepsy heavily affects the quality of life (QoL) of patients with brain tumor because in addition to taking treatments for the oncological illness, patients are required to live with the long-term taking of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). The AEDs' adverse effects are common in these patients and can negatively influence their perceptions of their QoL.We conducted an observational pilot study in patients with brain tumor-related epilepsy to verify efficacy, tolerability, and impact on QoL and global neurocognitive performances of zonisamide (ZNS) in add-on. We recruited 13 patients (5 females, 8 males; mean age, 49.6 years) presenting uncontrolled seizures. At first visit and at final follow-up at 6 months, patients underwent neurological examination, evaluation of adverse events, and cognitive and QoL tests. A seizure diary was given. Eight patients underwent chemotherapy, 3 underwent radiotherapy, and 5 had disease progression. Mean dosage of ZNS at final follow-up was 300 mg/d.Of 9 patients who reached the sixth month follow-up, the mean weekly seizure number before ZNS had been 3.2 ± 5.0, and at final follow-up, the mean weekly seizure number was 0.18 ± 0.41 (P = 0.05).Compared with baseline, we observed stability in all cognitive domains, except for verbal fluency that significantly worsened.Results on QoL tests showed that QoL remained unchanged over time, which could indicate that ZNS did not influence the patients' perceived QoL. Zonisamide as add-on in our patients seems to be well tolerated and efficacious in controlling seizures. Despite having limitations represented by the fact that our study is observational, with a small study population and a short follow-up period, our results confirm that when choosing an AED, in addition to efficacy, the drug's effect on patients' QoL also needs to be considered, especially for patients facing many psychosocial challenges, such as those with brain tumor-related epilepsy.

  1. Mechanisms of Endogenous Neuroprotective Effects of Astrocytes in Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    2018-01-01

    Astrocytes, once believed to serve only as “glue” for the structural support of neurons, have been demonstrated to serve critical functions for the maintenance and protection of neurons, especially under conditions of acute or chronic injury. There are at least seven distinct mechanisms by which astrocytes protect neurons from damage; these are (1) protection against glutamate toxicity, (2) protection against redox stress, (3) mediation of mitochondrial repair mechanisms, (4) protection against glucose-induced metabolic stress, (5) protection against iron toxicity, (6) modulation of the immune response in the brain, and (7) maintenance of tissue homeostasis in the presence of DNA damage. Astrocytes support these critical functions through specialized responses to stress or toxic conditions. The detoxifying activities of astrocytes are essential for maintenance of the microenvironment surrounding neurons and in whole tissue homeostasis. Improved understanding of the mechanisms by which astrocytes protect the brain could lead to the development of novel targets for the development of neuroprotective strategies.

  2. Urolithiasis on the ketogenic diet with concurrent topiramate or zonisamide therapy

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Elahna; Conant, Kerry D.; Dunne, Irie E.; Pfeifer, Heidi H.; Lyczkowski, David A.; Linshaw, Michael A.; Thiele, Elizabeth A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Children with refractory epilepsy who are co-treated with the ketogenic diet (KD) and carbonic anhydrase inhibitor (CA-I) anti-epileptic medications including topiramate (TPM) and zonisamide (ZNS) are at risk for urolithiasis. Retrospective chart review of all children treated with ketogenic therapy at our institution was performed in order to estimate the minimal risk of developing signs or symptoms of stone disease. Children (N = 93) were classified into groups according to KD +/− CA-I co-therapy. Fourteen patients had occult hematuria or worse, including 6 with radiologically confirmed stones. Three of 6 calculi developed in the KD + ZNS group of 17 patients who were co-treated for a cumulative total of 97 months (3.1 stones per 100 patient months). One confirmed stone was in the KD + TPM group of 22 children who were co-treated for a cumulative total of 263 months (0.4 stones per 100 patient months). All six patients had at least three of five biochemical risk factors including metabolic acidosis, concentrated urine, acid urine, hypercalciuria and hypocitraturia. Standard of care interventions to minimize hypercalciuria, crystalluria and stone formation used routinely by pediatric nephrologists should also be prescribed by neurologists treating patients with combination anti-epileptic therapy. Non-fasting KD initiation, fluid liberalization, potassium citrate prophylaxis as well as regular laboratory surveillance are indicated in this high risk population. PMID:20466520

  3. T cells' immunological synapses induce polarization of brain astrocytes in vivo and in vitro: a novel astrocyte response mechanism to cellular injury.

    PubMed

    Barcia, Carlos; Sanderson, Nicholas S R; Barrett, Robert J; Wawrowsky, Kolja; Kroeger, Kurt M; Puntel, Mariana; Liu, Chunyan; Castro, Maria G; Lowenstein, Pedro R

    2008-08-20

    Astrocytes usually respond to trauma, stroke, or neurodegeneration by undergoing cellular hypertrophy, yet, their response to a specific immune attack by T cells is poorly understood. Effector T cells establish specific contacts with target cells, known as immunological synapses, during clearance of virally infected cells from the brain. Immunological synapses mediate intercellular communication between T cells and target cells, both in vitro and in vivo. How target virally infected astrocytes respond to the formation of immunological synapses established by effector T cells is unknown. Herein we demonstrate that, as a consequence of T cell attack, infected astrocytes undergo dramatic morphological changes. From normally multipolar cells, they become unipolar, extending a major protrusion towards the immunological synapse formed by the effector T cells, and withdrawing most of their finer processes. Thus, target astrocytes become polarized towards the contacting T cells. The MTOC, the organizer of cell polarity, is localized to the base of the protrusion, and Golgi stacks are distributed throughout the protrusion, reaching distally towards the immunological synapse. Thus, rather than causing astrocyte hypertrophy, antiviral T cells cause a major structural reorganization of target virally infected astrocytes. Astrocyte polarization, as opposed to hypertrophy, in response to T cell attack may be due to T cells providing a very focused attack, and thus, astrocytes responding in a polarized manner. A similar polarization of Golgi stacks towards contacting T cells was also detected using an in vitro allogeneic model. Thus, different T cells are able to induce polarization of target astrocytes. Polarization of target astrocytes in response to immunological synapses may play an important role in regulating the outcome of the response of astrocytes to attacking effector T cells, whether during antiviral (e.g. infected during HIV, HTLV-1, HSV-1 or LCMV infection), anti

  4. Astrocyte deletion of Bmal1 alters daily locomotor activity and cognitive functions via GABA signalling

    PubMed Central

    Barca-Mayo, Olga; Pons-Espinal, Meritxell; Follert, Philipp; Armirotti, Andrea; Berdondini, Luca; De Pietri Tonelli, Davide

    2017-01-01

    Circadian rhythms are controlled by a network of clock neurons in the central pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN). Core clock genes, such as Bmal1, are expressed in SCN neurons and in other brain cells, such as astrocytes. However, the role of astrocytic clock genes in controlling rhythmic behaviour is unknown. Here we show that ablation of Bmal1 in GLAST-positive astrocytes alters circadian locomotor behaviour and cognition in mice. Specifically, deletion of astrocytic Bmal1 has an impact on the neuronal clock through GABA signalling. Importantly, pharmacological modulation of GABAA-receptor signalling completely rescues the behavioural phenotypes. Our results reveal a crucial role of astrocytic Bmal1 for the coordination of neuronal clocks and propose a new cellular target, astrocytes, for neuropharmacology of transient or chronic perturbation of circadian rhythms, where alteration of astrocytic clock genes might contribute to the impairment of the neurobehavioural outputs such as cognition. PMID:28186121

  5. Why are astrocytes important?

    PubMed

    Verkhratsky, Alexei; Nedergaard, Maiken; Hertz, Leif

    2015-02-01

    Astrocytes, which populate the grey and white mater of the brain and the spinal cord are highly heterogeneous in their morphology and function. These cells are primarily responsible for homeostasis of the central nervous system (CNS). Most central synapses are surrounded by exceedingly thin astroglial perisynaptic processes, which act as "astroglial cradle" critical for genesis, maturation and maintenance of synaptic connectivity. The perisynaptic glial processes are densely packed with numerous transporters, which provide for homeostasis of ions and neurotransmitters in the synaptic cleft, for local metabolic support and for release of astroglial derived scavengers of reactive oxygen species. Through perivascular processes astrocytes contribute to blood-brain barrier and form "glymphatic" drainage system of the CNS. Furthermore astrocytes are indispensible for glutamatergic and γ-aminobutyrate-ergic synaptic transmission being the supplier of neurotransmitters precursor glutamine via an astrocytic/neuronal cycle. Pathogenesis of many neurological disorders, including neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative diseases is defined by loss of homeostatic function (astroglial asthenia) or remodelling of astroglial homoeostatic capabilities. Astroglial cells further contribute to neuropathologies through mounting complex defensive programme generally known as reactive astrogliosis.

  6. The role of astrocytes in multiple sclerosis pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Guerrero-García, J J

    2017-09-25

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a demyelinating autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS), in which astrocytes play an important role as CNS immune cells. However, the activity of astrocytes as antigen-presenting cells (APC) continues to be subject to debate. This review analyses the existing evidence on the participation of astrocytes in CNS inflammation in MS and on several mechanisms that modify astrocyte activity in the disease. Astrocytes play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of MS because they express toll-like receptors (TLR) and major histocompatibility complex (MHC) classI andII. In addition, astrocytes participate in regulating the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and in modulating T cell activity through the production of cytokines. Future studies should focus on the role of astrocytes in order to find new therapeutic targets for the treatment of MS. Copyright © 2017 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  7. Study on the interaction of the epilepsy drug, zonisamide with human serum albumin (HSA) by spectroscopic and molecular docking techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahabadi, Nahid; Khorshidi, Aref; Moghadam, Neda Hossinpour

    2013-10-01

    In the present investigation, an attempt has been made to study the interaction of zonisamide (ZNS) with the transport protein, human serum albumin (HSA) employing UV-Vis, fluorometric, circular dichroism (CD) and molecular docking techniques. The results indicated that binding of ZNS to HSA caused strong fluorescence quenching of HSA through static quenching mechanism, hydrogen bonds and van der Waals contacts are the major forces in the stability of protein ZNS complex and the process of the binding of ZNS with HSA was driven by enthalpy (ΔH = -193.442 kJ mol-1). The results of CD and UV-Vis spectroscopy showed that the binding of this drug to HSA induced conformational changes in HSA. Furthermore, the study of molecular docking also indicated that zonisamide could strongly bind to the site I (subdomain IIA) of HSA mainly by hydrophobic interaction and there were hydrogen bond interactions between this drug and HSA, also known as the warfarin binding site.

  8. Astrocytic control of synaptic function.

    PubMed

    Papouin, Thomas; Dunphy, Jaclyn; Tolman, Michaela; Foley, Jeannine C; Haydon, Philip G

    2017-03-05

    Astrocytes intimately interact with synapses, both morphologically and, as evidenced in the past 20 years, at the functional level. Ultrathin astrocytic processes contact and sometimes enwrap the synaptic elements, sense synaptic transmission and shape or alter the synaptic signal by releasing signalling molecules. Yet, the consequences of such interactions in terms of information processing in the brain remain very elusive. This is largely due to two major constraints: (i) the exquisitely complex, dynamic and ultrathin nature of distal astrocytic processes that renders their investigation highly challenging and (ii) our lack of understanding of how information is encoded by local and global fluctuations of intracellular calcium concentrations in astrocytes. Here, we will review the existing anatomical and functional evidence of local interactions between astrocytes and synapses, and how it underlies a role for astrocytes in the computation of synaptic information.This article is part of the themed issue 'Integrating Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  9. Modulation of Astrocyte Activity by Cannabidiol, a Nonpsychoactive Cannabinoid

    PubMed Central

    Kozela, Ewa; Juknat, Ana; Vogel, Zvi

    2017-01-01

    The astrocytes have gained in recent decades an enormous interest as a potential target for neurotherapies, due to their essential and pleiotropic roles in brain physiology and pathology. Their precise regulation is still far from understood, although several candidate molecules/systems arise as promising targets for astrocyte-mediated neuroregulation and/or neuroprotection. The cannabinoid system and its ligands have been shown to interact and affect activities of astrocytes. Cannabidiol (CBD) is the main non-psychotomimetic cannabinoid derived from Cannabis. CBD is devoid of direct CB1 and CB2 receptor activity, but exerts a number of important effects in the brain. Here, we attempt to sum up the current findings on the effects of CBD on astrocyte activity, and in this way on central nervous system (CNS) functions, across various tested models and neuropathologies. The collected data shows that increased astrocyte activity is suppressed in the presence of CBD in models of ischemia, Alzheimer-like and Multiple-Sclerosis-like neurodegenerations, sciatic nerve injury, epilepsy, and schizophrenia. Moreover, CBD has been shown to decrease proinflammatory functions and signaling in astrocytes. PMID:28788104

  10. Modulation of Astrocyte Activity by Cannabidiol, a Nonpsychoactive Cannabinoid.

    PubMed

    Kozela, Ewa; Juknat, Ana; Vogel, Zvi

    2017-07-31

    The astrocytes have gained in recent decades an enormous interest as a potential target for neurotherapies, due to their essential and pleiotropic roles in brain physiology and pathology. Their precise regulation is still far from understood, although several candidate molecules/systems arise as promising targets for astrocyte-mediated neuroregulation and/or neuroprotection. The cannabinoid system and its ligands have been shown to interact and affect activities of astrocytes. Cannabidiol (CBD) is the main non-psychotomimetic cannabinoid derived from Cannabis . CBD is devoid of direct CB1 and CB2 receptor activity, but exerts a number of important effects in the brain. Here, we attempt to sum up the current findings on the effects of CBD on astrocyte activity, and in this way on central nervous system (CNS) functions, across various tested models and neuropathologies. The collected data shows that increased astrocyte activity is suppressed in the presence of CBD in models of ischemia, Alzheimer-like and Multiple-Sclerosis-like neurodegenerations, sciatic nerve injury, epilepsy, and schizophrenia. Moreover, CBD has been shown to decrease proinflammatory functions and signaling in astrocytes.

  11. Spinal astrocyte gap junctions contribute to oxaliplatin-induced mechanical hypersensitivity.

    PubMed

    Yoon, Seo-Yeon; Robinson, Caleb R; Zhang, Haijun; Dougherty, Patrick M

    2013-02-01

    Spinal glial cells contribute to the development of many types of inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Here the contribution of spinal astrocytes and astrocyte gap junctions to oxaliplatin-induced mechanical hypersensitivity was explored. The expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) in spinal dorsal horn was significantly increased at day 7 but recovered at day 14 after oxaliplatin treatment, suggesting a transient activation of spinal astrocytes by chemotherapy. Astrocyte-specific gap junction protein connexin 43 (Cx43) was significantly increased in dorsal horn at both day 7 and day 14 following chemotherapy, but neuronal (connexin 36 [Cx36]) and oligodendrocyte (connexin 32 [Cx32]) gap junction proteins did not show any change. Blockade of astrocyte gap junction with carbenoxolone (CBX) prevented oxaliplatin-induced mechanical hypersensitivity in a dose-dependent manner and the increase of spinal GFAP expression, but had no effect once the mechanical hypersensitivity induced by oxaliplatin had fully developed. These results suggest that oxaliplatin chemotherapy induces the activation of spinal astrocytes and this is accompanied by increased expression of astrocyte-astrocyte gap junction connections via Cx43. These alterations in spinal astrocytes appear to contribute to the induction but not the maintenance of oxaliplatin-induced mechanical hypersensitivity. Combined, these results suggest that targeting spinal astrocyte/astrocyte-specific gap junction could be a new therapeutic strategy to prevent oxaliplatin-induced neuropathy. Spinal astrocytes but not microglia were recently shown to be recruited in paclitaxel-related chemoneuropathy. Here, spinal astrocyte gap junctions are shown to play an important role in the induction of oxaliplatin neuropathy. Copyright © 2013 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. High-Throughput Phenotypic Screening of Human Astrocytes to Identify Compounds That Protect Against Oxidative Stress.

    PubMed

    Thorne, Natasha; Malik, Nasir; Shah, Sonia; Zhao, Jean; Class, Bradley; Aguisanda, Francis; Southall, Noel; Xia, Menghang; McKew, John C; Rao, Mahendra; Zheng, Wei

    2016-05-01

    Astrocytes are the predominant cell type in the nervous system and play a significant role in maintaining neuronal health and homeostasis. Recently, astrocyte dysfunction has been implicated in the pathogenesis of many neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Astrocytes are thus an attractive new target for drug discovery for neurological disorders. Using astrocytes differentiated from human embryonic stem cells, we have developed an assay to identify compounds that protect against oxidative stress, a condition associated with many neurodegenerative diseases. This phenotypic oxidative stress assay has been optimized for high-throughput screening in a 1,536-well plate format. From a screen of approximately 4,100 bioactive tool compounds and approved drugs, we identified a set of 22 that acutely protect human astrocytes from the consequences of hydrogen peroxide-induced oxidative stress. Nine of these compounds were also found to be protective of induced pluripotent stem cell-differentiated astrocytes in a related assay. These compounds are thought to confer protection through hormesis, activating stress-response pathways and preconditioning astrocytes to handle subsequent exposure to hydrogen peroxide. In fact, four of these compounds were found to activate the antioxidant response element/nuclear factor-E2-related factor 2 pathway, a protective pathway induced by toxic insults. Our results demonstrate the relevancy and utility of using astrocytes differentiated from human stem cells as a disease model for drug discovery and development. Astrocytes play a key role in neurological diseases. Drug discovery efforts that target astrocytes can identify novel therapeutics. Human astrocytes are difficult to obtain and thus are challenging to use for high-throughput screening, which requires large numbers of cells. Using human embryonic stem cell-derived astrocytes and an

  13. Disruption of astrocyte-neuron cholesterol cross talk affects neuronal function in Huntington's disease.

    PubMed

    Valenza, M; Marullo, M; Di Paolo, E; Cesana, E; Zuccato, C; Biella, G; Cattaneo, E

    2015-04-01

    In the adult brain, neurons require local cholesterol production, which is supplied by astrocytes through apoE-containing lipoproteins. In Huntington's disease (HD), such cholesterol biosynthesis in the brain is severely reduced. Here we show that this defect, occurring in astrocytes, is detrimental for HD neurons. Astrocytes bearing the huntingtin protein containing increasing CAG repeats secreted less apoE-lipoprotein-bound cholesterol in the medium. Conditioned media from HD astrocytes and lipoprotein-depleted conditioned media from wild-type (wt) astrocytes were equally detrimental in a neurite outgrowth assay and did not support synaptic activity in HD neurons, compared with conditions of cholesterol supplementation or conditioned media from wt astrocytes. Molecular perturbation of cholesterol biosynthesis and efflux in astrocytes caused similarly altered astrocyte-neuron cross talk, whereas enhancement of glial SREBP2 and ABCA1 function reversed the aspects of neuronal dysfunction in HD. These findings indicate that astrocyte-mediated cholesterol homeostasis could be a potential therapeutic target to ameliorate neuronal dysfunction in HD.

  14. Functional Consequences of Synapse Remodeling Following Astrocyte-Specific Regulation of Ephrin-B1 in the Adult Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Koeppen, Jordan; Nguyen, Amanda Q; Nikolakopoulou, Angeliki M; Garcia, Michael; Hanna, Sandy; Woodruff, Simone; Figueroa, Zoe; Obenaus, Andre; Ethell, Iryna M

    2018-06-20

    Astrocyte-derived factors can control synapse formation and functions, making astrocytes an attractive target for regulating neuronal circuits and associated behaviors. Abnormal astrocyte-neuronal interactions are also implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders and neurodegenerative diseases associated with impaired learning and memory. However, little is known about astrocyte-mediated mechanisms that regulate learning and memory. Here, we propose astrocytic ephrin-B1 as a regulator of synaptogenesis in adult hippocampus and mouse learning behaviors. We found that astrocyte-specific ablation of ephrin-B1 in male mice triggers an increase in the density of immature dendritic spines and excitatory synaptic sites in the adult CA1 hippocampus. However, the prevalence of immature dendritic spines is associated with decreased evoked postsynaptic firing responses in CA1 pyramidal neurons, suggesting impaired maturation of these newly formed and potentially silent synapses or increased excitatory drive on the inhibitory neurons resulting in the overall decreased postsynaptic firing. Nevertheless, astrocyte-specific ephrin-B1 knock-out male mice exhibit normal acquisition of fear memory but enhanced contextual fear memory recall. In contrast, overexpression of astrocytic ephrin-B1 in the adult CA1 hippocampus leads to the loss of dendritic spines, reduced excitatory input, and impaired contextual memory retention. Our results suggest that astrocytic ephrin-B1 may compete with neuronal ephrin-B1 and mediate excitatory synapse elimination through its interactions with neuronal EphB receptors. Indeed, a deletion of neuronal EphB receptors impairs the ability of astrocytes expressing functional ephrin-B1 to engulf synaptosomes in vitro Our findings demonstrate that astrocytic ephrin-B1 regulates long-term contextual memory by restricting new synapse formation in the adult hippocampus. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT These studies address a gap in our knowledge of astrocyte

  15. Drug monitoring: simultaneous analysis of lamotrigine, oxcarbazepine, 10-hydroxycarbazepine, and zonisamide by HPLC-UV and a rapid GC method using a nitrogen-phosphorus detector for levetiracetam

    PubMed Central

    Greiner-Sosanko, Elizabeth; Giannoutsos, Spiros; Lower, Darla R.; Virji, Mohamed A.; Krasowski, Matthew D.

    2008-01-01

    A high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) assay using ultraviolet detection is described for the simultaneous measurement of the newer generation anti-epileptic medications lamotrigine, oxcarbazepine (parent drug and active metabolite 10-hydroxycarbazepine), and zonisamide. Detection of all four compounds can be done at 230 nm; however, there is a potential interference with zonisamide in patients on clonazepam therapy. Therefore, the method uses dual wavelength detection: 230 nm for oxcarbazepine and 10-hydroxycarbazepine and 270 nm for lamotrigine and zonisamide. In addition, a simple gas chromatography method using a nitrogen-phosphorus detector is described for measurement of levetiracetam, another of the recently approved anti-epileptic medications. For both methods, limits of quantitation, linearities, accuracies, and imprecisions cover the therapeutic range for drug monitoring of patients. A wide variety of clinical drugs, including other anti-epileptic drugs, do not interfere with these assays. These procedures would be of special interest to clinical laboratories, particularly due to the limited availability of immunoassays for newer generation anti-epileptic medications and that therapeutic uses of these drugs are expanding beyond epilepsy to other neurologic and psychiatric disorders. PMID:17988451

  16. Epilepsy and astrocyte energy metabolism.

    PubMed

    Boison, Detlev; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2018-06-01

    Epilepsy is a complex neurological syndrome characterized by neuronal hyperexcitability and sudden, synchronized electrical discharges that can manifest as seizures. It is now increasingly recognized that impaired astrocyte function and energy homeostasis play key roles in the pathogenesis of epilepsy. Excessive neuronal discharges can only happen, if adequate energy sources are made available to neurons. Conversely, energy depletion during seizures is an endogenous mechanism of seizure termination. Astrocytes control neuronal energy homeostasis through neurometabolic coupling. In this review, we will discuss how astrocyte dysfunction in epilepsy leads to distortion of key metabolic and biochemical mechanisms. Dysfunctional glutamate metabolism in astrocytes can directly contribute to neuronal hyperexcitability. Closure of astrocyte intercellular gap junction coupling as observed early during epileptogenesis limits activity-dependent trafficking of energy metabolites, but also impairs clearance of the extracellular space from accumulation of K + and glutamate. Dysfunctional astrocytes also increase the metabolism of adenosine, a metabolic product of ATP degradation that broadly inhibits energy-consuming processes as an evolutionary adaptation to conserve energy. Due to the critical role of astroglial energy homeostasis in the control of neuronal excitability, metabolic therapeutic approaches that prevent the utilization of glucose might represent a potent antiepileptic strategy. In particular, high fat low carbohydrate "ketogenic diets" as well as inhibitors of glycolysis and lactate metabolism are of growing interest for the therapy of epilepsy. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Dual role of astrocytes in perinatal asphyxia injury and neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Romero, J; Muñiz, J; Logica Tornatore, T; Holubiec, M; González, J; Barreto, G E; Guelman, L; Lillig, C H; Blanco, E; Capani, F

    2014-04-17

    Perinatal asphyxia represents an important cause of severe neurological deficits including delayed mental and motor development, epilepsy, major cognitive deficits and blindness. However, at the moment, most of the therapeutic strategies were not well targeted toward the processes that induced the brain injury during perinatal asphyxia. Traditionally, experimental research focused on neurons, whereas astrocytes have been more related with the damage mechanisms of perinatal asphyxia. In this work, we propose to review possible protective as well as deleterious roles of astrocytes in the asphyctic brain with the aim to stimulate further research in this area of perinatal asphyxia still not well studied. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Astrocyte uncoupling as a cause of human temporal lobe epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Bedner, Peter; Dupper, Alexander; Hüttmann, Kerstin; Müller, Julia; Herde, Michel K.; Dublin, Pavel; Deshpande, Tushar; Schramm, Johannes; Häussler, Ute; Haas, Carola A.; Henneberger, Christian; Theis, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Glial cells are now recognized as active communication partners in the central nervous system, and this new perspective has rekindled the question of their role in pathology. In the present study we analysed functional properties of astrocytes in hippocampal specimens from patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy without (n = 44) and with sclerosis (n = 75) combining patch clamp recording, K+ concentration analysis, electroencephalography/video-monitoring, and fate mapping analysis. We found that the hippocampus of patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis is completely devoid of bona fide astrocytes and gap junction coupling, whereas coupled astrocytes were abundantly present in non-sclerotic specimens. To decide whether these glial changes represent cause or effect of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, we developed a mouse model that reproduced key features of human mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis. In this model, uncoupling impaired K+ buffering and temporally preceded apoptotic neuronal death and the generation of spontaneous seizures. Uncoupling was induced through intraperitoneal injection of lipopolysaccharide, prevented in Toll-like receptor4 knockout mice and reproduced in situ through acute cytokine or lipopolysaccharide incubation. Fate mapping confirmed that in the course of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, astrocytes acquire an atypical functional phenotype and lose coupling. These data suggest that astrocyte dysfunction might be a prime cause of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis and identify novel targets for anti-epileptogenic therapeutic intervention. PMID:25765328

  19. 3D Electrospun scaffolds promote a cytotrophic phenotype of cultured primary astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Lau, Chew L; Kovacevic, Michelle; Tingleff, Tine S; Forsythe, John S; Cate, Holly S; Merlo, Daniel; Cederfur, Cecilia; Maclean, Francesca L; Parish, Clare L; Horne, Malcolm K; Nisbet, David R; Beart, Philip M

    2014-07-01

    Astrocytes are a target for regenerative neurobiology because in brain injury their phenotype arbitrates brain integrity, neuronal death and subsequent repair and reconstruction. We explored the ability of 3D scaffolds to direct astrocytes into phenotypes with the potential to support neuronal survival. Poly-ε-caprolactone scaffolds were electrospun with random and aligned fibre orientations on which murine astrocytes were sub-cultured and analysed at 4 and 12 DIV. Astrocytes survived, proliferated and migrated into scaffolds adopting 3D morphologies, mimicking in vivo stellated phenotypes. Cells on random poly-ε-caprolactone scaffolds grew as circular colonies extending processes deep within sub-micron fibres, whereas astrocytes on aligned scaffolds exhibited rectangular colonies with processes following not only the direction of fibre alignment but also penetrating the scaffold. Cell viability was maintained over 12 DIV, and cytochemistry for F-/G-actin showed fewer stress fibres on bioscaffolds relative to 2D astrocytes. Reduced cytoskeletal stress was confirmed by the decreased expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein. PCR demonstrated up-regulation of genes (excitatory amino acid transporter 2, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and anti-oxidant) reflecting healthy biologies of mature astrocytes in our extended culture protocol. This study illustrates the therapeutic potential of bioengineering strategies using 3D electrospun scaffolds which direct astrocytes into phenotypes supporting brain repair. Astrocytes exist in phenotypes with pro-survival and destructive components, and their biology can be modulated by changing phenotype. Our findings demonstrate murine astrocytes adopt a healthy phenotype when cultured in 3D. Astrocytes proliferate and extend into poly-ε-caprolactone scaffolds displaying 3D stellated morphologies with reduced GFAP expression and actin stress fibres, plus a cytotrophic gene profile. Bioengineered 3D scaffolds have potential

  20. ASTROCYTE PATHOLOGY IN MAJOR DEPRESSIVE DISORDER: INSIGHTS FROM HUMAN POSTMORTEM BRAIN TISSUE

    PubMed Central

    Rajkowska, Grazyna; Stockmeier, Craig A.

    2013-01-01

    The present paper reviews astrocyte pathology in major depressive disorder (MDD) and proposes that reductions in astrocytes and related markers are key features in the pathology of MDD. Astrocytes are the most numerous and versatile of all types of glial cells. They are crucial to the neuronal microenvironment by regulating glucose metabolism, neurotransmitter uptake (particularly for glutamate), synaptic development and maturation and the blood brain barrier. Pathology of astrocytes has been consistently noted in MDD as well as in rodent models of depressive-like behavior. This review summarizes evidence from human postmortem tissue showing alterations in the expression of protein and mRNA for astrocyte markers such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), gap junction proteins (connexin 40 and 43), the water channel aquaporin-4 (AQP4), a calcium-binding protein S100B and glutamatergic markers including the excitatory amino acid transporters 1 and 2 (EAAT1, EAAT2) and glutamine synthetase. Moreover, preclinical studies are presented that demonstrate the involvement of GFAP and astrocytes in animal models of stress and depressive-like behavior and the influence of different classes of antidepressant medications on astrocytes. In light of the various astrocyte deficits noted in MDD, astrocytes may be novel targets for the action of antidepressant medications. Possible functional consequences of altered expression of astrocytic markers in MDD are also discussed. Finally, the unique pattern of cell pathology in MDD, characterized by prominent reductions in the density of astrocytes and in the expression of their markers without obvious neuronal loss, is contrasted with that found in other neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:23469922

  1. In vivo optical activation of astrocytes as a potential therapeutic strategy for neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yuanxin; Mancuso, James; Zhao, Zhen; Li, Xuping; Xue, Zhong; Wong, Stephen T. C.

    2013-03-01

    Neurovascular dysfunction in many neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), reduces blood flow to affected brain areas and causes neuronal dysfunction and loss. A new optical imaging technique is developed to activate astrocytes in live animal models in order to investigate the increase of local cerebral blood flow as a potential therapeutic strategy for AD. The technique uses fluorescent labeling of vasculature and astrocytes coupled with intravital 2-photon microscopy to visualize the astrocyte-vasculature interactions in live animals. Using femtosecond laser stimulation, calcium uncaging is applied to specifically target and activate astrocytes in vivo with high spatial and temporal resolutions. Intravital 2-photon microscopy imaging was employed to demonstrate that single endfoot optical activation around an arteriole induced a 25% increase in arteriole diameter, which in turn increased cerebral local blood flow in down-stream capillaries. This quantitative result indicates the potential of using optical activation of astrocytes in afflicted brain areas of neurodegeneration to restore normal neurovascular functions.

  2. Tlx acts as a proangiogenic switch by regulating extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices in retinal astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Uemura, Akiyoshi; Kusuhara, Sentaro; Wiegand, Stanley J; Yu, Ruth T; Nishikawa, Shin-ichi

    2006-02-01

    In response to hypoxia, hypoxia-inducible factors act as the primary proangiogenic triggers by regulating transcription levels of target genes, including VEGF. However, little is known about the specific factors that control other components of the angiogenic process, particularly formation of matrix scaffolds that promote adhesion and migration of endothelial cells. We show that in the postnatal mouse retina, the orphan nuclear receptor tailless (Tlx) is strongly expressed in the proangiogenic astrocytes, which secrete VEGF and fibronectin. Tlx expression by retinal astrocytes is controlled by oxygen concentration and rapidly downregulated upon contact with blood vessels. In mice null for Tlx, retinal astrocytes maintain VEGF expression; however, the extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices by astrocytes is severely impaired, leading to defective scaffold formation and a complete failure of normal retinal vascular development. This work identifies Tlx as an essential component of the molecular network involved in the hypoxia-inducible proangiogenic switch in retinal astrocytes.

  3. Tlx acts as a proangiogenic switch by regulating extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices in retinal astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Uemura, Akiyoshi; Kusuhara, Sentaro; Wiegand, Stanley J.; Yu, Ruth T.; Nishikawa, Shin-Ichi

    2006-01-01

    In response to hypoxia, hypoxia-inducible factors act as the primary proangiogenic triggers by regulating transcription levels of target genes, including VEGF. However, little is known about the specific factors that control other components of the angiogenic process, particularly formation of matrix scaffolds that promote adhesion and migration of endothelial cells. We show that in the postnatal mouse retina, the orphan nuclear receptor tailless (Tlx) is strongly expressed in the proangiogenic astrocytes, which secrete VEGF and fibronectin. Tlx expression by retinal astrocytes is controlled by oxygen concentration and rapidly downregulated upon contact with blood vessels. In mice null for Tlx, retinal astrocytes maintain VEGF expression; however, the extracellular assembly of fibronectin matrices by astrocytes is severely impaired, leading to defective scaffold formation and a complete failure of normal retinal vascular development. This work identifies Tlx as an essential component of the molecular network involved in the hypoxia-inducible proangiogenic switch in retinal astrocytes. PMID:16424942

  4. Ginsenoside compound K promotes β-amyloid peptide clearance in primary astrocytes via autophagy enhancement.

    PubMed

    Guo, Jinhui; Chang, Li; Zhang, Xin; Pei, Sujuan; Yu, Meishuang; Gao, Jianlian

    2014-10-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of ginsenoside compound K on β-amyloid (Aβ) peptide clearance in primary astrocytes. Aβ degradation in primary astrocytes was determined using an intracellular Aβ clearance assay. Aggregated LC3 in astrocyte cells, which is a marker for the level of autophagy, was detected using laser scanning confocal microscope. The effect of compound K on the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)/autophagy pathway was determined using western blot analysis, and an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used for Aβ detection. The results demonstrated that compound K promoted the clearance of Aβ and enhanced autophagy in primary astrocytes. In addition, it was found that phosphorylation of mTOR was inhibited by compound K, which may have contributed to the enhanced autophagy. In conclusion, compound K promotes Aβ clearance by enhancing autophagy via the mTOR signaling pathway in primary astrocytes.

  5. Astrocyte Transforming Growth Factor Beta 1 Protects Synapses against Aβ Oligomers in Alzheimer's Disease Model.

    PubMed

    Diniz, Luan Pereira; Tortelli, Vanessa; Matias, Isadora; Morgado, Juliana; Bérgamo Araujo, Ana Paula; Melo, Helen M; Seixas da Silva, Gisele S; Alves-Leon, Soniza V; de Souza, Jorge M; Ferreira, Sergio T; De Felice, Fernanda G; Gomes, Flávia Carvalho Alcantara

    2017-07-12

    Os, via production of transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1). We found that AβOs trigger morphological and functional alterations in astrocytes, and impair their neuroprotective potential. Notably, TGF-β1 reduced hippocampal dendritic spine loss and memory impairment in mice that received intracerebroventricular infusions of AβOs. Our results describe a new mechanism underlying the toxicity of AβOs and indicate novel therapeutic targets for Alzheimer's disease, mainly focused on TGF-β1 and astrocytes. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/376798-13$15.00/0.

  6. Wildtype motoneurons, ALS-Linked SOD1 mutation and glutamate profoundly modify astrocyte metabolism and lactate shuttling.

    PubMed

    Madji Hounoum, Blandine; Mavel, Sylvie; Coque, Emmanuelle; Patin, Franck; Vourc'h, Patrick; Marouillat, Sylviane; Nadal-Desbarats, Lydie; Emond, Patrick; Corcia, Philippe; Andres, Christian R; Raoul, Cédric; Blasco, Hélène

    2017-04-01

    The selective degeneration of motoneuron that typifies amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) implicates non-cell-autonomous effects of astrocytes. However, mechanisms underlying astrocyte-mediated neurotoxicity remain largely unknown. According to the determinant role of astrocyte metabolism in supporting neuronal function, we propose to explore the metabolic status of astrocytes exposed to ALS-associated conditions. We found a significant metabolic dysregulation including purine, pyrimidine, lysine, and glycerophospholipid metabolism pathways in astrocytes expressing an ALS-causing mutated superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1) when co-cultured with motoneurons. SOD1 astrocytes exposed to glutamate revealed a significant modification of the astrocyte metabolic fingerprint. More importantly, we observed that SOD1 mutation and glutamate impact the cellular shuttling of lactate between astrocytes and motoneurons with a decreased in extra- and intra-cellular lactate levels in astrocytes. Based on the emergent strategy of metabolomics, this work provides novel insight for understanding metabolic dysfunction of astrocytes in ALS conditions and opens the perspective of therapeutics targets through focusing on these metabolic pathways. GLIA 2017 GLIA 2017;65:592-605. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Astrocyte lipid metabolism is critical for synapse development and function in vivo.

    PubMed

    van Deijk, Anne-Lieke F; Camargo, Nutabi; Timmerman, Jaap; Heistek, Tim; Brouwers, Jos F; Mogavero, Floriana; Mansvelder, Huibert D; Smit, August B; Verheijen, Mark H G

    2017-04-01

    The brain is considered to be autonomous in lipid synthesis with astrocytes producing lipids far more efficiently than neurons. Accordingly, it is generally assumed that astrocyte-derived lipids are taken up by neurons to support synapse formation and function. Initial confirmation of this assumption has been obtained in cell cultures, but whether astrocyte-derived lipids support synapses in vivo is not known. Here, we address this issue and determined the role of astrocyte lipid metabolism in hippocampal synapse formation and function in vivo. Hippocampal protein expression for the sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) and its target gene fatty acid synthase (Fasn) was found in astrocytes but not in neurons. Diminishing SREBP activity in astrocytes using mice in which the SREBP cleavage-activating protein (SCAP) was deleted from GFAP-expressing cells resulted in decreased cholesterol and phospholipid secretion by astrocytes. Interestingly, SCAP mutant mice showed more immature synapses, lower presynaptic protein SNAP-25 levels as well as reduced numbers of synaptic vesicles, indicating impaired development of the presynaptic terminal. Accordingly, hippocampal short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity were defective in mutant mice. These findings establish a critical role for astrocyte lipid metabolism in presynaptic terminal development and function in vivo. GLIA 2017;65:670-682. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Imbalance between Glutamate and GABA in Fmr1 Knockout Astrocytes Influences Neuronal Development

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lu; Wang, Yan; Zhou, Shimeng; Yang, Liukun; Shi, Qixin; Li, Yujiao; Zhang, Kun; Yang, Le; Zhao, Minggao; Yang, Qi

    2016-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is a form of inherited mental retardation that results from the absence of the fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP), the product of the Fmr1 gene. Numerous studies have shown that FMRP expression in astrocytes is important in the development of FXS. Although astrocytes affect neuronal dendrite development in Fmr1 knockout (KO) mice, the factors released by astrocytes are still unclear. We cultured wild type (WT) cortical neurons in astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) from WT or Fmr1 KO mice. Immunocytochemistry and Western blotting were performed to detect the dendritic growth of both WT and KO neurons. We determined glutamate and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) levels using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The total neuronal dendritic length was reduced when cultured in the Fmr1 KO ACM. This neurotoxicity was triggered by an imbalanced release of glutamate and GABA from Fmr1 KO astrocytes. We found increased glutaminase and GABA transaminase (GABA-T) expression and decreased monoamine oxidase B expression in Fmr1 KO astrocytes. The elevated levels of glutamate contributed to oxidative stress in the cultured neurons. Vigabatrin (VGB), a GABA-T inhibitor, reversed the changes caused by glutamate and GABA release in Fmr1 KO astrocytes and the abnormal behaviors in Fmr1 KO mice. Our results indicate that the imbalance in the astrocytic glutamate and GABA release may be involved in the neuropathology and the underlying symptoms of FXS, and provides a therapeutic target for treatment. PMID:27517961

  9. Zonisamide-loaded triblock copolymer nanomicelles as a novel drug delivery system for the treatment of acute spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, JingLun; Deng, JiaoJiao; Yuan, JinXian; Fu, Jie; Li, XiaoLing; Tong, AiPing; Wang, YueLong; Chen, YangMei; Guo, Gang

    2017-01-01

    Spinal cord injury (SCI) commonly leads to lifelong disability due to the limited regenerative capacity of the adult central nervous system. Nanomicelles can be used as therapeutic systems to provide effective treatments for SCI. In this study, a novel triblock monomethyl poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(l-lactide)-poly(trimethylene carbonate) copolymer was successfully synthesized. Next, polymeric nanomicelles loaded with zonisamide (ZNS), a Food and Drug Administration-approved antiepileptic drug, were prepared and characterized. The ZNS-loaded micelles (ZNS-M) were further utilized for the treatment of SCI in vitro and in vivo. The obtained ZNS-M were ~50 nm in diameter with good solubility and dispersibility. Additionally, these controlled-release micelles showed significant antioxidative and neuron-protective effects in vitro. Finally, our results indicated that ZNS-M treatment could promote motor function recovery and could increase neuron and axon density in a hemisection SCI model. In summary, these results may provide an experimental basis for the use of ZNS-M as a clinically applicable therapeutic drug for the treatment of SCI in the future. PMID:28408816

  10. Astrocytic GABA transporter activity modulates excitatory neurotransmission

    PubMed Central

    Boddum, Kim; Jensen, Thomas P.; Magloire, Vincent; Kristiansen, Uffe; Rusakov, Dmitri A.; Pavlov, Ivan; Walker, Matthew C.

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes are ideally placed to detect and respond to network activity. They express ionotropic and metabotropic receptors, and can release gliotransmitters. Astrocytes also express transporters that regulate the extracellular concentration of neurotransmitters. Here we report a previously unrecognized role for the astrocytic GABA transporter, GAT-3. GAT-3 activity results in a rise in astrocytic Na+ concentrations and a consequent increase in astrocytic Ca2+ through Na+/Ca2+ exchange. This leads to the release of ATP/adenosine by astrocytes, which then diffusely inhibits neuronal glutamate release via activation of presynaptic adenosine receptors. Through this mechanism, increases in astrocytic GAT-3 activity due to GABA released from interneurons contribute to 'diffuse' heterosynaptic depression. This provides a mechanism for homeostatic regulation of excitatory transmission in the hippocampus. PMID:27886179

  11. Interactions of Monoamine Oxidases with the Antiepileptic Drug Zonisamide: Specificity of Inhibition and Structure of the Human Monoamine oxidase B Complex

    PubMed Central

    Binda, Claudia; Aldeco, Milagros; Mattevi, Andrea; Edmondson, Dale E.

    2010-01-01

    The binding of zonisamide to purified, recombinant monoamine oxidases (MAOs) has been investigated. It is a competitive inhibitor of human MAO B (Ki = 3.1 ± 0.3 μM), of rat MAO B (Ki = 2.9 ± 0.5 μM), and of zebrafish MAO (Ki = 30.8 ± 5.3 μM). No inhibition is observed with purified human or rat MAO A. The 1.8 Å structure of the MAO B complex demonstrates that it binds within the substrate cavity. PMID:21175212

  12. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Nan; Yao, Fang; Li, Ke; Zhang, Lanlan; Yin, Guo; Du, Mingjun; Wu, Bingyi

    2017-01-01

    Fisetin (3,3′,4′,7-tetrahydroxyflavone) is a plant flavonol found in fruits and vegetables that has been reported to inhibit migration and proliferation in several types of cancer. Reactive astrogliosis involves astrocyte migration and proliferation, and contributes to the formation of glial scars in central nervous system (CNS) disorders. However, the effect of fisetin on the migration and proliferation of astrocytes remains unclear. In this study, we found that fisetin inhibited astrocyte migration in a scratch-wound assay and diminished the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK; Tyr576/577 and paxillin (Tyr118). It also suppressed cell proliferation, as indicated by the decreased number of 5-ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine (EdU)-positive cells, induced cell cycle arrest in the G1 phase, reduced the percentage of cells in the G2 and S phase (as measured by flow cytometry), and decreased cyclin D1 expression, but had no effect on apoptosis. Fisetin also decreased the phosphorylation levels of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk)1/2, but had no effect on the phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). These results indicate that fisetin inhibits aggressive cell phenotypes by suppressing cell migration and proliferation via the Akt/Erk signaling pathway. Fisetin may thus have potential for use as a therapeutic strategy targeting reactive astrocytes, which may lead to the inhibition of glial scar formation in vitro. PMID:28204814

  13. Neuropharmacological effects of Phoneutria nigriventer venom on astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Rapôso, Catarina; Björklund, Ulrika; Kalapothakis, Evanguedes; Biber, Björn; Alice da Cruz-Höfling, Maria; Hansson, Elisabeth

    2016-06-01

    Bites from genus Phoneutria (Ctenidae, Araneomorpha) are the second most frequent source of spider accidents in Southeast Brazil. Severe envenoming from Phoneutria nigriventer produces vision disturbance, tremor and convulsion, suggesting that the CNS is involved; however, the mechanisms by which P. nigriventer venom (PNV) affects the CNS remain poorly understood. The present study aimed to investigate whether PNV directly impairs astrocytes. Cultured astrocytes were exposed to PNV, and intracellular Ca(2+) release and signaling were measured (Fura-2/AM), Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase and Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) involvement were investigated, actin filaments were stained (Alexa™ 488-conjugated phalloidin probe), the G-actin/F-actin ratio was determined, and the expression level of connexin 43 (Cx43) was assessed. Incubation in Ca(2+)-free buffer did not change the Ca(2+) responses. However, pre-incubation in thapsigargin/caffeine completely abolished these responses, suggesting that PNV-evoked Ca(2+) transients were from intracellular Ca(2+) stores. Pretreatment with a Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase antagonist (ouabain) or a TLR4 antagonist (LPS-RS) decreased or increased the Ca(2+)-evoked transients, respectively. Astrocytes showed altered actin filament structure after PNV exposure. PNV treatment increased the expression levels of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase and Cx43 but decreased those of TLR4. The present results suggest that PNV directly affects astrocytes. Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase may thus represent a more specific drug target for controlling the neurotoxicity of PNV. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Neuromyelitis optica IgG stimulates an immunological response in rat astrocyte cultures.

    PubMed

    Howe, Charles L; Kaptzan, Tatiana; Magaña, Setty M; Ayers-Ringler, Jennifer R; LaFrance-Corey, Reghann G; Lucchinetti, Claudia F

    2014-05-01

    Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is a primary astrocyte disease associated with central nervous system inflammation, demyelination, and tissue injury. Brain lesions are frequently observed in regions enriched in expression of the aquaporin-4 (AQP4) water channel, an antigenic target of the NMO IgG serologic marker. Based on observations of disease reversibility and careful characterization of NMO lesion development, we propose that the NMO IgG may induce a dynamic immunological response in astrocytes. Using primary rat astrocyte-enriched cultures and treatment with NMO patient-derived serum or purified IgG, we observed a robust pattern of gene expression changes consistent with the induction of a reactive and inflammatory phenotype in astrocytes. The reactive astrocyte factor lipocalin-2 and a broad spectrum of chemokines, cytokines, and stress response factors were induced by either NMO patient serum or purified IgG. Treatment with IgG from healthy controls had no effect. The effect is disease-specific, as serum from patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, Sjögren's, or systemic lupus erythematosus did not induce a response in the cultures. We hypothesize that binding of the NMO IgG to AQP4 induces a cellular response that results in transcriptional and translational events within the astrocyte that are consistent with a reactive and inflammatory phenotype. Strategies aimed at reducing the inflammatory response of astrocytes may short circuit an amplification loop associated with NMO lesion development. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Astrocyte dysfunction in temporal lobe epilepsy: K+ channels and gap junction coupling.

    PubMed

    Steinhäuser, Christian; Seifert, Gerald; Bedner, Peter

    2012-08-01

    Astrocytes are endowed with the machinery to sense and respond to neuronal activity. Recent work has demonstrated that astrocytes play important physiological roles in the CNS, e.g., they synchronize action potential firing, ensure ion homeostasis, transmitter clearance and glucose metabolism, and regulate the vascular tone. Astrocytes are abundantly coupled through gap junctions, which is a prerequisite to redistribute elevated K(+) from sites of excessive neuronal activity to sites of lower extracellular K(+) concentration. Recent studies identified dysfunctional astrocytes as crucial players in epilepsy. Investigation of specimens from patients with pharmacoresistant temporal lobe epilepsy and epilepsy models revealed alterations in expression, localization, and function of astroglial inwardly rectifying K(+) (Kir) channels, particularly Kir4.1, which is suspected to entail impaired K(+) buffering. Gap junctions in astrocytes appear to play a dual role: on the one hand they counteract the generation of hyperactivity by facilitating clearance of elevated extracellular K(+) levels while in contrast, they constitute a pathway for energetic substrate delivery to fuel neuronal (hyper)activity. Recent work suggests that astrocyte dysfunction is causative of the generation or spread of seizure activity. Thus, astrocytes should be considered as promising targets for alternative antiepileptic therapies. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. The Role of Astrocyte Mitochondria in Differential Regional Susceptibility to Environmental Neurotoxicants: Tools for Understanding Neurodegeneration

    PubMed Central

    Kubik, Laura L.; Philbert, Martin A.

    2015-01-01

    In recent decades, there has been a significant expansion in our understanding of the role of astrocytes in neuroprotection, including spatial buffering of extracellular ions, secretion of metabolic coenzymes, and synaptic regulation. Astrocytic neuroprotective functions require energy, and therefore require a network of functional mitochondria. Disturbances to astrocytic mitochondrial homeostasis and their ability to produce ATP can negatively impact neural function. Perturbations in astrocyte mitochondrial function may accrue as the result of physiological aging processes or as a consequence of neurotoxicant exposure. Hydrophobic environmental neurotoxicants, such as 1,3-dinitrobenzene and α-chlorohydrin, cause regionally specific spongiform lesions mimicking energy deprivation syndromes. Astrocyte involvement includes mitochondrial damage that either precedes or is accompanied by neuronal damage. Similarly, environmental neurotoxicants that are implicated in the etiology of age-related neurodegenerative conditions cause regionally specific damage in the brain. Based on the regioselective nature of age-related neurodegenerative lesions, chemically induced models of regioselective lesions targeting astrocyte mitochondria can provide insight into age-related susceptibilities in astrocyte mitochondria. Most of the available research to date focuses on neuronal damage in cases of age-related neurodegeneration; however, there is a body of evidence that supports a central mechanistic role for astrocyte mitochondria in the expression of neural injury. Regional susceptibility to neuronal damage induced by aging by exposure to neurotoxicants may be a reflection of highly variable regional energy requirements. This review identifies region-specific vulnerabilities in astrocyte mitochondria in examples of exposure to neurotoxicants and in age-related neurodegeneration. PMID:25740792

  17. Cell-type-specific and differentiation-status-dependent variations in cytotoxicity of tributyltin in cultured rat cerebral neurons and astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Oyanagi, Koshi; Tashiro, Tomoko; Negishi, Takayuki

    2015-08-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) is an organotin used as an anti-fouling agent for fishing nets and ships and it is a widespread environmental contaminant at present. There is an increasing concern about imperceptible but serious adverse effect(s) of exposure to chemicals existing in the environment on various organs and their physiological functions, e.g. brain and mental function. Here, so as to contribute to improvement of and/or advances in in vitro cell-based assay systems for evaluating brain-targeted adverse effect of chemicals, we tried to evaluate cell-type-specific and differentiation-status-dependent variations in the cytotoxicity of TBT towards neurons and astrocytes using the four culture systems differing in the relative abundance of these two types of cells; primary neuron culture (> 95% neurons), primary neuron-astrocyte (2 : 1) mix culture, primary astrocyte culture (> 95% astrocytes), and passaged astrocyte culture (100% proliferative astrocytes). Cell viability was measured at 48 hr after exposure to TBT in serum-free medium. IC50's of TBT were 198 nM in primary neuron culture, 288 nM in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture, 2001 nM in primary astrocyte culture, and 1989 nM in passaged astrocyte culture. Furthermore, in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture, vulnerability of neurons cultured along with astrocytes to TBT toxicity was lower than that of neurons cultured purely in primary neuron culture. On the other hand, astrocytes in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture were considered to be more vulnerable to TBT than those in primary or passaged astrocyte culture. The present study demonstrated variable cytotoxicity of TBT in neural cells depending on the culture condition.

  18. Astrocytes in the tempest of multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Miljković, Djordje; Timotijević, Gordana; Mostarica Stojković, Marija

    2011-12-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell population within the CNS of mammals. Their glial role is perfectly performed in the healthy CNS as they support functions of neurons. The omnipresence of astrocytes throughout the white and grey matter and their intimate relation with blood vessels of the CNS, as well as numerous immunity-related actions that these cells are capable of, imply that astrocytes should have a prominent role in neuroinflammatory disorders, such as multiple sclerosis (MS). The role of astrocytes in MS is rather ambiguous, as they have the capacity to both stimulate and restrain neuroinflammation and tissue destruction. In this paper we present some of the proved and the proposed functions of astrocytes in neuroinflammation and discuss the effect of MS therapeutics on astrocytes. Copyright © 2011 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Astrocyte uncoupling as a cause of human temporal lobe epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Bedner, Peter; Dupper, Alexander; Hüttmann, Kerstin; Müller, Julia; Herde, Michel K; Dublin, Pavel; Deshpande, Tushar; Schramm, Johannes; Häussler, Ute; Haas, Carola A; Henneberger, Christian; Theis, Martin; Steinhäuser, Christian

    2015-05-01

    Glial cells are now recognized as active communication partners in the central nervous system, and this new perspective has rekindled the question of their role in pathology. In the present study we analysed functional properties of astrocytes in hippocampal specimens from patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy without (n = 44) and with sclerosis (n = 75) combining patch clamp recording, K(+) concentration analysis, electroencephalography/video-monitoring, and fate mapping analysis. We found that the hippocampus of patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis is completely devoid of bona fide astrocytes and gap junction coupling, whereas coupled astrocytes were abundantly present in non-sclerotic specimens. To decide whether these glial changes represent cause or effect of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, we developed a mouse model that reproduced key features of human mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis. In this model, uncoupling impaired K(+) buffering and temporally preceded apoptotic neuronal death and the generation of spontaneous seizures. Uncoupling was induced through intraperitoneal injection of lipopolysaccharide, prevented in Toll-like receptor4 knockout mice and reproduced in situ through acute cytokine or lipopolysaccharide incubation. Fate mapping confirmed that in the course of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis, astrocytes acquire an atypical functional phenotype and lose coupling. These data suggest that astrocyte dysfunction might be a prime cause of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy with sclerosis and identify novel targets for anti-epileptogenic therapeutic intervention. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Trafficking of astrocytic vesicles in hippocampal slices

    SciTech Connect

    Potokar, Maja; Kreft, Marko; Celica Biomedical Center, Technology Park 24, 1000 Ljubljana

    2009-12-25

    The increasingly appreciated role of astrocytes in neurophysiology dictates a thorough understanding of the mechanisms underlying the communication between astrocytes and neurons. In particular, the uptake and release of signaling substances into/from astrocytes is considered as crucial. The release of different gliotransmitters involves regulated exocytosis, consisting of the fusion between the vesicle and the plasma membranes. After fusion with the plasma membrane vesicles may be retrieved into the cytoplasm and may continue to recycle. To study the mobility implicated in the retrieval of secretory vesicles, these structures have been previously efficiently and specifically labeled in cultured astrocytes, by exposing livemore » cells to primary and secondary antibodies. Since the vesicle labeling and the vesicle mobility properties may be an artifact of cell culture conditions, we here asked whether the retrieving exocytotic vesicles can be labeled in brain tissue slices and whether their mobility differs to that observed in cell cultures. We labeled astrocytic vesicles and recorded their mobility with two-photon microscopy in hippocampal slices from transgenic mice with fluorescently tagged astrocytes (GFP mice) and in wild-type mice with astrocytes labeled by Fluo4 fluorescence indicator. Glutamatergic vesicles and peptidergic granules were labeled by the anti-vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (vGlut1) and anti-atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) antibodies, respectively. We report that the vesicle mobility parameters (velocity, maximal displacement and track length) recorded in astrocytes from tissue slices are similar to those reported previously in cultured astrocytes.« less

  1. Differential Pro-Inflammatory Responses of Astrocytes and Microglia Involve STAT3 Activation in Response to 1800 MHz Radiofrequency Fields

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yonghui; He, Mindi; Zhang, Yang; Xu, Shangcheng; Zhang, Lei; He, Yue; Chen, Chunhai; Liu, Chuan; Pi, Huifeng; Yu, Zhengping; Zhou, Zhou

    2014-01-01

    Microglia and astrocytes play important role in maintaining the homeostasis of central nervous system (CNS). Several CNS impacts have been postulated to be associated with radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields exposure. Given the important role of inflammation in neural physiopathologic processes, we investigated the pro-inflammatory responses of microglia and astrocytes and the involved mechanism in response to RF fields. Microglial N9 and astroglial C8-D1A cells were exposed to 1800 MHz RF for different time with or without pretreatment with STAT3 inhibitor. Microglia and astrocytes were activated by RF exposure indicated by up-regulated CD11b and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). However, RF exposure induced differential pro-inflammatory responses in astrocytes and microglia, characterized by different expression and release profiles of IL-1β, TNF-α, IL-6, PGE2, nitric oxide (NO), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2). Moreover, the RF exposure activated STAT3 in microglia but not in astrocytes. Furthermore, the STAT3 inhibitor Stattic ameliorated the RF-induced release of pro-inflammatory cytokines in microglia but not in astrocytes. Our results demonstrated that RF exposure differentially induced pro-inflammatory responses in microglia and astrocytes, which involved differential activation of STAT3 in microglia and astrocytes. Our data provide novel insights into the potential mechanisms of the reported CNS impacts associated with mobile phone use and present STAT3 as a promising target to protect humans against increasing RF exposure. PMID:25275372

  2. Differential pro-inflammatory responses of astrocytes and microglia involve STAT3 activation in response to 1800 MHz radiofrequency fields.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yonghui; He, Mindi; Zhang, Yang; Xu, Shangcheng; Zhang, Lei; He, Yue; Chen, Chunhai; Liu, Chuan; Pi, Huifeng; Yu, Zhengping; Zhou, Zhou

    2014-01-01

    Microglia and astrocytes play important role in maintaining the homeostasis of central nervous system (CNS). Several CNS impacts have been postulated to be associated with radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields exposure. Given the important role of inflammation in neural physiopathologic processes, we investigated the pro-inflammatory responses of microglia and astrocytes and the involved mechanism in response to RF fields. Microglial N9 and astroglial C8-D1A cells were exposed to 1800 MHz RF for different time with or without pretreatment with STAT3 inhibitor. Microglia and astrocytes were activated by RF exposure indicated by up-regulated CD11b and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). However, RF exposure induced differential pro-inflammatory responses in astrocytes and microglia, characterized by different expression and release profiles of IL-1β, TNF-α, IL-6, PGE2, nitric oxide (NO), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2). Moreover, the RF exposure activated STAT3 in microglia but not in astrocytes. Furthermore, the STAT3 inhibitor Stattic ameliorated the RF-induced release of pro-inflammatory cytokines in microglia but not in astrocytes. Our results demonstrated that RF exposure differentially induced pro-inflammatory responses in microglia and astrocytes, which involved differential activation of STAT3 in microglia and astrocytes. Our data provide novel insights into the potential mechanisms of the reported CNS impacts associated with mobile phone use and present STAT3 as a promising target to protect humans against increasing RF exposure.

  3. From in silico astrocyte cell models to neuron-astrocyte network models: A review.

    PubMed

    Oschmann, Franziska; Berry, Hugues; Obermayer, Klaus; Lenk, Kerstin

    2018-01-01

    The idea that astrocytes may be active partners in synaptic information processing has recently emerged from abundant experimental reports. Because of their spatial proximity to neurons and their bidirectional communication with them, astrocytes are now considered as an important third element of the synapse. Astrocytes integrate and process synaptic information and by doing so generate cytosolic calcium signals that are believed to reflect neuronal transmitter release. Moreover, they regulate neuronal information transmission by releasing gliotransmitters into the synaptic cleft affecting both pre- and postsynaptic receptors. Concurrent with the first experimental reports of the astrocytic impact on neural network dynamics, computational models describing astrocytic functions have been developed. In this review, we give an overview over the published computational models of astrocytic functions, from single-cell dynamics to the tripartite synapse level and network models of astrocytes and neurons. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Biomechanical and proteomic analysis of INF- β-treated astrocytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vergara, Daniele; Martignago, Roberta; Leporatti, Stefano; Bonsegna, Stefania; Maruccio, Giuseppe; De Nuccio, Franco; Santino, Angelo; Cingolani, Roberto; Nicolardi, Giuseppe; Maffia, Michele; Rinaldi, Ross

    2009-11-01

    Astrocytes have a key role in the pathogenesis of several diseases including multiple sclerosis and were proposed as the designed target for immunotherapy. In this study we used atomic force microscopy (AFM) and proteomics methods to analyse and correlate the modifications induced in the viscoleastic properties of astrocytes to the changes induced in protein expression after interferon- β (IFN-β) treatment. Our results indicated that IFN-β treatment resulted in a significant decrease in the Young's modulus, a measure of cell elasticity, in comparison with control cells. The molecular mechanisms that trigger these changes were investigated by 2DE (two-dimensional electrophoresis) and confocal analyses and confirmed by western blotting. Altered proteins were found to be involved in cytoskeleton organization and other important physiological processes.

  5. Astrocytes and Developmental White Matter Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sen, Ellora; Levison, Steven W.

    2006-01-01

    There is an increasing awareness that the astrocytes in the immature periventricular white matter are vulnerable to ischemia and respond to inflammation. Here we provide a synopsis of the articles that have evaluated the causes and consequences of developmental brain injuries to white matter astrocytes as well as the consequences of several…

  6. αB-crystallin negative astrocytic inclusions.

    PubMed

    Barnett, Brad P; Bressler, Joseph; Chen, Terina; Hutchins, Grover M; Crain, Barbara J; Kaufmann, Walter E

    2011-04-01

    We report on an unusual pathological finding of astrocytes, observed in the brain of a 16-year-old African-American male with severe intellectual disability and spastic quadriplegia. The brain showed bilateral pericentral, perisylvian polymicrogyria and pachygyria, in conjunction with a large number of hypertrophic astrocytes with eosinophilic granular cytoplasmic inclusions. The astrocytic abnormality was more severe in the dysgenetic area but present throughout the cerebral cortex. Astrocytic inclusions stained with acid fuchsin, azocarmine and Holzer's stain, and were immunoreactive for GFAP, S-100, and ubiquitin, but not for αB-crystallin, filamin, vimentin, nestin, tau or α-synuclein. Based on the case and a review of the literature, the authors postulate that these astrocytic inclusions in the cerebral cortex reflect abnormalities in radial glial developmental processes, such as migration, differentiation, or glial-neuronal interaction function during neuronal migration. Copyright © 2010 The Japanese Society of Child Neurology. All rights reserved.

  7. Deletion of Monoglyceride Lipase in Astrocytes Attenuates Lipopolysaccharide-induced Neuroinflammation*

    PubMed Central

    Grabner, Gernot F.; Eichmann, Thomas O.; Wagner, Bernhard; Gao, Yuanqing; Farzi, Aitak; Taschler, Ulrike; Radner, Franz P. W.; Schweiger, Martina; Lass, Achim; Holzer, Peter; Zinser, Erwin; Tschöp, Matthias H.; Yi, Chun-Xia; Zimmermann, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Monoglyceride lipase (MGL) is required for efficient hydrolysis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglyerol (2-AG) in the brain generating arachidonic acid (AA) and glycerol. This metabolic function makes MGL an interesting target for the treatment of neuroinflammation, since 2-AG exhibits anti-inflammatory properties and AA is a precursor for pro-inflammatory prostaglandins. Astrocytes are an important source of AA and 2-AG, and highly express MGL. In the present study, we dissected the distinct contribution of MGL in astrocytes on brain 2-AG and AA metabolism by generating a mouse model with genetic deletion of MGL specifically in astrocytes (MKOGFAP). MKOGFAP mice exhibit moderately increased 2-AG and reduced AA levels in brain. Minor accumulation of 2-AG in the brain of MKOGFAP mice does not cause cannabinoid receptor desensitization as previously observed in mice globally lacking MGL. Importantly, MKOGFAP mice exhibit reduced brain prostaglandin E2 and pro-inflammatory cytokine levels upon peripheral lipopolysaccharide (LPS) administration. These observations indicate that MGL-mediated degradation of 2-AG in astrocytes provides AA for prostaglandin synthesis promoting LPS-induced neuroinflammation. The beneficial effect of astrocyte-specific MGL-deficiency is not fully abrogated by the inverse cannabinoid receptor 1 agonist SR141716 (Rimonabant) suggesting that the anti-inflammatory effects are rather caused by reduced prostaglandin synthesis than by activation of cannabinoid receptors. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that MGL in astrocytes is an important regulator of 2-AG levels, AA availability, and neuroinflammation. PMID:26565024

  8. Glucose and Intermediary Metabolism and Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions Following Neonatal Hypoxia-Ischemia in Rat.

    PubMed

    Brekke, Eva; Berger, Hester Rijkje; Widerøe, Marius; Sonnewald, Ursula; Morken, Tora Sund

    2017-01-01

    Neonatal hypoxia-ischemia (HI) and the delayed injury cascade that follows involve excitotoxicity, oxidative stress and mitochondrial failure. The susceptibility to excitotoxicity of the neonatal brain may be related to the capacity of astrocytes for glutamate uptake. Furthermore, the neonatal brain is vulnerable to oxidative stress, and the pentose phosphate pathway (PPP) may be of particular importance for limiting this kind of injury. Also, in the neonatal brain, neurons depend upon de novo synthesis of neurotransmitters via pyruvate carboxylase in astrocytes to increase neurotransmitter pools during normal brain development. Several recent publications describing intermediary brain metabolism following neonatal HI have yielded interesting results: (1) Following HI there is a prolonged depression of mitochondrial metabolism in agreement with emerging evidence of mitochondria as vulnerable targets in the delayed injury cascade. (2) Astrocytes, like neurons, are metabolically impaired following HI, and the degree of astrocytic malfunction may be an indicator of the outcome following hypoxic and hypoxic-ischemic brain injury. (3) Glutamate transfer from neurons to astrocytes is not increased following neonatal HI, which may imply that astrocytes fail to upregulate glutamate uptake in response to the massive glutamate release during HI, thus contributing to excitotoxicity. (4) In the neonatal brain, the activity of the PPP is reduced following HI, which may add to the susceptibility of the neonatal brain to oxidative stress. The present review aims to discuss the metabolic temporal alterations observed in the neonatal brain following HI.

  9. An Excitatory Loop with Astrocytes Contributes to Drive Neurons to Seizure Threshold

    PubMed Central

    Chiavegato, Angela; Zonta, Micaela; Cammarota, Mario; Brondi, Marco; Vetri, Francesco; Uva, Laura; Pozzan, Tullio; de Curtis, Marco; Ratto, Gian Michele; Carmignoto, Giorgio

    2010-01-01

    Seizures in focal epilepsies are sustained by a highly synchronous neuronal discharge that arises at restricted brain sites and subsequently spreads to large portions of the brain. Despite intense experimental research in this field, the earlier cellular events that initiate and sustain a focal seizure are still not well defined. Their identification is central to understand the pathophysiology of focal epilepsies and to develop new pharmacological therapies for drug-resistant forms of epilepsy. The prominent involvement of astrocytes in ictogenesis was recently proposed. We test here whether a cooperation between astrocytes and neurons is a prerequisite to support ictal (seizure-like) and interictal epileptiform events. Simultaneous patch-clamp recording and Ca2+ imaging techniques were performed in a new in vitro model of focal seizures induced by local applications of N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) in rat entorhinal cortex slices. We found that a Ca2+ elevation in astrocytes correlates with both the initial development and the maintenance of a focal, seizure-like discharge. A delayed astrocyte activation during ictal discharges was also observed in other models (including the whole in vitro isolated guinea pig brain) in which the site of generation of seizure activity cannot be precisely monitored. In contrast, interictal discharges were not associated with Ca2+ changes in astrocytes. Selective inhibition or stimulation of astrocyte Ca2+ signalling blocked or enhanced, respectively, ictal discharges, but did not affect interictal discharge generation. Our data reveal that neurons engage astrocytes in a recurrent excitatory loop (possibly involving gliotransmission) that promotes seizure ignition and sustains the ictal discharge. This neuron–astrocyte interaction may represent a novel target to develop effective therapeutic strategies to control seizures. PMID:20405049

  10. Cholesterol efflux is differentially regulated in neurons and astrocytes: implications for brain cholesterol homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jing; Zhang, Xiaolu; Kusumo, Handojo; Costa, Lucio G.; Guizzetti, Marina

    2012-01-01

    Disruption of cholesterol homeostasis in the central nervous system (CNS) has been associated with neurological, neurodegenerative, and neurodevelopmental disorders. The CNS is a closed system with regard to cholesterol homeostasis, as cholesterol-delivering lipoproteins from the periphery cannot pass the blood-brain-barrier and enter the brain. Different cell types in the brain have different functions in the regulation of cholesterol homeostasis, with astrocytes producing and releasing apolipoprotein E and lipoproteins, and neurons metabolizing cholesterol to 24(S)-hydroxycholesterol. We present evidence that astrocytes and neurons adopt different mechanisms also in regulating cholesterol efflux. We found that in astrocytes cholesterol efflux is induced by both lipid-free apolipoproteins and lipoproteins, while cholesterol removal from neurons is triggered only by lipoproteins. The main pathway by which apolipoproteins induce cholesterol efflux is through ABCA1. By upregulating ABCA1 levels and by inhibiting its activity and silencing its expression, we show that ABCA1 is involved in cholesterol efflux from astrocytes but not from neurons. Furthermore, our results suggest that ABCG1 is involved in cholesterol efflux to apolipoproteins and lipoproteins from astrocytes but not from neurons, while ABCG4, whose expression is much higher in neurons than astrocytes, is involved in cholesterol efflux from neurons but not astrocytes. These results indicate that different mechanisms regulate cholesterol efflux from neurons and astrocytes, reflecting the different roles that these cell types play in brain cholesterol homeostasis. These results are important in understanding cellular targets of therapeutic drugs under development for the treatments of conditions associated with altered cholesterol homeostasis in the CNS. PMID:23010475

  11. Stochastic nanoroughness modulates neuron-astrocyte interactions and function via mechanosensing cation channels.

    PubMed

    Blumenthal, Nils R; Hermanson, Ola; Heimrich, Bernd; Shastri, V Prasad

    2014-11-11

    Extracellular soluble signals are known to play a critical role in maintaining neuronal function and homeostasis in the CNS. However, the CNS is also composed of extracellular matrix macromolecules and glia support cells, and the contribution of the physical attributes of these components in maintenance and regulation of neuronal function is not well understood. Because these components possess well-defined topography, we theorize a role for topography in neuronal development and we demonstrate that survival and function of hippocampal neurons and differentiation of telencephalic neural stem cells is modulated by nanoroughness. At roughnesses corresponding to that of healthy astrocytes, hippocampal neurons dissociated and survived independent from astrocytes and showed superior functional traits (increased polarity and calcium flux). Furthermore, telencephalic neural stem cells differentiated into neurons even under exogenous signals that favor astrocytic differentiation. The decoupling of neurons from astrocytes seemed to be triggered by changes to astrocyte apical-surface topography in response to nanoroughness. Blocking signaling through mechanosensing cation channels using GsMTx4 negated the ability of neurons to sense the nanoroughness and promoted decoupling of neurons from astrocytes, thus providing direct evidence for the role of nanotopography in neuron-astrocyte interactions. We extrapolate the role of topography to neurodegenerative conditions and show that regions of amyloid plaque buildup in brain tissue of Alzheimer's patients are accompanied by detrimental changes in tissue roughness. These findings suggest a role for astrocyte and ECM-induced topographical changes in neuronal pathologies and provide new insights for developing therapeutic targets and engineering of neural biomaterials.

  12. Astrocytes expressing ALS‐linked mutant FUS induce motor neuron death through release of tumor necrosis factor‐alpha

    PubMed Central

    Kia, Azadeh; McAvoy, Kevin; Krishnamurthy, Karthik; Trotti, Davide

    2018-01-01

    Mutations in fused in sarcoma (FUS) are linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a fatal neurodegenerative disease affecting both upper and lower motor neurons. While it is established that astrocytes contribute to the death of motor neurons in ALS, the specific contribution of mutant FUS (mutFUS) through astrocytes has not yet been studied. Here, we used primary astrocytes expressing a N‐terminally GFP tagged R521G mutant or wild‐type FUS (WTFUS) and show that mutFUS‐expressing astrocytes undergo astrogliosis, damage co‐cultured motor neurons via activation of an inflammatory response and produce conditioned medium (ACM) that is toxic to motor neurons in isolation. Time lapse imaging shows that motor neuron cultures exposed to mutFUS ACM, but not WTFUS ACM, undergo significant cell loss, which is preceded by progressive degeneration of neurites. We found that Tumor Necrosis Factor‐Alpha (TNFα) is secreted into ACM of mutFUS‐expressing astrocytes. Accordingly, mutFUS astrocyte‐mediated motor neuron toxicity is blocked by targeting soluble TNFα with neutralizing antibodies. We also found that mutant astrocytes trigger changes to motor neuron AMPA receptors (AMPAR) that render them susceptible to excitotoxicity and AMPAR‐mediated cell death. Our data provide the first evidence of astrocytic involvement in FUS‐ALS, identify TNFα as a mediator of this toxicity, and provide several potential therapeutic targets to protect motor neurons in FUS‐linked ALS. PMID:29380416

  13. Nitric Oxide in Astrocyte-Neuron Signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Nianzhen

    Astrocytes, a subtype of glial cell, have recently been shown to exhibit Ca 2+ elevations in response to neurotransmitters. A Ca 2+ elevation can propagate to adjacent astrocytes as a Ca 2+ wave, which allows an astrocyte to communicate with its neighbors. Additionally, glutamate can be released from astrocytes via a Ca 2+-dependent mechanism, thus modulating neuronal activity and synaptic transmission. In this dissertation, the author investigated the roles of another endogenous signal, nitric oxide (NO), in astrocyte-neuron signaling. First the author tested if NO is generated during astrocytic Ca 2+ signaling by imaging NO in purified murine cortical astrocytemore » cultures. Physiological concentrations of a natural messenger, ATP, caused a Ca 2+-dependent NO production. To test the roles of NO in astrocytic Ca 2+ signaling, the author applied NO to astrocyte cultures via addition of a NO donor, S-nitrosol-N-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP). NO induced an influx of external Ca 2+, possibly through store-operated Ca 2+ channels. The NO-induced Ca 2+ signaling is cGMP-independent since 8-Br-cGMP, an agonistic analog of cGMP, did not induce a detectable Ca 2+ change. The consequence of this NO-induced Ca 2+ influx was assessed by simultaneously monitoring of cytosolic and internal store Ca 2+ using fluorescent Ca 2+ indicators x-rhod-1 and mag-fluo-4. Blockage of NO signaling with the NO scavenger PTIO significantly reduced the refilling percentage of internal stores following ATP-induced Ca 2+ release, suggesting that NO modulates internal store refilling. Furthermore, locally photo-release of NO to a single astrocyte led to a Ca 2+ elevation in the stimulated astrocyte and a subsequent Ca 2+ wave to neighbors. Finally, the author tested the role of NO inglutamate-mediated astrocyte-neuron signaling by recording the astrocyte-evoked glutamate-dependent neuronal slow inward current (SIC). Although NO is not required for the SIC,PTIO reduced SIC amplitude, suggesting

  14. HIV and drug abuse mediate astrocyte senescence in a β-catenin-dependent manner leading to neuronal toxicity.

    PubMed

    Yu, Chunjiang; Narasipura, Srinivas D; Richards, Maureen H; Hu, Xiu-Ti; Yamamoto, Bryan; Al-Harthi, Lena

    2017-10-01

    Emerging evidence suggests that cell senescence plays an important role in aging-associated diseases including neurodegenerative diseases. HIV leads to a spectrum of neurologic diseases collectively termed HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). Drug abuse, particularly methamphetamine (meth), is a frequently abused psychostimulant among HIV+ individuals and its abuse exacerbates HAND. The mechanism by which HIV and meth lead to brain cell dysregulation is not entirely clear. In this study, we evaluated the impact of HIV and meth on astrocyte senescence using in vitro and several animal models. Astrocytes constitute up to 50% of brain cells and play a pivotal role in marinating brain homeostasis. We show here that HIV and meth induce significant senescence of primary human fetal astrocytes, as evaluated by induction of senescence markers (β-galactosidase and p16 INK 4A ), senescence-associated morphologic changes, and cell cycle arrest. HIV- and meth-mediated astrocyte senescence was also demonstrated in three small animal models (humanized mouse model of HIV/NSG-huPBMCs, HIV-transgenic rats, and in a meth administration rat model). Senescent astrocytes in turn mediated neuronal toxicity. Further, we show that β-catenin, a pro-survival/proliferation transcriptional co-activator, is downregulated by HIV and meth in human astrocytes and this downregulation promotes astrocyte senescence while induction of β-catenin blocks HIV- and meth-mediated astrocyte senescence. These studies, for the first time, demonstrate that HIV and meth induce astrocyte senescence and implicate the β-catenin pathway as potential therapeutic target to overcome astrocyte senescence. © 2017 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Artificial Astrocytes Improve Neural Network Performance

    PubMed Central

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B.; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-01-01

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function. PMID:21526157

  16. Artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance.

    PubMed

    Porto-Pazos, Ana B; Veiguela, Noha; Mesejo, Pablo; Navarrete, Marta; Alvarellos, Alberto; Ibáñez, Oscar; Pazos, Alejandro; Araque, Alfonso

    2011-04-19

    Compelling evidence indicates the existence of bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. Astrocytes, a type of glial cells classically considered to be passive supportive cells, have been recently demonstrated to be actively involved in the processing and regulation of synaptic information, suggesting that brain function arises from the activity of neuron-glia networks. However, the actual impact of astrocytes in neural network function is largely unknown and its application in artificial intelligence remains untested. We have investigated the consequences of including artificial astrocytes, which present the biologically defined properties involved in astrocyte-neuron communication, on artificial neural network performance. Using connectionist systems and evolutionary algorithms, we have compared the performance of artificial neural networks (NN) and artificial neuron-glia networks (NGN) to solve classification problems. We show that the degree of success of NGN is superior to NN. Analysis of performances of NN with different number of neurons or different architectures indicate that the effects of NGN cannot be accounted for an increased number of network elements, but rather they are specifically due to astrocytes. Furthermore, the relative efficacy of NGN vs. NN increases as the complexity of the network increases. These results indicate that artificial astrocytes improve neural network performance, and established the concept of Artificial Neuron-Glia Networks, which represents a novel concept in Artificial Intelligence with implications in computational science as well as in the understanding of brain function.

  17. Fisetin regulates astrocyte migration and proliferation in vitro.

    PubMed

    Wang, Nan; Yao, Fang; Li, Ke; Zhang, Lanlan; Yin, Guo; Du, Mingjun; Wu, Bingyi

    2017-04-01

    Fisetin (3,3',4',7-tetrahydroxyflavone) is a plant flavonol found in fruits and vegetables that has been reported to inhibit migration and proliferation in several types of cancer. Reactive astrogliosis involves astrocyte migration and proliferation, and contributes to the formation of glial scars in central nervous system (CNS) disorders. However, the effect of fisetin on the migration and proliferation of astrocytes remains unclear. In this study, we found that fisetin inhibited astrocyte migration in a scratch-wound assay and diminished the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK; Tyr576/577 and paxillin (Tyr118). It also suppressed cell proliferation, as indicated by the decreased number of 5-ethynyl-2'-deoxyuridine (EdU)-positive cells, induced cell cycle arrest in the G1 phase, reduced the percentage of cells in the G2 and S phase (as measured by flow cytometry), and decreased cyclin D1 expression, but had no effect on apoptosis. Fisetin also decreased the phosphorylation levels of Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk)1/2, but had no effect on the phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK). These results indicate that fisetin inhibits aggressive cell phenotypes by suppressing cell migration and proliferation via the Akt/Erk signaling pathway. Fisetin may thus have potential for use as a therapeutic strategy targeting reactive astrocytes, which may lead to the inhibition of glial scar formation in vitro.

  18. Excessive Astrocyte-Derived Neurotrophin-3 Contributes to the Abnormal Neuronal Dendritic Development in a Mouse Model of Fragile X Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Yan-yan; Liu, Shui-bing; Wu, Yu-mei; Li, Xiao-qiang; Zhao, Ming-gao

    2012-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is a form of inherited mental retardation in humans that results from expansion of a CGG repeat in the Fmr1 gene. Recent studies suggest a role of astrocytes in neuronal development. However, the mechanisms involved in the regulation process of astrocytes from FXS remain unclear. In this study, we found that astrocytes derived from a Fragile X model, the Fmr1 knockout (KO) mouse which lacks FMRP expression, inhibited the proper elaboration of dendritic processes of neurons in vitro. Furthermore, astrocytic conditioned medium (ACM) from KO astrocytes inhibited proper dendritic growth of both wild-type (WT) and KO neurons. Inducing expression of FMRP by transfection of FMRP vectors in KO astrocytes restored dendritic morphology and levels of synaptic proteins. Further experiments revealed elevated levels of the neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) in KO ACM and the prefrontal cortex of Fmr1 KO mice. However, the levels of nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), and ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) were normal. FMRP has multiple RNA–binding motifs and is involved in translational regulation. RNA–binding protein immunoprecipitation (RIP) showed the NT-3 mRNA interacted with FMRP in WT astrocytes. Addition of high concentrations of exogenous NT-3 to culture medium reduced the dendrites of neurons and synaptic protein levels, whereas these measures were ameliorated by neutralizing antibody to NT-3 or knockdown of NT-3 expression in KO astrocytes through short hairpin RNAs (shRNAs). Prefrontal cortex microinjection of WT astrocytes or NT-3 shRNA infected KO astrocytes rescued the deficit of trace fear memory in KO mice, concomitantly decreased the NT-3 levels in the prefrontal cortex. This study indicates that excessive NT-3 from astrocytes contributes to the abnormal neuronal dendritic development and that astrocytes could be a potential therapeutic target for FXS. PMID:23300470

  19. Retention, dosing, tolerability and patient reported seizure outcome of Zonisamide as only add-on treatment under real-life conditions in adult patients with partial onset seizures: Results of the observational study ZOOM.

    PubMed

    Hamer, Hajo; Baulac, Michel; McMurray, Rob; Kockelmann, Edgar

    2016-01-01

    Zonisamide is licensed for adjunctive therapy for partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalisation in patients 6 years and older and as monotherapy for the treatment of partial seizures in adult patients with newly diagnosed epilepsy, and shows a favourable pharmacokinetic profile with low interaction potential with other drugs. The aim of the present study was to gather real-life data on retention and modalities of zonisamide use when administered as only add-on treatment to a current AED monotherapy in adult patients with partial-onset seizures. This multicenter observational study was performed in 4 European countries and comprised three visits: baseline, and after 3 and 6 months. Data on patients' retention, reported efficacy, tolerability and safety, and quality of life was collected. Of 100 included patients, 93 could be evaluated. After 6 months, the retention rate of zonisamide add-on therapy was 82.8%. At this time, a reduction of seizure frequency of at least 50% was observed in 79.7% of patients, with 43.6% reporting seizure freedom over the last 3 months of the study period. Adverse events were reported by 19.4% of patients, with fatigue, agitation, dizziness, and headache being most frequent. Approximately 25% of patients were older than 60 years, many of whom suffered from late-onset epilepsy. Compared to younger patients, these patients showed considerable differences with regard to their antiepileptic drug regimen at baseline, and slightly higher responder and retention rates at 6 months. Despite limitations due to the non-interventional open-label design and the low sample size, the results show that zonisamide as only add-on therapy is well retained, indicating effectiveness in the majority of patients under real-life conditions. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  20. Deletion of mTOR in Reactive Astrocytes Suppresses Chronic Seizures in a Mouse Model of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xueqin; Sha, Longze; Sun, Nannan; Shen, Yan; Xu, Qi

    2017-01-01

    Germline and somatic mutations in key genes of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway have been identified in seizure-associated disorders. mTOR mutations lead to aberrant activation of mTOR signaling, and, although affected neurons are critical for epileptogenesis, the role of mTOR activation in glial cells remains poorly understood. We previously reported a consistent activation of the mTOR pathway in astrocytes in the epileptic foci of temporal lobe epilepsy. In this study, it was demonstrated that mTOR deletion from reactive astrocytes prevents increases in seizure frequency over the disease course. By using a tamoxifen-inducible mTOR conditional knockout system and kainic acid, a model was developed that allowed astrocyte-specific mTOR gene deletion in mice with chronic epilepsy. Animals in which mTOR was deleted from 44 % of the astrocyte population exhibited a lower seizure frequency compared with controls. Down-regulation of mTOR significantly ameliorated astrogliosis in the sclerotic hippocampus but did not rescue mossy fiber sprouting. In cultured astrocytes, the mTOR pathway modulated the stability of the astroglial glutamate transporter 1 (Glt1) and influenced the ability of astrocytes to remove extracellular glutamate. Taken together, these data indicate that astrocytes with activated mTOR signaling may provide conditions that are favorable for spontaneous recurrent seizures.

  1. Zika virus propagation and release in human fetal astrocytes can be suppressed by neutral sphingomyelinase-2 inhibitor GW4869.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yunlong; Li, Yuju; Zhang, Hainan; Zhao, Runze; Jing, Ran; Xu, Yinghua; He, Miao; Peer, Justin; Kim, Yeong C; Luo, Jiangtao; Tong, Zenghan; Zheng, Jialin

    2018-01-01

    Zika virus (ZIKV) is a neurotrophic flavivirus that is capable of infecting humans, leading to brain abnormalities during fetal development. The ZIKV infectivity in neural target cells remains poorly understood. Here, we found that ZIKV specifically infected glial fibrillary acidic protein- and S100B-positive primary human astrocytes derived from fetal brains. In contrast, neuron-specific Class III β-tubulin (TuJ1)-positive neurons in the astrocyte cultures and SOX2-positive neural progenitor cells derived from the fetal brains were less susceptible to ZIKV infection compared with astrocytes. The infected astrocytes released competent viral particles and manifested programmed cell death with a progressive cytopathic effect. Interestingly, ZIKV infection in human fetal astrocytes induced a significant increase of extracellular vesicles (EVs). Treatment with GW4869, a specific inhibitor of neutral sphingomyelinase-2, decreased EV levels, suppressed ZIKV propagation, and reduced the release of infectious virions in astrocytes. Therefore, ZIKV infects primary human fetal astrocytes and the infection can be suppressed by neutral sphingomyelinase-2 inhibitor GW4869. Further investigation into sphingomyelin metabolism and EVs may provide insights to the therapeutic treatment of ZIKV infection.

  2. General anesthesia selectively disrupts astrocyte calcium signaling in the awake mouse cortex

    PubMed Central

    Thrane, Alexander Stanley; Zeppenfeld, Douglas; Lou, Nanhong; Xu, Qiwu; Nagelhus, Erlend Arnulf; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2012-01-01

    Calcium signaling represents the principle pathway by which astrocytes respond to neuronal activity. General anesthetics are routinely used in clinical practice to induce a sleep-like state, allowing otherwise painful procedures to be performed. Anesthetic drugs are thought to mainly target neurons in the brain and act by suppressing synaptic activity. However, the direct effect of general anesthesia on astrocyte signaling in awake animals has not previously been addressed. This is a critical issue, because calcium signaling may represent an essential mechanism through which astrocytes can modulate synaptic activity. In our study, we performed calcium imaging in awake head-restrained mice and found that three commonly used anesthetic combinations (ketamine/xylazine, isoflurane, and urethane) markedly suppressed calcium transients in neocortical astrocytes. Additionally, all three anesthetics masked potentially important features of the astrocyte calcium signals, such as synchronized widespread transients that appeared to be associated with arousal in awake animals. Notably, anesthesia affected calcium transients in both processes and soma and depressed spontaneous signals, as well as calcium responses, evoked by whisker stimulation or agonist application. We show that these calcium transients are inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate type 2 receptor (IP3R2)-dependent but resistant to a local blockade of glutamatergic or purinergic signaling. Finally, we found that doses of anesthesia insufficient to affect neuronal responses to whisker stimulation selectively suppressed astrocyte calcium signals. Taken together, these data suggest that general anesthesia may suppress astrocyte calcium signals independently of neuronal activity. We propose that these glial effects may constitute a nonneuronal mechanism for sedative action of anesthetic drugs. PMID:23112168

  3. Age, environment, object recognition and morphological diversity of GFAP-immunolabeled astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Diniz, Daniel Guerreiro; de Oliveira, Marcus Augusto; de Lima, Camila Mendes; Fôro, César Augusto Raiol; Sosthenes, Marcia Consentino Kronka; Bento-Torres, João; da Costa Vasconcelos, Pedro Fernando; Anthony, Daniel Clive; Diniz, Cristovam Wanderley Picanço

    2016-10-10

    Few studies have explored the glial response to a standard environment and how the response may be associated with age-related cognitive decline in learning and memory. Here we investigated aging and environmental influences on hippocampal-dependent tasks and on the morphology of an unbiased selected population of astrocytes from the molecular layer of dentate gyrus, which is the main target of perforant pathway. Six and twenty-month-old female, albino Swiss mice were housed, from weaning, in a standard or enriched environment, including running wheels for exercise and tested for object recognition and contextual memories. Young adult and aged subjects, independent of environment, were able to distinguish familiar from novel objects. All experimental groups, except aged mice from standard environment, distinguish stationary from displaced objects. Young adult but not aged mice, independent of environment, were able to distinguish older from recent objects. Only young mice from an enriched environment were able to distinguish novel from familiar contexts. Unbiased selected astrocytes from the molecular layer of the dentate gyrus were reconstructed in three-dimensions and classified using hierarchical cluster analysis of bimodal or multimodal morphological features. We found two morphological phenotypes of astrocytes and we designated type I the astrocytes that exhibited significantly higher values of morphological complexity as compared with type II. Complexity = [Sum of the terminal orders + Number of terminals] × [Total branch length/Number of primary branches]. On average, type I morphological complexity seems to be much more sensitive to age and environmental influences than that of type II. Indeed, aging and environmental impoverishment interact and reduce the morphological complexity of type I astrocytes at a point that they could not be distinguished anymore from type II. We suggest these two types of astrocytes may have different physiological roles

  4. Astrocyte glycogen and brain energy metabolism.

    PubMed

    Brown, Angus M; Ransom, Bruce R

    2007-09-01

    The brain contains glycogen but at low concentration compared with liver and muscle. In the adult brain, glycogen is found predominantly in astrocytes. Astrocyte glycogen content is modulated by a number of factors including some neurotransmitters and ambient glucose concentration. Compelling evidence indicates that astrocyte glycogen breaks down during hypoglycemia to lactate that is transferred to adjacent neurons or axons where it is used aerobically as fuel. In the case of CNS white matter, this source of energy can extend axon function for 20 min or longer. Likewise, during periods of intense neural activity when energy demand exceeds glucose supply, astrocyte glycogen is degraded to lactate, a portion of which is transferred to axons for fuel. Astrocyte glycogen, therefore, offers some protection against hypoglycemic neural injury and ensures that neurons and axons can maintain their function during very intense periods of activation. These emerging principles about the roles of astrocyte glycogen contradict the long held belief that this metabolic pool has little or no functional significance.

  5. Astrocytes express functional TRPV2 ion channels.

    PubMed

    Shibasaki, Koji; Ishizaki, Yasuki; Mandadi, Sravan

    2013-11-15

    Thermosensitive transient receptor potential (thermo TRP) channels are important for sensory transduction. Among them, TRPV2 has an interesting characteristic of being activated by very high temperature (>52 °C). In addition to the heat sensor function, TRPV2 also acts as a mechanosensor, an osomosensor and a lipid sensor. It has been reported that TRPV2 is expressed in heart, intestine, pancreas and sensory nerves. In the central nervous system, neuronal TRPV2 expression was reported, however, glial expression and the precise roles of TRPV2 have not been determined. To explore the functional expression of TRPV2 in astrocytes, the expression was determined by histological and physiological methods. Interestingly, TRPV2 expression was detected in plasma membrane of astrocytes, and the astrocytic TRPV2 was activated by very high temperature (>50 °C) consistent with the reported characteristic. We revealed that the astrocytic TRPV2 was also activated by lysophosphatidylcholine, a known endogenous lipid ligand for TRPV2, suggesting that astrocytic TRPV2 might regulate neuronal activities in response to lipid metabolism. Thus, for the first time we revealed that TRPV2 is functionally expressed in astrocytes in addition to neurons. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Astrocyte atrophy and immune dysfunction in self-harming macaques.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kim M; Chiu, Kevin B; Sansing, Hope A; Inglis, Fiona M; Baker, Kate C; MacLean, Andrew G

    2013-01-01

    Self-injurious behavior (SIB) is a complex condition that exhibits a spectrum of abnormal neuropsychological and locomotor behaviors. Mechanisms for neuropathogenesis could include irregular immune activation, host soluble factors, and astrocyte dysfunction. We examined the role of astrocytes as modulators of immune function in macaques with SIB. We measured changes in astrocyte morphology and function. Paraffin sections of frontal cortices from rhesus macaques identified with SIB were stained for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2). Morphologic features of astrocytes were determined using computer-assisted camera lucida. There was atrophy of white matter astrocyte cell bodies, decreased arbor length in both white and gray matter astrocytes, and decreased bifurcations and tips on astrocytes in animals with SIB. This was combined with a five-fold increase in the proportion of astrocytes immunopositive for TLR2. These results provide direct evidence that SIB induces immune activation of astrocytes concomitant with quantifiably different morphology.

  7. Role of high-mobility group box 1 in methamphetamine-induced activation and migration of astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuan; Zhu, Tiebing; Zhang, Xiaotian; Chao, Jie; Hu, Gang; Yao, Honghong

    2015-09-04

    Mounting evidence has indicated that high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) is involved in cell activation and migration. Our previous study demonstrated that methamphetamine mediates activation of astrocytes via sigma-1 receptor (σ-1R). However, the elements downstream of σ-1R in this process remain poorly understood. Thus, we examined the molecular mechanisms involved in astrocyte activation and migration induced by methamphetamine. The expression of HMGB1, σ-1R, and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) was examined by western blot and immunofluorescent staining. The phosphorylation of cell signaling pathways was detected by western blot, and cell migration was examined using a wound-healing assay in rat C6 astroglia-like cells transfected with lentivirus containing red fluorescent protein (LV-RFP) as well as in primary human astrocytes. The role of HMGB1 in astrocyte activation and migration was validated using a siRNA approach. Exposure of C6 cells to methamphetamine increased the expression of HMGB1 via the activation of σ-1R, Src, ERK mitogen-activated protein kinase, and downstream NF-κB p65 pathways. Moreover, methamphetamine treatment resulted in increased cell activation and migration in C6 cells and primary human astrocytes. Knockdown of HMGB1 in astrocytes transfected with HMGB1 siRNA attenuated the increased cell activation and migration induced by methamphetamine, thereby implicating the role of HMGB1 in the activation and migration of C6 cells and primary human astrocytes. This study demonstrated that methamphetamine-mediated activation and migration of astrocytes involved HMGB1 up-regulation through an autocrine mechanism. Targeting HMGB1 could provide insights into the development of a potential therapeutic approach for alleviation of cell activation and migration of astrocytes induced by methamphetamine.

  8. Astrocyte-derived interleukin-15 exacerbates ischemic brain injury via propagation of cellular immunity.

    PubMed

    Li, Minshu; Li, Zhiguo; Yao, Yang; Jin, Wei-Na; Wood, Kristofer; Liu, Qiang; Shi, Fu-Dong; Hao, Junwei

    2017-01-17

    Astrocytes are believed to bridge interactions between infiltrating lymphocytes and neurons during brain ischemia, but the mechanisms for this action are poorly understood. Here we found that interleukin-15 (IL-15) is dramatically up-regulated in astrocytes of postmortem brain tissues from patients with ischemic stroke and in a mouse model of transient focal brain ischemia. We generated a glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) promoter-controlled IL-15-expressing transgenic mouse (GFAP-IL-15 tg ) line and found enlarged brain infarcts, exacerbated neurodeficits after the induction of brain ischemia. In addition, knockdown of IL-15 in astrocytes attenuated ischemic brain injury. Interestingly, the accumulation of CD8 + T and natural killer (NK) cells was augmented in these GFAP-IL-15 tg mice after brain ischemia. Of note, depletion of CD8 + T or NK cells attenuated ischemic brain injury in GFAP-IL-15 tg mice. Furthermore, knockdown of the IL-15 receptor α or blockade of cell-to-cell contact diminished the activation and effector function of CD8 + T and NK cells in GFAP-IL-15 tg mice, suggesting that astrocytic IL-15 is delivered in trans to target cells. Collectively, these findings indicate that astrocytic IL-15 could aggravate postischemic brain damage via propagation of CD8 + T and NK cell-mediated immunity.

  9. Astrocytes and endoplasmic reticulum stress: A bridge between obesity and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Martin-Jiménez, Cynthia A; García-Vega, Ángela; Cabezas, Ricardo; Aliev, Gjumrakch; Echeverria, Valentina; González, Janneth; Barreto, George E

    2017-11-01

    Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a subcellular organelle involved in protein folding and processing. ER stress constitutes a cellular process characterized by accumulation of misfolded proteins, impaired lipid metabolism and induction of inflammatory responses. ER stress has been suggested to be involved in several human pathologies, including neurodegenerative diseases and obesity. Different studies have shown that both neurodegenerative diseases and obesity trigger similar cellular responses to ER stress. Moreover, both diseases are assessed in astrocytes as evidences suggest these cells as key regulators of brain homeostasis. However, the exact contributions to the effects of ER stress in astrocytes in the various neurodegenerative diseases and its relation with obesity are not well known. Here, we discuss recent advances in the understanding of molecular mechanisms that regulate ER stress-related disorders in astrocytes such as obesity and neurodegeneration. Moreover, we outline the correlation between the activated proteins of the unfolded protein response (UPR) in these pathological conditions in order to identify possible therapeutic targets for ER stress in astrocytes. We show that ER stress in astrocytes shares UPR activation pathways during both obesity and neurodegenerative diseases, demonstrating that UPR related proteins like ER chaperone GRP 78/Bip, PERK pathway and other exogenous molecules ameliorate UPR response and promote neuroprotection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Channel-mediated lactate release by K⁺-stimulated astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sotelo-Hitschfeld, Tamara; Niemeyer, María I; Mächler, Philipp; Ruminot, Iván; Lerchundi, Rodrigo; Wyss, Matthias T; Stobart, Jillian; Fernández-Moncada, Ignacio; Valdebenito, Rocío; Garrido-Gerter, Pamela; Contreras-Baeza, Yasna; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick; Lengacher, Sylvain; San Martín, Alejandro; Le Douce, Juliette; Bonvento, Gilles; Magistretti, Pierre J; Sepúlveda, Francisco V; Weber, Bruno; Barros, L Felipe

    2015-03-11

    Excitatory synaptic transmission is accompanied by a local surge in interstitial lactate that occurs despite adequate oxygen availability, a puzzling phenomenon termed aerobic glycolysis. In addition to its role as an energy substrate, recent studies have shown that lactate modulates neuronal excitability acting through various targets, including NMDA receptors and G-protein-coupled receptors specific for lactate, but little is known about the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for the increase in interstitial lactate. Using a panel of genetically encoded fluorescence nanosensors for energy metabolites, we show here that mouse astrocytes in culture, in cortical slices, and in vivo maintain a steady-state reservoir of lactate. The reservoir was released to the extracellular space immediately after exposure of astrocytes to a physiological rise in extracellular K(+) or cell depolarization. Cell-attached patch-clamp analysis of cultured astrocytes revealed a 37 pS lactate-permeable ion channel activated by cell depolarization. The channel was modulated by lactate itself, resulting in a positive feedback loop for lactate release. A rapid fall in intracellular lactate levels was also observed in cortical astrocytes of anesthetized mice in response to local field stimulation. The existence of an astrocytic lactate reservoir and its quick mobilization via an ion channel in response to a neuronal cue provides fresh support to lactate roles in neuronal fueling and in gliotransmission. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/354168-11$15.00/0.

  11. Notch1-STAT3-ETBR signaling axis controls reactive astrocyte proliferation after brain injury.

    PubMed

    LeComte, Matthew D; Shimada, Issei S; Sherwin, Casey; Spees, Jeffrey L

    2015-07-14

    Defining the signaling network that controls reactive astrogliosis may provide novel treatment targets for patients with diverse CNS injuries and pathologies. We report that the radial glial cell antigen RC2 identifies the majority of proliferating glial fibrillary acidic protein-positive (GFAP(+)) reactive astrocytes after stroke. These cells highly expressed endothelin receptor type B (ETB(R)) and Jagged1, a Notch1 receptor ligand. To study signaling in adult reactive astrocytes, we developed a model based on reactive astrocyte-derived neural stem cells isolated from GFAP-CreER-Notch1 conditional knockout (cKO) mice. By loss- and gain-of-function studies and promoter activity assays, we found that Jagged1/Notch1 signaling increased ETB(R) expression indirectly by raising the level of phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), a previously unidentified EDNRB transcriptional activator. Similar to inducible transgenic GFAP-CreER-Notch1-cKO mice, GFAP-CreER-ETB(R)-cKO mice exhibited a defect in reactive astrocyte proliferation after cerebral ischemia. Our results indicate that the Notch1-STAT3-ETB(R) axis connects a signaling network that promotes reactive astrocyte proliferation after brain injury.

  12. Inhibition of astrocyte metabolism is not the primary mechanism for anaesthetic hypnosis.

    PubMed

    Voss, Logan J; Harvey, Martyn G; Sleigh, James W

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes have been promoted as a possible mechanistic target for anaesthetic hypnosis. The aim of this study was to explore this using the neocortical brain slice preparation. The methods were in two parts. Firstly, multiple general anaesthetic compounds demonstrating varying in vivo hypnotic potency were analysed for their effect on "zero-magnesium" seizure-like event (SLE) activity in mouse neocortical slices. Subsequently, the effect of astrocyte metabolic inhibition was investigated in neocortical slices, and compared with that of the anaesthetic drugs. The rationale was that, if suppression of astrocytes was both necessary and sufficient to cause hypnosis in vivo, then inhibition of astrocytic metabolism in slices should mimic the anaesthetic effect. In vivo anaesthetic potency correlated strongly with the magnitude of reduction in SLE frequency in neocortical slices (R(2) 37.7 %, p = 0.002). Conversely, SLE frequency and length were significantly enhanced during exposure to both fluoroacetate (23 and 20 % increase, respectively, p < 0.01) and aminoadipate (12 and 38 % increase, respectively, p < 0.01 and p < 0.05). The capacity of an anaesthetic agent to reduce SLE frequency in the neocortical slice is a good indicator of its in vivo hypnotic potency. The results do not support the hypothesis that astrocytic metabolic inhibition is a mechanism of anaesthetic hypnosis.

  13. Astrocyte Kir4.1 ion channel deficits contribute to neuronal dysfunction in Huntington's disease model mice.

    PubMed

    Tong, Xiaoping; Ao, Yan; Faas, Guido C; Nwaobi, Sinifunanya E; Xu, Ji; Haustein, Martin D; Anderson, Mark A; Mody, Istvan; Olsen, Michelle L; Sofroniew, Michael V; Khakh, Baljit S

    2014-05-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by striatal medium spiny neuron (MSN) dysfunction, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. We explored roles for astrocytes, in which mutant huntingtin is expressed in HD patients and mouse models. We found that symptom onset in R6/2 and Q175 HD mouse models was not associated with classical astrogliosis, but was associated with decreased Kir4.1 K(+) channel functional expression, leading to elevated in vivo striatal extracellular K(+), which increased MSN excitability in vitro. Viral delivery of Kir4.1 channels to striatal astrocytes restored Kir4.1 function, normalized extracellular K(+), ameliorated aspects of MSN dysfunction, prolonged survival and attenuated some motor phenotypes in R6/2 mice. These findings indicate that components of altered MSN excitability in HD may be caused by heretofore unknown disturbances of astrocyte-mediated K(+) homeostasis, revealing astrocytes and Kir4.1 channels as therapeutic targets.

  14. Inclusion bodies in cerebral cortical astrocytes: a new change of astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Minagawa, M; Shioda, K; Shimizu, Y; Isshiki, T

    1992-01-01

    A unique pathological finding of astrocytes was observed in the brain of a 20-year-old man who had severe physical and mental retardation. The brain was malformed showing micropolygyria in several cortical areas. A large number of hypertrophic astrocytes with eosinophilic granular substances in their cytoplasm were found throughout the cerebral cortex. Several staining procedures and electron microscopical examinations were carried out on these intracytoplasmic inclusion. It was found that the appearance and staining character of these inclusions were different from other astrocytic changes, especially the Rosenthal fiber, described so far. The authors consider that these inclusion bodies in cerebral cortical astrocytes represent new pathological changes of astrocytes that appear to be associated with malformation of the brain.

  15. Connexin-Mediated Functional and Metabolic Coupling Between Astrocytes and Neurons.

    PubMed

    Mayorquin, Lady C; Rodriguez, Andrea V; Sutachan, Jhon-Jairo; Albarracín, Sonia L

    2018-01-01

    The central nervous system (CNS) requires sophisticated regulation of neuronal activity. This modulation is partly accomplished by non-neuronal cells, characterized by the presence of transmembrane gap junctions (GJs) and hemichannels (HCs). This allows small molecule diffusion to guarantee neuronal synaptic activity and plasticity. Astrocytes are metabolically and functionally coupled to neurons by the uptake, binding and recycling of neurotransmitters. In addition, astrocytes release metabolites, such as glutamate, glutamine, D-serine, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and lactate, regulating synaptic activity and plasticity by pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms. Uncoupling neuroglial communication leads to alterations in synaptic transmission that can be detrimental to neuronal circuit function and behavior. Therefore, understanding the pathways and mechanisms involved in this intercellular communication is fundamental for the search of new targets that can be used for several neurological disease treatments. This review will focus on molecular mechanisms mediating physiological and pathological coupling between astrocytes and neurons through GJs and HCs.

  16. Isolation and Characterization of Ischemia-Derived Astrocytes (IDAs) with Ability to Transactivate Quiescent Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Villarreal, Alejandro; Rosciszewski, Gerardo; Murta, Veronica; Cadena, Vanesa; Usach, Vanina; Dodes-Traian, Martin M.; Setton-Avruj, Patricia; Barbeito, Luis H.; Ramos, Alberto J.

    2016-01-01

    Reactive gliosis involving activation and proliferation of astrocytes and microglia, is a widespread but largely complex and graded glial response to brain injury. Astroglial population has a previously underestimated high heterogeneity with cells differing in their morphology, gene expression profile, and response to injury. Here, we identified a subset of reactive astrocytes isolated from brain focal ischemic lesions that show several atypical characteristics. Ischemia-derived astrocytes (IDAs) were isolated from early ischemic penumbra and core. IDA did not originate from myeloid precursors, but rather from pre-existing local progenitors. Isolated IDA markedly differ from primary astrocytes, as they proliferate in vitro with high cell division rate, show increased migratory ability, have reduced replicative senescence and grow in the presence of macrophages within the limits imposed by the glial scar. Remarkably, IDA produce a conditioned medium that strongly induced activation on quiescent primary astrocytes and potentiated the neuronal death triggered by oxygen-glucose deprivation. When re-implanted into normal rat brains, eGFP-IDA migrated around the injection site and induced focal reactive gliosis. Inhibition of gamma secretases or culture on quiescent primary astrocytes monolayers facilitated IDA differentiation to astrocytes. We propose that IDA represent an undifferentiated, pro-inflammatory, highly replicative and migratory astroglial subtype emerging from the ischemic microenvironment that may contribute to the expansion of reactive gliosis. Main Points: Ischemia-derived astrocytes (IDA) were isolated from brain ischemic tissue IDA show reduced replicative senescence, increased cell division and spontaneous migration IDA potentiate death of oxygen-glucose deprived cortical neurons IDA propagate reactive gliosis on quiescent astrocytes in vitro and in vivo Inhibition of gamma secretases facilitates IDA differentiation to astrocytes PMID:27313509

  17. Electrospun fiber surface nanotopography influences astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Christopher D; D'Amato, Anthony R; Puhl, Devan L; Wich, Douglas M; Vespermann, Amanda; Gilbert, Ryan J

    2018-05-15

    Aligned, electrospun fiber scaffolds provide topographical guidance for regenerating neurons and glia after central nervous system injury. To date, no study has explored how fiber surface nanotopography affects astrocyte response to fibrous scaffolds. Astrocytes play important roles in the glial scar, the blood brain barrier, and in maintaining homeostasis in the central nervous system. In this study, electrospun poly L-lactic acid fibers were engineered with smooth, pitted, or divoted surface nanotopography. Cortical or spinal cord primary rat astrocytes were cultured on the surfaces for either 1 or 3 days to examine the astrocyte response over time. The results showed that cortical astrocytes were significantly shorter and broader on the pitted and divoted fibers compared to those on smooth fibers. However, spinal cord astrocyte morphology was not significantly altered by the surface features. These findings indicate that astrocytes from unique anatomical locations respond differently to the presence of nanotopography. Western Blot results show that the differences in morphology were not associated with significant changes in GFAP or vinculin in either astrocyte population, suggesting that surface pits and divots do not induce a reactive phenotype in either cortical or spinal cord astrocytes. Finally, astrocytes were co-cultured with dorsal root ganglia to determine how the surfaces affected astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth. Astrocytes cultured on the fibers for shorter periods of time (1 day) generally supported longer neurite outgrowth. Pitted and divoted fibers restricted spinal cord astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth, while smooth fibers increased 3 day spinal cord astrocyte-mediated neurite outgrowth. In total, fiber surface nanotopography can influence astrocyte elongation and influence the capability of astrocytes to direct neurites. Therefore, fiber surface characteristics should be carefully controlled to optimize astrocyte-mediated axonal

  18. HIV-1-associated inflammation and antiretroviral therapy regulate astrocyte endoplasmic reticulum stress responses.

    PubMed

    Nooka, Shruthi; Ghorpade, Anuja

    2017-01-01

    ARV drugs and IL-1 β induced UPR, AEG-1 expression, intracellular calcium, and mitochondrial depolarization in astrocytes. This study uncovers astrocyte ER stress as a novel therapeutic target in the management of HIV-1-associated neurotoxicity and possibly in the treatment of neuroAIDS.

  19. Sodium signaling and astrocyte energy metabolism.

    PubMed

    Chatton, Jean-Yves; Magistretti, Pierre J; Barros, L Felipe

    2016-10-01

    The Na(+) gradient across the plasma membrane is constantly exploited by astrocytes as a secondary energy source to regulate the intracellular and extracellular milieu, and discard waste products. One of the most prominent roles of astrocytes in the brain is the Na(+) -dependent clearance of glutamate released by neurons during synaptic transmission. The intracellular Na(+) load collectively generated by these processes converges at the Na,K-ATPase pump, responsible for Na(+) extrusion from the cell, which is achieved at the expense of cellular ATP. These processes represent pivotal mechanisms enabling astrocytes to increase the local availability of metabolic substrates in response to neuronal activity. This review presents basic principles linking the intracellular handling of Na(+) following activity-related transmembrane fluxes in astrocytes and the energy metabolic pathways involved. We propose a role of Na(+) as an energy currency and as a mediator of metabolic signals in the context of neuron-glia interactions. We further discuss the possible impact of the astrocytic syncytium for the distribution and coordination of the metabolic response, and the compartmentation of these processes in cellular microdomains and subcellular organelles. Finally, we illustrate future avenues of investigation into signaling mechanisms aimed at bridging the gap between Na(+) and the metabolic machinery. GLIA 2016;64:1667-1676. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Decreased Astrocytic Thrombospondin-1 Secretion After Chronic Ammonia Treatment Reduces the Level of Synaptic Proteins: In Vitro and In Vivo Studies

    PubMed Central

    Jayakumar, A. R.; Tong, X. Y.; Curtis, K. M.; Ruiz-Cordero, R.; Shamaladevi, N.; Abuzamel, M.; Johnstone, J.; Gaidosh, G.; Rama Rao, K.V.; Norenberg, M. D.

    2014-01-01

    Chronic hepatic encephalopathy (CHE) is a major complication in patients with severe liver disease. Elevated blood and brain ammonia levels have been implicated in its pathogenesis, and astrocytes are the principal neural cells involved in this disorder. Since defective synthesis and release of astrocytic factors have been shown to impair synaptic integrity in other neurological conditions, we examined whether thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1), an astrocytic factor involved in the maintenance of synaptic integrity, is also altered in CHE. Cultured astrocytes were exposed to ammonia (NH4Cl, 0.5–2.5 mM) for 1–10 days, and TSP-1 content was measured in cell extracts and culture media. Astrocytes exposed to ammonia exhibited a reduction in intra- and extracellular TSP-1 levels. Exposure of cultured neurons to conditioned media (CM) from ammonia-treated astrocytes showed a decrease in synaptophysin, PSD95 and synaptotagmin levels. CM from TSP-1 overexpressing astrocytes that were treated with ammonia, when added to cultured neurons, reversed the decline in synaptic proteins. Recombinant TSP-1 similarly reversed the decrease in synaptic proteins. Metformin, an agent known to increase TSP-1 synthesis in other cell types also reversed the ammonia-induced TSP-1 reduction. Likewise, we found a significant decline in TSP-1 level in cortical astrocytes, as well as a reduction in synaptophysin content in vivo in a rat model of CHE. These findings suggest that TSP-1 may represent an important therapeutic target for CHE. PMID:25040426

  1. Neuronal activity determines distinct gliotransmitter release from a single astrocyte

    PubMed Central

    Covelo, Ana

    2018-01-01

    Accumulating evidence indicates that astrocytes are actively involved in brain function by regulating synaptic activity and plasticity. Different gliotransmitters, such as glutamate, ATP, GABA or D-serine, released form astrocytes have been shown to induce different forms of synaptic regulation. However, whether a single astrocyte may release different gliotransmitters is unknown. Here we show that mouse hippocampal astrocytes activated by endogenous (neuron-released endocannabinoids or GABA) or exogenous (single astrocyte Ca2+ uncaging) stimuli modulate putative single CA3-CA1 hippocampal synapses. The astrocyte-mediated synaptic modulation was biphasic and consisted of an initial glutamate-mediated potentiation followed by a purinergic-mediated depression of neurotransmitter release. The temporal dynamic properties of this biphasic synaptic regulation depended on the firing frequency and duration of the neuronal activity that stimulated astrocytes. Present results indicate that single astrocytes can decode neuronal activity and, in response, release distinct gliotransmitters to differentially regulate neurotransmission at putative single synapses. PMID:29380725

  2. Feasibility of amlodipine besylate, chloroquine phosphate, dapsone, phenytoin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, sulfadiazine, sulfasalazine, tetracycline hydrochloride, trimethoprim and zonisamide in SyrSpend(®) SF PH4 oral suspensions.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Anderson O; Polonini, Hudson C; Silva, Sharlene L; Patrício, Fernando B; Brandão, Marcos Antônio F; Raposo, Nádia R B

    2016-01-25

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of 10 commonly used active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) compounded in oral suspensions using an internationally used suspending vehicle (SyrSpend(®) SF PH4 liquid): (i) amlodipine, (as besylate) 1.0mg/mL; (ii) chloroquine phosphate,15.0 mg/mL; (iii) dapsone, 2.0 mg/mL; (iv) phenytoin, 15.0 mg/mL; (v) pyridoxine hydrochloride, 50.0 mg/mL; (vi) sulfadiazine, 100.0 mg/mL; (vii) sulfasalazine, 100.0 mg/mL; (viii) tetracycline hydrochloride, 25.0 mg/mL; (ix) trimethoprim, 10.0 mg/mL; and (x) zonisamide, 10.0 mg/mL. All suspensions were stored both at controlled refrigeration (2-8 °C) and controlled room temperature (20-25 °C). Feasibility was assessed by measuring the percent recovery at varying time points throughout a 90-day period. API quantification was performed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC-UV), via a stability-indicating method. Given the percentage of recovery of the APIs within the suspensions, the expiration date of the final products (API+vehicle) was at least 90 days for all suspensions with regard to both the controlled temperatures. This suggests that the vehicle is stable for compounding APIs from different pharmacological classes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Derivation of Functional Human Astrocytes from Cerebral Organoids

    PubMed Central

    Dezonne, Rômulo Sperduto; Sartore, Rafaela Costa; Nascimento, Juliana Minardi; Saia-Cereda, Verônica M.; Romão, Luciana Ferreira; Alves-Leon, Soniza Vieira; de Souza, Jorge Marcondes; Martins-de-Souza, Daniel; Rehen, Stevens Kastrup; Gomes, Flávia Carvalho Alcantara

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes play a critical role in the development and homeostasis of the central nervous system (CNS). Astrocyte dysfunction results in several neurological and degenerative diseases. However, a major challenge to our understanding of astrocyte physiology and pathology is the restriction of studies to animal models, human post-mortem brain tissues, or samples obtained from invasive surgical procedures. Here, we report a protocol to generate human functional astrocytes from cerebral organoids derived from human pluripotent stem cells. The cellular isolation of cerebral organoids yielded cells that were morphologically and functionally like astrocytes. Immunolabelling and proteomic assays revealed that human organoid-derived astrocytes express the main astrocytic molecular markers, including glutamate transporters, specific enzymes and cytoskeletal proteins. We found that organoid-derived astrocytes strongly supported neuronal survival and neurite outgrowth and responded to ATP through transient calcium wave elevations, which are hallmarks of astrocyte physiology. Additionally, these astrocytes presented similar functional pathways to those isolated from adult human cortex by surgical procedures. This is the first study to provide proteomic and functional analyses of astrocytes isolated from human cerebral organoids. The isolation of these astrocytes holds great potential for the investigation of developmental and evolutionary features of the human brain and provides a useful approach to drug screening and neurodegenerative disease modelling. PMID:28345587

  4. Pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate activates the Nrf2 pathway in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Liddell, Jeffrey R; Lehtonen, Sarka; Duncan, Clare; Keksa-Goldsteine, Velta; Levonen, Anna-Liisa; Goldsteins, Gundars; Malm, Tarja; White, Anthony R; Koistinaho, Jari; Kanninen, Katja M

    2016-02-26

    Endogenous defense against oxidative stress is controlled by nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2). The normal compensatory mechanisms to combat oxidative stress appear to be insufficient to protect against the prolonged exposure to reactive oxygen species during disease. Counterbalancing the effects of oxidative stress by up-regulation of Nrf2 signaling has been shown to be effective in various disease models where oxidative stress is implicated, including Alzheimer's disease. Stimulation of Nrf2 signaling by small-molecule activators is an appealing strategy to up-regulate the endogenous defense mechanisms of cells. Here, we investigate Nrf2 induction by the metal chelator and known nuclear factor-κB inhibitor pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC) in cultured astrocytes and neurons, and mouse brain. Nrf2 induction is further examined in cultures co-treated with PDTC and kinase inhibitors or amyloid-beta, and in Nrf2-deficient cultures. We show that PDTC is a potent inducer of Nrf2 signaling specifically in astrocytes and demonstrate the critical role of Nrf2 in PDTC-mediated protection against oxidative stress. This induction appears to be regulated by both Keap1 and glycogen synthase kinase 3β. Furthermore, the presence of amyloid-beta magnifies PDTC-mediated induction of endogenous protective mechanisms, therefore suggesting that PDTC may be an effective Nrf2 inducer in the context of Alzheimer's disease. Finally, we show that PDTC increases brain copper content and glial expression of heme oxygenase-1, and decreases lipid peroxidation in vivo, promoting a more antioxidative environment. PDTC activates Nrf2 and its antioxidative targets in astrocytes but not neurons. These effects may contribute to the neuroprotection observed for PDTC in models of Alzheimer's disease.

  5. The Astrocyte: Powerhouse and Recycling Center

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Bruno; Barros, L. Felipe

    2015-01-01

    Brain metabolism is characterized by fuel monodependence, high-energy expenditure, autonomy from the rest of body, local recycling, and marked division of labor between cell types. Although neurons spend most of the brain’s energy on signaling, astrocytes bear the brunt of the metabolic load, controlling the composition of the interstitial fluid, supplying neurons with energy substrates and precursors for biosynthesis, and recycling neurotransmitters, oxidized scavengers, and other waste products. Outstanding questions in this field are the role of oligodendrocytes, the metabolic behavior of the different subtypes of astrocytes during development and disease, and the emerging notion that metabolism may participate directly in information processing. PMID:25680832

  6. Phenotypic and Gene Expression Modification with Normal Brain Aging in GFAP-Positive Astrocytes and Neural Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Bernal, Giovanna M.; Peterson, Daniel A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Astrocytes secrete growth factors that are both neuroprotective and supportive for the local environment. Identified by glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression, astrocytes exhibit heterogeneity in morphology and in expression of phenotypic markers and growth factors throughout different adult brain regions. In adult neurogenic niches, astrocytes secrete vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) within the neurogenic niche, and are also a source of special GFAP-positive multipotent neural stem cells (NSCs). Normal aging is accompanied by a decline in CNS function and reduced neurogenesis. We asked if a decreased availability of astrocyte-derived factors may contribute to the age-related decline in neurogenesis. Determining alterations of astrocytic activity in the aging brain is crucial for understanding CNS homeostasis in aging and for assessing appropriate therapeutic targets for an aging population. We found region-specific alterations in gene expression of GFAP, VEGF and FGF-2 and their receptors in the aged brain corresponding to changes in astrocytic reactivity, supporting astrocytic heterogeneity and demonstrating a differential aging effect. We found that GFAP-positive NSCs uniquely coexpress both VEGF and its key mitotic receptor Flk-1 in both young and aged hippocampus, indicating a possible autocrine/paracrine signaling mechanism. VEGF expression is lost once NSCs commit to a neuronal fate, but Flk-1-mediated sensitivity to VEGF signaling is maintained. We propose that age-related astrocytic changes result in reduced VEGF and FGF-2 signaling, which in turn limits neural stem cell and progenitor cell maintenance and contributes to decreased neurogenesis. PMID:21385309

  7. Phenotypic and gene expression modification with normal brain aging in GFAP-positive astrocytes and neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Bernal, Giovanna M; Peterson, Daniel A

    2011-06-01

    Astrocytes secrete growth factors that are both neuroprotective and supportive for the local environment. Identified by glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) expression, astrocytes exhibit heterogeneity in morphology and in the expression of phenotypic markers and growth factors throughout different adult brain regions. In adult neurogenic niches, astrocytes secrete vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) within the neurogenic niche and are also a source of special GFAP-positive multipotent neural stem cells (NSCs). Normal aging is accompanied by a decline in CNS function and reduced neurogenesis. We asked whether a decreased availability of astrocyte-derived factors may contribute to the age-related decline in neurogenesis. Determining alterations of astrocytic activity in the aging brain is crucial for understanding CNS homeostasis in aging and for assessing appropriate therapeutic targets for an aging population. We found region-specific alterations in the gene expression of GFAP, VEGF, and FGF-2 and their receptors in the aged brain corresponding to changes in astrocytic reactivity, supporting astrocytic heterogeneity and demonstrating a differential aging effect. We found that GFAP-positive NSCs uniquely coexpress both VEGF and its key mitotic receptor Flk-1 in both young and aged hippocampus, indicating a possible autocrine/paracrine signaling mechanism. VEGF expression is lost once NSCs commit to a neuronal fate, but Flk-1-mediated sensitivity to VEGF signaling is maintained. We propose that age-related astrocytic changes result in reduced VEGF and FGF-2 signaling, which in turn limits NSC and progenitor cell maintenance and contributes to decreased neurogenesis. © 2011 The Authors. Aging Cell © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/Anatomical Society of Great Britain and Ireland.

  8. Full-length amyloid precursor protein regulates lipoprotein metabolism and amyloid-β clearance in human astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Fong, Lauren K; Yang, Max M; Dos Santos Chaves, Rodrigo; Reyna, Sol M; Langness, Vanessa F; Woodruff, Grace; Roberts, Elizabeth A; Young, Jessica E; Goldstein, Lawrence S B

    2018-06-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that alterations in cholesterol homeostasis are involved in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis. Amyloid precursor protein (APP) or multiple fragments generated by proteolytic processing of APP have previously been implicated in the regulation of cholesterol metabolism. However, the physiological function of APP in regulating lipoprotein homeostasis in astrocytes, which are responsible for de novo cholesterol biosynthesis and regulation in the brain, remains unclear. To address this, here we used CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing to generate isogenic APP-knockout (KO) human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) and differentiated them into human astrocytes. We found that APP-KO astrocytes have reduced cholesterol and elevated levels of sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) target gene transcripts and proteins, which were both downstream consequences of reduced lipoprotein endocytosis. To elucidate which APP fragments regulate cholesterol homeostasis and examine whether familial AD mutations in APP affect lipoprotein metabolism, we analyzed an isogenic allelic series harboring the APP Swedish and APP V717F variants. Only astrocytes homozygous for the APP Swedish (APP Swe/Swe ) mutation, which had reduced full-length APP (FL APP) due to increased β-secretase cleavage, recapitulated the APP-KO phenotypes. Astrocytic internalization of amyloid-β (Aβ), another ligand for low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors, was also impaired in APP-KO and APP Swe/Swe astrocytes. Finally, impairing cleavage of FL APP through β-secretase inhibition in APP Swe/Swe astrocytes reversed the LDL and Aβ endocytosis defects. In conclusion, FL APP is involved in the endocytosis of LDL receptor ligands and required for proper cholesterol homeostasis and Aβ clearance in human astrocytes. Published under license by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  9. Nonproductive human immunodeficiency virus type 1 infection of human fetal astrocytes: independence from CD4 and major chemokine receptors.

    PubMed

    Sabri, F; Tresoldi, E; Di Stefano, M; Polo, S; Monaco, M C; Verani, A; Fiore, J R; Lusso, P; Major, E; Chiodi, F; Scarlatti, G

    1999-11-25

    Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection of the brain is associated with neurological manifestations both in adults and in children. The primary target for HIV-1 infection in the brain is the microglia, but astrocytes can also be infected. We tested 26 primary HIV-1 isolates for their capacity to infect human fetal astrocytes in culture. Eight of these isolates, independent of their biological phenotype and chemokine receptor usage, were able to infect astrocytes. Although no sustained viral replication could be demonstrated, the virus was recovered by coculture with receptive cells such as macrophages or on stimulation with interleukin-1beta. To gain knowledge into the molecular events that regulate attachment and penetration of HIV-1 in astrocytes, we investigated the expression of several chemokine receptors. Fluorocytometry and calcium-mobilization assay did not provide evidence of expression of any of the major HIV-1 coreceptors, including CXCR4, CCR5, CCR3, and CCR2b, as well as the CD4 molecule on the cell surface of human fetal astrocytes. However, mRNA transcripts for CXCR4, CCR5, Bonzo/STRL33/TYMSTR, and APJ were detected by RT-PCR. Furthermore, infection of astrocytes by HIV-1 isolates with different chemokine receptor usage was not inhibited by the chemokines SDF-1beta, RANTES, MIP-1beta, or MCP-1 or by antibodies directed against the third variable region or the CD4 binding site of gp120. These data show that astrocytes can be infected by primary HIV-1 isolates via a mechanism independent of CD4 or major chemokine receptors. Furthermore, astrocytes are potential carriers of latent HIV-1 and on activation may be implicated in spreading the infection to other neighbouring cells, such as microglia or macrophages. Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

  10. Freshly dissociated mature hippocampal astrocytes exhibit passive membrane conductance and low membrane resistance similarly to syncytial coupled astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Du, Yixing; Ma, Baofeng; Kiyoshi, Conrad M.; Alford, Catherine C.; Wang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Mature astrocytes exhibit a linear current-to-voltage K+ membrane conductance (passive conductance) and an extremely low membrane resistance (Rm) in situ. The combination of these electrophysiological characteristics establishes a highly negative and stable membrane potential that is essential for basic functions, such as K+ spatial buffering and neurotransmitter uptake. However, astrocytes are coupled extensively in situ. It remains to be determined whether the observed passive behavior and low Rm are attributable to the intrinsic properties of membrane ion channels or to gap junction coupling in functionally mature astrocytes. In the present study, freshly dissociated hippocampal tissues were used as a new model to examine this basic question in young adult animals. The morphologically intact single astrocytes could be reliably dissociated from animals postnatal day 21 and older. At this animal age, dissociated single astrocytes exhibit passive conductance and resting membrane potential similar to those exhibited by astrocytes in situ. To precisely measure the Rm from single astrocytes, dual-patch single-astrocyte recording was performed. We show that dissociated single astrocytes exhibit a low Rm similarly to syncytial coupled astrocytes. Functionally, the symmetric expression of high-K+ conductance enabled rapid change in the intracellular K+ concentrations in response to changing K+ drive force. Altogether, we demonstrate that freshly dissociated tissue preparation is a highly useful model for study of the functional expression and regulation of ion channels, receptors, and transporters in astrocytes and that passive behavior and low Rm are the intrinsic properties of mature astrocytes. PMID:25810481

  11. DJ-1 KNOCK-DOWN IMPAIRS ASTROCYTE MITOCHONDRIAL FUNCTION

    PubMed Central

    LARSEN, N. J.; AMBROSI, G.; MULLETT, S. J.; BERMAN, S. B.; HINKLE, D. A.

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunction has long been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD brain tissues show evidence for mitochondrial respiratory chain Complex I deficiency. Pharmacological inhibitors of Complex I, such as rotenone, cause experimental parkinsonism. The cytoprotective protein DJ-1, whose deletion is sufficient to cause genetic PD, is also known to have mitochondria-stabilizing properties. We have previously shown that DJ-1 is over-expressed in PD astrocytes, and that DJ-1 deficiency impairs the capacity of astrocytes to protect co-cultured neurons against rotenone. Since DJ-1 modulated, astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection against rotenone may depend upon proper astrocytic mitochondrial functioning, we hypothesized that DJ-1 deficiency would impair astrocyte mitochondrial motility, fission/fusion dynamics, membrane potential maintenance, and respiration, both at baseline and as an enhancement of rotenone-induced mitochondrial dysfunction. In astrocyte-enriched cultures, we observed that DJ-1 knock-down reduced mitochondrial motility primarily in the cellular processes of both untreated and rotenone treated cells. In these same cultures, DJ-1 knock-down did not appreciably affect mitochondrial fission, fusion, or respiration, but did enhance rotenone-induced reductions in the mitochondrial membrane potential. In neuron–astrocyte co-cultures, astrocytic DJ-1 knock-down reduced astrocyte process mitochondrial motility in untreated cells, but this effect was not maintained in the presence of rotenone. In the same co-cultures, astrocytic DJ-1 knock-down significantly reduced mitochondrial fusion in the astrocyte cell bodies, but not the processes, under the same conditions of rotenone treatment in which DJ-1 deficiency is known to impair astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection. Our studies therefore demonstrated the following new findings: (i) DJ-1 deficiency can impair astrocyte mitochondrial physiology at multiple levels, (ii) astrocyte

  12. Spatial organization of astrocytes in ferret visual cortex.

    PubMed

    López-Hidalgo, Mónica; Hoover, Walter B; Schummers, James

    2016-12-01

    Astrocytes form an intricate partnership with neural circuits to influence numerous cellular and synaptic processes. One prominent organizational feature of astrocytes is the "tiling" of the brain with non-overlapping territories. There are some documented species and brain region-specific astrocyte specializations, but the extent of astrocyte diversity and circuit specificity are still unknown. We quantitatively defined the rules that govern the spatial arrangement of astrocyte somata and territory overlap in ferret visual cortex using a combination of in vivo two-photon imaging, morphological reconstruction, immunostaining, and model simulations. We found that ferret astrocytes share, on average, half of their territory with other astrocytes. However, a specific class of astrocytes, abundant in thalamo-recipient cortical layers ("kissing" astrocytes), overlap markedly less. Together, these results demonstrate novel features of astrocyte organization indicating that different classes of astrocytes are arranged in a circuit-specific manner and that tiling does not apply universally across brain regions and species. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:3561-3576, 2016. © 2016 The Authors The Journal of Comparative Neurology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 The Authors The Journal of Comparative Neurology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Spatial organization of astrocytes in ferret visual cortex

    PubMed Central

    López‐Hidalgo, Mónica; Hoover, Walter B.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Astrocytes form an intricate partnership with neural circuits to influence numerous cellular and synaptic processes. One prominent organizational feature of astrocytes is the “tiling” of the brain with non‐overlapping territories. There are some documented species and brain region–specific astrocyte specializations, but the extent of astrocyte diversity and circuit specificity are still unknown. We quantitatively defined the rules that govern the spatial arrangement of astrocyte somata and territory overlap in ferret visual cortex using a combination of in vivo two‐photon imaging, morphological reconstruction, immunostaining, and model simulations. We found that ferret astrocytes share, on average, half of their territory with other astrocytes. However, a specific class of astrocytes, abundant in thalamo‐recipient cortical layers (“kissing” astrocytes), overlap markedly less. Together, these results demonstrate novel features of astrocyte organization indicating that different classes of astrocytes are arranged in a circuit‐specific manner and that tiling does not apply universally across brain regions and species. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:3561–3576, 2016. © 2016 The Authors The Journal of Comparative Neurology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27072916

  14. Adrenoceptors in Brain: Cellular Gene Expression and Effects on Astrocytic Metabolism and [Ca2+]i

    PubMed Central

    Hertz, Leif; Lovatt, Ditte; Goldman, Steven A.; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2010-01-01

    Recent in vivo studies have established astrocytes as a major target for locus coeruleus activation (Bekar et al., Cereb. Cortex 18, 2789–2795), renewing interest in cell culture studies on noradrenergic effects on astrocytes in primary cultures and calling for additional information about the expression of adrenoceptor subtypes on different types of brain cells. In the present communication, mRNA expression of α1-, α2- and β-adrenergic receptors and their subtypes was determined in freshly-isolated, cell marker-defined populations of astrocytes, NG2-positive cells, microglia, endothelial cells, and Thy1-positive neurons (mainly glutamatergic projection neurons) in murine cerebral cortex. Immediately after dissection of frontal, parietal and occipital cortex of 10–12-week-old transgenic mice, which combined each cell-type marker with a specific fluorescent signal, the tissue was digested, triturated and centrifuged, yielding a solution of dissociated cells of all types, which were separated by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). mRNA expression in each cell fraction was determined by microarray analysis. α1A-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes and NG2-positive cells, but absent in other cell types, and α1B-receptors were not expressed in any cell population. Among α2-receptors only α2A-receptors were expressed, unequivocally in astrocytes and NG-positive cells, tentatively in microglia and questionably in Thy1-positive neurons and endothelial cells. β1-Receptors were unequivocally expressed in astrocytes, tentatively in microglia, and questionably in neurons and endothelial cells, whereas β2-adrenergic receptors showed tentative expression in neurons and astrocytes and unequivocal expression in other cell types. This distribution was supported by immunochemical data and its relevance established by previous studies in well-differentiated primary cultures of mouse astrocytes, showing that stimulation of α2-adrenoceptors

  15. Role of astrocytes in reproduction and neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Mahesh, Virendra B; Dhandapani, Krishnan M; Brann, Darrell W

    2006-02-26

    Hypothalamic astrocytes secrete TGF-beta and 3 alpha,5 alpha-tetrahydro progesterone (3 alpha,5 alpha-THP) in culture. When the astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) was incubated with the hypothalamic cell line GT1-7, it resulted in the secretion of GnRH. Immunoneutralization with TGF-beta antibody or ultra-filteration with a 10 kDa cut off filter resulted in attenuation of the GnRH releasing ability of ACM, indicating that TGF-beta was a major factor involved with GnRH release. Treatment with estrogens increases TGF-beta secretion. These observations indicate a significant role of astrocytes in GnRH secretion. Serum-deprivation results in the death of GT1-7 neurons in culture and addition of ACM or TGF-beta to the culture, attenuates cell death. The mechanism of protection from cell death appears to involve phosphorylation of MKK4, JNK, c-Jun(Ser63), and enhancement of AP-1 binding. Co-administration of JNK inhibitors, but not MEK inhibitors attenuated ACM or TGF-beta-induced c-Jun(Ser63) phosphorylation and their neuroprotective effects. These studies suggest that astrocytes can protect neurons, at least in part, by the release of TGF-beta and activation of a c-Jun/AP-1 protective pathway.

  16. Dysbalance of Astrocyte Calcium under Hyperammonemic Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Haack, Nicole; Dublin, Pavel; Rose, Christine R.

    2014-01-01

    Increased brain ammonium (NH4 +/NH3) plays a central role in the manifestation of hepatic encephalopathy (HE), a complex syndrome associated with neurological and psychiatric alterations, which is primarily a disorder of astrocytes. Here, we analysed the influence of NH4 +/NH3 on the calcium concentration of astrocytes in situ and studied the underlying mechanisms of NH4 +/NH3-evoked calcium changes, employing fluorescence imaging with Fura-2 in acute tissue slices derived from different regions of the mouse brain. In the hippocampal stratum radiatum, perfusion with 5 mM NH4 +/NH3 for 30 minutes caused a transient calcium increase in about 40% of astrocytes lasting about 10 minutes. Furthermore, the vast majority of astrocytes (∼90%) experienced a persistent calcium increase by ∼50 nM. This persistent increase was already evoked at concentrations of 1–2 mM NH4 +/NH3, developed within 10–20 minutes and was maintained as long as the NH4 +/NH3 was present. Qualitatively similar changes were observed in astrocytes of different neocortical regions as well as in cerebellar Bergmann glia. Inhibition of glutamine synthetase resulted in significantly larger calcium increases in response to NH4 +/NH3, indicating that glutamine accumulation was not a primary cause. Calcium increases were not mimicked by changes in intracellular pH. Pharmacological inhibition of voltage-gated sodium channels, sodium-potassium-chloride-cotransporters (NKCC), the reverse mode of sodium/calcium exchange (NCX), AMPA- or mGluR5-receptors did not dampen NH4 +/NH3-induced calcium increases. They were, however, significantly reduced by inhibition of NMDA receptors and depletion of intracellular calcium stores. Taken together, our measurements show that sustained exposure to NH4 +/NH3 causes a sustained increase in intracellular calcium in astrocytes in situ, which is partly dependent on NMDA receptor activation and on release of calcium from intracellular stores. Our study furthermore suggests

  17. Obesity induces functional astrocytic leptin receptors in hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Hsuchou, Hung; He, Yi; Kastin, Abba J.; Tu, Hong; Markadakis, Emily N.; Rogers, Richard C.; Fossier, Paul B.

    2009-01-01

    The possible role of astrocytes in the regulation of feeding has been overlooked. It is well-established that the endothelial cells constituting the blood–brain barrier transport leptin from blood to brain and that hypothalamic neurons respond to leptin to induce anorexic signaling. However, few studies have addressed the role of astrocytes in either leptin transport or cellular activation. We recently showed that the obese agouti viable yellow mouse has prominent astrocytic expression of the leptin receptor. In this study, we test the hypothesis that diet-induced obesity increases astrocytic leptin receptor expression and function in the hypothalamus. Double-labelling immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopic analysis showed that all astrocytes in the hypothalamus express leptin receptors. In adult obese mice, 2 months after being placed on a high-fat diet, there was a striking increase of leptin receptor (+) astrocytes, most prominent in the dorsomedial hypothalamus and arcuate nucleus. Agouti viable yellow mice with their adult-onset obesity showed similar changes, but the increase of leptin receptor (+) astrocytes was barely seen in ob/ob or db/db mice with their early-onset obesity and defective leptin systems. The marked leptin receptor protein expression in the astrocytes, shown with several antibodies against different receptor epitopes, was supported by RT–PCR detection of leptin receptor-a and -b mRNAs in primary hypothalamic astrocytes. Unexpectedly, the protein expression of GFAP, a marker of astrocytes, was also increased in adult-onset obesity. Real-time confocal imaging showed that leptin caused a robust increase of calcium signalling in primary astrocytes from the hypothalamus, confirming their functionality. The results indicate that metabolic changes in obese mice can rapidly alter leptin receptor expression and astrocytic activity, and that leptin receptor is responsible for leptin-induced calcium signalling in astrocytes. This novel and

  18. Efficacy, tolerability, and retention rates of zonisamide in older adult patients with focal-onset epilepsy: Experiences from two tertiary epilepsy centers.

    PubMed

    Doğan, Ebru Apaydın; Genç, Emine; Genç, Bülent Oğuz; Erdoğan, Çağla

    2017-11-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy, tolerability, and retention rates for zonisamide (ZNS) in older adult patients with focal-onset epilepsy. Chart reviews of patients aged 60years and older with focal-onset epilepsy treated with ZNS in two tertiary epilepsy centers were analyzed retrospectively. Eighty-five patients (41 males, 44 females) aged over 60years (range: 60-81) with focal-onset epilepsy treated with ZNS were identified; 55.3% of the patients (n=47) were on monotherapy. The median and average doses of ZNS doses were 200mg/day (range: 100-400) and 212.9±84.2mg/day, respectively. With ZNS treatment, 67.1% of the patients (n=57) were seizure-free for a median of 28months (range: 10-56) whereas 20% (n=17) of the patients had seizures that were unresponsive to ZNS treatment. Best seizure control was achieved in patients with poststroke epilepsy; seizure freedom was 80% in this subgroup. Overall retention rate was found to be 83.5%. There was no significant relation between receiving poly- or monotherapy and discontinuation of ZNS (p=0.18). Thirty-two of the patients (37.6%) lost weight. Median weight loss was 8kg (range: 2-16). There was no significant correlation between weight loss and the administered doses of ZNS (r=0.34; p=0.12). Despite limitations due to the retrospective design of the study, the results show that ZNS is a well-retained drug with high efficacy in older adult patients with epilepsy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Disrupting astrocyte-neuron lactate transfer persistently reduces conditioned responses to cocaine.

    PubMed

    Boury-Jamot, B; Carrard, A; Martin, J L; Halfon, O; Magistretti, P J; Boutrel, B

    2016-08-01

    A central problem in the treatment of drug addiction is the high risk of relapse often precipitated by drug-associated cues. The transfer of glycogen-derived lactate from astrocytes to neurons is required for long-term memory. Whereas blockade of drug memory reconsolidation represents a potential therapeutic strategy, the role of astrocyte-neuron lactate transport in long-term conditioning has received little attention. By infusing an inhibitor of glycogen phosphorylase into the basolateral amygdala of rats, we report that disruption of astrocyte-derived lactate not only transiently impaired the acquisition of a cocaine-induced conditioned place preference but also persistently disrupted an established conditioning. The drug memory was rescued by L-Lactate co-administration through a mechanism requiring the synaptic plasticity-related transcription factor Zif268 and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signalling pathway but not the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf). The long-term amnesia induced by glycogenolysis inhibition and the concomitant decreased expression of phospho-ERK were both restored with L-Lactate co-administration. These findings reveal a critical role for astrocyte-derived lactate in positive memory formation and highlight a novel amygdala-dependent reconsolidation process, whose disruption may offer a novel therapeutic target to reduce the long-lasting conditioned responses to cocaine.

  20. Transcriptional Mechanisms of Proneural Factors and REST in Regulating Neuronal Reprogramming of Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Masserdotti, Giacomo; Gillotin, Sébastien; Sutor, Bernd; Drechsel, Daniela; Irmler, Martin; Jørgensen, Helle F.; Sass, Steffen; Theis, Fabian J.; Beckers, Johannes; Berninger, Benedikt; Guillemot, François; Götz, Magdalena

    2015-01-01

    Summary Direct lineage reprogramming induces dramatic shifts in cellular identity, employing poorly understood mechanisms. Recently, we demonstrated that expression of Neurog2 or Ascl1 in postnatal mouse astrocytes generates glutamatergic or GABAergic neurons. Here, we take advantage of this model to study dynamics of neuronal cell fate acquisition at the transcriptional level. We found that Neurog2 and Ascl1 rapidly elicited distinct neurogenic programs with only a small subset of shared target genes. Within this subset, only NeuroD4 could by itself induce neuronal reprogramming in both mouse and human astrocytes, while co-expression with Insm1 was required for glutamatergic maturation. Cultured astrocytes gradually became refractory to reprogramming, in part by the repressor REST preventing Neurog2 from binding to the NeuroD4 promoter. Notably, in astrocytes refractory to Neurog2 activation, the underlying neurogenic program remained amenable to reprogramming by exogenous NeuroD4. Our findings support a model of temporal hierarchy for cell fate change during neuronal reprogramming. PMID:26119235

  1. Interdependence of laminin-mediated clustering of lipid rafts and the dystrophin complex in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Noël, Geoffroy; Tham, Daniel Kai Long; Moukhles, Hakima

    2009-07-17

    Astrocyte endfeet surrounding blood vessels are active domains involved in water and potassium ion transport crucial to the maintenance of water and potassium ion homeostasis in brain. A growing body of evidence points to a role for dystroglycan and its interaction with perivascular laminin in the targeting of the dystrophin complex and the water-permeable channel, aquaporin 4 (AQP4), at astrocyte endfeet. However, the mechanisms underlying such compartmentalization remain poorly understood. In the present study we found that AQP4 resided in Triton X-100-insoluble fraction, whereas dystroglycan was recovered in the soluble fraction in astrocytes. Cholesterol depletion resulted in the translocation of a pool of AQP4 to the soluble fraction indicating that its distribution is indeed associated with cholesterol-rich membrane domains. Upon laminin treatment AQP4 and the dystrophin complex, including dystroglycan, reorganized into laminin-associated clusters enriched for the lipid raft markers GM1 and flotillin-1 but not caveolin-1. Reduced diffusion rates of GM1 in the laminin-induced clusters were indicative of the reorganization of raft components in these domains. In addition, both cholesterol depletion and dystroglycan silencing reduced the number and area of laminin-induced clusters of GM1, AQP4, and dystroglycan. These findings demonstrate the interdependence between laminin binding to dystroglycan and GM1-containing lipid raft reorganization and provide novel insight into the dystrophin complex regulation of AQP4 polarization in astrocytes.

  2. Intrinsic Astrocyte Heterogeneity Influences Tumor Growth in Glioma Mouse Models.

    PubMed

    Irvin, David M; McNeill, Robert S; Bash, Ryan E; Miller, C Ryan

    2017-01-01

    The influence of cellular origin on glioma pathogenesis remains elusive. We previously showed that mutations inactivating Rb and Pten and activating Kras transform astrocytes and induce tumorigenesis throughout the adult mouse brain. However, it remained unclear whether astrocyte subpopulations were susceptible to these mutations. We therefore used genetic lineage tracing and fate mapping in adult conditional, inducible genetically engineered mice to monitor transformation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and glutamate aspartate transporter (GLAST) astrocytes and immunofluorescence to monitor cellular composition of the tumor microenvironment over time. Because considerable regional heterogeneity exists among astrocytes, we also examined the influence of brain region on tumor growth. GFAP astrocyte transformation induced uniformly rapid, regionally independent tumor growth, but transformation of GLAST astrocytes induced slowly growing tumors with significant regional bias. Transformed GLAST astrocytes had reduced proliferative response in culture and in vivo and malignant progression was delayed in these tumors. Recruited glial cells, including proliferating astrocytes, oligodendrocyte progenitors and microglia, were the majority of GLAST, but not GFAP astrocyte-derived tumors and their abundance dynamically changed over time. These results suggest that intrinsic astrocyte heterogeneity, and perhaps regional brain microenvironment, significantly contributes to glioma pathogenesis. © 2016 International Society of Neuropathology.

  3. Hippocampal Astrocyte Cultures from Adult and Aged Rats Reproduce Changes in Glial Functionality Observed in the Aging Brain.

    PubMed

    Bellaver, Bruna; Souza, Débora Guerini; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2017-05-01

    B), heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), were also changed in adult and aged astrocytes and are probably related to the changes observed in senescence marker, glutamatergic metabolism, mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative/nitrosative stress, antioxidant defenses, inflammatory response, and trophic factors release. Together, our results reinforce the role of hippocampal astrocytes as a target for understanding the mechanisms involved in aging and provide an innovative tool for studies of astrocyte roles in physiological and pathological aging brain.

  4. Interactions between Sirt1 and MAPKs regulate astrocyte activation induced by brain injury in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Li, Dan; Liu, Nan; Zhao, Hai-Hua; Zhang, Xu; Kawano, Hitoshi; Liu, Lu; Zhao, Liang; Li, Hong-Peng

    2017-03-29

    Astrocyte activation is a hallmark of traumatic brain injury resulting in neurological dysfunction or death for an overproduction of inflammatory cytokines and glial scar formation. Both the silent mating type information (Sirt1) expression and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signal pathway activation represent a promising therapeutic target for several models of neurodegenerative diseases. We investigated the potential effects of Sirt1 upregulation and MAPK pathway pharmacological inhibition on astrocyte activation in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, we attempted to confirm the underlying interactions between Sirt1 and MAPK pathways in astrocyte activation after brain injury. The present study employs an interleukin-1β (IL-1β) stimulated primary cortical astrocyte model in vitro and a nigrostriatal pathway injury model in vivo to mimic the astrocyte activation induced by traumatic brain injury. The activation of GFAP, Sirt1, and MAPK pathways were detected by Western blot; astrocyte morphological hypertrophy was assessed using immunofluorescence staining; in order to explore the neuroprotective effect of regulation Sirt1 expression and MAPK pathway activation, the motor and neurological function tests were assessed after injury. GFAP level and morphological hypertrophy of astrocytes are elevated after injury in vitro or in vivo. Furthermore, the expressions of phosphorylated extracellular regulated protein kinases (p-ERK), phosphorylated c-Jun N-terminal kinase (p-JNK), and phosphorylated p38 activation (p-p38) are upregulated, but the Sirt1 expression is downregulated. Overexpression of Sirt1 significantly increases the p-ERK expression and reduces the p-JNK and p-p38 expressions. Inhibition of ERK, JNK, or p38 activation respectively with their inhibitors significantly elevated the Sirt1 expression and attenuated the astrocyte activation. Both the overproduction of Sirt1 and inhibition of ERK, JNK, or p38 activation can alleviate the astrocyte activation

  5. Rat astrocytes are more supportive for mouse OPC self-renewal than mouse astrocytes in culture.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Xuejun; Xie, Binghua; Qi, Jiajun; Zhao, Xiaofeng; Zhang, Zunyi; Qiu, Mengsheng; Yang, Junlin

    2017-09-01

    Mouse primary oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) are increasingly used to study the molecular mechanisms underlying the phenotype changes in oligodendrocyte differentiation and axonal myelination observed in transgenic or mutant mouse models. However, mouse OPCs are much more difficult to be isolated by the simple dissociation culture of brain tissues than their rat counterparts. To date, the mechanisms underlying the species difference in OPC preparation remain obscure. In this study, we showed that astrocytes from rats have a stronger effect than those from mouse in promoting OPC proliferation and survival in vitro. Mouse astrocytes displayed significantly weaker viability in culture and reduced potential in maintaining OPC self-renewal, as confirmed by culturing OPCs with conditioned media from rat or mouse astrocytes. These results explained the reason for why stratified cultures of OPCs and astrocytes are difficult to be achieved in mouse CNS tissues. Based on these findings, we adopted inactivated rat astrocytes as feeder cells to support the self-renewal of mouse cortical OPCs and preparation of high-purity mouse OPCs. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 77: 907-916, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Ginkgolide K promotes astrocyte proliferation and migration after oxygen-glucose deprivation via inducing protective autophagy through the AMPK/mTOR/ULK1 signaling pathway.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Miao, Ju-Mei

    2018-05-19

    Ischemic stroke is the leading cause of death around the world. Ginkgolide K (GK) has been used to treat ischemic stroke due to its neuroprotective potential. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the neuroprotective effect of GK in ischemic stroke is still almost blank. In this study, astrocytes were divided into four groups: control group, oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) group, OGD + GK group and OGD + GK + Compound C (CC) group. The viability and proliferation of astrocytes were examined by Cell Counting Kit-8 assay and 5-ethynyl-20-deoxyuridine (EdU) assay, respectively. Transwell migration and wound scratch assays were conducted to evaluate astrocyte migration. The protein expression in astrocytes were determined by western blot assay. We found that GK pretreatment promoted astrocyte proliferation and migration after OGD as shown by the increase in the viability of astrocytes, glial fibrillary acidic protein level, the number of EdU positive cells and migrated cells, and the migration distance. GK pretreatment induced autophagy after OGD, as indicated by upregulation of autophagy-related protein 7, Beclin-1 protein and increase of microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3)-II/LC3-I, and downregulation of p62 protein. Moreover, GK pretreatment activated the AMP activated protein kinase (AMPK)/mammalian target of rapamycin (m-TOR)/ULK1 pathway in astrocytes following OGD. Notably, CC treatment blocked the promotory effect of GK on astrocyte proliferation and migration after OGD. Collectively, GK promoted astrocyte proliferation and migration after OGD via inducing protective autophagy through the AMPK/mTOR/ULK1 signaling pathway. Our findings suggested that GK might be a potential agent for cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  7. Astrocyte-neuronal interactions in epileptogenesis.

    PubMed

    Hadera, Mussie Ghezu; Eloqayli, Haytham; Jaradat, Saied; Nehlig, Astrid; Sonnewald, Ursula

    2015-07-01

    Pentylenetetrazol, kainic acid, or pilocarpine can be used to induce seizures in animal models of epilepsy. The present Review describes disturbances in astrocyte-neuron interactions in the acute, latent, and chronic phases analyzed by magnetic resonance spectroscopy of brain tissue extracts from rats injected with [1-(13)C]glucose and [1,2-(13)C]acetate. The most consistent change after onset of seizures was the decrease in (13)C labeling of glutamate (GLU) from [1-(13) C]glucose regardless of brain area, severity, or duration of the period with seizures and toxin used. In most cases this decrease was accompanied by a reduction in glutamine (GLN) labeling from [1-(13)C]glucose, presumably as a direct consequence of the reduction in labeling of GLU and the GLU-GLN cycle. Amounts of GLN were never changed. Reduction in the content of N-acetyl aspartate (NAA) was first detectable some time after status epilepticus but before the occurrence of spontaneous seizures. This decrease can be an indication of neuronal death and/or mitochondrial impairment and might indicate beginning gliosis. It is known that gliosis occurs in the chronic phase of temporal lobe epilepsy in hippocampus, but astrocyte metabolism appears normal in this phase, indicating that the gliotic astrocytes have a somewhat reduced metabolism per volume. A decrease in (13)C labeling of GLU from [1-(13)C]glucose is a very sensitive measure for the onset of epileptogenesis, whereas reduction of NAA is first detectable later. In the chronic phases of the hippocampal formation, astrocyte metabolism is upregulated given that the number of neurons is reduced. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Neuron-astrocyte signaling is preserved in the aging brain.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Gonzalo, Marta; Martin-Fernandez, Mario; Martínez-Murillo, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Jamison, Stephanie; Fernandez, Ana P; Serrano, Julia; Calero, Pilar; Futch, Hunter S; Corpas, Rubén; Sanfeliu, Coral; Perea, Gertrudis; Araque, Alfonso

    2017-04-01

    Astrocytes play crucial roles in brain homeostasis and are emerging as regulatory elements of neuronal and synaptic physiology by responding to neurotransmitters with Ca 2+ elevations and releasing gliotransmitters that activate neuronal receptors. Aging involves neuronal and astrocytic alterations, being considered risk factor for neurodegenerative diseases. Most evidence of the astrocyte-neuron signaling is derived from studies with young animals; however, the features of astrocyte-neuron signaling in adult and aging brain remain largely unknown. We have investigated the existence and properties of astrocyte-neuron signaling in physiologically and pathologically aging mouse hippocampal and cortical slices at different lifetime points (0.5 to 20 month-old animals). We found that astrocytes preserved their ability to express spontaneous and neurotransmitter-dependent intracellular Ca 2+ signals from juvenile to aging brains. Likewise, resting levels of gliotransmission, assessed by neuronal NMDAR activation by glutamate released from astrocytes, were largely preserved with similar properties in all tested age groups, but DHPG-induced gliotransmission was reduced in aged mice. In contrast, gliotransmission was enhanced in the APP/PS1 mouse model of Alzheimer's disease, indicating a dysregulation of astrocyte-neuron signaling in pathological conditions. Disruption of the astrocytic IP 3 R2 mediated-signaling, which is required for neurotransmitter-induced astrocyte Ca 2+ signals and gliotransmission, boosted the progression of amyloid plaque deposits and synaptic plasticity impairments in APP/PS1 mice at early stages of the disease. Therefore, astrocyte-neuron interaction is a fundamental signaling, largely conserved in the adult and aging brain of healthy animals, but it is altered in Alzheimer's disease, suggesting that dysfunctions of astrocyte Ca 2+ physiology may contribute to this neurodegenerative disease. GLIA 2017 GLIA 2017;65:569-580. © 2017 Wiley

  9. Development of a method for the purification and culture of rodent astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Foo, Lynette C; Allen, Nicola J; Bushong, Eric A; Ventura, P Britten; Chung, Won-Suk; Zhou, Lu; Cahoy, John D; Daneman, Richard; Zong, Hui; Ellisman, Mark H; Barres, Ben A

    2011-09-08

    The inability to purify and culture astrocytes has long hindered studies of their function. Whereas astrocyte progenitor cells can be cultured from neonatal brain, culture of mature astrocytes from postnatal brain has not been possible. Here, we report a new method to prospectively purify astrocytes by immunopanning. These astrocytes undergo apoptosis in culture, but vascular cells and HBEGF promote their survival in serum-free culture. We found that some developing astrocytes normally undergo apoptosis in vivo and that the vast majority of astrocytes contact blood vessels, suggesting that astrocytes are matched to blood vessels by competing for vascular-derived trophic factors such as HBEGF. Compared to traditional astrocyte cultures, the gene profiles of the cultured purified postnatal astrocytes much more closely resemble those of in vivo astrocytes. Although these astrocytes strongly promote synapse formation and function, they do not secrete glutamate in response to stimulation. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Development of a Novel Method for the Purification and Culture of Rodent Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Foo, Lynette C.; Allen, Nicola J.; Bushong, Eric A.; Ventura, P. Britten; Chung, Won-Suk; Zhou, Lu; Cahoy, John D.; Daneman, Richard; Zong, Hui; Ellisman, Mark H.; Barres, Ben A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary The inability to purify and culture astrocytes has long hindered studies of their function. Whereas astrocyte progenitor cells can be cultured from neonatal brain, culture of mature astrocytes from postnatal brain has not been possible. Here we report a new method to prospectively purify astrocytes by immunopanning. These astrocytes undergo apoptosis in culture, but vascular cells and HBEGF promote their survival in serum-free culture. We found that some developing astrocytes normally undergo apoptosis in vivo and that the vast majority of astrocytes contact blood vessels, suggesting that astrocytes are matched to blood vessels by competing for vascular-derived trophic factors such as HBEGF. Compared to traditional astrocyte cultures, the gene profiles of the cultured purified postnatal astrocytes much more closely resemble those of in vivo astrocytes. Although these astrocytes strongly promote synapse formation and function, they do not secrete glutamate in response to stimulation. PMID:21903074

  11. A neuroprotective astrocyte state is induced by neuronal signal EphB1 but fails in ALS models.

    PubMed

    Tyzack, Giulia E; Hall, Claire E; Sibley, Christopher R; Cymes, Tomasz; Forostyak, Serhiy; Carlino, Giulia; Meyer, Ione F; Schiavo, Giampietro; Zhang, Su-Chun; Gibbons, George M; Newcombe, Jia; Patani, Rickie; Lakatos, András

    2017-10-27

    Astrocyte responses to neuronal injury may be beneficial or detrimental to neuronal recovery, but the mechanisms that determine these different responses are poorly understood. Here we show that ephrin type-B receptor 1 (EphB1) is upregulated in injured motor neurons, which in turn can activate astrocytes through ephrin-B1-mediated stimulation of signal transducer and activator of transcription-3 (STAT3). Transcriptional analysis shows that EphB1 induces a protective and anti-inflammatory signature in astrocytes, partially linked to the STAT3 network. This is distinct from the response evoked by interleukin (IL)-6 that is known to induce both pro inflammatory and anti-inflammatory processes. Finally, we demonstrate that the EphB1-ephrin-B1 pathway is disrupted in human stem cell derived astrocyte and mouse models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Our work identifies an early neuronal help-me signal that activates a neuroprotective astrocytic response, which fails in ALS, and therefore represents an attractive therapeutic target.

  12. Differential signaling mechanism for HIV-1 Nef-mediated production of IL-6 and IL-8 in human astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xun; Kumar, Anil

    2015-06-15

    Variety of HIV-1 viral proteins including HIV-1 Nef are known to activate astrocytes and microglia in the brain and cause the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which is thought to be one of the mechanisms leading to HIV-1- mediated neurotoxicity. IL-6 and IL-8 have been found in the CSF of patients with HIV-1 associated dementia (HAD), suggesting that they might play important roles in HIV-1 neuropathology. In the present study we examined the effects of HIV-1 Nef on IL-6 and IL-8 induction in astrocytes. The results demonstrate that both IL-6 and IL-8 are significantly induced in HIV-1 Nef-transfected SVGA astrocytes and HIV-1 Nef-treated primary fetal astrocytes. We also determined the molecular mechanisms responsible for the HIV-1 Nef-induced increased IL-6 and IL-8 by using chemical inhibitors and siRNAs against PI3K/Akt/PKC, p38 MAPK, NF-κB, CEBP and AP-1. Our results clearly demonstrate that the PI3K/PKC, p38 MAPK, NF-κB and AP-1 pathways are involved in HIV-1 Nef-induced IL-6 production in astrocytes, while PI3K/PKC and NF-κB pathways are involved in HIV-1 Nef-induced IL-8 production. These results offer new potential targets to develop therapeutic strategy for treatment of HIV-1 associated neurological disorders, prevalent in > 40% of individuals infected with HIV-1.

  13. Notch1–STAT3–ETBR signaling axis controls reactive astrocyte proliferation after brain injury

    PubMed Central

    LeComte, Matthew D.; Shimada, Issei S.; Sherwin, Casey; Spees, Jeffrey L.

    2015-01-01

    Defining the signaling network that controls reactive astrogliosis may provide novel treatment targets for patients with diverse CNS injuries and pathologies. We report that the radial glial cell antigen RC2 identifies the majority of proliferating glial fibrillary acidic protein-positive (GFAP+) reactive astrocytes after stroke. These cells highly expressed endothelin receptor type B (ETBR) and Jagged1, a Notch1 receptor ligand. To study signaling in adult reactive astrocytes, we developed a model based on reactive astrocyte-derived neural stem cells isolated from GFAP-CreER-Notch1 conditional knockout (cKO) mice. By loss- and gain-of-function studies and promoter activity assays, we found that Jagged1/Notch1 signaling increased ETBR expression indirectly by raising the level of phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), a previously unidentified EDNRB transcriptional activator. Similar to inducible transgenic GFAP-CreER-Notch1-cKO mice, GFAP-CreER-ETBR-cKO mice exhibited a defect in reactive astrocyte proliferation after cerebral ischemia. Our results indicate that the Notch1–STAT3–ETBR axis connects a signaling network that promotes reactive astrocyte proliferation after brain injury. PMID:26124113

  14. Elusive roles for reactive astrocytes in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Ben Haim, Lucile; Carrillo-de Sauvage, Maria-Angeles; Ceyzériat, Kelly; Escartin, Carole

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes play crucial roles in the brain and are involved in the neuroinflammatory response. They become reactive in response to virtually all pathological situations in the brain such as axotomy, ischemia, infection, and neurodegenerative diseases (ND). Astrocyte reactivity was originally characterized by morphological changes (hypertrophy, remodeling of processes) and the overexpression of the intermediate filament glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). However, it is unclear how the normal supportive functions of astrocytes are altered by their reactive state. In ND, in which neuronal dysfunction and astrocyte reactivity take place over several years or decades, the issue is even more complex and highly debated, with several conflicting reports published recently. In this review, we discuss studies addressing the contribution of reactive astrocytes to ND. We describe the molecular triggers leading to astrocyte reactivity during ND, examine how some key astrocyte functions may be enhanced or altered during the disease process, and discuss how astrocyte reactivity may globally affect ND progression. Finally we will consider the anticipated developments in this important field. With this review, we aim to show that the detailed study of reactive astrocytes may open new perspectives for ND. PMID:26283915

  15. Astrocyte Kir4.1 ion channel deficits contribute to neuronal dysfunction in Huntington's disease model mice

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Xiaoping; Ao, Yan; Faas, Guido C.; Nwaobi, Sinifunanya E.; Xu, Ji; Haustein, Martin D.; Anderson, Mark A.; Mody, Istvan; Olsen, Michelle L.; Sofroniew, Michael V.; Khakh, Baljit S.

    2014-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by striatal medium spiny neuron (MSN) dysfunction, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. We explored roles for astrocytes, which display mutant huntingtin in HD patients and mouse models. We found that symptom onset in R6/2 and Q175 HD mouse models is not associated with classical astrogliosis, but is associated with decreased Kir4.1 K+ channel functional expression, leading to elevated in vivo levels of striatal extracellular K+, which increased MSN excitability in vitro. Viral delivery of Kir4.1 channels to striatal astrocytes restored Kir4.1 function, normalized extracellular K+, recovered aspects of MSN dysfunction, prolonged survival and attenuated some motor phenotypes in R6/2 mice. These findings indicate that components of altered MSN excitability in HD may be caused by heretofore unknown disturbances of astrocyte–mediated K+ homeostasis, revealing astrocytes and Kir4.1 channels as novel therapeutic targets. PMID:24686787

  16. Manganese activates the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway in rat astrocytes by modulating the expression of proteins of the Bcl-2 family.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Laura E; Juknat, A Ana; Venosa, Andrea J; Verrengia, Noemi; Kotler, Mónica L

    2008-12-01

    Manganese induces the central nervous system injury leading to manganism, by mechanisms not completely understood. Chronic exposure to manganese generates oxidative stress and induces the mitochondrial permeability transition. In the present study, we characterized apoptotic cell death mechanisms associated with manganese toxicity in rat cortical astrocytes and demonstrated that (i) Mn treatment targets the mitochondria and induces mitochondrial membrane depolarization followed by cytochrome c release to the cytoplasm, (ii) Mn induces both effector caspases 3/7 and 6 as well as PARP-1 cleavage and (iii) Mn shifts the balance of cell death/survival of Bcl-2 family proteins to favor the apoptotic demise of astrocytes. Our model system using cortical rat astrocytes treated with Mn would emerge as a good tool for investigations aimed to elucidate the role of apoptosis in manganism.

  17. Enhancing NAD+ Salvage Pathway Reverts the Toxicity of Primary Astrocytes Expressing Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-linked Mutant Superoxide Dismutase 1 (SOD1).

    PubMed

    Harlan, Benjamin A; Pehar, Mariana; Sharma, Deep R; Beeson, Gyda; Beeson, Craig C; Vargas, Marcelo R

    2016-05-13

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) participates in redox reactions and NAD(+)-dependent signaling pathways. Although the redox reactions are critical for efficient mitochondrial metabolism, they are not accompanied by any net consumption of the nucleotide. On the contrary, NAD(+)-dependent signaling processes lead to its degradation. Three distinct families of enzymes consume NAD(+) as substrate: poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases, ADP-ribosyl cyclases (CD38 and CD157), and sirtuins (SIRT1-7). Because all of the above enzymes generate nicotinamide as a byproduct, mammalian cells have evolved an NAD(+) salvage pathway capable of resynthesizing NAD(+) from nicotinamide. Overexpression of the rate-limiting enzyme in this pathway, nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, increases total and mitochondrial NAD(+) levels in astrocytes. Moreover, targeting nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase to the mitochondria also enhances NAD(+) salvage pathway in astrocytes. Supplementation with the NAD(+) precursors nicotinamide mononucleotide and nicotinamide riboside also increases NAD(+) levels in astrocytes. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is caused by the progressive degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord, brain stem, and motor cortex. Superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutations account for up to 20% of familial ALS and 1-2% of apparently sporadic ALS cases. Primary astrocytes isolated from mutant human superoxide dismutase 1-overexpressing mice as well as human post-mortem ALS spinal cord-derived astrocytes induce motor neuron death in co-culture. Increasing total and mitochondrial NAD(+) content in ALS astrocytes increases oxidative stress resistance and reverts their toxicity toward co-cultured motor neurons. Taken together, our results suggest that enhancing the NAD(+) salvage pathway in astrocytes could be a potential therapeutic target to prevent astrocyte-mediated motor neuron death in ALS. © 2016 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular

  18. Enhancing NAD+ Salvage Pathway Reverts the Toxicity of Primary Astrocytes Expressing Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-linked Mutant Superoxide Dismutase 1 (SOD1)*

    PubMed Central

    Harlan, Benjamin A.; Pehar, Mariana; Sharma, Deep R.; Beeson, Gyda; Beeson, Craig C.; Vargas, Marcelo R.

    2016-01-01

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) participates in redox reactions and NAD+-dependent signaling pathways. Although the redox reactions are critical for efficient mitochondrial metabolism, they are not accompanied by any net consumption of the nucleotide. On the contrary, NAD+-dependent signaling processes lead to its degradation. Three distinct families of enzymes consume NAD+ as substrate: poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases, ADP-ribosyl cyclases (CD38 and CD157), and sirtuins (SIRT1–7). Because all of the above enzymes generate nicotinamide as a byproduct, mammalian cells have evolved an NAD+ salvage pathway capable of resynthesizing NAD+ from nicotinamide. Overexpression of the rate-limiting enzyme in this pathway, nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase, increases total and mitochondrial NAD+ levels in astrocytes. Moreover, targeting nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase to the mitochondria also enhances NAD+ salvage pathway in astrocytes. Supplementation with the NAD+ precursors nicotinamide mononucleotide and nicotinamide riboside also increases NAD+ levels in astrocytes. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is caused by the progressive degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord, brain stem, and motor cortex. Superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) mutations account for up to 20% of familial ALS and 1–2% of apparently sporadic ALS cases. Primary astrocytes isolated from mutant human superoxide dismutase 1-overexpressing mice as well as human post-mortem ALS spinal cord-derived astrocytes induce motor neuron death in co-culture. Increasing total and mitochondrial NAD+ content in ALS astrocytes increases oxidative stress resistance and reverts their toxicity toward co-cultured motor neurons. Taken together, our results suggest that enhancing the NAD+ salvage pathway in astrocytes could be a potential therapeutic target to prevent astrocyte-mediated motor neuron death in ALS. PMID:27002158

  19. DREAM-Dependent Activation of Astrocytes in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Larrodé, Pilar; Calvo, Ana Cristina; Moreno-Martínez, Laura; de la Torre, Miriam; Moreno-García, Leticia; Molina, Nora; Castiella, Tomás; Iñiguez, Cristina; Pascual, Luis Fernando; Mena, Francisco Javier Miana; Zaragoza, Pilar; Y Cajal, Santiago Ramón; Osta, Rosario

    2018-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease of unknown origin and characterized by a relentless loss of motor neurons that causes a progressive muscle weakness until death. Among the several pathogenic mechanisms that have been related to ALS, a dysregulation of calcium-buffering proteins in motor neurons of the brain and spinal cord can make these neurons more vulnerable to disease progression. Downstream regulatory element antagonist modulator (DREAM) is a neuronal calcium-binding protein that plays multiple roles in the nucleus and cytosol. The main aim of this study was focused on the characterization of DREAM and glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP) in the brain and spinal cord tissues from transgenic SOD1 G93A mice and ALS patients to unravel its potential role under neurodegenerative conditions. The DREAM and GFAP levels in the spinal cord and different brain areas from transgenic SOD1 G93A mice and ALS patients were analyzed by Western blot and immunohistochemistry. Our findings suggest that the calcium-dependent excitotoxicity progressively enhanced in the CNS in ALS could modulate the multifunctional nature of DREAM, strengthening its apoptotic way of action in both motor neurons and astrocytes, which could act as an additional factor to increase neuronal damage. The direct crosstalk between astrocytes and motor neurons can become vulnerable under neurodegenerative conditions, and DREAM could act as an additional switch to enhance motor neuron loss. Together, these findings could pave the way to further study the molecular targets of DREAM to find novel therapeutic strategies to fight ALS.

  20. MicroRNA profiling reveals new aspects of HIV neurodegeneration: caspase-6 regulates astrocyte survival.

    PubMed

    Noorbakhsh, Farshid; Ramachandran, Rithwik; Barsby, Nicola; Ellestad, Kristofor K; LeBlanc, Andrea; Dickie, Peter; Baker, Glen; Hollenberg, Morley D; Cohen, Eric A; Power, Christopher

    2010-06-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules, which are known to regulate gene expression in physiological and pathological conditions. miRNA profiling was performed using brain tissue from patients with HIV encephalitis (HIVE), a neuroinflammatory/degenerative disorder caused by HIV infection of the brain. Microarray analysis showed differential expression of multiple miRNAs in HIVE compared to control brains. Target prediction and gene ontology enrichment analysis disclosed targeting of several gene families/biological processes by differentially expressed miRNAs (DEMs), with cell death-related genes, including caspase-6, showing a bias toward down-regulated DEMs. Consistent with the miRNA data, HIVE brains exhibited higher levels of caspase-6 transcripts compared with control patients. Immunohistochemical analysis showed localization of the cleaved form of caspase-6 in astrocytes in HIVE brain sections. Exposure of cultured human primary astrocytes to HIV viral protein R (Vpr) induced p53 up-regulation, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, and caspase-6 activation followed by cell injury. Transgenic mice, expressing Vpr in microglial cells, demonstrated astrocyte apoptosis in brain, which was associated with caspase-6 activation and neurobehavioral abnormalities. Overall, these data point to previously unrecognized alterations in miRNA profile in the brain during HIV infection, which contribute to cell death through dysregulation of cell death machinery.

  1. Synapse-specific astrocyte gating of amygdala-related behavior.

    PubMed

    Martin-Fernandez, Mario; Jamison, Stephanie; Robin, Laurie M; Zhao, Zhe; Martin, Eduardo D; Aguilar, Juan; Benneyworth, Michael A; Marsicano, Giovanni; Araque, Alfonso

    2017-11-01

    The amygdala plays key roles in fear and anxiety. Studies of the amygdala have largely focused on neuronal function and connectivity. Astrocytes functionally interact with neurons, but their role in the amygdala remains largely unknown. We show that astrocytes in the medial subdivision of the central amygdala (CeM) determine the synaptic and behavioral outputs of amygdala circuits. To investigate the role of astrocytes in amygdala-related behavior and identify the underlying synaptic mechanisms, we used exogenous or endogenous signaling to selectively activate CeM astrocytes. Astrocytes depressed excitatory synapses from basolateral amygdala via A 1 adenosine receptor activation and enhanced inhibitory synapses from the lateral subdivision of the central amygdala via A 2A receptor activation. Furthermore, astrocytic activation decreased the firing rate of CeM neurons and reduced fear expression in a fear-conditioning paradigm. Therefore, we conclude that astrocyte activity determines fear responses by selectively regulating specific synapses, which indicates that animal behavior results from the coordinated activity of neurons and astrocytes.

  2. Reactive astrocytes and therapeutic potential in focal ischemic stroke

    PubMed Central

    Choudhury, Gourav Roy; Ding, Shinghua

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are specialized and the most abundant cell type in the central nervous system (CNS). They play important roles in the physiology of the brain. Astrocytes are also critically involved in many CNS disorders including focal ischemic stroke, the leading cause of brain injury and death in patients. One of the prominent pathological features of a focal ischemic stroke is reactive astrogliosis and glial scar formation. Reactive astrogliosis is accompanied with changes in morphology, proliferation and gene expression in the reactive astrocytes. This study provides an overview of the most recent advances in astrocytic Ca2+ signaling, spatial and temporal dynamics of the morphology and proliferation of reactive astrocytes as well as signaling pathways involved in the reactive astrogliosis after ischemic stroke based on results from experimental studies performed in various animal models. This review also discusses the therapeutic potential of reactive astrocytes in a focal ischemic stroke. As reactive astrocytes exhibit high plasticity, we suggest that modulation of local reactive astrocytes is a promising strategy for cell-based stroke therapy. PMID:25982835

  3. Astrocytic Activation Generates De Novo Neuronal Potentiation and Memory Enhancement.

    PubMed

    Adamsky, Adar; Kol, Adi; Kreisel, Tirzah; Doron, Adi; Ozeri-Engelhard, Nofar; Melcer, Talia; Refaeli, Ron; Horn, Henrike; Regev, Limor; Groysman, Maya; London, Michael; Goshen, Inbal

    2018-05-18

    Astrocytes respond to neuronal activity and were shown to be necessary for plasticity and memory. To test whether astrocytic activity is also sufficient to generate synaptic potentiation and enhance memory, we expressed the Gq-coupled receptor hM3Dq in CA1 astrocytes, allowing their activation by a designer drug. We discovered that astrocytic activation is not only necessary for synaptic plasticity, but also sufficient to induce NMDA-dependent de novo long-term potentiation in the hippocampus that persisted after astrocytic activation ceased. In vivo, astrocytic activation enhanced memory allocation; i.e., it increased neuronal activity in a task-specific way only when coupled with learning, but not in home-caged mice. Furthermore, astrocytic activation using either a chemogenetic or an optogenetic tool during acquisition resulted in memory recall enhancement on the following day. Conversely, directly increasing neuronal activity resulted in dramatic memory impairment. Our findings that astrocytes induce plasticity and enhance memory may have important clinical implications for cognitive augmentation treatments. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Ghrelin Regulates Glucose and Glutamate Transporters in Hypothalamic Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Fuente-Martín, Esther; García-Cáceres, Cristina; Argente-Arizón, Pilar; Díaz, Francisca; Granado, Miriam; Freire-Regatillo, Alejandra; Castro-González, David; Ceballos, María L.; Frago, Laura M.; Dickson, Suzanne L.; Argente, Jesús; Chowen, Julie A.

    2016-01-01

    Hypothalamic astrocytes can respond to metabolic signals, such as leptin and insulin, to modulate adjacent neuronal circuits and systemic metabolism. Ghrelin regulates appetite, adiposity and glucose metabolism, but little is known regarding the response of astrocytes to this orexigenic hormone. We have used both in vivo and in vitro approaches to demonstrate that acylated ghrelin (acyl-ghrelin) rapidly stimulates glutamate transporter expression and glutamate uptake by astrocytes. Moreover, acyl-ghrelin rapidly reduces glucose transporter (GLUT) 2 levels and glucose uptake by these glial cells. Glutamine synthetase and lactate dehydrogenase decrease, while glycogen phosphorylase and lactate transporters increase in response to acyl-ghrelin, suggesting a change in glutamate and glucose metabolism, as well as glycogen storage by astrocytes. These effects are partially mediated through ghrelin receptor 1A (GHSR-1A) as astrocytes do not respond equally to desacyl-ghrelin, an isoform that does not activate GHSR-1A. Moreover, primary astrocyte cultures from GHSR-1A knock-out mice do not change glutamate transporter or GLUT2 levels in response to acyl-ghrelin. Our results indicate that acyl-ghrelin may mediate part of its metabolic actions through modulation of hypothalamic astrocytes and that this effect could involve astrocyte mediated changes in local glucose and glutamate metabolism that alter the signals/nutrients reaching neighboring neurons. PMID:27026049

  5. Computational Models for Calcium-Mediated Astrocyte Functions

    PubMed Central

    Manninen, Tiina; Havela, Riikka; Linne, Marja-Leena

    2018-01-01

    The computational neuroscience field has heavily concentrated on the modeling of neuronal functions, largely ignoring other brain cells, including one type of glial cell, the astrocytes. Despite the short history of modeling astrocytic functions, we were delighted about the hundreds of models developed so far to study the role of astrocytes, most often in calcium dynamics, synchronization, information transfer, and plasticity in vitro, but also in vascular events, hyperexcitability, and homeostasis. Our goal here is to present the state-of-the-art in computational modeling of astrocytes in order to facilitate better understanding of the functions and dynamics of astrocytes in the brain. Due to the large number of models, we concentrated on a hundred models that include biophysical descriptions for calcium signaling and dynamics in astrocytes. We categorized the models into four groups: single astrocyte models, astrocyte network models, neuron-astrocyte synapse models, and neuron-astrocyte network models to ease their use in future modeling projects. We characterized the models based on which earlier models were used for building the models and which type of biological entities were described in the astrocyte models. Features of the models were compared and contrasted so that similarities and differences were more readily apparent. We discovered that most of the models were basically generated from a small set of previously published models with small variations. However, neither citations to all the previous models with similar core structure nor explanations of what was built on top of the previous models were provided, which made it possible, in some cases, to have the same models published several times without an explicit intention to make new predictions about the roles of astrocytes in brain functions. Furthermore, only a few of the models are available online which makes it difficult to reproduce the simulation results and further develop the models. Thus

  6. Computational Models for Calcium-Mediated Astrocyte Functions.

    PubMed

    Manninen, Tiina; Havela, Riikka; Linne, Marja-Leena

    2018-01-01

    The computational neuroscience field has heavily concentrated on the modeling of neuronal functions, largely ignoring other brain cells, including one type of glial cell, the astrocytes. Despite the short history of modeling astrocytic functions, we were delighted about the hundreds of models developed so far to study the role of astrocytes, most often in calcium dynamics, synchronization, information transfer, and plasticity in vitro , but also in vascular events, hyperexcitability, and homeostasis. Our goal here is to present the state-of-the-art in computational modeling of astrocytes in order to facilitate better understanding of the functions and dynamics of astrocytes in the brain. Due to the large number of models, we concentrated on a hundred models that include biophysical descriptions for calcium signaling and dynamics in astrocytes. We categorized the models into four groups: single astrocyte models, astrocyte network models, neuron-astrocyte synapse models, and neuron-astrocyte network models to ease their use in future modeling projects. We characterized the models based on which earlier models were used for building the models and which type of biological entities were described in the astrocyte models. Features of the models were compared and contrasted so that similarities and differences were more readily apparent. We discovered that most of the models were basically generated from a small set of previously published models with small variations. However, neither citations to all the previous models with similar core structure nor explanations of what was built on top of the previous models were provided, which made it possible, in some cases, to have the same models published several times without an explicit intention to make new predictions about the roles of astrocytes in brain functions. Furthermore, only a few of the models are available online which makes it difficult to reproduce the simulation results and further develop the models. Thus

  7. Astrocytic Acidosis in Hyperglycemic and Complete Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Kraig, Richard P.; Chesler, Mitchell

    2011-01-01

    Summary Nearly complete brain ischemia under normoglycemic conditions results in death of only selectively vulnerable neurons. With prior elevation of brain glucose, such injury is enhanced to include pancel1ular necrosis (i.e., infarction), perhaps because an associated, severe lactic acidosis preferentially injures astrocytes. However, no direct physiologic measurements exist to support this hypothesis. Therefore, we used microelectrodes to measure intracellular pH and passive electrical properties of cortical astrocytes as a first approach to characterizing the physiologic behavior of these cel1s during hyperglycemic and complete ischemia, conditions that produce infarction in reperfused brain. Anesthesized rats (n = 26) were made extremely hyperglycemic (blood glucose, 51.4 ± 2.8 mM) so as to create potentially the most extreme acidic conditions possible; then ischemia was induced by cardiac arrest. Two loci more acidic than the interstitial space (6.17–6.20 pH) were found. The more acidic locus [4.30 ± 0.19 (n = 5); range: 3.82–4.89] was occasional1y seen at the onset of anoxic depolarization, 3–7 min after cardiac arrest. The less acidic locus [5.30 ± 0.07 (n = 53); range 4.46–5.93)] was seen 5–46 min after cardiac arrest. A smal1 negative change in DC potential [8 ± 1 mV (n = 5); range −3 to −12 mV and 7 ± 2 mV (n = 53); range +3 to −31 mV, respectively] was always seen upon impalement of acidic loci, suggesting cellular penetration. In a separate group of five animals, electrical characteristics of these cells were specifically measured (n = 17): membrane potential was −12 ± 0.2 mV (range −3 to −24 mY), input resistance was 114 ± 16 MΩ (range 25–250 MΩ), and time constant was 4.4 ± 0.4 ms (range 3.0–7.9 ms). Injection of horseradish peroxidase into cells from either animal group uniformly stained degenerating astrocytes. These findings establish previously unrecognized properties of ischemic astrocytes that may be

  8. Involvement of astrocyte metabolic coupling in Tourette syndrome pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    de Leeuw, Christiaan; Goudriaan, Andrea; Smit, August B; Yu, Dongmei; Mathews, Carol A; Scharf, Jeremiah M; Verheijen, Mark H G; Posthuma, Danielle

    2015-11-01

    Tourette syndrome is a heritable neurodevelopmental disorder whose pathophysiology remains unknown. Recent genome-wide association studies suggest that it is a polygenic disorder influenced by many genes of small effect. We tested whether these genes cluster in cellular function by applying gene-set analysis using expert curated sets of brain-expressed genes in the current largest available Tourette syndrome genome-wide association data set, involving 1285 cases and 4964 controls. The gene sets included specific synaptic, astrocytic, oligodendrocyte and microglial functions. We report association of Tourette syndrome with a set of genes involved in astrocyte function, specifically in astrocyte carbohydrate metabolism. This association is driven primarily by a subset of 33 genes involved in glycolysis and glutamate metabolism through which astrocytes support synaptic function. Our results indicate for the first time that the process of astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling may be an important contributor to Tourette syndrome pathogenesis.

  9. Involvement of astrocyte metabolic coupling in Tourette syndrome pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    de Leeuw, Christiaan; Goudriaan, Andrea; Smit, August B; Yu, Dongmei; Mathews, Carol A; Scharf, Jeremiah M; Scharf, J M; Pauls, D L; Yu, D; Illmann, C; Osiecki, L; Neale, B M; Mathews, C A; Reus, V I; Lowe, T L; Freimer, N B; Cox, N J; Davis, L K; Rouleau, G A; Chouinard, S; Dion, Y; Girard, S; Cath, D C; Posthuma, D; Smit, J H; Heutink, P; King, R A; Fernandez, T; Leckman, J F; Sandor, P; Barr, C L; McMahon, W; Lyon, G; Leppert, M; Morgan, J; Weiss, R; Grados, M A; Singer, H; Jankovic, J; Tischfield, J A; Heiman, G A; Verheijen, Mark H G; Posthuma, Danielle

    2015-01-01

    Tourette syndrome is a heritable neurodevelopmental disorder whose pathophysiology remains unknown. Recent genome-wide association studies suggest that it is a polygenic disorder influenced by many genes of small effect. We tested whether these genes cluster in cellular function by applying gene-set analysis using expert curated sets of brain-expressed genes in the current largest available Tourette syndrome genome-wide association data set, involving 1285 cases and 4964 controls. The gene sets included specific synaptic, astrocytic, oligodendrocyte and microglial functions. We report association of Tourette syndrome with a set of genes involved in astrocyte function, specifically in astrocyte carbohydrate metabolism. This association is driven primarily by a subset of 33 genes involved in glycolysis and glutamate metabolism through which astrocytes support synaptic function. Our results indicate for the first time that the process of astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling may be an important contributor to Tourette syndrome pathogenesis. PMID:25735483

  10. Astrocytes express specific variants of CaM KII delta and gamma, but not alpha and beta, that determine their cellular localizations.

    PubMed

    Vallano, M L; Beaman-Hall, C M; Mathur, A; Chen, Q

    2000-04-01

    Multiple isoforms of type II Ca(2+)-calmodulin-dependent kinase (CaM KII) are composed of two major neuron-specific subunits, designated alpha and beta, and two less well-characterized subunits that are also expressed in non-neuronal tissues, designated delta and gamma. Regulated expression of these 4 gene products, and several variants produced by alternative splicing, shows temporal and regional specificity and influences intracellular targeting. We used immunoblotting and RT-PCR to analyze subunit and variant expression and distribution in cultured cerebellar astrocytes and neurons, and whole cerebellar cortex from rodent brain. The data indicate that: (i) astrocytes express a single splice variant of delta, namely delta(2); (ii) like neurons, astrocytes express two forms of CaM KII gamma; gamma(B) and gamma(A); (iii) these CaM KII variants are enriched in the supernate fraction in astrocytes, and the particulate fraction in neurons; (iv) unlike neurons, astrocytes do not express detectable levels of alpha or beta subunits or their respective splice variants. The results indicate that neurons and astrocytes express distinct CaM KII subunits and variants that localize to distinct subcellular compartments and, by inference, exert distinct cellular functions. Copyright 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  11. Elucidating the Role of Injury-Induced Electric Fields (EFs) in Regulating the Astrocytic Response to Injury in the Mammalian Central Nervous System

    PubMed Central

    Baer, Matthew L.; Henderson, Scott C.; Colello, Raymond J.

    2015-01-01

    Injury to the vertebrate central nervous system (CNS) induces astrocytes to change their morphology, to increase their rate of proliferation, and to display directional migration to the injury site, all to facilitate repair. These astrocytic responses to injury occur in a clear temporal sequence and, by their intensity and duration, can have both beneficial and detrimental effects on the repair of damaged CNS tissue. Studies on highly regenerative tissues in non-mammalian vertebrates have demonstrated that the intensity of direct-current extracellular electric fields (EFs) at the injury site, which are 50–100 fold greater than in uninjured tissue, represent a potent signal to drive tissue repair. In contrast, a 10-fold EF increase has been measured in many injured mammalian tissues where limited regeneration occurs. As the astrocytic response to CNS injury is crucial to the reparative outcome, we exposed purified rat cortical astrocytes to EF intensities associated with intact and injured mammalian tissues, as well as to those EF intensities measured in regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, to determine whether EFs may contribute to the astrocytic injury response. Astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with uninjured tissue showed little change in their cellular behavior. However, astrocytes exposed to EF intensities associated with injured tissue showed a dramatic increase in migration and proliferation. At EF intensities associated with regenerating non-mammalian vertebrate tissues, these cellular responses were even more robust and included morphological changes consistent with a regenerative phenotype. These findings suggest that endogenous EFs may be a crucial signal for regulating the astrocytic response to injury and that their manipulation may be a novel target for facilitating CNS repair. PMID:26562295

  12. Inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3β by lithium chloride suppresses 6-hydroxydopamine-induced inflammatory response in primary cultured astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hong-Mei; Zhang, Ting; Li, Qiang; Huang, Jian-Kang; Chen, Rong-Fu; Sun, Xiao-Jiang

    2013-11-01

    An increasing amount of evidence has emerged to suggest that neuroinflammatory process is involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Activated microglia and astrocytes are found in the substantia nigra (SN) of Parkinson's disease brains as well as in animal models of Parkinson's disease. Although reactive astrocytes are involved in the progression of PD, the role of reactive astrocytes in neuroinflammation of PD has received limited attention to date. Recently, Glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) was identified as a crucial regulator of the inflammatory response. The purpose of this study was to explore the mechanism by which 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) induces inflammatory response in astrocytes and observe the anti-inflammatory effect of lithium chloride (LiCl) on 6-OHDA-treated astrocytes. In the present study, we found that glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) was markedly upregulated in the presence of 6-OHDA. Moreover, our results revealed that proinflammatory molecules including inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), nitric oxide (NO), cyclooxygenase-2(COX-2), prostaglandins E2 (PGE2), and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) were obviously increased in astrocytes exposed to 6-OHDA. Western blot analysis revealed that 6-OHDA significantly increased dephosphorylation/activation of GSK-3β as well as the nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) p65. Besides, GSK-3β inhibitor LiCl and SB415286 inhibited the GSK-3β/NF-κB signaling pathway, leading to the reduction of proinflammatory molecules in 6-OHDA-activated astrocytes. These results confirmed that GSK-3β inhibitor LiCl and SB415286 provide protection against neuroinflammation in 6-OHDA-treated astrocytes. Therefore, GSK-3β may be a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of PD. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Phagocytic response of astrocytes to damaged neighboring cells

    PubMed Central

    Cruz, Gladys Mae S.; Ro, Clarissa C.; Moncada, Emmanuel G.; Khatibzadeh, Nima; Flanagan, Lisa A.; Berns, Michael W.

    2018-01-01

    This study aims to understand the phagocytic response of astrocytes to the injury of neurons or other astrocytes at the single cell level. Laser nanosurgery was used to damage individual cells in both primary mouse cortical astrocytes and an established astrocyte cell line. In both cases, the release of material/substances from laser-irradiated astrocytes or neurons induced a phagocytic response in near-by astrocytes. Propidium iodide stained DNA originating from irradiated cells was visible in vesicles of neighboring cells, confirming phagocytosis of material from damaged cortical cells. In the presence of an intracellular pH indicator dye, newly formed vesicles correspond to acidic pH fluorescence, thus suggesting lysosome bound degradation of cellular debris. Cells with shared membrane connections prior to laser damage had a significantly higher frequency of induced phagocytosis compared to isolated cells with no shared membrane. The increase in phagocytic response of cells with a shared membrane occurred regardless of the extent of shared membrane (a thin filopodial connection vs. a cell cluster with significant shared membrane). In addition to the presence (or lack) of a membrane connection, variation in phagocytic ability was also observed with differences in injury location within the cell and distance separating isolated astrocytes. These results demonstrate the ability of an astrocyte to respond to the damage of a single cell, be it another astrocyte, or a neuron. This single-cell level of analysis results in a better understanding of the role of astrocytes to maintain homeostasis in the CNS, particularly in the sensing and removal of debris in damaged or pathologic nervous tissue. PMID:29708987

  14. Astrocyte pathology in the ventral prefrontal white matter in depression.

    PubMed

    Rajkowska, Grazyna; Legutko, Beata; Moulana, Mohadetheh; Syed, Maryam; Romero, Damian G; Stockmeier, Craig A; Miguel-Hidalgo, Jose Javier

    2018-04-07

    Astrocyte functions in white matter are less well understood than in gray matter. Our recent study of white matter in ventral prefrontal cortex (vPFC) revealed alterations in expression of myelin-related genes in major depressive disorder (MDD). Since white matter astrocytes maintain myelin, we hypothesized that morphometry of these cells will be altered in MDD in the same prefrontal white matter region in which myelin-related genes are altered. White matter adjacent to vPFC was examined in 25 MDD and 21 control subjects. Density and size of GFAP-immunoreactive (-ir) astrocyte cell bodies was measured. The area fraction of GFAP-ir astrocytes (cell bodies + processes) was also estimated. GFAP mRNA expression was determined using qRT-PCR. The density of GFAP-ir astrocytes was also measured in vPFC white matter of rats subjected to chronic unpredictable stress (CUS) and control animals. Fibrous and smooth GFAP-ir astrocytes were distinguished in human white matter. The density of both types of astrocytes was significantly decreased in MDD. Area fraction of GFAP immunoreactivity was significantly decreased in MDD, but mean soma size remained unchanged. Expression of GFAP mRNA was significantly decreased in MDD. In CUS rats there was a significant decrease in astrocyte density in prefrontal white matter. The decrease in density and area fraction of white matter astrocytes and GFAP mRNA in MDD may be linked to myelin pathology previously noted in these subjects. Astrocyte pathology may contribute to axon disturbances in axon integrity reported by neuroimaging studies in MDD and interfere with signal conduction in the white matter. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Genome-Scale Reconstruction of the Human Astrocyte Metabolic Network

    PubMed Central

    Martín-Jiménez, Cynthia A.; Salazar-Barreto, Diego; Barreto, George E.; González, Janneth

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cells of the central nervous system; they have a predominant role in maintaining brain metabolism. In this sense, abnormal metabolic states have been found in different neuropathological diseases. Determination of metabolic states of astrocytes is difficult to model using current experimental approaches given the high number of reactions and metabolites present. Thus, genome-scale metabolic networks derived from transcriptomic data can be used as a framework to elucidate how astrocytes modulate human brain metabolic states during normal conditions and in neurodegenerative diseases. We performed a Genome-Scale Reconstruction of the Human Astrocyte Metabolic Network with the purpose of elucidating a significant portion of the metabolic map of the astrocyte. This is the first global high-quality, manually curated metabolic reconstruction network of a human astrocyte. It includes 5,007 metabolites and 5,659 reactions distributed among 8 cell compartments, (extracellular, cytoplasm, mitochondria, endoplasmic reticle, Golgi apparatus, lysosome, peroxisome and nucleus). Using the reconstructed network, the metabolic capabilities of human astrocytes were calculated and compared both in normal and ischemic conditions. We identified reactions activated in these two states, which can be useful for understanding the astrocytic pathways that are affected during brain disease. Additionally, we also showed that the obtained flux distributions in the model, are in accordance with literature-based findings. Up to date, this is the most complete representation of the human astrocyte in terms of inclusion of genes, proteins, reactions and metabolic pathways, being a useful guide for in-silico analysis of several metabolic behaviors of the astrocyte during normal and pathologic states. PMID:28243200

  16. α-Synuclein transfer between neurons and astrocytes indicates that astrocytes play a role in degradation rather than in spreading.

    PubMed

    Loria, Frida; Vargas, Jessica Y; Bousset, Luc; Syan, Sylvie; Salles, Audrey; Melki, Ronald; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2017-11-01

    Recent evidence suggests that disease progression in Parkinson's disease (PD) could occur by the spreading of α-synuclein (α-syn) aggregates between neurons. Here we studied the role of astrocytes in the intercellular transfer and fate of α-syn fibrils, using in vitro and ex vivo models. α-Syn fibrils can be transferred to neighboring cells; however, the transfer efficiency changes depending on the cell types. We found that α-syn is efficiently transferred from astrocytes to astrocytes and from neurons to astrocytes, but less efficiently from astrocytes to neurons. Interestingly, α-syn puncta are mainly found inside the lysosomal compartments of the recipient cells. However, differently from neurons, astrocytes are able to efficiently degrade fibrillar α-syn, suggesting an active role for these cells in clearing α-syn deposits. Astrocytes co-cultured with organotypic brain slices are able to take up α-syn fibrils from the slices. Altogether our data support a role for astrocytes in trapping and clearing α-syn pathological deposits in PD.

  17. The metabolic trinity, glucose-glycogen-lactate, links astrocytes and neurons in brain energetics, signaling, memory, and gene expression.

    PubMed

    Dienel, Gerald A

    2017-01-10

    Glucose, glycogen, and lactate are traditionally identified with brain energetics, ATP turnover, and pathophysiology. However, recent studies extend their roles to include involvement in astrocytic signaling, memory consolidation, and gene expression. Emerging roles for these brain fuels and a readily-diffusible by-product are linked to differential fluxes in glycolytic and oxidative pathways, astrocytic glycogen dynamics, redox shifts, neuron-astrocyte interactions, and regulation of astrocytic activities by noradrenaline released from the locus coeruleus. Disproportionate utilization of carbohydrate compared with oxygen during brain activation is influenced by catecholamines, but its physiological basis is not understood and its magnitude may be affected by technical aspects of metabolite assays. Memory consolidation and gene expression are impaired by glycogenolysis blockade, and prevention of these deficits by injection of abnormally-high concentrations of lactate was interpreted as a requirement for astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttling in memory and gene expression. However, lactate transport was not measured and evidence for presumed shuttling is not compelling. In fact, high levels of lactate used to preserve memory consolidation and induce gene expression are sufficient to shut down neuronal firing via the HCAR1 receptor. In contrast, low lactate levels activate a receptor in locus coeruleus that stimulates noradrenaline release that may activate astrocytes throughout brain. Physiological relevance of exogenous concentrations of lactate used to mimic and evaluate metabolic, molecular, and behavioral effects of lactate requires close correspondence with the normal lactate levels, the biochemical and cellular sources and sinks, and specificity of lactate delivery to target cells. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. SLAM- and nectin-4-independent noncytolytic spread of canine distemper virus in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Alves, Lisa; Khosravi, Mojtaba; Avila, Mislay; Ader-Ebert, Nadine; Bringolf, Fanny; Zurbriggen, Andreas; Vandevelde, Marc; Plattet, Philippe

    2015-05-01

    Measles and canine distemper viruses (MeV and CDV, respectively) first replicate in lymphatic and epithelial tissues by using SLAM and nectin-4 as entry receptors, respectively. The viruses may also invade the brain to establish persistent infections, triggering fatal complications, such as subacute sclerosis pan-encephalitis (SSPE) in MeV infection or chronic, multiple sclerosis-like, multifocal demyelinating lesions in the case of CDV infection. In both diseases, persistence is mediated by viral nucleocapsids that do not require packaging into particles for infectivity but are directly transmitted from cell to cell (neurons in SSPE or astrocytes in distemper encephalitis), presumably by relying on restricted microfusion events. Indeed, although morphological evidence of fusion remained undetectable, viral fusion machineries and, thus, a putative cellular receptor, were shown to contribute to persistent infections. Here, we first showed that nectin-4-dependent cell-cell fusion in Vero cells, triggered by a demyelinating CDV strain, remained extremely limited, thereby supporting a potential role of nectin-4 in mediating persistent infections in astrocytes. However, nectin-4 could not be detected in either primary cultured astrocytes or the white matter of tissue sections. In addition, a bioengineered "nectin-4-blind" recombinant CDV retained full cell-to-cell transmission efficacy in primary astrocytes. Combined with our previous report demonstrating the absence of SLAM expression in astrocytes, these findings are suggestive for the existence of a hitherto unrecognized third CDV receptor expressed by glial cells that contributes to the induction of noncytolytic cell-to-cell viral transmission in astrocytes. While persistent measles virus (MeV) infection induces SSPE in humans, persistent canine distemper virus (CDV) infection causes chronic progressive or relapsing demyelination in carnivores. Common to both central nervous system (CNS) infections is that

  19. Translational potential of astrocytes in brain disorders

    PubMed Central

    Verkhratsky, Alexei; Steardo, Luca; Montana, Vedrana

    2015-01-01

    Fundamentally, all brain disorders can be broadly defined as the homeostatic failure of this organ. As the brain is composed of many different cells types, including but not limited to neurons and glia, it is only logical that all the cell types/constituents could play a role in health and disease. Yet, for a long time the sole conceptualization of brain pathology was focused on the well-being of neurons. Here, we challenge this neuron-centric view and present neuroglia as a key element in neuropathology, a process that has a toll on astrocytes, which undergo complex morpho-functional changes that can in turn affect the course of the disorder. Such changes can be grossly identified as reactivity, atrophy with loss of function and pathological remodeling. We outline the pathogenic potential of astrocytes in variety of disorders, ranging from neurotrauma, infection, toxic damage, stroke, epilepsy, neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorders, Alexander disease to neoplastic changes seen in gliomas. We hope that in near future we would witness glial-based translational medicine with generation of deliverables for the containment and cure of disorders. We point out that such as a task will require a holistic and multi-disciplinary approach that will take in consideration the concerted operation of all the cell types in the brain. PMID:26386136

  20. Astrocytes refine cortical connectivity at dendritic spines

    PubMed Central

    Risher, W Christopher; Patel, Sagar; Kim, Il Hwan; Uezu, Akiyoshi; Bhagat, Srishti; Wilton, Daniel K; Pilaz, Louis-Jan; Singh Alvarado, Jonnathan; Calhan, Osman Y; Silver, Debra L; Stevens, Beth; Calakos, Nicole; Soderling, Scott H; Eroglu, Cagla

    2014-01-01

    During cortical synaptic development, thalamic axons must establish synaptic connections despite the presence of the more abundant intracortical projections. How thalamocortical synapses are formed and maintained in this competitive environment is unknown. Here, we show that astrocyte-secreted protein hevin is required for normal thalamocortical synaptic connectivity in the mouse cortex. Absence of hevin results in a profound, long-lasting reduction in thalamocortical synapses accompanied by a transient increase in intracortical excitatory connections. Three-dimensional reconstructions of cortical neurons from serial section electron microscopy (ssEM) revealed that, during early postnatal development, dendritic spines often receive multiple excitatory inputs. Immuno-EM and confocal analyses revealed that majority of the spines with multiple excitatory contacts (SMECs) receive simultaneous thalamic and cortical inputs. Proportion of SMECs diminishes as the brain develops, but SMECs remain abundant in Hevin-null mice. These findings reveal that, through secretion of hevin, astrocytes control an important developmental synaptic refinement process at dendritic spines. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04047.001 PMID:25517933

  1. Evidence for heterogeneity of astrocyte de-differentiation in vitro: astrocytes transform into intermediate precursor cells following induction of ACM from scratch-insulted astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hao; Qian, Xin-Hong; Cong, Rui; Li, Jing-wen; Yao, Qin; Jiao, Xi-Ying; Ju, Gong; You, Si-Wei

    2010-04-01

    Our previous study definitely demonstrated that the mature astrocytes could undergo a de-differentiation process and further transform into pluripotential neural stem cells (NSCs), which might well arise from the effect of diffusible factors released from scratch-insulted astrocytes. However, these neurospheres passaged from one neurosphere-derived from de-differentiated astrocytes possessed a completely distinct characteristic in the differentiation behavior, namely heterogeneity of differentiation. The heterogeneity in cell differentiation has become a crucial but elusive issue. In this study, we show that purified astrocytes could de-differentiate into intermediate precursor cells (IPCs) with addition of scratch-insulted astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) to the culture, which can express NG2 and A2B5, the IPCs markers. Apart from the number of NG2(+) and A2B5(+) cells, the percentage of proliferative cells as labeled with BrdU progressively increased with prolonged culture period ranging from 1 to 10 days. Meanwhile, the protein level of A2B5 in cells also increased significantly. These results revealed that not all astrocytes could de-differentiate fully into NSCs directly when induced by ACM, rather they generated intermediate or more restricted precursor cells that might undergo progressive de-differentiation to generate NSCs.

  2. Regulation of NF-{kappa}B activity in astrocytes: effects of flavonoids at dietary-relevant concentrations

    SciTech Connect

    Spilsbury, Alison; Vauzour, David; Spencer, Jeremy P.E.

    TNF{alpha}-induced NF-{kappa}B activity. Therefore, we conclude that NF-{kappa}B signalling in astrocytes is not a major target for flavonoids.« less

  3. Astrocytic β2-adrenergic receptors mediate hippocampal long-term memory consolidation.

    PubMed

    Gao, Virginia; Suzuki, Akinobu; Magistretti, Pierre J; Lengacher, Sylvain; Pollonini, Gabriella; Steinman, Michael Q; Alberini, Cristina M

    2016-07-26

    Emotionally relevant experiences form strong and long-lasting memories by critically engaging the stress hormone/neurotransmitter noradrenaline, which mediates and modulates the consolidation of these memories. Noradrenaline acts through adrenergic receptors (ARs), of which β2-adrenergic receptors (βARs) are of particular importance. The differential anatomical and cellular distribution of βAR subtypes in the brain suggests that they play distinct roles in memory processing, although much about their specific contributions and mechanisms of action remains to be understood. Here we show that astrocytic rather than neuronal β2ARs in the hippocampus play a key role in the consolidation of a fear-based contextual memory. These hippocampal β2ARs, but not β1ARs, are coupled to the training-dependent release of lactate from astrocytes, which is necessary for long-term memory formation and for underlying molecular changes. This key metabolic role of astrocytic β2ARs may represent a novel target mechanism for stress-related psychopathologies and neurodegeneration.

  4. In vivo labeling of cortical astrocytes with sulforhodamine 101 (SR101).

    PubMed

    Nimmerjahn, Axel; Helmchen, Fritjof

    2012-03-01

    Fluorescent markers that stain particular cell types in the intact brain are essential tools for fluorescence microscopy because they enable studies of structure and function of cells identified in this way. Although cell type-specific fluorescence staining can be achieved through promoter-driven expression of fluorescent proteins, this genetic approach is generally labor- and cost-intensive. Alternative viral approaches for targeted fluorophore expression are relatively invasive. For astrocytes, there is a simple alternative. This protocol describes an easy and robust method for rapid (within minutes) and high-contrast staining of astrocytes in defined regions of the intact rodent cortex using the synthetic, water-soluble but non-fixable red fluorescent dye sulforhodamine 101 (SR101). Selective staining is achieved through local uptake and gap junction-mediated spread of SR101 following its topical application or injection into tissue. Applications, technical pitfalls, and limitations of the SR101-staining technique are discussed. Given its simplicity and reliability, SR101 staining is a valuable tool for the study of astrocyte function in the intact brain and for in vivo fluorescence microscopy in general.

  5. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    SciTech Connect

    Schulze, Wiebke; Hayata-Takano, Atsuko; Kamo, Toshihiko

    2015-03-27

    Systematic and simultaneous analysis of multiple cell types in the brain is becoming important, but such tools have not yet been adequately developed. Here, we aimed to generate a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes, two major cell types in the brain, and we have developed lentiviral vectors to express the red fluorescent protein tdTomato in neurons and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in astrocytes. Importantly, both fluorescent proteins are fused to histone 2B protein (H2B) to confer nuclear localization to distinguish between single cells. We also constructed several expression constructs, including a tandem alignmentmore » of the neuron- and astrocyte-expression cassettes for simultaneous labeling. Introducing these vectors and constructs in vitro and in vivo resulted in cell type-specific and nuclear-localized fluorescence signals enabling easy detection and distinguishability of neurons and astrocytes. This tool is expected to be utilized for the simultaneous analysis of changes in neurons and astrocytes in healthy and diseased brains. - Highlights: • We develop a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes. • Neuron-specific labeling is achieved using Scg10 and synapsin promoters. • Astrocyte-specific labeling is generated using the minimal GFAP promoter. • Nuclear localization of fluorescent proteins is achieved with histone 2B protein.« less

  6. Rapid communication between neurons and astrocytes in primary cortical cultures.

    PubMed

    Murphy, T H; Blatter, L A; Wier, W G; Baraban, J M

    1993-06-01

    The identification of neurotransmitter receptors and voltage-sensitive ion channels on astrocytes (reviewed by Barres, 1991) has renewed interest in how these cells respond to neuronal activity. To investigate the physiology of neuron astrocyte signaling, we have employed primary cortical cultures that contain both neuronal and glial cells. As the neurons in these cultures exhibit synchronous spontaneous synaptic activity, we have used both calcium imaging and whole-cell recording techniques to identify physiological activity in astrocytes related to neuronal activity. Whole-cell voltage-clamp records from astrocytes revealed rapid inward currents that coincide with bursts of electrical activity in neighboring neurons. Calcium imaging studies demonstrate that these currents in astrocytes are not always associated with slowly propagating calcium waves. Inclusion of the dye Lucifer yellow within patch pipettes confirmed that astrocytes are extensively coupled to each other but not to adjacent neurons, indicating that the currents observed are not due to gap junction connections between these cell types. These currents do not reflect widespread diffusion of glutamate or potassium released during neuronal activity since a population of small, round, multipolar presumed glial cells that are not dye coupled to adjacent cells did not display electrical currents coincident with neuronal firing, even though they respond to locally applied glutamate and potassium. These findings indicate that, in addition to the relatively slow signaling conveyed by calcium waves, astrocytes also display rapid electrical responses to neuronal activity.

  7. The Synaptic Cell Adhesion Molecule, SynCAM1, Mediates Astrocyte-to-Astrocyte and Astrocyte-to-GnRH Neuron Adhesiveness in the Mouse Hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Sandau, Ursula S.; Mungenast, Alison E.; McCarthy, Jack; Biederer, Thomas; Corfas, Gabriel

    2011-01-01

    We previously identified synaptic cell adhesion molecule 1 (SynCAM1) as a component of a genetic network involved in the hypothalamic control of female puberty. Although it is well established that SynCAM1 is a synaptic adhesion molecule, its contribution to hypothalamic function is unknown. Here we show that, in addition to the expected neuronal localization illustrated by its presence in GnRH neurons, SynCAM1 is expressed in hypothalamic astrocytes. Cell adhesion assays indicated that SynCAM is recognized by both GnRH neurons and astrocytes as an adhesive partner and promotes cell-cell adhesiveness via homophilic, extracellular domain-mediated interactions. Alternative splicing of the SynCAM1 primary mRNA transcript yields four mRNAs encoding membrane-spanning SynCAM1 isoforms. Variants 1 and 4 are predicted to be both N and O glycosylated. Hypothalamic astrocytes and GnRH-producing GT1-7 cells express mainly isoform 4 mRNA, and sequential N- and O-deglycosylation of proteins extracted from these cells yields progressively smaller SynCAM1 species, indicating that isoform 4 is the predominant SynCAM1 variant expressed in astrocytes and GT1-7 cells. Neither cell type expresses the products of two other SynCAM genes (SynCAM2 and SynCAM3), suggesting that SynCAM-mediated astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-GnRH neuron adhesiveness is mostly mediated by SynCAM1 homophilic interactions. When erbB4 receptor function is disrupted in astrocytes, via transgenic expression of a dominant-negative erbB4 receptor form, SynCAM1-mediated adhesiveness is severely compromised. Conversely, SynCAM1 adhesive behavior is rapidly, but transiently, enhanced in astrocytes by ligand-dependent activation of erbB4 receptors, suggesting that erbB4-mediated events affecting SynCAM1 function contribute to regulate astrocyte adhesive communication. PMID:21486931

  8. Fingolimod induces neuroprotective factors in human astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Franziska S; Hofereiter, Johann; Rübsamen, Heike; Melms, Johannes; Schwarz, Sigrid; Faber, Hans; Weber, Peter; Pütz, Benno; Loleit, Verena; Weber, Frank; Hohlfeld, Reinhard; Meinl, Edgar; Krumbholz, Markus

    2015-09-30

    Fingolimod (FTY720) is the first sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) receptor modulator approved for the treatment of multiple sclerosis. The phosphorylated active metabolite FTY720-phosphate (FTY-P) interferes with lymphocyte trafficking. In addition, it accumulates in the CNS and reduces brain atrophy in multiple sclerosis (MS), and neuroprotective effects are hypothesized. Human primary astrocytes as well as human astrocytoma cells were stimulated with FTY-P or S1P. We analyzed gene expression by a genome-wide microarray and validated induced candidate genes by quantitative PCR (qPCR) and ELISA. To identify the S1P-receptor subtypes involved, we applied a membrane-impermeable S1P analog (dihydro-S1P), receptor subtype specific agonists and antagonists, as well as RNAi silencing. FTY-P induced leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), interleukin 11 (IL11), and heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor (HBEGF) mRNA, as well as secretion of LIF and IL11 protein. In order to mimic an inflammatory milieu as observed in active MS lesions, we combined FTY-P application with tumor necrosis factor (TNF). In the presence of this key inflammatory cytokine, FTY-P synergistically induced LIF, HBEGF, and IL11 mRNA, as well as secretion of LIF and IL11 protein. TNF itself induced inflammatory, B-cell promoting, and antiviral factors (CXCL10, BAFF, MX1, and OAS2). Their induction was blocked by FTY-P. After continuous exposure of cells to FTY-P or S1P for up to 7 days, the extent of induction of neurotrophic factors and the suppression of TNF-induced inflammatory genes declined but was still detectable. The induction of neurotrophic factors was mediated via surface S1P receptors 1 (S1PR1) and 3 (S1PR3). We identified effects of FTY-P on astrocytes, namely induction of neurotrophic mediators (LIF, HBEGF, and IL11) and inhibition of TNF-induced inflammatory genes (CXCL10, BAFF, MX1, and OAS2). This supports the view that a part of the effects of fingolimod may be mediated via astrocytes.

  9. Brain energy metabolism: focus on astrocyte-neuron metabolic cooperation.

    PubMed

    Bélanger, Mireille; Allaman, Igor; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2011-12-07

    The energy requirements of the brain are very high, and tight regulatory mechanisms operate to ensure adequate spatial and temporal delivery of energy substrates in register with neuronal activity. Astrocytes-a type of glial cell-have emerged as active players in brain energy delivery, production, utilization, and storage. Our understanding of neuroenergetics is rapidly evolving from a "neurocentric" view to a more integrated picture involving an intense cooperativity between astrocytes and neurons. This review focuses on the cellular aspects of brain energy metabolism, with a particular emphasis on the metabolic interactions between neurons and astrocytes. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Endothelial-astrocytic interactions in acute liver failure.

    PubMed

    Jayakumar, A R; Norenberg, M D

    2013-06-01

    Brain edema and the subsequent increase in intracranial pressure are major neurological complications of acute liver failure (ALF), and swelling of astrocytes (cytotoxic brain edema) is the most prominent neuropathological abnormality in ALF. Recent studies, however, have suggested the co-existence of cytotoxic and vasogenic mechanisms in the brain edema associated with ALF. This review 1) summarizes the nature of the brain edema in humans and experimental animals with ALF; 2) reviews in vitro studies supporting the presence of cytotoxic brain edema (cell swelling in cultured astrocytes); and 3) documents the role of brain endothelial cells in the development of astrocyte swelling/brain edema in ALF.

  11. Is there an astrocyte-neuron ketone body shuttle?

    PubMed

    Guzmán, M; Blázquez, C

    2001-01-01

    Ketone bodies can replace glucose as the major source of brain energy when glucose becomes scarce. Although it is generally assumed that the liver supplies extrahepatic tissues with ketone bodies, recent evidence shows that astrocytes are also ketogenic cells. Moreover, the partitioning of fatty acids between ketogenesis and ceramide synthesis de novo might control the survival/death decision of neural cells. These findings support the notion that astrocytes might supply neurons with ketone bodies in situ, and raise the possibility that astrocyte ketogenesis is a cytoprotective pathway.

  12. Autoantibody-induced internalization of CNS AQP4 water channel and EAAT2 glutamate transporter requires astrocytic Fc receptor.

    PubMed

    Hinson, Shannon R; Clift, Ian C; Luo, Ningling; Kryzer, Thomas J; Lennon, Vanda A

    2017-05-23

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) water channel-specific IgG distinguishes neuromyelitis optica (NMO) from multiple sclerosis and causes characteristic immunopathology in which central nervous system (CNS) demyelination is secondary. Early events initiating the pathophysiological outcomes of IgG binding to astrocytic AQP4 are poorly understood. CNS lesions reflect events documented in vitro following IgG interaction with AQP4: AQP4 internalization, attenuated glutamate uptake, intramyelinic edema, interleukin-6 release, complement activation, inflammatory cell recruitment, and demyelination. Here, we demonstrate that AQP4 internalization requires AQP4-bound IgG to engage an astrocytic Fcγ receptor (FcγR). IgG-lacking Fc redistributes AQP4 within the plasma membrane and induces interleukin-6 release. However, AQP4 endocytosis requires an activating FcγR's gamma subunit and involves astrocytic membrane loss of an inhibitory FcγR, CD32B. Interaction of the IgG-AQP4 complex with FcγRs triggers coendocytosis of the excitatory amino acid transporter 2 (EAAT2). Requirement of FcγR engagement for internalization of two astrocytic membrane proteins critical to CNS homeostasis identifies a complement-independent, upstream target for potential early therapeutic intervention in NMO.

  13. Autoantibody-induced internalization of CNS AQP4 water channel and EAAT2 glutamate transporter requires astrocytic Fc receptor

    PubMed Central

    Hinson, Shannon R.; Clift, Ian C.; Luo, Ningling; Kryzer, Thomas J.; Lennon, Vanda A.

    2017-01-01

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP4) water channel-specific IgG distinguishes neuromyelitis optica (NMO) from multiple sclerosis and causes characteristic immunopathology in which central nervous system (CNS) demyelination is secondary. Early events initiating the pathophysiological outcomes of IgG binding to astrocytic AQP4 are poorly understood. CNS lesions reflect events documented in vitro following IgG interaction with AQP4: AQP4 internalization, attenuated glutamate uptake, intramyelinic edema, interleukin-6 release, complement activation, inflammatory cell recruitment, and demyelination. Here, we demonstrate that AQP4 internalization requires AQP4-bound IgG to engage an astrocytic Fcγ receptor (FcγR). IgG-lacking Fc redistributes AQP4 within the plasma membrane and induces interleukin-6 release. However, AQP4 endocytosis requires an activating FcγR’s gamma subunit and involves astrocytic membrane loss of an inhibitory FcγR, CD32B. Interaction of the IgG–AQP4 complex with FcγRs triggers coendocytosis of the excitatory amino acid transporter 2 (EAAT2). Requirement of FcγR engagement for internalization of two astrocytic membrane proteins critical to CNS homeostasis identifies a complement-independent, upstream target for potential early therapeutic intervention in NMO. PMID:28461494

  14. Differential activation of catalase expression and activity by PPAR agonists: Implications for astrocyte protection in anti-glioma therapy☆

    PubMed Central

    Khoo, Nicholas K.H.; Hebbar, Sachin; Zhao, Weiling; Moore, Steven A.; Domann, Frederick E.; Robbins, Mike E.

    2013-01-01

    Glioma survival is dismal, in part, due to an imbalance in antioxidant expression and activity. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) agonists have antineoplastic properties which present new redox-dependent targets for glioma anticancer therapies. Herein, we demonstrate that treatment of primary cultures of normal rat astrocytes with PPAR agonists increased the expression of catalase mRNA protein, and enzymatic activity. In contrast, these same agonists had no effect on catalase expression and activity in malignant rat glioma cells. The increase in steady-state catalase mRNA observed in normal rat astrocytes was due, in part, to de novo mRNA synthesis as opposed to increased catalase mRNA stability. Moreover, pioglitazone-mediated induction of catalase activity in normal rat astrocytes was completely blocked by transfection with a PPARγ-dominant negative plasmid. These data suggest that defects in PPAR-mediated signaling and gene expression may represent a block to normal catalase expression and induction in malignant glioma. The ability of PPAR agonists to differentially increase catalase expression and activity in normal astrocytes but not glioma cells suggests that these compounds might represent novel adjuvant therapeutic agents for the treatment of gliomas. PMID:24024139

  15. Identification of diverse astrocyte populations and their malignant analogs.

    PubMed

    John Lin, Chia-Ching; Yu, Kwanha; Hatcher, Asante; Huang, Teng-Wei; Lee, Hyun Kyoung; Carlson, Jeffrey; Weston, Matthew C; Chen, Fengju; Zhang, Yiqun; Zhu, Wenyi; Mohila, Carrie A; Ahmed, Nabil; Patel, Akash J; Arenkiel, Benjamin R; Noebels, Jeffrey L; Creighton, Chad J; Deneen, Benjamin

    2017-03-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell type in the brain, where they perform a wide array of functions, yet the nature of their cellular heterogeneity and how it oversees these diverse roles remains shrouded in mystery. Using an intersectional fluorescence-activated cell sorting-based strategy, we identified five distinct astrocyte subpopulations present across three brain regions that show extensive molecular diversity. Application of this molecular insight toward function revealed that these populations differentially support synaptogenesis between neurons. We identified correlative populations in mouse and human glioma and found that the emergence of specific subpopulations during tumor progression corresponded with the onset of seizures and tumor invasion. In sum, we have identified subpopulations of astrocytes in the adult brain and their correlates in glioma that are endowed with diverse cellular, molecular and functional properties. These populations selectively contribute to synaptogenesis and tumor pathophysiology, providing a blueprint for understanding diverse astrocyte contributions to neurological disease.

  16. Anethole dithiolethione prevents oxidative damage in glutathione-depleted astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Drukarch, B; Schepens, E; Stoof, J C; Langeveld, C H

    1997-06-25

    Astrocytes protect neurons against reactive oxygen species such as hydrogen peroxide, a capacity which reportedly is abolished following loss of the antioxidant glutathione. Anethole dithiolethione, a sulfur-containing compound which is used in humans, is known to increase cellular glutathione levels and thought thereby to protect against oxidative damage. In the present study we found that anethole dithiolethione increased the glutathione content of cultured rat striatal astrocytes. This effect was abolished by coincubation with the glutathione synthesis inhibitor buthionine sulfoximine. Nevertheless, in the presence of buthionine sulfoximine, despite the lack of an increase in the lowered glutathione level, anethole dithiolethione fully protected the astrocytes against the enhanced toxicity of hydrogen peroxide. Thus, apparently other mechanisms than stimulation of glutathione synthesis are involved in the compound's protective action in astrocytes. Considering the occurrence of lowered glutathione levels in neurodegenerative syndromes, we conclude that further evaluation of the therapeutic potential of anethole dithiolethione is warranted.

  17. Ras Family GTPases Control Growth of Astrocyte Processes

    PubMed Central

    Kalman, Daniel; Gomperts, Stephen N.; Hardy, Stephen; Kitamura, Marina; Bishop, J. Michael

    1999-01-01

    Astrocytes in neuron-free cultures typically lack processes, although they are highly process-bearing in vivo. We show that basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) induces cultured astrocytes to grow processes and that Ras family GTPases mediate these morphological changes. Activated alleles of rac1 and rhoA blocked and reversed bFGF effects when introduced into astrocytes in dissociated culture and in brain slices using recombinant adenoviruses. By contrast, dominant negative (DN) alleles of both GTPases mimicked bFGF effects. A DN allele of Ha-ras blocked bFGF effects but not those of Rac1-DN or RhoA-DN. Our results show that bFGF acting through c-Ha-Ras inhibits endogenous Rac1 and RhoA GTPases thereby triggering astrocyte process growth, and they provide evidence for the regulation of this cascade in vivo by a yet undetermined neuron-derived factor. PMID:10233170

  18. Astrocytic glycogen metabolism in the healthy and diseased brain.

    PubMed

    Bak, Lasse K; Walls, Anne B; Schousboe, Arne; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2018-05-11

    The brain contains a fairly low amount of glycogen, mostly located in astrocytes, a fact that has prompted the suggestion that glycogen does not have a significant physiological role in the brain. However, glycogen metabolism in astrocytes is essential for several key physiological processes and is adversely affected in disease. For instance, diminished ability to break down glycogen impinges on learning, and epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, and type 2 diabetes are all associated with abnormal astrocyte glycogen metabolism. Glycogen metabolism supports astrocytic K + and neurotransmitter glutamate uptake and subsequent glutamine synthesis-three fundamental steps in excitatory signaling at most brain synapses. Thus, there is abundant evidence for a key role of glycogen in brain function. Here, we summarize the physiological brain functions that depend on glycogen, discuss glycogen metabolism in disease, and investigate how glycogen breakdown is regulated at the cellular and molecular levels. © 2018 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  19. Astrocytes mediate synapse elimination through MEGF10 and MERTK pathways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chung, Won-Suk; Clarke, Laura E.; Wang, Gordon X.; Stafford, Benjamin K.; Sher, Alexander; Chakraborty, Chandrani; Joung, Julia; Foo, Lynette C.; Thompson, Andrew; Chen, Chinfei; Smith, Stephen J.; Barres, Ben A.

    2013-12-01

    To achieve its precise neural connectivity, the developing mammalian nervous system undergoes extensive activity-dependent synapse remodelling. Recently, microglial cells have been shown to be responsible for a portion of synaptic pruning, but the remaining mechanisms remain unknown. Here we report a new role for astrocytes in actively engulfing central nervous system synapses. This process helps to mediate synapse elimination, requires the MEGF10 and MERTK phagocytic pathways, and is strongly dependent on neuronal activity. Developing mice deficient in both astrocyte pathways fail to refine their retinogeniculate connections normally and retain excess functional synapses. Finally, we show that in the adult mouse brain, astrocytes continuously engulf both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. These studies reveal a novel role for astrocytes in mediating synapse elimination in the developing and adult brain, identify MEGF10 and MERTK as critical proteins in the synapse remodelling underlying neural circuit refinement, and have important implications for understanding learning and memory as well as neurological disease processes.

  20. Astrocyte elevated gene-1 regulates hepatocellular carcinoma development and progression

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Byoung Kwon; Emdad, Luni; Su, Zao-zhong; Villanueva, Augusto; Chiang, Derek Y.; Mukhopadhyay, Nitai D.; Mills, Alan Scott; Waxman, Samuel; Fisher, Robert A.; Llovet, Josep M.; Fisher, Paul B.; Sarkar, Devanand

    2009-01-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a highly aggressive vascular cancer characterized by diverse etiology, activation of multiple signal transduction pathways, and various gene mutations. Here, we have determined a specific role for astrocyte elevated gene-1 (AEG1) in HCC pathogenesis. Expression of AEG1 was extremely low in human hepatocytes, but its levels were significantly increased in human HCC. Stable overexpression of AEG1 converted nontumorigenic human HCC cells into highly aggressive vascular tumors, and inhibition of AEG1 abrogated tumorigenesis by aggressive HCC cells in a xenograft model of nude mice. In human HCC, AEG1 overexpression was associated with elevated copy numbers. Microarray analysis revealed that AEG1 modulated the expression of genes associated with invasion, metastasis, chemoresistance, angiogenesis, and senescence. AEG1 also was found to activate Wnt/β-catenin signaling via ERK42/44 activation and upregulated lymphoid-enhancing factor 1/T cell factor 1 (LEF1/TCF1), the ultimate executor of the Wnt pathway, important for HCC progression. Inhibition studies further demonstrated that activation of Wnt signaling played a key role in mediating AEG1 function. AEG1 also activated the NF-κB pathway, which may play a role in the chronic inflammatory changes preceding HCC development. These data indicate that AEG1 plays a central role in regulating diverse aspects of HCC pathogenesis. Targeted inhibition of AEG1 might lead to the shutdown of key elemental characteristics of HCC and could lead to an effective therapeutic strategy for HCC. PMID:19221438

  1. Patterning of functional human astrocytes onto parylene-C/SiO2 substrates for the study of Ca2+ dynamics in astrocytic networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raos, B. J.; Simpson, M. C.; Doyle, C. S.; Murray, A. F.; Graham, E. S.; Unsworth, C. P.

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Recent literature suggests that astrocytes form organized functional networks and communicate through transient changes in cytosolic Ca2+. Traditional techniques to investigate network activity, such as pharmacological blocking or genetic knockout, are difficult to restrict to individual cells. The objective of this work is to develop cell-patterning techniques to physically manipulate astrocytic interactions to enable the study of Ca2+ in astrocytic networks. Approach. We investigate how an in vitro cell-patterning platform that utilizes geometric patterns of parylene-C on SiO2 can be used to physically isolate single astrocytes and small astrocytic networks. Main results. We report that single astrocytes are effectively isolated on 75  ×  75 µm square parylene nodes, whereas multi-cellular astrocytic networks are isolated on larger nodes, with the mean number of astrocytes per cluster increasing as a function of node size. Additionally, we report that astrocytes in small multi-cellular clusters exhibit spatio-temporal clustering of Ca2+ transients. Finally, we report that the frequency and regularity of Ca2+ transients was positively correlated with astrocyte connectivity. Significance. The significance of this work is to demonstrate how patterning hNT astrocytes replicates spatio-temporal clustering of Ca2+ signalling that is observed in vivo but not in dissociated in vitro cultures. We therefore highlight the importance of the structure of astrocytic networks in determining ensemble Ca2+ behaviour.

  2. Inhibition or ablation of transglutaminase 2 impairs astrocyte migration.

    PubMed

    Monteagudo, Alina; Ji, Changyi; Akbar, Abdullah; Keillor, Jeffrey W; Johnson, Gail V W

    2017-01-22

    Astrocytes play numerous complex roles that support and facilitate the function of neurons. Further, when there is an injury to the central nervous system (CNS) they can both facilitate or ameliorate functional recovery depending on the location and severity of the injury. When a CNS injury is relatively severe a glial scar is formed, which is primarily composed of astrocytes. The glial scar can be both beneficial, by limiting inflammation, and detrimental, by preventing neuronal projections, to functional recovery. Thus, understanding the processes and proteins that regulate astrocyte migration in response to injury is still of fundamental importance. One protein that is likely involved in astrocyte migration is transglutaminase 2 (TG2); a multifunctional protein expressed ubiquitously throughout the brain. Its functions include transamidation and GTPase activity, among others, and previous studies have implicated TG2 as a regulator of migration. Therefore, we examined the role of TG2 in primary astrocyte migration subsequent to injury. Using wild type or TG2 -/- astrocytes, we manipulated the different functions and conformation of TG2 with novel irreversible inhibitors or mutant versions of the protein. Results showed that both inhibition and ablation of TG2 in primary astrocytes significantly inhibit migration. Additionally, we show that the deficiency in migration caused by deletion of TG2 can only be rescued with the native protein and not with mutants. Finally, the addition of TGFβ rescued the migration deficiency independent of TG2. Taken together, our study shows that transamidation and GTP/GDP-binding are necessary for inhibiting astrocyte migration and it is TGFβ independent. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Calcium in the Mechanism of Ammonia-Induced Astrocyte Swelling

    PubMed Central

    Jayakumar, A.R.; Rao, K.V. Rama; Tong, X.Y; Norenberg, M.D.

    2016-01-01

    Brain edema, due largely to astrocyte swelling, is an important clinical problem in patients with acute liver failure. While mechanisms underlying astrocyte swelling in this condition are not fully understood, ammonia and associated oxidative/nitrosative stress (ONS) appear to be involved. Mechanisms responsible for the increase in reactive oxygen/nitrogen species (RONS) and their role in ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling, however, are poorly understood. Recent studies have demonstrated a transient increase in intracellular Ca2+ in cultured astrocytes exposed to ammonia. As Ca2+ is a known inducer of RONS, we investigated potential mechanisms by which Ca2+ may be responsible for the production of RONS and cell swelling in cultured astrocytes after treatment with ammonia. Exposure of cultured astrocytes to ammonia (5 mM) increased the formation of free radicals, including nitric oxide, and such increase was significantly diminished by treatment with the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA-AM. We then examined the activity of Ca2+-dependent enzymes that are known to generate RONS and found that ammonia significantly increased the activities of NADPH oxidase (NOX), constitutive nitric oxide synthase (cNOS) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) and such increases in activity were significantly diminished by BAPTA. Pretreatment of cultures with 7-nitroindazole, apocyanin and quinacrine, respective inhibitors of cNOS, NOX and PLA2, all significantly diminished RONS production. Additionally, treatment of cultures with BAPTA or with inhibitors of cNOS, NOX and PLA2 reduced ammonia-induced astrocyte swelling. These studies suggest that the ammonia-induced rise in intracellular Ca2+ activates free radical producing enzymes that ultimately contribute to the mechanism of astrocyte swelling. PMID:19393035

  4. Astrocyte structural reactivity and plasticity in models of retinal detachment.

    PubMed

    Luna, Gabriel; Keeley, Patrick W; Reese, Benjamin E; Linberg, Kenneth A; Lewis, Geoffrey P; Fisher, Steven K

    2016-09-01

    Although retinal neurodegenerative conditions such as age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, retinitis pigmentosa, and retinal detachment have different etiologies and pathological characteristics, they also have many responses in common at the cellular level, including neural and glial remodeling. Structural changes in Müller cells, the large radial glia of the retina in retinal disease and injury have been well described, that of the retinal astrocytes remains less so. Using modern imaging technology to describe the structural remodeling of retinal astrocytes after retinal detachment is the focus of this paper. We present both a review of critical literature as well as novel work focusing on the responses of astrocytes following rhegmatogenous and serous retinal detachment. The mouse presents a convenient model system in which to study astrocyte reactivity since the Mϋller cell response is muted in comparison to other species thereby allowing better visualization of the astrocytes. We also show data from rat, cat, squirrel, and human retina demonstrating similarities and differences across species. Our data from immunolabeling and dye-filling experiments demonstrate previously undescribed morphological characteristics of normal astrocytes and changes induced by detachment. Astrocytes not only upregulate GFAP, but structurally remodel, becoming increasingly irregular in appearance, and often penetrating deep into neural retina. Understanding these responses, their consequences, and what drives them may prove to be an important component in improving visual outcome in a variety of therapeutic situations. Our data further supports the concept that astrocytes are important players in the retina's overall response to injury and disease. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  5. Analysis of EZH2: micro-RNA network in low and high grade astrocytic tumors.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Vikas; Purkait, Suvendu; Takkar, Sonam; Malgulwar, Prit Benny; Kumar, Anupam; Pathak, Pankaj; Suri, Vaishali; Sharma, Mehar C; Suri, Ashish; Kale, Shashank Sharad; Kulshreshtha, Ritu; Sarkar, Chitra

    2016-04-01

    Enhancer of Zeste homologue2 (EZH2) is an epigenetic regulator that functions as oncogene in astrocytic tumors, however, EZH2 regulation remains little studied. In this study, we measured EZH2 levels in low (Gr-II,DA) and high grade (Gr-IV,GBM) astrocytic tumors and found significant increased EZH2 transcript level with grade(median DA-8.5, GBM-28.9).However, a different trend was reflected in protein levels, with GBMs showing high EZH2 LI(median-26.5) compared to DA (median 0.3). This difference in correlation of EZH2 protein and RNA levels suggested post-transcriptional regulation of EZH2, likely mediated by miRNAs. We selected eleven miRNAs that strongly predicted to target EZH2 and measured their expression. Three miRNAs (miR-26a-5p,miR27a-3p and miR-498) showed significant correlation with EZH2 protein, suggesting them as regulators of EZH2, however miR-26a-5p levels decreased with grade. ChIP analyses revealed H3K27me3 modifications in miR-26a promoter suggesting feedback loop between EZH2 and miR26a. We further measured six downstream miRNA targets of EZH2 and found significant downregulation of four (miR-181a/b and 200b/c) in GBM. Interestingly, EZH2 associated miRNAs were predicted to target 25 genes in glioma-pathway, suggesting their role in tumor formation or progression. Collectively, our work suggests EZH2 and its miRNA interactors may serve as promising biomarkers for progression of astrocytic tumors and may offer novel therapeutic strategies.

  6. K(+)- and temperature-evoked taurine efflux from hypothalamic astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Tigges, G A; Philibert, R A; Dutton, G R

    1990-10-30

    Hypothalamic astrocytes in culture released taurine, a suspected inhibitory amino acid neurotransmitter/neuromodulator/osmoregulator, in response to isoosmotically increasing extracellular K+ in a dose-dependent fashion. In the absence of added Ca2+, basal release levels rose to approach those obtained after exposure to 60 mM K+ in the presence of 2.5 mM Ca2+, and were only partially lowered by the addition of 10 mM Mg2+. Stimulation with K+ (60 mM) did not further increase taurine efflux above the high basal levels seen in the absence of Ca2+. Under standard conditions complete replacement of Na+ with choline Cl had little effect on basal taurine release, but reduced K(+)-evoked (60 mM) efflux by 60%. The temperature dependence of the basal levels of taurine released from hypothalamic astrocytes was similar to that seen for cultured cerebellar astrocytes and neurons over the range 5-50 degrees C. Taurine release increased from 5 to 15 degrees C, remained constant between 15 and 33 degrees C, decreased between 33 and 37 degrees C and increased thereafter. The infection point of increased basal taurine release seen around 37 degrees C (most prominent in astrocytes), may be of physiological significance. Results presented also show that the ion (Na+, Ca2+ and K+) sensitivities of taurine efflux for cultured hypothalamic astrocytes are similar to those previously reported for cultured astrocytes from the cerebellum.

  7. The role of astrocytes in amyloid production and Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Frost, Georgia R.

    2017-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is marked by the presence of extracellular amyloid beta (Aβ) plaques, intracellular neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) and gliosis, activated glial cells, in the brain. It is thought that Aβ plaques trigger NFT formation, neuronal cell death, neuroinflammation and gliosis and, ultimately, cognitive impairment. There are increased numbers of reactive astrocytes in AD, which surround amyloid plaques and secrete proinflammatory factors and can phagocytize and break down Aβ. It was thought that neuronal cells were the major source of Aβ. However, mounting evidence suggests that astrocytes may play an additional role in AD by secreting significant quantities of Aβ and contributing to overall amyloid burden in the brain. Astrocytes are the most numerous cell type in the brain, and therefore even minor quantities of amyloid secretion from individual astrocytes could prove to be substantial when taken across the whole brain. Reactive astrocytes have increased levels of the three necessary components for Aβ production: amyloid precursor protein, β-secretase (BACE1) and γ-secretase. The identification of environmental factors, such as neuroinflammation, that promote astrocytic Aβ production, could redefine how we think about developing therapeutics for AD. PMID:29237809

  8. Astrocytes, Synapses and Brain Function: A Computational Approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadkarni, Suhita

    2006-03-01

    Modulation of synaptic reliability is one of the leading mechanisms involved in long- term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) and therefore has implications in information processing in the brain. A recently discovered mechanism for modulating synaptic reliability critically involves recruitments of astrocytes - star- shaped cells that outnumber the neurons in most parts of the central nervous system. Astrocytes until recently were thought to be subordinate cells merely participating in supporting neuronal functions. New evidence, however, made available by advances in imaging technology has changed the way we envision the role of these cells in synaptic transmission and as modulator of neuronal excitability. We put forward a novel mathematical framework based on the biophysics of the bidirectional neuron-astrocyte interactions that quantitatively accounts for two distinct experimental manifestation of recruitment of astrocytes in synaptic transmission: a) transformation of a low fidelity synapse transforms into a high fidelity synapse and b) enhanced postsynaptic spontaneous currents when astrocytes are activated. Such a framework is not only useful for modeling neuronal dynamics in a realistic environment but also provides a conceptual basis for interpreting experiments. Based on this modeling framework, we explore the role of astrocytes for neuronal network behavior such as synchrony and correlations and compare with experimental data from cultured networks.

  9. Leptin receptor mRNA in rat brain astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Hsuchou, Hung; Pan, Weihong; Barnes, Maria J.; Kastin, Abba J.

    2009-01-01

    We recently reported that mouse astrocytes express leptin receptors (ObR), and that obesity induces upregulation of astrocytic ObR. To provide further evidence of the importance of astrocytic ObR expression, we performed double-labeling fluorescent in-situ hybridization (FISH) and immunohistochemistry in the rat hypothalamus. Laser confocal microscopic image analysis showed that ObR mRNA was present in glial fibrillary acidic protein (+) cells that show distinctive astrocytic morphology as well as in neurons. In addition to the presence of ObR mRNA, ObR protein was shown in both astrocytes and neurons in the rat hypothalamus by double-labeling immunohistochemistry. In cultured rat C6 astrocytoma cells treated with different doses of lipopolysaccharide for 6 h, the mRNA for ObRa or ObRb did not show significant changes, as measured by quantitative RT-PCR. However, the protein expression of both ObRa and ObRb, determined by western blotting, was increased after the C6 cells were treated with either lipopolysaccharide or tumor necrosis factor-α. The results indicate that astrocytic ObR expression is present in rats as well as mice, and that it probably plays a role in the neuroinflammatory response. PMID:19747514

  10. Astrocytic modulation of blood brain barrier: perspectives on Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Cabezas, Ricardo; Avila, Marcos; Gonzalez, Janneth; El-Bachá, Ramon Santos; Báez, Eliana; García-Segura, Luis Miguel; Jurado Coronel, Juan Camilo; Capani, Francisco; Cardona-Gomez, Gloria Patricia; Barreto, George E

    2014-01-01

    The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a tightly regulated interface in the Central Nervous System (CNS) that regulates the exchange of molecules in and out from the brain thus maintaining the CNS homeostasis. It is mainly composed of endothelial cells (ECs), pericytes and astrocytes that create a neurovascular unit (NVU) with the adjacent neurons. Astrocytes are essential for the formation and maintenance of the BBB by providing secreted factors that lead to the adequate association between the cells of the BBB and the formation of strong tight junctions. Under neurological disorders, such as chronic cerebral ischemia, brain trauma, Epilepsy, Alzheimer and Parkinson's Diseases, a disruption of the BBB takes place, involving a lost in the permeability of the barrier and phenotypical changes in both the ECs and astrocytes. In this aspect, it has been established that the process of reactive gliosis is a common feature of astrocytes during BBB disruption, which has a detrimental effect on the barrier function and a subsequent damage in neuronal survival. In this review we discuss the implications of astrocyte functions in the protection of the BBB, and in the development of Parkinson's disease (PD) and related disorders. Additionally, we highlight the current and future strategies in astrocyte protection aimed at the development of restorative therapies for the BBB in pathological conditions.

  11. Fingolimod Phosphate Inhibits Astrocyte Inflammatory Activity in Mucolipidosis IV.

    PubMed

    Weinstock, Laura; Furness, Amanda M; Herron, Shawn; Smith, Sierra S; Sankar, Sitara; DeRosa, Samantha G; Gao, Dadi; Mepyans, Molly E; Scotto Rosato, Anna; Medina, Diego L; Vardi, Ayelet; Ferreira, Natalia S; Cho, Soo Min; Futerman, Anthony H; Slaugenhaupt, Susan A; Wood, Levi B; Grishchuk, Yulia

    2018-05-16

    Mucolipidosis IV (MLIV) is an orphan neurodevelopmental disease that causes severe neurologic dysfunction and loss of vision. Currently there is no therapy for MLIV. It is caused by loss of function of the lysosomal channel mucolipin-1, also known as TRPML1. Knockout of the Mcoln1 gene in a mouse model mirrors clinical and neuropathological signs in humans. Using this model, we previously observed robust activation of microglia and astrocytes in early symptomatic stages of disease. Here we investigate the consequence of mucolipin-1 loss on astrocyte inflammatory activation in vivo and in vitro and apply a pharmacological approach to restore Mcoln1-/- astrocyte homeostasis using a clinically approved immunomodulator, fingolimod. We found that Mcoln1-/- mice over-express numerous pro-inflammatory cytokines, some of which were also over-expressed in astrocyte cultures. Changes in the cytokine profile in Mcoln1-/- astrocytes are concomitant with changes in phospho-protein signaling, including activation of PI3K/Akt and MAPK pathways. Fingolimod promotes cytokine homeostasis, down-regulates signaling within the PI3K/Akt and MAPK pathways, and restores the lysosomal compartment in Mcoln1-/- astrocytes. These data suggest that fingolimod is a promising candidate for preclinical evaluation in our MLIV mouse model, which, in case of success, can be rapidly translated into clinical trial.

  12. Astrocytes regulate heterogeneity of presynaptic strengths in hippocampal networks

    PubMed Central

    Letellier, Mathieu; Park, Yun Kyung; Chater, Thomas E.; Chipman, Peter H.; Gautam, Sunita Ghimire; Oshima-Takago, Tomoko; Goda, Yukiko

    2016-01-01

    Dendrites are neuronal structures specialized for receiving and processing information through their many synaptic inputs. How input strengths are modified across dendrites in ways that are crucial for synaptic integration and plasticity remains unclear. We examined in single hippocampal neurons the mechanism of heterosynaptic interactions and the heterogeneity of synaptic strengths of pyramidal cell inputs. Heterosynaptic presynaptic plasticity that counterbalances input strengths requires N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) and astrocytes. Importantly, this mechanism is shared with the mechanism for maintaining highly heterogeneous basal presynaptic strengths, which requires astrocyte Ca2+ signaling involving NMDAR activation, astrocyte membrane depolarization, and L-type Ca2+ channels. Intracellular infusion of NMDARs or Ca2+-channel blockers into astrocytes, conditionally ablating the GluN1 NMDAR subunit, or optogenetically hyperpolarizing astrocytes with archaerhodopsin promotes homogenization of convergent presynaptic inputs. Our findings support the presence of an astrocyte-dependent cellular mechanism that enhances the heterogeneity of presynaptic strengths of convergent connections, which may help boost the computational power of dendrites. PMID:27118849

  13. Astrocytes as gate-keepers in optic nerve regeneration--a mini-review.

    PubMed

    García, Dana M; Koke, Joseph R

    2009-02-01

    Animals that develop without extra-embryonic membranes (anamniotes--fish, amphibians) have impressive regenerative capacity, even to the extent of replacing entire limbs. In contrast, animals that develop within extra-embryonic membranes (amniotes--reptiles, birds, mammals) have limited capacity for regeneration as adults, particularly in the central nervous system (CNS). Much is known about the process of nerve development in fish and mammals and about regeneration after lesions in the CNS in fish and mammals. Because the retina of the eye and optic nerve are functionally part of the brain and are accessible in fish, frogs, and mice, optic nerve lesion and regeneration (ONR) has been extensively used as a model system for study of CNS nerve regeneration. When the optic nerve of a mouse is severed, the axons leading into the brain degenerate. Initially, the cut end of the axons on the proximal, eye-side of the injury sprout neurites which begin to grow into the lesion. Simultaneously, astrocytes of the optic nerve become activated to initiate wound repair as a first step in reestablishing the structural integrity of the optic nerve. This activation appears to initiate a cascade of molecular signals resulting in apoptotic cell death of the retinal ganglion cells axons of which make up the neural component of the optic nerve; regeneration fails and the injury is permanent. Evidence specifically implicating astrocytes comes from studies showing selective poisoning of astrocytes at the optic nerve lesion, along with activation of a gene whose product blocks apoptosis in retinal ganglion cells, creates conditions favorable to neurites sprouting from the cut proximal stump, growing through the lesion and into the distal portion of the injured nerve, eventually reaching appropriate targets in the brain. In anamniotes, astrocytes ostensibly present no such obstacle since optic nerve regeneration occurs without intervention; however, no systematic study of glial involvement

  14. Simple and Inexpensive Paper-Based Astrocyte Co-culture to Improve Survival of Low-Density Neuronal Networks

    PubMed Central

    Aebersold, Mathias J.; Thompson-Steckel, Greta; Joutang, Adriane; Schneider, Moritz; Burchert, Conrad; Forró, Csaba; Weydert, Serge; Han, Hana; Vörös, János

    2018-01-01

    Bottom-up neuroscience aims to engineer well-defined networks of neurons to investigate the functions of the brain. By reducing the complexity of the brain to achievable target questions, such in vitro bioassays better control experimental variables and can serve as a versatile tool for fundamental and pharmacological research. Astrocytes are a cell type critical to neuronal function, and the addition of astrocytes to neuron cultures can improve the quality of in vitro assays. Here, we present cellulose as an astrocyte culture substrate. Astrocytes cultured on the cellulose fiber matrix thrived and formed a dense 3D network. We devised a novel co-culture platform by suspending the easy-to-handle astrocytic paper cultures above neuronal networks of low densities typically needed for bottom-up neuroscience. There was significant improvement in neuronal viability after 5 days in vitro at densities ranging from 50,000 cells/cm2 down to isolated cells at 1,000 cells/cm2. Cultures exhibited spontaneous spiking even at the very low densities, with a significantly greater spike frequency per cell compared to control mono-cultures. Applying the co-culture platform to an engineered network of neurons on a patterned substrate resulted in significantly improved viability and almost doubled the density of live cells. Lastly, the shape of the cellulose substrate can easily be customized to a wide range of culture vessels, making the platform versatile for different applications that will further enable research in bottom-up neuroscience and drug development. PMID:29535595

  15. Both neurons and astrocytes exhibited tetrodotoxin-resistant metabotropic glutamate receptor-dependent spontaneous slow Ca2+ oscillations in striatum.

    PubMed

    Tamura, Atsushi; Yamada, Naohiro; Yaguchi, Yuichi; Machida, Yoshio; Mori, Issei; Osanai, Makoto

    2014-01-01

    The striatum plays an important role in linking cortical activity to basal ganglia outputs. Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) are densely expressed in the medium spiny projection neurons and may be a therapeutic target for Parkinson's disease. The group I mGluRs are known to modulate the intracellular Ca(2+) signaling. To characterize Ca(2+) signaling in striatal cells, spontaneous cytoplasmic Ca(2+) transients were examined in acute slice preparations from transgenic mice expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) in the astrocytes. In both the GFP-negative cells (putative-neurons) and astrocytes of the striatum, spontaneous slow and long-lasting intracellular Ca(2+) transients (referred to as slow Ca(2+) oscillations), which lasted up to approximately 200 s, were found. Neither the inhibition of action potentials nor ionotropic glutamate receptors blocked the slow Ca(2+) oscillation. Depletion of the intracellular Ca(2+) store and the blockade of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors greatly reduced the transient rate of the slow Ca(2+) oscillation, and the application of an antagonist against mGluR5 also blocked the slow Ca(2+) oscillation in both putative-neurons and astrocytes. Thus, the mGluR5-inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate signal cascade is the primary contributor to the slow Ca(2+) oscillation in both putative-neurons and astrocytes. The slow Ca(2+) oscillation features multicellular synchrony, and both putative-neurons and astrocytes participate in the synchronous activity. Therefore, the mGluR5-dependent slow Ca(2+) oscillation may involve in the neuron-glia interaction in the striatum.

  16. Astrocyte-specific expression of human T-cell lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) Tax: induction of tumor necrosis factor alpha and susceptibility to lysis by CD8+ HTLV-1-specific cytotoxic T cells.

    PubMed

    Méndez, E; Kawanishi, T; Clemens, K; Siomi, H; Soldan, S S; Calabresi, P; Brady, J; Jacobson, S

    1997-12-01

    Human T-cell lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) is associated with a chronic neurological disease termed HTLV-1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraperesis (HAM/TSP). Although the pathogenesis of this disease remains to be elucidated, the evidence suggests that immunopathological mechanisms are involved. Since HTLV-1 tax mRNA was colocalized with glial acidic fibrillary protein, a marker for astrocytes, we developed an in vitro model to assess whether HTLV-1 infection activates astrocytes to secrete cytokines or present viral immunodominant epitopes to virus-specific T cells. Two human astrocytic glioma cell lines, U251 and U373, were transfected with the 3' portion of the HTLV-1 genome and with the HTLV-1 tax gene under astrocyte-specific promoter control. In this study, we report that Tax-expressing astrocytic glioma transfectants activate the expression of tumor necrosis factor alpha mRNA in vitro. Furthermore, these Tax-expressing glioma transfectants can serve as immunological targets for HTLV-1-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL). We propose that these events could contribute to the neuropathology of HAM/TSP, since infected astrocytes can become a source for inflammatory cytokines upon HTLV-1 infection and serve as targets for HTLV-1-specific CTL, resulting in parenchymal damage by direct lysis and/or cytokine release.

  17. Electrodiffusive Model for Astrocytic and Neuronal Ion Concentration Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Halnes, Geir; Østby, Ivar; Pettersen, Klas H.; Omholt, Stig W.; Einevoll, Gaute T.

    2013-01-01

    The cable equation is a proper framework for modeling electrical neural signalling that takes place at a timescale at which the ionic concentrations vary little. However, in neural tissue there are also key dynamic processes that occur at longer timescales. For example, endured periods of intense neural signaling may cause the local extracellular K+-concentration to increase by several millimolars. The clearance of this excess K+ depends partly on diffusion in the extracellular space, partly on local uptake by astrocytes, and partly on intracellular transport (spatial buffering) within astrocytes. These processes, that take place at the time scale of seconds, demand a mathematical description able to account for the spatiotemporal variations in ion concentrations as well as the subsequent effects of these variations on the membrane potential. Here, we present a general electrodiffusive formalism for modeling of ion concentration dynamics in a one-dimensional geometry, including both the intra- and extracellular domains. Based on the Nernst-Planck equations, this formalism ensures that the membrane potential and ion concentrations are in consistency, it ensures global particle/charge conservation and it accounts for diffusion and concentration dependent variations in resistivity. We apply the formalism to a model of astrocytes exchanging ions with the extracellular space. The simulations show that K+-removal from high-concentration regions is driven by a local depolarization of the astrocyte membrane, which concertedly (i) increases the local astrocytic uptake of K+, (ii) suppresses extracellular transport of K+, (iii) increases axial transport of K+ within astrocytes, and (iv) facilitates astrocytic relase of K+ in regions where the extracellular concentration is low. Together, these mechanisms seem to provide a robust regulatory scheme for shielding the extracellular space from excess K+. PMID:24367247

  18. Effects of aspartame metabolites on astrocytes and neurons.

    PubMed

    Rycerz, Karol; Jaworska-Adamu, Jadwiga Elżbieta

    2013-01-01

    Aspartame, a widespread sweetener used in many food products, is considered as a highly hazardous compound. Aspartame was discovered in 1965 and raises a lot of controversy up to date. Astrocytes are glial cells, the presence and functions of which are closely connected with the central nervous system (CNS). The aim of this article is to demonstrate the direct and indirect role of astrocytes participating in the harmful effects of aspartame metabolites on neurons. The artificial sweetener is broken down into phenylalanine (50%), aspartic acid (40%) and methanol (10%) during metabolism in the body. The excess of phenylalanine blocks the transport of important amino acids to the brain contributing to reduced levels of dopamine and serotonin. Astrocytes directly affect the transport of this amino acid and also indirectly by modulation of carriers in the endothelium. Aspartic acid at high concentrations is a toxin that causes hyperexcitability of neurons and is also a precursor of other excitatory amino acid - glutamates. Their excess in quantity and lack of astrocytic uptake induces excitotoxicity and leads to the degeneration of astrocytes and neurons. The methanol metabolites cause CNS depression, vision disorders and other symptoms leading ultimately to metabolic acidosis and coma. Astrocytes do not play a significant role in methanol poisoning due to a permanent consumption of large amounts of aspartame. Despite intense speculations about the carcinogenicity of aspartame, the latest studies show that its metabolite - diketopiperazine - is cancirogenic in the CNS. It contributes to the formation of tumors in the CNS such as gliomas, medulloblastomas and meningiomas. Glial cells are the main source of tumors, which can be caused inter alia by the sweetener in the brain. On the one hand the action of astrocytes during aspartame poisoning may be advantageous for neuro-protection while on the other it may intensify the destruction of neurons. The role of the glia in

  19. Hippocampal Astrocytes in Migrating and Wintering Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla.

    PubMed

    Carvalho-Paulo, Dario; de Morais Magalhães, Nara G; de Almeida Miranda, Diego; Diniz, Daniel G; Henrique, Ediely P; Moraes, Isis A M; Pereira, Patrick D C; de Melo, Mauro A D; de Lima, Camila M; de Oliveira, Marcus A; Guerreiro-Diniz, Cristovam; Sherry, David F; Diniz, Cristovam W P

    2017-01-01

    Seasonal migratory birds return to the same breeding and wintering grounds year after year, and migratory long-distance shorebirds are good examples of this. These tasks require learning and long-term spatial memory abilities that are integrated into a navigational system for repeatedly locating breeding, wintering, and stopover sites. Previous investigations focused on the neurobiological basis of hippocampal plasticity and numerical estimates of hippocampal neurogenesis in birds but only a few studies investigated potential contributions of glial cells to hippocampal-dependent tasks related to migration. Here we hypothesized that the astrocytes of migrating and wintering birds may exhibit significant morphological and numerical differences connected to the long-distance flight. We used as a model the semipalmated sandpiper Calidris pusilla , that migrates from northern Canada and Alaska to South America. Before the transatlantic non-stop long-distance component of their flight, the birds make a stopover at the Bay of Fundy in Canada. To test our hypothesis, we estimated total numbers and compared the three-dimensional (3-D) morphological features of adult C. pusilla astrocytes captured in the Bay of Fundy ( n = 249 cells) with those from birds captured in the coastal region of Bragança, Brazil, during the wintering period ( n = 250 cells). Optical fractionator was used to estimate the number of astrocytes and for 3-D reconstructions we used hierarchical cluster analysis. Both morphological phenotypes showed reduced morphological complexity after the long-distance non-stop flight, but the reduction in complexity was much greater in Type I than in Type II astrocytes. Coherently, we also found a significant reduction in the total number of astrocytes after the transatlantic flight. Taken together these findings suggest that the long-distance non-stop flight altered significantly the astrocytes population and that morphologically distinct astrocytes may play

  20. Expression of Gls and Gls2 glutaminase isoforms in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Cardona, Carolina; Sánchez-Mejías, Elisabeth; Dávila, José C; Martín-Rufián, Mercedes; Campos-Sandoval, José A; Vitorica, Javier; Alonso, Francisco J; Matés, José M; Segura, Juan A; Norenberg, Michael D; Rama Rao, Kakulavarapu V; Jayakumar, Arumugan R; Gutiérrez, Antonia; Márquez, Javier

    2015-03-01

    The expression of glutaminase in glial cells has been a controversial issue and matter of debate for many years. Actually, glutaminase is essentially considered as a neuronal marker in brain. Astrocytes are endowed with efficient and high capacity transport systems to recapture synaptic glutamate which seems to be consistent with the absence of glutaminase in these glial cells. In this work, a comprehensive study was devised to elucidate expression of glutaminase in neuroglia and, more concretely, in astrocytes. Immunocytochemistry in rat and human brain tissues employing isoform-specific antibodies revealed expression of both Gls and Gls2 glutaminase isozymes in glutamatergic and GABAergic neuronal populations as well as in astrocytes. Nevertheless, there was a different subcellular distribution: Gls isoform was always present in mitochondria while Gls2 appeared in two different locations, mitochondria and nucleus. Confocal microscopy and double immunofluorescence labeling in cultured astrocytes confirmed the same pattern previously seen in brain tissue samples. Astrocytic glutaminase expression was also assessed at the mRNA level, real-time quantitative RT-PCR detected transcripts of four glutaminase isozymes but with marked differences on their absolute copy number: the predominance of Gls isoforms over Gls2 transcripts was remarkable (ratio of 144:1). Finally, we proved that astrocytic glutaminase proteins possess enzymatic activity by in situ activity staining: concrete populations of astrocytes were labeled in the cortex, cerebellum and hippocampus of rat brain demonstrating functional catalytic activity. These results are relevant for the stoichiometry of the Glu/Gln cycle at the tripartite synapse and suggest novel functions for these classical metabolic enzymes. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Hippocampal Astrocytes in Migrating and Wintering Semipalmated Sandpiper Calidris pusilla

    PubMed Central

    Carvalho-Paulo, Dario; de Morais Magalhães, Nara G.; de Almeida Miranda, Diego; Diniz, Daniel G.; Henrique, Ediely P.; Moraes, Isis A. M.; Pereira, Patrick D. C.; de Melo, Mauro A. D.; de Lima, Camila M.; de Oliveira, Marcus A.; Guerreiro-Diniz, Cristovam; Sherry, David F.; Diniz, Cristovam W. P.

    2018-01-01

    Seasonal migratory birds return to the same breeding and wintering grounds year after year, and migratory long-distance shorebirds are good examples of this. These tasks require learning and long-term spatial memory abilities that are integrated into a navigational system for repeatedly locating breeding, wintering, and stopover sites. Previous investigations focused on the neurobiological basis of hippocampal plasticity and numerical estimates of hippocampal neurogenesis in birds but only a few studies investigated potential contributions of glial cells to hippocampal-dependent tasks related to migration. Here we hypothesized that the astrocytes of migrating and wintering birds may exhibit significant morphological and numerical differences connected to the long-distance flight. We used as a model the semipalmated sandpiper Calidris pusilla, that migrates from northern Canada and Alaska to South America. Before the transatlantic non-stop long-distance component of their flight, the birds make a stopover at the Bay of Fundy in Canada. To test our hypothesis, we estimated total numbers and compared the three-dimensional (3-D) morphological features of adult C. pusilla astrocytes captured in the Bay of Fundy (n = 249 cells) with those from birds captured in the coastal region of Bragança, Brazil, during the wintering period (n = 250 cells). Optical fractionator was used to estimate the number of astrocytes and for 3-D reconstructions we used hierarchical cluster analysis. Both morphological phenotypes showed reduced morphological complexity after the long-distance non-stop flight, but the reduction in complexity was much greater in Type I than in Type II astrocytes. Coherently, we also found a significant reduction in the total number of astrocytes after the transatlantic flight. Taken together these findings suggest that the long-distance non-stop flight altered significantly the astrocytes population and that morphologically distinct astrocytes may play different

  2. Palmitoylethanolamide Blunts Amyloid-β42-Induced Astrocyte Activation and Improves Neuronal Survival in Primary Mouse Cortical Astrocyte-Neuron Co-Cultures.

    PubMed

    Beggiato, Sarah; Borelli, Andrea Celeste; Ferraro, Luca; Tanganelli, Sergio; Antonelli, Tiziana; Tomasini, Maria Cristina

    2018-01-01

    Based on the pivotal role of astrocytes in brain homeostasis and the strong metabolic cooperation existing between neurons and astrocytes, it has been suggested that astrocytic dysfunctions might cause and/or contribute to neuroinflammation and neurodegenerative processes. Therapeutic approaches aimed at both neuroprotection and neuroinflammation reduction may prove particularly effective in slowing the progression of these diseases. The endogenous lipid mediator palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) displayed neuroprotective and anti(neuro)inflammatory properties, and demonstrated interesting potential as a novel treatment for Alzheimer's disease. We firstly evaluated whether astrocytes could participate in regulating the Aβ42-induced neuronal damage, by using primary mouse astrocytes cell cultures and mixed astrocytes-neurons cultures. Furthermore, the possible protective effects of PEA against Aβ42-induced neuronal toxicity have also been investigated by evaluating neuronal viability, apoptosis, and morphometric parameters. The presence of astrocytes pre-exposed to Aβ42 (0.5μM; 24 h) induced a reduction of neuronal viability in primary mouse astrocytes-neurons co-cultures. Furthermore, under these experimental conditions, an increase in the number of neuronal apoptotic nuclei and a decrease in the number of MAP-2 positive neurons were observed. Finally, astrocytic Aβ42 pre-exposure induced an increase in the number of neurite aggregations/100μm as compared to control (i.e., untreated) astrocytes-neurons co-cultures. These effects were not observed in neurons cultured in the presence of astrocytes pre-exposed to PEA (0.1μM), applied 1 h before and maintained during Aβ42 treatment. Astrocytes contribute to Aβ42-induced neurotoxicity and PEA, by blunting Aβ42-induced astrocyte activation, improved neuronal survival in mouse astrocyte-neuron co-cultures.

  3. Medium-chain fatty acids inhibit mitochondrial metabolism in astrocytes promoting astrocyte-neuron lactate and ketone body shuttle systems.

    PubMed

    Thevenet, Jonathan; De Marchi, Umberto; Domingo, Jaime Santo; Christinat, Nicolas; Bultot, Laurent; Lefebvre, Gregory; Sakamoto, Kei; Descombes, Patrick; Masoodi, Mojgan; Wiederkehr, Andreas

    2016-05-01

    Medium-chain triglycerides have been used as part of a ketogenic diet effective in reducing epileptic episodes. The health benefits of the derived medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) are thought to result from the stimulation of liver ketogenesis providing fuel for the brain. We tested whether MCFAs have direct effects on energy metabolism in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived human astrocytes and neurons. Using single-cell imaging, we observed an acute pronounced reduction of the mitochondrial electrical potential and a concomitant drop of the NAD(P)H signal in astrocytes, but not in neurons. Despite the observed effects on mitochondrial function, MCFAs did not lower intracellular ATP levels or activate the energy sensor AMP-activated protein kinase. ATP concentrations in astrocytes were unaltered, even when blocking the respiratory chain, suggesting compensation through accelerated glycolysis. The MCFA decanoic acid (300 μM) promoted glycolysis and augmented lactate formation by 49.6%. The shorter fatty acid octanoic acid (300 μM) did not affect glycolysis but increased the rates of astrocyte ketogenesis 2.17-fold compared with that of control cells. MCFAs may have brain health benefits through the modulation of astrocyte metabolism leading to activation of shuttle systems that provide fuel to neighboring neurons in the form of lactate and ketone bodies.-Thevenet, J., De Marchi, U., Santo Domingo, J., Christinat, N., Bultot, L., Lefebvre, G., Sakamoto, K., Descombes, P., Masoodi, M., Wiederkehr, A. Medium-chain fatty acids inhibit mitochondrial metabolism in astrocytes promoting astrocyte-neuron lactate and ketone body shuttle systems. © FASEB.

  4. The common insecticides cyfluthrin and chlorpyrifos alter the expression of a subset of genes with diverse functions in primary human astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Mense, Sarah M; Sengupta, Amitabha; Lan, Changgui; Zhou, Mei; Bentsman, Galina; Volsky, David J; Whyatt, Robin M; Perera, Frederica P; Zhang, Li

    2006-09-01

    Given the widespread use of insecticides in the environment, it is important to perform studies evaluating their potential effects on humans. Organophosphate insecticides, such as chlorpyrifos, are being phased out; however, the use of pyrethroids in household pest control is increasing. While chlorpyrifos is relatively well studied, much less is known about the potential neurotoxicity of cyfluthrin and other pyrethroids. To gain insights into the neurotoxicity of cyfluthrin, we compared and evaluated the toxicity profiles of chlorpyrifos and cyfluthrin in primary human fetal astrocytes. We found that at the same concentrations, cyfluthrin exerts as great as, or greater toxic effects on the growth, survival, and proper functioning of human astrocytes. By using microarray gene expression profiling, we systematically identified and compared the potential molecular targets of chlorpyrifos and cyfluthrin, at a genome-wide scale. We found that chlorpyrifos and cyfluthrin affect a similar number of transcripts. These targets include molecular chaperones, signal transducers, transcriptional regulators, transporters, and those involved in behavior and development. Further computational and biochemical analyses show that cyfluthrin and chlorpyrifos upregulate certain targets of the interferon-gamma and insulin-signaling pathways and that they increase the protein levels of activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, a key component of insulin signaling; interleukin 6, a key inflammatory mediator; and glial fibrillary acidic protein, a marker of inflammatory astrocyte activation. These results suggest that inflammatory activation of astrocytes might be an important mechanism underlying neurotoxicity of both chlorpyrifos and cyfluthrin.

  5. Astrocyte and Neuronal Plasticity in the Somatosensory System

    PubMed Central

    Sims, Robert E.; Butcher, John B.; Parri, H. Rheinallt; Glazewski, Stanislaw

    2015-01-01

    Changing the whisker complement on a rodent's snout can lead to two forms of experience-dependent plasticity (EDP) in the neurons of the barrel cortex, where whiskers are somatotopically represented. One form, termed coding plasticity, concerns changes in synaptic transmission and connectivity between neurons. This is thought to underlie learning and memory processes and so adaptation to a changing environment. The second, called homeostatic plasticity, serves to maintain a restricted dynamic range of neuronal activity thus preventing its saturation or total downregulation. Current explanatory models of cortical EDP are almost exclusively neurocentric. However, in recent years, increasing evidence has emerged on the role of astrocytes in brain function, including plasticity. Indeed, astrocytes appear as necessary partners of neurons at the core of the mechanisms of coding and homeostatic plasticity recorded in neurons. In addition to neuronal plasticity, several different forms of astrocytic plasticity have recently been discovered. They extend from changes in receptor expression and dynamic changes in morphology to alteration in gliotransmitter release. It is however unclear how astrocytic plasticity contributes to the neuronal EDP. Here, we review the known and possible roles for astrocytes in the barrel cortex, including its plasticity. PMID:26345481

  6. THE ENZYMATIC RESPONSE OF ASTROCYTES TO VARIOUS IONS IN VITRO

    PubMed Central

    Friede, Reinhard L.

    1964-01-01

    The effect of environmental ion concentration on the enzyme activity of astrocytes was investigated in tissue cultures of rat cerebral cortex. It was found that the oxidative enzymatic activity (succinic dehydrogenase, DPN-diaphorase, and several other enzymes) of astrocytes depended on the concentration of NaCl in the environment. This response was not specific for NaCl, but was also elicited by MgCl2 and LiCl; the response was less consistent, and often questionable for KCl. However, only NaCl could elicit enzymatic changes in astrocytes at concentrations known to be present in a living organism. Astrocytes were the only cells which responded this way; it appeared that the foot-plates were particularly involved in the response since increase of enzyme activity occurred earlier in the foot-plates than in the perikarya. It was concluded that astrocytes are metabolically involved in the maintenance of the ionic and osmotic environment of the central nervous system, particularly in regard to the active transport of sodium. PMID:14105217

  7. Investigation on the suitable pressure for the preservation of astrocyte

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sotome, S.; Nakajima, K.; Yoshimura, Y.; Shimizu, A.

    2010-03-01

    The effects of pressure on the survival rate of astrocytes in growth medium (DMEM) were investigated at room temperature and at 4°C, in an effort to establish the best conditions for the preservation. Survival rate at 4°C was found to be higher than that at room temperature. The survival rate of astrocytes preserved for 4 days at 4°C increased with increasing pressure up to 1.6 MPa, but decreased with increasing pressure above 1.6 MPa. At 10 MPa, all astrocytes died. The survival rate of cultured astrocytes decreased significantly following pressurization for 2 hours and the subsequent preservation for 2 days at atmospheric pressure. Therefore, it is necessary to maintain pressure when preserving astrocytes. These results indicate that the cells can be stored at 4°C under pressurization without freezing and without adding cryoprotective agents. Moreover, it may be possible to use this procedure as a new preservation method when cryopreservation is impractical.

  8. Morphometric analysis of astrocytes in brainstem respiratory regions.

    PubMed

    Sheikhbahaei, Shahriar; Morris, Brian; Collina, Jared; Anjum, Sommer; Znati, Sami; Gamarra, Julio; Zhang, Ruli; Gourine, Alexander V; Smith, Jeffrey C

    2018-06-11

    Astrocytes, the most abundant and structurally complex glial cells of the central nervous system, are proposed to play an important role in modulating the activities of neuronal networks, including respiratory rhythm-generating circuits of the preBötzinger complex (preBötC) located in the ventrolateral medulla of the brainstem. However, structural properties of astrocytes residing within different brainstem regions are unknown. In this study astrocytes in the preBötC, an intermediate reticular formation (IRF) region with respiratory-related function, and a region of the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) in adult rats were reconstructed and their morphological features were compared. Detailed morphological analysis revealed that preBötC astrocytes are structurally more complex than those residing within the functionally distinct neighboring IRF region, or the NTS, located at the dorsal aspect of the medulla oblongata. Structural analyses of the brainstem microvasculature indicated no significant regional differences in vascular properties. We hypothesize that high morphological complexity of preBötC astrocytes reflects their functional role in providing structural/metabolic support and modulation of the key neuronal circuits essential for breathing, as well as constraints imposed by arrangements of associated neurons and/or other local structural features of the brainstem parenchyma. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Conditions and constraints for astrocyte calcium signaling in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway

    PubMed Central

    Haustein, Martin D.; Kracun, Sebastian; Lu, Xiao-Hong; Shih, Tiffany; Jackson-Weaver, Olan; Tong, Xiaoping; Xu, Ji; Yang, X. William; O'Dell, Thomas J.; Marvin, Jonathan S.; Ellisman, Mark H.; Bushong, Eric A.; Looger, Loren L.; Khakh, Baljit S.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The spatiotemporal activities of astrocyte Ca2+ signaling in mature neuronal circuits remain unclear. We used genetically encoded Ca2+ and glutamate indicators as well as pharmacogenetic and electrical control of neurotransmitter release to explore astrocyte activity in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway. Our data revealed numerous localised spontaneous Ca2+ signals in astrocyte branches and territories, but these were not driven by neuronal activity or glutamate. Moreover, evoked astrocyte Ca2+ signaling changed linearly with the number of mossy fiber action potentials. Under these settings astrocyte responses were global, suppressed by neurotransmitter clearance and mediated by glutamate and GABA. Thus, astrocyte engagement in the fully developed mossy fiber pathway was slow and territorial, contrary to that frequently proposed for astrocytes within microcircuits. We show that astrocyte Ca2+ signaling functionally segregates large volumes of neuropil and that these transients are not suited for responding to, or regulating, single synapses in the mossy fiber pathway. PMID:24742463

  10. Methylene Blue Protects Astrocytes against Glucose Oxygen Deprivation by Improving Cellular Respiration

    PubMed Central

    Roy Choudhury, Gourav; Winters, Ali; Rich, Ryan M.; Ryou, Myoung-Gwi; Gryczynski, Zygmunt; Yuan, Fang; Yang, Shao-Hua; Liu, Ran

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes outnumber neurons and serve many metabolic and trophic functions in the mammalian brain. Preserving astrocytes is critical for normal brain function as well as for protecting the brain against various insults. Our previous studies have indicated that methylene blue (MB) functions as an alternative electron carrier and enhances brain metabolism. In addition, MB has been shown to be protective against neurodegeneration and brain injury. In the current study, we investigated the protective role of MB in astrocytes. Cell viability assays showed that MB treatment significantly protected primary astrocytes from oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) & reoxygenation induced cell death. We also studied the effect of MB on cellular oxygen and glucose metabolism in primary astrocytes following OGD-reoxygenation injury. MB treatment significantly increased cellular oxygen consumption, glucose uptake and ATP production in primary astrocytes. In conclusion our study demonstrated that MB protects astrocytes against OGD-reoxygenation injury by improving astrocyte cellular respiration. PMID:25848957

  11. Preclinical Studies of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-10-01

    Pluripotent Stem Cell -Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Nicholas J. Maragakis, M.D...Pluripotent Stem Cell -Derived Astrocyte Transplantation in ALS 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-10-1-0520 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d...into astrocytes following transplantation. 15. SUBJECT TERMS Stem Cells , iPS cells, astrocytes, familial ALS 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF

  12. Sex Differences and Laterality in Astrocyte Number and Complexity in the Adult Rat Medial Amygdala

    PubMed Central

    JOHNSON, RYAN T.; BREEDLOVE, S. MARC; JORDAN, CYNTHIA L.

    2008-01-01

    The posterodorsal portion of the medial amygdala (MePD) is sexually dimorphic in several rodent species. In several other brain nuclei, astrocytes change morphology in response to steroid hormones. We visualized MePD astrocytes using glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunocytochemistry. We compared the number and process complexity of MePD astrocytes in adult wildtype male and female rats and testicular feminized mutant (TFM) male rats that lack functional androgen receptors (ARs) to determine whether MePD astrocytes are sexually differentiated and whether ARs have a role. Unbiased stereological methods revealed laterality and sex differences in MePD astrocyte number and complexity. The right MePD contained more astrocytes than the left in all three genotypes, and the number of astrocytes was also sexually differentiated in the right MePD, with males having more astrocytes than females. In contrast, the left MePD contained more complex astrocytes than did the right MePD in all three genotypes, and males had more complex astrocytes than females in this hemisphere. TFM males were comparable to wildtype females, having fewer astrocytes on the right and simpler astrocytes on the left than do wildtype males. Taken together, these results demonstrate that astrocytes are sexually dimorphic in the adult MePD and that the nature of the sex difference is hemisphere-dependent: a sex difference in astrocyte number in the right MePD and a sex difference in astrocyte complexity in the left MePD. Moreover, functional ARs appear to be critical in establishing these sex differences in MePD astrocyte morphology. PMID:18853427

  13. The Indispensable Roles of Microglia and Astrocytes during Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Reemst, Kitty; Noctor, Stephen C.; Lucassen, Paul J.; Hol, Elly M.

    2016-01-01

    Glia are essential for brain functioning during development and in the adult brain. Here, we discuss the various roles of both microglia and astrocytes, and their interactions during brain development. Although both cells are fundamentally different in origin and function, they often affect the same developmental processes such as neuro-/gliogenesis, angiogenesis, axonal outgrowth, synaptogenesis and synaptic pruning. Due to their important instructive roles in these processes, dysfunction of microglia or astrocytes during brain development could contribute to neurodevelopmental disorders and potentially even late-onset neuropathology. A better understanding of the origin, differentiation process and developmental functions of microglia and astrocytes will help to fully appreciate their role both in the developing as well as in the adult brain, in health and disease. PMID:27877121

  14. Reactive astrocyte COX2-PGE2 production inhibits oligodendrocyte maturation in neonatal white matter injury.

    PubMed

    Shiow, Lawrence R; Favrais, Geraldine; Schirmer, Lucas; Schang, Anne-Laure; Cipriani, Sara; Andres, Christian; Wright, Jaclyn N; Nobuta, Hiroko; Fleiss, Bobbi; Gressens, Pierre; Rowitch, David H

    2017-12-01

    Inflammation is a major risk factor for neonatal white matter injury (NWMI), which is associated with later development of cerebral palsy. Although recent studies have demonstrated maturation arrest of oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) in NWMI, the identity of inflammatory mediators with direct effects on OPCs has been unclear. Here, we investigated downstream effects of pro-inflammatory IL-1β to induce cyclooxygenase-2 (COX2) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production in white matter. First, we assessed COX2 expression in human fetal brain and term neonatal brain affected by hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). In the developing human brain, COX2 was expressed in radial glia, microglia, and endothelial cells. In human term neonatal HIE cases with subcortical WMI, COX2 was strongly induced in reactive astrocytes with "A2" reactivity. Next, we show that OPCs express the EP1 receptor for PGE2, and PGE2 acts directly on OPCs to block maturation in vitro. Pharmacologic blockade with EP1-specific inhibitors (ONO-8711, SC-51089), or genetic deficiency of EP1 attenuated effects of PGE2. In an IL-1β-induced model of NWMI, astrocytes also exhibit "A2" reactivity and induce COX2. Furthermore, in vivo inhibition of COX2 with Nimesulide rescues hypomyelination and behavioral impairment. These findings suggest that neonatal white matter astrocytes can develop "A2" reactivity that contributes to OPC maturation arrest in NWMI through induction of COX2-PGE2 signaling, a pathway that can be targeted for neonatal neuroprotection. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. GPR30 Regulates Glutamate Transporter GLT-1 Expression in Rat Primary Astrocytes*

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Eunsook; Sidoryk-Wêgrzynowicz, Marta; Wang, Ning; Webb, Anton; Son, Deok-Soo; Lee, Kyuwon; Aschner, Michael

    2012-01-01

    The G protein-coupled estrogen receptor GPR30 contributes to the neuroprotective effects of 17β-estradiol (E2); however, the mechanisms associated with this protection have yet to be elucidated. Given that E2 increases astrocytic expression of glutamate transporter-1 (GLT-1), which would prevent excitotoxic-induced neuronal death, we proposed that GPR30 mediates E2 action on GLT-1 expression. To investigate this hypothesis, we examined the effects of G1, a selective agonist of GPR30, and GPR30 siRNA on astrocytic GLT-1 expression, as well as glutamate uptake in rat primary astrocytes, and explored potential signaling pathways linking GPR30 to GLT-1. G1 increased GLT-1 protein and mRNA levels, subject to regulation by both MAPK and PI3K signaling. Inhibition of TGF-α receptor suppressed the G1-induced increase in GLT-1 expression. Silencing GPR30 reduced the expression of both GLT-1 and TGF-α and abrogated the G1-induced increase in GLT-1 expression. Moreover, the G1-induced increase in GLT-1 protein expression was abolished by a protein kinase A inhibitor and an NF-κB inhibitor. G1 also enhanced cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB), as well as both NF-κB p50 and NF-κB p65 binding to the GLT-1 promoter. Finally, to model dysfunction of glutamate transporters, manganese was used, and G1 was found to attenuate manganese-induced impairment in GLT-1 protein expression and glutamate uptake. Taken together, the present data demonstrate that activation of GPR30 increases GLT-1 expression via multiple pathways, suggesting that GPR30 is worthwhile as a potential target to be explored for developing therapeutics of excitotoxic neuronal injury. PMID:22645130

  16. Toll-Like Receptor 4 Mediates Methamphetamine-Induced Neuroinflammation through Caspase-11 Signaling Pathway in Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Du, Si-Hao; Qiao, Dong-Fang; Chen, Chuan-Xiang; Chen, Si; Liu, Chao; Lin, Zhoumeng; Wang, Huijun; Xie, Wei-Bing

    2017-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is an amphetamine-typed stimulant drug that is increasingly being abused worldwide. Previous studies have shown that METH toxicity is systemic, especially targeting dopaminergic neurons in the central nervous system (CNS). However, the role of neuroinflammation in METH neurotoxicity remains unclear. We hypothesized that Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and Caspase-11 are involved in METH-induced astrocyte-related neuroinflammation. We tested our hypothesis by examining the changes of TLR4 and Caspase-11 protein expression in primary cultured C57BL/6 mouse astrocytes and in the midbrain and striatum of mice exposed to METH with western blot and double immunofluorescence labeling. We also determined the effects of blocking Caspase-11 expression with wedelolactone (a specific inhibitor of Caspase-11) or siRNA on METH-induced neuroinflammation in astrocytes. Furthermore, we determined the effects of blocking TLR4 expression with TAK-242 (a specific inhibitor of TLR4) or siRNA on METH-induced neuroinflammation in astrocytes. METH exposure increased Caspase-11 and TLR4 expression both in vitro and in vivo, with the effects in vitro being dose-dependent. Inhibition of Caspase-11 expression with either wedelolactone or siRNAs reduced the expression of inflammasome NLRP3 and pro-inflammatory cytokines. In addition, blocking TLR4 expression inhibited METH-induced activation of NF-κB and Caspase-11 in vitro and in vivo, suggesting that TLR4-Caspase-11 pathway is involved in METH-induced neuroinflammation. These results indicate that Caspase-11 and TLR4 play an important role in METH-induced neuroinflammation and may be potential gene targets for therapeutics in METH-caused neurotoxicity. PMID:29311802

  17. Contributions of Glycogen to Astrocytic Energetics during Brain Activation

    PubMed Central

    Dienel, Gerald A.; Cruz, Nancy F.

    2014-01-01

    Glycogen is the major store of glucose in brain and is mainly in astrocytes. Brain glycogen levels in unstimulated, carefully-handled rats are 10-12 mol/g, and assuming that astrocytes account for half the brain mass, astrocytic glycogen content is twice as high. Glycogen turnover is slow under basal conditions, but it is mobilized during activation. There is no net increase in incorporation of label from glucose during activation, whereas label release from pre-labeled glycogen exceeds net glycogen consumption, which increases during stronger stimuli. Because glycogen level is restored by non-oxidative metabolism, astrocytes can influence the global ratio of oxygen to glucose utilization. Compensatory increases in utilization of blood glucose during inhibition of glycogen phosphorylase are large and approximate glycogenolysis rates during sensory stimulation. In contrast, glycogenolysis rates during hypoglycemia are low due to continued glucose delivery and oxidation of endogenous substrates; rates that preserve neuronal function in the absence of glucose are also low, probably due to metabolite oxidation. Modeling studies predict that glycogenolysis maintains a high level of glucose-6-phosphate in astrocytes to maintain feedback inhibition of hexokinase, thereby diverting glucose for use by neurons. The fate of glycogen carbon in vivo is not known, but lactate efflux from brain best accounts for the major metabolic characteristics during activation of living brain. Substantial shuttling coupled with oxidation of glycogen-derived lactate is inconsistent with available evidence. Glycogen has important roles in astrocytic energetics, including glucose sparing, control of extracellular K+ level, oxidative stress management, and memory consolidation; it is a multi-functional compound. PMID:24515302

  18. Contributions of glycogen to astrocytic energetics during brain activation.

    PubMed

    Dienel, Gerald A; Cruz, Nancy F

    2015-02-01

    Glycogen is the major store of glucose in brain and is mainly in astrocytes. Brain glycogen levels in unstimulated, carefully-handled rats are 10-12 μmol/g, and assuming that astrocytes account for half the brain mass, astrocytic glycogen content is twice as high. Glycogen turnover is slow under basal conditions, but it is mobilized during activation. There is no net increase in incorporation of label from glucose during activation, whereas label release from pre-labeled glycogen exceeds net glycogen consumption, which increases during stronger stimuli. Because glycogen level is restored by non-oxidative metabolism, astrocytes can influence the global ratio of oxygen to glucose utilization. Compensatory increases in utilization of blood glucose during inhibition of glycogen phosphorylase are large and approximate glycogenolysis rates during sensory stimulation. In contrast, glycogenolysis rates during hypoglycemia are low due to continued glucose delivery and oxidation of endogenous substrates; rates that preserve neuronal function in the absence of glucose are also low, probably due to metabolite oxidation. Modeling studies predict that glycogenolysis maintains a high level of glucose-6-phosphate in astrocytes to maintain feedback inhibition of hexokinase, thereby diverting glucose for use by neurons. The fate of glycogen carbon in vivo is not known, but lactate efflux from brain best accounts for the major metabolic characteristics during activation of living brain. Substantial shuttling coupled with oxidation of glycogen-derived lactate is inconsistent with available evidence. Glycogen has important roles in astrocytic energetics, including glucose sparing, control of extracellular K(+) level, oxidative stress management, and memory consolidation; it is a multi-functional compound.

  19. Effects of MRP8, LPS, and lenalidomide on the expressions of TNF-α , brain-enriched, and inflammation-related microRNAs in the primary astrocyte culture.

    PubMed

    Omran, Ahmed; Ashhab, Muhammad Usman; Gan, Na; Kong, Huimin; Peng, Jing; Yin, Fei

    2013-01-01

    Astrocytes are now recognized as a heterogeneous class of cells with many important and diverse functions in healthy and diseased central nervous system (CNS). MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNAs which may have key roles in astrocytes activation in response to various stimuli. We performed quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) to detect changes in the expressions of brain-enriched miRNAs (124, 134, 9, 132, and 138), inflammation-related miRNAs (146a, 21, 181a, 221, and 222), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF- α ) in the rat primary astrocyte cultures after stimulation with myeloid-related protein 8 (MRP8) and lipopolysaccharides (LPS). Further, we inhibited the expression of TNF- α in the astrocytes by using TNF- α inhibitor (lenalidomide) and tested for the first time the effect of this inhibition on the expressions of the same tested miRNAs. Stimulation of the astrocytes with MRP8 or LPS leads to significant upregulation of miRNAs (124, 134, 9, 132, 146a, 21, 181a, 221, and 222), while miRNA-138 was downregulated. TNF- α inhibition with lenalidomide leads to opposite expressions of the tested miRNAs. These miRNAs may play an important role in activation of the astrocytes and may be a novel target for cell-specific therapeutic interventions in multiple CNS diseases.

  20. Primary cultures of astrocytes from fetal bovine brain.

    PubMed

    Ballarin, Cristina; Peruffo, Antonella

    2012-01-01

    We describe here a method to obtain primary cell cultures from the cerebral cortex and the hypothalamus of bovine fetuses. We report how tissue origin, developmental stages, and culture medium conditions influence cell differentiation and the prevalence of glial cells vs. neurons. We compare explants from early, middle, and late stages of development and two different fetal calf serum concentrations (1 and 10%) to identify the best conditions to obtain and grow viable astrocytes in culture. In addition, we describe how to cryopreserve and obtain viable cortical astrocytes from frozen fetal bovine brain samples.

  1. Astrocyte truncated-TrkB mediates BDNF antiapoptotic effect leading to neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Saba, Julieta; Turati, Juan; Ramírez, Delia; Carniglia, Lila; Durand, Daniela; Lasaga, Mercedes; Caruso, Carla

    2018-05-31

    Astrocytes are glial cells that help maintain brain homeostasis and become reactive in neurodegenerative processes releasing both harmful and beneficial factors. We have demonstrated that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression is induced by melanocortins in astrocytes but BDNF actions in astrocytes are largely unknown. We hypothesize that BDNF may prevent astrocyte death resulting in neuroprotection. We found that BDNF increased astrocyte viability, preventing apoptosis induced by serum deprivation by decreasing active caspase-3 and p53 expression. The antiapoptotic action of BDNF was abolished by ANA-12 (a specific TrkB antagonist) and by K252a (a general Trk antagonist). Astrocytes only express the BDNF receptor TrkB truncated isoform 1, TrkB-T1. BDNF induced ERK, Akt and Src (a non-receptor tyrosine kinase) activation in astrocytes. Blocking ERK and Akt pathways abolished BDNF protection in serum deprivation-induced cell death. Moreover, BDNF protected astrocytes from death by 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP), an effect also blocked by ANA-12, K252a, and inhibitors of ERK, calcium and Src. BDNF reduced reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels induced in astrocytes by 3-NP and increased xCT expression and glutathione levels. Astrocyte conditioned media (ACM) from untreated astrocytes partially protected PC12 neurons whereas ACM from BDNF-treated astrocytes completely protected PC12 neurons from 3-NP-induced apoptosis. Both ACM from control and BDNF-treated astrocytes markedly reduced ROS levels induced by 3-NP in PC12 cells. Our results demonstrate that BDNF protects astrocytes from cell death through TrkB-T1 signaling, exerts an antioxidant action, and induces release of neuroprotective factors from astrocytes. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  2. Activity-dependent switch of GABAergic inhibition into glutamatergic excitation in astrocyte-neuron networks

    PubMed Central

    Perea, Gertrudis; Gómez, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Covelo, Ana; Ballesteros, Jesús J; Schlosser, Laura; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Martín-Fernández, Mario; Quintana, Ruth; Rayan, Abdelrahman; Díez, Adolfo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Agarwal, Amit; Bergles, Dwight E; Bettler, Bernhard; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Martín, Eduardo D; Kirchhoff, Frank; Araque, Alfonso

    2016-01-01

    Interneurons are critical for proper neural network function and can activate Ca2+ signaling in astrocytes. However, the impact of the interneuron-astrocyte signaling into neuronal network operation remains unknown. Using the simplest hippocampal Astrocyte-Neuron network, i.e., GABAergic interneuron, pyramidal neuron, single CA3-CA1 glutamatergic synapse, and astrocytes, we found that interneuron-astrocyte signaling dynamically affected excitatory neurotransmission in an activity- and time-dependent manner, and determined the sign (inhibition vs potentiation) of the GABA-mediated effects. While synaptic inhibition was mediated by GABAA receptors, potentiation involved astrocyte GABAB receptors, astrocytic glutamate release, and presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors. Using conditional astrocyte-specific GABAB receptor (Gabbr1) knockout mice, we confirmed the glial source of the interneuron-induced potentiation, and demonstrated the involvement of astrocytes in hippocampal theta and gamma oscillations in vivo. Therefore, astrocytes decode interneuron activity and transform inhibitory into excitatory signals, contributing to the emergence of novel network properties resulting from the interneuron-astrocyte interplay. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20362.001 PMID:28012274

  3. Activity-dependent switch of GABAergic inhibition into glutamatergic excitation in astrocyte-neuron networks.

    PubMed

    Perea, Gertrudis; Gómez, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Covelo, Ana; Ballesteros, Jesús J; Schlosser, Laura; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Martín-Fernández, Mario; Quintana, Ruth; Rayan, Abdelrahman; Díez, Adolfo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Agarwal, Amit; Bergles, Dwight E; Bettler, Bernhard; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Martín, Eduardo D; Kirchhoff, Frank; Araque, Alfonso

    2016-12-24

    Interneurons are critical for proper neural network function and can activate Ca 2+ signaling in astrocytes. However, the impact of the interneuron-astrocyte signaling into neuronal network operation remains unknown. Using the simplest hippocampal Astrocyte-Neuron network, i.e., GABAergic interneuron, pyramidal neuron, single CA3-CA1 glutamatergic synapse, and astrocytes, we found that interneuron-astrocyte signaling dynamically affected excitatory neurotransmission in an activity- and time-dependent manner, and determined the sign (inhibition vs potentiation) of the GABA-mediated effects. While synaptic inhibition was mediated by GABA A receptors, potentiation involved astrocyte GABA B receptors, astrocytic glutamate release, and presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors. Using conditional astrocyte-specific GABA B receptor ( Gabbr1 ) knockout mice, we confirmed the glial source of the interneuron-induced potentiation, and demonstrated the involvement of astrocytes in hippocampal theta and gamma oscillations in vivo. Therefore, astrocytes decode interneuron activity and transform inhibitory into excitatory signals, contributing to the emergence of novel network properties resulting from the interneuron-astrocyte interplay.

  4. BMP Signaling in Astrocytes Downregulates EGFR to Modulate Survival and Maturation

    PubMed Central

    Scholze, Anja R.; Foo, Lynette C.; Mulinyawe, Sara; Barres, Ben A.

    2014-01-01

    Astrocytes constitute a major cell population in the brain with a myriad of essential functions, yet we know remarkably little about the signaling pathways and mechanisms that direct astrocyte maturation. To explore the signals regulating astrocyte development, we prospectively purified and cultured immature postnatal rodent astrocytes. We identified fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) and bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) as robust trophic factors for immature astrocytes. We showed that astrocytes respond directly to BMPs via phosphorylation of the smad1/5/8 pathway. In vitro, BMP signaling promoted immature astrocytes to adopt multiple characteristics of mature astrocytes, including a more process-bearing morphology, aquaporin-4 (AQP4) and S100β immunoreactivity, limited proliferation, and strong downregulation of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). In vivo, activation of the smad1/5/8 pathway in astrocytes was seen during early postnatal development, but inhibition of astrocyte proliferation was not observed. These insights can aid in the further dissection of the mechanisms and pathways controlling astrocyte biology and development. PMID:25330173

  5. Culturing In Vivo-like Murine Astrocytes Using the Fast, Simple, and Inexpensive AWESAM Protocol.

    PubMed

    Wolfes, Anne C; Dean, Camin

    2018-01-10

    The AWESAM (a low-cost easy stellate astrocyte method) protocol entails a fast, simple, and inexpensive way to generate large quantities of in vivo-like mouse and rat astrocyte monocultures: Brain cells can be isolated from different brain regions, and after a week of cell culture, non-astrocytic cells are shaken off by placing the culture dishes on a shaker for 6 h in the incubator. The remaining astrocytes are then passaged into new plates with an astrocyte-specific medium (termed NB+H). NB+H contains low concentrations of heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor (HBEGF), which is used in place of serum in medium. After growing in NB+H, AWESAM astrocytes have a stellate morphology and feature fine processes. Moreover, these astrocytes have more in vivo-like gene expression than astrocytes generated by previously published methods. Ca 2+ imaging, vesicle dynamics, and other events close to the membrane can thus be studied in the fine astrocytic processes in vitro, e.g., using live cell confocal or TIRF microscopy. Notably, AWESAM astrocytes also exhibit spontaneous Ca 2+ signaling similar to astrocytes in vivo.

  6. Astrocytes Modulate a Postsynaptic NMDA–GABAA-Receptor Crosstalk in Hypothalamic Neurosecretory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Potapenko, Evgeniy S.; Biancardi, Vinicia C.; Zhou, Yiqiang

    2013-01-01

    A dynamic balance between the excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA is critical for maintaining proper neuronal activity in the brain. This balance is partly achieved via presynaptic interactions between glutamatergic and GABAAergic synapses converging into the same targets. Here, we show that in hypothalamic magnocellular neurosecretory neurons (MNCs), a direct crosstalk between postsynaptic NMDA receptors (NMDARs) and GABAA receptors (GABAARs) contributes to the excitatory/inhibitory balance in this system. We found that activation of NMDARs by endogenous glutamate levels controlled by astrocyte glutamate transporters, evokes a transient and reversible potentiation of postsynaptic GABAARs. This inter-receptor crosstalk is calcium-dependent and involves a kinase-dependent phosphorylation mechanism, but does not require nitric oxide as an intermediary signal. Finally, we found the NMDAR–GABAAR crosstalk to be blunted in rats with heart failure, a pathological condition in which the hypothalamic glutamate–GABA balance is tipped toward an excitatory predominance. Together, our findings support a novel form of glutamate–GABA interactions in MNCs, which involves crosstalk between NMDA and GABAA postsynaptic receptors, whose strength is controlled by the activity of local astrocytes. We propose this inter-receptor crosstalk to act as a compensatory, counterbalancing mechanism to dampen glutamate-mediated overexcitation. Finally, we propose that an uncoupling between NMDARs and GABAARs may contribute to exacerbated neuronal activity and, consequently, sympathohumoral activation in such disease conditions as heart failure. PMID:23303942

  7. Synergistic induction of astrocytic differentiation by factors secreted from meninges in the mouse developing brain.

    PubMed

    Kawamura, Yoichiro; Katada, Sayako; Noguchi, Hirofumi; Yamamoto, Hiroyuki; Sanosaka, Tsukasa; Iihara, Koji; Nakashima, Kinichi

    2017-11-01

    Astrocytes, which support diverse neuronal functions, are generated from multipotent neural stem/precursor cells (NS/PCs) during brain development. Although many astrocyte-inducing factors have been identified and studied in vitro, the regions and/or cells that produce these factors in the developing brain remain elusive. Here, we show that meninges-produced factors induce astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs. Consistent with the timing when astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs increases, expression of astrocyte-inducing factors is upregulated. Meningeal secretion-mimicking combinatorial treatment of NS/PCs with bone morphogenetic protein 4, retinoic acid and leukemia inhibitory factor synergistically activate the promoter of a typical astrocytic marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein. Taken together, our data suggest that meninges play an important role in astrocytic differentiation of NS/PCs in the developing brain. © 2017 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

  8. Immunocytochemical detection of the microsomal glucose-6-phosphatase in human brain astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Bell, J E; Hume, R; Busuttil, A; Burchell, A

    1993-10-01

    Using an antibody raised against the catalytic subunit of glucose-6-phosphatase, this enzyme was immunolocalized in many astrocytes in 20 normal human brains. Double immunofluorescence studies showed co-localization of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) with glucose-6-phosphatase in astrocytes. However, not all GFAP-positive cells were also glucose-6-phosphatase positive, indicating that some astrocytes do not contain demonstrable expression of this enzyme. Reactive astrocytes in a variety of abnormal brains were strongly glucose-6-phosphatase positive, but neoplastic astrocytes were often only weakly positive. Expression of the enzyme could not be demonstrated in radial glia, neurons or oligodendroglia. Astrocytes normally contain glycogen and the demonstration that some astrocytes also contain glucose-6-phosphatase indicates that they are competent for both glycogenolysis and gluconeogenesis, which may be critical for neuronal welfare.

  9. Astrocytes contribute to gamma oscillations and recognition memory.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hosuk Sean; Ghetti, Andrea; Pinto-Duarte, António; Wang, Xin; Dziewczapolski, Gustavo; Galimi, Francesco; Huitron-Resendiz, Salvador; Piña-Crespo, Juan C; Roberts, Amanda J; Verma, Inder M; Sejnowski, Terrence J; Heinemann, Stephen F

    2014-08-12

    Glial cells are an integral part of functional communication in the brain. Here we show that astrocytes contribute to the fast dynamics of neural circuits that underlie normal cognitive behaviors. In particular, we found that the selective expression of tetanus neurotoxin (TeNT) in astrocytes significantly reduced the duration of carbachol-induced gamma oscillations in hippocampal slices. These data prompted us to develop a novel transgenic mouse model, specifically with inducible tetanus toxin expression in astrocytes. In this in vivo model, we found evidence of a marked decrease in electroencephalographic (EEG) power in the gamma frequency range in awake-behaving mice, whereas neuronal synaptic activity remained intact. The reduction in cortical gamma oscillations was accompanied by impaired behavioral performance in the novel object recognition test, whereas other forms of memory, including working memory and fear conditioning, remained unchanged. These results support a key role for gamma oscillations in recognition memory. Both EEG alterations and behavioral deficits in novel object recognition were reversed by suppression of tetanus toxin expression. These data reveal an unexpected role for astrocytes as essential contributors to information processing and cognitive behavior.

  10. Impairment of astrocytic glutaminolysis in glutaric aciduria type I.

    PubMed

    Komatsuzaki, Shoko; Ediga, Raga Deepthi; Okun, Jürgen G; Kölker, Stefan; Sauer, Sven W

    2018-01-01

    Glutaric aciduria type I is a rare, autosomal recessive, inherited defect of glutaryl-CoA dehydrogenase. Deficiency of this protein in L-lysine degradation leads to the characteristic accumulation of nontoxic glutarylcarnitine and neurotoxic glutaric acid (GA), glutaryl-CoA, and 3-hydroxyglutaric acid. Untreated patients develop bilateral lesions of basal ganglia resulting in a complex movement disorder with predominant dystonia in infancy and early childhood. The current pathomechanistic concept strongly focuses on imbalanced neuronal energy metabolism due to accumulating metabolites, whereas little is known about the pathomechanistic role of astrocytes, which are thought to be in constant metabolic crosstalk with neurons. We found that glutaric acid (GA) causes astrocytic cell death under starvation cell culture conditions, i.e. low glucose, without glutamine and fetal calf serum. Glutamine completely abolished GA-induced toxicity, suggesting involvement of glutaminolysis. Increasing dependence on glutaminolysis by chemical induction of hypoxia signaling-potentiated GA-induced toxicity. We further show that GA disturbs glutamine degradation by specifically inhibiting glutamate dehydrogenase. Summarizing our study shows that pathologically relevant concentrations of GA block an important step in the metabolic crosstalk between neurons and astrocytes, ultimately leading to astrocytic cell death.

  11. Acetazolamide Mitigates Astrocyte Cellular Edema Following Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sturdivant, Nasya M.; Smith, Sean G.; Ali, Syed F.; Wolchok, Jeffrey C.; Balachandran, Kartik

    2016-09-01

    Non-penetrating or mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is commonly experienced in accidents, the battlefield and in full-contact sports. Astrocyte cellular edema is one of the major factors that leads to high morbidity post-mTBI. Various studies have reported an upregulation of aquaporin-4 (AQP4), a water channel protein, following brain injury. AZA is an antiepileptic drug that has been shown to inhibit AQP4 expression and in this study we investigate the drug as a therapeutic to mitigate the extent of mTBI induced cellular edema. We hypothesized that mTBI-mediated astrocyte dysfunction, initiated by increased intracellular volume, could be reduced when treated with AZA. We tested our hypothesis in a three-dimensional in vitro astrocyte model of mTBI. Samples were subject to no stretch (control) or one high-speed stretch (mTBI) injury. AQP4 expression was significantly increased 24 hours after mTBI. mTBI resulted in a significant increase in the cell swelling within 30 min of mTBI, which was significantly reduced in the presence of AZA. Cell death and expression of S100B was significantly reduced when AZA was added shortly before mTBI stretch. Overall, our data point to occurrence of astrocyte swelling immediately following mTBI, and AZA as a promising treatment to mitigate downstream cellular mortality.

  12. Cultured astrocytes do not release adenosine during hypoxic conditions

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Takumi; Williams, Erika K; Jensen, Tina K; Smith, Nathan A; Takano, Takahiro; Tieu, Kim; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2012-01-01

    Recent reports based on a chemiluminescent enzymatic assay for detection of adenosine conclude that cultured astrocytes release adenosine during mildly hypoxic conditions. If so, astrocytes may suppress neural activity in early stages of hypoxia. The aim of this study was to reevaluate the observation using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The HPLC analysis showed that exposure to 20 or 120 minutes of mild hypoxia failed to increase release of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), adenosine diphosphate (ADP), adenosine monophosphate (AMP), and adenosine from cultured astrocytes. Similar results were obtained using a chemiluminescent enzymatic assay. Moreover, since the chemiluminescent enzymatic assay relies on hydrogen peroxide generation, release of free-radical scavengers from hypoxic cells can interfere with the assay. Accordingly, adenosine added to samples collected from hypoxic cultures could not be detected using the chemiluminescent enzymatic assay. Furthermore, addition of free-radical scavengers sharply reduced the sensitivity of adenosine detection. Conversely, use of a single-step assay inflated measured values due to the inability of the assay to distinguish adenosine and its metabolite inosine. These results show that cultured astrocytes do not release adenosine during mild hypoxia, an observation consistent with their high resistance to hypoxia. PMID:21989480

  13. Morphological analysis of astrocytes in the hippocampus in mechanical asphyxiation.

    PubMed

    Li, Dong-Ri; Ishikawa, Takaki; Quan, Li; Zhao, Dong; Michiue, Tomomi; Zhu, Bao-Li; Wang, Hui Jun; Maeda, Hitoshi

    2010-03-01

    The present study investigated the morphology of astrocytes in the hippocampus and serum S100B levels in cases of mechanical asphyxia due to neck compression (n=23: atypical hanging, n=7; ligature/manual strangulation, n=16) with regard to the classical autopsy findings, compared with those of other types of asphyxiation (n=9) and acute myocardial infarction/ischemia (AMI, n=20). The decrease in intact astrocyte number, as shown by S100 and GFAP-immunostaining, was larger for asphyxiation due to neck compression compared with that for other asphyxiation and AMI, showing a correlation with the increase in the serum S100B levels. The decrease in intact astrocyte number and increase in serum S100B were closely related to the severity of conjunctival petechial hemorrhage and fracture(s) of the hyoid bone and/or thyroid cartilage in asphyxia due to neck compression. These findings suggest that hippocampal astrocyte injury is caused by cerebral hypoxia accompanied by congestion, especially in mechanical asphyxia due to neck compression. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Cortical astrocytes exposed to tributyltin undergo morphological changes in vitro.

    PubMed

    Mizuhashi, S; Ikegaya, Y; Nishiyama, N; Matsuki, N

    2000-11-01

    We investigated the effect of tributyltin (TBT), an endocrine-disrupting chemical, on the morphology and viability of cultured rat cortical astrocytes. Cultured astrocytes exhibited smooth and planiform morphology under normal conditions. Following exposure to TBT, however, they showed rapid morphological changes that are characterized by asteriated cell bodies and process formation in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Higher concentrations of TBT produced progressive cell death of the astrocytes. In serum-free medium, TBT at a concentration as low as 200 nM induced the stellation. Pharmacological studies revealed that the morphological changes were alleviated by application of diverse free radical scavengers or antioxidants such as catalase, superoxide dismutase, Trolox, ascorbic acid and N-acetyl-L-cysteine, suggesting that TBT-induced stellation is caused by oxidative stress involving free radicals, particularly reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, we found that the astrocyte stellation was abolished by treatment with inhibitors of phospholipase C, mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase or tyrosine phosphatase. The data suggest that TBT causes the stellation through intracellular signaling cascades rather than its non-specific toxicity. These findings provide an important insight for reconciling the problems in assumed aversive actions of this environmental pollutant for mammals.

  15. Microglia is activated by astrocytes in trimethyltin intoxication

    SciTech Connect

    Roehl, Claudia; Sievers, Jobst

    2005-04-01

    Microglia participates in most acute and chronic neuropathologies and its activation appears to involve interactions with neurons and other glial cells. Trimethyltin (TMT)-induced brain damage is a well-characterized model of neurodegeneration, in which microglial activation occurs before neuronal degeneration. The aim of this in vitro study was to investigate the role of astroglia in TMT-induced microgliosis by using nitric oxide (NO), inducible NO synthase (iNOS), and morphological changes as parameters for microglial activation. Our investigation discusses (a) whether microglial cells can be activated directly by TMT; (b) if astroglial cells are capable of triggering or modulating microglial activation; (c) howmore » the morphology and survival of microglia and astrocytes are affected by TMT treatment; and (d) whether microglial-astroglial interactions depend on direct cell contact or on soluble factors. Our results show that microglia are more vulnerable to TMT than astrocytes are and cannot be activated directly by TMT with regard to the examined parameters. In bilayer coculture with viable astroglial cells, microglia produce NO in significant amounts at subcytotoxic concentrations of TMT (20 {mu}mol/l). At these TMT concentrations, microglial cells in coculture convert into small round cells without cell processes, whereas flat, fibroblast-like astrocytes convert into thin process bearing stellate cells with a dense and compact cell body. We conclude that astrocytes trigger microglial activation after treatment with TMT, although the mechanisms of this interaction remain unknown.« less

  16. Glycogen synthase kinase-3 regulates inflammatory tolerance in astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Beurel, Eléonore; Jope, Richard S.

    2010-01-01

    Inflammatory tolerance is the down-regulation of inflammation upon repeated stimuli, which is well-established to occur in peripheral immune cells. However, less is known about inflammatory tolerance in the brain although it may provide an important protective mechanism from detrimental consequences of prolonged inflammation, which appears to occur in many psychiatric and neurodegenerative conditions. Array analysis of 308 inflammatory molecules produced by mouse primary astrocytes after two sequential stimulations with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) distinguished three classes, tolerant, sensitized and unaltered groups. For many of these inflammatory molecules, inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3) increased tolerance and reduced sensitization. Focusing on LPS-tolerance in interleukin-6 (IL-6) production, we found that microglia exhibited a strong tolerance response that matched that of macrophages, whereas astrocytes exhibited only partial tolerance. The astrocyte semi-tolerance was found to be regulated by GSK3. GSK3 inhibitors or knocking down GSK3 levels promoted LPS-tolerance and astrocytes expressing constitutively active GSK3 did not develop LPS-tolerance. These findings identify the critical role of GSK3 in counteracting IL-6 inflammatory tolerance in cells of the CNS, supporting the therapeutic potential of GSK3 inhibitors to reduce neuroinflammation by promoting tolerance. PMID:20553816

  17. Age-Dependent Neurochemical Remodeling of Hypothalamic Astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Santos, Camila Leite; Roppa, Paola Haack Amaral; Truccolo, Pedro; Fontella, Fernanda Urruth; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Bobermin, Larissa Daniele; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2017-10-04

    The hypothalamus is a crucial integrative center in the central nervous system, responsible for the regulation of homeostatic activities, including systemic energy balance. Increasing evidence has highlighted a critical role of astrocytes in orchestrating hypothalamic functions; they participate in the modulation of synaptic transmission, metabolic and trophic support to neurons, immune defense, and nutrient sensing. In this context, disturbance of systemic energy homeostasis, which is a common feature of obesity and the aging process, involves inflammatory responses. This may be related to dysfunction of hypothalamic astrocytes. In this regard, the aim of this study was to evaluate the neurochemical properties of hypothalamic astrocyte cultures from newborn, adult, and aged Wistar rats. Age-dependent changes in the regulation of glutamatergic homeostasis, glutathione biosynthesis, amino acid profile, glucose metabolism, trophic support, and inflammatory response were observed. Additionally, signaling pathways including nuclear factor erythroid-derived 2-like 2/heme oxygenase-1 p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase, nuclear factor kappa B, phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase/Akt, and leptin receptor expression may represent putative mechanisms associated with the cellular alterations. In summary, our findings indicate that as age increases, hypothalamic astrocytes remodel and exhibit changes in their neurochemical properties. This process may play a role in the onset and/or progression of metabolic disorders.

  18. Astrocytes influence the severity of spinal muscular atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Rindt, Hansjörg; Feng, Zhihua; Mazzasette, Chiara; Glascock, Jacqueline J.; Valdivia, David; Pyles, Noah; Crawford, Thomas O.; Swoboda, Kathryn J.; Patitucci, Teresa N.; Ebert, Allison D.; Sumner, Charlotte J.; Ko, Chien-Ping; Lorson, Christian L.

    2015-01-01

    Systemically low levels of survival motor neuron-1 (SMN1) protein cause spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). α-Motor neurons of the spinal cord are considered particularly vulnerable in this genetic disorder and their dysfunction and loss cause progressive muscle weakness, paralysis and eventually premature death of afflicted individuals. Historically, SMA was therefore considered a motor neuron-autonomous disease. However, depletion of SMN in motor neurons of normal mice elicited only a very mild phenotype. Conversely, restoration of SMN to motor neurons in an SMA mouse model had only modest effects on the SMA phenotype and survival. Collectively, these results suggested that additional cell types contribute to the pathogenesis of SMA, and understanding the non-autonomous requirements is crucial for developing effective therapies. Astrocytes are critical for regulating synapse formation and function as well as metabolic support for neurons. We hypothesized that astrocyte functions are disrupted in SMA, exacerbating disease progression. Using viral-based restoration of SMN specifically to astrocytes, survival in severe and intermediate SMA mice was observed. In addition, neuromuscular circuitry was improved. Astrogliosis was prominent in end-stage SMA mice and in post-mortem patient spinal cords. Increased expression of proinflammatory cytokines was partially normalized in treated mice, suggesting that astrocytes contribute to the pathogenesis of SMA. PMID:25911676

  19. Effects of lactic acid on astrocytes in primary culture.

    PubMed

    Norenberg, M D; Mozes, L W; Gregorios, J B; Norenberg, L O

    1987-03-01

    Excessive tissue lactic acidosis is considered to be detrimental to the central nervous system (CNS) and may adversely affect recovery from anoxia, ischemia, trauma and epilepsy. Since astrocytes are believed to play a role in pH regulation in the CNS, we studied the effect of this acid on primary astrocyte cultures. Cells exposed to lactic acid showed chromatin clumping, an increase of lipid and dense bodies, a loss of polyribosomal clusters, slightly increased cytoplasmic lucency, swollen mitochondria and tangled intermediate filaments. These alterations progressed with lower pH and longer exposure. Irreversible changes occurred one to two hours after exposure at pH 6; after 30 to 60 minutes (min) at pH 5.5 and after ten to 30 min at pH 5. Comparable results were obtained with the use of other weak acids indicating that the observed changes were due to increased hydrogen ion concentration rather than secondary to lactate per se. Additionally, various concentrations of lactic acid adjusted to identical pH produced similar morphologic alterations. Thus, while lactic acid caused marked and at times irreversible alterations in astrocytes, severe and prolonged acidosis was required to produce such injurious effects. This relative resistance of astrocytes to acidosis is in keeping with their potential role in pH regulation in brain.

  20. Differential somatostatin, CXCR4 chemokine and endothelin A receptor expression in WHO grade I-IV astrocytic brain tumors.

    PubMed

    Lange, Franziska; Kaemmerer, Daniel; Behnke-Mursch, Julianne; Brück, Wolfgang; Schulz, Stefan; Lupp, Amelie

    2018-04-25

    Glioblastomas represent the most common primary malignant tumor of the nervous system and the most frequent type of astrocytic tumors. Despite improved therapeutic options, prognosis has remained exceptionally poor over the last two decades. Therefore, new treatment approaches are urgently needed. An overexpression of somatostatin (SST) as well as chemokine CXCR4 and endothelin A (ETA) receptors has been shown for many types of cancer. Respective expression data for astrocytic brain tumors, however, are scarce and contradictory. SST subtype, CXCR4 and ETA expression was comparatively evaluated in a total of 57 grade I-IV astrocytic tumor samples by immunohistochemistry using well-characterized monoclonal antibodies. Overall, receptor expression on the tumor cells was only very low. SST5 was the most prominently expressed receptor, followed by SST3, ETA, SST2 and CXCR4. In contrast, tumor capillaries displayed strong SST2, SST3, SST5, CXCR4 and ETA expression. Presence of SST5, CXCR4 and ETA on tumor cells and of SST3, CXCR4 and ETA on microvessels gradually increased from grade II to grade IV tumors. Ki-67 values correlated significantly with CXCR4 expression on tumor cells and with vascular SST3, CXCR4 or ETA positivity. SST5 or CXCR4 positivity of tumor cells and vascular SST3 or CXCR4 expression negatively correlated with patient outcome. Though having some prognostic value, SST, CXCR4 or ETA expression on astrocytic tumor cells is clearly of no therapeutic relevance. Indirect targeting of these highly vascularized tumors via SST3, SST5, CXCR4 or ETA on the microvessels, in contrast, may represent a promising additional therapeutic strategy.

  1. Identification of Glial Activation Markers by Comparison of Transcriptome Changes between Astrocytes and Microglia following Innate Immune Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Madeddu, Silvia; Woods, Tyson A.; Mukherjee, Piyali; Sturdevant, Dan; Peterson, Karin E.

    2015-01-01

    The activation of astrocytes and microglia is often associated with diseases of the central nervous system (CNS). Understanding how activation alters the transcriptome of these cells may offer valuable insight regarding how activation of these cells mediate neurological damage. Furthermore, identifying common and unique pathways of gene expression during activation may provide new insight into the distinct roles these cells have in the CNS during infection and inflammation. Since recent studies indicate that TLR7 recognizes not only viral RNA but also microRNAs that are released by damaged neurons and elevated during neurological diseases, we first examined the response of glial cells to TLR7 stimulation using microarray analysis. Microglia were found to generate a much stronger response to TLR7 activation than astrocytes, both in the number of genes induced as well as fold induction. Although the primary pathways induced by both cell types were directly linked to immune responses, microglia also induced pathways associated with cellular proliferation, while astrocytes did not. Targeted analysis of a subset of the upregulated genes identified unique mRNA, including Ifi202b which was only upregulated by microglia and was found to be induced during both retroviral and bunyavirus infections in the CNS. In addition, other genes including Birc3 and Gpr84 as well as two expressed sequences AW112010 and BC023105 were found to be induced in both microglia and astrocytes and were upregulated in the CNS following virus infection. Thus, expression of these genes may a useful measurement of glial activation during insult or injury to the CNS. PMID:26214311

  2. Identification of Glial Activation Markers by Comparison of Transcriptome Changes between Astrocytes and Microglia following Innate Immune Stimulation.

    PubMed

    Madeddu, Silvia; Woods, Tyson A; Mukherjee, Piyali; Sturdevant, Dan; Butchi, Niranjan B; Peterson, Karin E

    2015-01-01

    The activation of astrocytes and microglia is often associated with diseases of the central nervous system (CNS). Understanding how activation alters the transcriptome of these cells may offer valuable insight regarding how activation of these cells mediate neurological damage. Furthermore, identifying common and unique pathways of gene expression during activation may provide new insight into the distinct roles these cells have in the CNS during infection and inflammation. Since recent studies indicate that TLR7 recognizes not only viral RNA but also microRNAs that are released by damaged neurons and elevated during neurological diseases, we first examined the response of glial cells to TLR7 stimulation using microarray analysis. Microglia were found to generate a much stronger response to TLR7 activation than astrocytes, both in the number of genes induced as well as fold induction. Although the primary pathways induced by both cell types were directly linked to immune responses, microglia also induced pathways associated with cellular proliferation, while astrocytes did not. Targeted analysis of a subset of the upregulated genes identified unique mRNA, including Ifi202b which was only upregulated by microglia and was found to be induced during both retroviral and bunyavirus infections in the CNS. In addition, other genes including Birc3 and Gpr84 as well as two expressed sequences AW112010 and BC023105 were found to be induced in both microglia and astrocytes and were upregulated in the CNS following virus infection. Thus, expression of these genes may a useful measurement of glial activation during insult or injury to the CNS.

  3. Ischemic Preconditioning Protects Astrocytes against Oxygen Glucose Deprivation Via the Nuclear Erythroid 2-Related Factor 2 Pathway.

    PubMed

    Narayanan, Srinivasan V; Dave, Kunjan R; Perez-Pinzon, Miguel A

    2018-04-01

    Induction of ischemic preconditioning (IPC) represents a potential therapy against cerebral ischemia by activation of adaptive pathways and modulation of mitochondria to induce ischemic tolerance to various cells and tissues. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been ascribed to contribute to numerous neurodegenerative conditions and cerebral ischemia. Nuclear erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a transcription factor that has traditionally been involved in upregulating cellular antioxidant systems to combat oxidative stress in the brain; however, the association of Nrf2 with mitochondria in the brain remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the effects of Nrf2 on (i) IPC-induced protection of astrocytes; (ii) OXPHOS protein expression; and (iii) mitochondrial supercomplex formation.Oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) was used as an in vitro model of cerebral ischemia and IPC in cultured rodent astrocytes derived from WT C57Bl/6J and Nrf2 -/- mice. OXPHOS proteins were probed via western blotting, and supercomplexes were determined by blue native gel electrophoresis.IPC-induced cytoprotection in wild-type, but not Nrf2 -/- mouse astrocyte cultures following a lethal duration of OGD. In addition, our results suggest that Nrf2 localizes to the outer membrane in non-synaptic brain mitochondria, and that a lack of Nrf2 in vivo produces altered supercomplex formation in mitochondria.Our findings support a role of Nrf2 in mediating IPC-induced protection in astrocytes, which can profoundly impact the ischemic tolerance of neurons. In addition, we provide novel evidence for the association of Nrf2 to brain mitochondria and supercomplex formation. These studies offer new targets and pathways of Nrf2, which may be heavily implicated following cerebral ischemia.

  4. A predictive in vitro model of the impact of drugs with anticholinergic properties on human neuronal and astrocytic systems.

    PubMed

    Woehrling, Elizabeth K; Parri, H Rheinallt; Tse, Erin H Y; Hill, Eric J; Maidment, Ian D; Fox, G Christopher; Coleman, Michael D

    2015-01-01

    The link between off-target anticholinergic effects of medications and acute cognitive impairment in older adults requires urgent investigation. We aimed to determine whether a relevant in vitro model may aid the identification of anticholinergic responses to drugs and the prediction of anticholinergic risk during polypharmacy. In this preliminary study we employed a co-culture of human-derived neurons and astrocytes (NT2.N/A) derived from the NT2 cell line. NT2.N/A cells possess much of the functionality of mature neurons and astrocytes, key cholinergic phenotypic markers and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). The cholinergic response of NT2 astrocytes to the mAChR agonist oxotremorine was examined using the fluorescent dye fluo-4 to quantitate increases in intracellular calcium [Ca2+]i. Inhibition of this response by drugs classified as severe (dicycloverine, amitriptyline), moderate (cyclobenzaprine) and possible (cimetidine) on the Anticholinergic Cognitive Burden (ACB) scale, was examined after exposure to individual and pairs of compounds. Individually, dicycloverine had the most significant effect regarding inhibition of the astrocytic cholinergic response to oxotremorine, followed by amitriptyline then cyclobenzaprine and cimetidine, in agreement with the ACB scale. In combination, dicycloverine with cyclobenzaprine had the most significant effect, followed by dicycloverine with amitriptyline. The order of potency of the drugs in combination frequently disagreed with predicted ACB scores derived from summation of the individual drug scores, suggesting current scales may underestimate the effect of polypharmacy. Overall, this NT2.N/A model may be appropriate for further investigation of adverse anticholinergic effects of multiple medications, in order to inform clinical choices of suitable drug use in the elderly.

  5. A Predictive In Vitro Model of the Impact of Drugs with Anticholinergic Properties on Human Neuronal and Astrocytic Systems

    PubMed Central

    Woehrling, Elizabeth K.; Parri, H. Rheinallt; Tse, Erin H. Y.; Hill, Eric J.; Maidment, Ian D.; Fox, G. Christopher; Coleman, Michael D.

    2015-01-01

    The link between off-target anticholinergic effects of medications and acute cognitive impairment in older adults requires urgent investigation. We aimed to determine whether a relevant in vitro model may aid the identification of anticholinergic responses to drugs and the prediction of anticholinergic risk during polypharmacy. In this preliminary study we employed a co-culture of human-derived neurons and astrocytes (NT2.N/A) derived from the NT2 cell line. NT2.N/A cells possess much of the functionality of mature neurons and astrocytes, key cholinergic phenotypic markers and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). The cholinergic response of NT2 astrocytes to the mAChR agonist oxotremorine was examined using the fluorescent dye fluo-4 to quantitate increases in intracellular calcium [Ca2+]i. Inhibition of this response by drugs classified as severe (dicycloverine, amitriptyline), moderate (cyclobenzaprine) and possible (cimetidine) on the Anticholinergic Cognitive Burden (ACB) scale, was examined after exposure to individual and pairs of compounds. Individually, dicycloverine had the most significant effect regarding inhibition of the astrocytic cholinergic response to oxotremorine, followed by amitriptyline then cyclobenzaprine and cimetidine, in agreement with the ACB scale. In combination, dicycloverine with cyclobenzaprine had the most significant effect, followed by dicycloverine with amitriptyline. The order of potency of the drugs in combination frequently disagreed with predicted ACB scores derived from summation of the individual drug scores, suggesting current scales may underestimate the effect of polypharmacy. Overall, this NT2.N/A model may be appropriate for further investigation of adverse anticholinergic effects of multiple medications, in order to inform clinical choices of suitable drug use in the elderly. PMID:25738989

  6. Postnatal reduction of tuberous sclerosis complex 1 expression in astrocytes and neurons causes seizures in an age-dependent manner.

    PubMed

    Zou, Jia; Zhang, Bo; Gutmann, David H; Wong, Michael

    2017-12-01

    Epilepsy is one of the most prominent symptoms of tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), a genetic disorder, and may be related to developmental defects resulting from impaired TSC1 or TSC2 gene function in astrocytes and neurons. Inactivation of the Tsc1 gene driven by a glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) promoter during embryonic brain development leads to widespread pathologic effects on astrocytes and neurons, culminating in severe, progressive epilepsy in mice (Tsc1 GFAP -Cre mice). However, the developmental timing and cellular specificity relevant to epileptogenesis in this model has not been well defined. The present study evaluates the effect of postnatal Tsc1 gene inactivation on pathologic features of astrocytes and neurons and development of epilepsy. An inducible Tsc1 knock-out mouse was created utilizing a tamoxifen-driven GFAP-CreER line (Tsc1 GFAP -Cre ER mice) with TSC1 reduction induced postnatally at 2 and 6 weeks of age, and compared to conventional Tsc1 GFAP -Cre mice with prenatal TSC1 reduction. Western blotting, immunohistochemistry, histology, and video-electroencephalography (EEG) assessed mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway activation, astrogliosis, neuronal organization, and spontaneous seizures, respectively. Tsc1 gene inactivation at 2 weeks of age was sufficient to cause astrogliosis and mild epilepsy in Tsc1 GFAP -Cre ER mice, but the phenotype was much less severe than that observed with prenatal Tsc1 gene inactivation in Tsc1 GFAP -Cre mice. Both astrocytes and neurons were affected by prenatal and postnatal Tsc1 gene activation to a degree similar to the severity of epilepsy, suggesting that both cellular types may contribute to epileptogenesis. These findings support a model in which the developmental timing of TSC1 loss dictates the severity of neuronal and glial abnormalities and resulting epilepsy. Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 International League Against Epilepsy.

  7. Intracellular water preexchange lifetime in neurons and astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Yang, Donghan M; Huettner, James E; Bretthorst, G Larry; Neil, Jeffrey J; Garbow, Joel R; Ackerman, Joseph J H

    2018-03-01

    To determine the intracellular water preexchange lifetime, τ i , the "average residence time" of water, in the intracellular milieu of neurons and astrocytes. The preexchange lifetime is important for modeling a variety of MR data sets, including relaxation, diffusion-sensitive, and dynamic contrast-enhanced data sets. Herein, τ i in neurons and astrocytes is determined in a microbead-adherent, cultured cell system. In concert with thin-slice selection, rapid flow of extracellular media suppresses extracellular signal, allowing determination of the transcytolemmal-exchange-dominated, intracellular T 1 . With this knowledge, and that of the intracellular T 1 in the absence of exchange, τ i can be derived. Under normal culture conditions, τ i for neurons is 0.75 ± 0.05 s versus 0.57 ± 0.03 s for astrocytes. Both neuronal and astrocytic τ i s decrease within 30 min after the onset of oxygen-glucose deprivation, with the astrocytic τ i showing a substantially greater decrease than the neuronal τ i . Given an approximate intra- to extracellular volume ratio of 4:1 in the brain, these data imply that, under normal physiological conditions, an MR experimental characteristic time of less than 0.012 s is required for a nonexchanging, two-compartment (intra- and extracellular) model to be valid for MR studies. This characteristic time shortens significantly (i.e., 0.004 s) under injury conditions. Magn Reson Med 79:1616-1627, 2018. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.

  8. Astrocytes in the optic nerve head express putative mechanosensitive channels

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Hee Joo; Sun, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To establish whether optic nerve head astrocytes express candidate molecules to sense tissue stretch. Methods We used conventional PCR, quantitative PCR, and single-cell reverse transcription PCR (RT–PCR) to assess the expression of various members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel family and of the recently characterized mechanosensitive channels Piezo1 and 2 in optic nerve head tissue and in single, isolated astrocytes. Results Most TRP subfamilies (TRPC, TRPM, TRPV, TRPA, and TRPP) and Piezo1 and 2 were expressed in the optic nerve head of the mouse. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis showed that TRPC1, TRPM7, TRPV2, TRPP2, and Piezo1 are the dominant isoforms in each subfamily. Single-cell RT–PCR revealed that many TRP isoforms, TRPC1–2, TRPC6, TRPV2, TRPV4, TRPM2, TRPM4, TRPM6–7, TRPP1–2, and Piezo1–2, are expressed in astrocytes of the optic nerve head, and that most astrocytes express TRPC1 and TRPP1–2. Comparisons of the TRPP and Piezo expression levels between different tissue regions showed that Piezo2 expression was higher in the optic nerve head and the optic nerve proper than in the brain and the corpus callosum. TRPP2 also showed higher expression in the optic nerve head. Conclusions Astrocytes in the optic nerve head express multiple putative mechanosensitive channels, in particular the recently identified channels Piezo1 and 2. The expression of putative mechanosensitive channels in these cells may contribute to their responsiveness to traumatic or glaucomatous injury. PMID:26236150

  9. Rat astrocytes during anoxia: Secretome profile of cytokines and chemokines.

    PubMed

    Samy, Zeinab Adel; Al-Abdullah, Lulwa; Turcani, Marian; Craik, James; Redzic, Zoran

    2018-06-04

    The precise mechanisms of the inflammatory responses after cerebral ischemia in vivo are difficult to elucidate because of the complex nature of multiple series of interactions between cells and molecules. This study explored temporal patterns of secretion of 30 cytokines and chemokines from Sprague Dawley rat astrocytes in primary culture in order to elucidate signaling pathways that are triggered by astrocytes during anoxia. Primary cultures of rat brain astrocytes were incubated for periods of 2-24 hr in the absence of oxygen (anoxia) or under normal partial pressure of oxygen (controls). Simultaneous detection of 29 cytokines and chemokines in the samples was performed using a rat cytokine array panel, while the temporal pattern of angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1) secretion was determined separately using ELISA. Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney test was used to compare normoxic and anoxic samples and the Hodge-Lehman estimator with exact 95% confidence intervals was computed to assess the size of differences in cytokine secretion. The obtained data were imported into the Core Analysis tool of Ingenuity Pathways Analysis software in order to relate changes in secretion of cytokines and chemokines from astrocytes during anoxia to potential molecular signal networks. With the exception of Ang-1, concentrations of all cytokines/chemokines in samples collected after anoxia exposure were either the same, or higher, than in control groups. No clear pattern of changes could be established for groups of cytokines with similar effects (i.e., pro- or anti-inflammatory cytokines). The pattern of changes in cytokine secretion during anoxia was associated with the HIF-1α-mediated response, as well as cytokines IL-1β and cathepsin S pathways, which are related to initiation of inflammation and antigen presentation, respectively, and to ciliary neurotrophic factor. These in vitro findings suggest that astrocytes may play a role in triggering inflammation during anoxia/ischemia of the brain.

  10. Activation of MAPK and FoxO by Manganese (Mn) in Rat Neonatal Primary Astrocyte Cultures

    PubMed Central

    Exil, Vernat; Ping, Li; Yu, Yingchun; Chakraborty, Sudipta; Caito, Samuel W.; Wells, K. Sam; Karki, Pratap; Lee, Eunsook; Aschner, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Environmental exposure to manganese (Mn) leads to a neurodegenerative disease that has shared clinical characteristics with Parkinson's disease (PD). Mn-induced neurotoxicity is time- and dose-dependent, due in part to oxidative stress. We ascertained the molecular targets involved in Mn-induced neurodegeneration using astrocyte culture as: (1) Astrocytes are vital for information processing within the brain, (2) their redox potential is essential in mitigating reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels, and (3) they are targeted early in the course of Mn toxicity. We first tested protein levels of Mn superoxide dismutase -2 (SOD-2) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx-1) as surrogates of astrocytic oxidative stress response. We assessed levels of the forkhead winged-helix transcription factor O (FoxO) in response to Mn exposure. FoxO is highly regulated by the insulin-signaling pathway. FoxO mediates cellular responses to toxic stress and modulates adaptive responses. We hypothesized that FoxO is fundamental in mediating oxidative stress response upon Mn treatment, and may be a biomarker of Mn-induced neurodegeneration. Our results indicate that 100 or 500 µM of MnCl2 led to increased levels of FoxO (dephosphorylated and phosphorylated) compared with control cells (P<0.01). p-FoxO disappeared from the cytosol upon Mn exposure. Pre-treatment of cultured cells with (R)-(−)-2-oxothiazolidine-4-carboxylic acid (OTC), a cysteine analog rescued the cytosolic FoxO. At these concentrations, MAPK phosphorylation, in particular p38 and ERK, and PPAR gamma coactivator-1 (PGC-1) levels were increased, while AKT phosphorylation remained unchanged. FoxO phosphorylation level was markedly reduced with the use of SB203580 (a p38 MAPK inhibitor) and PD98059 (an ERK inhibitor). We conclude that FoxO phosphorylation after Mn exposure occurs in parallel with, and independent of the insulin-signaling pathway. FoxO levels and its translocation into the nucleus are part of early events

  11. Precision Medicine in Multiple Sclerosis: Future of PET Imaging of Inflammation and Reactive Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Poutiainen, Pekka; Jaronen, Merja; Quintana, Francisco J.; Brownell, Anna-Liisa

    2016-01-01

    Non-invasive molecular imaging techniques can enhance diagnosis to achieve successful treatment, as well as reveal underlying pathogenic mechanisms in disorders such as multiple sclerosis (MS). The cooperation of advanced multimodal imaging techniques and increased knowledge of the MS disease mechanism allows both monitoring of neuronal network and therapeutic outcome as well as the tools to discover novel therapeutic targets. Diverse imaging modalities provide reliable diagnostic and prognostic platforms to better achieve precision medicine. Traditionally, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been considered the golden standard in MS research and diagnosis. However, positron emission tomography (PET) imaging can provide functional information of molecular biology in detail even prior to anatomic changes, allowing close follow up of disease progression and treatment response. The recent findings support three major neuroinflammation components in MS: astrogliosis, cytokine elevation, and significant changes in specific proteins, which offer a great variety of specific targets for imaging purposes. Regardless of the fact that imaging of astrocyte function is still a young field and in need for development of suitable imaging ligands, recent studies have shown that inflammation and astrocyte activation are related to progression of MS. MS is a complex disease, which requires understanding of disease mechanisms for successful treatment. PET is a precise non-invasive imaging method for biochemical functions and has potential to enhance early and accurate diagnosis for precision therapy of MS. In this review we focus on modulation of different receptor systems and inflammatory aspect of MS, especially on activation of glial cells, and summarize the recent findings of PET imaging in MS and present the most potent targets for new biomarkers with the main focus on experimental MS research. PMID:27695400

  12. Amitriptyline induces brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mRNA expression through ERK-dependent modulation of multiple BDNF mRNA variants in primary cultured rat cortical astrocytes and microglia.

    PubMed

    Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Kajitani, Naoto; Kaneko, Masahiro; Shigetou, Takahiro; Kasai, Miho; Matsumoto, Chie; Yokoe, Toshiki; Azuma, Honami; Takebayashi, Minoru; Morioka, Norimitsu; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2016-03-01

    A significant role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been previously implicated in the therapeutic effect of antidepressants. To ascertain the contribution of specific cell types in the brain that produce BDNF following antidepressant treatment, the effects of the tricyclic antidepressant amitriptyline on rat primary neuronal, astrocytic and microglial cortical cultures were examined. Amitriptyline increased the expression of BDNF mRNA in astrocytic and microglial cultures but not neuronal cultures. Antidepressants with distinct mechanisms of action, such as clomipramine, duloxetine and fluvoxamine, also increased BDNF mRNA expression in astrocytic and microglial cultures. There are multiple BDNF mRNA variants (exon I, IIA, IV and VI) expressed in astrocytes and microglia and the variant induced by antidepressants has yet to be elaborated. Treatment with antidepressants increased the expression of exon I, IV and VI in astrocyte and microglia. Clomipramine alone significantly upregulated expression of exon IIA. The amitriptyline-induced expression of both total and individual BDNF mRNA variants (exon I, IV and VI) were blocked by MEK inhibitor U0126, indicating MEK/ERK signaling is required in the expression of BDNF. These findings indicate that non-neural cells are a significant target of antidepressants and further support the contention that glial production of BDNF is crucial role in the therapeutic effect of antidepressants. The current data suggest that targeting of glial function could lead to the development of antidepressants with a truly novel mechanism of action. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. A phosphatase-independent gain-of-function mutation in PTEN triggers aberrant cell growth in astrocytes through an autocrine IGF-1 loop.

    PubMed

    Fernández, S; Genis, L; Torres-Alemán, I

    2014-08-07

    Loss-of-function mutations in the phosphatase PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome10) contribute to aberrant cell growth in part through upregulation of the mitogenic IGF-1/PI3K/Akt pathway. In turn, this pathway exerts a homeostatic feedback over PTEN. Using mutagenesis analysis to explore a possible impact of this mutual control on astrocyte growth, we found that truncation of the C-terminal region of PTEN (Δ51) associates with a marked increase in NFκB activity, a transcription factor overactivated in astrocyte tumors. Whereas mutations of PTEN are considered to lead to a loss-of-function, PTENΔ51, a truncation that comprises a region frequently mutated in human gliomas, displayed a neomorphic (gain-of-function) activity that was independent of its phosphatase activity. This gain-of-function of PTENΔ51 includes stimulation of IGF-1 synthesis through protein kinase A activation of the IGF-1 promoter. Increased IGF-1 originates an autocrine loop that activates Akt and NFκB. Constitutive activation of NFκB in PTENΔ51-expressing astrocytes leads to aberrant cell growth; astrocytes expressing this mutant PTEN generate colonies in vitro and tumors in vivo. Mutations converting a tumor suppressor such as PTEN into a tumor promoter through a gain-of-function involving IGF-1 production may further our understanding of the role played by this growth factor in glioma growth and help us define druggable targets for personalized therapy.

  14. Advanced glycation end product-induced astrocytic differentiation of cultured neurospheres through inhibition of Notch-Hes1 pathway-mediated neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Guo, Yijing; Wang, Pin; Sun, Haixia; Cai, Rongrong; Xia, Wenqing; Wang, Shaohua

    2013-12-23

    This study aims to investigate the roles of the Notch-Hes1 pathway in the advanced glycation end product (AGE)-mediated differentiation of neural stem cells (NSCs). We prepared pLentiLox3.7 lentiviral vectors that express short hairpin RNA (shRNA) against Notch1 and transfected it into NSCs. Cell differentiation was analyzed under confocal laser-scanning microscopy. The percentage of neurons and astrocytes was quantified by normalizing the total number of TUJ1+ (Neuron-specific class III β-tubulin) and GFAP+ (Glial fibrillary acidic protein) cells to the total number of Hoechst 33342-labeled cell nuclei. The protein and gene expression of Notch-Hes1 pathway components was examined via western blot analysis and real-time PCR. After 1 week of incubation, we found that AGE-bovine serum albumin (BSA) (400 μg/mL) induced the astrocytic differentiation of cultured neurospheres and inhibited neuronal formation. The expression of Notch-Hes1 pathway components was upregulated in the cells in the AGE-BSA culture medium. Immunoblot analysis indicated that shRNA silencing of Notch1 expression in NSCs significantly increases neurogenesis and suppresses astrocytic differentiation in NSCs incubated with AGE-BSA. AGEs promote the astrocytic differentiation of cultured neurospheres by inhibiting neurogenesis through the Notch-Hes1 pathway, providing a potential therapeutic target for hyperglycemia-related cognitive deficits.

  15. Modifications in astrocyte morphology and calcium signaling induced by a brain capillary endothelial cell line.

    PubMed

    Yoder, Elizabeth J

    2002-04-15

    Astrocytes extend specialized endfoot processes to perisynaptic and perivascular regions, and thus are positioned to mediate the bidirectional flow of metabolic, ionic, and other transmissive substances between neurons and the blood stream. While mutual structural and functional interactions between neurons and astrocytes have been documented, less is known about the interactions between astrocytes and cerebrovascular cells. For example, although the ability of astrocytes to induce structural and functional changes in endothelial cells is established, the reciprocity of brain endothelial cells to induce changes in astrocytes is undetermined. This issue is addressed in the present study. Changes in primary cultures of neonatal mouse cortical astrocytes were investigated following their coculture with mouse brain capillary endothelial (bEnd3) cells. The presence of bEnd3 cells altered the morphology of astrocytes by transforming them from confluent monolayers into networks of elongated multicellular columns. These columns did not occur when either bEnd3 cells or astrocytes were cocultured with other cell types, suggesting that astrocytes undergo specific morphological consequences when placed in close proximity to brain endothelial cells. In addition to these structural changes, the pharmacological profile of astrocytes was modified by coculture with bEnd3 cells. Astrocytes in the cocultures showed an increased Ca2+ responsiveness to bradykinin and glutamate, but no change in responsiveness to ATP, as compared to controls. Coculturing the astrocytes with a neuronal cell line resulted in increased responsiveness of the glial responses to glutamate but not to bradykinin. These studies indicate that brain endothelial cells induce changes in astrocyte morphology and pharmacology. Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Establishment and characterization of a new conditionally immortalized human astrocyte cell line.

    PubMed

    Furihata, Tomomi; Ito, Ryo; Kamiichi, Atsuko; Saito, Kosuke; Chiba, Kan

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell types in mammalian brains, within which they participate in various neuronal activities, partly by utilizing the numerous transporters expressed at their plasma membranes. Accordingly, detailed characterization of astrocytic functions, including transporters, are essential for understanding of mechanistic basis of normal brain functions, as well as the pathogenesis and treatment of various brain diseases. As a part of overall efforts to facilitate such studies, this study reports on the establishment of a new human astrocyte cell line, which is hereafter referred to as human astrocyte/conditionally immortalized, clone 35 (HASTR/ci35). This line, which was developed utilizing a cell immortalization method, showed excellent proliferative ability and expressed various astrocyte markers, including glial fibrillary acidic protein. When co-cultured with neuronal cells, HASTR/ci35 cells could facilitate their dendritic network formation. Furthermore, HASTR/ci35 cells not only possessed significant glutamate and adenosine transporter activities but also exhibited organic ion transporter activities. To summarize, HASTR/ci35 cells possess several key astrocytic characteristics, including various transporter functions, while simultaneously showing infinite proliferation and scalability. Based on these findings, HASTR/ci35 cells can be expected to contribute significantly to various human astrocyte study fields. In vitro astrocyte models are valuable experimental tools in various astrocyte studies. Here, we report the establishment of a new human astrocyte cell line, HASTR/ci35, which show various key astrocyte properties, including astrocytic transporter activities, glycogen storage and facilitation of neuronal cell differentiation. Thus, HASTR/ci35 is expected to significantly contribute to advances toward detailed understanding of human astrocyte functions. © 2015 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  17. Phenotypic Heterogeneity and Plasticity of Isocortical and Hippocampal Astrocytes in the Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Sosunov, Alexander A.; Wu, Xiaoping; Tsankova, Nadejda M.; Guilfoyle, Eileen; McKhann, Guy M.

    2014-01-01

    To examine the diversity of astrocytes in the human brain, we immunostained surgical specimens of temporal cortex and hippocampus and autopsy brains for CD44, a plasma membrane protein and extracellular matrix receptor. CD44 antibodies outline the details of astrocyte morphology to a degree not possible with glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) antibodies. CD44+ astrocytes could be subdivided into two groups. First, CD44+ astrocytes with long processes were consistently found in the subpial area (“interlaminar” astrocytes), the deep isocortical layers, and the hippocampus. Many of these processes ended on blood vessels. Some were also found adjacent to large blood vessels, from which they extended long processes. We observed these CD44+, long-process astrocytes in every brain we examined, from fetal to adult. These astrocytes generally displayed high immunostaining for GFAP, S100β, and CD44, but low immunostaining for glutamine synthetase, excitatory amino-acid transporter 1 (EAAT1), and EAAT2. Aquaporin 4 (AQP4) appeared distributed all over the cell bodies and processes of the CD44+ astrocytes, while, in contrast, AQP4 localized to perivascular end feet in the CD44− protoplasmic astrocytes. Second, there were CD44+ astrocytes without long processes in the cortex. These were not present during gestation or at birth, and in adult brains varied substantially in number, shape, and immunohistochemical phenotype. Many of these displayed a “mixed” morphological and immunocytochemical phenotype between protoplasmic and fibrous astrocytes. We conclude that the diversity of astrocyte populations in the isocortex and archicortex in the human brain reflects both intrinsic and acquired phenotypes, the latter perhaps representing a shift from CD44− “protoplasmic” to CD44+ “fibrous”-like astrocytes. PMID:24501367

  18. Traumatically injured astrocytes release a proteomic signature modulated by STAT3 dependent cell survival

    PubMed Central

    Levine, Jaclynn; Kwon, Eunice; Paez, Pablo; Yan, Weihong; Czerwieniec, Gregg; Loo, Joseph A.; Sofroniew, Michael V.; Wanner, Ina-Beate

    2015-01-01

    Molecular markers associated with CNS injury are of diagnostic interest. Mechanical trauma generates cellular deformation associated with membrane permeability with unknown molecular consequences. We used an in vitro model of stretch-injury and proteomic analyses to determine protein changes in murine astrocytes and their surrounding fluids. Abrupt pressure-pulse stretching resulted in the rapid release of 59 astrocytic proteins with profiles reflecting cell injury and cell death, i.e. mechanoporation and cell lysis. This acute trauma-release proteome was overrepresented with metabolic proteins compared to the uninjured cellular proteome, bearing relevance for post-traumatic metabolic depression. Astrocyte-specific deletion of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3-CKO) resulted in reduced stretch-injury tolerance, elevated necrosis and increased protein release. Consistent with more lysed cells, more protein complexes, nuclear and transport proteins were released from STAT3-CKO versus non-transgenic astrocytes. STAT3-CKO astrocytes had reduced basal expression of GFAP, lactate dehydrogenase B (LDHB), aldolase C (ALDOC) and astrocytic phosphoprotein 15 (PEA15), and elevated levels of tropomyosin (TPM4) and α actinin 4 (ACTN4). Stretching caused STAT3 dependent cellular depletion of PEA15 and GFAP, and its filament disassembly in subpopulations of injured astrocytes. PEA15 and ALDOC signals were low in injured astrocytes acutely after mouse spinal cord crush injury and robustly expressed in reactive astrocytes one day post-injury. In contrast, α crystallin (CRYAB) was present in acutely injured astrocytes, and absent from uninjured and reactive astrocytes, demonstrating novel marker differences among post-injury astrocytes. These findings reveal a proteomic signature of traumatically-injured astrocytes reflecting STAT3-dependent cellular survival with potential diagnostic value. PMID:26683444

  19. Astrocytes surviving severe stress can still protect neighboring neurons from proteotoxic injury

    PubMed Central

    Gleixner, Amanda M.; Posimo, Jessica M.; Pant, Deepti B.; Henderson, Matthew P.; Leak, Rehana K.

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are one of the major cell types to combat cellular stress and protect neighboring neurons from injury. In order to fulfill this important role, astrocytes must sense and respond to toxic stimuli, perhaps including stimuli that are severely stressful and kill some of the astrocytes. The present study demonstrates that primary astrocytes that managed to survive severe proteotoxic stress were protected against subsequent challenges. These findings suggest that the phenomenon of preconditioning or tolerance can be extended from mild to severe stress for this cell type. Astrocytic stress adaptation lasted at least 96 hours, the longest interval tested. Heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) was raised in stressed astrocytes, but inhibition of neither Hsp70 nor Hsp32 activity abolished their resistance against a second proteotoxic challenge. Only inhibition of glutathione synthesis abolished astrocytic stress adaptation, consistent with our previous report. Primary neurons were plated upon previously stressed astrocytes and the co-cultures were then exposed to another proteotoxic challenge. Severely stressed astrocytes were still able to protect neighboring neurons against this injury and the protection was unexpectedly independent of glutathione synthesis. Stressed astrocytes were even able to protect neurons after simultaneous application of proteasome and Hsp70 inhibitors, which otherwise elicited synergistic, severe loss of neurons when applied together. Astrocyte-induced neuroprotection against proteotoxicity was not elicited with astrocyte-conditioned media, suggesting that physical cell-to-cell contacts may be essential. These findings suggest that astrocytes may adapt to severe stress so that they can continue to protect neighboring cell types from profound injury. PMID:26374549

  20. Astrocytes Surviving Severe Stress Can Still Protect Neighboring Neurons from Proteotoxic Injury.

    PubMed

    Gleixner, Amanda M; Posimo, Jessica M; Pant, Deepti B; Henderson, Matthew P; Leak, Rehana K

    2016-09-01

    Astrocytes are one of the major cell types to combat cellular stress and protect neighboring neurons from injury. In order to fulfill this important role, astrocytes must sense and respond to toxic stimuli, perhaps including stimuli that are severely stressful and kill some of the astrocytes. The present study demonstrates that primary astrocytes that managed to survive severe proteotoxic stress were protected against subsequent challenges. These findings suggest that the phenomenon of preconditioning or tolerance can be extended from mild to severe stress for this cell type. Astrocytic stress adaptation lasted at least 96 h, the longest interval tested. Heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) was raised in stressed astrocytes, but inhibition of neither Hsp70 nor Hsp32 activity abolished their resistance against a second proteotoxic challenge. Only inhibition of glutathione synthesis abolished astrocytic stress adaptation, consistent with our previous report. Primary neurons were plated upon previously stressed astrocytes, and the cocultures were then exposed to another proteotoxic challenge. Severely stressed astrocytes were still able to protect neighboring neurons against this injury, and the protection was unexpectedly independent of glutathione synthesis. Stressed astrocytes were even able to protect neurons after simultaneous application of proteasome and Hsp70 inhibitors, which otherwise elicited synergistic, severe loss of neurons when applied together. Astrocyte-induced neuroprotection against proteotoxicity was not elicited with astrocyte-conditioned media, suggesting that physical cell-to-cell contacts may be essential. These findings suggest that astrocytes may adapt to severe stress so that they can continue to protect neighboring cell types from profound injury.

  1. Selective deletion of apolipoprotein E in astrocytes ameliorates the spatial learning and memory deficits in Alzheimer's disease (APP/PS1) mice by inhibiting TGF-β/Smad2/STAT3 signaling.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jin-Yu; Sun, Jian; Ji, Chun-Mei; Shen, Lin; Chen, Zhong-Jun; Xie, Peng; Sun, Yuan-Zhao; Yu, Ru-Tong

    2017-06-01

    . These findings enhance our understanding of the role of apoE, derived from astrocytes, in AD and suggest it to be a potential biomarker and therapeutic target for AD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. From the Cover: AstrocytesAre Protective Against Chlorpyrifos Developmental Neurotoxicity in Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Astrocyte-Neuron Cocultures.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xian; Yang, Xiangkun; Majumder, Anirban; Swetenburg, Raymond; Goodfellow, Forrest T; Bartlett, Michael G; Stice, Steven L

    2017-06-01

    Human neural progenitor cells are capable of independent, directed differentiation into astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and neurons and thus offer a potential cell source for developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) systems. Human neural progenitor-derived astrocyte-neuron cocultured at defined ratios mimic cellular heterogeneity and interaction in the central nervous system. Cytochrome P450 enzymes are expressed at a relatively high level in astrocytes and may play a critical role in the biotransformation of endogenous or exogenous compounds, including chlorpyrifos, an organophosphate insecticide that affects the central nervous system. P450 enzymes metabolize chlorpyrifos to chlorpyrifos-oxon, which is then metabolized primarily to 3, 5, 6-trichloropyridinol in addition to diethylphosphate and diethylthiophosphate. These end metabolites are less neurotoxic than chlorpyrifos and chlorpyrifos-oxon. Our objective was to identify the interactive role of astrocytes and neurons in chlorpyrifos-induced human DNT. In neuron-only cultures, chlorpyrifos inhibited neurite length, neurite number and branch points per neuron in a dose-dependent manner during a 48 h exposure, starting at 10 μM. However, in astrocyte-neuron cocultures, astrocytes protected neurons from the effects of chlorpyrifos at higher concentrations, up to and including 30 μM chlorpyrifos and endogenous astrocyte P450 enzymes effectively metabolized chlorpyrifos. The P450 inhibitor SKF525A partly negated the protective effect of astrocytes, allowing reduction in branch points with chlorpyrifos (10 μM). Thus, the scalable and defined astrocyte-neuron cocultures model that we established here has potentially identified a role for P450 enzymes in astrocytic neuroprotection against chlorpyrifos and provides a novel model for addressing DNT in a more accurate multicellular environment. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology. All rights reserved. For

  3. Extracellular Electrophysiological Measurements of Cooperative Signals in Astrocytes Populations.

    PubMed

    Mestre, Ana L G; Inácio, Pedro M C; Elamine, Youssef; Asgarifar, Sanaz; Lourenço, Ana S; Cristiano, Maria L S; Aguiar, Paulo; Medeiros, Maria C R; Araújo, Inês M; Ventura, João; Gomes, Henrique L

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are neuroglial cells that exhibit functional electrical properties sensitive to neuronal activity and capable of modulating neurotransmission. Thus, electrophysiological recordings of astroglial activity are very attractive to study the dynamics of glial signaling. This contribution reports on the use of ultra-sensitive planar electrodes combined with low noise and low frequency amplifiers that enable the detection of extracellular signals produced by primary cultures of astrocytes isolated from mouse cerebral cortex. Recorded activity is characterized by spontaneous bursts comprised of discrete signals with pronounced changes on the signal rate and amplitude. Weak and sporadic signals become synchronized and evolve with time to higher amplitude signals with a quasi-periodic behavior, revealing a cooperative signaling process. The methodology presented herewith enables the study of ionic fluctuations of population of cells, complementing the single cells observation by calcium imaging as well as by patch-clamp techniques.

  4. Extracellular Electrophysiological Measurements of Cooperative Signals in Astrocytes Populations

    PubMed Central

    Mestre, Ana L. G.; Inácio, Pedro M. C.; Elamine, Youssef; Asgarifar, Sanaz; Lourenço, Ana S.; Cristiano, Maria L. S.; Aguiar, Paulo; Medeiros, Maria C. R.; Araújo, Inês M.; Ventura, João; Gomes, Henrique L.

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes are neuroglial cells that exhibit functional electrical properties sensitive to neuronal activity and capable of modulating neurotransmission. Thus, electrophysiological recordings of astroglial activity are very attractive to study the dynamics of glial signaling. This contribution reports on the use of ultra-sensitive planar electrodes combined with low noise and low frequency amplifiers that enable the detection of extracellular signals produced by primary cultures of astrocytes isolated from mouse cerebral cortex. Recorded activity is characterized by spontaneous bursts comprised of discrete signals with pronounced changes on the signal rate and amplitude. Weak and sporadic signals become synchronized and evolve with time to higher amplitude signals with a quasi-periodic behavior, revealing a cooperative signaling process. The methodology presented herewith enables the study of ionic fluctuations of population of cells, complementing the single cells observation by calcium imaging as well as by patch-clamp techniques. PMID:29109679

  5. Involvement of Astrocytes in Mediating the Central Effects of Ghrelin.

    PubMed

    Frago, Laura M; Chowen, Julie A

    2017-03-02

    Although astrocytes are the most abundant cells in the mammalian brain, much remains to be learned about their molecular and functional features. Astrocytes express receptors for numerous hormones and metabolic factors, including the appetite-promoting hormone ghrelin. The metabolic effects of ghrelin are largely opposite to those of leptin, as it stimulates food intake and decreases energy expenditure. Ghrelin is also involved in glucose-sensing and glucose homeostasis. The widespread expression of the ghrelin receptor in the central nervous system suggests that this hormone is not only involved in metabolism, but also in other essential functions in the brain. In fact, ghrelin has been shown to promote cell survival and neuroprotection, with some studies exploring the use of ghrelin as a therapeutic agent against metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we highlight the possible role of glial cells as mediators of ghrelin's actions within the brain.

  6. Involvement of Astrocytes in Mediating the Central Effects of Ghrelin

    PubMed Central

    Frago, Laura M.; Chowen, Julie A.

    2017-01-01

    Although astrocytes are the most abundant cells in the mammalian brain, much remains to be learned about their molecular and functional features. Astrocytes express receptors for numerous hormones and metabolic factors, including the appetite-promoting hormone ghrelin. The metabolic effects of ghrelin are largely opposite to those of leptin, as it stimulates food intake and decreases energy expenditure. Ghrelin is also involved in glucose-sensing and glucose homeostasis. The widespread expression of the ghrelin receptor in the central nervous system suggests that this hormone is not only involved in metabolism, but also in other essential functions in the brain. In fact, ghrelin has been shown to promote cell survival and neuroprotection, with some studies exploring the use of ghrelin as a therapeutic agent against metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we highlight the possible role of glial cells as mediators of ghrelin’s actions within the brain. PMID:28257088

  7. The increase in the number of astrocytes in the total cerebral ischemia model in rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kudabayeva, M.; Kisel, A.; Chernysheva, G.; Smol'yakova, V.; Plotnikov, M.; Khodanovich, M.

    2017-08-01

    Astrocytes are the most abundant cell class in the CNS. Astrocytic therapies have a huge potential for neuronal repair after stroke. The majority of brain stroke studies address the damage to neurons. Modern studies turn to the usage of morphological and functional changes in astroglial cells after stroke in regenerative medicine. Our study is focused on the changes in the number of astrocytes in the hippocampus (where new glia cells divide) after brain ischemia. Ischemia was modeled by occlusion of tr. brachiocephalicus, a. subclavia sin., a. carotis communis sin. Astrocytes were determined using immunohistochemical labeling with anti GFAP antibody. We found out that the number of astrocytes increased on the 10th and 30th days after stroke in the CA1, CA2 fields, the granular layer of dentate gyrus (GrDG) and hilus. The morphology of astrocytes became reactive in these regions. Therefore, our results revealed long-term reactive astrogliosis in the hippocampus region after total ischemia in rats.

  8. Distinct functional states of astrocytes during sleep and wakefulness: Is norepinephrine the master regulator?

    PubMed Central

    O’Donnell, John; Ding, Fengfei; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes are the chief supportive cells in the central nervous system, but work over the past 20 years have documented that astrocytes also contribute to complex neural processes, such as working memory. Recent discoveries of norepinephrine-mediated astrocytic Ca2+ responses have raised the possibility that astrocytic activity in the adult brain is driven by global responses to changes in behavioral state. Moreover, analysis of the interstitial space volume suggests that astrocytes may undergo changes in cell volume in response to activation of norepinephrine receptors. This review will focus on what is known about astrocytic functions within the nervous system, and how these functions interrelate with rapid changes in behavioral state mediated by norepinephrine signaling. PMID:26618103

  9. High-frequency voltage oscillations in cultured astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Fleischer, Wiebke; Theiss, Stephan; Slotta, Johannes; Holland, Christine; Schnitzler, Alfons

    2015-01-01

    Because of their close interaction with neuronal physiology, astrocytes can modulate brain function in multiple ways. Here, we demonstrate a yet unknown astrocytic phenomenon: Astrocytes cultured on microelectrode arrays (MEAs) exhibited extracellular voltage fluctuations in a broad frequency spectrum (100–600 Hz) after electrical stimulation. These aperiodic high-frequency oscillations (HFOs) could last several seconds and did not spread across the MEA. The voltage-gated calcium channel antagonist cilnidipine dose-dependently decreased the power of the oscillations. While intracellular calcium was pivotal, incubation with bafilomycin A1 showed that vesicular release of transmitters played only a minor role in the emergence of HFOs. Gap junctions and volume-regulated anionic channels had just as little functional impact, which was demonstrated by the addition of carbenoxolone (100 μmol/L) and NPPB (100 μmol/L). Hyperpolarization with low potassium in the extracellular solution (2 mmol/L) dramatically raised oscillation power. A similar effect was seen when we added extra sodium (+50 mmol/L) or if we replaced it with NMDG+ (50 mmol/L). The purinergic receptor antagonist PPADS suppressed the oscillation power, while the agonist ATP (100 μmol/L) had only an increasing effect when the bath solution pH was slightly lowered to pH 7.2. From these observations, we conclude that astrocytic voltage oscillations are triggered by activation of voltage-gated calcium channels and driven by a downstream influx of cations through channels that are permeable for large ions such as NMDG+. Most likely candidates are subtypes of pore-forming P2X channels with a low affinity for ATP. PMID:25969464

  10. Methamphetamine compromises gap junctional communication in astrocytes and neurons.

    PubMed

    Castellano, Paul; Nwagbo, Chisom; Martinez, Luis R; Eugenin, Eliseo A

    2016-05-01

    Methamphetamine (meth) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that results in psychological and physical dependency. The long-term effects of meth within the CNS include neuronal plasticity changes, blood-brain barrier compromise, inflammation, electrical dysfunction, neuronal/glial toxicity, and an increased risk to infectious diseases including HIV. Most of the reported meth effects in the CNS are related to dysregulation of chemical synapses by altering the release and uptake of neurotransmitters, especially dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. However, little is known about the effects of meth on connexin (Cx) containing channels, such as gap junctions (GJ) and hemichannels (HC). We examined the effects of meth on Cx expression, function, and its role in NeuroAIDS. We found that meth altered Cx expression and localization, decreased GJ communication between neurons and astrocytes, and induced the opening of Cx43/Cx36 HC. Furthermore, we found that these changes in GJ and HC induced by meth treatment were mediated by activation of dopamine receptors, suggesting that dysregulation of dopamine signaling induced by meth is essential for GJ and HC compromise. Meth-induced changes in GJ and HC contributed to amplified CNS toxicity by dysregulating glutamate metabolism and increasing the susceptibility of neurons and astrocytes to bystander apoptosis induced by HIV. Together, our results indicate that connexin containing channels, GJ and HC, are essential in the pathogenesis of meth and increase the sensitivity of the CNS to HIV CNS disease. Methamphetamine (meth) is an extremely addictive central nervous system stimulant. Meth reduced gap junctional (GJ) communication by inducing internalization of connexin-43 (Cx43) in astrocytes and reducing expression of Cx36 in neurons by a mechanism involving activation of dopamine receptors (see cartoon). Meth-induced changes in Cx containing channels increased extracellular levels of glutamate and resulted in higher

  11. Exposure of rat hippocampal astrocytes to Ziram increases oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Matei, Ann-Marie; Trombetta, Louis D

    2016-04-01

    Pesticides have been shown in several studies to be the leading candidates of environmental toxins and may contribute to the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Ziram (zinc-bis(dimethyldithiocarbamate)) is an agricultural dithiocarbamate fungicide that is used to treat a variety of plant diseases. In spite of their generally acknowledged low toxicity, dithiocarbamates are known to cause a wide range of neurobehavioral effects as well as neuropathological changes in the brain. Astrocytes play a key role in normal brain physiology and in the pathology of the nervous system. This investigation studied the effects of 1.0 µM Ziram on rat hippocampal astrocytes. The thiobarbituric acid reactive substance assay performed showed a significant increase in malondialdehyde, a product of lipid peroxidation, in the Ziram-treated cells. Biochemical analysis also revealed a significant increase in the induction of 70 kDa heat shock and heme oxygenase 1 stress proteins. In addition, an increase of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and a significant increase in oxidized glutathione (GSSG) were observed in the Ziram-treated cells. The ratio GSH to GSSG calculated from the treated cells was also decreased. Light and transmission electron microscopy supported the biochemical findings in Ziram-treated astrocytes. This data suggest that the cytotoxic effects observed with Ziram treatments may be related to the increase of oxidative stress. © The Author(s) 2013.

  12. Astrocytes and extracellular matrix in extrasynaptic volume transmission.

    PubMed

    Vargová, Lýdia; Syková, Eva

    2014-10-19

    Volume transmission is a form of intercellular communication that does not require synapses; it is based on the diffusion of neuroactive substances across the brain extracellular space (ECS) and their binding to extrasynaptic high-affinity receptors on neurons or glia. Extracellular diffusion is restricted by the limited volume of the ECS, which is described by the ECS volume fraction α, and the presence of diffusion barriers, reflected by tortuosity λ, that are created, for example, by fine astrocytic processes or extracellular matrix (ECM) molecules. Organized astrocytic processes, ECM scaffolds or myelin sheets channel the extracellular diffusion so that it is facilitated in a certain direction, i.e. anisotropic. The diffusion properties of the ECS are profoundly influenced by various processes such as the swelling and morphological rebuilding of astrocytes during either transient or persisting physiological or pathological states, or the remodelling of the ECM in tumorous or epileptogenic tissue, during Alzheimer's disease, after enzymatic treatment or in transgenic animals. The changing diffusion properties of the ECM influence neuron-glia interaction, learning abilities, the extent of neuronal damage and even cell migration. From a clinical point of view, diffusion parameter changes occurring during pathological states could be important for diagnosis, drug delivery and treatment. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  13. Glucose and hypothalamic astrocytes: More than a fueling role?

    PubMed

    Leloup, C; Allard, C; Carneiro, L; Fioramonti, X; Collins, S; Pénicaud, L

    2016-05-26

    Brain plays a central role in energy homeostasis continuously integrating numerous peripheral signals such as circulating nutrients, and in particular blood glucose level, a variable that must be highly regulated. Then, the brain orchestrates adaptive responses to modulate food intake and peripheral organs activity in order to achieve the fine tuning of glycemia. More than fifty years ago, the presence of glucose-sensitive neurons was discovered in the hypothalamus, but what makes them specific and identifiable still remains disconnected from their electrophysiological signature. On the other hand, astrocytes represent the major class of macroglial cells and are now recognized to support an increasing number of neuronal functions. One of these functions consists in the regulation of energy homeostasis through neuronal fueling and nutrient sensing. Twenty years ago, we discovered that the glucose transporter GLUT2, the canonical "glucosensor" of the pancreatic beta-cell together with the glucokinase, was also present in astrocytes and participated in hypothalamic glucose sensing. Since then, many studies have identified other actors and emphasized the astroglial participation in this mechanism. Growing evidence suggest that astrocytes form a complex network and have to be considered as spatially coordinated and regulated metabolic units. In this review we aim to provide an updated view of the molecular and respective cellular pathways involved in hypothalamic glucose sensing, and their relevance in physiological and pathological states. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Activation of phagocytic activity in astrocytes by reduced expression of the inflammasome component ASC and its implication in a mouse model of Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Couturier, Julien; Stancu, Ilie-Cosmin; Schakman, Olivier; Pierrot, Nathalie; Huaux, François; Kienlen-Campard, Pascal; Dewachter, Ilse; Octave, Jean-Noël

    2016-01-27

    The proinflammatory cytokine interleukin-1β (IL-1β) is overexpressed in Alzheimer disease (AD) as a key regulator of neuroinflammation. Amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide triggers activation of inflammasomes, protein complexes responsible for IL-1β maturation in microglial cells. Downregulation of NALP3 (NACHT, LRR, and PYD domains-containing protein 3) inflammasome has been shown to decrease amyloid load and rescue cognitive deficits in a mouse model of AD. Whereas activation of inflammasome in microglial cells has been described in AD, no data are currently available concerning activation of inflammasome in astrocytes, although they are involved in inflammatory response and phagocytosis. Here, by targeting the inflammasome adaptor protein ASC (apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing a CARD domain), we investigated the influence of activation of the inflammasome on the phagocytic activity of astrocytes. We used an ASC knockout mouse model, as ASC is a central protein in the inflammasome, acting as an adaptor and stabilizer of the complex and thus critical for its activation. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-primed primary cultures of astrocytes from newborn mice were utilized to evaluate Aβ-induced inflammasome activation by measuring IL-1β release by ECLIA (electro-chemiluminescence immunoassay). Phagocytosis efficiency was measured by incorporation of bioparticles, and the release of the chemokine CCL3 (C-C motif ligand 3) was measured by ECLIA. ASC mice were crossbred with 5xFAD (familial Alzheimer disease) mice and tested for spatial reference memory using the Morris water maze (MWM) at 7-8 months of age. Amyloid load and CCL3 were quantified by thioflavine S staining and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), respectively. Cultured astrocytes primed with LPS and treated with Aβ showed an ASC-dependent production of IL-1β resulting from inflammasome activation mediated by Aβ phagocytosis and cathepsin B enzymatic activity. ASC

  15. Stretch-induced Ca2+ independent ATP release in hippocampal astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Yingfei; Teng, Sasa; Zheng, Lianghong; Sun, Suhua; Li, Jie; Guo, Ning; Li, Mingli; Wang, Li; Zhu, Feipeng; Wang, Changhe; Rao, Zhiren; Zhou, Zhuan

    2018-02-28

    Similar to neurons, astrocytes actively participate in synaptic transmission via releasing gliotransmitters. The Ca 2+ -dependent release of gliotransmitters includes glutamate and ATP. Following an 'on-cell-like' mechanical stimulus to a single astrocyte, Ca 2+ independent single, large, non-quantal, ATP release occurs. Astrocytic ATP release is inhibited by either selective antagonist treatment or genetic knockdown of P2X7 receptor channels. Our work suggests that ATP can be released from astrocytes via two independent pathways in hippocampal astrocytes; in addition to the known Ca 2+ -dependent vesicular release, larger non-quantal ATP release depends on P2X7 channels following mechanical stretch. Astrocytic ATP release is essential for brain functions such as synaptic long-term potentiation for learning and memory. However, whether and how ATP is released via exocytosis remains hotly debated. All previous studies of non-vesicular ATP release have used indirect assays. By contrast, two recent studies report vesicular ATP release using more direct assays. In the present study, using patch clamped 'ATP-sniffer cells', we re-investigated astrocytic ATP release at single-vesicle resolution in hippocampal astrocytes. Following an 'on-cell-like' mechanical stimulus of a single astrocyte, a Ca 2+ independent single large non-quantal ATP release occurred, in contrast to the Ca 2+ -dependent multiple small quantal ATP release in a chromaffin cell. The mechanical stimulation-induced ATP release from an astrocyte was inhibited by either exposure to a selective antagonist or genetic knockdown of P2X7 receptor channels. Functional P2X7 channels were expressed in astrocytes in hippocampal brain slices. Thus, in addition to small quantal ATP release, larger non-quantal ATP release depends on P2X7 channels in astrocytes. © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2018 The Physiological Society.

  16. Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-06-01

    Tsc1-deficient astrocytes on neuronal morphology and neuronal activity associated with seizures . 2. KEY WORDS epilepsy , seizure , tuberous sclerosis...AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-12-1-0196 TITLE: Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder PRINCIPAL...TITLE AND SUBTITLE Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT

  17. Synchronized Astrocytic Ca2+ Responses in Neurovascular Coupling during Somatosensory Stimulation and for the Resting State.

    PubMed

    Gu, Xiaochun; Chen, Wei; Volkow, Nora D; Koretsky, Alan P; Du, Congwu; Pan, Yingtian

    2018-06-26

    The role of astrocytes in neurovascular coupling (NVC) is unclear. Here, we applied a multimodality imaging approach to concomitantly measure synchronized neuronal or astrocytic Ca 2+ and hemodynamic changes in the mouse somatosensory cortex at rest and during sensory electrical stimulation. Strikingly, we found that low-frequency stimulation (0.3-1 Hz), which consistently evokes fast neuronal Ca 2+ transients (6.0 ± 2.7 ms latency) that always precede vascular responses, does not always elicit astrocytic Ca 2+ transients (313 ± 65 ms latency). However, the magnitude of the hemodynamic response is increased when astrocytic transients occur, suggesting a facilitatory role of astrocytes in NVC. High-frequency stimulation (5-10 Hz) consistently evokes a large, delayed astrocytic Ca 2+ accumulation (3.48 ± 0.09 s latency) that is temporarily associated with vasoconstriction, suggesting a role for astrocytes in resetting NVC. At rest, neuronal, but not astrocytic, Ca 2+ fluctuations correlate with hemodynamic low-frequency oscillations. Taken together, these results support a role for astrocytes in modulating, but not triggering, NVC. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. An Efficient Platform for Astrocyte Differentiation from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Tcw, Julia; Wang, Minghui; Pimenova, Anna A; Bowles, Kathryn R; Hartley, Brigham J; Lacin, Emre; Machlovi, Saima I; Abdelaal, Rawan; Karch, Celeste M; Phatnani, Hemali; Slesinger, Paul A; Zhang, Bin; Goate, Alison M; Brennand, Kristen J

    2017-08-08

    Growing evidence implicates the importance of glia, particularly astrocytes, in neurological and psychiatric diseases. Here, we describe a rapid and robust method for the differentiation of highly pure populations of replicative astrocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), via a neural progenitor cell (NPC) intermediate. We evaluated this protocol across 42 NPC lines (derived from 30 individuals). Transcriptomic analysis demonstrated that hiPSC-astrocytes from four individuals are highly similar to primary human fetal astrocytes and characteristic of a non-reactive state. hiPSC-astrocytes respond to inflammatory stimulants, display phagocytic capacity, and enhance microglial phagocytosis. hiPSC-astrocytes also possess spontaneous calcium transient activity. Our protocol is a reproducible, straightforward (single medium), and rapid (<30 days) method to generate populations of hiPSC-astrocytes that can be used for neuron-astrocyte and microglia-astrocyte co-cultures for the study of neuropsychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Functional Characterization of Resting and Adenovirus-Induced Reactive Astrocytes in Three-Dimensional Culture

    PubMed Central

    Woo, Junsung; Im, Sun-Kyoung; Chun, Heejung; Jung, Soon-Young; Oh, Soo-Jin; Choi, Nakwon

    2017-01-01

    Brain is a rich environment where neurons and glia interact with neighboring cells as well as extracellular matrix in three-dimensional (3D) space. Astrocytes, which are the most abundant cells in the mammalian brain, reside in 3D space and extend highly branched processes that form microdomains and contact synapses. It has been suggested that astrocytes cultured in 3D might be maintained in a less reactive state as compared to those growing in a traditional, two-dimensional (2D) monolayer culture. However, the functional characterization of the astrocytes in 3D culture has been lacking. Here we cocultured neurons and astrocytes in 3D and examined the morphological, molecular biological, and electrophysiological properties of the 3D-cultured hippocampal astrocytes. In our 3D neuron-astrocyte coculture, astrocytes showed a typical morphology of a small soma with many branches and exhibited a unique membrane property of passive conductance, more closely resembling their native in vivo counterparts. Moreover, we also induced reactive astrocytosis in culture by infecting with high-titer adenovirus to mimic pathophysiological conditions in vivo. Adenoviral infection induced morphological changes in astrocytes, increased passive conductance, and increased GABA content as well as tonic GABA release, which are characteristics of reactive gliosis. Together, our study presents a powerful in vitro model resembling both physiological and pathophysiological conditions in vivo, and thereby provides a versatile experimental tool for studying various neurological diseases that accompany reactive astrocytes. PMID:28680301

  20. Mutant Huntingtin Inhibits αB-Crystallin Expression and Impairs Exosome Secretion from Astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Hong, Yan; Zhao, Ting; Li, Xiao-Jiang; Li, Shihua

    2017-09-27

    In the brain, astrocytes secrete diverse substances that regulate neuronal function and viability. Exosomes, which are vesicles produced through the formation of multivesicular bodies and their subsequent fusion with the plasma membrane, are also released from astrocytes via exocytotic secretion. Astrocytic exosomes carry heat shock proteins that can reduce the cellular toxicity of misfolded proteins and prevent neurodegeneration. Although mutant huntingtin (mHtt) affects multiple functions of astrocytes, it remains unknown whether mHtt impairs the production of exosomes from astrocytes. We found that mHtt is not present in astrocytic exosomes, but can decrease exosome secretion from astrocytes in HD140Q knock-in (KI) mice. N-terminal mHtt accumulates in the nuclei and forms aggregates, causing decreased secretion of exosomes from cultured astrocytes. Consistently, there is a significant decrease in secreted exosomes in both female and male HD KI mouse striatum in which abundant nuclear mHtt aggregates are present. Conversely, injection of astrocytic exosomes into the striatum of HD140Q KI mice reduces the density of mHtt aggregates. Further, mHtt in astrocytes decreased the expression of αB-crystallin, a small heat shock protein that is enriched in astrocytes and mediates exosome secretion, by reducing the association of Sp1 with the enhancer of the α B-crystallin gene. Importantly, overexpression of αB-crystallin rescues defective exosome release from HD astrocytes as well as mHtt aggregates in the striatum of HD140Q KI mice. Our results demonstrate that mHtt reduces the expression of αB-crystallin in astrocytes to decrease exosome secretion in the HD brains, contributing to non-cell-autonomous neurotoxicity in HD. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by selective neurodegeneration that preferentially occurs in the striatal medium spiny neurons. Recent studies in different HD mouse models demonstrated that dysfunction of

  1. Mutant Huntingtin Inhibits αB-Crystallin Expression and Impairs Exosome Secretion from Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    In the brain, astrocytes secrete diverse substances that regulate neuronal function and viability. Exosomes, which are vesicles produced through the formation of multivesicular bodies and their subsequent fusion with the plasma membrane, are also released from astrocytes via exocytotic secretion. Astrocytic exosomes carry heat shock proteins that can reduce the cellular toxicity of misfolded proteins and prevent neurodegeneration. Although mutant huntingtin (mHtt) affects multiple functions of astrocytes, it remains unknown whether mHtt impairs the production of exosomes from astrocytes. We found that mHtt is not present in astrocytic exosomes, but can decrease exosome secretion from astrocytes in HD140Q knock-in (KI) mice. N-terminal mHtt accumulates in the nuclei and forms aggregates, causing decreased secretion of exosomes from cultured astrocytes. Consistently, there is a significant decrease in secreted exosomes in both female and male HD KI mouse striatum in which abundant nuclear mHtt aggregates are present. Conversely, injection of astrocytic exosomes into the striatum of HD140Q KI mice reduces the density of mHtt aggregates. Further, mHtt in astrocytes decreased the expression of αB-crystallin, a small heat shock protein that is enriched in astrocytes and mediates exosome secretion, by reducing the association of Sp1 with the enhancer of the αB-crystallin gene. Importantly, overexpression of αB-crystallin rescues defective exosome release from HD astrocytes as well as mHtt aggregates in the striatum of HD140Q KI mice. Our results demonstrate that mHtt reduces the expression of αB-crystallin in astrocytes to decrease exosome secretion in the HD brains, contributing to non–cell-autonomous neurotoxicity in HD. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Huntington's disease (HD) is characterized by selective neurodegeneration that preferentially occurs in the striatal medium spiny neurons. Recent studies in different HD mouse models demonstrated that dysfunction of

  2. Astrocyte-neuron crosstalk regulates the expression and subcellular localization of carbohydrate metabolism enzymes.

    PubMed

    Mamczur, Piotr; Borsuk, Borys; Paszko, Jadwiga; Sas, Zuzanna; Mozrzymas, Jerzy; Wiśniewski, Jacek R; Gizak, Agnieszka; Rakus, Dariusz

    2015-02-01

    Astrocytes releasing glucose- and/or glycogen-derived lactate and glutamine play a crucial role in shaping neuronal function and plasticity. Little is known, however, how metabolic functions of astrocytes, e.g., their ability to degrade glucosyl units, are affected by the presence of neurons. To address this issue we carried out experiments which demonstrated that co-culturing of rat hippocampal astrocytes with neurons significantly elevates the level of mRNA and protein for crucial enzymes of glycolysis (phosphofructokinase, aldolase, and pyruvate kinase), glycogen metabolism (glycogen synthase and glycogen phosphorylase), and glutamine synthetase in astrocytes. Simultaneously, the decrease of the capability of neurons to metabolize glucose and glutamine is observed. We provide evidence that neurons alter the expression of astrocytic enzymes by secretion of as yet unknown molecule(s) into the extracellular fluid. Moreover, our data demonstrate that almost all studied enzymes may localize in astrocytic nuclei and this localization is affected by the co-culturing with neurons which also reduces proliferative activity of astrocytes. Our results provide the first experimental evidence that the astrocyte-neuron crosstalk substantially affects the expression of basal metabolic enzymes in the both types of cells and influences their subcellular localization in astrocytes. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Layer-specific morphological and molecular differences in neocortical astrocytes and their dependence on neuronal layers.

    PubMed

    Lanjakornsiripan, Darin; Pior, Baek-Jun; Kawaguchi, Daichi; Furutachi, Shohei; Tahara, Tomoaki; Katsuyama, Yu; Suzuki, Yutaka; Fukazawa, Yugo; Gotoh, Yukiko

    2018-04-24

    Non-pial neocortical astrocytes have historically been thought to comprise largely a nondiverse population of protoplasmic astrocytes. Here we show that astrocytes of the mouse somatosensory cortex manifest layer-specific morphological and molecular differences. Two- and three-dimensional observations revealed that astrocytes in the different layers possess distinct morphologies as reflected by differences in cell orientation, territorial volume, and arborization. The extent of ensheathment of synaptic clefts by astrocytes in layer II/III was greater than that by those in layer VI. Moreover, differences in gene expression were observed between upper-layer and deep-layer astrocytes. Importantly, layer-specific differences in astrocyte properties were abrogated in reeler and Dab1 conditional knockout mice, in which neuronal layers are disturbed, suggesting that neuronal layers are a prerequisite for the observed morphological and molecular differences of neocortical astrocytes. This study thus demonstrates the existence of layer-specific interactions between neurons and astrocytes, which may underlie their layer-specific functions.

  4. Interlukin-18 Is a Pivot Regulatory Factor on Matrix Metalloproteinase-13 Expression and Brain Astrocytic Migration.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jia-Hong; Tsai, Chon-Haw; Lin, Hsiao-Yun; Huang, Chien-Fang; Leung, Yuk-Man; Lai, Sheng-Wei; Tsai, Cheng-Fang; Chang, Pei-Chun; Lu, Dah-Yuu; Lin, Chingju

    2016-11-01

    The expression of matrix metalloproteinase-13 (MMP-13) has been shown to be elevated in some pathophysiological conditions and is involved in the degradation of extracellular matrix in astrocytes. In current study, the function of MMP-13 was further investigated. The conditioned medium (CM) collected from activated microglia increased interleukin (IL)-18 production and enhanced MMP-13 expression in astrocytes. Furthermore, treatment with recombinant IL-18 increased MMP-13 protein and mRNA levels in astrocytes. Recombinant IL-18 stimulation also increased the enzymatic activity of MMP-13 and the migratory activity of astrocytes, while administration of MMP-13 or pan-MMP inhibitors antagonized IL-18-induced migratory activity of astrocytes. In addition, administration of recombinant IL-18 to astrocytes led to the phosphorylation of JNK, Akt, or PKCδ, and treatment of astrocytes with JNK, PI3 kinase/Akt, or PKCδ inhibitors significantly decreased the IL-18-induced migratory activity. Taken together, the results suggest that IL-18-induced MMP-13 expression in astrocytes is regulated by JNK, PI3 kinase/Akt, and PKCδ signaling pathways. These findings also indicate that IL-18 is an important regulator leading to MMP-13 expression and cell migration in astrocytes.

  5. Astrocytic expression of HIV-1 Nef impairs spatial and recognition memory

    PubMed Central

    Chompre, Gladys; Cruz, Emmanuel; Maldonado, Lucianette; Rivera-Amill, Vanessa; Porter, James T.; Noel, Richard J.

    2012-01-01

    Despite the widespread use of antiretroviral therapy that effectively limits viral replication, memory impairment remains a dilemma for HIV infected people. In the CNS, HIV infection of astrocytes leads to the production of the HIV-1 Nef protein without viral replication. Post mortem studies have found Nef expression in hippocampal astrocytes of people with HIV associated dementia suggesting that astrocytic Nef may contribute to HIV associated cognitive impairment even when viral replication is suppressed. To test whether astrocytic expression of Nef is sufficient to induce cognitive deficits, we examined the effect of implanting primary rat astrocytes expressing Nef into the hippocampus on spatial and recognition memory. Rats implanted unilaterally with astrocytes expressing Nef showed impaired novel location and novel object recognition in comparison with controls implanted with astrocytes expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP). This impairment was correlated with an increase in chemokine ligand 2 (CCL2) expression and the infiltration of peripheral macrophages into the hippocampus at the site of injection. Furthermore, the Nef exposed rats exhibited a bilateral loss of CA3 neurons. These results suggest that Nef protein expressed by the implanted astrocytes activates the immune system leading to neuronal damage and spatial and recognition memory deficits. Therefore, the continued expression of Nef by astrocytes in the absence of viral replication has the potential to contribute to HIV associated cognitive impairment. PMID:22926191

  6. [Effect of lead-exposed astrocytes on neuronal synaptic formation].

    PubMed

    Cui, Yan; Li, Tingting; Yu, Haiyang; Liao, Yingjun; Jin, Yaping

    2014-09-01

    To investigate the effect of lead-exposed astrocyte conditioned medium (ACM) on the synaptic formation of neurons and to provide reference for the mechanism of lead neurotoxicity. Astrocytes were cultured in the medium containing 50, 100, 200, 400, and 800 µmol/L lead acetate for 72 h. Alamar Blue was used to assess the cell viability of astrocytes, and then ACM was collected. Primarily cultured neurons were divided into six groups: pure culture group, non-glutamic acid (Glu)-induced ACM treatment group, Glu-induced lead-free ACM treatment group, and Glu-induced 50, 100, and 200 µmol/L lead acetate-exposed ACM treatment groups. Neurons were collected after being cultured in ACM for 24, 48, or 72 h. The content of synaptophysin (SYP) in neurons was determined by Western blot. The SYP expression in neurons was measured by immunofluorescence after being cultured in ACMfor 72 h. In all lead-exposed groups, the cell viability of astrocytes declined with increasing concentration of lead (P < 0.05). The Western blot showed that compared with the pure culture group, the non-Glu-induced ACM treatment group and Glu-induced lead- free ACM treatment group had significantly increased content of SYP in neurons (P < 0.01); compared with the non-Glu-induced ACM treatment group, the Glu-induced ACM treatment groups had significantly reduced SYP expression in neurons (P < 0.05); compared with the Glu-induced lead-free ACM treatment group, all lead-exposed ACM treatment groups had the content of SYP in neurons significantly reduced with increasing concentration of lead after 72-h culture (P < 0.01), the 200 µmol/L lead-exposed ACM treatment group had significantly reduced content of SYP in neurons after 48-h culture (P < 0.01), and all lead-exposed ACM treatment groups showed no significant changes in the content of SYP in neurons after 24-h culture. Double-labeling immunofluorescence of SYP showed that all lead-exposed ACM treatment groups had a significant decrease in the number

  7. (13)C heteronuclear NMR studies of the interaction of cultured neurons and astrocytes and aluminum blockade of the preferential release of citrate from astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Meshitsuka, Shunsuke; Aremu, David A

    2008-02-01

    Citrate has been identified as a major tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle constituent preferentially released by astrocytes. We undertook the present study to examine further the nature of metabolic compartmentation in central nervous system tissues using (13)C-labeled glucose and to provide new information on the influence of aluminum on the metabolic interaction between neurons and astrocytes. Metabolites released into the culture medium from astrocytes and neuron-astrocyte coculture, as well as the perchloric acid extracts of the cells were analyzed using 2D (1)H and (13)C NMR spectroscopy. Astrocytes released citrate into the culture medium and the released citrate was consumed by neurons in coculture. Citrate release by astrocytes was blocked in the presence of aluminum, with progressive accumulation of citrate within the cells. We propose citrate supply is a more efficient energy source than lactate for neurons to produce ATP, especially in the hypoglycemic state on account of it being a direct component of the TCA cycle. Astrocytes may be the cellular compartment for aluminum accumulation as a citrate complex in the brain.

  8. The role of astrocytes in amyloid β-protein toxicity and clearance.

    PubMed

    Thal, Dietmar Rudolf

    2012-07-01

    The deposition of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ) in the brain is a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, Aβ deposits occur as Aβ plaques in the brain parenchyma and in the walls of cerebral and leptomeningeal blood vessels. Astrocytes are considered to be involved in the clearance of Aβ from the brain parenchyma into the perivascular space, across the blood-brain barrier, or by enzymatic degradation. As such it has been assumed that clearance of Aβ by astrocytes is beneficial. In a recent study published in Experimental Neurology Mulder et al. (2012; 233: 373-379) report changes in neprilysin and scavenger receptor class B member 1 gene expression in astrocytes exposed to fibrillar Aβ depending on the availability of amyloid-associated proteins, especially apolipoprotein E (apoE). Astrocytes from AD patients did not show this response in gene expression. Reactive astrocytes and Aβ containing astrocytes are common findings in the AD brain. A loss of excitatory amino acid transporter 2 expression in perivascular astrocytes of APOE ε4-positive AD cases and an alteration of neuronal apoE metabolism in the event of perivascular drainage of apoE-Aβ complexes has also been described. As such, reactive and compensatory changes in AD astrocytes compete with supporting functions of astrocytes finally leading to an impairment of metabolic support and transmitter recycling in the brain. In summary, exposure of astrocytes to increased amounts of Aβ over a long period in time very likely impairs the above mentioned supporting functions of astrocytes in AD patients because these cells have to clear large amounts of Aβ and, thereby, neglect their other functions. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. A comparative transcriptomic analysis of astrocytes differentiation from human neural progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Magistri, Marco; Khoury, Nathalie; Mazza, Emilia Maria Cristina; Velmeshev, Dmitry; Lee, Jae K; Bicciato, Silvio; Tsoulfas, Pantelis; Faghihi, Mohammad Ali

    2016-11-01

    Astrocytes are a morphologically and functionally heterogeneous population of cells that play critical roles in neurodevelopment and in the regulation of central nervous system homeostasis. Studies of human astrocytes have been hampered by the lack of specific molecular markers and by the difficulties associated with purifying and culturing astrocytes from adult human brains. Human neural progenitor cells (NPCs) with self-renewal and multipotent properties represent an appealing model system to gain insight into the developmental genetics and function of human astrocytes, but a comprehensive molecular characterization that confirms the validity of this cellular system is still missing. Here we used an unbiased transcriptomic analysis to characterize in vitro culture of human NPCs and to define the gene expression programs activated during the differentiation of these cells into astrocytes using FBS or the combination of CNTF and BMP4. Our results demonstrate that in vitro cultures of human NPCs isolated during the gliogenic phase of neurodevelopment mainly consist of radial glial cells (RGCs) and glia-restricted progenitor cells. In these cells the combination of CNTF and BMP4 activates the JAK/STAT and SMAD signaling cascades, leading to the inhibition of oligodendrocytes lineage commitment and activation of astrocytes differentiation. On the other hand, FBS-derived astrocytes have properties of reactive astrocytes. Our work suggests that in vitro culture of human NPCs represents a valuable cellular system to study human disorders characterized by impairment of astrocytes development and function. Our datasets represent an important resource for researchers studying human astrocytes development and might set the basis for the discovery of novel human-specific astrocyte markers. © 2016 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience published by Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Epoxyeicosatrienoic acids pretreatment improves amyloid β-induced mitochondrial dysfunction in cultured rat hippocampal astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sarkar, Pallabi; Zaja, Ivan; Bienengraeber, Martin; Rarick, Kevin R; Terashvili, Maia; Canfield, Scott; Falck, John R; Harder, David R

    2014-02-15

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) has long been implicated as a causative protein in Alzheimer's disease. Cellular Aβ accumulation is toxic and causes mitochondrial dysfunction, which precedes clinical symptoms of Alzheimer's disease pathology. In the present study, we explored the possible use of epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs), epoxide metabolites of arachidonic acid, as therapeutic target against Aβ-induced mitochondrial impairment using cultured neonatal hippocampal astrocytes. Inhibition of endogenous EET production by a selective epoxygenase inhibitor, MS-PPOH, caused a greater reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential in the presence of Aβ (1, 10 μM) exposure versus absence of Aβ. MS-PPOH preincubation also aggravated Aβ-induced mitochondrial fragmentation. Preincubation of the cells with either 14,15- or 11,12-EET prevented this mitochondrial depolarization and fragmentation. EET pretreatment also further improved the reduction observed in mitochondrial oxygen consumption in the presence of Aβ. Preincubation of the cells with EETs significantly improved cellular respiration under basal condition and in the presence of the protonophore, carbonyl cyanide 4-(trifluoromethoxy) phenylhydrazone (FCCP). The uncoupling of ATP synthase from the electron transfer chain that occurred in Aβ-treated cells was also prevented by preincubation with EETs. Lastly, cellular reactive oxygen species production, a hallmark of Aβ toxicity, also showed significant reduction in the presence of EETs. We have previously shown that Aβ reduces EET synthesis in rat brain homogenates and cultured hippocampal astrocytes and neurons (Sarkar P, Narayanan J, Harder DR. Differential effect of amyloid beta on the cytochrome P450 epoxygenase activity in rat brain. Neuroscience 194: 241-249, 2011). We conclude that reduction of endogenous EETs may be one of the mechanisms through which Aβ inflicts toxicity and thus supplementing the cells with exogenous EETs improves mitochondrial dynamics and

  11. Connexin-Dependent Neuroglial Networking as a New Therapeutic Target.

    PubMed

    Charvériat, Mathieu; Naus, Christian C; Leybaert, Luc; Sáez, Juan C; Giaume, Christian

    2017-01-01

    Astrocytes and neurons dynamically interact during physiological processes, and it is now widely accepted that they are both organized in plastic and tightly regulated networks. Astrocytes are connected through connexin-based gap junction channels, with brain region specificities, and those networks modulate neuronal activities, such as those involved in sleep-wake cycle, cognitive, or sensory functions. Additionally, astrocyte domains have been involved in neurogenesis and neuronal differentiation during development; they participate in the "tripartite synapse" with both pre-synaptic and post-synaptic neurons by tuning down or up neuronal activities through the control of neuronal synaptic strength. Connexin-based hemichannels are also involved in those regulations of neuronal activities, however, this feature will not be considered in the present review. Furthermore, neuronal processes, transmitting electrical signals to chemical synapses, stringently control astroglial connexin expression, and channel functions. Long-range energy trafficking toward neurons through connexin-coupled astrocytes and plasticity of those networks are hence largely dependent on neuronal activity. Such reciprocal interactions between neurons and astrocyte networks involve neurotransmitters, cytokines, endogenous lipids, and peptides released by neurons but also other brain cell types, including microglial and endothelial cells. Over the past 10 years, knowledge about neuroglial interactions has widened and now includes effects of CNS-targeting drugs such as antidepressants, antipsychotics, psychostimulants, or sedatives drugs as potential modulators of connexin function and thus astrocyte networking activity. In physiological situations, neuroglial networking is consequently resulting from a two-way interaction between astrocyte gap junction-mediated networks and those made by neurons. As both cell types are modulated by CNS drugs we postulate that neuroglial networking may emerge as

  12. Combating malignant astrocytes: Strategies mitigating tumor invasion.

    PubMed

    Umans, Robyn A; Sontheimer, Harald

    2018-01-01

    Malignant gliomas are glial-derived, primary brain tumors that carry poor prognosis. Existing therapeutics are largely ineffective and dramatically affect quality of life. The standard of care details a taxing combination of surgical resection, radiation of the resection cavity, and temozolomide (TMZ) chemotherapy, with treatment extending life by only an average of months (Maher et al., 2001; Stupp et al., 2005). Despite scientific and technological advancement, surgery remains the most important treatment modality. Therapeutic obstacles include xenobiotic protection conveyed by the blood-brain barrier (Zhang et al., 2015), invasiveness and therapeutic resistance of tumor cell populations (Bao et al., 2006), and distinctive attributes of secondary glioma occurrence (Ohgaki and Kleihues, 2013). While these brain malignancies can be classified by grade or grouped by molecular subclass, each tumor presents itself as its own complication. Based on all of these obstacles, new therapeutic approaches are urgently needed. These will likely emerge from numerous exciting studies of glioma biology that are ongoing and reviewed here. These show unexpected roles for ion channels, amino-acid transporters, and connexin gap junctions in supporting the invasive growth of gliomas. These studies have identified a number of proteins that may be targeted for therapy in the future. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

  13. Establishment of a luciferase assay-based screening system: Fumitremorgin C selectively inhibits cellular proliferation of immortalized astrocytes expressing an active form of AKT

    SciTech Connect

    Wang Lei; Sasai, Ken; Akagi, Tsuyoshi

    2008-08-29

    The AKT pathway is frequently activated in glioblastoma, and as such, inhibitors of this pathway could prove very useful as anti-glioblastoma therapies. Here we established immortalized astrocytes expressing Renilla luciferase as well as those expressing both an active form of AKT and firefly luciferase. Since both luciferase activities represent the numbers of corresponding cell lines, novel inhibitors of the AKT pathway can be identified by treating co-cultures containing the two types of luciferase-expressing cells with individual compounds. Indeed, such a screening system succeeded in identifying fumitremorgin C as an efficient inhibitor of the AKT pathway, which was further confirmed bymore » the ability of fumitremorgin C to selectively inhibit the growth of immortalized astrocytes expressing an active form of AKT. The present study proposes a broadly applicable approach for identifying therapeutic agents that target the pathways and/or molecules responsible for cancer development.« less

  14. Ca2+ Entry is Required for Mechanical Stimulation-induced ATP Release from Astrocyte

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jaekwang; Chun, Ye-Eun; Han, Kyung-Seok; Lee, Jungmoo; Woo, Dong Ho

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes and neurons are inseparable partners in the brain. Neurotransmitters released from neurons activate corresponding G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) expressed in astrocytes, resulting in release of gliotransmitters such as glutamate, D-serine, and ATP. These gliotransmitters in turn influence neuronal excitability and synaptic activities. Among these gliotransmitters, ATP regulates the level of network excitability and is critically involved in sleep homeostasis and astrocytic Ca2+ oscillations. ATP is known to be released from astrocytes by Ca2+-dependent manner. However, the precise source of Ca2+, whether it is Ca2+ entry from outside of cell or from the intracellular store, is still not clear yet. Here, we performed sniffer patch to detect ATP release from astrocyte by using various stimulation. We found that ATP was not released from astrocyte when Ca2+ was released from intracellular stores by activation of Gαq-coupled GPCR including PAR1, P2YR, and B2R. More importantly, mechanical stimulation (MS)-induced ATP release from astrocyte was eliminated when external Ca2+ was omitted. Our results suggest that Ca2+ entry, but not release from intracellular Ca2+ store, is critical for MS-induced ATP release from astrocyte. PMID:25792866

  15. Effect of dibutyryl cyclic AMP on the kinetics of myo-inositol transport in cultured astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Isaacks, R E; Bender, A S; Reuben, J S; Kim, C Y; Shi, Y F; Norenberg, M D

    1999-07-01

    Dibutyryl cyclic AMP (dBcAMP) is known to induce maturation and differentiation in astrocytes. As myo-inositol is an important osmoregulator in astrocytes, we examined the effects of maturation and biochemical differentiation on the kinetic properties of myo-inositol transport. Treatment of astrocytes with dBcAMP significantly decreased the Vmax of myo-inositol uptake, but the effect on Km was not significant. The myo-inositol content of astrocytes was significantly decreased in cells treated for 5 days with dBcAMP as compared with untreated controls. Maximum suppression of myo-inositol uptake occurred 7 days after exposure of astrocytes to dBcAMP; this was gradually reversible when dBcAMP was removed from the medium. After exposure to hypertonic medium for 6 h, mRNA expression of the myo-inositol co-transporter was diminished by approximately 36% in astrocytes treated with dBcAMP as compared with untreated cells. It appears that myo-inositol transporters in astrocytes treated with dBcAMP are either decreased in number or inactivated during maturation and differentiation, suggesting that the stage of differentiation and biochemical maturation of astrocytes is an important factor in osmoregulation.

  16. Astrocytes from adult Wistar rats aged in vitro show changes in glial functions.

    PubMed

    Souza, Débora Guerini; Bellaver, Bruna; Raupp, Gustavo Santos; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2015-11-01

    Astrocytes, the most versatile cells of the central nervous system, play an important role in the regulation of neurotransmitter homeostasis, energy metabolism, antioxidant defenses and the anti-inflammatory response. Recently, our group characterized cortical astrocyte cultures from adult Wistar rats. In line with that work, we studied glial function using an experimental in vitro model of aging astrocytes (30 days in vitro after reaching confluence) from newborn (NB), adult (AD) and aged (AG) Wistar rats. We evaluated metabolic parameters, such as the glucose uptake, glutamine synthetase (GS) activity, and glutathione (GSH) content, as well as the GFAP, GLUT-1 and xCT expression. AD and AG astrocytes take up less glucose than NB astrocytes and had decreased GLUT1 expression levels. Furthermore, AD and AG astrocytes exhibited decreased GS activity compared to NB cells. Simultaneously, AD and AG astrocytes showed an increase in GSH levels, along with an increase in xCT expression. NB, AD and AG astrocytes presented similar morphology; however, differences in GFAP levels were observed. Taken together, these results improve the knowledge of cerebral senescence and represent an innovative tool for brain studies of aging. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. A cellular star atlas: using astrocytes from human pluripotent stem cells for disease studies

    PubMed Central

    Krencik, Robert; Ullian, Erik M.

    2013-01-01

    What roles do astrocytes play in human disease?This question remains unanswered for nearly every human neurological disorder. Yet, because of their abundance and complexity astrocytes can impact neurological function in many ways. The differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) into neuronal and glial subtypes, including astrocytes, is becoming routine, thus their use as tools for modeling neurodevelopment and disease will provide one important approach to answer this question. When designing experiments, careful consideration must be given to choosing paradigms for differentiation, maturation, and functional analysis of these temporally asynchronous cellular populations in culture. In the case of astrocytes, they display heterogeneous characteristics depending upon species of origin, brain region, developmental stage, environmental factors, and disease states, all of which may render experimental results highly variable. In this review, challenges and future directions are discussed for using hPSC-derived astroglial progenitors and mature astrocytes for neurodevelopmental studies with a focus on exploring human astrocyte effects upon neuronal function. As new technologies emerge to measure the functions of astrocytes in vitro and in vivo, there is also a need for a standardized source of human astrocytes that are most relevant to the diseases of interest. PMID:23503583

  18. Differentiation of Inflammation-Responsive Astrocytes from Glial Progenitors Generated from Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Santos, Renata; Vadodaria, Krishna C; Jaeger, Baptiste N; Mei, Arianna; Lefcochilos-Fogelquist, Sabrina; Mendes, Ana P D; Erikson, Galina; Shokhirev, Maxim; Randolph-Moore, Lynne; Fredlender, Callie; Dave, Sonia; Oefner, Ruth; Fitzpatrick, Conor; Pena, Monique; Barron, Jerika J; Ku, Manching; Denli, Ahmet M; Kerman, Bilal E; Charnay, Patrick; Kelsoe, John R; Marchetto, Maria C; Gage, Fred H

    2017-06-06

    Astrocyte dysfunction and neuroinflammation are detrimental features in multiple pathologies of the CNS. Therefore, the development of methods that produce functional human astrocytes represents an advance in the study of neurological diseases. Here we report an efficient method for inflammation-responsive astrocyte generation from induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and embryonic stem cells. This protocol uses an intermediate glial progenitor stage and generates functional astrocytes that show levels of glutamate uptake and calcium activation comparable with those observed in human primary astrocytes. Stimulation of stem cell-derived astrocytes with interleukin-1β or tumor necrosis factor α elicits a strong and rapid pro-inflammatory response. RNA-sequencing transcriptome profiling confirmed that similar gene expression changes occurred in iPSC-derived and primary astrocytes upon stimulation with interleukin-1β. This protocol represents an important tool for modeling in-a-dish neurological diseases with an inflammatory component, allowing for the investigation of the role of diseased astrocytes in neuronal degeneration. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. In Vivo Evidence for a Lactate Gradient from Astrocytes to Neurons.

    PubMed

    Mächler, Philipp; Wyss, Matthias T; Elsayed, Maha; Stobart, Jillian; Gutierrez, Robin; von Faber-Castell, Alexandra; Kaelin, Vincens; Zuend, Marc; San Martín, Alejandro; Romero-Gómez, Ignacio; Baeza-Lehnert, Felipe; Lengacher, Sylvain; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick; Magistretti, Pierre J; Barros, L Felipe; Weber, Bruno

    2016-01-12

    Investigating lactate dynamics in brain tissue is challenging, partly because in vivo data at cellular resolution are not available. We monitored lactate in cortical astrocytes and neurons of mice using the genetically encoded FRET sensor Laconic in combination with two-photon microscopy. An intravenous lactate injection rapidly increased the Laconic signal in both astrocytes and neurons, demonstrating high lactate permeability across tissue. The signal increase was significantly smaller in astrocytes, pointing to higher basal lactate levels in these cells, confirmed by a one-point calibration protocol. Trans-acceleration of the monocarboxylate transporter with pyruvate was able to reduce intracellular lactate in astrocytes but not in neurons. Collectively, these data provide in vivo evidence for a lactate gradient from astrocytes to neurons. This gradient is a prerequisite for a carrier-mediated lactate flux from astrocytes to neurons and thus supports the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle model, in which astrocyte-derived lactate acts as an energy substrate for neurons. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Conditions and constraints for astrocyte calcium signaling in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway.

    PubMed

    Haustein, Martin D; Kracun, Sebastian; Lu, Xiao-Hong; Shih, Tiffany; Jackson-Weaver, Olan; Tong, Xiaoping; Xu, Ji; Yang, X William; O'Dell, Thomas J; Marvin, Jonathan S; Ellisman, Mark H; Bushong, Eric A; Looger, Loren L; Khakh, Baljit S

    2014-04-16

    The spatiotemporal activities of astrocyte Ca²⁺ signaling in mature neuronal circuits remain unclear. We used genetically encoded Ca²⁺ and glutamate indicators as well as pharmacogenetic and electrical control of neurotransmitter release to explore astrocyte activity in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway. Our data revealed numerous localized, spontaneous Ca²⁺ signals in astrocyte branches and territories, but these were not driven by neuronal activity or glutamate. Moreover, evoked astrocyte Ca²⁺ signaling changed linearly with the number of mossy fiber action potentials. Under these settings, astrocyte responses were global, suppressed by neurotransmitter clearance, and mediated by glutamate and GABA. Thus, astrocyte engagement in the fully developed mossy fiber pathway was slow and territorial, contrary to that frequently proposed for astrocytes within microcircuits. We show that astrocyte Ca²⁺ signaling functionally segregates large volumes of neuropil and that these transients are not suited for responding to, or regulating, single synapses in the mossy fiber pathway. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Phosphorylation status of pyruvate dehydrogenase distinguishes metabolic phenotypes of cultured rat brain astrocytes and neurons.

    PubMed

    Halim, Nader D; Mcfate, Thomas; Mohyeldin, Ahmed; Okagaki, Peter; Korotchkina, Lioubov G; Patel, Mulchand S; Jeoung, Nam Ho; Harris, Robert A; Schell, Michael J; Verma, Ajay

    2010-08-01

    Glucose metabolism in nervous tissue has been proposed to occur in a compartmentalized manner with astrocytes contributing largely to glycolysis and neurons being the primary site of glucose oxidation. However, mammalian astrocytes and neurons both contain mitochondria, and it remains unclear why in culture neurons oxidize glucose, lactate, and pyruvate to a much larger extent than astrocytes. The objective of this study was to determine whether pyruvate metabolism is differentially regulated in cultured neurons versus astrocytes. Expression of all components of the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex (PDC), the rate-limiting step for pyruvate entry into the Krebs cycle, was determined in cultured astrocytes and neurons. In addition, regulation of PDC enzymatic activity in the two cell types via protein phosphorylation was examined. We show that all components of the PDC are expressed in both cell types in culture, but that PDC activity is kept strongly inhibited in astrocytes through phosphorylation of the pyruvate dehydrogenase alpha subunit (PDH alpha). In contrast, neuronal PDC operates close to maximal levels with much lower levels of phosphorylated PDH alpha. Dephosphorylation of astrocytic PDH alpha restores PDC activity and lowers lactate production. Our findings suggest that the glucose metabolism of astrocytes and neurons may be far more flexible than previously believed. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  2. Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-06-01

    mouse brain Phospho-S6 staining revealed a striking dysmorphic appearance and increased cell size in the TSC1CKO cortex (Figs. 3). These enlarged...TSC1CKO mice. B A 11 6. Increased cell size of TSC1CKO astrocytes Increased numbers of astrocytes, many with enlarged and dysmorphic shapes, have

  3. Prostaglandin E(2) stimulates glutamate receptor-dependent astrocyte neuromodulation in cultured hippocampal cells.

    PubMed

    Sanzgiri, R P; Araque, A; Haydon, P G

    1999-11-05

    Recent Ca(2+) imaging studies in cell culture and in situ have shown that Ca(2+) elevations in astrocytes stimulate glutamate release and increase neuronal Ca(2+) levels, and that this astrocyte-neuron signaling can be stimulated by prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)). We investigated the electrophysiological consequences of the PGE(2)-mediated astrocyte-neuron signaling using whole-cell recordings on cultured rat hippocampal cells. Focal application of PGE(2) to astrocytes evoked a Ca(2+) elevation in the stimulated cell by mobilizing internal Ca(2+) stores, which further propagated as a Ca(2+) wave to neighboring astrocytes. Whole-cell recordings from neurons revealed that PGE(2) evoked a slow inward current in neurons adjacent to astrocytes. This neuronal response required the presence of an astrocyte Ca(2+) wave and was mediated through both N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and non-NMDA glutamate receptors. Taken together with previous studies, these data demonstrate that PGE(2)-evoked Ca(2+) elevations in astrocyte cause the release of glutamate which activates neuronal ionotropic receptors. Copyright 1999 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  4. Hippocampal astrocytes are necessary for antidepressant treatment of learned helplessness rats.

    PubMed

    Iwata, Masaaki; Shirayama, Yukihiko; Ishida, Hisahito; Hazama, Gen-i; Nakagome, Kazuyuki

    2011-08-01

    The astrocyte is a major component of the neural network and plays a role in brain function. Previous studies demonstrated changes in the number of astrocytes in depression. In this study, we examined alterations in the number of astrocytes in the learned helplessness (LH) rat, an animal model of depression. The numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes in the dentate gyrus (molecular layer, subgranular zone, and hilus), and CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus were significantly increased 2 and 8 days after attainment of LH. Subchronic treatment with imipramine showed a tendency (although not statistically significant) to decrease the LH-induced increment of activated astrocytes in the CA3 region and dentate gyrus. Furthermore, subchronic treatment of naïve rats with imipramine did not alter the numbers of activated and nonactivated astrocytes. However, the antidepressant-like effects of imipramine in the LH paradigm were blocked when fluorocitrate (a reversible inhibitor of astrocyte function) was injected into the dentate gyrus or CA3 region. Injection of fluorocitrate into naive rats failed to induce behavioral deficits in the conditioned avoidance test. These results indicate that astrocytes are responsive to the antidepressant-like effect of imipramine in the dentate gyrus and CA3 region of the hippocampus. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  5. Reactive Transformation and Increased BDNF Signaling by Hippocampal Astrocytes in Response to MK-801

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yueming; Li, Guanjun; Wang, Lihua; Li, Huafang

    2015-01-01

    MK-801, also known as dizocilpine, is a noncompetitive N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptor antagonist that induces schizophrenia-like symptoms. While astrocytes have been implicated in the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, astrocytic responses to MK-801 and their significance to schizotypic symptoms are unclear. Changes in the expression levels of glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP), a marker of astrocyte activation in response to a variety of pathogenic stimuli, were examined in the hippocampus of rats treated with the repeated MK-801 injection (0.5 mg/10ml/kg body weight for 6 days) and in primary cultured hippocampal astrocytes incubated with MK-801 (5 or 20 μM for 24 h). Moreover, the expression levels of BDNF and its receptors TrkB and p75 were examined in MK-801-treated astrocyte cultures. MK-801 treatment enhanced GFAP expression in the rat hippocampus and also increased the levels of GFAP protein and mRNA in hippocampal astrocytes in vitro. Treatment of cultured hippocampal astrocytes with MK-801 enhanced protein and mRNA levels of BDNF, TrkB, and p75. Collectively, our results suggest that hippocampal astrocytes may contribute to the pathophysiology of schizophrenia symptoms associated with NMDA receptor hypofunction by reactive transformation and altered BDNF signaling. PMID:26700309

  6. Content and traffic of taurine in hippocampal reactive astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Junyent, Fèlix; De Lemos, Luisa; Utrera, Juana; Paco, Sonia; Aguado, Fernando; Camins, Antoni; Pallàs, Mercè; Romero, Rafael; Auladell, Carme

    2011-02-01

    Taurine is one of the most abundant free amino acids in the mammalian central nervous system, where it is crucial to proper development. Moreover, taurine acts as a neuroprotectant in various diseases; in epilepsy, for example, it has the capacity to reduce or abolish seizures. In the present study, taurine levels has been determine in mice treated with Kainic Acid (KA) and results showed an increase of this amino acid in hippocampus but not in whole brain after 3 and 7 days of KA treatment. This increase occurs when gliosis was observed. Moreover, taurine transporter (TAUT) was found in astrocytes 3 and 7 days after KA treatment, together with an increase in cysteine sulfinic acid decarboxylase (csd) mRNA, that codifies for the rate-limiting enzyme of taurine synthesis, in the hippocampus at the same times after KA treatment. Glial cultures enriched in astrocytes were developed to demonstrate that these cells are responsible for changes in taurine levels after an injury to the brain. The cultures were treated with proinflammatory cytokines to reproduce gliosis. In this experimental model, an increase in the immunoreactivity of GFAP was observed, together with an increase in CSD and taurine levels. Moreover, an alteration in the taurine uptake-release kinetics was detected in glial cells treated with cytokine. All data obtained indicate that astrocytes could play a key role in taurine level changes induced by neuronal damage. More studies are, therefore, needed to clarify the role taurine has in relation to neuronal death and repair. Copyright © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  7. Imaging Intracellular Ca2+ Signals in Striatal Astrocytes from Adult Mice Using Genetically-encoded Calcium Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Ruotian; Haustein, Martin D.; Sofroniew, Michael V.; Khakh, Baljit S.

    2014-01-01

    Astrocytes display spontaneous intracellular Ca2+ concentration fluctuations ([Ca2+]i) and in several settings respond to neuronal excitation with enhanced [Ca2+]i signals. It has been proposed that astrocytes in turn regulate neurons and blood vessels through calcium-dependent mechanisms, such as the release of signaling molecules. However, [Ca2+]i imaging in entire astrocytes has only recently become feasible with genetically encoded calcium indicators (GECIs) such as the GCaMP series. The use of GECIs in astrocytes now provides opportunities to study astrocyte [Ca2+]i signals in detail within model microcircuits such as the striatum, which is the largest nucleus of the basal ganglia. In the present report, detailed surgical methods to express GECIs in astrocytes in vivo, and confocal imaging approaches to record [Ca2+]i signals in striatal astrocytes in situ, are described. We highlight precautions, necessary controls and tests to determine if GECI expression is selective for astrocytes and to evaluate signs of overt astrocyte reactivity. We also describe brain slice and imaging conditions in detail that permit reliable [Ca2+]i imaging in striatal astrocytes in situ. The use of these approaches revealed the entire territories of single striatal astrocytes and spontaneous [Ca2+]i signals within their somata, branches and branchlets. The further use and expansion of these approaches in the striatum will allow for the detailed study of astrocyte [Ca2+]i signals in the striatal microcircuitry. PMID:25490346

  8. Imaging intracellular Ca²⁺ signals in striatal astrocytes from adult mice using genetically-encoded calcium indicators.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ruotian; Haustein, Martin D; Sofroniew, Michael V; Khakh, Baljit S

    2014-11-19

    Astrocytes display spontaneous intracellular Ca(2+) concentration fluctuations ([Ca(2+)]i) and in several settings respond to neuronal excitation with enhanced [Ca(2+)]i signals. It has been proposed that astrocytes in turn regulate neurons and blood vessels through calcium-dependent mechanisms, such as the release of signaling molecules. However, [Ca(2+)]i imaging in entire astrocytes has only recently become feasible with genetically encoded calcium indicators (GECIs) such as the GCaMP series. The use of GECIs in astrocytes now provides opportunities to study astrocyte [Ca(2+)]i signals in detail within model microcircuits such as the striatum, which is the largest nucleus of the basal ganglia. In the present report, detailed surgical methods to express GECIs in astrocytes in vivo, and confocal imaging approaches to record [Ca(2+)]i signals in striatal astrocytes in situ, are described. We highlight precautions, necessary controls and tests to determine if GECI expression is selective for astrocytes and to evaluate signs of overt astrocyte reactivity. We also describe brain slice and imaging conditions in detail that permit reliable [Ca(2+)]i imaging in striatal astrocytes in situ. The use of these approaches revealed the entire territories of single striatal astrocytes and spontaneous [Ca(2+)]i signals within their somata, branches and branchlets. The further use and expansion of these approaches in the striatum will allow for the detailed study of astrocyte [Ca(2+)]i signals in the striatal microcircuitry.

  9. Indoxyl Sulfate Affects Glial Function Increasing Oxidative Stress and Neuroinflammation in Chronic Kidney Disease: Interaction between Astrocytes and Microglia.

    PubMed

    Adesso, Simona; Magnus, Tim; Cuzzocrea, Salvatore; Campolo, Michela; Rissiek, Björn; Paciello, Orlando; Autore, Giuseppina; Pinto, Aldo; Marzocco, Stefania

    2017-01-01

    Indoxyl sulfate (IS) is a protein-bound uremic toxin resulting from the metabolism of dietary tryptophan which accumulates in patients with impaired renal function, such as chronic kidney disease (CKD). IS is a well-known nephrovascular toxin but little is known about its effects on central nervous system (CNS) cells. Considering the growing interest in the field of CNS comorbidities in CKD, we studied the effect of IS on CNS cells. IS (15-60 μM) treatment in C6 astrocyte cells increased reactive oxygen species release and decreased nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2) activation, and heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and NAD(P)H dehydrogenase quinone 1 expression. Moreover, IS increased Aryl hydrocarbon Receptor (AhR) and Nuclear Factor-kB (NF-kB) activation in these cells. Similiar observations were made in primary mouse astrocytes and mixed glial cells. Inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression, tumor necrosis factor-α and interleukin-6 release and nitrotyrosine formation were increased by IS (15-60 μM) in primary mouse astrocytes and mixed glial cells. IS increased AhR and NF-kB nuclear translocation and reduced Nrf2 translocation and HO-1 expression in primary glial cells. In addition, IS induced cell death in neurons in a dose dependent fashion. Injection of IS (800 mg/kg, i.p.) into mice induced histological changes and increased COX-2 expression and nitrotyrosine formation in thebrain tissue. Taken together, our results show a significant contribution of IS in generating a neurotoxic enviroment and it could also have a potential role in neurodegeneration. IS could be considered also a potential therapeutical target for CKD-associated neurodegenerative complications.

  10. Astrocytes Regulate GLP-1 Receptor-Mediated Effects on Energy Balance

    PubMed Central

    Reiner, David J.; Mietlicki-Baase, Elizabeth G.; McGrath, Lauren E.; Zimmer, Derek J.; Bence, Kendra K.; Sousa, Gregory L.; Konanur, Vaibhav R.; Krawczyk, Joanna; Burk, David H.; Kanoski, Scott E.; Hermann, Gerlinda E.; Rogers, Richard C.

    2016-01-01

    Astrocytes are well established modulators of extracellular glutamate, but their direct influence on energy balance-relevant behaviors is largely understudied. As the anorectic effects of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonists are partly mediated by central modulation of glutamatergic signaling, we tested the hypothesis that astrocytic GLP-1R signaling regulates energy balance in rats. Central or peripheral administration of a fluorophore-labeled GLP-1R agonist, exendin-4, localizes within astrocytes and neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS), a hindbrain nucleus critical for energy balance control. This effect is mediated by GLP-1R, as the uptake of systemically administered fluorophore-tagged exendin-4 was blocked by central pretreatment with the competitive GLP-1R antagonist exendin-(9–39). Ex vivo analyses show prolonged exendin-4-induced activation (live cell calcium signaling) of NTS astrocytes and neurons; these effects are also attenuated by exendin-(9–39), indicating mediation by the GLP-1R. In vitro analyses show that the application of GLP-1R agonists increases cAMP levels in astrocytes. Immunohistochemical analyses reveal that endogenous GLP-1 axons form close synaptic apposition with NTS astrocytes. Finally, pharmacological inhibition of NTS astrocytes attenuates the anorectic and body weight-suppressive effects of intra-NTS GLP-1R activation. Collectively, data demonstrate a role for NTS astrocytic GLP-1R signaling in energy balance control. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonists reduce food intake and are approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of obesity, but the cellular mechanisms underlying the anorectic effects of GLP-1 require further investigation. Astrocytes represent a major cellular population in the CNS that regulates neurotransmission, yet the role of astrocytes in mediating energy balance is largely unstudied. The current data provide novel evidence that

  11. Thyroid hormones upregulate apolipoprotein E gene expression in astrocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Roman, Corina; Fuior, Elena V.; Trusca, Violeta G.

    Apolipoprotein E (apoE), a protein mainly involved in lipid metabolism, is associated with several neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease. Despite numerous attempts to elucidate apoE gene regulation in the brain, the exact mechanism is still uncovered. The mechanism of apoE gene regulation in the brain involves the proximal promoter and multienhancers ME.1 and ME.2, which evolved by gene duplication. Herein we questioned whether thyroid hormones and their nuclear receptors have a role in apoE gene regulation in astrocytes. Our data showed that thyroid hormones increase apoE gene expression in HTB14 astrocytes in a dose-dependent manner. This effect can be intermediatedmore » by the thyroid receptor β (TRβ) which is expressed in these cells. In the presence of triiodothyronine (T3) and 9-cis retinoic acid, in astrocytes transfected to overexpress TRβ and retinoid X receptor α (RXRα), apoE promoter was indirectly activated through the interaction with ME.2. To determine the location of TRβ/RXRα binding site on ME.2, we performed DNA pull down assays and found that TRβ/RXRα complex bound to the region 341–488 of ME.2. This result was confirmed by transient transfection experiments in which a series of 5′- and 3′-deletion mutants of ME.2 were used. These data support the existence of a biologically active TRβ binding site starting at 409 in ME.2. In conclusion, our data revealed that ligand-activated TRβ/RXRα heterodimers bind with high efficiency on tissue-specific distal regulatory element ME.2 and thus modulate apoE gene expression in the brain. - Highlights: • T3 induce a dose-dependent increase of apoE expression in astrocytes. • Thyroid hormones activate apoE promoter in a cell specific manner. • Ligand activated TRβ/RXRα bind on the distal regulatory element ME.2 to modulate apoE. • The binding site of TRβ/RXRα heterodimer is located at 409 bp on ME.2.« less

  12. Raindrops of synaptic noise on dual excitability landscape: an approach to astrocyte network modelling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verisokin, Andrey Yu.; Postnov, Dmitry E.; Verveyko, Darya V.; Brazhe, Alexey R.

    2018-04-01

    The most abundant non-neuronal cells in the brain, astrocytes, populate all parts of the central nervous system (CNS). Astrocytic calcium activity ranging from subcellular sparkles to intercellular waves is believed to be the key to a plethora of regulatory pathways in the central nervous system from synaptic plasticity to blood flow regulation. Modeling of the calcium wave initiation and transmission and their spatiotemporal dynamics is therefore an important step stone in understanding the crucial cogs of cognition. Astrocytes are active sensors of ongoing neuronal and synaptic activity, and neurotransmitters diffusing from the synaptic cleft make a strong impact on the astrocytic activity. Here we propose a model describing the patterns of calcium wave formation at a single cell level and discuss the interplay between astrocyte shape the calcium waves dynamics driven by local stochastic surges of glutamate simulating synaptic activity.

  13. Cortical Circuit Activity Evokes Rapid Astrocyte Calcium Signals on a Similar Timescale to Neurons.

    PubMed

    Stobart, Jillian L; Ferrari, Kim David; Barrett, Matthew J P; Glück, Chaim; Stobart, Michael J; Zuend, Marc; Weber, Bruno

    2018-05-16

    Sensory stimulation evokes intracellular calcium signals in astrocytes; however, the timing of these signals is disputed. Here, we used novel combinations of genetically encoded calcium indicators for concurrent two-photon imaging of cortical astrocytes and neurons in awake mice during whisker deflection. We identified calcium responses in both astrocyte processes and endfeet that rapidly followed neuronal events (∼120 ms after). These fast astrocyte responses were largely independent of IP 3 R2-mediated signaling and known neuromodulator activity (acetylcholine, serotonin, and norepinephrine), suggesting that they are evoked by local synaptic activity. The existence of such rapid signals implies that astrocytes are fast enough to play a role in synaptic modulation and neurovascular coupling. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Neuroprotective Role of Gap Junctions in a Neuron Astrocyte Network Model.

    PubMed

    Huguet, Gemma; Joglekar, Anoushka; Messi, Leopold Matamba; Buckalew, Richard; Wong, Sarah; Terman, David

    2016-07-26

    A detailed biophysical model for a neuron/astrocyte network is developed to explore mechanisms responsible for the initiation and propagation of cortical spreading depolarizations and the role of astrocytes in maintaining ion homeostasis, thereby preventing these pathological waves. Simulations of the model illustrate how properties of spreading depolarizations, such as wave speed and duration of depolarization, depend on several factors, including the neuron and astrocyte Na(+)-K(+) ATPase pump strengths. In particular, we consider the neuroprotective role of astrocyte gap junction coupling. The model demonstrates that a syncytium of electrically coupled astrocytes can maintain a physiological membrane potential in the presence of an elevated extracellular K(+) concentration and efficiently distribute the excess K(+) across the syncytium. This provides an effective neuroprotective mechanism for delaying or preventing the initiation of spreading depolarizations. Copyright © 2016 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Astrocytic Ca2+ responses in the spinal dorsal horn by noxious stimuli to the skin.

    PubMed

    Yoshihara, Kohei; Matsuda, Tsuyoshi; Kohro, Yuta; Tozaki-Saitoh, Hidetoshi; Inoue, Kazuhide; Tsuda, Makoto

    2018-05-03

    The role of astrocytes in the spinal dorsal horn (SDH) for sensory information processing under normal conditions is poorly understood. In this study, we investigated whether SDH astrocytes respond to noxious and innocuous stimuli to the skin of normal mice using in vivo two-photon Ca 2+ imaging under anesthesia. We found that noxious stimulation evoked by intraplantar formalin injection provoked an elevation in intracellular Ca 2+ levels in SDH astrocytes. By contrast, neither instantaneous noxious pinching nor innocuous stimuli (cooling or brushing) to the hindpaw elicited astrocytic Ca 2+ responses. Thus, SDH astrocytes could respond preferentially to a strong and/or sustained noxious stimulus. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Loss of astrocyte cholesterol synthesis disrupts neuronal function and alters whole-body metabolism.

    PubMed

    Ferris, Heather A; Perry, Rachel J; Moreira, Gabriela V; Shulman, Gerald I; Horton, Jay D; Kahn, C Ronald

    2017-01-31

    Cholesterol is important for normal brain function. The brain synthesizes its own cholesterol, presumably in astrocytes. We have previously shown that diabetes results in decreased brain cholesterol synthesis by a reduction in sterol regulatory element-binding protein 2 (SREBP2)-regulated transcription. Here we show that coculture of control astrocytes with neurons enhances neurite outgrowth, and this is reduced with SREBP2 knockdown astrocytes. In vivo, mice with knockout of SREBP2 in astrocytes have impaired brain development and behavioral and motor defects. These mice also have altered energy balance, altered body composition, and a shift in metabolism toward carbohydrate oxidation driven by increased glucose oxidation by the brain. Thus, SREBP2-mediated cholesterol synthesis in astrocytes plays an important role in brain and neuronal development and function, and altered brain cholesterol synthesis may contribute to the interaction between metabolic diseases, such as diabetes and altered brain function.

  17. GABA from reactive astrocytes impairs memory in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Jo, Seonmi; Yarishkin, Oleg; Hwang, Yu Jin; Chun, Ye Eun; Park, Mijeong; Woo, Dong Ho; Bae, Jin Young; Kim, Taekeun; Lee, Jaekwang; Chun, Heejung; Park, Hyun Jung; Lee, Da Yong; Hong, Jinpyo; Kim, Hye Yun; Oh, Soo-Jin; Park, Seung Ju; Lee, Hyo; Yoon, Bo-Eun; Kim, YoungSoo; Jeong, Yong; Shim, Insop; Bae, Yong Chul; Cho, Jeiwon; Kowall, Neil W; Ryu, Hoon; Hwang, Eunmi; Kim, Daesoo; Lee, C Justin

    2014-08-01

    In Alzheimer's disease (AD), memory impairment is the most prominent feature that afflicts patients and their families. Although reactive astrocytes have been observed around amyloid plaques since the disease was first described, their role in memory impairment has been poorly understood. Here, we show that reactive astrocytes aberrantly and abundantly produce the inhibitory gliotransmitter GABA by monoamine oxidase-B (Maob) and abnormally release GABA through the bestrophin 1 channel. In the dentate gyrus of mouse models of AD, the released GABA reduces spike probability of granule cells by acting on presynaptic GABA receptors. Suppressing GABA production or release from reactive astrocytes fully restores the impaired spike probability, synaptic plasticity, and learning and memory in the mice. In the postmortem brain of individuals with AD, astrocytic GABA and MAOB are significantly upregulated. We propose that selective inhibition of astrocytic GABA synthesis or release may serve as an effective therapeutic strategy for treating memory impairment in AD.

  18. Identification and staining of distinct populations of secretory organelles in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Bezzi, Paola; Volterra, Andrea

    2014-05-01

    Increasing evidence indicates that astrocytes, the most abundant glial cell type in the brain, respond to an elevation in cytoplasmic calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) by releasing chemical transmitters (also called gliotransmitters) via regulated exocytosis of heterogeneous classes of organelles. By this process, astrocytes exert modulatory influences on neighboring cells and are thought to participate in the control of synaptic circuits and cerebral blood flow. Studying the properties of exocytosis in astrocytes is a challenge, because the cell biological basis of this process is incompletely defined. Astrocytic exocytosis involves multiple populations of secretory vesicles, including synaptic-like microvesicles (SLMVs), dense-core granules (DCGs), and lysosomes. Here we summarize the available information for identifying individual populations of secretory organelles in astrocytes, including DCGs, SLMVs, and lysosomes, and present experimental procedures for specifically staining such populations.

  19. Loss of astrocyte cholesterol synthesis disrupts neuronal function and alters whole-body metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Ferris, Heather A.; Perry, Rachel J.; Moreira, Gabriela V.; Shulman, Gerald I.; Horton, Jay D.; Kahn, C. Ronald

    2017-01-01

    Cholesterol is important for normal brain function. The brain synthesizes its own cholesterol, presumably in astrocytes. We have previously shown that diabetes results in decreased brain cholesterol synthesis by a reduction in sterol regulatory element-binding protein 2 (SREBP2)-regulated transcription. Here we show that coculture of control astrocytes with neurons enhances neurite outgrowth, and this is reduced with SREBP2 knockdown astrocytes. In vivo, mice with knockout of SREBP2 in astrocytes have impaired brain development and behavioral and motor defects. These mice also have altered energy balance, altered body composition, and a shift in metabolism toward carbohydrate oxidation driven by increased glucose oxidation by the brain. Thus, SREBP2-mediated cholesterol synthesis in astrocytes plays an important role in brain and neuronal development and function, and altered brain cholesterol synthesis may contribute to the interaction between metabolic diseases, such as diabetes and altered brain function. PMID:28096339

  20. The microRNA and messengerRNA profile of the RNA-induced silencing complex in human primary astrocyte and astrocytoma cells.

    PubMed

    Moser, Joanna J; Fritzler, Marvin J

    2010-10-18

    GW/P bodies are cytoplasmic ribonucleoprotein-rich foci involved in microRNA (miRNA)-mediated messenger RNA (mRNA) silencing and degradation. The mRNA regulatory functions within GW/P bodies are mediated by GW182 and its binding partner hAgo2 that bind miRNA in the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC). To date there are no published reports of the profile of miRNA and mRNA targeted to the RISC or a comparison of the RISC-specific miRNA/mRNA profile differences in malignant and non-malignant cells. RISC mRNA and miRNA components were profiled by microarray analysis of malignant human U-87 astrocytoma cells and its non-malignant counterpart, primary human astrocytes. Total cell RNA as well as RNA from immunoprecipitated RISC was analyzed. The novel findings were fourfold: (1) miRNAs were highly enriched in astrocyte RISC compared to U-87 astrocytoma RISC, (2) astrocytoma and primary astrocyte cells each contained unique RISC miRNA profiles as compared to their respective cellular miRNA profiles, (3) miR-195, 10b, 29b, 19b, 34a and 455-3p levels were increased and the miR-181b level was decreased in U-87 astrocytoma RISC as compared to astrocyte RISC, and (4) the RISC contained decreased levels of mRNAs in primary astrocyte and U-87 astrocytoma cells. The observation that miR-34a and miR-195 levels were increased in the RISC of U-87 astrocytoma cells suggests an oncogenic role for these miRNAs. Differential regulation of mRNAs by specific miRNAs is evidenced by the observation that three miR34a-targeted mRNAs and two miR-195-targeted mRNAs were downregulated while one miR-195-targeted mRNA was upregulated. Biological pathway analysis of RISC mRNA components suggests that the RISC plays a pivotal role in malignancy and other conditions. This study points to the importance of the RISC and ultimately GW/P body composition and function in miRNA and mRNA deregulation in astrocytoma cells and possibly in other malignancies.

  1. The MicroRNA and MessengerRNA Profile of the RNA-Induced Silencing Complex in Human Primary Astrocyte and Astrocytoma Cells

    PubMed Central

    Moser, Joanna J.; Fritzler, Marvin J.

    2010-01-01

    Background GW/P bodies are cytoplasmic ribonucleoprotein-rich foci involved in microRNA (miRNA)-mediated messenger RNA (mRNA) silencing and degradation. The mRNA regulatory functions within GW/P bodies are mediated by GW182 and its binding partner hAgo2 that bind miRNA in the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC). To date there are no published reports of the profile of miRNA and mRNA targeted to the RISC or a comparison of the RISC-specific miRNA/mRNA profile differences in malignant and non-malignant cells. Methodology/Principal Findings RISC mRNA and miRNA components were profiled by microarray analysis of malignant human U-87 astrocytoma cells and its non-malignant counterpart, primary human astrocytes. Total cell RNA as well as RNA from immunoprecipitated RISC was analyzed. The novel findings were fourfold: (1) miRNAs were highly enriched in astrocyte RISC compared to U-87 astrocytoma RISC, (2) astrocytoma and primary astrocyte cells each contained unique RISC miRNA profiles as compared to their respective cellular miRNA profiles, (3) miR-195, 10b, 29b, 19b, 34a and 455-3p levels were increased and the miR-181b level was decreased in U-87 astrocytoma RISC as compared to astrocyte RISC, and (4) the RISC contained decreased levels of mRNAs in primary astrocyte and U-87 astrocytoma cells. Conclusions/Significance The observation that miR-34a and miR-195 levels were increased in the RISC of U-87 astrocytoma cells suggests an oncogenic role for these miRNAs. Differential regulation of mRNAs by specific miRNAs is evidenced by the observation that three miR34a-targeted mRNAs and two miR-195-targeted mRNAs were downregulated while one miR-195-targeted mRNA was upregulated. Biological pathway analysis of RISC mRNA components suggests that the RISC plays a pivotal role in malignancy and other conditions. This study points to the importance of the RISC and ultimately GW/P body composition and function in miRNA and mRNA deregulation in astrocytoma cells and possibly in

  2. Human astrocytic grid networks patterned in parylene-C inlayed SiO2 trenches.

    PubMed

    Jordan, M D; Raos, B J; Bunting, A S; Murray, A F; Graham, E S; Unsworth, C P

    2016-10-01

    Recent literature suggests that glia, and in particular astrocytes, should be studied as organised networks which communicate through gap junctions. Astrocytes, however, adhere to most surfaces and are highly mobile cells. In order to study, such organised networks effectively in vitro it is necessary to influence them to pattern to certain substrates whilst being repelled from others and to immobilise the astrocytes sufficiently such that they do not continue to migrate further whilst under study. In this article, we demonstrate for the first time how it is possible to facilitate the study of organised patterned human astrocytic networks using hNT astrocytes in a SiO2 trench grid network that is inlayed with the biocompatible material, parylene-C. We demonstrate how the immobilisation of astrocytes lies in the depth of the SiO2 trench, determining an optimum trench depth and that the optimum patterning of astrocytes is a consequence of the parylene-C inlay and the grid node spacing. We demonstrate high fidelity of the astrocytic networks and demonstrate that functionality of the hNT astrocytes through ATP evoked calcium signalling is also dependent on the grid node spacing. Finally, we demonstrate that the location of the nuclei on the grid nodes is also a function of the grid node spacing. The significance of this work, is to describe a suitable platform to facilitate the study of hNT astrocytes from the single cell level to the network level to improve knowledge and understanding of how communication links to spatial organisation at these higher order scales and trigger in vitro research further in this area with clinical applications in the area of epilepsy, stroke and focal cerebral ischemia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Astrocytes Can Adopt Endothelial Cell Fates in a p53-Dependent Manner.

    PubMed

    Brumm, Andrew J; Nunez, Stefanie; Doroudchi, Mehdi M; Kawaguchi, Riki; Duan, Jinhzu; Pellegrini, Matteo; Lam, Larry; Carmichael, S Thomas; Deb, Arjun; Hinman, Jason D

    2017-08-01

    Astrocytes respond to a variety of CNS injuries by cellular enlargement, process outgrowth, and upregulation of extracellular matrix proteins that function to prevent expansion of the injured region. This astrocytic response, though critical to the acute injury response, results in the formation of a glial scar that inhibits neural repair. Scar-forming cells (fibroblasts) in the heart can undergo mesenchymal-endothelial transition into endothelial cell fates following cardiac injury in a process dependent on p53 that can be modulated to augment cardiac repair. Here, we sought to determine whether astrocytes, as the primary scar-forming cell of the CNS, are able to undergo a similar cellular phenotypic transition and adopt endothelial cell fates. Serum deprivation of differentiated astrocytes resulted in a change in cellular morphology and upregulation of endothelial cell marker genes. In a tube formation assay, serum-deprived astrocytes showed a substantial increase in vessel-like morphology that was comparable to human umbilical vein endothelial cells and dependent on p53. RNA sequencing of serum-deprived astrocytes demonstrated an expression profile that mimicked an endothelial rather than astrocyte transcriptome and identified p53 and angiogenic pathways as specifically upregulated. Inhibition of p53 with genetic or pharmacologic strategies inhibited astrocyte-endothelial transition. Astrocyte-endothelial cell transition could also be modulated by miR-194, a microRNA downstream of p53 that affects expression of genes regulating angiogenesis. Together, these studies demonstrate that differentiated astrocytes retain a stimulus-dependent mechanism for cellular transition into an endothelial phenotype that may modulate formation of the glial scar and promote injury-induced angiogenesis.

  4. CPEB1 modulates lipopolysaccharide-mediated iNOS induction in rat primary astrocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Ki Chan; Hyun Joo, So; Shin, Chan Young, E-mail: chanyshin@kku.ac.kr

    2011-06-17

    Highlights: {yields} Expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 is increased by LPS stimulation in rat primary astrocytes. {yields} JNK regulates expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 in reactive astrocytes. {yields} Down-regulation of CPEB1 using siRNA inhibits oxidative stress and iNOS induction by LPS stimulation. {yields} CPEB1 may play an important role in regulating inflammatory responses in reactive astrocytes induced by LPS. -- Abstract: Upon CNS damage, astrocytes undergo a series of biological changes including increased proliferation, production of inflammatory mediators and morphological changes, in a response collectively called reactive gliosis. This process is an essential part of the brains response to injury,more » yet much is unknown about the molecular mechanism(s) that induce these changes. In this study, we investigated the role of cytoplasmic polyadenylation element binding protein 1 (CPEB1) in the regulation of inflammatory responses in a model of reactive gliosis, lipopolysaccharide-stimulated astrocytes. CPEB1 is an mRNA-binding protein recently shown to be expressed in astrocytes that may play a role in astrocytes migration. After LPS stimulation, the expression and phosphorylation of CPEB1 was increased in rat primary astrocytes in a JNK-dependent process. siRNA-induced knockdown of CPEB1 expression inhibited the LPS-induced up-regulation of iNOS as well as NO and ROS production, a hallmark of immunological activation of astrocytes. The results from the study suggest that CPEB1 is actively involved in the regulation of inflammatory responses in astrocytes, which might provide new insights into the regulatory mechanism after brain injury.« less

  5. AQP5 is differentially regulated in astrocytes during metabolic and traumatic injuries.

    PubMed

    Chai, Rui Chao; Jiang, Jiao Hua; Wong, Ann Yuen Kwan; Jiang, Feng; Gao, Kai; Vatcher, Greg; Hoi Yu, Albert Cheung

    2013-10-01

    Water movement plays vital roles in both physiological and pathological conditions in the brain. Astrocytes are responsible for regulating this water movement and are the major contributors to brain edema in pathological conditions. Aquaporins (AQPs) in astrocytes play critical roles in the regulation of water movement in the brain. AQP1, 3, 4, 5, 8, and 9 have been reported in the brain. Compared with AQP1, 4, and 9, AQP3, 5, and 8 are less studied. Among the lesser known AQPs, AQP5, which has multiple functions identified outside the central nervous system, is also indicated to be involved in hypoxia injury in astrocytes. In our study, AQP5 expression could be detected both in primary cultures of astrocytes and neurons, and AQP5 expression in astrocytes was confirmed in 1- to 4-week old primary cultures of astrocytes. AQP5 was localized on the cytoplasmic membrane and in the cytoplasm of astrocytes. AQP5 expression was downregulated during ischemia treatment and upregulated after scratch-wound injury, which was also confirmed in a middle cerebral artery occlusion model and a stab-wound injury model in vivo. The AQP5 increased after scratch injury was polarized to the migrating processes and cytoplasmic membrane of astrocytes in the leading edge of the scratch-wound, and AQP5 over-expression facilitated astrocyte process elongation after scratch injury. Taken together, these results indicate that AQP5 might be an important water channel in astrocytes that is differentially expressed during various brain injuries. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Hypoxia diminishes the protective function of white-matter astrocytes in the developing brain.

    PubMed

    Agematsu, Kota; Korotcova, Ludmila; Morton, Paul D; Gallo, Vittorio; Jonas, Richard A; Ishibashi, Nobuyuki

    2016-01-01

    White-matter injury after surgery is common in neonates with cerebral immaturity secondary to in utero hypoxia. Astrocytes play a central role in brain protection; however, the reaction of astrocytes to hypothermic circulatory arrest (HCA) remains unknown. We investigated the role of astrocytes in white-matter injury after HCA and determined the effects of preoperative hypoxia on this role, using a novel mouse model. Mice were exposed to hypoxia from days 3 to 11, which is equivalent to the third trimester in humans (prehypoxia, n = 49). Brain slices were transferred to a chamber perfused by cerebrospinal fluid. Oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) was performed to simulate ischemia-reperfusion/reoxygenation resulting from circulatory arrest under hypothermia. Astrocyte reactions were compared with preoperative normoxia (prenormoxia; n = 45). We observed astrocyte activation after 25°C ischemia-reperfusion/reoxygenation in prenormoxia (P < .01). Astrocyte number after OGD correlated with caspase-3(+) cells (rho = .77, P = .001), confirming that astrogliosis is an important response after HCA. At 3 hours after OGD, astrocytes in prenormoxia had already proliferated and become activated (P < .05). Conversely, astrocytes that developed under hypoxia did not display these responses. At 20 hours after ischemia-reperfusion/reoxygenation, astrogliosis was not observed in prehypoxia, demonstrating that hypoxia altered the response of astrocytes to insult. In contrast to prenormoxia, caspase-3(+) cells in prehypoxia increased after ischemia reperfusion/reoxygenation, compared with control (P < .01). Caspase-3(+) cells were more common with prehypoxia than with prenormoxia (P < .001), suggesting that lack of astrogliosis permits increased white-matter injury. Preoperative hypoxia alters the neuroprotective function of astrocytes. Restoring this function before surgery may be a therapeutic option to reduce postoperative white-matter injury in the immature brain. Copyright

  7. Control of the neurovascular coupling by nitric oxide-dependent regulation of astrocytic Ca2+ signaling

    PubMed Central

    Muñoz, Manuel F.; Puebla, Mariela; Figueroa, Xavier F.

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal activity must be tightly coordinated with blood flow to keep proper brain function, which is achieved by a mechanism known as neurovascular coupling. Then, an increase in synaptic activity leads to a dilation of local parenchymal arterioles that matches the enhanced metabolic demand. Neurovascular coupling is orchestrated by astrocytes. These glial cells are located between neurons and the microvasculature, with the astrocytic endfeet ensheathing the vessels, which allows fine intercellular communication. The neurotransmitters released during neuronal activity reach astrocytic receptors and trigger a Ca2+ signaling that propagates to the endfeet, activating the release of vasoactive factors and arteriolar dilation. The astrocyte Ca2+ signaling is coordinated by gap junction channels and hemichannels formed by connexins (Cx43 and Cx30) and channels formed by pannexins (Panx-1). The neuronal activity-initiated Ca2+ waves are propagated among neighboring astrocytes directly via gap junctions or through ATP release via connexin hemichannels or pannexin channels. In addition, Ca2+ entry via connexin hemichannels or pannexin channels may participate in the regulation of the astrocyte signaling-mediated neurovascular coupling. Interestingly, nitric oxide (NO) can activate connexin hemichannel by S-nitrosylation and the Ca2+-dependent NO-synthesizing enzymes endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) and neuronal NOS (nNOS) are expressed in astrocytes. Therefore, the astrocytic Ca2+ signaling triggered in neurovascular coupling may activate NO production, which, in turn, may lead to Ca2+ influx through hemichannel activation. Furthermore, NO release from the hemichannels located at astrocytic endfeet may contribute to the vasodilation of parenchymal arterioles. In this review, we discuss the mechanisms involved in the regulation of the astrocytic Ca2+ signaling that mediates neurovascular coupling, with a special emphasis in the possible participation of NO in this process

  8. Sulfocerebrosides upregulate liposome uptake in human astrocytes without inducing a proinflammatory response.

    PubMed

    Suesca, Elizabeth; Alejo, Jose Luis; Bolaños, Natalia I; Ocampo, Jackson; Leidy, Chad; González, John M

    2013-07-01

    Astrocytes are involved in the pathogenesis of demyelinating diseases, where they actively regulate the secretion of proinflammatory factors, and trigger the recruitment of immune cells in the central nervous system (CNS). Antigen presentation of myelin-derived proteins has been shown to trigger astrocyte response, suggesting that astrocytes can directly sense demyelination. However, the direct response of astrocytes to lipid-debris generated during demyelination has not been investigated. The lipid composition of the myelin sheath is distinct, presenting significant amounts of cerebrosides, sulfocerebrosides (SCB), and ceramides. Studies have shown that microglia are activated in the presence of myelin-derived lipids, pointing to the possibility of lipid-induced astrocyte activation. In this study, a human astrocyte cell line was exposed to liposomes enriched in each myelin lipid component. Although liposome uptake was observed for all compositions, astrocytes had augmented uptake for liposomes containing sulfocerebroside (SCB). This enhanced uptake did not modify their expression of human leukocyte antigen (HLA) molecules or secretion of chemokines. This was in contrast to changes observed in astrocyte cells stimulated with IFNγ. Contrary to human monocytes, astrocytes did not internalize beads in the size-range of liposomes, indicating that liposome uptake is lipid specific. Epifluorescence microscopy corroborated that liposome uptake takes place through endocytosis. Soluble SCB were found to partially block uptake of liposomes containing this same lipid. Endocytosis was not decreased when cells were treated with cytochalasin D, but it was decreased by cold temperature incubation. The specific uptake of SCB in the absence of a proinflammatory response indicates that astrocytes may participate in the trafficking and regulation of sulfocerebroside metabolism and homeostasis in the CNS. Copyright © 2013 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

  9. Astrocyte Sodium Signalling and Panglial Spread of Sodium Signals in Brain White Matter.

    PubMed

    Moshrefi-Ravasdjani, Behrouz; Hammel, Evelyn L; Kafitz, Karl W; Rose, Christine R

    2017-09-01

    In brain grey matter, excitatory synaptic transmission activates glutamate uptake into astrocytes, inducing sodium signals which propagate into neighboring astrocytes through gap junctions. These sodium signals have been suggested to serve an important role in neuro-metabolic coupling. So far, it is unknown if astrocytes in white matter-that is in brain regions devoid of synapses-are also able to undergo such intra- and intercellular sodium signalling. In the present study, we have addressed this question by performing quantitative sodium imaging in acute tissue slices of mouse corpus callosum. Focal application of glutamate induced sodium transients in SR101-positive astrocytes. These were largely unaltered in the presence of ionotropic glutamate receptors blockers, but strongly dampened upon pharmacological inhibition of glutamate uptake. Sodium signals induced in individual astrocytes readily spread into neighboring SR101-positive cells with peak amplitudes decaying monoexponentially with distance from the stimulated cell. In addition, spread of sodium was largely unaltered during pharmacological inhibition of purinergic and glutamate receptors, indicating gap junction-mediated, passive diffusion of sodium between astrocytes. Using cell-type-specific, transgenic reporter mice, we found that sodium signals also propagated, albeit less effectively, from astrocytes to neighboring oligodendrocytes and NG2 cells. Again, panglial spread was unaltered with purinergic and glutamate receptors blocked. Taken together, our results demonstrate that activation of sodium-dependent glutamate transporters induces sodium signals in white matter astrocytes, which spread within the astrocyte syncytium. In addition, we found a panglial passage of sodium signals from astrocytes to NG2 cells and oligodendrocytes, indicating functional coupling between these macroglial cells in white matter.

  10. Human astrocytes/astrocyte conditioned medium and shear stress enhance the barrier properties of human brain microvascular endothelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Siddharthan, Venkatraman; V. Kim, Yuri; Liu, Suyi; Kim, Kwang Sik

    2009-01-01

    The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a structural and functional barrier that regulates the passage of molecules into and out of the brain to maintain the neural microenvironment. We have previously developed the in vitro BBB model with human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC). However, in vivo HBMEC are shown to interact with astrocytes and also exposed to shear stress through blood flow. In an attempt to develop the BBB model to mimic the in vivo condition we constructed the flow-based in vitro BBB model using HBMEC and human fetal astrocytes (HFA). We also examined the effect of astrocyte conditioned medium (ACM) in lieu of HFA to study the role of secreted factor(s) on the BBB properties. The tightness of HBMEC monolayer was assessed by the permeability of dextran and propidium iodide as well as by measuring the transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER). We showed that the HBMEC permeability was reduced and TEER was increased by non-contact, co-cultivation with HFA and ACM. The exposure of HBMEC to shear stress also exhibited decreased permeability. Moreover, HFA/ACM and shear flow exhibited additive effect of decreasing the permeability of HBMEC monolayer. In addition, we showed that the HBMEC expression of ZO-1 (tight junction protein) was increased by co-cultivation with ACM and in response to shear stress. These findings suggest that the non-contact co-cultivation with HFA helps maintain the barrier properties of HBMEC by secreting factor(s) into the medium. Our in vitro flow model system with the cells of human origin should be useful for studying the interactions between endothelial cells, glial cells, and secreted factor(s) as well as the role of shear stress in the barrier property of HBMEC. PMID:17368578

  11. Response of Quiescent Cerebral Cortical Astrocytes to Nanofibrillar Scaffold Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayres, Virginia; Mujdat Tiryaki, Volkan; Xie, Kan; Ahmed, Ijaz; Shreiber, David I.

    2013-03-01

    We present results of an investigation to examine the hypothesis that the extracellular environment can trigger specific signaling cascades with morphological consequences. Differences in the morphological responses of quiescent cerebral cortical astrocytes cultured on the nanofibrillar matrices versus poly-L-lysine functionalized glass and Aclar, and unfunctionalized Aclar surfaces were demonstrated using atomic force microscopy (AFM) and phalloidin staining of F-actin. The differences and similarities of the morphological responses were consistent with differences and similarities of the surface polarity and surface roughness of the four surfaces investigated in this work, characterized using contact angle and AFM measurements. The three-dimensional capability of AFM was also used to identify differences in cell spreading. An initial quantitative immunolabeling study further identified significant differences in the activation of the Rho GTPases: Cdc42, Rac1, and RhoA, which are upstream regulators of the observed morphological responses: filopodia, lamellipodia, and stress fiber formation. The results support the hypothesis that the extracellular environment can trigger preferential activation of members of the Rho GTPase family with demonstrable morphological consequences for cerebral cortical astrocytes. The support of NSF PHY-095776 is acknowledged.

  12. Methamphetamine compromises gap junctional communication in astrocytes and neurons

    PubMed Central

    Castellano, Paul; Nwagbo, Chisom; Martinez, Luis R.; Eugenin, Eliseo A.

    2016-01-01

    Methamphetamine (meth) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant that results in psychological and physical dependency. The long-term effects of meth within the CNS include neuronal plasticity changes, blood–brain barrier compromise, inflammation, electrical dysfunction, neuronal/glial toxicity, and an increased risk to infectious diseases including HIV. Most of the reported meth effects in the CNS are related to dysregulation of chemical synapses by altering the release and uptake of neurotransmitters, especially dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine. However, little is known about the effects of meth on connexin (Cx) containing channels, such as gap junctions (GJ) and hemichannels (HC). We examined the effects of meth on Cx expression, function, and its role in NeuroAIDS. We found that meth altered Cx expression and localization, decreased GJ communication between neurons and astrocytes, and induced the opening of Cx43/Cx36 HC. Furthermore, we found that these changes in GJ and HC induced by meth treatment were mediated by activation of dopamine receptors, suggesting that dysregulation of dopamine signaling induced by meth is essential for GJ and HC compromise. Meth-induced changes in GJ and HC contributed to amplified CNS toxicity by dysregulating glutamate metabolism and increasing the susceptibility of neurons and astrocytes to bystander apoptosis induced by HIV. Together, our results indicate that connexin containing channels, GJ and HC, are essential in the pathogenesis of meth and increase the sensitivity of the CNS to HIV CNS disease. PMID:26953131

  13. Surface diffusion of astrocytic glutamate transporters shapes synaptic transmission.

    PubMed

    Murphy-Royal, Ciaran; Dupuis, Julien P; Varela, Juan A; Panatier, Aude; Pinson, Benoît; Baufreton, Jérôme; Groc, Laurent; Oliet, Stéphane H R

    2015-02-01

    Control of the glutamate time course in the synapse is crucial for excitatory transmission. This process is mainly ensured by astrocytic transporters, high expression of which is essential to compensate for their slow transport cycle. Although molecular mechanisms regulating transporter intracellular trafficking have been identified, the relationship between surface transporter dynamics and synaptic function remains unexplored. We found that GLT-1 transporters were highly mobile on rat astrocytes. Surface diffusion of GLT-1 was sensitive to neuronal and glial activities and was strongly reduced in the vicinity of glutamatergic synapses, favoring transporter retention. Notably, glutamate uncaging at synaptic sites increased GLT-1 diffusion, displacing transporters away from this compartment. Functionally, impairing GLT-1 membrane diffusion through cross-linking in vitro and in vivo slowed the kinetics of excitatory postsynaptic currents, indicative of a prolonged time course of synaptic glutamate. These data provide, to the best of our knowledge, the first evidence for a physiological role of GLT-1 surface diffusion in shaping synaptic transmission.

  14. Neurotoxic reactive astrocytes are induced by activated microglia

    PubMed Central

    Liddelow, Shane A; Guttenplan, Kevin A; Clarke, Laura E; Bennett, Frederick C; Bohlen, Christopher J; Schirmer, Lucas; Bennett, Mariko L; Münch, Alexandra E; Chung, Won-Suk; Peterson, Todd C; Wilton, Daniel K; Frouin, Arnaud; Napier, Brooke A; Panicker, Nikhil; Kumar, Manoj; Buckwalter, Marion S; Rowitch, David H; Dawson, Valina L; Dawson, Ted M; Stevens, Beth; Barres, Ben A

    2017-01-01

    Summary Reactive astrocytes are strongly induced by central nervous system (CNS) injury and disease but their role is poorly understood. Here we show that A1 reactive astrocytes are induced by classically-activated neuroinflammatory microglia. We show that activated microglia induce A1s by secreting Il-1α, TNFα, and C1q, and that these cytokines together are necessary and sufficient to induce A1s. A1s lose the ability to promote neuronal survival, outgrowth, synaptogenesis and phagocytosis, and induce death of neurons and oligodendrocytes. Death of axotomized CNS neurons in vivo is prevented when A1 formation is blocked. Finally, we show that A1s are highly present in human neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, Parkinson’s, ALS, and Multiple Sclerosis. Taken together these findings explain why CNS neurons die after axotomy, strongly suggest that A1s help to drive death of neurons and oligodendrocytes in neurodegenerative disorders, and point the way forward for developing new treatments of these diseases. PMID:28099414

  15. Mathematical investigation of IP3-dependent calcium dynamics in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Handy, Gregory; Taheri, Marsa; White, John A; Borisyuk, Alla

    2017-06-01

    We study evoked calcium dynamics in astrocytes, a major cell type in the mammalian brain. Experimental evidence has shown that such dynamics are highly variable between different trials, cells, and cell subcompartments. Here we present a qualitative analysis of a recent mathematical model of astrocyte calcium responses. We show how the major response types are generated in the model as a result of the underlying bifurcation structure. By varying key channel parameters, mimicking blockers used by experimentalists, we manipulate this underlying bifurcation structure and predict how the distributions of responses can change. We find that store-operated calcium channels, plasma membrane bound channels with little activity during calcium transients, have a surprisingly strong effect, underscoring the importance of considering these channels in both experiments and mathematical settings. Variation in the maximum flow in different calcium channels is also shown to determine the range of stable oscillations, as well as set the range of frequencies of the oscillations. Further, by conducting a randomized search through the parameter space and recording the resulting calcium responses, we create a database that can be used by experimentalists to help estimate the underlying channel distribution of their cells.

  16. Rhabdoid glioblastoma: an aggressive variaty of astrocytic tumor.

    PubMed

    Hiroyuki, Momota; Ogino, Jiro; Takahashi, Akira; Hasegawa, Tadashi; Wakabayashi, Toshihiko

    2015-02-01

    Rhabdoid glioblastoma (RGBM) is rare, but the most malignant among astrocytic tumors. Accumulating evidence indicates its highly aggressive nature and distinct histopathological features. Here, we report a new case of RGBM and review previously reported cases of astrocytic tumors with rhabdoid components. We describe a 58-year-old man who presented with aphasia and right-sided weakness. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a well-delineated intramedullary tumor in the left cerebral hemisphere. Partial resection of the tumor was performed. The tumor was histologically found to contain two distinct areas: a typical glioblastoma, and a rhabdoid component. Immunohistochemical analyses revealed expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and focal loss of the INI1 protein in rhabdoid cells, although fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis showed no loss of the INI1 gene. Despite subsequent radiochemotherapy for the glioblastoma, the patient died 4.3 months after surgery. Our literature review illustrates the aggressive clinical course and histopathological features of these tumors with GFAP and INI1 expression. INI1 protein dysfunction may be a possible cause of the rhabdoid phenotype. Gross total resection of the tumor and intensive radiochemotherapy may lead to better survival outcomes.

  17. Does menaquinone participate in brain astrocyte electron transport?

    PubMed

    Lovern, Douglas; Marbois, Beth

    2013-10-01

    Quinone compounds act as membrane resident carriers of electrons between components of the electron transport chain in the periplasmic space of prokaryotes and in the mitochondria of eukaryotes. Vitamin K is a quinone compound in the human body in a storage form as menaquinone (MK); distribution includes regulated amounts in mitochondrial membranes. The human brain, which has low amounts of typical vitamin K dependent function (e.g., gamma carboxylase) has relatively high levels of MK, and different regions of brain have different amounts. Coenzyme Q (Q), is a quinone synthesized de novo, and the levels of synthesis decline with age. The levels of MK are dependent on dietary intake and generally increase with age. MK has a characterized role in the transfer of electrons to fumarate in prokaryotes. A newly recognized fumarate cycle has been identified in brain astrocytes. The MK precursor menadione has been shown to donate electrons directly to mitochondrial complex III. Vitamin K compounds function in the electron transport chain of human brain astrocytes. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Impairments in Motor Neurons, Interneurons and Astrocytes Contribute to Hyperexcitability in ALS: Underlying Mechanisms and Paths to Therapy.

    PubMed

    Do-Ha, Dzung; Buskila, Yossi; Ooi, Lezanne

    2018-02-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterised by the loss of motor neurons leading to progressive paralysis and death. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and nerve excitability tests, several clinical studies have identified that cortical and peripheral hyperexcitability are among the earliest pathologies observed in ALS patients. The changes in the electrophysiological properties of motor neurons have been identified in both sporadic and familial ALS patients, despite the diverse etiology of the disease. The mechanisms behind the change in neuronal signalling are not well understood, though current findings implicate intrinsic changes in motor neurons and dysfunction of cells critical in regulating motor neuronal excitability, such as astrocytes and interneurons. Alterations in ion channel expression and/or function in motor neurons has been associated with changes in cortical and peripheral nerve excitability. In addition to these intrinsic changes in motor neurons, inhibitory signalling through GABAergic interneurons is also impaired in ALS, likely contributing to increased neuronal excitability. Astrocytes have also recently been implicated in increasing neuronal excitability in ALS by failing to adequately regulate glutamate levels and extracellular K + concentration at the synaptic cleft. As hyperexcitability is a common and early feature of ALS, it offers a therapeutic and diagnostic target. Thus, understanding the underlying pathways and mechanisms leading to hyperexcitability in ALS offers crucial insight for future development of ALS treatments.

  19. Comparative effects on rat primary astrocytes and C6 rat glioma cells cultures after 24-h exposure to silver nanoparticles (AgNPs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salazar-García, Samuel; Silva-Ramírez, Ana Sonia; Ramirez-Lee, Manuel A.; Rosas-Hernandez, Hector; Rangel-López, Edgar; Castillo, Claudia G.; Santamaría, Abel; Martinez-Castañon, Gabriel A.; Gonzalez, Carmen

    2015-11-01

    The aim of this work was to compare the effects of 24-h exposure of rat primary astrocytes and C6 rat glioma cells to 7.8 nm AgNPs. Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most aggressive primary brain tumor and current treatments lead to diverse side-effects; for this reason, it is imperative to investigate new approaches, including those alternatives provided by nanotechnology, like nanomaterials (NMs) such as silver nanoparticles. Herein, we found that C6 rat glioma cells, but no primary astrocytes, decreased cell viability after AgNPs treatment; however, both cell types diminished their proliferation. The decrease of glioma C6 cells proliferation was related with necrosis, while in primary astrocytes, the decreased proliferation was associated with the induction of apoptosis. The ionic control (AgNO3) exerted a different profile than AgNPs; the bulk form did not modify the basal effect in each determination, whereas cisplatin, a well-known antitumoral drug used as a comparative control, promoted cytotoxicity in both cell types at specific concentrations. Our findings prompt the need to determine the fine molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in the differential biological responses to AgNPs in order to develop new tools or alternatives based on nanotechnology that may contribute to the understanding, impact and use of NMs in specific targets, like glioblastoma cells.

  20. Transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 channels are involved in spontaneous peptide hormone release from astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Takizawa, Mai; Harada, Kazuki; Nakamura, Kazuaki; Tsuboi, Takashi

    2018-07-02

    Astrocytes, a large population of glial cells, detect neurotransmitters and respond by increasing intracellular Ca 2+ concentration ([Ca 2+ ] i ) and releasing chemical molecules called gliotransmitters. Recently discovered Ca 2+ influx through transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) channels is reported to cause spontaneous [Ca 2+ ] i increase in astrocytes. While several physiological functions of TRPA1-mediated spontaneous Ca 2+ signal have been revealed, relation with gliotransmitter release, especially peptide hormone exocytosis is largely unknown. We therefore explored the [Ca 2+ ] i and exocytosis dynamics in rat astrocyte cell line C6 cells and primary astrocytes. TRPA1-mediated spontaneous [Ca 2+ ] i transients were observed in both C6 cells and primary astrocytes. Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy revealed that Venus-tagged brain-derived neurotrophic factor and neuropeptide Y were released spontaneously from astrocytes. Activation of TRPA1 channels enhanced the frequency of peptide hormone exocytosis, and inhibition of TRPA1 channels decreased the number of peptide hormone exocytosis. These results suggest that TRPA1-mediated spontaneous [Ca 2+ ] i increase modulates the spontaneous release of peptide hormones from astrocytes. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Activity-dependent ATP-waves in the mouse neocortex are independent from astrocytic calcium waves.

    PubMed

    Haas, Brigitte; Schipke, Carola G; Peters, Oliver; Söhl, Goran; Willecke, Klaus; Kettenmann, Helmut

    2006-02-01

    In the corpus callosum, astrocytic calcium waves propagate via a mechanism involving ATP-release but not gap junctional coupling. In the present study, we report for the neocortex that calcium wave propagation depends on functional astrocytic gap junctions but is still accompanied by ATP-release. In acute slices obtained from the neocortex of mice deficient for astrocytic expression of connexin43, the calcium wave did not propagate. In contrast, in the corpus callosum and hippocampus of these mice, the wave propagated as in control animals. In addition to calcium wave propagation in astrocytes, ATP-release was recorded as a calcium signal from 'sniffer cells', a cell line expressing high-affinity purinergic receptors placed on the surface of the slice. The astrocyte calcium wave in the neocortex was accompanied by calcium signals in the 'sniffer cell' population. In the connexin43-deficient mice we recorded calcium signals from sniffer cells also in the absence of an astrocytic calcium wave. Our findings indicate that astrocytes propagate calcium signals by two separate mechanisms depending on the brain region and that ATP release can propagate within the neocortex independent from calcium waves.

  2. Bi-directionally protective communication between neurons and astrocytes under ischemia.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiao-Mei; Qian, Christopher; Zhou, Yu-Fu; Yan, Yick-Chun; Luo, Qian-Qian; Yung, Wing-Ho; Zhang, Fa-Li; Jiang, Li-Rong; Qian, Zhong Ming; Ke, Ya

    2017-10-01

    The extensive existing knowledge on bi-directional communication between astrocytes and neurons led us to hypothesize that not only ischemia-preconditioned (IP) astrocytes can protect neurons but also IP neurons protect astrocytes from lethal ischemic injury. Here, we demonstrated for the first time that neurons have a significant role in protecting astrocytes from ischemic injury. The cultured medium from IP neurons (IPcNCM) induced a remarkable reduction in LDH and an increase in cell viability in ischemic astrocytes in vitro. Selective neuronal loss by kainic acid injection induced a significant increase in apoptotic astrocyte numbers in the brain of ischemic rats in vivo. Furthermore, TUNEL analysis, DNA ladder assay, and the measurements of ROS, GSH, pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, anti-oxidant enzymes and signal molecules in vitro and/or in vivo demonstrated that IP neurons protect astrocytes by an EPO-mediated inhibition of pro-apoptotic signals, activation of anti-apoptotic proteins via the P13K/ERK/STAT5 pathways and activation of anti-oxidant proteins via up-regulation of anti-oxidant enzymes. We demonstrated the existence of astro-protection by IP neurons under ischemia and proposed that the bi-directionally protective communications between cells might be a common activity in the brain or peripheral organs under most if not all pathological conditions. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Methylglyoxal Induces Changes in the Glyoxalase System and Impairs Glutamate Uptake Activity in Primary Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Galland, Fabiana; Lirio, Franciane; de Souza, Daniela Fraga; Da Ré, Carollina; Pacheco, Rafaela Ferreira; Vizuete, Adriana Fernanda; Quincozes-Santos, André; Leite, Marina Concli; Gonçalves, Carlos-Alberto

    2017-01-01

    The impairment of astrocyte functions is associated with diabetes mellitus and other neurodegenerative diseases. Astrocytes have been proposed to be essential cells for neuroprotection against elevated levels of methylglyoxal (MG), a highly reactive aldehyde derived from the glycolytic pathway. MG exposure impairs primary astrocyte viability, as evaluated by different assays, and these cells respond to MG elevation by increasing glyoxalase 1 activity and glutathione levels, which improve cell viability and survival. However, C6 glioma cells have shown strong signs of resistance against MG, without significant changes in the glyoxalase system. Results for aminoguanidine coincubation support the idea that MG toxicity is mediated by glycation. We found a significant decrease in glutamate uptake by astrocytes, without changes in the expression of the major transporters. Carbenoxolone, a nonspecific inhibitor of gap junctions, prevented the cytotoxicity induced by MG in astrocyte cultures. Thus, our data reinforce the idea that astrocyte viability depends on gap junctions and that the impairment induced by MG involves glutamate excitotoxicity. The astrocyte susceptibility to MG emphasizes the importance of this compound in neurodegenerative diseases, where the neuronal damage induced by MG may be aggravated by the commitment of the cells charged with MG clearance. PMID:28685011

  4. Methylglyoxal Induces Changes in the Glyoxalase System and Impairs Glutamate Uptake Activity in Primary Astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Fernanda; Galland, Fabiana; Lirio, Franciane; de Souza, Daniela Fraga; Da Ré, Carollina; Pacheco, Rafaela Ferreira; Vizuete, Adriana Fernanda; Quincozes-Santos, André; Leite, Marina Concli; Gonçalves, Carlos-Alberto

    2017-01-01

    The impairment of astrocyte functions is associated with diabetes mellitus and other neurodegenerative diseases. Astrocytes have been proposed to be essential cells for neuroprotection against elevated levels of methylglyoxal (MG), a highly reactive aldehyde derived from the glycolytic pathway. MG exposure impairs primary astrocyte viability, as evaluated by different assays, and these cells respond to MG elevation by increasing glyoxalase 1 activity and glutathione levels, which improve cell viability and survival. However, C6 glioma cells have shown strong signs of resistance against MG, without significant changes in the glyoxalase system. Results for aminoguanidine coincubation support the idea that MG toxicity is mediated by glycation. We found a significant decrease in glutamate uptake by astrocytes, without changes in the expression of the major transporters. Carbenoxolone, a nonspecific inhibitor of gap junctions, prevented the cytotoxicity induced by MG in astrocyte cultures. Thus, our data reinforce the idea that astrocyte viability depends on gap junctions and that the impairment induced by MG involves glutamate excitotoxicity. The astrocyte susceptibility to MG emphasizes the importance of this compound in neurodegenerative diseases, where the neuronal damage induced by MG may be aggravated by the commitment of the cells charged with MG clearance.

  5. Phagocytic clearance of presynaptic dystrophies by reactive astrocytes in Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Gomez‐Arboledas, Angela; Davila, Jose C.; Sanchez‐Mejias, Elisabeth; Navarro, Victoria; Nuñez‐Diaz, Cristina; Sanchez‐Varo, Raquel; Sanchez‐Mico, Maria Virtudes; Trujillo‐Estrada, Laura; Fernandez‐Valenzuela, Juan Jose; Vizuete, Marisa; Comella, Joan X.; Galea, Elena

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Reactive astrogliosis, a complex process characterized by cell hypertrophy and upregulation of components of intermediate filaments, is a common feature in brains of Alzheimer's patients. Reactive astrocytes are found in close association with neuritic plaques; however, the precise role of these glial cells in disease pathogenesis is unknown. In this study, using immunohistochemical techniques and light and electron microscopy, we report that plaque‐associated reactive astrocytes enwrap, engulf and may digest presynaptic dystrophies in the hippocampus of amyloid precursor protein/presenilin‐1 (APP/PS1) mice. Microglia, the brain phagocytic population, was apparently not engaged in this clearance. Phagocytic reactive astrocytes were present in 35% and 67% of amyloid plaques at 6 and 12 months of age, respectively. The proportion of engulfed dystrophic neurites was low, around 7% of total dystrophies around plaques at both ages. This fact, along with the accumulation of dystrophic neurites during disease course, suggests that the efficiency of the astrocyte phagocytic process might be limited or impaired. Reactive astrocytes surrounding and engulfing dystrophic neurites were also detected in the hippocampus of Alzheimer's patients by confocal and ultrastructural analysis. We posit that the phagocytic activity of reactive astrocytes might contribute to clear dysfunctional synapses or synaptic debris, thereby restoring impaired neural circuits and reducing the inflammatory impact of damaged neuronal parts and/or limiting the amyloid pathology. Therefore, potentiation of the phagocytic properties of reactive astrocytes may represent a potential therapy in Alzheimer's disease. PMID:29178139

  6. Dephosphorylation of 2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate and 2-deoxyglucose export from cultured astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Forsyth, R J; Bartlett, K; Eyre, J

    1996-03-01

    Neurotransmitter-stimulated mobilization of astrocyte glycogen has been proposed as a basis for local energy homeostasis in brain. However, uncertainty remains over the fate of astrocyte glycogen. Upon transfer of cultured astrocytes pre-loaded with [2-3H]2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate at non-tracer concentrations to a glucose-free, 2-deoxyglucose-free medium, rapid dephosphorylation of a proportion of the intracellular 2-deoxyglucose 6-phosphate pool and export of 2-deoxyglucose to the extracellular fluid occurs. Astrocytes show very low, basal rates of gluconeogenesis from pyruvate (approx. 1 nmol mg protein-1 h-1). Astrocytes in vivo may be capable of physiologically significant glucose export from glucose-6-phosphate. The low gluconeogenic activity in astrocytes suggests that the most likely source of glucose-6-phosphate may be glycogen. These findings support the hypothesis that export, as glucose, to adjacent neurons may be one of the possible fate(s) of astrocytic glycogen. Such export of glycogen as glucose occurring in response to increases in neuronal activity could contribute to energy homeostasis on a paracrine scale within brain.

  7. A computational study of astrocytic glutamate influence on post-synaptic neuronal excitability.

    PubMed

    Flanagan, Bronac; McDaid, Liam; Wade, John; Wong-Lin, KongFatt; Harkin, Jim

    2018-04-01

    The ability of astrocytes to rapidly clear synaptic glutamate and purposefully release the excitatory transmitter is critical in the functioning of synapses and neuronal circuits. Dysfunctions of these homeostatic functions have been implicated in the pathology of brain disorders such as mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. However, the reasons for these dysfunctions are not clear from experimental data and computational models have been developed to provide further understanding of the implications of glutamate clearance from the extracellular space, as a result of EAAT2 downregulation: although they only partially account for the glutamate clearance process. In this work, we develop an explicit model of the astrocytic glutamate transporters, providing a more complete description of the glutamate chemical potential across the astrocytic membrane and its contribution to glutamate transporter driving force based on thermodynamic principles and experimental data. Analysis of our model demonstrates that increased astrocytic glutamate content due to glutamine synthetase downregulation also results in increased postsynaptic quantal size due to gliotransmission. Moreover, the proposed model demonstrates that increased astrocytic glutamate could prolong the time course of glutamate in the synaptic cleft and enhances astrocyte-induced slow inward currents, causing a disruption to the clarity of synaptic signalling and the occurrence of intervals of higher frequency postsynaptic firing. Overall, our work distilled the necessity of a low astrocytic glutamate concentration for reliable synaptic transmission of information and the possible implications of enhanced glutamate levels as in epilepsy.

  8. Role of voltage-gated K(+) channels in regulating Ca(2+) entry in rat cortical astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Wu, King-Chuen; Kuo, Chang-Shin; Chao, Chia-Chia; Huang, Chieh-Chen; Tu, Yuan-Kun; Chan, Paul; Leung, Yuk-Man

    2015-03-01

    Astrocytes have multiple functions such as provision of nourishment and mechanical support to the nervous system, helping to clear extracellular metabolites of neurons and modulating synaptic transmission by releasing gliotransmitters. In excitable cells, voltage-gated K(+) (Kv) channels serve to repolarize during action potentials. Astrocytes are considered non-excitable cells since they are not able to generate action potentials. There is an abundant expression of various Kv channels in astrocytes but the functions of these Kv channels remain unclear. We examined whether these astrocyte Kv channels regulate astrocyte "excitability" in the form of cytosolic Ca(2+) signaling. Electrophysiological examination revealed that neonatal rat cortical astrocytes possessed both delayed rectifier type and A-type Kv channels. Pharmacological blockade of both delayed rectifier Kv channels by TEA and A-type Kv channels by quinidine significantly suppressed store-operated Ca(2+) influx; however, TEA alone or quinidine alone did not suffice to cause such suppression. TEA and quinidine together dramatically enhanced current injection-triggered membrane potential overshoot (depolarization); either drug alone caused much smaller enhancements. Taken together, the results suggest both delayed rectifier and A-type Kv channels regulate astrocyte Ca(2+) signaling via controlling membrane potential.

  9. Genes involved in the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are specifically regulated in cortical astrocytes following sleep deprivation in mice.

    PubMed

    Petit, Jean-Marie; Gyger, Joël; Burlet-Godinot, Sophie; Fiumelli, Hubert; Martin, Jean-Luc; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2013-10-01

    There is growing evidence indicating that in order to meet the neuronal energy demands, astrocytes provide lactate as an energy substrate for neurons through a mechanism called "astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle" (ANLS). Since neuronal activity changes dramatically during vigilance states, we hypothesized that the ANLS may be regulated during the sleep-wake cycle. To test this hypothesis we investigated the expression of genes associated with the ANLS specifically in astrocytes following sleep deprivation. Astrocytes were purified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting from transgenic mice expressing the green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the human astrocytic GFAP-promoter. 6-hour instrumental sleep deprivation (TSD). Animal sleep research laboratory. Young (P23-P27) FVB/N-Tg (GFAP-GFP) 14Mes/J (Tg) mice of both sexes and 7-8 week male Tg and FVB/Nj mice. Basal sleep recordings and sleep deprivation achieved using a modified cage where animals were gently forced to move. Since Tg and FVB/Nj mice displayed a similar sleep-wake pattern, we performed a TSD in young Tg mice. Total RNA was extracted from the GFP-positive and GFP-negative cells sorted from cerebral cortex. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that levels of Glut1, α-2-Na/K pump, Glt1, and Ldha mRNAs were significantly increased following TSD in GFP-positive cells. In GFP-negative cells, a tendency to increase, although not significant, was observed for Ldha, Mct2, and α-3-Na/K pump mRNAs. This study shows that TSD induces the expression of genes associated with ANLS specifically in astrocytes, underlying the important role of astrocytes in the maintenance of the neuro-metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle.

  10. Astrocyte glycogen and lactate: New insights into learning and memory mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Alberini, Cristina M; Cruz, Emmanuel; Descalzi, Giannina; Bessières, Benjamin; Gao, Virginia

    2018-06-01

    Memory, the ability to retain learned information, is necessary for survival. Thus far, molecular and cellular investigations of memory formation and storage have mainly focused on neuronal mechanisms. In addition to neurons, however, the brain comprises other types of cells and systems, including glia and vasculature. Accordingly, recent experimental work has begun to ask questions about the roles of non-neuronal cells in memory formation. These studies provide evidence that all types of glial cells (astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and microglia) make important contributions to the processing of encoded information and storing memories. In this review, we summarize and discuss recent findings on the critical role of astrocytes as providers of energy for the long-lasting neuronal changes that are necessary for long-term memory formation. We focus on three main findings: first, the role of glucose metabolism and the learning- and activity-dependent metabolic coupling between astrocytes and neurons in the service of long-term memory formation; second, the role of astrocytic glucose metabolism in arousal, a state that contributes to the formation of very long-lasting and detailed memories; and finally, in light of the high energy demands of the brain during early development, we will discuss the possible role of astrocytic and neuronal glucose metabolisms in the formation of early-life memories. We conclude by proposing future directions and discussing the implications of these findings for brain health and disease. Astrocyte glycogenolysis and lactate play a critical role in memory formation. Emotionally salient experiences form strong memories by recruiting astrocytic β2 adrenergic receptors and astrocyte-generated lactate. Glycogenolysis and astrocyte-neuron metabolic coupling may also play critical roles in memory formation during development, when the energy requirements of brain metabolism are at their peak. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Mechanisms of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling under high extracellular K(+) concentrations.

    PubMed

    Murakami, Shingo; Kurachi, Yoshihisa

    2016-03-01

    In response to the elevation of extracellular K(+) concentration ([K(+)]out), astrocytes clear excessive K(+) to maintain conditions necessary for neural activity. K(+) clearance in astrocytes occurs via two processes: K(+) uptake and K(+) spatial buffering. High [K(+)]out also induces swelling in astrocytes, leading to edema and cell death in the brain. Despite the importance of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we report results from a simulation analysis of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling. Astrocyte models were constructed by incorporating various mechanisms such as intra/extracellular ion concentrations of Na(+), K(+), and Cl(-), cell volume, and models of Na,K-ATPase, Na-K-Cl cotransporter (NKCC), K-Cl cotransporter, inwardly-rectifying K(+) (KIR) channel, passive Cl(-) current, and aquaporin channel. The simulated response of astrocyte models under the uniform distribution of high [K(+)]out revealed significant contributions of NKCC and Na,K-ATPase to increases of intracellular K(+) and Cl(-) concentrations, and swelling. Moreover, we found that, under the non-uniform distribution of high [K(+)]out, KIR channels localized at synaptic clefts absorbed excess K(+) by depolarizing the equivalent potential of K(+) (E K) above membrane potential, while K(+) released through perivascular KIR channels was enhanced by hyperpolarizing E K and depolarizing membrane potential. Further analysis of simulated drug effects revealed that astrocyte swelling was modulated by blocking each of the ion channels and transporters. Our simulation analysis revealed controversial mechanisms of astrocytic K(+) clearance and swelling resulting from complex interactions among ion channels and transporters.

  12. Methamphetamine Inhibits the Glucose Uptake by Human Neurons and Astrocytes: Stabilization by Acetyl-L-Carnitine

    PubMed Central

    Szlachetka, Adam M.; Haorah, James

    2011-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH), an addictive psycho-stimulant drug exerts euphoric effects on users and abusers. It is also known to cause cognitive impairment and neurotoxicity. Here, we hypothesized that METH exposure impairs the glucose uptake and metabolism in human neurons and astrocytes. Deprivation of glucose is expected to cause neurotoxicity and neuronal degeneration due to depletion of energy. We found that METH exposure inhibited the glucose uptake by neurons and astrocytes, in which neurons were more sensitive to METH than astrocytes in primary culture. Adaptability of these cells to fatty acid oxidation as an alternative source of energy during glucose limitation appeared to regulate this differential sensitivity. Decrease in neuronal glucose uptake by METH was associated with reduction of glucose transporter protein-3 (GLUT3). Surprisingly, METH exposure showed biphasic effects on astrocytic glucose uptake, in which 20 µM increased the uptake while 200 µM inhibited glucose uptake. Dual effects of METH on glucose uptake were paralleled to changes in the expression of astrocytic glucose transporter protein-1 (GLUT1). The adaptive nature of astrocyte to mitochondrial β-oxidation of fatty acid appeared to contribute the survival of astrocytes during METH-induced glucose deprivation. This differential adaptive nature of neurons and astrocytes also governed the differential sensitivity to the toxicity of METH in these brain cells. The effect of acetyl-L-carnitine for enhanced production of ATP from fatty oxidation in glucose-free culture condition validated the adaptive nature of neurons and astrocytes. These findings suggest that deprivation of glucose-derived energy may contribute to neurotoxicity of METH abusers. PMID:21556365

  13. TGFβ signaling in the brain increases with aging and signals to astrocytes and innate immune cells in the weeks after stroke.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Kristian P; Cekanaviciute, Egle; Mamer, Lauren E; Buckwalter, Marion S

    2010-10-11

    TGFβ is both neuroprotective and a key immune system modulator and is likely to be an important target for future stroke therapy. The precise function of increased TGF-β1 after stroke is unknown and its pleiotropic nature means that it may convey a neuroprotective signal, orchestrate glial scarring or function as an important immune system regulator. We therefore investigated the time course and cell-specificity of TGFβ signaling after stroke, and whether its signaling pattern is altered by gender and aging. We performed distal middle cerebral artery occlusion strokes on 5 and 18 month old TGFβ reporter mice to get a readout of TGFβ responses after stroke in real time. To determine which cell type is the source of increased TGFβ production after stroke, brain sections were stained with an anti-TGFβ antibody, colocalized with markers for reactive astrocytes, neurons, and activated microglia. To determine which cells are responding to TGFβ after stroke, brain sections were double-labelled with anti-pSmad2, a marker of TGFβ signaling, and markers of neurons, oligodendrocytes, endothelial cells, astrocytes and microglia. TGFβ signaling increased 2 fold after stroke, beginning on day 1 and peaking on day 7. This pattern of increase was preserved in old animals and absolute TGFβ signaling in the brain increased with age. Activated microglia and macrophages were the predominant source of increased TGFβ after stroke and astrocytes and activated microglia and macrophages demonstrated dramatic upregulation of TGFβ signaling after stroke. TGFβ signaling in neurons and oligodendrocytes did not undergo marked changes. We found that TGFβ signaling increases with age and that astrocytes and activated microglia and macrophages are the main cell types that undergo increased TGFβ signaling in response to post-stroke increases in TGFβ. Therefore increased TGFβ after stroke likely regulates glial scar formation and the immune response to stroke.

  14. Rat nucleus accumbens core astrocytes modulate reward and the motivation to self-administer ethanol after abstinence.

    PubMed

    Bull, Cecilia; Freitas, Kelen C C; Zou, Shiping; Poland, Ryan S; Syed, Wahab A; Urban, Daniel J; Minter, Sabrina C; Shelton, Keith L; Hauser, Kurt F; Negus, S Stevens; Knapp, Pamela E; Bowers, M Scott

    2014-11-01

    Our understanding of the active role that astrocytes play in modulating neuronal function and behavior is rapidly expanding, but little is known about the role that astrocytes may play in drug-seeking behavior for commonly abused substances. Given that the nucleus accumbens is critically involved in substance abuse and motivation, we sought to determine whether nucleus accumbens astrocytes influence the motivation to self-administer ethanol following abstinence. We found that the packing density of astrocytes that were expressing glial fibrillary acidic protein increased in the nucleus accumbens core (NAcore) during abstinence from EtOH self-administration. No change was observed in the nucleus accumbens shell. This increased NAcore astrocyte density positively correlated with the motivation for ethanol. Astrocytes can communicate with one another and influence neuronal activity through gap-junction hemichannels. Because of this, the effect of blocking gap-junction hemichannels on the motivation for ethanol was examined. The motivation to self-administer ethanol after 3 weeks abstinence was increased following microinjection of gap-junction hemichannel blockers into the NAcore at doses that block both neuronal and astrocytic channels. In contrast, no effect was observed following microinjection of doses that are not thought to block astrocytic channels or following microinjection of either dose into the nucleus accumbens shell. Additionally, the motivation for sucrose after 3 weeks abstinence was unaffected by NAcore gap-junction hemichannel blockers. Next, Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs (DREADDs) were selectively expressed in NAcore astrocytes to test the effect of astrocyte stimulation. DREADD activation increased cytosolic calcium in primary astrocytes, facilitated responding for rewarding brain stimulation, and reduced the motivation for ethanol after 3 weeks abstinence. This is the first work to modulate drug-seeking behavior with

  15. NOVEL PRERETINAL HAIR PIN-LIKE VESSEL IN RETINAL ASTROCYTIC HAMARTOMA WITH VITREOUS HEMORRHAGE.

    PubMed

    Soeta, Megumi; Arai, Yusuke; Takahashi, Hidenori; Fujino, Yujiro; Tanabe, Tatsuro; Inoue, Yuji; Kawashima, Hidetoshi

    2018-01-01

    To report a case of retinal astrocytic hamartoma with vitreous hemorrhage and a hair pin-like vessel adhering to a posterior vitreous membrane. A 33-year-old man with a retinal astrocytic hamartoma presented with vitreous hemorrhage 5 times. Multimodal imaging, including fundus photography, fluorescein angiography, optical coherence tomography, and B-mode ultrasonography. Multimodal imaging demonstrated a novel hair pin-like vessel that adhered to the posterior vitreous membrane. Some cases of retinal astrocytic hamartoma with vitreous hemorrhage may be related to structure abnormalities of tumor vessels.

  16. Genes Involved in the Astrocyte-Neuron Lactate Shuttle (ANLS) Are Specifically Regulated in Cortical Astrocytes Following Sleep Deprivation in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Petit, Jean-Marie; Gyger, Joël; Burlet-Godinot, Sophie; Fiumelli, Hubert; Martin, Jean-Luc; Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2013-01-01

    Study Objectives: There is growing evidence indicating that in order to meet the neuronal energy demands, astrocytes provide lactate as an energy substrate for neurons through a mechanism called “astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle” (ANLS). Since neuronal activity changes dramatically during vigilance states, we hypothesized that the ANLS may be regulated during the sleep-wake cycle. To test this hypothesis we investigated the expression of genes associated with the ANLS specifically in astrocytes following sleep deprivation. Astrocytes were purified by fluorescence-activated cell sorting from transgenic mice expressing the green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the human astrocytic GFAP-promoter. Design: 6-hour instrumental sleep deprivation (TSD). Setting: Animal sleep research laboratory. Participants: Young (P23-P27) FVB/N-Tg (GFAP-GFP) 14Mes/J (Tg) mice of both sexes and 7-8 week male Tg and FVB/Nj mice. Interventions: Basal sleep recordings and sleep deprivation achieved using a modified cage where animals were gently forced to move. Measurements and Results: Since Tg and FVB/Nj mice displayed a similar sleep-wake pattern, we performed a TSD in young Tg mice. Total RNA was extracted from the GFP-positive and GFP-negative cells sorted from cerebral cortex. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that levels of Glut1, α-2-Na/K pump, Glt1, and Ldha mRNAs were significantly increased following TSD in GFP-positive cells. In GFP-negative cells, a tendency to increase, although not significant, was observed for Ldha, Mct2, and α-3-Na/K pump mRNAs. Conclusions: This study shows that TSD induces the expression of genes associated with ANLS specifically in astrocytes, underlying the important role of astrocytes in the maintenance of the neuro-metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle. Citation: Petit JM; Gyger J; Burlet-Godinot S; Fiumelli H; Martin JL; Magistretti PJ. Genes involved in the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are specifically

  17. Biosynthesis of Astrocytic Trehalose Regulates Neuronal Arborization in Hippocampal Neurons.

    PubMed

    Martano, Giuseppe; Gerosa, Laura; Prada, Ilaria; Garrone, Giulia; Krogh, Vittorio; Verderio, Claudia; Passafaro, Maria

    2017-09-20

    Trehalose is a nonreducing disaccharide that has recently attracted much attention because of its ability to inhibit protein aggregation, induce autophagy, and protect against dissections and strokes. In vertebrates, the biosynthesis of trehalose was long considered absent due to the lack of annotated genes involved in this process. In contrast, trehalase (TreH), which is an enzyme required for the cleavage of trehalose, is known to be conserved and expressed. Here, we show that trehalose is present as an endogenous metabolite in the rodent hippocampus. We found that primary astrocytes were able to synthesize trehalose and release it into the extracellular space. Notably, the TreH enzyme was observed only in the soma of neurons, which are the exclusive users of this substrate. A statistical analysis of the metabolome during different stages of maturation indicated that this metabolite is implicated in neuronal maturation. A morphological analysis of primary neurons confirmed that trehalose is required for neuronal arborization.

  18. Leptin regulates glutamate and glucose transporters in hypothalamic astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Fuente-Martín, Esther; García-Cáceres, Cristina; Granado, Miriam; de Ceballos, María L.; Sánchez-Garrido, Miguel Ángel; Sarman, Beatrix; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Dietrich, Marcelo O.; Tena-Sempere, Manuel; Argente-Arizón, Pilar; Díaz, Francisca; Argente, Jesús; Horvath, Tamas L.; Chowen, Julie A.

    2012-01-01

    Glial cells perform critical functions that alter the metabolism and activity of neurons, and there is increasing interest in their role in appetite and energy balance. Leptin, a key regulator of appetite and metabolism, has previously been reported to influence glial structural proteins and morphology. Here, we demonstrate that metabolic status and leptin also modify astrocyte-specific glutamate and glucose transporters, indicating that metabolic signals influence synaptic efficacy and glucose uptake and, ultimately, neuronal function. We found that basal and glucose-stimulated electrical activity of hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in mice were altered in the offspring of mothers fed a high-fat diet. In adulthood, increased body weight and fasting also altered the expression of glucose and glutamate transporters. These results demonstrate that whole-organism metabolism alters hypothalamic glial cell activity and suggest that these cells play an important role in the pathology of obesity. PMID:23064363

  19. Role of astrocytic glutamate transporter in alcohol use disorder

    PubMed Central

    Ayers-Ringler, Jennifer R; Jia, Yun-Fang; Qiu, Yan-Yan; Choi, Doo-Sup

    2016-01-01

    Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is one of the most widespread neuropsychiatric conditions, having a significant health and socioeconomic impact. According to the 2014 World Health Organization global status report on alcohol and health, the harmful use of alcohol is responsible for 5.9% of all deaths worldwide. Additionally, 5.1% of the global burden of disease and injury is ascribed to alcohol (measured in disability adjusted life years, or disability adjusted life years). Although the neurobiological basis of AUD is highly complex, the corticostriatal circuit contributes significantly to the development of addictive behaviors. In-depth investigation into the changes of the neurotransmitters in this circuit, dopamine, gamma-aminobutyricacid, and glutamate, and their corresponding neuronal receptors in AUD and other addictions enable us to understand the molecular basis of AUD. However, these discoveries have also revealed a dearth of knowledge regarding contributions from non-neuronal sources. Astrocytes, though intimately involved in synaptic function, had until recently been noticeably overlooked in their potential role in AUD. One major function of the astrocyte is protecting neurons from excitotoxicity by removing glutamate from the synapse via excitatory amino acid transporter type 2. The importance of this key transporter in addiction, as well as ethanol withdrawal, has recently become evident, though its regulation is still under investigation. Historically, pharmacotherapy for AUD has been focused on altering the activity of neuronal glutamate receptors. However, recent clinical evidence has supported the animal-based findings, showing that regulating glutamate homeostasis contributes to successful management of recovery from AUD. PMID:27014596

  20. Electrophilic nitro-fatty acids prevent astrocyte-mediated toxicity to motor neurons in a cell model of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis via nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor activation.

    PubMed

    Diaz-Amarilla, Pablo; Miquel, Ernesto; Trostchansky, Andrés; Trias, Emiliano; Ferreira, Ana M; Freeman, Bruce A; Cassina, Patricia; Barbeito, Luis; Vargas, Marcelo R; Rubbo, Homero

    2016-06-01

    Nitro-fatty acids (NO2-FA) are electrophilic signaling mediators formed in tissues during inflammation, which are able to induce pleiotropic cytoprotective and antioxidant pathways including up regulation of Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) responsive genes. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of motor neurons associated to an inflammatory process that usually aggravates the disease progression. In ALS animal models, the activation of the transcription factor Nrf2 in astrocytes confers protection to neighboring neurons. It is currently unknown whether NO2-FA can exert protective activity in ALS through Nrf2 activation. Herein we demonstrate that nitro-arachidonic acid (NO2-AA) or nitro-oleic acid (NO2-OA) administrated to astrocytes expressing the ALS-linked hSOD1(G93A) induce antioxidant phase II enzyme expression through Nrf2 activation concomitant with increasing intracellular glutathione levels. Furthermore, treatment of hSOD1(G93A)-expressing astrocytes with NO2-FA prevented their toxicity to motor neurons. Transfection of siRNA targeted to Nrf2 mRNA supported the involvement of Nrf2 activation in NO2-FA-mediated protective effects. Our results show for the first time that NO2-FA induce a potent Nrf2-dependent antioxidant response in astrocytes capable of preventing motor neurons death in a culture model of ALS. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Understanding spatial and temporal patterning of astrocyte calcium transients via interactions between network transport and extracellular diffusion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shtrahman, E.; Maruyama, D.; Olariu, E.; Fink, C. G.; Zochowski, M.

    2017-02-01

    Astrocytes form interconnected networks in the brain and communicate via calcium signaling. We investigate how modes of coupling between astrocytes influence the spatio-temporal patterns of calcium signaling within astrocyte networks and specifically how these network interactions promote coordination within this group of cells. To investigate these complex phenomena, we study reduced cultured networks of astrocytes and neurons. We image the spatial temporal patterns of astrocyte calcium activity and quantify how perturbing the coupling between astrocytes influences astrocyte activity patterns. To gain insight into the pattern formation observed in these cultured networks, we compare the experimentally observed calcium activity patterns to the patterns produced by a reduced computational model, where we represent astrocytes as simple units that integrate input through two mechanisms: gap junction coupling (network transport) and chemical release (extracellular diffusion). We examine the activity patterns in the simulated astrocyte network and their dependence upon these two coupling mechanisms. We find that gap junctions and extracellular chemical release interact in astrocyte networks to modulate the spatiotemporal patterns of their calcium dynamics. We show agreement between the computational and experimental findings, which suggests that the complex global patterns can be understood as a result of simple local coupling mechanisms.

  2. Insensitivity of Astrocytes to Interleukin-10 Signaling following Peripheral Immune Challenge Results in Prolonged Microglial Activation in the Aged Brain

    PubMed Central

    Norden, Diana M.; Trojanowski, Paige J.; Walker, Frederick R.; Godbout, Jonathan P.

    2017-01-01

    Immune-activated microglia from aged mice produce exaggerated levels of cytokines. Despite high levels of microglial IL-10 in the aged brain, neuroinflammation was prolonged and associated with depressive-like deficits. Because astrocytes respond to IL-10 and, in turn, attenuate microglial activation, we investigated if astrocyte-mediated resolution of microglial activation was impaired with age. Here, aged astrocytes had a dysfunctional profile with higher GFAP, lower glutamate transporter expression, and significant cytoskeletal re-arrangement. Moreover, aged astrocytes had reduced expression of growth factors and IL-10 Receptor-1 (IL-10R1). Following in vivo LPS immune challenge, aged astrocytes had a molecular signature associated with reduced responsiveness to IL-10. This IL-10 insensitivity of aged astrocytes resulted in a failure to induce IL-10R1 and TGFβ and resolve microglial activation. Additionally, adult astrocytes reduced microglial activation when co-cultured ex vivo, while aged astrocytes did not. Consistent with the aging studies, IL-10RKO astrocytes did not augment TGFβ after immune challenge and failed to resolve microglial activation. Collectively, a major cytokine-regulatory loop between activated microglia and astrocytes is impaired in the aged brain. PMID:27318131

  3. Brain-state dependent astrocytic Ca2+ signals are coupled to both positive and negative BOLD-fMRI signals.

    PubMed

    Wang, Maosen; He, Yi; Sejnowski, Terrence J; Yu, Xin

    2018-02-13

    Astrocytic Ca 2+ -mediated gliovascular interactions regulate the neurovascular network in situ and in vivo. However, it is difficult to measure directly both the astrocytic activity and fMRI to relate the various forms of blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signaling to brain states under normal and pathological conditions. In this study, fMRI and GCaMP-mediated Ca 2+ optical fiber recordings revealed distinct evoked astrocytic Ca 2+ signals that were coupled with positive BOLD signals and intrinsic astrocytic Ca 2+ signals that were coupled with negative BOLD signals. Both evoked and intrinsic astrocytic calcium signal could occur concurrently or respectively during stimulation. The intrinsic astrocytic calcium signal can be detected globally in multiple cortical sites in contrast to the evoked astrocytic calcium signal only detected at the activated cortical region. Unlike propagating Ca 2+ waves in spreading depolarization/depression, the intrinsic Ca 2+ spikes occurred simultaneously in both hemispheres and were initiated upon the activation of the central thalamus and midbrain reticular formation. The occurrence of the intrinsic astrocytic calcium signal is strongly coincident with an increased EEG power level of the brain resting-state fluctuation. These results demonstrate highly correlated astrocytic Ca 2+ spikes with bidirectional fMRI signals based on the thalamic regulation of cortical states, depicting a brain-state dependency of both astrocytic Ca 2+ and BOLD fMRI signals.

  4. Loss of Local Astrocyte Support Disrupts Action Potential Propagation and Glutamate Release Synchrony from Unmyelinated Hippocampal Axon Terminals In Vitro.

    PubMed

    Sobieski, Courtney; Jiang, Xiaoping; Crawford, Devon C; Mennerick, Steven

    2015-08-05

    Neuron-astrocyte interactions are critical for proper CNS development and function. Astrocytes secrete factors that are pivotal for synaptic development and function, neuronal metabolism, and neuronal survival. Our understanding of this relationship, however, remains incomplete due to technical hurdles that have prevented the removal of astrocytes from neuronal circuits without changing other important conditions. Here we overcame this obstacle by growing solitary rat hippocampal neurons on microcultures that were comprised of either an astrocyte bed (+astrocyte) or a collagen bed (-astrocyte) within the same culture dish. -Astrocyte autaptic evoked EPSCs, but not IPSCs, displayed an altered temporal profile, which included increased synaptic delay, increased time to peak, and severe glutamate release asynchrony, distinct from previously described quantal asynchrony. Although we observed minimal alteration of the somatically recorded action potential waveform, action potential propagation was altered. We observed a longer latency between somatic initiation and arrival at distal locations, which likely explains asynchronous EPSC peaks, and we observed broadening of the axonal spike, which likely underlies changes to evoked EPSC onset. No apparent changes in axon structure were observed, suggesting altered axonal excitability. In conclusion, we propose that local astrocyte support has an unappreciated role in maintaining glutamate release synchrony by disturbing axonal signal propagation. Certain glial cell types (oligodendrocytes, Schwann cells) facilitate the propagation of neuronal electrical signals, but a role for astrocytes has not been identified despite many other functions of astrocytes in supporting and modulating neuronal signaling. Under identical global conditions, we cultured neurons with or without local astrocyte support. Without local astrocytes, glutamate transmission was desynchronized by an alteration of the waveform and arrival time of axonal

  5. Loss of Local Astrocyte Support Disrupts Action Potential Propagation and Glutamate Release Synchrony from Unmyelinated Hippocampal Axon Terminals In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Sobieski, Courtney; Jiang, Xiaoping; Crawford, Devon C.

    2015-01-01

    Neuron–astrocyte interactions are critical for proper CNS development and function. Astrocytes secrete factors that are pivotal for synaptic development and function, neuronal metabolism, and neuronal survival. Our understanding of this relationship, however, remains incomplete due to technical hurdles that have prevented the removal of astrocytes from neuronal circuits without changing other important conditions. Here we overcame this obstacle by growing solitary rat hippocampal neurons on microcultures that were comprised of either an astrocyte bed (+astrocyte) or a collagen bed (−astrocyte) within the same culture dish. −Astrocyte autaptic evoked EPSCs, but not IPSCs, displayed an altered temporal profile, which included increased synaptic delay, increased time to peak, and severe glutamate release asynchrony, distinct from previously described quantal asynchrony. Although we observed minimal alteration of the somatically recorded action potential waveform, action potential propagation was altered. We observed a longer latency between somatic initiation and arrival at distal locations, which likely explains asynchronous EPSC peaks, and we observed broadening of the axonal spike, which likely underlies changes to evoked EPSC onset. No apparent changes in axon structure were observed, suggesting altered axonal excitability. In conclusion, we propose that local astrocyte support has an unappreciated role in maintaining glutamate release synchrony by disturbing axonal signal propagation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Certain glial cell types (oligodendrocytes, Schwann cells) facilitate the propagation of neuronal electrical signals, but a role for astrocytes has not been identified despite many other functions of astrocytes in supporting and modulating neuronal signaling. Under identical global conditions, we cultured neurons with or without local astrocyte support. Without local astrocytes, glutamate transmission was desynchronized by an alteration of the waveform

  6. Lactate flux in astrocytes is enhanced by a non-catalytic action of carbonic anhydrase II

    PubMed Central

    Stridh, Malin H; Alt, Marco D; Wittmann, Sarah; Heidtmann, Hella; Aggarwal, Mayank; Riederer, Brigitte; Seidler, Ursula; Wennemuth, Gunther; McKenna, Robert; Deitmer, Joachim W; Becker, Holger M

    2012-01-01

    Rapid exchange of metabolites between different cell types is crucial for energy homeostasis of the brain. Besides glucose, lactate is a major metabolite in the brain and is primarily produced in astrocytes. In the present study, we report that carbonic anhydrase 2 (CAII) enhances both influx and efflux of lactate in mouse cerebellar astrocytes. The augmentation of lactate transport is independent of the enzyme's catalytic activity, but requires direct binding of CAII to the C-terminal of the monocarboxylate transporter MCT1, one of the major lactate/proton cotransporters in astrocytes and most tissues. By employing its intramolecular proton shuttle, CAII, bound to MCT1, can act as a ‘proton collecting antenna’ for the transporter, suppressing the formation of proton microdomains at the transporter-pore and thereby enhancing lactate flux. By this mechanism CAII could enhance transfer of lactate between astrocytes and neurons and thus provide the neurons with an increased supply of energy substrate. PMID:22451434

  7. Astrocytes Specifically Remove Surface-Adsorbed Fibrinogen and Locally Express Chondroitin Sulfate Proteoglycans

    PubMed Central

    Hsiao, Tony W.; Swarup, Vimal P.; Kuberan, Balagurunathan; Tresco, Patrick A.; Hlady, Vladimir

    2013-01-01

    Surface-adsorbed fibrinogen (FBG) was recognized by adhering astrocytes and removed from the substrates in vitro by a two-phase removal process. The cells removed adsorbed FBG from binary proteins surface patterns (FBG + laminin, or FBG + albumin) while leaving the other protein behind. Astrocytes preferentially expressed chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan (CSPG) at the loci of fibrinogen stimuli; however no differences in overall CSPG production as a function of FBG surface coverage were identified. Removal of FBG by astrocytes was also found to be independent of transforming growth factor type β (TGF-β) receptor based signaling as cells maintained CSPG production in the presence of TGF-β receptor kinase inhibitor, SB 431542. The inhibitor decreased CSPG expression, but did not abolicsh it entirely. Because blood contact and subsequent FBG adsorption are unavoidable in neural implantations, the results indicate that implant-adsorbed FBG may contribute to reactive astrogliosis around the implant as astrocytes specifically recognize adsorbed FBG. PMID:23499985

  8. Sex differences in the neuroendocrine control of metabolism and the implication of astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Chowen, Julie A; Argente-Arizón, Pilar; Freire-Regatillo, Alejandra; Argente, Jesús

    2018-01-01

    Males and females have distinct propensities to develop obesity and its related comorbidities, partially due to gonadal steroids. There are sex differences in hypothalamic neuronal circuits, as well as in astrocytes, that participate in metabolic control and the development of obesity-associated complications. Astrocytes are involved in nutrient transport and metabolism, glucose sensing, synaptic remodeling and modulation of neuronal signaling. They express receptors for metabolic hormones and mediate effects of these metabolic signals on neurons, with astrogliosis occurring in response to high fat diet and excess weight gain. However, most studies of obesity have focused on males. Recent reports indicate that male and female astrocytes respond differently to metabolic signals and this could be involved in the differential response to high fat diet and the onset of obesity-associated pathologies. Here we focus on the sex differences in response to obesogenic paradigms and the possible role of hypothalamic astrocytes in this phenomenon. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Tibolone Preserves Mitochondrial Functionality and Cell Morphology in Astrocytic Cells Treated with Palmitic Acid.

    PubMed

    González-Giraldo, Yeimy; Garcia-Segura, Luis Miguel; Echeverria, Valentina; Barreto, George E

    2018-05-01

    Obesity has been associated with increased chronic neuroinflammation and augmented risk of neurodegeneration. This is worsened during the normal aging process when the levels of endogenous gonadal hormones are reduced. In this study, we have assessed the protective actions of tibolone, a synthetic steroid with estrogenic actions, on T98G human astrocytic cells exposed to palmitic acid, a saturated fatty acid used to mimic obesity in vitro. Tibolone improved cell survival, and preserved mitochondrial membrane potential in palmitic acid-treated astrocytic cells. Although we did not find significant actions of tibolone on free radical production, it modulated astrocytic morphology after treatment with palmitic acid. These data suggest that tibolone protects astrocytic cells by preserving both mitochondrial functionality and morphological complexity.

  10. Metabolic Changes Following Perinatal Asphyxia: Role of Astrocytes and Their Interaction with Neurons.

    PubMed

    Logica, Tamara; Riviere, Stephanie; Holubiec, Mariana I; Castilla, Rocío; Barreto, George E; Capani, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    Perinatal Asphyxia (PA) represents an important cause of severe neurological deficits including delayed mental and motor development, epilepsy, major cognitive deficits and blindness. The interaction between neurons, astrocytes and endothelial cells plays a central role coupling energy supply with changes in neuronal activity. Traditionally, experimental research focused on neurons, whereas astrocytes have been more related to the damage mechanisms of PA. Astrocytes carry out a number of functions that are critical to normal nervous system function, including uptake of neurotransmitters, regulation of pH and ion concentrations, and metabolic support for neurons. In this work, we aim to review metabolic neuron-astrocyte interactions with the purpose of encourage further research in this area in the context of PA, which is highly complex and its mechanisms and pathways have not been fully elucidated to this day.

  11. Protective effects of nicergoline against neuronal cell death induced by activated microglia and astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Mizuno, Tetsuya; Kuno, Reiko; Nitta, Atsumi; Nabeshima, Toshitaka; Zhang, Guiqin; Kawanokuchi, Jun; Wang, Jinyan; Jin, Shijie; Takeuchi, Hideyuki; Suzumura, Akio

    2005-12-20

    We examined the neuroprotective role of nicergoline in neuron-microglia or neuron-astrocytes co-cultures. Nicergoline, an ergoline derivative, significantly suppressed the neuronal cell death induced by co-culture with activated microglia or astrocytes stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon (IFN)-gamma. To elucidate the mechanism by which nicergoline exerts a neuroprotective effect, we examined the production of inflammatory mediators and neurotrophic factors in activated microglia and astrocytes following nicergoline treatment. In microglia stimulated with LPS and IFN-gamma, nicergoline suppressed the production of superoxide anions, interleukin (IL)-1beta, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha in a dose-dependent manner. In astrocytes, nicergoline also suppressed the production of proinflammatory cytokines and enhanced brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Thus, nicergoline-mediated neuroprotection resulted primarily from the inhibition of inflammatory mediators and the upregulation of neurotrophic factors by glial cells.

  12. Metabolic Changes Following Perinatal Asphyxia: Role of Astrocytes and Their Interaction with Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Logica, Tamara; Riviere, Stephanie; Holubiec, Mariana I.; Castilla, Rocío; Barreto, George E.; Capani, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    Perinatal Asphyxia (PA) represents an important cause of severe neurological deficits including delayed mental and motor development, epilepsy, major cognitive deficits and blindness. The interaction between neurons, astrocytes and endothelial cells plays a central role coupling energy supply with changes in neuronal activity. Traditionally, experimental research focused on neurons, whereas astrocytes have been more related to the damage mechanisms of PA. Astrocytes carry out a number of functions that are critical to normal nervous system function, including uptake of neurotransmitters, regulation of pH and ion concentrations, and metabolic support for neurons. In this work, we aim to review metabolic neuron-astrocyte interactions with the purpose of encourage further research in this area in the context of PA, which is highly complex and its mechanisms and pathways have not been fully elucidated to this day. PMID:27445788

  13. Insulin Regulates Astrocytic Glucose Handling Through Cooperation With IGF-I.

    PubMed

    Fernandez, Ana M; Hernandez-Garzón, Edwin; Perez-Domper, Paloma; Perez-Alvarez, Alberto; Mederos, Sara; Matsui, Takashi; Santi, Andrea; Trueba-Saiz, Angel; García-Guerra, Lucía; Pose-Utrilla, Julia; Fielitz, Jens; Olson, Eric N; Fernandez de la Rosa, Ruben; Garcia Garcia, Luis; Pozo, Miguel Angel; Iglesias, Teresa; Araque, Alfonso; Soya, Hideaki; Perea, Gertrudis; Martin, Eduardo D; Torres Aleman, Ignacio

    2017-01-01

    Brain activity requires a flux of glucose to active regions to sustain increased metabolic demands. Insulin, the main regulator of glucose handling in the body, has been traditionally considered not to intervene in this process. However, we now report that insulin modulates brain glucose metabolism by acting on astrocytes in concert with IGF-I. The cooperation of insulin and IGF-I is needed to recover neuronal activity after hypoglycemia. Analysis of underlying mechanisms show that the combined action of IGF-I and insulin synergistically stimulates a mitogen-activated protein kinase/protein kinase D pathway resulting in translocation of GLUT1 to the cell membrane through multiple protein-protein interactions involving the scaffolding protein GAIP-interacting protein C terminus and the GTPase RAC1. Our observations identify insulin-like peptides as physiological modulators of brain glucose handling, providing further support to consider the brain as a target organ in diabetes. © 2017 by the American Diabetes Association.

  14. Detection of the Cyanotoxins L-BMAA Uptake and Accumulation in Primary Neurons and Astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Tan, Vanessa X; Mazzocco, Claire; Varney, Bianca; Bodet, Dominique; Guillemin, Tristan A; Bessede, Alban; Guillemin, Gilles J

    2018-01-01

    We show for the first time that a newly developed polyclonal antibody (pAb) can specifically target the cyanotoxin β-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) and can be used to enable direct visualization of BMAA entry and accumulation in primary brain cells. We used this pAb to investigate the effect of acute and chronic accumulation, and toxicity of both BMAA and its natural isomer 2,4-diaminobutyric acid (DAB), separately or in combination, on primary cultures of rat neurons. We further present evidence that co-treatment with BMAA and DAB increased neuronal death, as measured by MAP2 fluorescence level, and appeared to reduce BMAA accumulation. DAB is likely to be acting synergistically with BMAA resulting in higher level of cellular toxicity. We also found that glial cells such as microglia and astrocytes are also able to directly uptake BMAA indicating that additional brain cell types are affected by BMAA-induced toxicity. Therefore, BMAA clearly acts at multiple cellular levels to possibly increase the risk of developing neurodegenerative diseases, including neuro- and gliotoxicity and synergetic exacerbation with other cyanotoxins.

  15. Identification of a Chrysanthemic Ester as an Apolipoprotein E Inducer in Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Wenchen; Shimizu, Yoko; Pfeifer, Tom A.; Tak, Jun-Hyung; Isman, Murray B.; Van den Hoven, Bernard; Duggan, Mark E.; Wood, Michael W.; Wellington, Cheryl L.

    2016-01-01

    The apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene is the most highly associated susceptibility locus for late onset Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), and augmenting the beneficial physiological functions of apoE is a proposed therapeutic strategy. In a high throughput phenotypic screen for small molecules that enhance apoE secretion from human CCF-STTG1 astrocytoma cells, we show the chrysanthemic ester 82879 robustly increases expressed apoE up to 9.4-fold and secreted apoE up to 6-fold and is associated with increased total cholesterol in conditioned media. Compound 82879 is unique as structural analogues, including pyrethroid esters, show no effect on apoE expression or secretion. 82879 also stimulates liver x receptor (LXR) target genes including ATP binding cassette A1 (ABCA1), LXRα and inducible degrader of low density lipoprotein receptor (IDOL) at both mRNA and protein levels. In particular, the lipid transporter ABCA1 was increased by up to 10.6-fold upon 82879 treatment. The findings from CCF-STTG1 cells were confirmed in primary human astrocytes from three donors, where increased apoE and ABCA1 was observed along with elevated secretion of high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-like apoE particles. Nuclear receptor transactivation assays revealed modest direct LXR agonism by compound 82879, yet 10 μM of 82879 significantly upregulated apoE mRNA in mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) depleted of both LXRα and LXRβ, demonstrating that 82879 can also induce apoE expression independent of LXR transactivation. By contrast, deletion of LXRs in MEFs completely blocked mRNA changes in ABCA1 even at 10 μM of 82879, indicating the ability of 82879 to stimulate ABCA1 expression is entirely dependent on LXR transactivation. Taken together, compound 82879 is a novel chrysanthemic ester capable of modulating apoE secretion as well as apoE-associated lipid metabolic pathways in astrocytes, which is structurally and mechanistically distinct from known LXR agonists. PMID:27598782

  16. The BCL-2 family protein Bid is critical for pro-inflammatory signaling in astrocytes.

    PubMed

    König, Hans-Georg; Coughlan, Karen S; Kinsella, Sinéad; Breen, Bridget A; Prehn, Jochen H M

    2014-10-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of motoneurons in the spinal cord, brainstem and motor cortex. Mutations in the superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) gene represent a frequent genetic determinant and recapitulate a disease phenotype similar to ALS when expressed in mice. Previous studies using SOD1(G93A) transgenic mice have suggested a paracrine mechanism of neuronal loss, in which cytokines and other toxic factors released from astroglia or microglia trigger motoneuron degeneration. Several pro-inflammatory cytokines activate death receptors and may downstream from this activate the Bcl-2 family protein, Bid. We here sought to investigate the role of Bid in astrocyte activation and non-cell autonomous motoneuron degeneration. We found that spinal cord Bid protein levels increased significantly during disease progression in SOD1(G93A) mice. Subsequent experiments in vitro indicated that Bid was expressed at relatively low levels in motoneurons, but was enriched in astrocytes and microglia. Bid was strongly induced in astrocytes in response to pro-inflammatory cytokines or exposure to lipopolysaccharide. Experiments in bid-deficient astrocytes or astrocytes treated with a small molecule Bid inhibitor demonstrated that Bid was required for the efficient activation of transcription factor nuclear factor-κB in response to these pro-inflammatory stimuli. Finally, we found that conditioned medium from wild-type astrocytes, but not from bid-deficient astrocytes, was toxic when applied to primary motoneuron cultures. Collectively, our data demonstrate a new role for the Bcl-2 family protein Bid as a mediator of astrocyte activation during neuroinflammation, and suggest that Bid activation may contribute to non-cell autonomous motoneuron degeneration in ALS. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Astrocyte activation and wound healing in intact-skull mouse after focal brain injury.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Takayuki; Sakata, Honami; Kato, Chiaki; Connor, John A; Morita, Mitsuhiro

    2012-12-01

    Localised brain tissue damage activates surrounding astrocytes, which significantly influences subsequent long-term pathological processes. Most existing focal brain injury models in rodents employ craniotomy to localise mechanical insults. However, the craniotomy procedure itself induces gliosis. To investigate perilesional astrocyte activation under conditions in which the skull is intact, we created focal brain injuries using light exposure through a cranial window made by thinning the skull without inducing gliosis. The lesion size was maximal at ~ 12 h and showed substantial recovery over the subsequent 30 days. Two distinct types of perilesional reactive astrocyte, identified by GFAP upregulation and hypertrophy, were found. In proximal regions the reactive astrocytes proliferated and expressed nestin, whereas in regions distal to the injury core the astrocytes showed increased GFAP expression but did not proliferate, lacked nestin expression, and displayed different morphology. Simply making the window did not induce any of these changes. There were also significant numbers of neurons in the recovering cortical tissue. In the recovery region, reactive astrocytes radially extended processes which appeared to influence the shapes of neuronal nuclei. The proximal reactive astrocytes also formed a cell layer which appeared to serve as a protective barrier, blocking the spread of IgG deposition and migration of microglia from the lesion core to surrounding tissue. The recovery was preceded by perilesional accumulation of leukocytes expressing vascular endothelial growth factor. These results suggest that, under intact skull conditions, focal brain injury is followed by perilesional reactive astrocyte activities that foster cortical tissue protection and recovery. © 2012 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  18. Dynamics of β-adrenergic/cAMP signaling and morphological changes in cultured astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Vardjan, Nina; Kreft, Marko; Zorec, Robert

    2014-04-01

    The morphology of astrocytes, likely regulated by cAMP, determines the structural association between astrocytes and the synapse, consequently modulating synaptic function. β-Adrenergic receptors (β-AR), which increase cytosolic cAMP concentration ([cAMP]i ), may affect cell morphology. However, the real-time dynamics of β-AR-mediated cAMP signaling in single live astrocytes and its effect on cell morphology have not been studied. We used the fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based cAMP biosensor Epac1-camps to study time-dependent changes in [cAMP]i ; morphological changes in primary rat astrocytes were monitored by real-time confocal microscopy. Stimulation of β-AR by adrenaline, noradrenaline, and isoprenaline, a specific agonist of β-AR, rapidly increased [cAMP]i (∼15 s). The FRET signal response, mediated via β-AR, was faster than in the presence of forskolin (twofold) and dibutyryl-cAMP (>35-fold), which directly activate adenylyl cyclase and Epac1-camps, respectively, likely due to slow entry of these agents into the cytosol. Oscillations in [cAMP]i have not been recorded, indicating that cAMP-dependent processes operate in a slow time domain. Most Epac1-camps expressing astrocytes revealed a morphological change upon β-AR activation and attained a stellate morphology within 1 h. The morphological changes exhibited a bell-shaped dependency on [cAMP]i . The 5-10% decrease in cell cross-sectional area and the 30-50% increase in cell perimeter are likely due to withdrawal of the cytoplasm to the perinuclear region and the appearance of protrusions on the surface of astrocytes. Because astrocyte processes ensheath neurons, β-AR/cAMP-mediated morphological changes can modify the geometry of the extracellular space, affecting synaptic, neuronal, and astrocyte functions in health and disease. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Exocytosis of ATP From Astrocytes Modulates Phasic and Tonic Inhibition in the Neocortex

    PubMed Central

    Rasooli-Nejad, Seyed; Andrew, Jemma; Haydon, Philip G.; Pankratov, Yuriy

    2014-01-01

    Communication between neuronal and glial cells is important for many brain functions. Astrocytes can modulate synaptic strength via Ca2+-stimulated release of various gliotransmitters, including glutamate and ATP. A physiological role of ATP release from astrocytes was suggested by its contribution to glial Ca2+-waves and purinergic modulation of neuronal activity and sleep homeostasis. The mechanisms underlying release of gliotransmitters remain uncertain, and exocytosis is the most intriguing and debated pathway. We investigated release of ATP from acutely dissociated cortical astrocytes using “sniff-cell” approach and demonstrated that release is vesicular in nature and can be triggered by elevation of intracellular Ca2+ via metabotropic and ionotropic receptors or direct UV-uncaging. The exocytosis of ATP from neocortical astrocytes occurred in the millisecond time scale contrasting with much slower nonvesicular release of gliotransmitters via Best1 and TREK-1 channels, reported recently in hippocampus. Furthermore, we discovered that elevation of cytosolic Ca2+ in cortical astrocytes triggered the release of ATP that directly activated quantal purinergic currents in the pyramidal neurons. The glia-driven burst of purinergic currents in neurons was followed by significant attenuation of both synaptic and tonic inhibition. The Ca2+-entry through the neuronal P2X purinoreceptors led to phosphorylation-dependent down-regulation of GABAA receptors. The negative purinergic modulation of postsynaptic GABA receptors was accompanied by small presynaptic enhancement of GABA release. Glia-driven purinergic modulation of inhibitory transmission was not observed in neurons when astrocytes expressed dn-SNARE to impair exocytosis. The astrocyte-driven purinergic currents and glia-driven modulation of GABA receptors were significantly reduced in the P2X4 KO mice. Our data provide a key evidence to support the physiological importance of exocytosis of ATP from astrocytes

  20. Sulfatase-mediated manipulation of the astrocyte-Schwann cell interface.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, Paul; Lindsay, Susan L; Pantiru, Andreea; Guimond, Scott E; Fagoe, Nitish; Verhaagen, Joost; Turnbull, Jeremy E; Riddell, John S; Barnett, Susan C

    2017-01-01

    Schwann cell (SC) transplantation following spinal cord injury (SCI) may have therapeutic potential. Functional recovery is limited however, due to poor SC interactions with host astrocytes and the induction of astrogliosis. Olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) are closely related to SCs, but intermix more readily with astrocytes in culture and induce less astrogliosis. We previously demonstrated that OECs express higher levels of sulfatases, enzymes that remove 6-O-sulfate groups from heparan sulphate proteoglycans, than SCs and that RNAi knockdown of sulfatase prevented OEC-astrocyte mixing in vitro. As human OECs are difficult to culture in large numbers we have genetically engineered SCs using lentiviral vectors to express sulfatase 1 and 2 (SC-S1S2) and assessed their ability to interact with astrocytes. We demonstrate that SC-S1S2s have increased integrin-dependent motility in the presence of astrocytes via modulation of NRG and FGF receptor-linked PI3K/AKT intracellular signaling and do not form boundaries with astrocytes in culture. SC-astrocyte mixing is dependent on local NRG concentration and we propose that sulfatase enzymes influence the bioavailability of NRG ligand and thus influence SC behavior. We further demonstrate that injection of sulfatase expressing SCs into spinal cord white matter results in less glial reactivity than control SC injections comparable to that of OEC injections. Our data indicate that sulfatase-mediated modification of the extracellular matrix can influence glial interactions with astrocytes, and that SCs engineered to express sulfatase may be more OEC-like in character. This approach may be beneficial for cell transplant-mediated spinal cord repair. GLIA 2016 GLIA 2017;65:19-33. © 2016 The Authors. Glia Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Attenuating astrocyte activation accelerates plaque pathogenesis in APP/PS1 mice

    PubMed Central

    Kraft, Andrew W.; Hu, Xiaoyan; Yoon, Hyejin; Yan, Ping; Xiao, Qingli; Wang, Yan; Gil, So Chon; Brown, Jennifer; Wilhelmsson, Ulrika; Restivo, Jessica L.; Cirrito, John R.; Holtzman, David M.; Kim, Jungsu; Pekny, Milos; Lee, Jin-Moo

    2013-01-01

    The accumulation of aggregated amyloid-β (Aβ) in amyloid plaques is a neuropathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Reactive astrocytes are intimately associated with amyloid plaques; however, their role in AD pathogenesis is unclear. We deleted the genes encoding two intermediate filament proteins required for astrocyte activation—glial fibrillary acid protein (Gfap) and vimentin (Vim)—in transgenic mice expressing mutant human amyloid precursor protein and presenilin-1 (APP/PS1). The gene deletions increased amyloid plaque load: APP/PS1 Gfap−/−Vim−/− mice had twice the plaque load of APP/PS1 Gfap+/+Vim+/+ mice at 8 and 12 mo of age. APP expression and soluble and interstitial fluid Aβ levels were unchanged, suggesting that the deletions had no effect on APP processing or Aβ generation. Astrocyte morphology was markedly altered by the deletions: wild-type astrocytes had hypertrophied processes that surrounded and infiltrated plaques, whereas Gfap−/−Vim−/− astrocytes had little process hypertrophy and lacked contact with adjacent plaques. Moreover, Gfap and Vim gene deletion resulted in a marked increase in dystrophic neurites (2- to 3-fold higher than APP/PS1 Gfap+/+Vim+/+ mice), even after normalization for amyloid load. These results suggest that astrocyte activation limits plaque growth and attenuates plaque-related dystrophic neurites. These activities may require intimate contact between astrocyte and plaque.—Kraft, A. W., Hu, X., Yoon, H., Yan, P., Xiao, Q., Wang, Y., Gil, S. C., Brown, J., Wilhelmsson, U., Restivo, J. L., Cirrito, J. R., Holtzman, D. M., Kim, J., Pekny, M., Lee, J.-M. Attenuating astrocyte activation accelerates plaque pathogenesis in APP/PS1 mice. PMID:23038755

  2. Glycine Receptor Activation Impairs ATP-Induced Calcium Transients in Cultured Cortical Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Morais, Tatiana P.; Coelho, David; Vaz, Sandra H.; Sebastião, Ana M.; Valente, Cláudia A.

    2018-01-01

    In central nervous system, glycine receptor (GlyR) is mostly expressed in the spinal cord and brainstem, but glycinergic transmission related elements have also been identified in the brain. Astrocytes are active elements at the tripartite synapse, being responsible for the maintenance of brain homeostasis and for the fine-tuning of synaptic activity. These cells communicate, spontaneously or in response to a stimulus, by elevations in their cytosolic calcium (calcium transients, Ca2+T) that can be propagated to other cells. How these Ca2+T are negatively modulated is yet poorly understood. In this work, we evaluated GlyR expression and its role on calcium signaling modulation in rat brain astrocytes. We first proved that GlyR, predominantly subunits α2 and β, was expressed in brain astrocytes and its localization was confirmed in the cytoplasm and astrocytic processes by immunohistochemistry assays. Calcium imaging experiments in cultured astrocytes showed that glycine (500 μM), a GlyR agonist, caused a concentration-dependent reduction in ATP-induced Ca2+T, an effect abolished by the GlyR antagonist, strychnine (0.8 μM), as well as by nocodazole (1 μM), known to impair GlyR anchorage to the plasma membrane. This effect was mimicked by activation of GABAAR, another Cl--permeable channel. In summary, we demonstrated that GlyR activation in astrocytes mediates an inhibitory effect upon ATP induced Ca2+T, which most probably involves changes in membrane permeability to Cl- and requires GlyR anchorage at the plasma membrane. GlyR in astrocytes may thus be part of a mechanism to modulate astrocyte-to-neuron communication. PMID:29386993

  3. Aspects of astrocyte energy metabolism, amino acid neurotransmitter homoeostasis and metabolic compartmentation

    PubMed Central

    Kreft, Marko; Bak, Lasse K; Waagepetersen, Helle S; Schousboe, Arne

    2012-01-01

    Astrocytes are key players in brain function; they are intimately involved in neuronal signalling processes and their metabolism is tightly coupled to that of neurons. In the present review, we will be concerned with a discussion of aspects of astrocyte metabolism, including energy-generating pathways and amino acid homoeostasis. A discussion of the impact that uptake of neurotransmitter glutamate may have on these pathways is included along with a section on metabolic compartmentation. PMID:22435484

  4. Globular adiponectin induces a pro-inflammatory response in human astrocytic cells

    SciTech Connect

    Wan, Zhongxiao; Mah, Dorrian; Simtchouk, Svetlana

    Highlights: • Adiponectin receptors are expressed in human astrocytes. • Globular adiponectin induces secretion of IL-6 and MCP-1 from cultured astrocytes. • Adiponectin may play a pro-inflammatory role in astrocytes. - Abstract: Neuroinflammation, mediated in part by activated brain astrocytes, plays a critical role in the development of neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Adiponectin is the most abundant adipokine secreted from adipose tissue and has been reported to exert both anti- and pro-inflammatory effects in peripheral tissues; however, the effects of adiponectin on astrocytes remain unknown. Shifts in peripheral concentrations of adipokines, including adiponectin, could contribute to the observedmore » link between midlife adiposity and increased AD risk. The aim of the present study was to characterize the effects of globular adiponectin (gAd) on pro-inflammatory cytokine mRNA expression and secretion in human U373 MG astrocytic cells and to explore the potential involvement of nuclear factor (NF)-κB, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and phosphatidylinositide 3-kinases (PI3 K) signaling pathways in these processes. We demonstrated expression of adiponectin receptor 1 (adipoR1) and adipoR2 in U373 MG cells and primary human astrocytes. gAd induced secretion of interleukin (IL)-6 and monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, and gene expression of IL-6, MCP-1, IL-1β and IL-8 in U373 MG cells. Using specific inhibitors, we found that NF-κB, p38MAPK and ERK1/2 pathways are involved in gAd-induced induction of cytokines with ERK1/2 contributing the most. These findings provide evidence that gAd may induce a pro-inflammatory phenotype in human astrocytes.« less

  5. Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-08-01

    and physiological functions of wild - type and recombinant neurons, as well as the effects of Tsc1-deficient astrocytes on neuronal morphology and...intrinsic mTOR activation of synaptic activities on wild -type and recombinant neurons, as well as the effects of Tsc1- deficient astrocytes on neuronal...more dendritic spines than wild type, non-recombinant neurons. The latter show a similar spine density to that of pyramidal neurons in a TSC1 wild type

  6. [Gap junctions: A new therapeutic target in major depressive disorder?].

    PubMed

    Sarrouilhe, D; Dejean, C

    2015-11-01

    Major depressive disorder is a multifactorial chronic and debilitating mood disease with high lifetime prevalence and is associated with excess mortality, especially from cardiovascular diseases and through suicide. The treatments of this disease with tricyclic antidepressants and monoamine oxidase inhibitors are poorly tolerated and those that selectively target serotonin and norepinephrine re-uptake are not effective in all patients, showing the need to find new therapeutic targets. Post-mortem studies of brains from patients with major depressive disorders described a reduced expression of the gap junction-forming membrane proteins connexin 30 and connexin 43 in the prefrontal cortex and the locus coeruleus. The use of chronic unpredictable stress, a rodent model of depression, suggests that astrocytic gap junction dysfunction contributes to the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder. Chronic treatments of rats with fluoxetine and of rat cultured cortical astrocytes with amitriptyline support the hypothesis that the upregulation of gap junctional intercellular communication between brain astrocytes could be a novel mechanism for the therapeutic effect of antidepressants. In conclusion, astrocytic gap junctions are emerging as a new potential therapeutic target for the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  7. Striatal astrocytes engulf dopaminergic debris in Parkinson's disease: A study in an animal model

    PubMed Central

    Morales, Ingrid; Sanchez, Alberto; Rodriguez-Sabate, Clara

    2017-01-01

    The role of astrocytes in Parkinson’s disease is still not well understood. This work studied the astrocytic response to the dopaminergic denervation. Rats were injected in the lateral ventricles with 6-hydroxydopamine (25μg), inducing a dopaminergic denervation of the striatum not accompanied by non-selective tissue damage. The dopaminergic debris were found within spheroids (free-spheroids) which retained some proteins of dopaminergic neurons (e.g., tyrosine hydroxylase, the dopamine transporter protein, and APP) but not others (e.g., α-synuclein). Free-spheroids showed the initial (LC3-autophagosomes) but not the late (Lamp1/Lamp2-lysosomes) components of autophagy (incomplete autophagy), preparing their autophagosomes for an external phagocytosis (accumulation of phosphatidylserine). Free-spheroids were penetrated by astrocyte processes (fenestrated-spheroids) which made them immunoreactive for GFAP and S100β, and which had some elements needed to continue the debris degradation (Lamp1/Lamp2). Finally, proteins normally found in neurons (TH, DAT and α-synuclein) were observed within astrocytes 2–5 days after the dopaminergic degeneration, suggesting that the intracellular contents of degenerated cells had been transferred to astrocytes. Taken together, present data suggest phagocytosis as a physiological role of striatal astrocytes, a role which could be critical for cleaning striatal debris during the initial stages of Parkinson’s disease. PMID:29028815

  8. Dimethyl sulfoxide damages mitochondrial integrity and membrane potential in cultured astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Chan; Gao, Junying; Guo, Jichao; Bai, Lei; Marshall, Charles; Cai, Zhiyou; Wang, Linmei; Xiao, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) is a polar organic solvent that is used to dissolve neuroprotective or neurotoxic agents in neuroscience research. However, DMSO itself also has pharmacological and pathological effects on the nervous system. Astrocytes play a central role in maintaining brain homeostasis, but the effect and mechanism of DMSO on astrocytes has not been studied. The present study showed that exposure of astrocyte cultures to 1% DMSO for 24 h did not significantly affect cell survival, but decreased cell viability and glial glutamate transporter expression, and caused mitochondrial swelling, membrane potential impairment and reactive oxygen species production, and subsequent cytochrome c release and caspase-3 activation. DMSO at concentrations of 5% significantly inhibited cell variability and promoted apoptosis of astrocytes, accompanied with more severe mitochondrial damage. These results suggest that mitochondrial impairment is a primary event in DMSO-induced astrocyte toxicity. The potential cytotoxic effects on astrocytes need to be carefully considered during investigating neuroprotective or neurotoxic effects of hydrophobic agents dissolved by DMSO.

  9. Dimethyl Sulfoxide Damages Mitochondrial Integrity and Membrane Potential in Cultured Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Chan; Gao, Junying; Guo, Jichao; Bai, Lei; Marshall, Charles; Cai, Zhiyou; Wang, Linmei; Xiao, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) is a polar organic solvent that is used to dissolve neuroprotective or neurotoxic agents in neuroscience research. However, DMSO itself also has pharmacological and pathological effects on the nervous system. Astrocytes play a central role in maintaining brain homeostasis, but the effect and mechanism of DMSO on astrocytes has not been studied. The present study showed that exposure of astrocyte cultures to 1% DMSO for 24 h did not significantly affect cell survival, but decreased cell viability and glial glutamate transporter expression, and caused mitochondrial swelling, membrane potential impairment and reactive oxygen species production, and subsequent cytochrome c release and caspase-3 activation. DMSO at concentrations of 5% significantly inhibited cell variability and promoted apoptosis of astrocytes, accompanied with more severe mitochondrial damage. These results suggest that mitochondrial impairment is a primary event in DMSO-induced astrocyte toxicity. The potential cytotoxic effects on astrocytes need to be carefully considered during investigating neuroprotective or neurotoxic effects of hydrophobic agents dissolved by DMSO. PMID:25238609

  10. Astrocytes increase barrier properties and ZO-1 expression in retinal vascular endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Gardner, T W; Lieth, E; Khin, S A; Barber, A J; Bonsall, D J; Lesher, T; Rice, K; Brennan, W A

    1997-10-01

    Diabetic retinopathy and other diseases associated with retinal edema are characterized by increased microvascular leakage. Astrocytes have been proposed to maintain endothelial function in the brain, suggesting that glial impairment may underlie the development of retinal edema. The purpose of this study was to test the effects of astrocytes on barrier properties in retinal microvascular endothelial cells. Bovine retinal microvascular endothelial cells were exposed to conditioned media from rat brain astrocytes. Transendothelial electrical resistance (TER) was determined on 24-mm Transwell (Cambridge, MA) polycarbonate filters with the End-Ohm device (World Precision Instruments, Sarasota, FL). ZO-1 protein content was quantified by microtiter enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Astrocyte-conditioned medium (ACM) significantly increased TER (P < 0.0001) and ZO-1 content (P < 0.01). Both serum-containing and serum-free N1B defined ACM increased ZO-1 expression, but heating abolished the effect. Serum-free ACM decreased cell proliferation by 16%. Astrocytes release soluble, heat-labile factors that increase barrier properties and tight junction protein content. These results suggest that astrocytes enhance blood-retinal barrier properties, at least in part by increasing tight junction protein expression. Our findings suggest that glial malfunction plays an important role in the pathogenesis of vasogenic retinal edema.

  11. Astrocytes Increase ATP Exocytosis Mediated Calcium Signaling in Response to Microgroove Structures

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Ajay V.; Raymond, Michael; Pace, Fabiano; Certo, Anthony; Zuidema, Jonathan M.; McKay, Christopher A.; Gilbert, Ryan J.; Lu, X. Lucas; Wan, Leo Q.

    2015-01-01

    Following central nervous system (CNS) injury, activated astrocytes form glial scars, which inhibit axonal regeneration, leading to long-term functional deficits. Engineered nanoscale scaffolds guide cell growth and enhance regeneration within models of spinal cord injury. However, the effects of micro-/nanosize scaffolds on astrocyte function are not well characterized. In this study, a high throughput (HTP) microscale platform was developed to study astrocyte cell behavior on micropatterned surfaces containing 1 μm spacing grooves with a depth of 250 or 500 nm. Significant changes in cell and nuclear elongation and alignment on patterned surfaces were observed, compared to on flat surfaces. The cytoskeleton components (particularly actin filaments and focal adhesions) and nucleus-centrosome axis were aligned along the grooved direction as well. More interestingly, astrocytes on micropatterned surfaces showed enhanced mitochondrial activity with lysosomes localized at the lamellipodia of the cells, accompanied by enhanced adenosine triphosphate (ATP) release and calcium activities. These data indicate that the lysosome-mediated ATP exocytosis and calcium signaling may play an important role in astrocytic responses to substrate topology. These new findings have furthered our understanding of the biomechanical regulation of astrocyte cell–substrate interactions, and may benefit the optimization of scaffold design for CNS healing. PMID:25597401

  12. Differential Acute and Chronic Effects of Leptin on Hypothalamic Astrocyte Morphology and Synaptic Protein Levels

    PubMed Central

    García-Cáceres, Cristina; Fuente-Martín, Esther; Burgos-Ramos, Emma; Granado, Miriam; Frago, Laura M.; Barrios, Vicente; Horvath, Tamas

    2011-01-01

    Astrocytes participate in neuroendocrine functions partially through modulation of synaptic input density in the hypothalamus. Indeed, glial ensheathing of neurons is modified by specific hormones, thus determining the availability of neuronal membrane space for synaptic inputs, with the loss of this plasticity possibly being involved in pathological processes. Leptin modulates synaptic inputs in the hypothalamus, but whether astrocytes participate in this action is unknown. Here we report that astrocyte structural proteins, such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and vimentin, are induced and astrocyte morphology modified by chronic leptin administration (intracerebroventricular, 2 wk), with these changes being inversely related to modifications in synaptic protein densities. Similar changes in glial structural proteins were observed in adult male rats that had increased body weight and circulating leptin levels due to neonatal overnutrition (overnutrition: four pups/litter vs. control: 12 pups/litter). However, acute leptin treatment reduced hypothalamic GFAP levels and induced synaptic protein levels 1 h after administration, with no effect on vimentin. In primary hypothalamic astrocyte cultures leptin also reduced GFAP levels at 1 h, with an induction at 24 h, indicating a possible direct effect of leptin. Hence, one mechanism by which leptin may affect metabolism is by modifying hypothalamic astrocyte morphology, which in turn could alter synaptic inputs to hypothalamic neurons. Furthermore, the responses to acute and chronic leptin exposure are inverse, raising the possibility that increased glial activation in response to chronic leptin exposure could be involved in central leptin resistance. PMID:21343257

  13. Differential Relationships of Reactive Astrocytes and Microglia to Fibrillar Amyloid Deposits in Alzheimer Disease

    PubMed Central

    Serrano-Pozo, Alberto; Muzikansky, Alona; Gómez-Isla, Teresa; Growdon, John H.; Betensky, Rebecca A.; Frosch, Matthew P.; Hyman, Bradley T.

    2013-01-01

    While it is clear that astrocytes and microglia cluster around dense-core amyloid plaques in Alzheimer disease (AD), whether they are primarily attracted to amyloid deposits or are just reacting to plaque-associated neuritic damage remains elusive. We postulate that astrocytes and microglia may differentially respond to fibrillar amyloid β (Aβ). Therefore, we quantified the size distribution of dense-core Thioflavin-S (ThioS)-positive plaques in the temporal neocortex of 40 AD patients and the microglial and astrocyte responses in their vicinity (≤50 μm), and performed correlations between both measures. As expected, both astrocytes and microglia were clearly spatially associated with ThioS-positive plaques (p = 0.0001, ≤50 μm vs. >50 μm from their edge), but their relationship to ThioS-positive plaque size differed; larger ThioS-positive plaques were associated with more surrounding activated microglia (p = 0.0026), but this effect was not observed with reactive astrocytes. Microglial response to dense-core plaques appears to be proportional to their size, which we postulate reflects a chemotactic effect of Aβ. By contrast, plaque-associated astrocytic response does not correlate with plaque size and seems to parallel the behavior of plaque-associated neuritic damage. PMID:23656989

  14. Regulation of neuron-astrocyte metabolic coupling across the sleep-wake cycle.

    PubMed

    Petit, J-M; Magistretti, P J

    2016-05-26

    Over the last thirty years, a growing number of studies showed that astrocytes play a pivotal role in the energy support to synapses. More precisely, astrocytes adjust energy production to neuronal energy needs through different mechanisms grouped under the term "neurometabolic coupling" (NMC). In this review we describe these mechanisms of coupling and how they involve astrocytes. From a physiological point of view, these mechanisms of coupling are particularly important to ensure normal synaptic functioning when neurons undergo rapid and repetitive changes in the firing rate such as during the sleep/wake transitions. Investigations into brain energy metabolism during the sleep/wake cycle have been mainly focused on glucose (Gluc) consumption and on glycogen metabolism. However, the recent development of substrate-specific biosensors allowed measurements of the variation in extracellular levels of glutamate, Gluc and lactate (Lac) with a time resolution compatible with sleep stage duration. Together with gene expression data these experiments allowed to better define the variations of energy metabolite regulation across the sleep/wake cycle. The aim of this review is to bring into perspective the role of astrocytes and NMC in the regulation of the sleep/wake cycle. The data reviewed also suggest an important role of the astrocytic network. In addition, the role of astrocytes in NMC mechanisms is consistent with the "local and use dependent" sleep hypothesis. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  15. Astrocyte Mediated Protection of Fetal Cerebral Cortical Neurons from Rotenone and Paraquat

    PubMed Central

    Rathinam, Mary Latha; Watts, Lora Talley; Narasimhan, Madhusudhanan; Riar, Amanjot Kaur; Mahimainathan, Lenin; Henderson, George.I.

    2012-01-01

    Primary cultures of fetal rat cortical neurons and astrocytes were used to test the hypothesis that astrocyte-mediated control of neuronal glutathione (GSH) is a potent factor in neuroprotection against rotenone and paraquat. In neurons, rotenone (0.025 to 1μM) for 4 and 24 h decreased viability as did paraquat (2 to 100μM). Rotenone (30nM) decreased neuronal viability and GSH by 24% and 30%, while ROS were increased by 56%. Paraquat (30μM) decreased neuronal viability and GSH by 36% and 70%, while ROS were increased by 23%. When neurons were co-cultured with astrocytes, their GSH increased 1.5 fold and 5 fold at 12 and 24 h. Co-culturing with astrocytes blocked neuronal death and damage by rotenone and paraquat. Astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection was dependent on the activity of components of the γ-glutamyl cycle. These studies illustrate the importance of astrocyte-mediated glutathione homeostasis for protection of neurons from rotenone and paraquat and the role of the γ-glutamyl cycle in this neuroprotection PMID:22301167

  16. Albumin elicits calcium signals from astrocytes in brain slices from neonatal rat cortex

    PubMed Central

    Nadal, Angel; Sul, Jai-Yoon; Valdeolmillos, Miguel; McNaughton, Peter A

    1998-01-01

    Albumin causes calcium signals and mitosis in cultured astrocytes, but it has not been established whether astrocytes in intact brain also respond to albumin. The effect of albumin on intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) in single cells was therefore studied in acutely isolated cortical brain slices from the neonatal rat.Physiological concentrations of albumin from plasma and from serum produced an increase in [Ca2+]i in a subpopulation of cortical cells. Trains of transient elevations in [Ca2+]i (Ca2+ spikes) were seen in 41 % of these cells.The cells responding to albumin are identified as astrocytes because the neurone-specific agonist NMDA caused much smaller and slower responses in these cells. On the other hand NMDA-responsive cells, which are probably neurones, exhibited only small and slow responses to albumin. The residual responses of astrocytes to NMDA and neurones to albumin are likely to be due to crosstalk with adjacent neurones and astrocytes, respectively.Methanol extraction of albumin removes a polar lipid and abolishes the ability of albumin to increase intracellular calcium.Astrocyte calcium signalling caused by albumin may have important physiological consequences when the blood-brain barrier breaks down and allows albumin to enter the CNS. PMID:9596793

  17. Astrocytes acquire resistance to iron-dependent oxidative stress upon proinflammatory activation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Astrocytes respond to local insults within the brain and the spinal cord with important changes in their phenotype. This process, overall known as “activation”, is observed upon proinflammatory stimulation and leads astrocytes to acquire either a detrimental phenotype, thereby contributing to the neurodegenerative process, or a protective phenotype, thus supporting neuronal survival. Within the mechanisms responsible for inflammatory neurodegeneration, oxidative stress plays a major role and has recently been recognized to be heavily influenced by changes in cytosolic iron levels. In this work, we investigated how activation affects the competence of astrocytes to handle iron overload and the ensuing oxidative stress. Methods Cultures of pure cortical astrocytes were preincubated with proinflammatory cytokines (interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor α) or conditioned medium from lipopolysaccharide-activated microglia to promote activation and then exposed to a protocol of iron overload. Results We demonstrate that activated astrocytes display an efficient protection against iron-mediated oxidative stress and cell death. Based on this evidence, we performed a comprehensive biochemical and molecular analysis, including a transcriptomic approach, to identify the molecular basis of this resistance. Conclusions We propose the protective phenotype acquired after activation not to involve the most common astrocytic antioxidant pathway, based on the Nrf2 transcription factor, but to result from a complex change in the expression and activity of several genes involved in the control of cellular redox state. PMID:24160637

  18. α₂-Adrenoceptors activate noradrenaline-mediated glycogen turnover in chick astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Hutchinson, Dana S; Catus, Stephanie L; Merlin, Jon; Summers, Roger J; Gibbs, Marie E

    2011-06-01

    In the brain, glycogen is primarily stored in astrocytes where it is regulated by several hormones/neurotransmitters, including noradrenaline that controls glycogen breakdown (in the short term) and synthesis. Here, we have examined the adrenoceptor (AR) subtype that mediates the glycogenic effect of noradrenaline in chick primary astrocytes by the measurement of glycogen turnover (total (14) C incorporation of glucose into glycogen) following noradrenergic activation. Noradrenaline and insulin increased glycogen turnover in a concentration-dependent manner. The effect of noradrenaline was mimicked by stimulation of α(2) -ARs (and to a lesser degree by β(3) -ARs), but not by stimulation of α(1) -, β(1) -, or β(2) -ARs, and occurred only in astrocytes and not neurons. In chick astrocytes, studies using RT-PCR and radioligand binding showed that α(2A) - and α(2C) -AR mRNA and protein were present. α(2) -AR- or insulin-mediated glycogen turnover was inhibited by phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase inhibitors, and both insulin and clonidine caused phosphorylation of Akt and glycogen synthase kinase-3 in chick astrocytes. α(2) -AR but not insulin-mediated glycogen turnover was inhibited by pertussis toxin pre-treatment indicating involvement of Gi/o proteins. These results show that the increase in glycogen turnover caused by noradrenaline is because of activation of α(2) -ARs that increase glycogen turnover in astrocytes utilizing a Gi/o-PI3K pathway. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of Neurochemistry © 2011 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  19. Nanosecond UV lasers stimulate transient Ca2+ elevations in human hNT astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Raos, B J; Graham, E S; Unsworth, C P

    2017-06-01

    Astrocytes respond to various stimuli resulting in intracellular Ca 2+ signals that can propagate through organized functional networks. Recent literature calls for the development of techniques that can stimulate astrocytes in a fast and highly localized manner to emulate more closely the characteristics of astrocytic Ca 2+ signals in vivo. In this article we demonstrate, for the first time, how nanosecond UV lasers are capable of reproducibly stimulating Ca 2+ transients in human hNT astrocytes. We report that laser pulses with a beam energy of 4-29 µJ generate transient increases in cytosolic Ca 2+ . These Ca 2+ transients then propagate to adjacent astrocytes as intercellular Ca 2+ waves. We propose that nanosecond laser stimulation provides a valuable tool for enabling the study of Ca 2+ dynamics in human astrocytes at both a single cell and network level. Compared to previously developed techniques nanosecond laser stimulation has the advantage of not requiring loading of photo-caged or -sensitising agents, is non-contact, enables stimulation with a high spatiotemporal resolution and is comparatively cost effective.

  20. Astrocytic modulation of blood brain barrier: perspectives on Parkinson’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Cabezas, Ricardo; Ávila, Marcos; Gonzalez, Janneth; El-Bachá, Ramon Santos; Báez, Eliana; García-Segura, Luis Miguel; Jurado Coronel, Juan Camilo; Capani, Francisco; Cardona-Gomez, Gloria Patricia; Barreto, George E.

    2014-01-01

    The blood–brain barrier (BBB) is a tightly regulated interface in the Central Nervous System (CNS) that regulates the exchange of molecules in and out from the brain thus maintaining the CNS homeostasis. It is mainly composed of endothelial cells (ECs), pericytes and astrocytes that create a neurovascular unit (NVU) with the adjacent neurons. Astrocytes are essential for the formation and maintenance of the BBB by providing secreted factors that lead to the adequate association between the cells of the BBB and the formation of strong tight junctions. Under neurological disorders, such as chronic cerebral ischemia, brain trauma, Epilepsy, Alzheimer and Parkinson’s Diseases, a disruption of the BBB takes place, involving a lost in the permeability of the barrier and phenotypical changes in both the ECs and astrocytes. In this aspect, it has been established that the process of reactive gliosis is a common feature of astrocytes during BBB disruption, which has a detrimental effect on the barrier function and a subsequent damage in neuronal survival. In this review we discuss the implications of astrocyte functions in the protection of the BBB, and in the development of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and related disorders. Additionally, we highlight the current and future strategies in astrocyte protection aimed at the development of restorative therapies for the BBB in pathological conditions. PMID:25136294

  1. DJ-1 deficiency in astrocytes selectively enhances mitochondrial Complex I inhibitor-induced neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Mullett, Steven J.; Hinkle, David A.

    2011-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) brains show evidence of mitochondrial respiratory Complex I deficiency, oxidative stress, and neuronal death. Complex I-inhibiting neurotoxins, such as the pesticide rotenone, cause neuronal death and parkinsonism in animal models. We have previously shown that DJ-1 over-expression in astrocytes augments their capacity to protect neurons against rotenone, that DJ-1 knock-down impairs astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection against rotenone, and that each process involves astrocyte-released factors. To further investigate the mechanism behind these findings, we developed a high-throughput, plate-based bioassay that can be used to assess how genetic manipulations in astrocytes affect their ability to protect co-cultured neurons. We used this bioassay to show that DJ-1 deficiency-induced impairments in astrocyte-mediated neuroprotection occur solely in the presence of pesticides that inhibit Complex I (rotenone, pyridaben, fenazaquin, and fenpyroximate); not with agents that inhibit Complexes II-V, that primarily induce oxidative stress, or that inhibit the proteasome. This is a potentially PD-relevant finding because pesticide exposure is epidemiologically-linked with an increased risk for PD. Further investigations into our model suggested that astrocytic glutathione and heme oxygenase-1 anti-oxidant systems are not central to the neuroprotective mechanism. PMID:21219333

  2. Effect of Huperzine A on Aβ-induced p65 of astrocyte in vitro.

    PubMed

    Xie, Lushuang; Jiang, Cen; Wang, Zhang; Yi, Xiaohong; Gong, Yuanyuan; Chen, Yunhui; Fu, Yan

    2016-12-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common cause of dementia. Its pathology often accompanies inflammatory action, and astrocytes play important roles in such procedure. Rela(p65) is one of significant message factors in NF-κB pathway which has been reported high expression in astrocyte treated by Aβ. HupA, an alkaloid isolated from Chinese herb Huperzia serrata, has been widely used to treat AD and observations reflected that it improves memory and cognitive capacity of AD patients. To reveal its molecular mechanisms on p65, we cultured astrocytes, built Aβ-induced AD model, treated astrocytes with HupA at different concentrations, assayed cell viability with MTT, and detected p65 expression by immunohistochemistry and PCR. Our results revealed that treatment with 10 μM Aβ1-42 for 24 h induced a significant increase of NF-κB in astrocytes; HupA significantly down-regulated p65 expression induced by Aβ in astrocytes. This study infers that HupA can regulate NF-κB pathway to treat AD.

  3. Huperzine A, but not tacrine, stimulates S100B secretion in astrocyte cultures.

    PubMed

    Lunardi, Paula; Nardin, Patrícia; Guerra, Maria Cristina; Abib, Renata; Leite, Marina Concli; Gonçalves, Carlos-Alberto

    2013-04-09

    The loss of cholinergic function in the central nervous system contributes significantly to the cognitive decline associated with advanced age and dementias. Huperzine A (HupA) is a selective inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and has been shown to significantly reduce cognitive impairment in animal models of dementia. Based on the importance of astrocytes in physiological and pathological brain activities, we investigated the effect of HupA and tacrine on S100B secretion in primary astrocyte cultures. S100B is an astrocyte-derived protein that has been proposed to be a marker of brain injury. Primary astrocyte cultures were exposed to HupA, tacrine, cholinergic agonists, and S100B secretion was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) at 1 and 24h. HupA, but not tacrine, at 100μM significantly increased S100B secretion in astrocyte cultures. Nicotine (at 100 and 1000μM) was able to stimulate S100B secretion in astrocyte cultures. Our data reinforce the idea that AChE inhibitors, particularly HupA, do not act exclusively on the acetylcholine balance. This effect of HupA could contribute to improve the cognitive deficit observed in patients, which are attributed to cholinergic dysfunction. In addition, for the first time, to our knowledge, these data indicate that S100B secretion can be modulated by nicotinic receptors, in addition to glutamate, dopamine and serotonin receptors. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Acidosis-Induced Dysfunction of Cortical GABAergic Neurons through Astrocyte-Related Excitotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Sudong; Zhu, Yan; Wang, Jin-Hui

    2015-01-01

    Background Acidosis impairs cognitions and behaviors presumably by acidification-induced changes in neuronal metabolism. Cortical GABAergic neurons are vulnerable to pathological factors and their injury leads to brain dysfunction. How acidosis induces GABAergic neuron injury remains elusive. As the glia cells and neurons interact each other, we intend to examine the role of the astrocytes in acidosis-induced GABAergic neuron injury. Results Experiments were done at GABAergic cells and astrocytes in mouse cortical slices. To identify astrocytic involvement in acidosis-induced impairment, we induced the acidification in single GABAergic neuron by infusing proton intracellularly or in both neurons and astrocytes by using proton extracellularly. Compared the effects of intracellular acidification and extracellular acidification on GABAergic neurons, we found that their active intrinsic properties and synaptic outputs appeared more severely impaired in extracellular acidosis than intracellular acidosis. Meanwhile, extracellular acidosis deteriorated glutamate transporter currents on the astrocytes and upregulated excitatory synaptic transmission on the GABAergic neurons. Moreover, the antagonists of glutamate NMDA-/AMPA-receptors partially reverse extracellular acidosis-induced injury in the GABAergic neurons. Conclusion Our studies suggest that acidosis leads to the dysfunction of cortical GABAergic neurons by astrocyte-mediated excitotoxicity, in addition to their metabolic changes as indicated previously. PMID:26474076

  5. Dual patch voltage clamp study of low membrane resistance astrocytes in situ.

    PubMed

    Ma, Baofeng; Xu, Guangjin; Wang, Wei; Enyeart, John J; Zhou, Min

    2014-03-17

    Whole-cell patch clamp recording has been successfully used in identifying the voltage-dependent gating and conductance properties of ion channels in a variety of cells. However, this powerful technique is of limited value in studying low membrane resistance cells, such as astrocytes in situ, because of the inability to control or accurately measure the real amplitude of command voltages. To facilitate the study of ionic conductances of astrocytes, we have developed a dual patch recording method which permits membrane current and membrane potential to be simultaneously recorded from astrocytes in spite of their extraordinarily low membrane resistance. The utility of this technique is demonstrated by measuring the voltage-dependent activation of the inwardly rectifying K+ current abundantly expressed in astrocytes and multiple ionic events associated with astrocytic GABAA receptor activation. This protocol can be performed routinely in the study of astrocytes. This method will be valuable for identifying and characterizing the individual ion channels that orchestrate the electrical activity of low membrane resistance cells.

  6. Astrocytes require insulin-like growth factor I to protect neurons against oxidative injury

    PubMed Central

    Genis, Laura; Dávila, David; Fernandez, Silvia; Pozo-Rodrigálvarez, Andrea; Martínez-Murillo, Ricardo; Torres-Aleman, Ignacio

    2014-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a proposed mechanism in brain aging, making the study of its regulatory processes an important aspect of current neurobiological research. In this regard, the role of the aging regulator insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) in brain responses to oxidative stress remains elusive as both beneficial and detrimental actions have been ascribed to this growth factor. Because astrocytes protect neurons against oxidative injury, we explored whether IGF-I participates in astrocyte neuroprotection and found that blockade of the IGF-I receptor in astrocytes abrogated their rescuing effect on neurons. We found that IGF-I directly protects astrocytes against oxidative stress (H 2O 2). Indeed, in astrocytes but not in neurons, IGF-I decreases the pro-oxidant protein thioredoxin-interacting protein 1 and normalizes the levels of reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, IGF-I cooperates with trophic signals produced by astrocytes in response to H 2O 2 such as stem cell factor (SCF) to protect neurons against oxidative insult. After stroke, a condition associated with brain aging where oxidative injury affects peri-infarcted regions, a simultaneous increase in SCF and IGF-I expression was found in the cortex, suggesting that a similar cooperative response takes place in vivo. Cell-specific modulation by IGF-I of brain responses to oxidative stress may contribute in clarifying the role of IGF-I in brain aging. PMID:24715976

  7. Lycopene ameliorates neuropathic pain by upregulating spinal astrocytic connexin 43 expression.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Fang Fang; Morioka, Norimitsu; Kitamura, Tomoya; Fujii, Shiori; Miyauchi, Kazuki; Nakamura, Yoki; Hisaoka-Nakashima, Kazue; Nakata, Yoshihiro

    2016-06-15

    Peripheral nerve injury upregulates tumor necrosis factor (TNF) expression. In turn, connexin 43 (Cx43) expression in spinal astrocytes is downregulated by TNF. Therefore, restoration of spinal astrocyte Cx43 expression to normal level could lead to the reduction of nerve injury-induced pain. While the non-provitaminic carotenoid lycopene reverses thermal hyperalgesia in mice with painful diabetic neuropathy, the antinociceptive mechanism is not entirely clear. The current study evaluated whether the antinociceptive effect of lycopene is mediated through the modulation of Cx43 expression in spinal astrocytes. The effect of lycopene on Cx43 expression was examined in cultured rat spinal astrocytes. The effect of intrathecal lycopene on Cx43 expression and neuropathic pain were evaluated in mice with partial sciatic nerve ligation (PSNL). Treatment of cultured rat spinal astrocytes with lycopene reversed TNF-induced downregulation of Cx43 protein expression through a transcription-independent mechanism. By contrast, treatment of cultured spinal astrocytes with either pro-vitamin A carotenoid β-carotene or antioxidant N-acetyl cysteine had no effect on TNF-induced downregulation of Cx43 protein expression. In addition, repeated, but not single, intrathecal treatment with lycopene of mice with a partial sciatic nerve ligation significantly prevented not only the downregulation of Cx43 expression in spinal dorsal horn but mechanical hypersensitivity as well. The current findings suggest a significant spinal mechanism that mediates the analgesic effect of lycopene, through the restoration of normal spinal Cx43 expression. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. The mTOR kinase inhibitor rapamycin decreases iNOS mRNA stability in astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Reactive astrocytes are capable of producing a variety of pro-inflammatory mediators and potentially neurotoxic compounds, including nitric oxide (NO). High amounts of NO are synthesized following up-regulation of inducible NO synthase (iNOS). The expression of iNOS is tightly regulated by complex molecular mechanisms, involving both transcriptional and post-transcriptional processes. The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) kinase modulates the activity of some proteins directly involved in post-transcriptional processes of mRNA degradation. mTOR is a serine-threonine kinase that plays an evolutionarily conserved role in the regulation of cell growth, proliferation, survival, and metabolism. It is also a key regulator of intracellular processes in glial cells. However, with respect to iNOS expression, both stimulatory and inhibitory actions involving the mTOR pathway have been described. In this study the effects of mTOR inhibition on iNOS regulation were evaluated in astrocytes. Methods Primary cultures of rat cortical astrocytes were activated with different proinflammatory stimuli, namely a mixture of cytokines (TNFα, IFNγ, and IL-1β) or by LPS plus IFNγ. Rapamycin was used at nM concentrations to block mTOR activity and under these conditions we measured its effects on the iNOS promoter, mRNA and protein levels. Functional experiments to evaluate iNOS activity were also included. Results In this experimental paradigm mTOR activation did not significantly affect astrocyte iNOS activity, but mTOR pathway was involved in the regulation of iNOS expression. Rapamycin did not display any significant effects under basal conditions, on either iNOS activity or its expression. However, the drug significantly increased iNOS mRNA levels after 4 h incubation in presence of pro-inflammatory stimuli. This stimulatory effect was transient, since no differences in either iNOS mRNA or protein levels were detected after 24 h. Interestingly, reduced levels of i

  9. Upregulation of CB2 receptors in reactive astrocytes in canine degenerative myelopathy, a disease model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Trapero, María; Espejo-Porras, Francisco; Rodríguez-Cueto, Carmen; Coates, Joan R.; Pérez-Díaz, Carmen; de Lago, Eva; Fernández-Ruiz, Javier

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT