Parkinson's Disease Stem Cell Treatment

Parkinson's Disease and Stem Cell Therapy

Parkinson Disease and Stem Cell Therapy

Parkinson Disease and Stem Cell Therapy

Parkinson's disease is also called Parkinson's, idiopathic parkinsonism, primary parkinsonism, PD, or paralysis agitans is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system.

Common degeneration results from the death of dopamine containing cells in the area of the midbrain.

The cause of cell-death is currently unknown. In the early stages of the disease, the most obvious symptoms are movement-related which includes shaking, rigidity, slowness of movement and trouble walking.

Later stage symptoms include cognitive and behavioural problems with dementia commonly occurring in the advanced stages. Other symptoms include sensory, sleep and emotional problems.

PD is more common in the elderly with most cases occurring after the age of 50.

 

STEM CELL RESEARCH

 

Parkinson's stem cell research shows promise

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 13:33:00 EST
New stem cell research may point to ways to replace the brain cells that die off in Parkinson’s disease, The Guardian has today reported.

In the research, scientists were able to use human stem cells to create dopamine neurons, which had similar properties to the types of brain cells lost in Parkinson’s disease. When the scientists introduced the new cells into the brains of mice, rats and monkeys with Parkinson’s-like lesions, the animals were able to survive, and in the mice and rats the movement problems normally seen were reversed. In addition, no cancer or uncontrolled cell growth was seen after the cells had been introduced, two safety concerns associated with stem cell therapy.

The results of this study are extremely promising, although more work is required before stem cell-based therapy can be used to treat Parkinson’s disease in humans. That said, the neurons which the researchers have created could have immediate applications in research, such as being used in cell-based models of Parkinson’s disease. This in turn could help find a cure for Parkinson’s disease, such as developing new drugs faster.

Where did the story come from?

The study was carried out by researchers from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre, New York and several other American research institutions. It was funded by the US National Institutes of Health, the US National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the European Commission NeuroStemcell project and several other research funds. The study was published in the peer-reviewed journal, Nature.

This story was covered by The Guardian, which accurately presented the research and included passages and images making it clear that the research was performed in animals. The newspaper also included quotes from Parkinson’s UK and seemed to allow the reader to conclude that stem cell therapy is still some way off, but that this finding is promising for the future.

What kind of research was this?

This was a laboratory-based and animal study. The authors aimed to develop a method that would allow them to create human dopamine neurons (types of brain cells that die in Parkinson’s disease) from human stem cells. They then wanted to test whether these neurons could be used to reverse the signs and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease in animal models.

These sorts of questions can only be answered by laboratory and animal based studies. Only once the technique has been thoroughly tested and evaluated through a significant amount animal research can it be considered for use in small, experimental human trials.

What did the research involve?

The researchers used recent research on dopamine neurons to develop a new a new laboratory-based protocol to create them from stem cells. They then tested the features of the cells that they created to see whether they were similar to the dopamine neurons found within the midbrain (the part of the brain where Parkinson’s disease occurs).

The researchers then wanted to test whether the dopamine neurons they created could survive if introduced into the brains of animals. They also wanted to check that there was no risk of “neural overgrowth” (i.e. a potentially harmful overproduction of new brain cells), and that the cells they introduced did not form the incorrect cell type. The researchers then determined whether the cells they had created in the laboratory could repair the damage seen in animals with Parkinson’s-type lesions. The animal models had been created by treating the animals with specific chemicals, as Parkinson’s disease is not known to occur in any species other than humans.

What were the basic results?

The researchers managed to develop a method that would allow them to create dopamine neurons which were very similar to the dopamine neurons normally found in the midbrain. They found that these neurons could survive when injected into the brains of healthy mice, and did not overgrow (where they continue to grow abnormally) after injection. The dopamine neurons also successfully grafted in the brains of mice and rats treated with chemicals to create models of Parkinson’s disease.

These introduced neurons reversed the movement problems seen in these animals. Finally, as the number of dopamine neurons required in a mouse or rat is much lower than the number needed in a human, the researchers investigated whether the technique could be scaled up to treat two monkeys with Parkinson’s-like lesions. Again, the neurons successfully grafted into the brains of two monkeys.

How did the researchers interpret the results?

The researchers conclude that the “excellent dopamine neuron survival, function and lack of neural overgrowth in the three animal models indicate promise for the development of cell-based therapies in Parkinson’s disease.”


Conclusion

In this study, researchers managed to create dopamine neurons from human stem cells. These neurons were very similar to the neurons found in the midbrain, and therefore were very similar to the neurons lost in Parkinson’s disease. The cells they created were able to survive when introduced into the brains of mice, rats and monkeys with Parkinson’s-like lesions, and reversed the movement problems seen in mice and rats. No problems with neural overgrowth were seen.

The results of this study are extremely promising, but much more work is required before stem cell-based therapy can be used to treat Parkinson’s disease in humans. For example, although the animals regained movement, the complexity of the human brain is greater than that seen in the animals tested. It would need to be determined whether the use of stem cells in this way might negatively affect higher functions such as speech or complex memory.

Also, there other points to consider, such as how closely the chemically induced brain changes the animals underwent represented Parkinson’s disease, and whether the use of stem cells in this way would be safe or effective in the long-term.

However, the neurons that the researchers have created could also have useful and important applications for research in this area. In particular, cell-based models of Parkinson’s disease could now be created and used for tasks such as developing new drugs faster.

The Guardian notes that doctors have already tried transplanting foetal brain tissue into Parkinson's patients in the 1990s with inconsistent or unpleasant results: some patients got better while others experienced runaway involuntary movements. In these cases, the timing of the transplant seemed to be important and it is possible that this new technique, which did not produce “cellular overgrowth”, will in time lead to further transplants that are safer.
Kriks S, Shim J, Piao J et al. Nature, November 6 2011

Stem cell-based therapies in Parkinson's disease: future hope or current treatment option?

2011 May;258(Suppl 2):S346-53.

Loewenbrück K, Storch A.

Source Department of Neurology, Dresden University of Technology, Fetscherstrasse 74, 01307 Dresden, Germany.

Abstract

Parkinson's disease (PD) is one of the most frequent neurodegenerative diseases and represents a major therapeutic challenge because of the so far missing therapeutic means to influence the ongoing loss of dopaminergic innervation to the striatum.

Cell replacement has raised hope to offer the first restorative treatment option. Clinical trials have provided "proof of principle" that transplantation of dopamine-producing neurons into the striatum of PD patients can achieve symptomatic relief given that the striatum is sufficiently re-innervated.

Various cell sources have been tested, including fetal ventral midbrain tissue, embryonic stem cells, fetal and adult neural stem cells and, after a ground-breaking discovery, induced pluripotent stem cells. Although embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells have emerged as the most promising candidates to overcome most of the obstacles to clinical successful cell replacement, each cell source has its unique drawbacks. This review does not only provide a comprehensive overview of the different cellular candidates, including their assets and drawbacks, but also of the various additional issues that need to be addressed in order to convert cellular replacement therapies from an experimental to a clinically relevant therapeutic alternative.

 

PMID: 21437664 [PubMed - in process]

 

Cell transplantation and gene therapy in Parkinson's disease.

2011 Jan-Feb;78(1):126-58. doi: 10.1002/msj.20233.

Wakeman DR, Dodiya HB, Kordower JH.


Abstract

Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder affecting, in part, dopaminergic motor neurons of the ventral midbrain and their terminal projections that course to the striatum. Symptomatic strategies focused on dopamine replacement have proven effective at remediating some motor symptoms during the course of disease but ultimately fail to deliver long-term disease modification and lose effectiveness due to the emergence of side effects. Several strategies have been experimentally tested as alternatives for Parkinson's disease, including direct cell replacement and gene transfer through viral vectors.
Cellular transplantation of dopamine-secreting cells was hypothesized as a substitute for pharmacotherapy to directly provide dopamine, whereas gene therapy has primarily focused on restoration of dopamine synthesis or neuroprotection and restoration of spared host dopaminergic circuitry through trophic factors as a means to enhance sustained controlled dopamine transmission.
This seems now to have been verified in numerous studies in rodents and nonhuman primates, which have shown that grafts of fetal dopamine neurons or gene transfer through viral vector delivery can lead to improvements in biochemical and behavioral indices of dopamine deficiency.
However, in clinical studies, the improvements in parkinsonism have been rather modest and variable and have been plagued by graft-induced dyskinesias. New developments in stem-cell transplantation and induced patient-derived cells have opened the doors for the advancement of cell-based therapeutics.
In addition, viral-vector-derived therapies have been developed preclinically with excellent safety and efficacy profiles, showing promise in clinical trials thus far. Further progress and optimization of these therapies will be necessary to ensure safety and efficacy before widespread clinical use is deemed appropriate.

© 2011 Mount Sinai School of Medicine.
PMID: 21259269 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Protein-based human iPS cells efficiently generate functional dopamine neurons and can treat a rat model of Parkinson disease.

J Clin Invest. 2011 May 16;

Authors: Rhee YH, Ko JY, Chang MY, Yi SH, Kim D, Kim CH, Shim JW, Jo AY, Kim BW, Lee H, Lee SH, Suh W, Park CH, Koh HC, Lee YS, Lanza R, Kim KS, Lee SH

Parkinson disease (PD) involves the selective loss of midbrain dopamine (mDA) neurons and is a possible target disease for stem cell-based therapy. Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) are a potentially unlimited source of patient-specific cells for transplantation. However, it is critical to evaluate the safety of hiPSCs generated by different reprogramming methods.

Here, we compared multiple hiPSC lines derived by virus- and protein-based reprogramming to human ES cells (hESCs). Neuronal precursor cells (NPCs) and dopamine (DA) neurons delivered from lentivirus-based hiPSCs exhibited residual expression of exogenous reprogramming genes, but those cells derived from retrovirus- and protein-based hiPSCs did not.

Furthermore, NPCs derived from virus-based hiPSCs exhibited early senescence and apoptotic cell death during passaging, which was preceded by abrupt induction of p53.

In contrast, NPCs derived from hESCs and protein-based hiPSCs were highly expandable without senescence. DA neurons derived from protein-based hiPSCs exhibited gene expression, physiological, and electrophysiological properties similar to those of mDA neurons. Transplantation of these cells into rats with striatal lesions, a model of PD, significantly rescued motor deficits. These data support the clinical potential of protein-based hiPSCs for personalized cell therapy of PD.

Related Articles Clonal human fetal ventral mesencephalic dopaminergic neuron precursors for cell therapy research. PLoS One. 2012;7(12):e52714 Authors: Ramos-Moreno T, Lendínez JG, Pino-Barrio MJ, Del Arco A, Martínez-Serrano A Abstract A major challenge for further development of drug screening procedures, cell replacement therapies and developmental studies is the identification of expandable human stem cells able to generate the cell types needed. We have previously reported the generation of an immortalized polyclonal neural stem cell (NSC) line derived from the human fetal ventral mesencephalon (hVM1). This line has been biochemically, genetically, immunocytochemically and electrophysiologically characterized to document its usefulness as a model system for the generation of A9 dopaminergic neurons (DAn). Long-term in vivo transplantation studies in parkinsonian rats showed that the grafts do not mature evenly. We reasoned that diverse clones in the hVM1 line might have different abilities to differentiate. In the present study, we have analyzed 9 hVM1 clones selected on the basis of their TH generation potential and, based on the number of v-myc copies, v-myc down-regulation after in vitro differentiation, in vivo cell cycle exit, TH⁺ neuron generation and expression of a neuronal mature marker (hNSE), we selected two clones for further in vivo PD cell replacement studies. The conclusion is that homogeneity and clonality of characterized NSCs allow transplantation of cells with controlled properties, which should help in the design of long-term in vivo experiments. PMID: 23300748 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles [The role of neurotrophic factors in regeneration of the nervous system]. Neurol Neurochir Pol. 2012 Nov-Dec;46(6):579-90 Authors: Machaliński B, Lażewski-Banaszak P, Dąbkowska E, Paczkowska E, Gołąb-Janowska M, Nowacki P Abstract Neurotrophic factors regulate survival, development, and function of nervous tissue. They act via two different classes of receptors and activation of various signaling pathways in the target cells. Illumination of their physiological role in the maintenance of central nervous system homeostasis as well as regeneration of damaged tissue have ignited expectations to heal neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic late-ral sclerosis and Parkinson disease. Advances in pharmaco-therapy, gene therapy, and stem cell biology have enabled development of novel therapies with application of regenerating cell transplantation. In the foreseeable future, it may lead to the establishment of safe and effective ways of treatment of these severe and currently incurable diseases. PMID: 23319226 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Wnt5a cooperates with canonical Wnts to generate midbrain dopaminergic neurons in vivo and in stem cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Feb 12;110(7):E602-10 Authors: Andersson ER, Saltó C, Villaescusa JC, Cajanek L, Yang S, Bryjova L, Nagy II, Vainio SJ, Ramirez C, Bryja V, Arenas E Abstract Wnts are a family of secreted proteins that regulate multiple steps of neural development and stem cell differentiation. Two of them, Wnt1 and Wnt5a, activate distinct branches of Wnt signaling and individually regulate different aspects of midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neuron development. However, several of their functions and interactions remain to be elucidated. Here, we report that loss of Wnt1 results in loss of Lmx1a and Ngn2 expression, as well as agenesis of DA neurons in the midbrain floor plate. Remarkably, a few ectopic DA neurons still emerge in the basal plate of Wnt1(-/-) mice, where Lmx1a is ectopically expressed. These results indicate that Wnt1 orchestrates DA specification and neurogenesis in vivo. Analysis of Wnt1(-/-);Wnt5a(-/-) mice revealed a greater loss of Nurr1(+) cells and DA neurons than in single mutants, indicating that Wnt1 and Wnt5a interact genetically and cooperate to promote midbrain DA neuron development in vivo. Our results unravel a functional interaction between Wnt1 and Wnt5a resulting in enhanced DA neurogenesis. Taking advantage of these findings, we have developed an application of Wnts to improve the generation of midbrain DA neurons from neural and embryonic stem cells. We thus show that coordinated Wnt actions promote DA neuron development in vivo and in stem cells and suggest that coordinated Wnt administration can be used to improve DA differentiation of stem cells and the development of stem cell-based therapies for Parkinson's disease. PMID: 23324743 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Dopaminergic cells, derived from a high efficiency differentiation protocol from umbilical cord derived mesenchymal stem cells, alleviate symptoms in a Parkinson's disease rodent model. Cell Biol Int. 2013 Feb;37(2):167-80 Authors: Shetty P, Thakur AM, Viswanathan C Abstract Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) could be an alternative to foetal cells in the treatment of several neurodegenerative diseases, especially Parkinson's disease (PD). We have previously demonstrated the functional efficacy of the undifferentiated bone marrow MSCs (BMMSCs) cultured in a xenofree conditions in PD animal models. We now demonstrate isolation of MSCs from the umbilical cord matrix tissue and assess their safety and efficacy to improve Parkinsonian symptoms in an in vivo animal model. The efficacy of MSCs from BM and umbilical cord in the PD animal mode has also been studied, and more importantly the efficacy of using differentiated UCMSC (D-UCMSCs) to dopaminergic phenotype. Phenotypically, UCMSCs expressed higher levels of SSEA4 compared to BMMSCs. Analysis of differentiated cells showed that D-UCMSCs expressed significant levels of Tyrosine Hydroxyalse and Nurr1 compared to D-BMMSCs. The in vivo efficacy of the differentiated and undifferentiated cell types in the Parkinsonian rats showed that D-UCMSCs improved the symptoms throughout a year of study. Differentiated cell types are potentially better for clinical use than the undifferentiated type, provided they are made available at the site of action in adequate numbers. MSCs are less immunogenic and immunomodulatory, which opens up the further possibility of using these cells in allogeneic settings. This could be a novel cell therapy application, especially when getting autochthonous cells is difficult. PMID: 23339105 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Hypoxia promotes dopaminergic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells and shows benefits for transplantation in a rat model of Parkinson's disease. PLoS One. 2013;8(1):e54296 Authors: Wang Y, Yang J, Li H, Wang X, Zhu L, Fan M, Wang X Abstract Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent cells capable of differentiating into dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons, which is one of the major cell types damaged in Parkinson's disease (PD). For this reason, MSCs are considered a potential cell source for PD therapy. It has been proved that hypoxia is involved in the proliferation and differentiation of stem cells. In this study, we investigated the effect of hypoxia on MSC proliferation and DAergic neuronal differentiation. Our results demonstrate that 3% O₂ treatment can enhance rat MSC proliferation by upregulation of phosphorylated p38 MAPK and subsequent nuclear translocation of hypoxia inducible factor (HIF)-1α. During neural differentiation, 3% O₂ treatment increases the expression of HIF-1α, phosphorylated ERK and p38 MAPK. These changes are followed by promotion of neurosphere formation and further DAergic neuronal differentiation. Furthermore, we explored the physiological function of hypoxia-induced DAergic neurons from human fetal MSCs by transplanting them into parkinsonian rats. Grafts induced with hypoxia display more survival of DAergic neurons and greater amelioration of behavioral impairments. Altogether, these results suggest that hypoxia can promote MSC proliferation and DAergic neuronal differentiation, and benefit for intrastriatal transplantation. Therefore, this study may provide new perspectives in application of MSCs to clinical PD therapy. PMID: 23342124 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Using human pluripotent stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons to evaluate candidate Parkinson's disease therapeutic agents in MPP+ and rotenone models. J Biomol Screen. 2013 Jun;18(5):522-33 Authors: Peng J, Liu Q, Rao MS, Zeng X Abstract To begin to develop a high-throughput assay system to evaluate potential small-molecule therapy for Parkinson's disease (PD), we have performed a low-throughput assay with a small number of compounds using human pluripotent stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons. We first evaluated the role of 44 compounds known to work in rodent systems in a 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+)) assay in a 96-well format using the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide assay as a readout for neuroprotection. Glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor was used as a positive control because of its well-documented neuroprotective effect on dopaminergic neurons, and two concentrations of each drug were tested. Of 44 compounds screened, 16 showed a neuroprotective effect at one or both dosages tested. A dose-response curve of a subset of the 16 positives was established in the MPP(+) model. In addition, we validated neuroprotective effects of these compounds in a rotenone-induced dopaminergic neuronal cell death, another established model for PD. Our human primary dopaminergic neuron-based assays provide a platform for rapid screening and/or validation of potential neuroprotective agents in PD treatment using patient-specific cells and show the importance of using human cells for such assays. PMID: 23364514 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Therapeutic application of stem cell technology toward the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Biol Pharm Bull. 2013;36(2):171-5 Authors: Nishimura K, Takahashi J Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD) is one of the candidate diseases for cell transplantation therapy, since successful clinical experiments have accumulated using human fetal tissue grafting for PD patients. Although some grafted PD patients have shown drastic improvements, several issues still remain with regard to using human fetal tissue. This review highlights the recent advances in stem cell technology toward clinical applications using human pluripotent stem cells. In particular, pluripotent stem cells, such as embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), are the focus as a source of cell transplantation therapy that can be used instead of human fetal tissues. Additionally, efficient methods for stem cell maintenance and differentiation have been developed and improved toward the clinical transition. These advances in the basic technologies have helped accelerate the realization of regenerative medicine. We also review the current topics regarding disease modeling and drug screening using iPSC technology. Finally, we also describe the future prospects of these stem cell research fields toward clinical application. PMID: 23370347 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Neural stem cell-based treatment for neurodegenerative diseases. Neuropathology. 2013 Oct;33(5):491-504 Authors: Kim SU, Lee HJ, Kim YB Abstract Human neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) are caused by a loss of neurons and glia in the brain or spinal cord. Neurons and glial cells have successfully been generated from stem cells such as embryonic stem cells (ESCs), mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and neural stem cells (NSCs), and stem cell-based cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases have been developed. A recent advance in generation of a new class of pluripotent stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), derived from patients' own skin fibroblasts, opens doors for a totally new field of personalized medicine. Transplantation of NSCs, neurons or glia generated from stem cells in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases, including PD, HD, ALS and AD, demonstrates clinical improvement and also life extension of these animals. Additional therapeutic benefits in these animals can be provided by stem cell-mediated gene transfer of therapeutic genes such as neurotrophic factors and enzymes. Although further research is still needed, cell and gene therapy based on stem cells, particularly using neurons and glia derived from iPSCs, ESCs or NSCs, will become a routine treatment for patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases and also stroke and spinal cord injury. PMID: 23384285 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Cell therapy for Parkinson's disease: what next? Mov Disord. 2013 Jan;28(1):110-5 Authors: Bjorklund A, Kordower JH Abstract The idea to use transplants of dopamine-producing cells to substitute for the lost midbrain dopamine neurons in Parkinson's disease (PD) goes back to the 1970s. In this review we give an overview of the history of cell transplantation in animal models of PD, and summarize the experience gained from the open-label and placebo-controlled clinical trials performed so far using intrastriatal transplants of human fetal dopamine neuroblasts. Further development of this therapeutic approach face numerous challenges, for example in the development of protocols that allow generation of fully functional and safe midbrain dopamine neurons from stem cells. Based on recent promising advancements, efforts are now being made to develop standardized and efficient protocols, and adapt these protocols to good laboratory practice (GLP)/good manufacturing practice (GMP) conditions, to move this technology closer to clinical translation. PMID: 23390097 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Developing dopaminergic cell therapy for Parkinson's disease--give up or move forward? Mov Disord. 2013 Mar;28(3):268-73 Authors: Lindvall O Abstract Despite 3 decades of basic and clinical studies, there is still no dopaminergic cell therapy for Parkinson's disease. Several arguments have been put forward why this approach, so far tested with transplantation of human fetal mesencephalic dopamine-rich tissue, will never be of clinical use and should be abandoned: (1) Lack of efficacy in 2 sham surgery-controlled trials; (2) occurrence of troublesome off-medication dyskinesias in a subgroup of grafted patients; (3) disease process destroys grafted neurons; and (4) non-motor symptoms will not be influenced by intrastriatal dopaminergic grafts. Here, the author argues that, based on recent scientific advancements, the development of a dopaminergic cell therapy for Parkinson's disease should continue. Factors influencing the outcome after transplantation have now been identified, and dopaminergic neurons can be generated in large numbers from stem cells. Mechanisms of graft-induced dyskinesias are much better understood, and patients with well functioning grafts can exhibit long-term motor recovery of therapeutic value even in the presence of non-motor symptoms. PMID: 23401015 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Recovery of behavioral symptoms in hemi-parkinsonian rhesus monkeys through combined gene and stem cell therapy. Cytotherapy. 2013 Apr;15(4):467-80 Authors: Zhou Y, Sun M, Li H, Yan M, He Z, Wang W, Wang W, Lu S Abstract BACKGROUND AIMS: The use of adipose mesenchymal stromal cells (ASCs) in cellular and genic therapy has attracted considerable attention as a possible treatment for neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson disease. However, the effects of gene therapy combined with intracerebral cell transplantation have not been well defined. Recent studies have demonstrated the respective roles of LIM homeobox transcription factor 1, alpha (LMX1A) and Neurturin (NTN) in the commitment of embryonic stem cells (ESCs) to a midbrain dopaminergic neuronal fate and the commitment of mesenchymal stromal cells to cells supporting the nutrition and protection of neurons. METHODS: We investigated a novel in vitro neuronal differentiation strategy with the use of LMX1A and Neurturin. We were able to elicit a neural phenotype regarding cell morphology, specific gene/protein expression and physiological function. Neuronal-primed ASCs derived from rhesus monkey (rASCs) combined with adenovirus containing NTN and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) (Ad-NTN-TH) were implanted into the striatum and substantia nigra of methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-lesioned hemi-parkinsonian rhesus monkeys. Monkeys were monitored with the use of behavioral tests and health measures until the fourth month after implantation. RESULTS: The differentiated cells transcribed and expressed a variety of dopaminergic neuron-specific genes involved in the SHH/LMX1A pathway. Single-photon emission computed tomography analysis and postmortem analysis revealed that the grafting of rASCs combined with Ad-NTN-TH had neuroprotective effects compared with Ad-NTN-TH or rASCs alone. Behavioral measures demonstrated autograft survival and symptom amelioration. CONCLUSIONS: These findings may lead to cellular sources for autologous transplantation of Parkinson disease. Combined transplantation of Ad-NTN-TH and induced rASCs expressing LMX1A and NTN may be a better therapy candidate for the treatment of Parkinson disease. PMID: 23403361 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The transcriptomic response of mixed neuron-glial cell cultures to 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin d3 includes genes limiting the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. J Alzheimers Dis. 2013;35(3):553-64 Authors: Nissou MF, Brocard J, El Atifi M, Guttin A, Andrieux A, Berger F, Issartel JP, Wion D Abstract Seasonal or chronic vitamin D deficiency and/or insufficiency is highly prevalent in the human population. Receptors for 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3, the hormonal metabolite of vitamin D, are found throughout the brain. To provide further information on the role of this hormone on brain function, we analyzed the transcriptomic profiles of mixed neuron-glial cell cultures in response to 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3. 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 treatment increases the mRNA levels of 27 genes by at least 1.9 fold. Among them, 17 genes were related to neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases, or brain morphogenesis. Notably, 10 of these genes encode proteins potentially limiting the progression of Alzheimer's disease. These data provide support for a role of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 in brain disease prevention. The possible consequences of circannual or chronic vitamin D insufficiencies on a tissue with a low regenerative potential such as the brain should be considered. PMID: 23455988 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Mesenchymal stem cells secretome: a new paradigm for central nervous system regeneration? Cell Mol Life Sci. 2013 Oct;70(20):3871-82 Authors: Teixeira FG, Carvalho MM, Sousa N, Salgado AJ Abstract The low regeneration potential of the central nervous system (CNS) represents a challenge for the development of new therapeutic strategies. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have been proposed as a possible therapeutic tool for CNS disorders. In addition to their differentiation potential, it is well accepted nowadays that their beneficial actions can also be mediated by their secretome. Indeed, it was already demonstrated, both in vitro and in vivo, that MSCs are able to secrete a broad range of neuroregulatory factors that promote an increase in neurogenesis, inhibition of apoptosis and glial scar formation, immunomodulation, angiogenesis, neuronal and glial cell survival, as well as relevant neuroprotective actions on different pathophysiological contexts. Considering their protective action in lesioned sites, MSCs' secretome might also improve the integration of local progenitor cells in neuroregeneration processes, opening a door for their future use as therapeutical strategies in human clinical trials. Thus, in this review we analyze the current understanding of MSCs secretome as a new paradigm for the treatment of CNS neurodegenerative diseases. PMID: 23456256 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Genetic correction of a LRRK2 mutation in human iPSCs links parkinsonian neurodegeneration to ERK-dependent changes in gene expression. Cell Stem Cell. 2013 Mar 7;12(3):354-67 Authors: Reinhardt P, Schmid B, Burbulla LF, Schöndorf DC, Wagner L, Glatza M, Höing S, Hargus G, Heck SA, Dhingra A, Wu G, Müller S, Brockmann K, Kluba T, Maisel M, Krüger R, Berg D, Tsytsyura Y, Thiel CS, Psathaki OE, Klingauf J, Kuhlmann T, Klewin M, Müller H, Gasser T, Schöler HR, Sterneckert J Abstract The LRRK2 mutation G2019S is the most common genetic cause of Parkinson's disease (PD). To better understand the link between mutant LRRK2 and PD pathology, we derived induced pluripotent stem cells from PD patients harboring LRRK2 G2019S and then specifically corrected the mutant LRRK2 allele. We demonstrate that gene correction resulted in phenotypic rescue in differentiated neurons and uncovered expression changes associated with LRRK2 G2019S. We found that LRRK2 G2019S induced dysregulation of CPNE8, MAP7, UHRF2, ANXA1, and CADPS2. Knockdown experiments demonstrated that four of these genes contribute to dopaminergic neurodegeneration. LRRK2 G2019S induced increased extracellular-signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK) phosphorylation. Transcriptional dysregulation of CADPS2, CPNE8, and UHRF2 was dependent on ERK activity. We show that multiple PD-associated phenotypes were ameliorated by inhibition of ERK. Therefore, our results provide mechanistic insight into the pathogenesis induced by mutant LRRK2 and pointers for the development of potential new therapeutics. PMID: 23472874 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Deriving dopaminergic neurons for clinical use. A practical approach. Sci Rep. 2013;3:1463 Authors: Gonzalez R, Garitaonandia I, Abramihina T, Wambua GK, Ostrowska A, Brock M, Noskov A, Boscolo FS, Craw JS, Laurent LC, Snyder EY, Semechkin RA Abstract New small molecules that regulate the step-wise differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into dopaminergic neurons have been identified. The steroid, guggulsterone, was found to be the most effective inducer of neural stem cells into dopaminergic neurons. These neurons are extensively characterized and shown to be functional. We believe this new approach offers a practical route to creating neurons of sufficient quality to be used to treat Parkinson's disease patients. PMID: 23492920 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Characterization of the secretome of human tooth germ stem cells (hTGSCs) reveals neuro-protection by fine-tuning micro-environment. Brain Behav Immun. 2013 Aug;32:122-30 Authors: Yalvaç ME, Yarat A, Mercan D, Rizvanov AA, Palotás A, Şahin F Abstract Bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) demonstrate neuro-protective effects in several disease models. By producing growth-factors, cytokines and chemokines, they promote survival of neurons in damaged brain areas. Alternative MSC sources, such as human tooth germ stem cells (hTGSCs), have been investigated for their neuro-protective properties. They ameliorate effects of neuro-toxic agents by paracrine mechanisms, however these secreted bio-active molecules are not yet characterized. Therefore, the current study aimed to provide a detailed analysis of the secretome of hTGSCs. Brain cells were exposed to various toxic materials, including Alzheimer's β-amyloid peptide (β-AP) and 6-hydroxy-dopamine (6-OHDA). When co-cultured with hTGSCs, the activity of a number of anti-oxidant enzymes (catalase, glutathione-s-transferase, glutathione-peroxidase, superoxide-dismutase) was increased and neuronal death/apoptosis was subsequently reduced. The composition of the secreted bio-active materials is influenced by various pre-existing factors such as oxygen and glucose deprivation and the age of cells (passage number). This report reveals for the first time that the neuro-protective secretome of hTGSCs and the micro-environment of cells have a mutual and dynamic impact on one another. PMID: 23517709 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Transplantation of mouse CGR8 embryonic stem cells producing GDNF and TH protects against 6-hydroxydopamine neurotoxicity in the rat. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2013 Jul;45(7):1265-73 Authors: Liu TW, Ma ZG, Zhou Y, Xie JX Abstract Embryonic stem cells (ESCs)-based therapies have been increasingly recognized as a potential tool to replace or support cells and their function damaged by the neurodegenerative process that underlies Parkinson's disease (PD). In this study, we implanted engineered mouse embryonic stem (ES) CGR8 cells, which stably co-express glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), into striatum (Str) or both Str and substantia nigra (SN) of parkinsonian rats lesioned by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). We found that cell transplantation into Str or both Str and SN rescued behavioral abnormalities and striatal DA depletion associated with 6-OHDA lesion. Our findings suggested that the profound functional impairment in nigrostriatal circuitry could be at least partially restored by ESCs-based expression of TH and GDNF, which may be developed into a useful tool for PD therapy. PMID: 23535049 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Mesenchymal stem cells and neuroregeneration in Parkinson's disease. Exp Neurol. 2013 Sep;247:25-38 Authors: Glavaski-Joksimovic A, Bohn MC Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD) is a prevalent neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive and extensive loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and their terminals in the striatum, which results in debilitating movement disorders. This devastating disease affects over 1 million individuals in the United States and is increasing in incidence worldwide. Currently available pharmacological and surgical therapies ameliorate clinical symptoms in the early stages of disease, but they cannot stop or reverse degeneration of DA neurons. Stem cell therapies have come to the forefront of the PD research field as promising regenerative therapies. The majority of preclinical stem cell studies in experimental models of PD are focused on the idea that stem cell-derived DA neurons could be developed for replacement of diseased neurons. Alternatively, our studies and the studies from other groups suggest that stem cells also have the potential to protect and stimulate regeneration of compromised DA neurons. This review is focused on strategies based on the therapeutic potential for PD of the neurotrophic and neuroregenerative properties of a subclass of stem cells, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). PMID: 23542820 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Is it time to consider photobiomodulation as a drug equivalent? Photomed Laser Surg. 2013 May;31(5):189-91 Authors: Karu T PMID: 23600376 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The parkinson's disease-associated LRRK2 mutation R1441G inhibits neuronal differentiation of neural stem cells. Stem Cells Dev. 2013 Sep 15;22(18):2487-96 Authors: Bahnassawy L, Nicklas S, Palm T, Menzl I, Birzele F, Gillardon F, Schwamborn JC Abstract Mutations in the leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) gene cause familial as well as sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD) that is characterized by an age-dependent degeneration of dopaminergic neurons. LRRK2 is strongly expressed in neural stem cells (NSCs), but still the exact molecular function of LRRK2 in these cells remains unknown. By performing a systemic analysis of the gene expression profile of LRRK2-deficient NSCs, we found that the expression of several PD-associated genes, such as oxidation and reduction in mitochondria, are deregulated on LRRK2 absence. Our data, indeed, indicate that LRRK2 regulates the level of cellular oxidative stress and thereby influences the survival of NSCs. Furthermore, the lack of LRRK2 leads to an up-regulation of neuronal differentiation-inducing processes, including the Let-7a pathway. On the other hand, the constitutive mutant of LRRK2(R1441G), known to cause PD, leads to down-regulation of the same pathway. In agreement with the function of Let-7a during neuronal differentiation, LRRK2-deficient NSCs differentiate faster than wild-type cells, while LRRK2(R1441G)-expressing NSCs show impaired neuronal differentiation. These results might help better characterize the molecular mechanisms underlying the role of LRRK2 in NSCs and would further improve potential cell-replacement strategies as well as drug discovery approaches. PMID: 23600457 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Midbrain dopaminergic neurons: a review of the molecular circuitry that regulates their development. Dev Biol. 2013 Jul 15;379(2):123-38 Authors: Hegarty SV, Sullivan AM, O'Keeffe GW Abstract Dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the ventral midbrain (VM) play vital roles in the regulation of voluntary movement, emotion and reward. They are divided into the A8, A9 and A10 subgroups. The development of the A9 group of DA neurons is an area of intense investigation to aid the generation of these neurons from stem cell sources for cell transplantation approaches to Parkinson's disease (PD). This review discusses the molecular processes that are involved in the identity, specification, maturation, target innervation and survival of VM DA neurons during development. The complex molecular interactions of a number of genetic pathways are outlined, as well as recent advances in the mechanisms that regulate subset identity within the VM DA neuronal pool. A thorough understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the development of VM DA neurons will greatly facilitate the use of cell replacement therapy for the treatment of PD. PMID: 23603197 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Conditioned medium from human amniotic epithelial cells may induce the differentiation of human umbilical cord blood mesenchymal stem cells into dopaminergic neuron-like cells. J Neurosci Res. 2013 Jul;91(7):978-86 Authors: Yang S, Sun HM, Yan JH, Xue H, Wu B, Dong F, Li WS, Ji FQ, Zhou DS Abstract Dopaminergic (DA) neuron therapy has been established as a new clinical tool for treating Parkinson's disease (PD). Prior to cell transplantation, there are two primary issues that must be resolved: one is the appropriate seed cell origin, and the other is the efficient inducing technique. In the present study, human umbilical cord blood-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hUCB-MSCs) were used as the available seed cells, and conditioned medium from human amniotic epithelial cells (ACM) was used as the inducing reagent. Results showed that the proportion of DA neuron-like cells from hUCB-MSCs was significantly increased after cultured in ACM, suggested by the upregulation of DAT, TH, Nurr1, and Pitx3. To identify the process by which ACM induces DA neuron differentiation, we pretreated hUCB-MSCs with k252a, the Trk receptor inhibitor of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and nerve growth factor (NGF), and found that the proportion of DA neuron-like cells was significantly decreased compared with ACM-treated hUCB-MSCs, suggesting that NGF and BDNF in ACM were involved in the differentiation process. However, we could not rule out the involvement of other unidentified factors in the ACM, because ACM + k252a treatment does not fully block DA neuron-like cell differentiation compared with control. The transplantation of ACM-induced hUCB-MSCs could ameliorate behavioral deficits in PD rats, which may be associated with the survival of engrafted DA neuron-like cells. In conclusion, we propose that hUCB-MSCs are a good source of DA neuron-like cells and that ACM is a potential inducer to obtain DA neuron-like cells from hUCB-MSCs in vitro for an ethical and legal cell therapy for PD. PMID: 23633297 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Labeling and tracking of human mesenchymal stem cells using near-infrared technology. Methods Mol Biol. 2013;1052:13-28 Authors: Armentero MT, Bossolasco P, Cova L Abstract The recently developed near-infrared (NIR) light imaging technology combines low background noise with deep tissue penetration and readily allows imaging and tracking of NIR-labeled cells, following transplantation in small animal model of diseases. The real-time and longitudinal detection of grafted cells in vivo, as well as their rapid ex vivo localization, may further clarify graft interactions with the surrounding, in target and nontarget organs throughout the body, over time. The present chapter describes a protocol for (1) the efficient labeling of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) using a membrane intercalating dye, emitting in the NIR 815 nm spectrum; (2) the stereotaxic transplantation of NIR 815-hMSCs in rodent model of Parkinson's disease; and (3) the longitudinal in vivo detection of the grafted cells and the subsequent ex vivo imaging in selected tissues. PMID: 23640251 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Are human dental papilla-derived stem cell and human brain-derived neural stem cell transplantations suitable for treatment of Parkinson's disease? Neural Regen Res. 2013 May 5;8(13):1190-200 Authors: Yoon HH, Min J, Shin N, Kim YH, Kim JM, Hwang YS, Suh JK, Hwang O, Jeon SR Abstract Transplantation of neural stem cells has been reported as a possible approach for replacing impaired dopaminergic neurons. In this study, we tested the efficacy of early-stage human dental papilla-derived stem cells and human brain-derived neural stem cells in rat models of 6-hydroxydopamine-induced Parkinson's disease. Rats received a unilateral injection of 6-hydroxydopamine into right medial forebrain bundle, followed 3 weeks later by injections of PBS, early-stage human dental papilla-derived stem cells, or human brain-derived neural stem cells into the ipsilateral striatum. All of the rats in the human dental papilla-derived stem cell group died from tumor formation at around 2 weeks following cell transplantation. Postmortem examinations revealed homogeneous malignant tumors in the striatum of the human dental papilla-derived stem cell group. Stepping tests revealed that human brain-derived neural stem cell transplantation did not improve motor dysfunction. In apomorphine-induced rotation tests, neither the human brain-derived neural stem cell group nor the control groups (PBS injection) demonstrated significant changes. Glucose metabolism in the lesioned side of striatum was reduced by human brain-derived neural stem cell transplantation. [(18)F]-FP-CIT PET scans in the striatum did not demonstrate a significant increase in the human brain-derived neural stem cell group. Tyrosine hydroxylase (dopaminergic neuronal marker) staining and G protein-activated inward rectifier potassium channel 2 (A9 dopaminergic neuronal marker) were positive in the lesioned side of striatum in the human brain-derived neural stem cell group. The use of early-stage human dental papilla-derived stem cells confirmed its tendency to form tumors. Human brain-derived neural stem cells could be partially differentiated into dopaminergic neurons, but they did not secrete dopamine. PMID: 25206413 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Differences between Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases and their role for prioritization of stem cell-based treatments. Curr Mol Med. 2013 Jun;13(5):777-91 Authors: Hug K, Hermerén G Abstract The problems of allocation of scarce resources and priority setting in health care have so far not been much studied in the context of stem cell-based therapeutic applications. If and when competitive cost effective stem cell-based therapies are available, the problem of priority setting - to whom should stem cellbased therapies be offered and on what grounds - is discussed in this article using the examples of Parkinson's Disease (PD) and Huntington's Disease (HD). The aim of this paper is to examine the presently known differences between PD and HD and analyze the role of these differences for setting priorities of stem cell-based therapeutic applications to treat these diseases. To achieve this aim, we (1) present the theoretical framework used in the analysis; (2) compare PD and HD in terms of health related and non-health related consequences of these diseases for patients, their relatives and third parties; (3) analyze the ethical relevance of observed differences for priority setting given different values and variables; (4) compare PD and HD in terms of social justice related consequences of stem cell-based therapies; and (5) analyze the ethical relevance of these differences for priority setting given different values and variables. We argue that the steps of analysis applied in this paper could be helpful when setting priorities among treatments of other diseases with similar differences as those between PD and HD. PMID: 23642059 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles In vivo visualization and monitoring of viable neural stem cells using noninvasive bioluminescence imaging in the 6-hydroxydopamine-induced mouse model of Parkinson disease. Mol Imaging. 2013 Jun 1;12(4):224-34 Authors: Im HJ, Hwang do W, Lee HK, Jang J, Lee S, Youn H, Jin Y, Kim SU, Kim EE, Kim YS, Lee DS Abstract Transplantation of neural stem cells (NSCs) has been proposed as a treatment for Parkinson disease (PD). The aim of this study was to monitor the viability of transplanted NSCs expressing the enhanced luciferase gene in a mouse model of PD in vivo. The PD animal model was induced by unilateral injection of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). The behavioral test using apomorphine-induced rotation and positron emission tomography with [18F]N-(3-fluoropropyl)-2'-carbomethoxy-3'-(4-iodophenyl)nortropane ([18F]FP-CIT) were conducted. HB1.F3 cells transduced with an enhanced firefly luciferase retroviral vector (F3-effLuc cells) were transplanted into the right striatum. In vivo bioluminescence imaging was repeated for 2 weeks. Four weeks after transplantation, [18F]FP-CIT PET and the rotation test were repeated. All 6-OHDA-injected mice showed markedly decreased [18F]FP-CIT uptake in the right striatum. Transplanted F3-effLuc cells were visualized on the right side of the brain in all mice by bioluminescence imaging. The bioluminescence intensity of the transplanted F3-effLuc cells gradually decreased until it was undetectable by 10 days. The behavioral test showed that stem cell transplantation attenuated the motor symptoms of PD. No significant change was found in [18F]FP-CIT imaging after cell transplantation. We successfully established an in vivo bioluminescence imaging system for the detection of transplanted NSCs in a mouse model of PD. NSC transplantation induced behavioral improvement in PD model mice. PMID: 23651500 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Scientific and ethical issues related to stem cell research and interventions in neurodegenerative disorders of the brain. Prog Neurobiol. 2013 Nov;110:63-73 Authors: Barker RA, de Beaufort I Abstract Should patients with Parkinson's disease participate in research involving stem cell treatments? Are induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) the ethical solution to the moral issues regarding embryonic stem cells? How can we adapt trial designs to best assess small numbers of patients in receipt of invasive experimental therapies? Over the last 20 years there has been a revolution in our ability to make stem cells from different sources and use them for therapeutic gain in disorders of the brain. These cells, which are defined by their capacity to proliferate indefinitely as well as differentiate into selective phenotypic cell types, are viewed as being especially attractive for studying disease processes and for grafting in patients with chronic incurable neurodegenerative disorders of the CNS such as Parkinson's disease (PD). In this review we briefly discuss and summarise where our understanding of stem cell biology has taken us relative to the clinic and patients, before dealing with some of the major ethical issues that work of this nature generates. This includes issues to do with the source of the cells, their ownership and exploitation along with questions about patient recruitment, consent and trial design when they translate to the clinic for therapeutic use. PMID: 23665410 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Improved cell therapy protocols for Parkinson's disease based on differentiation efficiency and safety of hESC-, hiPSC-, and non-human primate iPSC-derived dopaminergic neurons. Stem Cells. 2013 Aug;31(8):1548-62 Authors: Sundberg M, Bogetofte H, Lawson T, Jansson J, Smith G, Astradsson A, Moore M, Osborn T, Cooper O, Spealman R, Hallett P, Isacson O Abstract The main motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease are due to the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral midbrain (VM). For the future treatment of Parkinson's disease with cell transplantation it is important to develop efficient differentiation methods for production of human iPSCs and hESCs-derived midbrain-type DA neurons. Here we describe an efficient differentiation and sorting strategy for DA neurons from both human ES/iPS cells and non-human primate iPSCs. The use of non-human primate iPSCs for neuronal differentiation and autologous transplantation is important for preclinical evaluation of safety and efficacy of stem cell-derived DA neurons. The aim of this study was to improve the safety of human- and non-human primate iPSC (PiPSC)-derived DA neurons. According to our results, NCAM(+) /CD29(low) sorting enriched VM DA neurons from pluripotent stem cell-derived neural cell populations. NCAM(+) /CD29(low) DA neurons were positive for FOXA2/TH and EN1/TH and this cell population had increased expression levels of FOXA2, LMX1A, TH, GIRK2, PITX3, EN1, NURR1 mRNA compared to unsorted neural cell populations. PiPSC-derived NCAM(+) /CD29(low) DA neurons were able to restore motor function of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesioned rats 16 weeks after transplantation. The transplanted sorted cells also integrated in the rodent brain tissue, with robust TH+/hNCAM+ neuritic innervation of the host striatum. One year after autologous transplantation, the primate iPSC-derived neural cells survived in the striatum of one primate without any immunosuppression. These neural cell grafts contained FOXA2/TH-positive neurons in the graft site. This is an important proof of concept for the feasibility and safety of iPSC-derived cell transplantation therapies in the future. PMID: 23666606 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Challenges for taking primary and stem cells into clinical neurotransplantation trials for neurodegenerative disease. Neurobiol Dis. 2014 Jan;61:79-89 Authors: Dunnett SB, Rosser AE Abstract We review the first generations of clinical trials of novel cell therapies applied to a range of neurodegenerative diseases in the context of mechanisms of functional efficacy. This in turn helps to determine the best strategies to be adopted and the potential chances for success in developing new cell therapies to clinical application in different conditions. We then consider the scientific, technical, ethical, regulatory and logistic issues to be resolved in translating effective laboratory cell-based protocols to patients in clinical trials. We draw optimistic conclusions about the likelihood of success in developing radical new approaches to a range of devastating, and currently untreatable, neurodegenerative conditions, but caution that the problems are complex and the solutions are likely to be slow and costly to achieve in order to overcome significant ethical and regulatory as well as scientific challenges. PMID: 23688854 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Conversion of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells in Wharton's jelly to dopamine neurons mediated by the Lmx1a and neurturin in vitro: potential therapeutic application for Parkinson's disease in a rhesus monkey model. PLoS One. 2013;8(5):e64000 Authors: Yan M, Sun M, Zhou Y, Wang W, He Z, Tang D, Lu S, Wang X, Li S, Wang W, Li H Abstract hUC-MSCs hold great promise in vitro neuronal differentiation and therapy for neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's disease. Recent studies provided that Lmx1α play an important role in the midbrain dopamine cells differentiation. Neurturin is desired candidate gene for providing a neuroprotective to DA neurons. In this study, we investigated a novel neuronal differentiation strategy in vitro with Lmx1α and NTN. We transferred these two genes to hUC-MSCs by recombinant adenovirus combined with Lmx1α regulatory factor and other inductor to improve the efficiency of inducing. Then those induced cells were implanted into the striatum and substantia nigra of MPTP lesioned hemi-parkinsonian rhesus monkeys. Monkeys were monitored by using behavioral test for six months after implantation. The result showed that cells isolated from the umbilical cord were negative for CD45, CD34 and HLA-DR, but were positive for CD44, CD49d, CD29. After those cells were infected with recombinant adenovirus, RT-PCR result shows that both Lmx1α and NTN genes were transcribed in hUC-MSCs. We also observed that the exogenous were highly expressed in hUC-MSCs from immunofluorescence and western blot. Experiments in vitro have proved that secretion NTN could maintain the survival of rat fetal midbrain dopaminergic neurons. After hUC-MSCs were induced with endogenous and exogenous factors, the mature neurons specific gene TH, Pitx3 was transcripted and the neurons specific protein TH, β-tubulinIII, NSE, Nestin, MAP-2 was expressed in those differentiated cells. In addition, the PD monkeys, transplanted with the induced cells demonstrated the animals' symptoms amelioration by the behavioral measures. Further more, pathological and immunohistochemistry data showed that there were neuronal-like cells survived in the right brain of those PD monkeys, which may play a role as dopaminergic neurons. The findings from this study may help us to better understand the inside mechanisms of PD pathogenesis and may also help developing effective therapy for Parkinson's disease. PMID: 23724014 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The majority of newly generated cells in the adult mouse substantia nigra express low levels of Doublecortin, but their proliferation is unaffected by 6-OHDA-induced nigral lesion or Minocycline-mediated inhibition of neuroinflammation. Eur J Neurosci. 2013 Sep;38(5):2684-92 Authors: Worlitzer MM, Viel T, Jacobs AH, Schwamborn JC Abstract Parkinson's disease is characterized by a selective loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). However, whether regenerative endogenous neurogenesis is taking place in the mammalian SN of parkinsonian and non-parkinsonian brains remains of debate. Here, we tested whether proliferating cells in the SN and their neurogenic potential would be affected by anti-inflammatory treatment under physiological conditions and in the 6-hydroxy-dopamine (6-OHDA) Parkinson's disease mouse model. We report that the majority of newly generated nigral cells are positive for Doublecortin (Dcx), which is an often used marker for neural progenitor cells. Yet, Dcx expression levels in these cells were much lower than in neural progenitor cells of the subventricular zone and the dentate gyrus neural progenitor cells. Furthermore, these newly generated nigral cells are negative for neuronal lineage markers such as TuJ1 and NeuN. Therefore, their neuronal commitment is questionable. Instead, we found evidence for oligodendrogenesis and astrogliosis in the SN. Finally, neither short-term nor long-term inhibition of neuroinflammation by Minocycline- or 6-OHDA-induced lesion affected the numbers of newly generated cells in our disease paradigm. Our findings of adult generated Dcx(+) cells in the SN add important data for understanding the cellular composition and consequently the regenerative capacity of the SN. PMID: 23734736 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Roles of FGF20 in dopaminergic neurons and Parkinson's disease. Front Mol Neurosci. 2013;6:15 Authors: Itoh N, Ohta H Abstract The fibroblast growth factor (FGF) family comprises 22 members with diverse functions in development and metabolism. Fgf20 was originally identified as a new Fgf preferentially expressed in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). Fgf20, which acts on proximal cells, significantly enhanced the survival of cultured dopaminergic neurons by activating the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway through Fgf receptor 1c. In the rat model of Parkinson's disease, Fgf20 afforded significant protection against the loss of dopaminergic neurons. The significant correlation of Parkinson's disease with single-nucleotide polymorphisms in FGF20 indicates that the genetic variability of FGF20 can be a Parkinson's disease risk. Neural and embryonic stem (ES) cells have been considered as cell resources for restorative transplantation strategies in Parkinson's disease. Fgf20 promoted the differentiation of these stem cells into dopaminergic neurons, which attenuated neurological symptoms in animal models of Parkinson's disease. These findings indicate the importance of FGF20 for the differentiation and survival of dopaminergic neurons and the etiology and therapy of Parkinson's disease. PMID: 23754977 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Lack of long-term changes in circadian, locomotor, and cognitive functions in acute and chronic MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine) mouse models of Parkinson's disease. Chronobiol Int. 2013 Jul;30(6):741-55 Authors: Fifel K, Dkhissi-Benyahya O, Cooper HM Abstract In addition to the hallmark motor disorders in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, nonmotor symptoms have attracted increasing attention. Among the nonmotor symptoms, sleep disturbances and cognitive deficits are frequently reported and contribute to a decrease in the quality of life. The pathophysiology of cognitive and sleep-wake abnormalities in PD is poorly understood partially due to the lack of appropriate animal models that fully replicate the entire pathological and behavioral spectrum of the disease. In this study, we undertook a long-term evaluation of circadian, locomotor and cognitive abilities in both acute and chronic MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine)-treated mouse models. Activity rhythms and locomotor activity were assayed under light-dark cycles, constant darkness, or constant light, re-entrainment to shifts of the light-dark cycle, and a behavioral masking paradigm. Cognitive abilities were assessed using a radial water maze task. Although both acute and chronic treatment regimes induced 70% degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra, neither circadian nor cognitive alterations were observed even after nearly 1 yr. During aging, there was a significant decrease of locomotor activity and of several circadian parameters without any exacerbation in MPTP-treated animals. These results emphasize the limitations of the MPTP-treated mouse as an animal model of nonmotor symptoms of PD in addition to the already well-documented inadequacy to replicate cardinal motor features of the disease. PMID: 23758587 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Inhibition of excessive mitochondrial fission reduced aberrant autophagy and neuronal damage caused by LRRK2 G2019S mutation. Hum Mol Genet. 2013 Nov 15;22(22):4545-61 Authors: Su YC, Qi X Abstract LRRK2 G2019S mutation is the most common genetic cause of Parkinson's disease (PD). Cellular pathology caused by this mutant is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction and augmented autophagy. However, the underlying mechanism is not known. In this study, we determined whether blocking excessive mitochondrial fission could reduce cellular damage and neurodegeneration induced by the G2019S mutation. In both LRRK2 G2019S-expressing cells and PD patient fibroblasts carrying this specific mutant, treatment with P110, a selective peptide inhibitor of fission dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1) recently developed in our lab, reduced mitochondrial fragmentation and damage, and corrected excessive autophagy. LRRK2 G2019S directly bound to and phosphorylated Drp1 at Threonine595, whereas P110 treatment abolished this phosphorylation. A site-directed mutant, Drp1(T595A), corrected mitochondrial fragmentation, improved mitochondrial mass and suppressed excessive autophagy in both cells expressing LRRK2 G2019S and PD patient fibroblasts carrying the mutant. Further, in dopaminergic neurons derived from LRRK2 G2019S PD patient-induced pluripotent stem cells, we demonstrated that either P110 treatment or expression of Drp1(T595A) reduced mitochondrial impairment, lysosomal hyperactivity and neurite shortening. Together, we propose that inhibition of Drp1-mediated excessive mitochondrial fission might be a strategy for treatment of PD relevant to LRRK2 G2019S mutation. PMID: 23813973 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Human dental mesenchymal stem cells and neural regeneration. Hum Cell. 2013 Sep;26(3):91-6 Authors: Xiao L, Tsutsui T Abstract Nerve tissue presents inherent difficulties for its effective regeneration. Stem cell transplantation is considered an auspicious treatment for neuronal injuries. Recently, human dental mesenchymal stem cells (DMSCs) have received extensive attention in the field of regenerative medicine due to their accessibility and multipotency. Since their origin is within the neural crest, they can be differentiated into neural crest-derived cells including neuron and glia cells both in vitro and in vivo. DMSCs are also able to secrete a wide variety of neurotrophins and chemokines, which promote neuronal cells to survival and differentiation. Experimental evidence has shown that human DMSCs engraftment recovered neuronal tissue damage in animal models of central nervous system injuries. Human DMSCs can be a new hope for treatment of nervous system diseases and deficits such as spinal cord injury, stroke and Parkinson's disease. PMID: 23817972 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The secretome of mesenchymal stem cells: potential implications for neuroregeneration. Biochimie. 2013 Dec;95(12):2246-56 Authors: Paul G, Anisimov SV Abstract Mesenchymal stem cells have shown regenerative properties in many tissues. This feature had originally been ascribed to their multipotency and thus their ability to differentiate into tissue-specific cells. However, many researchers consider the secretome of mesenchymal stem cells the most important player in the observed reparative effects of these cells. In this review, we specifically focus on the potential neuroregenerative effect of mesenchymal stem cells, summarize several possible mechanisms of neuroregeneration and list key factors mediating this effect. We illustrate examples of mesenchymal stem cell treatment in central nervous system disorders including stroke, neurodegenerative disorders (such as Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, multiple system atrophy and cerebellar ataxia) and inflammatory disease (such as multiple sclerosis). We specifically highlight studies where mesenchymal stem cells have entered clinical trials. PMID: 23871834 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Nrf2/ARE-mediated antioxidant actions of pro-electrophilic drugs. Free Radic Biol Med. 2013 Dec;65:645-57 Authors: Satoh T, McKercher SR, Lipton SA Abstract Living cells maintain a balance between oxidation and reduction, and perturbations of this redox balance are thought to contribute to various diseases. Recent attempts to regulate redox state have focused on electrophiles (EPs), which activate potent cellular defense systems against oxidative stress. One example of this approach is exemplified by carnosic acid (CA) and carnosol (CS), compounds that are found in the herb rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis). Importantly, CA and CS themselves are not electrophilic, but in response to oxidation, become electrophilic, and then activate the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE (antioxidant-response element) transcription pathway to synthesize endogenous antioxidant "phase 2" enzymes. As a result of our efforts to develop these compounds as therapeutics for brain health, we have formulated two innovative criteria for drug development: the first concept is the use of pro-electrophilic drugs (PEDs) that are innocuous in and of themselves; and the second concept involves the use of compounds that are pathologically activated therapeutics (PATs);i.e., these small molecules are chemically converted to their active form by the very oxidative stress that they are designed to then combat. The chemical basis for PED and PAT drugs is embodied in the ortho- and para-hydroquinone electrophilic cores of the molecules, which are oxidized by the Cu(2+)/Cu(+) cycling system (or potentially by other transition metals). Importantly, this cycling pathway is under stringent regulation by the cell redox state. We propose that redox-dependent quinone formation is the predominant mechanism for formation of PED and PAT drugs from their precursor compounds. In fact, redox-dependent generation of the active form of drug from the "pro-form" distinguishes this therapeutic approach from traditional EPs such as curcumin, and results in a decrease in clinical side effects at therapeutic concentrations, e.g., lack of reaction with other thiols such as glutathione (GSH), which can result in lowering GSH and inducing oxidative stress in normal cells. We consider this pro-drug quality of PED/PAT compoundsto be a key factor for generating drugs to be used to combat neurodegenerative diseases that will be clinically tolerated. Given the contribution of oxidative stress to the pathology of multiple neurodegenerative diseases, the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE pathway represents a promising drug target for these PED/PAT agents. PMID: 23892355 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Organotypic cultures as tools for optimizing central nervous system cell therapies. Exp Neurol. 2013 Oct;248:429-40 Authors: Daviaud N, Garbayo E, Schiller PC, Perez-Pinzon M, Montero-Menei CN Abstract Stem cell therapy is a promising treatment for neurological disorders such as cerebral ischemia, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease. In recent years, many clinical trials with various cell types have been performed often showing mixed results. Major problems with cell therapies are the limited cell availability and engraftment and the reduced integration of grafted cells into the host tissue. Stem cell-based therapies can provide a limitless source of cells but survival and differentiation remain a drawback. An improved understanding of the behaviour of stem cells and their interaction with the host tissue, upon implantation, is needed to maximize the therapeutic potential of stem cells in neurological disorders. Organotypic cultures made from brain slices from specific brain regions that can be kept in culture for several weeks after injecting molecules or cells represent a remarkable tool to address these issues. This model allows the researcher to monitor/assess the behaviour and responses of both the endogenous as well as the implanted cells and their interaction with the microenvironment leading to cell engraftment. Moreover, organotypic cultures could be useful to partially model the pathological state of a disease in the brain and to study graft-host interactions prior to testing such grafts for pre-clinical applications. Finally, they can be used to test the therapeutic potential of stem cells when combined with scaffolds, or other therapeutic enhancers, among other aspects, needed to develop novel successful therapeutic strategies or improve on existing ones. PMID: 23899655 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Hyperphosphorylation of CREB in human dopaminergic neurons: a kinetic study of cellular distribution of total CREB and phospho-CREB following oxidative stress. Neuroreport. 2013 Sep 11;24(13):757-62 Authors: Ahmed BY, Husnain O, Stafford R, Howard M, Gujar AS, Moradiya V, Patel KK, Sihotra S Abstract The neurotoxin, 6-hydroxy dopamine (6-OHDA)-induced oxidative stress causes alterations in intracellular signalling events and activates cellular and molecular mechanisms leading to the degeneration of the dopamine-containing neurons (DCNs). The cyclic-AMP response element-binding protein (CREB) modulates the transcription of mitochondrial and nuclear genes upon phosphorylation. However, oxidative stress disrupts CREB functions and inhibits CREB signalling pathways. We have measured the activities and levels of both total CREB and its phosphorylated form (phospho-CREB) in cytosolic, mitochondrial and nuclear compartments in control (untreated) and stressed (6-OHDA-treated) DCN, differentiated from the ReNVM cell line (dDCN) at 0, 24 and 72 h time points following oxidative stress. Our results indicate that CREB phosphorylation occurs in all three subcellular locations. It further shows significant disruption of the phosphorylation process by 6-OHDA treatment and shows tridirectional trafficking of total CREB and phospho-CREB between cytosol, mitochondria and nucleus following oxidative stress induced by 6-OHDA treatment. In conclusion, our results indicate the presence of specific signalling molecules in all the compartments studied and their involvement in the signal transduction processes, where total CREB and phospho-CREB levels and activities are either upregulated or downregulated to balance each other for their roles. PMID: 23921595 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Transplantation of fetal midbrain dopamine progenitors into a rodent model of Parkinson's disease. Methods Mol Biol. 2013;1059:169-80 Authors: Thompson LH, Parish CL Abstract Cell therapy is a promising experimental treatment for Parkinson's disease (PD). It is based on the idea that new dopamine neurons transplanted directly into the forebrain of the patient can structurally and functionally compensate for those lost to the disease in order to restore motor function. While there is a highly active field of research focused on the development of stem cell-based procedures, fetal tissue remains the "gold standard" as a safe and reliable source of dopamine neuron progenitors capable of structural and functional integration with existing motor circuitry following transplantation. This chapter describes the basic procedures for preparation of dopamine progenitor rich cell suspensions of ventral mesencephalon as well as implantation into the unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine model of PD and assessment of functional impact according to drug-induced rotational behavior. The description assumes a basic knowledge of animal handling and stereotaxic surgical procedures in rodents. PMID: 23934843 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Neuronal firing activity and gene expression changes in the subthalamic nucleus after transplantation of dopamine neurons in hemiparkinsonian rats. Neurobiol Dis. 2013 Nov;59:230-43 Authors: Rumpel R, Alam M, Klein A, Özer M, Wesemann M, Jin X, Krauss JK, Schwabe K, Ratzka A, Grothe C Abstract Dopamine (DA) depletion in the nigrostriatal system leads to basal ganglia dysfunction both in Parkinson's disease (PD) and in 6-hydroxy dopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rats with neuronal hyperactivity in the subthalamic nucleus (STN), i.e. increased firing rate and burst activity, together with enhanced beta oscillatory activity. Moreover, intrastriatal transplantation of DA neurons has been shown to functionally re-innervate the host striatum and restore DA input. However, the effects of those transplanted cells on the STN are not well characterized. Therefore, we transplanted cells, derived from the ventral mesencephalon of E12 rat embryos, intrastriatally in the unilateral 6-OHDA-lesioned rat model of PD. We combined behavioral and histological findings with electrophysiological extracellular recordings in the STN, as well as qRT-PCR analyses of dopaminergic, GABAergic, and glutamatergic transporter and receptor genes in the striatum and the STN. Transplanted animals displayed improved rotational behavior after amphetamine injection by 50% in rats with small grafts (586±109 SEM dopamine cells), or even overcompensation by 116% in rats with large grafts (3486±548 SEM dopamine cells). Electrophysiological measurements revealed, that in rats with large grafts burst activity was not affected, while STN neuronal firing rate, as well as beta oscillatory activity was alleviated, whereas small grafts had less impact. Interestingly, both behavioral and electrophysiological measures were dependent on the number of surviving tyrosine hydroxylase positive cells. Although grafted rats displayed restored expression of the GABA synthesizing enzymes Gad65 and Gad67 in the striatum compared to naive rats, the grafts induced a decreased mRNA expression of dopamine receptor Drd2, glutamate receptors AMPA3, NMDA2A, and NMDA2B, and glutamate transporter Eaat3. Interestingly, the NMDA receptor subunit 2B and glutamate transporter Eaat3 were also less expressed in the STN of grafted animals compared to naive rats. In summary, DA grafts restore functional deficits and cause partial improvement of subthalamic neuronal activity. Incomplete recovery, however, may be due to decreased receptor gene expression induced by DA grafts in the striatum and in the STN. PMID: 23938762 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The impact of reactive oxygen species and genetic mitochondrial mutations in Parkinson's disease. Gene. 2013 Dec 10;532(1):18-23 Authors: Zuo L, Motherwell MS Abstract The exact pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD) is still unknown and proper mechanisms that correspond to the disease remain unidentified. It is understood that PD is age-related; as age increases, the chance of onset responds accordingly. Although there are no current means of curing PD, the understanding of reactive oxygen species (ROS) provides significant insight to possible treatments. Complex I deficiencies of the respiratory chain account for the majority of unfavorable neural apoptosis generation in PD. Dopaminergic neurons are severely damaged as a result of the deficiency. Symptoms such as inhibited cognitive ability and loss of smooth motor function are the results of such impairment. The genetic mutations of Parkinson's related proteins such as PINK1 and LRRK2 contribute to mitochondrial dysfunction which precedes ROS formation. Various pathways are inhibited by these mutations, and inevitably causing neural cell damage. Antioxidants are known to negate the damaging effects of free radical overexpression. This paper expands on the specific impact of mitochondrial genetic change and production of free radicals as well as its correlation to the neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease. PMID: 23954870 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Road to future: iPSC clinical application in Parkinson's disease treatment. Curr Mol Med. 2013 Nov;13(9):1412-8 Authors: Xu L, Tan YY, Wu L, Wang LL, Li H, Ding JQ, Chen SD Abstract Cell-replacement therapy using Parkinson's disease (PD) specific induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) holds great promise in treating PD. However, the problem of iPSC safety and efficiency restrict its clinical application. Meanwhile the requirement of skin biopsy for fibroblast will increase the risk of complication. In the past few years, the advances of iPSC technology in efficiency, cell resource, safety and cell culture have made it possible to use the derivatives of iPSCs to clinical PD treatment. This review will summarize these progresses of iPSC technique in this fast-moving community. PMID: 23971738 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Effects of allogeneic bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cell therapy on voiding function in a rat model of Parkinson disease. J Urol. 2014 Mar;191(3):850-9 Authors: Campeau L, Soler R, Sittadjody S, Pareta R, Nomiya M, Zarifpour M, Opara EC, Yoo JJ, Andersson KE Abstract PURPOSE: Cellular therapy induced transient urodynamic improvement in a rat model of Parkinson disease in which bladder dysfunction was noted after unilateral injection of 6-hydroxydopamine into the medial forebrain bundle. We sought to prolong the effect by injecting allogeneic rat bone marrow mesenchymal stromal cells before and after microencapsulation into the substantia nigra pars compacta. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Female rats underwent unilateral stereotactic injection of 6-hydroxydopamine in the medial forebrain bundle. Injection was performed in the ipsilateral substantia nigra pars compacta using vehicle alone or vehicle with nonmicroencapsulated or microencapsulated rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells. Rats were evaluated by cystometry 7, 14, 28 and 42 days after treatment. Brains were extracted for immunostaining. RESULTS: At 42 days the nonmicroencapsulated group had lower threshold and intermicturition pressure, spontaneous activity and AUC than vehicle treated animals. Rats that received microencapsulated cells had lower threshold pressure at 28 days and lower spontaneous activity at 42 days than vehicle treated rats. Microencapsulated and nonmicroencapsulated rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells were noted in the substantia nigra pars compacta up to 42 days after transplantation. At 42 days tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons were more numerous in the substantia nigra pars compacta of the nonmicroencapsulated group, followed by the microencapsulated and vehicle treated groups. CONCLUSIONS: Urodynamic effects of the 6-hydroxydopamine lesion persisted up to 42 days after vehicle injection. Transplantation of nonmicroencapsulated rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells improved urodynamic pressure by 42 days after treatment more markedly than microencapsulated cells. This was associated with more tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons in the treated substantia nigra pars compacta of the nonmicroencapsulated group, suggesting that functional improvement requires a juxtacrine effect. PMID: 23973520 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Can we teach old dogs new tricks? Neuroprotective cell therapy in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. J Alzheimers Dis. 2013;37(2):251-72 Authors: Kazmerova Z, Zilka N, Cente M, Neradil P, Zilkova M, Novak M Abstract Human neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease represent unmet medical need. There is no effective cure available on the market. Several novel therapeutic approaches targeting fundamental features of these disorders have been proposed during the last two decades. Cell therapy represents one of the most promising therapeutic avenues targeting different pathological traits of these disorders. However, there are some caveats that should be taken into the consideration including ethical issues and limited utilization for routine clinical practice. It is unlikely that cell therapy constitutes the 'magic bullet' therapeutic approach that would meet all therapeutic needs. However, in the future it can potentially bolster the effect of disease modifying drugs by improving the brain environment and regulation of inflammatory and neurotrophic pathways. PMID: 23985419 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Effect of F68 on cryopreservation of mesenchymal stem cells derived from human tooth germ. Appl Biochem Biotechnol. 2013 Dec;171(7):1819-31 Authors: Doğan A, Yalvaç ME, Yılmaz A, Rizvanov A, Sahin F Abstract The use of stem-cell-based therapies in regenerative medicine and in the treatment of disorders such as Parkinson, Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, spinal cord injuries, and cancer has been shown to be promising. Among all stem cells, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were reported to have anti-apoptotic, immunomodulatory, and angiogenic effects which are attributed to the restorative capacity of these cells. Human tooth germ stem cells (HTGSCs) having mesenchymal stem cell characteristics have been proven to exert high proliferation and differentiation capacity. Unlike bone-marrow-derived MSCs, HTGSCs can be easily isolated, expanded, and cryopreserved, which makes them an alternative stem cell source. Regardless of their sources, the stem cells are exposed to physical and chemical stresses during cryopreservation, hindering their therapeutic capacity. Amelioration of the side effects of cryopreservation on MSCs seems to be a priority in order to maximize the therapeutic efficacy of these cells. In this study, we tested the effect of Pluronic 188 (F68) on HTGSCs during long-term cryopreservation and repeated freezing and defrosting cycles. Our data revealed that F68 has a protective role on survival and differentiation of HTGSCs in long-term cryopreservation. PMID: 23999741 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Novel perspectives for Parkinson's disease therapy: insights from the latest advances in disease pathophysiology, diagnostic and experimental tools and molecular targets. CNS Neurol Disord Drug Targets. 2013 Dec;12(8):1083-5 Authors: Spano PF, Bellucci A PMID: 24040812 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Induced pluripotent stem cell-based studies of Parkinson's disease: challenges and promises. CNS Neurol Disord Drug Targets. 2013 Dec;12(8):1114-27 Authors: Sanchez-Danes A, Benzoni P, Memo M, Dell'Era P, Raya A, Consiglio A Abstract A critical step in the development of effective therapeutics to treat Parkinson's disease (PD) is the identification of molecular pathogenic mechanisms underlying this chronically progressive neurodegenerative disease. However, while animal models have provided valuable information about the molecular basis of PD, the lack of faithful cellular and animal models that recapitulate human pathophysiology is delaying the development of new therapeutics. The reprogramming of somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) using delivery of defined combinations of transcription factors is a groundbreaking discovery that opens great opportunities for modeling human diseases, including PD, since iPSC can be generated from patients and differentiated into disease-relevant cell types, which would capture the patients' genetic complexity. Furthermore, human iPSC-derived neuronal models offer unprecedented access to early stages of the disease, allowing the investigation of the events that initiate the pathologic process in PD. Recently, human iPSC-derived neurons from patients with familial and sporadic PD have been generated and importantly they recapitulate some PD-related cell phenotypes, including abnormal α-synuclein accumulation in vitro, and alterations in the autophagy machinery. This review highlights the current PD iPSC-based models and discusses the potential future research directions of this field. PMID: 24040813 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Cell transplantation in the damaged adult brain. Rev Neurol (Paris). 2013 Nov;169(11):838-43 Authors: Jaber M, Benoit-Marand M, Prestoz L, Gaillard A Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most common movement disorder in Europe, affecting more than two million people between 50 and 70 years of age. The current therapeutic approaches are of symptomatic nature and fail to halt the progressive neurodegenerative course of the disease. The development of innovative and complementary approaches to promote cellular repair may pave the way for disease-modifying therapies which may lead to less suffering for the patients and their families and finally to more cost-effective therapies. To date, cell replacement trials in PD aiming at replacing lost dopamine neurons were mainly focused on placing the transplanted cells within the target site, the striatum, and not within the lesioned site, the substantia nigra (SN). This was based on the misconception that the adult brain constitutes a non-permissive barrier not allowing the outgrowth of long distance axons originating from transplanted embryonic neurons. A growing body of evidence is challenging this concept and proposing instead to place the graft within its ontogenic site. This has been performed in several lesional animal models for various traumatic or neurodegenerative pathologies of the brain. For instance, transplanted neurons within the lesioned motor cortex were shown to be able to send distant and appropriate projections to target areas including the spinal cord. Similarly, in an animal model of PD, mesencephalic embryonic cells transplanted within the lesioned SN send massive projections to the striatum and, to a lesser extent, the frontal cortex and the nucleus accumbens. This has lead to the proposal that homotopic transplantation may be an alternative in cell-based therapies as transplanted neurons can integrate within the host brain, send projections to target areas, restore the damaged circuitry, increase neurotransmitter levels and ameliorate behavior. We will discuss also the potential of replacing embryonic neuronal cells by stem cell derived neurons as the use of embryonic cells is not without an ethical and logistical burden; in this line many have thrived to derive neurons from embryonic stem cells (ESC) in order to use them for cell transplantation. These studies are already yielding important information for future approaches in the field of cell therapies in PD but also in other neurodegenerative disorders where cell transplantation therapy may be considered. While the field of cell replacement therapies has been recently called into question with contrasting results in transplanted PD patients, these new sets of findings are raising new hopes and opening new avenues in this rejuvenated field. PMID: 24112517 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Stem cells and the reproductive system: historical perspective and future directions. Maturitas. 2013 Nov;76(3):284-9 Authors: Duke CM, Taylor HS Abstract Recent findings in stem cell biology have presented new perspectives and opportunities for the treatment of reproductive disease. In a departure from the long held dogma of embryologically fixed numbers of oocytes, current literature suggests that human ovaries contain stem cells which form new oocytes even in adulthood and that these stem cells can be cultured in vitro to develop into mature oocytes. These findings have provided new hope and broader options for fertility preservation. Evidence of endometrial regeneration by bone marrow stem cells in endometrial tissue of women who received bone marrow transplant highlight potential for the novel treatments of uterine disorders and supports new theories for the etiology of endometriosis - ectopic transdifferentiation of stem cells. Further, endometrial derived stem cells have been demonstrated to be useful in the treatment of several chronic and often debilitating diseases, including Parkinson's Disease and Diabetes. Other cells that may present future therapeutic benefits for a myriad of disease states include placental and fetal cells which enter maternal circulation during pregnancy and can later promote parenchymal regeneration in maternal tissue. These findings highlight novel functions of the uterus and ovaries. They demonstrate that the uterus is a dynamic organ permeable to fetal stem cells capable of transdifferentiation as well as a renewable source of multipotent stem cells. While we still have much to understand about stem cells, their potential applications in reproductive biology and medicine are countless. PMID: 24144960 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The challenges of administering cell-based therapies to patients with Parkinson's disease. Neuroreport. 2013 Dec 18;24(18):1000-4 Authors: Drouin-Ouellet J, Barker RA Abstract Although the concept of cell-based therapy for Parkinson's disease has been around for more than three decades with proof-of-concept studies in man having been achieved, it still remains a controversial experimental therapy. In this review, we discuss the reasons for this and the challenges that this approach generates in the treatment of Parkinson's disease in terms of adopting better strategies by which to develop this whole therapeutic area, an approach that is becoming more necessary as the era of stem cell therapies start to become a clinical reality. PMID: 24145775 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles LRRK2 mutations cause mitochondrial DNA damage in iPSC-derived neural cells from Parkinson's disease patients: reversal by gene correction. Neurobiol Dis. 2014 Feb;62:381-6 Authors: Sanders LH, Laganière J, Cooper O, Mak SK, Vu BJ, Huang YA, Paschon DE, Vangipuram M, Sundararajan R, Urnov FD, Langston JW, Gregory PD, Zhang HS, Greenamyre JT, Isacson O, Schüle B Abstract Parkinson's disease associated mutations in leucine rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) impair mitochondrial function and increase the vulnerability of induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived neural cells from patients to oxidative stress. Since mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) damage can compromise mitochondrial function, we examined whether LRRK2 mutations can induce damage to the mitochondrial genome. We found greater levels of mtDNA damage in iPSC-derived neural cells from patients carrying homozygous or heterozygous LRRK2 G2019S mutations, or at-risk individuals carrying the heterozygous LRRK2 R1441C mutation, than in cells from unrelated healthy subjects who do not carry LRRK2 mutations. After zinc finger nuclease-mediated repair of the LRRK2 G2019S mutation in iPSCs, mtDNA damage was no longer detected in differentiated neuroprogenitor and neural cells. Our results unambiguously link LRRK2 mutations to mtDNA damage and validate a new cellular phenotype that can be used for examining pathogenic mechanisms and screening therapeutic strategies. PMID: 24148854 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Promise of neurorestoration and mitochondrial biogenesis in Parkinson's disease with multi target drugs: an alternative to stem cell therapy. Exp Neurobiol. 2013 Sep;22(3):167-72 Authors: Youdim MB, Oh YJ Abstract There is an unmet need in progressive neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. The present therapeutics for these diseases at best is symptomatic and is not able to delay disease or possess disease modifying activity. Thus an approach to drug design should be made to slow or halt progressive course of a neurological disorder by interfering with a disease-specific pathogenetic process. This would entail the ability of the drug to protect neurons by blocking the common pathway for neuronal injury and cell death and the ability to promote regeneration of neurons and restoration of neuronal function. We have now developed a number of multi target drugs which possess neuroprotective, and neurorestorative activity as well as being able to active PGC-1α (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ coactivator-1α), SIRT1 (NAD-dependent deacetylase protein) and NTF (mitochondrial transcription factor) that are intimately associated with mitochondrial biogenesis. PMID: 24167412 [PubMed]
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Related Articles [New prospects for therapy in Parkinson's disease]. Drug Res (Stuttg). 2013 Nov;63 Suppl 1:S23 Authors: Reichmann H PMID: 24242036 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Neuroimaging for optimization of stem cell therapy in Parkinson's disease. Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2013 Dec;13(12):1631-8 Authors: Hayashi T, Onoe H Abstract Out of all the neurodegenerative diseases, cell-based therapy has been most intensively tested in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. Recently, technical advancements in stem cell research have opened the possibility of using stem cell-induced dopaminergic neurons in the clinical setting. However, many issues are yet to be overcome in order to achieve effective and safe therapy before clinical trials can be possible. Here, we discuss how neuroimaging techniques can be used to accelerate studies of stem cell therapy in PD. Neuroimaging techniques allow us to measure various biological markers repeatedly and quantitatively, which may serve as a powerful tool for optimizing the use of stem cells in preclinical and clinical trials. PMID: 24206114 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Long-term clinical outcome of fetal cell transplantation for Parkinson disease: two case reports. JAMA Neurol. 2014 Jan;71(1):83-7 Authors: Kefalopoulou Z, Politis M, Piccini P, Mencacci N, Bhatia K, Jahanshahi M, Widner H, Rehncrona S, Brundin P, Björklund A, Lindvall O, Limousin P, Quinn N, Foltynie T Abstract IMPORTANCE: Recent advances in stem cell technologies have rekindled an interest in the use of cell replacement strategies for patients with Parkinson disease. This study reports the very long-term clinical outcomes of fetal cell transplantation in 2 patients with Parkinson disease. Such long-term follow-up data can usefully inform on the potential efficacy of this approach, as well as the design of trials for its further evaluation. OBSERVATIONS: Two patients received intrastriatal grafts of human fetal ventral mesencephalic tissue, rich in dopaminergic neuroblasts, as restorative treatment for their Parkinson disease. To evaluate the very long-term efficacy of the grafts, clinical assessments were performed 18 and 15 years posttransplantation. Motor improvements gained gradually over the first postoperative years were sustained up to 18 years posttransplantation, while both patients have discontinued, and remained free of any, pharmacological dopaminergic therapy. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: The results from these 2 cases indicate that dopaminergic cell transplantation can offer very long-term symptomatic relief in patients with Parkinson disease and provide proof-of-concept support for future clinical trials using fetal or stem cell therapies. PMID: 24217017 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles [110th Scientific Meeting of the Japanese Society of Internal Medicine: Symposium: 1. Frontier of the regenerative medicine; 3) Regenerative medicine for neurological disorders]. Nihon Naika Gakkai Zasshi. 2013 Sep 10;102(9):2241-6 Authors: Takahashi J PMID: 24228405 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The promises of stem cells: stem cell therapy for movement disorders. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2014 Jan;20 Suppl 1:S128-31 Authors: Mochizuki H, Choong CJ, Yasuda T Abstract Despite the multitude of intensive research, the exact pathophysiological mechanisms underlying movement disorders including Parkinson's disease, multiple system atrophy and Huntington's disease remain more or less elusive. Treatments to halt these disease progressions are currently unavailable. With the recent induced pluripotent stem cells breakthrough and accomplishment, stem cell research, as the vast majority of scientists agree, holds great promise for relieving and treating debilitating movement disorders. As stem cells are the precursors of all cells in the human body, an understanding of the molecular mechanisms that govern how they develop and work would provide us many fundamental insights into human biology of health and disease. Moreover, stem-cell-derived neurons may be a renewable source of replacement cells for damaged neurons in movement disorders. While stem cells show potential for regenerative medicine, their use as tools for research and drug testing is thought to have more immediate impact. The use of stem-cell-based drug screening technology could be a big boost in drug discovery for these movement disorders. Particular attention should also be given to the involvement of neural stem cells in adult neurogenesis so as to encourage its development as a therapeutic option. PMID: 24262163 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Reprint of: Nrf2/ARE-mediated antioxidant actions of pro-electrophilic drugs. Free Radic Biol Med. 2014 Jan;66:45-57 Authors: Satoh T, McKercher SR, Lipton SA Abstract Living cells maintain a balance between oxidation and reduction, and perturbations of this redox balance are thought to contribute to various diseases. Recent attempts to regulate redox state have focused on electrophiles (EPs), which activate potent cellular defense systems against oxidative stress. One example of this approach is exemplified by carnosic acid (CA) and carnosol (CS), compounds that are found in the herb rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis). Importantly, CA and CS themselves are not electrophilic, but in response to oxidation, become electrophilic, and then activate the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE (antioxidant-response element) transcription pathway to synthesize endogenous antioxidant "phase 2"enzymes. As a result of our efforts to develop these compounds as therapeutics for brain health, we have formulated two innovative criteria for drug development: the first concept is the use of pro-electrophilic drugs (PEDs) that are innocuous in and of themselves; and the second concept involves the use of compounds that are pathologically activated therapeutics (PATs); i.e., these small molecules are chemically converted to their active form by the very oxidative stress that they are designed to then combat. The chemical basis for PED and PAT drugs is embodied in the ortho- and para-hydroquinone electrophilic cores of the molecules, which are oxidized by the Cu(2+)/Cu(+) cycling system (or potentially by other transition metals). Importantly, this cycling pathway is under stringent regulation by the cell redox state. We propose that redox-dependent quinone formation is the predominant mechanism for formation of PED and PAT drugs from their precursor compounds. In fact, redox-dependent generation of the active form of drug from the "pro-form" distinguishes this therapeutic approach from traditional EPs such as curcumin, and results in a decrease in clinical side effects at therapeutic concentrations, e.g., lack of reaction with other thiols such as glutathione (GSH), which can result in lowering GSH and inducing oxidative stress in normal cells. We consider this pro-drug quality of PED/PAT compounds to be a key factor for generating drugs to be used to combat neurodegenerative diseases that will be clinically tolerated. Given the contribution of oxidative stress to the pathology of multiple neurodegenerative diseases, the Keap1/Nrf2/ARE pathway represents a promising drug target for these PED/PAT agents. PMID: 24262357 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Modeling human neurological disorders with induced pluripotent stem cells. J Neurochem. 2014 May;129(3):388-99 Authors: Imaizumi Y, Okano H Abstract Human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells obtained by reprogramming technology are a source of great hope, not only in terms of applications in regenerative medicine, such as cell transplantation therapy, but also for modeling human diseases and new drug development. In particular, the production of iPS cells from the somatic cells of patients with intractable diseases and their subsequent differentiation into cells at affected sites (e.g., neurons, cardiomyocytes, hepatocytes, and myocytes) has permitted the in vitro construction of disease models that contain patient-specific genetic information. For example, disease-specific iPS cells have been established from patients with neuropsychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and autism, as well as from those with neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. A multi-omics analysis of neural cells originating from patient-derived iPS cells may thus enable investigators to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms of neurological diseases that have heretofore been unknown. In addition, large-scale screening of chemical libraries with disease-specific iPS cells is currently underway and is expected to lead to new drug discovery. Accordingly, this review outlines the progress made via the use of patient-derived iPS cells toward the modeling of neurological disorders, the testing of existing drugs, and the discovery of new drugs. The production of human induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from the patients' somatic cells and their subsequent differentiation into specific cells have permitted the in vitro construction of disease models that contain patient-specific genetic information. Furthermore, innovations of gene-editing technologies on iPS cells are enabling new approaches for illuminating the pathogenic mechanisms of human diseases. In this review article, we outlined the current status of neurological diseases-specific iPS cell research and described recently obtained knowledge in the form of actual examples. PMID: 24286589 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Enhancement of polysialic acid expression improves function of embryonic stem-derived dopamine neuron grafts in Parkinsonian mice. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2014 Jan;3(1):108-13 Authors: Battista D, Ganat Y, El Maarouf A, Studer L, Rutishauser U Abstract There has been considerable progress in obtaining engraftable embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived midbrain dopamine neurons for cell replacement therapy in models of Parkinson's disease; however, limited integration and striatal reinnervation of ES-derived grafts remain a major challenge for future clinical translation. In this paper, we show that enhanced expression of polysialic acid results in improved graft efficiency in correcting behavioral deficits in Parkinsonian mice. This result is accompanied by two potentially relevant cellular changes: greater survival of transplanted ES-derived dopamine neurons and robust sprouting of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive processes into host tissue. Because the procedures used to enhance polysialic acid are easily translated to other cell types and species, this approach may represent a general strategy to improve graft integration in cell-based therapies. PMID: 24311700 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Co-transplantation of GDNF-overexpressing neural stem cells and fetal dopaminergic neurons mitigates motor symptoms in a rat model of Parkinson's disease. PLoS One. 2013;8(12):e80880 Authors: Deng X, Liang Y, Lu H, Yang Z, Liu R, Wang J, Song X, Long J, Li Y, Lei D, Feng Z Abstract Striatal transplantation of dopaminergic (DA) neurons or neural stem cells (NSCs) has been reported to improve the symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD), but the low rate of cell survival, differentiation, and integration in the host brain limits the therapeutic efficacy. We investigated the therapeutic effects of intracranial co-transplantation of mesencephalic NSCs stably overexpressing human glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF-mNSCs) together with fetal DA neurons in the 6-OHDA rat model of PD. Striatal injection of mNSCs labeled by the contrast enhancer superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) resulted in a hypointense signal in the striatum on T2-weighted magnetic resonance images that lasted for at least 8 weeks post-injection, confirming the long-term survival of injected stem cells in vivo. Co-transplantation of GDNF-mNSCs with fetal DA neurons significantly reduced apomorphine-induced rotation, a behavioral endophenotype of PD, compared to sham-treated controls, rats injected with mNSCs expressing empty vector (control mNSCs) plus fetal DA neurons, or rats injected separately with either control mNSCs, GDNF-mNSCs, or fetal DA neurons. In addition, survival and differentiation of mNSCs into DA neurons was significantly greater following co-transplantation of GDNF-mNSCs plus fetal DA neurons compared to the other treatment groups as indicated by the greater number of cell expressing both the mNSCs lineage tracer enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) and the DA neuron marker tyrosine hydroxylase. The success of cell-based therapies for PD may be greatly improved by co-transplantation of fetal DA neurons with mNSCs genetically modified to overexpress trophic factors such as GDNF that support differentiation into DA cells and their survival in vivo. PMID: 24312503 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Human iPSC-based modeling of late-onset disease via progerin-induced aging. Cell Stem Cell. 2013 Dec 5;13(6):691-705 Authors: Miller JD, Ganat YM, Kishinevsky S, Bowman RL, Liu B, Tu EY, Mandal PK, Vera E, Shim JW, Kriks S, Taldone T, Fusaki N, Tomishima MJ, Krainc D, Milner TA, Rossi DJ, Studer L Abstract Reprogramming somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) resets their identity back to an embryonic age and, thus, presents a significant hurdle for modeling late-onset disorders. In this study, we describe a strategy for inducing aging-related features in human iPSC-derived lineages and apply it to the modeling of Parkinson's disease (PD). Our approach involves expression of progerin, a truncated form of lamin A associated with premature aging. We found that expression of progerin in iPSC-derived fibroblasts and neurons induces multiple aging-related markers and characteristics, including dopamine-specific phenotypes such as neuromelanin accumulation. Induced aging in PD iPSC-derived dopamine neurons revealed disease phenotypes that require both aging and genetic susceptibility, such as pronounced dendrite degeneration, progressive loss of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression, and enlarged mitochondria or Lewy-body-precursor inclusions. Thus, our study suggests that progerin-induced aging can be used to reveal late-onset age-related disease features in hiPSC-based disease models. PMID: 24315443 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Buspirone anti-dyskinetic effect is correlated with temporal normalization of dysregulated striatal DRD1 signalling in L-DOPA-treated rats. Neuropharmacology. 2014 Apr;79:726-37 Authors: Azkona G, Sagarduy A, Aristieta A, Vazquez N, Zubillaga V, Ruíz-Ortega JA, Pérez-Navarro E, Ugedo L, Sánchez-Pernaute R Abstract Dopamine replacement with l-DOPA is the most effective therapy in Parkinson's disease. However, with chronic treatment, half of the patients develop an abnormal motor response including dyskinesias. The specific molecular mechanisms underlying dyskinesias are not fully understood. In this study, we used a well-characterized animal model to first establish the molecular differences between rats that did and did not develop dyskinesias. We then investigated the molecular substrates implicated in the anti-dyskinetic effect of buspirone, a 5HT1A partial agonist. Striatal protein expression profile of dyskinetic animals revealed increased levels of the dopamine receptor (DR)D3, ΔFosB and phospho (p)CREB, as well as an over-activation of the DRD1 signalling pathway, reflected by elevated ratios of phosphorylated DARPP32 and ERK2. Buspirone reduced the abnormal involuntary motor response in dyskinetic rats in a dose-dependent fashion. Buspirone (4 mg/kg) dramatically reduced the presence and severity of dyskinesias (by 83%) and normalized DARPP32 and ERK2 phosphorylation ratios, while the increases in DRD3, ΔFosB and pCREB observed in dyskinetic rats were not modified. Pharmacological experiments combining buspirone with 5HT1A and DRD3 antagonists confirmed that normalization of both pDARPP32 and pERK2 is required, but not sufficient, for blocking dyskinesias. The correlation between pDARPP32 ratio and dyskinesias was significant but not strong, pointing to the involvement of convergent factors and signalling pathways. Our results suggest that in dyskinetic rats DRD3 striatal over-expression could be instrumental in the activation of DRD1-downstream signalling and demonstrate that the anti-dyskinetic effect of buspirone in this model is correlated with DRD1 pathway normalization. PMID: 24333147 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Modulating Wnt signaling to improve cell replacement therapy for Parkinson's disease. J Mol Cell Biol. 2014 Feb;6(1):54-63 Authors: Parish CL, Thompson LH Abstract Clinical trials have demonstrated the capacity for dopamine neurons, transplanted ectopically into the striatum, to structurally integrate, restore dopamine transmission, and induce long-term functional benefits for Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. Despite this proof of principle, a number of limitations have hindered the development of cell replacement therapy over the past 20 years, particularly tissue availability, graft survival, and adequate reinnervation of the host brain. With a greater understanding of failure in prior clinical trials, increased knowledge of midbrain dopamine development (now including Wnts), and the development of pluripotent stem cell technologies, we are better equipped than ever to re-address a number of these challenges. This review summarizes the trials, tribulations, and progress in cell replacement therapy for PD. We discuss the prospects of modulating canonical and non-canonical Wnt signaling to improve cell therapy based upon their roles in dopamine neural development and the adult brain. This will include the potential of Wnts to (i) expand fetally derived tissue in vitro and following transplantation, (ii) promote the differentiation of pluripotent stem cells, (iii) increase graft integration and restoration of neural circuitry, and finally (iv) enhance graft survival. PMID: 24334258 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 modulates cyclooxygenase 2 and the inflammatory response in idiopathic and genetic Parkinson's disease. Neurobiol Aging. 2014 May;35(5):1116-24 Authors: Lopez de Maturana R, Aguila JC, Sousa A, Vazquez N, Del Rio P, Aiastui A, Gorostidi A, Lopez de Munain A, Sanchez-Pernaute R Abstract Inflammatory mechanisms are activated in aging and late-onset neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease (PD). Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) contribute to both idiopathic and familial forms of PD. Here, we investigated the involvement of LRRK2 in inflammatory pathways using primary dermal fibroblasts from patients with 2 common mutations in LRRK2 (G2019S and R1441G), idiopathic PD and age-matched healthy individuals. Basal cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 RNA levels were very high in the fibroblasts of all patients. Remarkably, LRRK2 silencing experiments significantly reduced basal COX-2 levels and COX-2 induction after a pro-inflammatory stimulus. Additionally, in samples from patients with the R1441G mutation and with idiopathic PD, we found a prominent cytoplasmic re-distribution of human antigen R, a protein that, among others, stabilizes COX-2 RNA. Furthermore, the response to lipopolysaccharide was defective in these 2 groups, which showed weak induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines and reduced NFκB transcriptional activation. In summary, we describe multiple defects in inflammatory pathways in which LRRK2 appears to be critically involved. Further studies are required to establish the therapeutic implications of inflammatory dysregulation in the pathophysiology of Parkinson's disease. PMID: 24360742 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles The future of cell therapies and brain repair: Parkinson's disease leads the way. Neuropathol Appl Neurobiol. 2014 Feb;40(1):60-70 Authors: Petit GH, Olsson TT, Brundin P Abstract During the past 40 years brain tissue grafting techniques have been used both to study fundamental neurobiological questions and to treat neurological diseases. Motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease are largely due to degeneration of midbrain dopamine neurones. Because the nigrostriatal pathology is relatively focused anatomically, Parkinson's disease is considered the ideal candidate for brain repair by neural grafting and dopamine neurone transplantation for it has led the way in the neural transplantation research field. In this mini-review, we briefly highlight four important areas of development. First, we describe marked functional benefits up to 18 years after transplantation surgery in patients with Parkinson's disease. This is proof-of-principle that, using optimal techniques and patient selection, grafted dopamine neurones can work in humans and the duration of the benefit exceeds placebo effects associated with surgery. Second, we describe that eventually protein aggregates containing α-synuclein, identical to Lewy bodies, develop inside foetal dopamine neurones transplanted to patients with Parkinson's disease. This gives clues about pathogenetic mechanisms operating in Parkinson's disease, and also raises the question whether neural graft function will eventually decline as the result of the disease process. Third, we describe new emerging sources of transplantable dopamine neurones derived from pluripotent stem cells or reprogrammed adult somatic cells. Fourth, we highlight an important European Union-funded multicentre clinical trial involving transplantation of foetal dopamine neurones in Parkinson's disease. We describe the design of this ongoing trial and how it can impact on the overall future of cell therapy in Parkinson's disease. PMID: 24372386 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Wnt signaling in midbrain dopaminergic neuron development and regenerative medicine for Parkinson's disease. J Mol Cell Biol. 2014 Feb;6(1):42-53 Authors: Arenas E Abstract Wnts are a highly conserved family of lipid-modified glycoproteins that work as morphogens to activate several signaling pathways, leading to remodeling of the cytoskeleton and the regulation of gene transcription. Wnt signaling regulates multiple cellular functions and cell systems, including the development and maintenance of midbrain dopaminergic (mDA) neurons. These neurons are of considerable interest for regenerative medicine because their degeneration results in Parkinson's disease (PD). This review focuses on new advances in understanding key functions of Wnts in mDA neuron development and using novel tools to regulate Wnt signaling in regenerative medicine for PD. Particularly, recent reports indicate that appropriate levels of Wnt signaling are essential to improve the quantity and quality of stem cell- or reprogrammed cell-derived mDA neurons to be used in drug discovery and cell replacement therapy for PD. PMID: 24431302 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Advances in stem-cell--generated transplantation therapy for Parkinson's disease. Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2014 Apr;14(4):437-53 Authors: Sundberg M, Isacson O Abstract INTRODUCTION: Human pluripotent stem cells have the potential to differentiate into different cell lineages of the human body, including dopaminergic (DA) neurons. Previous studies have shown that stem-cell--derived DA neurons can improve the motor deficits of Parkinson's disease (PD) animal models. That is why current research interests focus on the development of stem-cell--derived neural cells for transplantation therapies for PD patients. AREAS COVERED: This review article emphasizes the safety and efficacy requirements of human pluripotent stem-cell--derived neural cells and usage of reliable preclinical animal models prior to clinical trials. The current advances and hurdles related to cell production, differentiation and transplantation are also summarized. EXPERT OPINION: Before entering the clinic, transplantable cell populations must be differentiated and characterized according to good manufacturing practice (GMP) regulations both in vitro and in vivo. Taking into account the rapid development of the stem-cell field and technological improvements in cell preparations and GMP facilities, we think that pluripotent stem-cell--derived DA neurons will offer a relevant cell therapy option for treatment of PD in the near future. PMID: 24437368 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Evaluation of neuroprotective effect of glucagon-like peptide 1 analogs using neuroimaging. Alzheimers Dement. 2014 Feb;10(1 Suppl):S55-61 Authors: Femminella GD, Edison P Abstract There is increasing evidence to suggest that glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP1) analogs are neuroprotective in animal models. In transgenic mice, both insulin and GLP1 analogs reduced inflammation, increased stem cell proliferation, reduced apoptosis, and increased dendritic growth. Furthermore, insulin desensitization was also observed in these animals, and reduced glucose uptake in the brain, as shown on FDG-PET imaging. In this review we discussed the role of PET and MRI in evaluating the effect of GLP1 analogs in disease progression in both Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. We have also discussed the potential novel PET markers that will allow us to understand the mechanism by which GLP1 exerts its effects. PMID: 24529526 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles New research holds promise for Parkinson's treatment. New drugs and stem cell research offer encouraging glimpses of future therapies. Duke Med Health News. 2013 Dec;19(12):1-2 Authors: PMID: 24616930 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Neuroprotective effects of mesenchymal stem cells through autophagy modulation in a parkinsonian model. Neurobiol Aging. 2014 Aug;35(8):1920-8 Authors: Park HJ, Shin JY, Kim HN, Oh SH, Lee PH Abstract Autophagy is a major degradation pathway for abnormal aggregated proteins and organelles that cause various neurodegenerative diseases. Current evidence suggests a central role for autophagy in pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease, and that dysfunction in the autophagic system may lead to α-synuclein accumulation. In the present study, we investigated whether mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) would enhance autophagy and thus exert a neuroprotective effect through the modulation of α-synuclein in parkinsonian models. In MPP(+)-treated neuronal cells, coculture with MSCs increased cellular viability, attenuated expression of α-synuclein, and enhanced the number of LC3-II-positive autophagosomes compared with cells treated with MPP(+) only. In an MPTP-treated animal model of Parkinson's disease, MSC administration significantly increased final maturation of late autophagic vacuoles, fusion with lysosomes. Moreover, MSC administration significantly reduced the level of α-synuclein in dopaminergic neurons, which was elevated in MPTP-treated mice. These results suggest that MSC treatment significantly enhances autophagolysosome formation and may modulate α-synuclein expression in parkinsonian models, which may lead to increased neuronal survival in the presence of neurotoxins. PMID: 24629674 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles BAX channel activity mediates lysosomal disruption linked to Parkinson disease. Autophagy. 2014 May;10(5):889-900 Authors: Bové J, Martínez-Vicente M, Dehay B, Perier C, Recasens A, Bombrun A, Antonsson B, Vila M Abstract Lysosomal disruption is increasingly regarded as a major pathogenic event in Parkinson disease (PD). A reduced number of intraneuronal lysosomes, decreased levels of lysosomal-associated proteins and accumulation of undegraded autophagosomes (AP) are observed in PD-derived samples, including fibroblasts, induced pluripotent stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons, and post-mortem brain tissue. Mechanistic studies in toxic and genetic rodent PD models attribute PD-related lysosomal breakdown to abnormal lysosomal membrane permeabilization (LMP). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying PD-linked LMP and subsequent lysosomal defects remain virtually unknown, thereby precluding their potential therapeutic targeting. Here we show that the pro-apoptotic protein BAX (BCL2-associated X protein), which permeabilizes mitochondrial membranes in PD models and is activated in PD patients, translocates and internalizes into lysosomal membranes early following treatment with the parkinsonian neurotoxin MPTP, both in vitro and in vivo, within a time-frame correlating with LMP, lysosomal disruption, and autophagosome accumulation and preceding mitochondrial permeabilization and dopaminergic neurodegeneration. Supporting a direct permeabilizing effect of BAX on lysosomal membranes, recombinant BAX is able to induce LMP in purified mouse brain lysosomes and the latter can be prevented by pharmacological blockade of BAX channel activity. Furthermore, pharmacological BAX channel inhibition is able to prevent LMP, restore lysosomal levels, reverse AP accumulation, and attenuate mitochondrial permeabilization and overall nigrostriatal degeneration caused by MPTP, both in vitro and in vivo. Overall, our results reveal that PD-linked lysosomal impairment relies on BAX-induced LMP, and point to small molecules able to block BAX channel activity as potentially beneficial to attenuate both lysosomal defects and neurodegeneration occurring in PD. PMID: 24686337 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles NIH stem-cell programme closes. Nature. 2014 Apr 10;508(7495):157 Authors: Reardon S PMID: 24717485 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Functional Role of Parkin against Oxidative Stress in Neural Cells. Endocrinol Metab (Seoul). 2014 Mar;29(1):62-9 Authors: Hwang M, Lee JM, Kim Y, Geum D Abstract BACKGROUND: Parkinson disease (PD) is caused by selective cell death of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. An early onset form of PD, autosomal recessive juvenile parkinsonism has been associated with a mutation in the parkin gene. The function of parkin is known to remove misfolding proteins and protect cell death. We aimed to investigate the role of parkin against oxidative stress in neuronal cells. METHODS: Parkin knockout embryonic stem cells (PKO ES cells) were differentiated into neurons by adherent monolayer culture method. Oxidative stress was induced by the treatment of 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+)) in neurons derived from wild type and PKO ES cells, and cell viability was examined by MTT assay. After exposure to MPP(+), Tuj1-positive cell population was compared between PKO and wild type cells by fluorescence activated cell sorter (FACS) analysis. The activated caspase3 protein level was also measured by Western blot analysis, FACS and immunocytochemistry. RESULTS: There was no difference in the efficiency of neuronal differentiation between wild type and PKO ES cells. After exposure to MPP(+), no significant differences were found in cell viability and Tuj1-positive cell population between the two groups determined by MTT assay and FACS analysis, respectively. The activated caspase3 protein levels examined by Western blot analysis, FACS and immunocytochemistry were not changed in PKO cells compared with those of wild type cells after MPP(+) treatment. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that PKO neuronal cells including dopaminergic neurons are not sensitive to caspase3-dependent cell death pathway during the response against MPP(+)-induced oxidative stress. PMID: 24741456 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Human neural stem cells survive long term in the midbrain of dopamine-depleted monkeys after GDNF overexpression and project neurites toward an appropriate target. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2014 Jun;3(6):692-701 Authors: Wakeman DR, Redmond DE, Dodiya HB, Sladek JR, Leranth C, Teng YD, Samulski RJ, Snyder EY Abstract Transplanted multipotent human fetal neural stem cells (hfNSCs) significantly improved the function of parkinsonian monkeys in a prior study primarily by neuroprotection, with only 3%-5% of cells expressing a dopamine (DA) phenotype. In this paper, we sought to determine whether further manipulation of the neural microenvironment by overexpression of a developmentally critical molecule, glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), in the host striatum could enhance DA differentiation of hfNSCs injected into the substantia nigra and elicit growth of their axons to the GDNF-expressing target. hfNSCs were transplanted into the midbrain of 10 green monkeys exposed to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydro-pyridine. GDNF was delivered concomitantly to the striatum via an adeno-associated virus serotype 5 vector, and the fate of grafted cells was assessed after 11 months. Donor cells remained predominantly within the midbrain at the injection site and sprouted numerous neurofilament-immunoreactive fibers that appeared to course rostrally toward the striatum in parallel with tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive fibers from the host substantia nigra but did not mature into DA neurons. This work suggests that hfNSCs can generate neurons that project long fibers in the adult primate brain. However, in the absence of region-specific signals and despite GDNF overexpression, hfNSCs did not differentiate into mature DA neurons in large numbers. It is encouraging, however, that the adult primate brain appeared to retain axonal guidance cues. We believe that transplantation of stem cells, specifically instructed ex vivo to yield DA neurons, could lead to reconstruction of some portion of the nigrostriatal pathway and prove beneficial for the parkinsonian condition. PMID: 24744393 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Potential for cell therapy in Parkinson's disease using genetically programmed human embryonic stem cell-derived neural progenitor cells. J Comp Neurol. 2014 Aug 15;522(12):2845-56 Authors: Ambasudhan R, Dolatabadi N, Nutter A, Masliah E, Mckercher SR, Lipton SA Abstract Neural transplantation is a promising strategy for restoring dopaminergic dysfunction and modifying disease progression in Parkinson's disease (PD). Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are a potential resource in this regard because of their ability to provide a virtually limitless supply of homogenous dopaminergic progenitors and neurons of appropriate lineage. The recent advances in developing robust cell culture protocols for directed differentiation of hESCs to near pure populations of ventral mesencephalic (A9-type) dopaminergic neurons has heightened the prospects for PD cell therapy. Here, we focus our review on current state-of-the-art techniques for harnessing hESC-based strategies toward development of a stem cell therapeutic for PD. Importantly, we also briefly describe a novel genetic-programming approach that may address many of the key challenges that remain in the field and that may hasten clinical translation. PMID: 24756727 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Brn4 and TH synergistically promote the differentiation of neural stem cells into dopaminergic neurons. Neurosci Lett. 2014 Jun 13;571:23-8 Authors: Tan X, Zhang L, Zhu H, Qin J, Tian M, Dong C, Li H, Jin G Abstract Neural stem cells (NSCs) are pluripotent cells capable of differentiation into dopaminergic (DA) neurons, which are the major cell types damaged in Parkinson's disease (PD). Therefore, NSCs are considered the most promising cell source for cell replacement therapy of PD. However, the poor differentiation and maturation of DA neurons and decreased cell survival after transplantation are a challenge. We have previously demonstrated that Brn4, a member of the POU domain family of transcription factors, induced the differentiation of NSCs into neurons and promoted their maturation. In this study, we directly transduced tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate-limiting enzyme in dopamine biosynthesis, into NSCs to induce DA neuronal differentiation. However, these DA neurons were morphologically immature and seldom expressed dopamine transporter (DAT), a late marker of mature DA neurons. In contrast, TH co-transfected with Brn4 generated increased number of mature DA neurons. Furthermore, Brn4 significantly induced the expression of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) with its receptors GFRα-1 and Ret, which may contribute to the maturation and survival of differentiated DA neurons. Our findings may be of future importance for the use of NSCs in cell replacement therapy of PD. PMID: 24769320 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles The c-Abl inhibitor, nilotinib, protects dopaminergic neurons in a preclinical animal model of Parkinson's disease. Sci Rep. 2014;4:4874 Authors: Karuppagounder SS, Brahmachari S, Lee Y, Dawson VL, Dawson TM, Ko HS Abstract c-Abl is activated in the brain of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients and in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-intoxicated mice where it inhibits parkin through tyrosine phosphorylation leading to the accumulation of parkin substrates, and neuronal cell death. In the present study, we evaluated the in vivo efficacy of nilotinib, a brain penetrant c-Abl inhibitor, in the acute MPTP-induced model of PD. Our results show that administration of nilotinib reduces c-Abl activation and the levels of the parkin substrate, PARIS, resulting in prevention of dopamine (DA) neuron loss and behavioral deficits following MPTP intoxication. On the other hand, we observe no reduction in the tyrosine phosphorylation of parkin and the parkin substrate, AIMP2 suggesting that the protective effect of nilotinib may, in part, be parkin-independent or to the pharmacodynamics properties of nilotinib. This study provides a strong rationale for testing other brain permeable c-Abl inhibitors as potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of PD. PMID: 24786396 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Bridging between transplantation therapy and neurotrophic factors in Parkinson's disease. Front Biosci (Elite Ed). 2014;6:225-35 Authors: Ghosh B, Zhang C, Smith GM Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD) represents a challenging condition where different therapeutic options have evolved over the course of the last 50 years. The potential for therapeutic use of cell transplantation for cell replacement or for gene delivery of neurotrophic factors has received a great deal of attention. Currently, all available treatment options are directed towards the amelioration of symptoms. A greater understanding of the distinctive pathology underlying PD might offer some novel therapeutic approaches. Transplantation of embryonic ventral mesencephalon (VM) dopaminergic neurons has shown promise in animal studies, but similar transplant procedures have shown limited success in clinical trials. One important issue may be the site of transplantation. Previous studies have transplanted VM into the striatum, which is the target of these neurons. With increased understanding of growth and guidance molecule effecting dopaminergic neurons, it may be feasible to place transplants in the damaged substantia nigra and direct the growth of axons into target regions to reconstruction of midbrain dopamine (DA) circuitry. Our established and on-going understanding of the molecular cues which support directed growth of DA neurons form an important basis for the refinement and optimization of VM grafting procedures, and also the development of new procedures based on the use of stem cells. In this review, we discuss transplantation therapy and how selective guidance molecules could be used to reconstruction of nigrostriatal circuit. PMID: 24896204 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Fetal-cell revival for Parkinson's. Nature. 2014 Jun 12;510(7504):195-6 Authors: Abbott A PMID: 24919900 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Reducing glypican-4 in ES cells improves recovery in a rat model of Parkinson's disease by increasing the production of dopaminergic neurons and decreasing teratoma formation. J Neurosci. 2014 Jun 11;34(24):8318-23 Authors: Fico A, de Chevigny A, Melon C, Bohic M, Kerkerian-Le Goff L, Maina F, Dono R, Cremer H Abstract The heparan sulfate proteoglycan Glypican 4 (Gpc4) is strongly expressed in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells where it controls the maintenance of self-renewal by modulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling activities. Here we show that mouse ES cells carrying a hypomorphic Gpc4 allele, in a single-step neuronal differentiation protocol, show increased differentiation into dopaminergic neurons expressing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and nuclear receptor related-1 protein (Nurr1) 1. In contrast to wild-type cells, these differentiating Gpc4-mutant cells expressed high levels of DOPA decarboxylase and the dopamine transporter, two markers expressed by fully mature dopaminergic neurons. Intrastriatal transplantation of Gpc4 hypomorphic cells into a 6-OHDA rat model for Parkinson's disease improved motor behavior in the cylinder test and amphetamine-induced rotations at a higher level than transplanted wild-type cells. Importantly, Gpc4 hypomorphic cell grafts, in contrast to wild-type cells, did not generate teratomas in the host brains, leading to strongly enhanced animal survival. Therefore, control of Gpc4 activity level represents a new potential strategy to reduce ES cell tumorigenic features while at the same time increasing neuronal differentiation and integration. PMID: 24920634 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Good practice. Nature. 2014 Jun 12;510(7504):187-8 Authors: PMID: 24926498 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Wetting the whistle: neurotropic factor improves salivary function. J Clin Invest. 2014 Aug 1;124(8):3282-4 Authors: Swick A, Kimple RJ Abstract Xerostomia, or dry mouth, is a common side effect of head and neck radiotherapy, Sjögren syndrome, diabetes, old age, and numerous medications. In this issue of the JCI, Xiao and colleagues identified glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) as a potential stimulus for salivary stem cell growth. Due to its ability to promote neuronal growth, differentiation, and survival, GDNF is currently being used in clinical trials as a treatment for Parkinson disease; therefore, the findings of Xiao and colleagues may initiate a potential treatment for the millions of patients who suffer from xerostomia each year. PMID: 25036702 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Neuroprotective Properties of a Standardized Extract from Myracrodruon urundeuva Fr. All. (Aroeira-Do-Sertão), as Evaluated by a Parkinson's Disease Model in Rats. Parkinsons Dis. 2014;2014:519615 Authors: Calou I, Bandeira MA, Aguiar-Galvão W, Cerqueira G, Siqueira R, Neves KR, Brito GA, Viana G Abstract Myracrodruon urundeuva Fr. All. (Anacardiaceae) is a Brazilian medicinal species, which is common to the Northeastern Brazilian semiarid region, whose stem-bark is widely used in folk medicine. It is an endangered species, presenting as main bioactive components tannins and chalcones. In this work, we studied the neuroprotective effects of a standardized extract from cultivated M. urundeuva (SEMU), in a model of Parkinson's disease. Thus, a unilateral injection of 6-OHDA was done into the rat right stratum. The animals were submitted to stereotaxic surgery, then treated with SEMU (5, 10, 20, or 40 mg/kg, p.o.) for 2 weeks, subjected to behavioral tests, and euthanized for striata dissections and neurochemical, histological, and immunohistochemical analyses. We showed, for the first time, that SEMU reverted behavioral alterations seen in the 6-OHDA-lesioned group and partially blocked the decrease in DA and DOPAC contents. The numbers of viable neurons and TH immunopositive cells were increased by SEMU. In addition, the SEMU-treated 6-OHDA groups showed lower numbers of GFAP and OX-42 immunopositive cells. The neuroprotective action of SEMU is possibly related to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of M. urundeuva, pointing out to its potential use in the prevention or treatment of neurodegenerative conditions, such as Parkinson's disease. PMID: 25061534 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Survival and engraftment of dopaminergic neurons manufactured by a Good Manufacturing Practice-compatible process. Cytotherapy. 2014 Sep;16(9):1305-12 Authors: Peng J, Liu Q, Rao MS, Zeng X Abstract BACKGROUND AIMS: We have previously reported a Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP)-compatible process for generating authentic dopaminergic neurons in defined media from human pluripotent stem cells and determined the time point at which dopaminergic precursors/neurons (day 14 after neuronal stem cell [NSC] stage) can be frozen, shipped and thawed without compromising their viability and ability to mature in vitro. One important issue we wished to address is whether dopaminergic precursors/neurons manufactured by our GMP-compatible process can be cryopreserved and engrafted in animal Parkinson disease (PD) models. METHODS: In this study, we evaluated the efficacy of freshly prepared and cryopreserved dopaminergic neurons in the 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rat PD model. RESULTS: We showed functional recovery up to 6 months post-transplantation in rats transplanted with our cells, whether freshly prepared or cryopreserved. In contrast, no motor improvement was observed in two control groups receiving either medium or cells at a slightly earlier stage (day 10 after NSC stage). Histologic analysis at the end point of the study (6 months post-transplantation) showed robust long-term survival of donor-derived tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)(+) dopaminergic neurons in rats transplanted with day 14 dopaminergic neurons. Moreover, TH(+) fibers emanated from the graft core into the surrounding host striatum. Consistent with the behavioral analysis, no or few TH(+) neurons were detected in animals receiving day 10 cells, although human cells were present in the graft. Importantly, no tumors were detected in any grafted rats, but long-term tumorigenic studies will need to determine the safety of our products. CONCLUSIONS: Dopaminergic neurons manufactured by a GMP-compatible process from human ESC survived and engrafted efficiently in the 6-OHDA PD rat model. PMID: 25065637 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Opposite effects of bone marrow-derived cells transplantation in MPTP-rat model of Parkinson's disease: a comparison study of mononuclear and mesenchymal stem cells. Int J Med Sci. 2014;11(10):1049-64 Authors: Capitelli CS, Lopes CS, Alves AC, Barbiero J, Oliveira LF, da Silva VJ, Vital MA Abstract The 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) animal model is a useful tool to study Parkinson's disease (PD) and was used in the present study to investigate the potential beneficial as well as deleterious effects of systemic bone-marrow mononuclear cell (BMMC) or mesenchymal stem cell (BM-MSC) transplantation. MPTP administration resulted in a breakdown of the blood-brain barrier and motor impairment in the open field test 24 h after surgery. Three and 7 days after receiving the lesion, the injured animals showed remaining motor impairment compared to the sham groups along with a significant loss of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive (TH-ir) cells in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). The MPTP-lesioned rats treated with BMMCs immediately after lesioning exhibited motor impairment similar to the MPTP-saline group, though they presented a significantly higher loss of TH-ir cells in the SNpc compared to the MPTP-saline group. This increased loss of TH-ir cells in the SNpc was not observed when BMMC transplantation was performed 24 h after MPTP administration. In contrast, in the MPTP animals treated early with systemic BM-MSCs, no loss of TH-ir cells was observed. BMMCs and BM-MSCs previously labeled with CM-DiI cell tracker were found in brain sections of all transplanted animals. In addition, cells expressing CD45, an inflammatory white blood cell marker, were found in all brain sections analyzed and were more abundant in the MPTP-BMMC animals. In these animals, Iba1+ microglial cells showed also marked morphological changes indicating increased microglial activation. These results show that systemic BMMC transplantation did not ameliorate or prevent the lesion induced by MPTP. Instead, BMMC transplantation in MPTP-lesioned rats accelerated dopaminergic neuronal damage and induced motor impairment and immobility behavior. These findings suggest that caution should be taken when considering cell therapy using BMMCs to treat PD. However, systemic BM-MSC transplantation that reaches the injury site and prevents neuronal damage after an MPTP infusion could be considered as a potential treatment for PD during the early stage of disease development. PMID: 25136260 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Regionally-specified second trimester fetal neural stem cells reveals differential neurogenic programming. PLoS One. 2014;9(9):e105985 Authors: Fan Y, Marcy G, Lee ES, Rozen S, Mattar CN, Waddington SN, Goh EL, Choolani M, Chan JK Abstract Neural stem/progenitor cells (NSC) have the potential for treatment of a wide range of neurological diseases such as Parkinson Disease and multiple sclerosis. Currently, NSC have been isolated only from hippocampus and subventricular zone (SVZ) of the adult brain. It is not known whether NSC can be found in all parts of the developing mid-trimester central nervous system (CNS) when the brain undergoes massive transformation and growth. Multipotent NSC from the mid-trimester cerebra, thalamus, SVZ, hippocampus, thalamus, cerebellum, brain stem and spinal cord can be derived and propagated as clonal neurospheres with increasing frequencies with increasing gestations. These NSC can undergo multi-lineage differentiation both in vitro and in vivo, and engraft in a developmental murine model. Regionally-derived NSC are phenotypically distinct, with hippocampal NSC having a significantly higher neurogenic potential (53.6%) over other sources (range of 0%-27.5%, p<0.004). Whole genome expression analysis showed differential gene expression between these regionally-derived NSC, which involved the Notch, epidermal growth factor as well as interleukin pathways. We have shown the presence of phenotypically-distinct regionally-derived NSC from the mid-trimester CNS, which may reflect the ontological differences occurring within the CNS. Aside from informing on the role of such cells during fetal growth, they may be useful for different cellular therapy applications. PMID: 25181041 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Japan stem-cell trial stirs envy. Nature. 2014 Sep 18;513(7518):287-8 Authors: Reardon S, Cyranoski D PMID: 25230622 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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Related Articles Endometrial stem cell transplantation in MPTP- exposed primates: an alternative cell source for treatment of Parkinson's disease. J Cell Mol Med. 2014 Oct 6; Authors: Wolff EF, Mutlu L, Massasa EE, Elsworth JD, Eugene Redmond D, Taylor HS Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease caused by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. Cell-replacement therapies have emerged as a promising strategy to slow down or replace neuronal loss. Compared to other stem cell types, endometrium-derived stem cells (EDSCs) are an attractive source of stem cells for cellular therapies because of their ease of collection and vast differentiation potential. Here we demonstrate that endometrium-derived stem cells may be transplanted into an MPTP exposed monkey model of PD. After injection into the striatum, endometrium-derived stem cells engrafted, exhibited neuron-like morphology, expressed tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and increased the numbers of TH positive cells on the transplanted side and dopamine metabolite concentrations in vivo. Our results suggest that endometrium-derived stem cells may provide a therapeutic benefit in the primate model of PD and may be used in stem cell based therapies. PMID: 25283241 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
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Related Articles Intranasal delivery of bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells, macrophages, and microglia to the brain in mouse models of Alzheimer?s and Parkinson?s disease. Cell Transplant. 2014 Oct 9; Authors: Danielyan L, Beer-Hammer S, Stolzing A, Sch Fer R, Siegel G, Fabian C, Kahle P, Biedermann T, Lourhmati A, Buadze M, Novakovic A, Proksch B, Gleiter CH, Ii WH, Schwab M Abstract In view of the rapid preclinical development of cell-based therapies for neurodegenerative disorders, traumatic brain injury, and tumors, the safe and efficient delivery and targeting of therapeutic cells to the central nervous system is critical for maintaining therapeutic efficacy and safety in the respective disease models. Our previous data demonstrated therapeutically efficacious and targeted delivery of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to the brain in the rat 6-hydroxydopamine model of Parkinson?s disease (PD). The present study examined delivery of bone marrow derived MSCs, macrophages, and microglia to the brain in a transgenic model of PD ((Thy1)-h[A30P] αS) and an APP/PS1 model of Alzheimer?s disease (AD) via intranasal application (INA). INA of microglia in na?ve BL/6 mice led to targeted and effective delivery of cells to the brain. Quantitative PCR analysis of eGFP DNA showed that the brain contained the highest amount of eGFP-microglia (up to 2.1x10(4)) after INA of 1x10(6) cells, while the total amount of cells detected in peripheral organs did not exceed 3.4x10(3). Seven days after INA, MSCs expressing eGFP were detected in the olfactory bulb (OB), cortex, amygdala, striatum, hippocampus, cerebellum, and brainstem of (Thy1)-h[A30P] αS transgenic mice, showing predominant distribution within the OB and brainstem. INA of eGFP-expressing macrophages in 13 month-old APP/PS1 mice led to delivery of cells to the OB, hippocampus, cortex, and cerebellum. Both, MSCs and macrophages contained Iba-1-positive population of small microglia-like cells and Iba-1-negative large rounded cells showing either intracellular Amyloid beta (macrophages in APP/PS1 model) or α-Synuclein (MSCs in (Thy1)-h[A30P] αS model) immunoreactivity. Here we show, for the first time, intranasal delivery of cells to the brain of transgenic PD and AD mouse models. Additional work is needed to determine the optimal dosage (single treatment regimen or repeated administrations) to achieve functional improvement in these mouse models with intranasal microglia/macrophages and MSCs. This manuscript is published as part of the International Association of Neurorestoratology (IANR) special issue of Cell Transplantation. PMID: 25302802 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
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Related Articles Human Wharton?s jelly-derived stem cells display immunomodulatory properties and transiently improve rat experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Cell Transplant. 2014 Oct 10; Authors: Donders R, Vanheusden M, Bogie JF, Ravanidis S, Thewissen K, Stinissen P, Gyselaers W, Hendriks JJ, Hellings N Abstract Umbilical cord matrix or Wharton?s jelly-derived stromal cells (WJ-MSCs) are an easily accessible source of mesenchymal-like stem cells. Recent studies describe a hypo-immunogenic phenotype, multipotent differentiation potential and trophic support function for WJ-MSCs, with variable clinical benefit in degenerative disease models such as stroke, myocardial infarction and Parkinson?s disease. It remains unclear whether WJ-MSCs have therapeutic value for multiple sclerosis (MS), where autoimmune-mediated demyelination and neurodegeneration need to be halted. In this study, we investigated whether WJ-MSCs possess the required properties to effectively and durably reverse these pathological hallmarks, and whether they survive in an inflammatory environment after transplantation. WJ-MSCs displayed a lowly immunogenic phenotype and showed intrinsic expression of neurotrophic factors and a variety of anti-inflammatory molecules. Furthermore, they dose-dependently suppressed proliferation of activated T cells using contact-dependent and paracrine mechanisms. Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase 1 was identified as one of the main effector molecules responsible for the observed T cell suppression. The immune-modulatory phenotype of WJ-MSCs was further enhanced after pro-inflammatory cytokine treatment in vitro (licensing). In addition to their effect on adaptive immunity, WJ-MSCs interfered with dendritic cell differentiation and maturation, thus directly affecting antigen presentation and therefore T cell priming. Systemically infused WJ-MSCs potently but transiently ameliorated experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model for MS, when injected at onset or during chronic disease. This protective effect was paralleled with a reduction in autoantigen-induced T cell proliferation, confirming their immune-modulatory activity in vivo. Surprisingly, in vitro licensed WJ-MSCs did not ameliorate EAE, indicative of a fast rejection as a result of enhanced immunogenicity. Collectively, we show that WJ-MSCs have trophic support properties and effectively modulate immune cell functioning both in vitro and in the EAE model, suggesting WJ-MSC may hold promise for MS therapy. Future research is needed to optimize survival of stem cells and enhance clinical durability. PMID: 25310756 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
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Related Articles The potential of alternate sources of cells for neural grafting in Parkinson's and Huntington's disease. Neurodegener Dis Manag. 2014 Aug;4(4):297-307 Authors: Drouin-Ouellet J Abstract SUMMARY  Cell-based therapies for Parkinson's and Huntington's disease have provided mixed clinical outcomes and one of the reasons underlying this is the use of primary fetal tissue as the source of grafted cells. An alternate source of cells, such as stem cells, could overcome many of the issues associated with primary fetal tissue and would help bring forward cell replacement therapy as a reliable and effective treatment for these two neurodegenerative disorders. This review will discuss which stem cells are likely to go to clinic in the next generation of cells, based on trials for Parkinson's and Huntington's disease. PMID: 25313986 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Potential of caveolae in the therapy of cardiovascular and neurological diseases. Front Physiol. 2014;5:370 Authors: Navarro G, Borroto-Escuela DO, Fuxe K, Franco R Abstract Caveolae are membrane micro-domains enriched in cholesterol, sphingolipids and caveolins, which are transmembrane proteins with a hairpin-like structure. Caveolae participate in receptor-mediated trafficking of cell surface receptors and receptor-mediated signaling. Furthermore, caveolae participate in clathrin-independent endocytosis of membrane receptors. On the one hand, caveolins are involved in vascular and cardiac dysfunction. Also, neurological abnormalities in caveolin-1 knockout mice and a link between caveolin-1 gene haplotypes and neurodegenerative diseases have been reported. The aim of this article is to present the rationale for considering caveolae as potential targets in cardiovascular and neurological diseases. PMID: 25324780 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Dopamine release from transplanted neural stem cells in Parkinsonian rat striatum in vivo. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Nov 4;111(44):15804-9 Authors: Kang X, Xu H, Teng S, Zhang X, Deng Z, Zhou L, Zuo P, Liu B, Liu B, Wu Q, Wang L, Hu M, Dou H, Liu W, Zhu F, Li Q, Guo S, Gu J, Lei Q, Lü J, Mu Y, Jin M, Wang S, Jiang W, Liu K, Wang C, Li W, Zhang K, Zhou Z Abstract Embryonic stem cell-based therapies exhibit great potential for the treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD) because they can significantly rescue PD-like behaviors. However, whether the transplanted cells themselves release dopamine in vivo remains elusive. We and others have recently induced human embryonic stem cells into primitive neural stem cells (pNSCs) that are self-renewable for massive/transplantable production and can efficiently differentiate into dopamine-like neurons (pNSC-DAn) in culture. Here, we showed that after the striatal transplantation of pNSC-DAn, (i) pNSC-DAn retained tyrosine hydroxylase expression and reduced PD-like asymmetric rotation; (ii) depolarization-evoked dopamine release and reuptake were significantly rescued in the striatum both in vitro (brain slices) and in vivo, as determined jointly by microdialysis-based HPLC and electrochemical carbon fiber electrodes; and (iii) the rescued dopamine was released directly from the grafted pNSC-DAn (and not from injured original cells). Thus, pNSC-DAn grafts release and reuptake dopamine in the striatum in vivo and alleviate PD symptoms in rats, providing proof-of-concept for human clinical translation. PMID: 25331880 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Adult neurogenesis restores dopaminergic neuronal loss in the olfactory bulb. J Neurosci. 2014 Oct 22;34(43):14430-42 Authors: Lazarini F, Gabellec MM, Moigneu C, de Chaumont F, Olivo-Marin JC, Lledo PM Abstract Subventricular zone (SVZ) neurogenesis continuously provides new GABA- and dopamine (DA)-containing interneurons for the olfactory bulb (OB) in most adult mammals. DAergic interneurons are located in the glomerular layer (GL) where they participate in the processing of sensory inputs. To examine whether adult neurogenesis might contribute to regeneration after circuit injury in mice, we induce DAergic neuronal loss by injecting 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) in the dorsal GL or in the right substantia nigra pars compacta. We found that a 6-OHDA treatment of the OB produces olfactory deficits and local inflammation and partially decreases the number of neurons expressing the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) near the injected site. Blockade of inflammation by minocycline treatment immediately after the 6-OHDA administration rescued neither TH(+) interneuron number nor the olfactory deficits, suggesting that the olfactory impairments are most likely linked to TH(+) cell death and not to microglial activation. TH(+) interneuron number was restored 1 month later. This rescue resulted at least in part from enhanced recruitment of immature neurons targeting the lesioned GL area. Seven days after 6-OHDA lesion in the OB, we found that the integration of lentivirus-labeled adult-born neurons was biased: newly formed neurons were preferentially incorporated into glomerular circuits of the lesioned area. Behavioral rehabilitation occurs 2 months after lesion. This study establishes a new model into which loss of DAergic cells could be compensated by recruiting newly formed neurons. We propose that adult neurogenesis not only replenishes the population of DAergic bulbar neurons but that it also restores olfactory sensory processing. PMID: 25339754 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Stem cell transplantation in neurological diseases: improving effectiveness in animal models. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2014;2:17 Authors: Adami R, Scesa G, Bottai D Abstract Neurological diseases afflict a growing proportion of the human population. There are two reasons for this: first, the average age of the population (especially in the industrialized world) is increasing, and second, the diagnostic tools to detect these pathologies are now more sophisticated and can be used on a higher percentage of the population. In many cases, neurological disease has a pharmacological treatment which, as in the case of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Epilepsy, and Multiple Sclerosis can reduce the symptoms and slow down the course of the disease but cannot reverse its effects or heal the patient. In the last two decades the transplantation approach, by means of stem cells of different origin, has been suggested for the treatment of neurological diseases. The choice of slightly different animal models and the differences in methods of stem cell preparation make it difficult to compare the results of transplantation experiments. Moreover, the translation of these results into clinical trials with human subjects is difficult and has so far met with little success. This review seeks to discuss the reasons for these difficulties by considering the differences between human and animal cells (including isolation, handling and transplantation) and between the human disease model and the animal disease model. PMID: 25364724 [PubMed]
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Related Articles Stem cell therapies for Parkinson's disease: are trials just around the corner? Regen Med. 2014 Sep;9(5):553-5 Authors: Drouin-Ouellet J, Barker RA PMID: 25372072 [PubMed - in process]
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Related Articles Efficient Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells Toward Dopaminergic Neurons Using Recombinant LMX1A Factor. Mol Biotechnol. 2014 Nov 8; Authors: Fathi A, Rasouli H, Yeganeh M, Salekdeh GH, Baharvand H Abstract Direct differentiation of dopaminergic (DA) neurons from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) in the absence of gene manipulation is the most desired alternative to clinical treatment of Parkinson disease. Protein transduction-based methods could be efficient, safe approaches to enhance direct differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to DA neurons. In the present study, we compared the differentiation efficiency of DA neurons from hESCs with and without the application of LIM homeobox transcription factor 1 alpha (LMX1A), a master regulatory protein in the development of the midbrain neurons and SHH proteins. The results obtained revealed that the treatment of hESCs with recombinant LMX1A (rLMX1A) protein along with dual SMAD inhibition led to higher expression of LMX1B, LMX1A, FOXA2, PITX3, EN1, and WNT1 effector endogenous genes and two-fold expression of PITX3. Moreover, the highest expression level of PITX3 and TH was observed when rLMX1A was added to the induction medium supplemented with SHH. To our best knowledge, this is the first report demonstrating the application of TAT-LMX1A recombinant protein to enhance hESC differentiation to DA as shown by the expression of DA specific makers. These findings pave the way for enhancing the differentiation of hESCs to DA neurons safely and efficiently without genetic modification. PMID: 25380985 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
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Related Articles Accelerating neuronal aging in in vitro model brain disorders: a focus on reactive oxygen species. Front Aging Neurosci. 2014;6:292 Authors: Campos PB, Paulsen BS, Rehen SK Abstract In this review, we discuss insights gained through the use of stem cell preparations regarding the modeling of neurological diseases, the need for aging neurons derived from pluripotent stem cells to further advance the study of late-onset adult neurological diseases, and the extent to which mechanisms linked to the mismanagement of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The context of these issues can be revealed using the three disease states of Parkinson's (PD), Alzheimer's (AD), and schizophrenia, as considerable insights have been gained into these conditions through the use of stem cells in terms of disease etiologies and the role of oxidative stress. The latter subject is a primary area of interest of our group. After discussing the molecular models of accelerated aging, we highlight the role of ROS for the three diseases explored here. Importantly, we do not seek to provide an extensive account of all genetic mutations for each of the three disorders discussed in this review, but we aim instead to provide a conceptual framework that could maximize the gains from merging the approaches of stem cell microsystems and the study of oxidative stress in disease in order to optimize therapeutics and determine new molecular targets against oxidative stress that spare stem cell proliferation and development. PMID: 25386139 [PubMed]
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