Stem Cell Treatments for Huntington's Disease

Stem Cell Treatments for Huntington's Disease are Currently Available at SIRM.

Area of the brain most damaged in early Huntington's disease – striatum (shown in purple)

Stem Cell Treatment for Huntingtons

Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative genetic disorder that affects muscle coordination and leads to cognitive decline and dementia. It typically becomes noticeable in middle age. HD is the most common genetic cause of abnormal involuntary writhing movements called chorea, and indeed the disease used to be called Huntington's chorea.

It is much more common in people of Western European descent than in those of Asian or African ancestry. The disease is caused by an autosomal dominant mutation on either of an individual's two copies of a gene called Huntingtin, which means any child of an affected parent has a 50% risk of inheriting the disease. In the rare situations where both parents have an affected copy, the risk increases to 75%, and when either parent has two affected copies, the risk is 100% (all children will be affected). Physical symptoms of Huntington's disease can begin at any age from infancy to old age, but usually begin between 35 and 44 years of age. About 6% of cases start before the age of 21 years with an akinetic-rigid syndrome; they progress faster and vary slightly.

Huntington's Disease treatment studies and stem cell protocols listed below, and at SIRM, we aim to treat Huntington's with Stem Cell Therapy

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Related Articles Guidelines on experimental methods to assess mitochondrial dysfunction in cellular models of neurodegenerative diseases. Cell Death Differ. 2018 03;25(3):542-572 Authors: Connolly NMC, Theurey P, Adam-Vizi V, Bazan NG, Bernardi P, Bolaños JP, Culmsee C, Dawson VL, Deshmukh M, Duchen MR, Düssmann H, Fiskum G, Galindo MF, Hardingham GE, Hardwick JM, Jekabsons MB, Jonas EA, Jordán J, Lipton SA, Manfredi G, Mattson MP, McLaughlin B, Methner A, Murphy AN, Murphy MP, Nicholls DG, Polster BM, Pozzan T, Rizzuto R, Satrústegui J, Slack RS, Swanson RA, Swerdlow RH, Will Y, Ying Z, Joselin A, Gioran A, Moreira Pinho C, Watters O, Salvucci M, Llorente-Folch I, Park DS, Bano D, Ankarcrona M, Pizzo P, Prehn JHM Abstract Neurodegenerative diseases are a spectrum of chronic, debilitating disorders characterised by the progressive degeneration and death of neurons. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been implicated in most neurodegenerative diseases, but in many instances it is unclear whether such dysfunction is a cause or an effect of the underlying pathology, and whether it represents a viable therapeutic target. It is therefore imperative to utilise and optimise cellular models and experimental techniques appropriate to determine the contribution of mitochondrial dysfunction to neurodegenerative disease phenotypes. In this consensus article, we collate details on and discuss pitfalls of existing experimental approaches to assess mitochondrial function in in vitro cellular models of neurodegenerative diseases, including specific protocols for the measurement of oxygen consumption rate in primary neuron cultures, and single-neuron, time-lapse fluorescence imaging of the mitochondrial membrane potential and mitochondrial NAD(P)H. As part of the Cellular Bioenergetics of Neurodegenerative Diseases (CeBioND) consortium ( ), we are performing cross-disease analyses to identify common and distinct molecular mechanisms involved in mitochondrial bioenergetic dysfunction in cellular models of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases. Here we provide detailed guidelines and protocols as standardised across the five collaborating laboratories of the CeBioND consortium, with additional contributions from other experts in the field. PMID: 29229998 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Related Articles Neuroprotective effects of memantine via enhancement of autophagy. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2019 Aug 17;: Authors: Hirano K, Fujimaki M, Sasazawa Y, Yamaguchi A, Ishikawa KI, Miyamoto K, Souma S, Furuya N, Imamichi Y, Yamada D, Saya H, Akamatsu W, Saiki S, Hattori N Abstract INTRODUCTION: Chemical intervention of autophagy has been investigated in clinical trials for various age-related conditions such as sarcopenia and neurodegeneration. However, at present, no autophagy inducer has been established as a disease-modifying agent against neurodegenerative diseases. METHODS: We screened a library consisting of 796 medicines clinically approved (in Japan) for autophagy enhancers as potential neurodegeneration therapeutics using HeLa cells stably expressing green fluorescent protein-microtubule-associated protein light chain 3 (GFP-LC3) followed by an analysis of the molecular mechanisms using various neuronal models. RESULTS: The primary screening identified 152 hits in a static cellular state. A widely available Alzheimer's disease drug, memantine, which antagonizes N-Methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), was one of the hits. Memantine increased the levels of LC3-II in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner, and upregulated autophagic flux. In addition, the pharmacological effects of memantine on autophagy were independent of mTORC1 activity and NMDAR activation. Furthermore, a VPS34 inhibitor suppressed the memantine-induced LC3-II upregulation, suggesting that memantine may affect VPS34 complex activity. Notably, intracellular Huntington's disease-specific aggregates of elongated huntingtin, a well-established autophagy substrate, were significantly decreased by memantine. In addition, memantine enhanced elimination of degraded mitochondrial in neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells of PARK2 or PARK6 patients, who exhibited defective PINK1/parkin-mediated mitophagy, suggests that memantine accelerated the clearance of damaged mitochondria. CONCLUSION: These findings indicate that memantine may be beneficial for the treatment of neurodegeneration characterized by the abnormal accumulation of autophagy or mitophagy substrates. PMID: 31431260 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
Related Articles Gedunin Degrades Aggregates of Mutant Huntingtin Protein and Intranuclear Inclusions via the Proteasomal Pathway in Neurons and Fibroblasts from Patients with Huntington's Disease. Neurosci Bull. 2019 Aug 20;: Authors: Yang W, Xie J, Qiang Q, Li L, Lin X, Ren Y, Ren W, Liu Q, Zhou G, Wei W, Saiyin H, Ma L Abstract Huntington's disease (HD) is a deadly neurodegenerative disease with abnormal expansion of CAG repeats in the huntingtin gene. Mutant Huntingtin protein (mHTT) forms abnormal aggregates and intranuclear inclusions in specific neurons, resulting in cell death. Here, we tested the ability of a natural heat-shock protein 90 inhibitor, Gedunin, to degrade transfected mHTT in Neuro-2a cells and endogenous mHTT aggregates and intranuclear inclusions in both fibroblasts from HD patients and neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients. Our data showed that Gedunin treatment degraded transfected mHTT in Neuro-2a cells, endogenous mHTT aggregates and intranuclear inclusions in fibroblasts from HD patients, and in neurons derived from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients in a dose- and time-dependent manner, and its activity depended on the proteasomal pathway rather than the autophagy route. These findings also showed that although Gedunin degraded abnormal mHTT aggregates and intranuclear inclusions in cells from HD patient, it did not affect normal cells, thus providing a new perspective for using Gedunin to treat HD. PMID: 31432317 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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