Connexin 30 deficiency attenuates A2 astrocyte responses and induces severe neurodegeneration in a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine hydrochloride Parkinson's disease animal model.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:The first pathology observed in Parkinson's disease (PD) is 'dying back' of striatal dopaminergic (DA) terminals. Connexin (Cx)30, an astrocytic gap junction protein, is upregulated in the striatum in PD, but its roles in neurodegeneration remain elusive. We investigated Cx30 function in an acute PD model by administering 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) to wild-type (WT) and Cx30 knockout (KO) mice. METHODS:On days 1 and 7 after MPTP administration, we evaluated changes in astrocytic Cx30, Cx43, glial fibrillary acidic protein, and ionised calcium-binding adapter molecule 1 expression by immunostaining and biochemical analysis. Loss of DA neurons was evaluated by tyrosine hydroxylase immunostaining. Gene expression was analysed using A1, A2, pan-reactive astrocyte microarray gene sets, and M1, M2, and M1/M2 mixed microglial microarray gene sets. Real-time PCR and in situ hybridisation were performed to evaluate glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (Gdnf) and S100a10 expression. Striatal GDNF protein levels were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. RESULTS:MPTP treatment induced upregulation of Cx30 and Cx43 levels in the striatum of WT and KO mice. DA neuron loss was accelerated in Cx30 KO compared with WT mice after MPTP administration, despite no change in the striatal concentration of methyl-4-phenylpyridinium+. Astrogliosis in the striatum of Cx30 KO mice was attenuated by MPTP, whereas microglial activation was unaffected. Microarrays of the striatum showed reduced expression of pan-reactive and A2 astrocyte genes after MPTP treatment in Cx30 KO compared with WT mice, while M1, M2, and M1/M2 mixed microglial gene expression did not change. MPTP reduced the number of striatal astrocytes co-expressing Gdnf mRNA and S100? protein or S100a10 mRNA and S100? protein and also reduced the level of GDNF in the striatum of Cx30 KO compared with WT mice. CONCLUSIONS:These findings indicate that Cx30 plays critical roles in astrocyte neuroprotection in an MPTP PD model.
Project description:Cx30 deficiency induced acceleration of dopaminergic neuron death upon MPTP toxicity. Gene expressions in the striatum of wild type and Cx30 KO mice after MPTP treatment were different in the aspect of neuroprotective A2 response. Overall design: We have resected striata from wild type and Cx30 deficient mice 1 day after MPTP treatment. Each group contained 2 mice. Collected striata were pooled for analysis.
Project description:This study assessed the potential for functional and anatomical recovery of the diseased aged primate nigrostriatal system, in response to trophic factor gene transfer. Aged rhesus monkeys received a single intracarotid infusion of MPTP, followed one week later by MRI-guided stereotaxic intrastriatal and intranigral injections of lentiviral vectors encoding for glial derived neurotrophic factor (lenti-GDNF) or beta-galactosidase (lenti-LacZ). Functional analysis revealed that the lenti-GDNF, but not lenti-LacZ treated monkeys displayed behavioral improvements that were associated with increased fluorodopa uptake in the striatum ipsilateral to lenti-GDNF treatment. GDNF ELISA of striatal brain samples confirmed increased GDNF expression in lenti-GDNF treated aged animals that correlated with functional improvements and preserved nigrostriatal dopaminergic markers. Our results indicate that the aged primate brain challenged by MPTP administration has the potential to respond to trophic factor delivery and that the degree of neuroprotection depends on GDNF levels.
Project description:Parkinson's disease (PD) is driven by dopaminergic neurodegeneration in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SN) and striatum. Although apoptosis is considered the main neurodegenerative mechanism, other cell death pathways may be involved. In this regard, necroptosis is a regulated form of cell death dependent on receptor interacting protein 3 (RIP3), a protein also implicated in apoptosis and inflammation independently of its pro-necroptotic activity. Here, we explored the role of RIP3 genetic deletion in in vivo and in vitro PD models. Firstly, wild-type (Wt) and RIP3 knockout (RIP3ko) mice were injected intraperitoneally with MPTP (40 mg/kg, i.p.), and sacrificed after either 6 or 30 days. RIP3ko protected from dopaminergic neurodegeneration in the SN of MPTP-injected mice, but this effect was independent of necroptosis. In keeping with this, necrostatin-1s (10 mg/kg/day, i.p.) did not afford full neuroprotection. Moreover, MPTP led to DNA fragmentation, caspase-3 activation, lipid peroxidation and BAX expression in Wt mice, in the absence of caspase-8 cleavage, suggesting intrinsic apoptosis. This was mimicked in primary cortical neuronal cultures exposed to the active MPTP metabolite. RIP3 deficiency in cultured cells and in mouse brain abrogated all phenotypes. Curiously, astrogliosis was increased in the striatum of MPTP-injected Wt mice and further exacerbated in RIP3ko mice. This was accompanied by absence of microgliosis and reposition of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) levels in the striata of MPTP-injected RIP3ko mice when compared to MPTP-injected Wt mice, which in turn showed a massive GDNF decrease. RIP3ko primary mixed glial cultures also presented decreased expression of inflammation-related genes upon inflammatory stimulation. These findings hint at possible undescribed non-necroptotic roles for RIP3 in inflammation and MPTP-driven cell death, which can contribute to PD progression.
Project description:Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has potent neurotrophic effects and is known to promote the dopaminergic (DA) neuronal survival in cellular and animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD). However, long-term ectopic GDNF delivery is associated with long lasting adverse side effects in PD patients. Therefore, finding safer and effective ways to elevate endogenous GDNF levels is an active area of research. This study underlines the importance of sodium benzoate (NaB), a metabolite of commonly-used spice cinnamon, a food-additive and an FDA-approved drug against hyperammonemia, in stimulating GDNF in primary mouse and human astrocytes. Presence of cAMP response element (CRE) in the Gdnf gene promoter, recruitment of CREB to the Gdnf promoter by NaB and abrogation of NaB-mediated GDNF expression by siRNA knockdown of CREB suggest that NaB induces the transcription of Gdnf via CREB. Finally, oral administration of NaB and cinnamon itself increased the level of GDNF in vivo in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) of normal as well as MPTP-intoxicated mice. Accordingly, cinnamon and NaB treatment protected tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons in the SNpc and fibers in the striatum, normalized striatal neurotransmitters, and improved locomotor activities in MPTP-intoxicated Gfapcre mice, but not Gdnf?astro mice lacking GDNF in astrocytes. These findings highlight the importance of astroglial GDNF in cinnamon- and NaB-mediated protection of the nigrostriatum in MPTP mouse model of PD and suggest possible therapeutic potential of cinnamon and NaB in PD patients. Graphical abstract Cinnamon metabolite sodium benzoate (NaB) activates cAMP-response element-binding (CREB) via protein kinase A (PKA) in astrocytes. Activated CREB then binds to cAMP-response element (CRE) present in GDNF gene promoter to stimulate the transcription of GDNF in astrocytes. This astrocytic GDNF leads to nigral trophism and protects dopaminergic neurons from MPTP insult.
Project description:Activation of the RET (rearranged during transfection) receptor by glial cell-line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has been identified as an important differentiation and survival factor for dopaminergic neurons of the midbrain in preclinical experiments. These encouraging results have led to clinical trials of GDNF in patients with Parkinson's disease, which have resulted in conflicting findings. To investigate the potential benefit of Ret-dependent signaling on the challenged dopaminergic system, we tested the effect of tissue-selective ablation of the Ret gene on 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) toxicity in mice, the most widely used animal model for Parkinson's disease. Ablation of Ret did not modify the MPTP-induced loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta and the dopaminergic innervation of the striatum at 14 days. However, Ret ablation abolished the regeneration of dopaminergic fibers and terminals, as well as the partial recovery of striatal dopamine concentrations, that was observed in control mice between days 14 and 90 after MPTP treatment. We therefore conclude that RET signaling has no influence on the survival of dopaminergic neurons in the MPTP model of Parkinson's disease but rather facilitates the regeneration of dopaminergic axon terminals.
Project description:Motor dysfunction is a hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD); however, non-motor symptoms such as gastrointestinal dysfunction often arise prior to motor symptoms. Alterations in the gut microbiome have been proposed as the earliest event in PD pathogenesis. PD symptoms often demonstrate sex differences. Glutamatergic neurotransmission has long been linked to PD pathology. Metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGlu), a family of G protein-coupled receptors, are divided into three groups, with group III mGlu receptors mainly localized presynaptically where they can inhibit glutamate release in the CNS as well as in the gut. Additionally, the gut microbiome can communicate with the CNS via the gut-brain axis. Here, we assessed whether deficiency of metabotropic glutamate receptor 8 (mGlu8), group III mGlu, modulates the effects of the neurotoxin, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), on behavioral and cognitive performance in female and male mice. We studied whether these effects are associated with changes in striatal tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) levels and the gut microbiome. Two-week sub-chronic MPTP increased activity of female and male wild-type (WT) and mGlu8 knockout (KO) mice in the open field. MPTP also showed genotype- and sex-dependent effects. MPTP increased the time WT, but not KO, females and males spent exploring objects. In WT mice, MPTP improved sensorimotor function in males but impaired it in females. Further, MPTP impaired cued fear memory in WT, but not KO, male mice. MPTP reduced striatal TH levels in WT and KO mice but these effects were only pronounced in males. MPTP treatment and genotype affected the diversity of the gut microbiome. In addition, there were significant associations between microbiome ?-diversity and sensorimotor performance, as well as microbiome composition and fear learning. These results indicate that specific taxa may directly affect motor and fear learning or that the same physiological effects that enhance both forms of learning also alter diversity of the gut microbiome. MPTP's effect on motor and cognitive performance may then be, at least in part, be mediated by the gut microbiome. These data also support mGlu8 as a novel therapeutic target for PD and highlight the importance of including both sexes in preclinical studies.
Project description:Glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has shown beneficial effects in models of Parkinson's disease. The mild results observed in the double-blind clinical trial by intraputamenal infusion of recombinant GDNF proteins warrant a search for alternative delivery methods. In this study, we investigated the function of autologous mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) expressing GDNF (GDNF-MSCs) for protection against MPTP-induced injury in cynomolgus monkeys. MSCs were obtained from the bone marrow of individual monkeys and gene-modified to express GDNF. Following unilateral engraftment of GDNF-MSCs into the striatum and substantia nigra, the animals were challenged with MPTP to induce a stable systemic Parkinsonian state. The motor functions were spared in the contralateral limbs of monkeys receiving GDNF-MSCs, but not in those receiving MSCs alone. In the striatum of the grafted hemisphere, dopamine levels were higher and dopamine uptake was enhanced. The results suggest that autologous MSCs may be a safe vehicle to deliver GDNF for enhancing nigro-striatum functions.
Project description:Current gene therapy approaches for Parkinson's disease (PD) deliver neurotrophic factors like glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) or neurturin via neuronal transgene expression. Since these potent signaling-inducing neurotrophic factors can be distributed through long-distance neuronal projections to unaffected brain sites, this mode of delivery may eventually cause side effects. To explore a localized and thus potentially safer alternative for gene therapy of PD, we expressed GDNF exclusively in astrocytes and evaluated the efficacy of this approach in the mouse 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and rat 6-hydroxy-dopamine (6-OHDA) models of PD. In terms of protection of dopaminergic cell bodies and projections, dopamine (DA) synthesis and behaviour, astrocyte-derived GDNF demonstrated the same efficacy as neuron-derived GDNF. In terms of safety, unilateral striatal GDNF expression in astrocytes did not result in delivery of bio-active GDNF to the contralateral hemispheres (potential off-target sites) as happened when GDNF was expressed in neurons. Thus, astrocytic GDNF expression represents a localized but efficient alternative to current gene therapeutic strategies for the treatment of PD, especially if viral vectors with enhanced tissue penetration are considered. Astrocytic neurotrophic factor expression may open new venues for neurotrophic factor-based gene therapy targeting severe diseases of the brain.
Project description:The motor cortico-basal ganglion loop is critical for motor planning, execution, and learning. Balanced excitation and inhibition in this loop is crucial for proper motor output. Excitatory neurons have been thought to be the only source of motor cortical input to the striatum. Here, we identify long-range projecting GABAergic neurons in the primary (M1) and secondary (M2) motor cortex that target the dorsal striatum. This population of projecting GABAergic neurons comprises both somatostatin-positive (SOM<sup>+</sup>) and parvalbumin-positive (PV<sup>+</sup>) neurons that target direct and indirect pathway striatal output neurons as well as cholinergic interneurons differentially. Notably, optogenetic stimulation of M1 PV<sup>+</sup> and M2 SOM<sup>+</sup> projecting neurons reduced locomotion, whereas stimulation of M1 SOM<sup>+</sup> projecting neurons enhanced locomotion. Thus, corticostriatal GABAergic projections modulate striatal output and motor activity.
Project description:There is increasing evidence that glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) plays a role as a limiting, striatal target-derived neurotrophic factor for dopamine neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) by regulating the magnitude of the first phase of postnatal natural cell death which occurs in these neurons. While it has been shown that GDNF mRNA is relatively abundant in postnatal striatum, the cellular basis of its expression has been unknown. We therefore used nonradioactive in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry to examine the cellular basis of GDNF mRNA and protein expression, respectively, in postnatal striatum and related structures. We found that GDNF mRNA is expressed within medium-sized striatal neurons. Expression in glia was not observed. At the protein level, regionally, GDNF expression in striatum was observed in striosomal patches, as previously described. At a cellular level a few neurons were observed, but they do not account for the striosomal pattern. This pattern is predominantly due to GDNF-positive neuropil. Some of this neuropil arises from tyrosine hydroxylase-positive nigro-striatal dopaminergic afferents. Astrocytic processes do not appear to contribute to the striosomal pattern. GDNF-positive fibers are identified not only within intrinsic striatal neuropil, but also in fibers within the major striatal efferent targets: the globus pallidus, the entopeduncular nucleus, and the SN pars reticulata. We conclude that during normal postnatal development, medium-sized neurons are the principal source of GDNF within the striatum.