Project description:Macrophages and microglia are the major cell types infected by human immunodeficiency virus and simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) in the central nervous system. Microglia are likely infected in vivo, but evidence of widespread productive infection (ie, presence of viral RNA and protein) is lacking. This conclusion is controversial because, unlike lymphocytes, macrophages and microglia cannot be discreetly immunophenotyped. Of particular interest in the search for additional monocyte/macrophage-lineage cell markers is CD163; this receptor for haptoglobin-hemoglobin (Hp-Hb) complex, which forms in plasma following erythrolysis, is expressed exclusively on cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage. We examined CD163 expression in vitro and in vivo by multiple techniques and at varying times after SIV infection in macaques with or without encephalitis. In normal and acutely SIV-infected animals, and in SIV-infected animals without encephalitis, CD163 expression was detected in cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage, including perivascular macrophages, but not in parenchymal microglia. However, in chronically infected animals with encephalitis, CD163 expression was detected in activated microglia surrounding SIV encephalitis lesions in the presence of Hp-Hb complex, suggesting leakage of the blood-brain barrier. CD163 expression was also induced on microglia in vitro after stimulation with Hp-Hb complex. We conclude that CD163 is a selective marker of perivascular macrophages in normal macaques and during the early phases of SIV infection; however, later in infection in animals with encephalitis, CD163 is also expressed by microglia, which are probably activated as a result of vascular compromise.
Project description:Traumatic spinal cord injury causes an inflammatory reaction involving blood-derived macrophages and central nervous system (CNS)-resident microglia. Intra-vital two-photon microscopy enables the study of macrophages and microglia in the spinal cord lesion in the living animal. This can be performed in adult animals with a traumatic injury to the dorsal column. Here, we describe methods for distinguishing macrophages from microglia in the CNS using an irradiation bone marrow chimera to obtain animals in which only macrophages or microglia are labeled with a genetically encoded green fluorescent protein. We also describe a injury model that crushes the dorsal column of the spinal cord, thereby producing a simple, easily accessible, rectangular lesion that is easily visualized in an animal through a laminectomy. Furthermore, we will outline procedures to sequentially image the animals at the anatomical site of injury for the study of cellular interactions during the first few days to weeks after injury.
Project description:Fractalkine (FKN) is a chemokine expressed constitutively by healthy neurons and signals to microglia upon interaction with the FKN receptor, CX3CR1. Signaling between FKN and CX3CR1 transduces inhibitory signals that ameliorate microglial activation and proinflammatory cytokine release in neuroinflammatory conditions. The aim of this study is to determine the mechanisms associated with microglial activation and vascular leakage during diabetic retinopathy (DR) and under conditions of low-level endotoxemia, common in diabetic patients. Utilizing the Ins2Akita strain (Akita), a mouse model of type 1 diabetes, our results show that leakage of the blood-protein fibrin(ogen) into the retina occurs as a result of chronic (4 months) but not acute (1.5 months) hyperglycemia. Conversely, inducing endotoxin-mediated systemic inflammation during acute diabetes resulted in fibrinogen deposition in the retina, a phenotype that was exacerbated in mice lacking CX3CR1 signaling. Systemic inflammation in Cx3cr1-/- mice led to robust perivascular clustering of proliferating microglia in areas of fibrinogen extravasation, and induced IL-1β expression in microglia and astrocytes. Lastly, we determined a protective effect of modulating FKN/CX3CR1 signaling in the diabetic retina. We show that intravitreal (iv) administration of recombinant FKN into diabetic FKN-KO mice, reduced fibrinogen deposition and perivascular clustering of microglia in the retina during systemic inflammation. These data suggest that dysregulated microglial activation via loss of FKN/CX3CR1 signaling disrupts the vascular integrity in retina during systemic inflammation.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Microglia play crucial roles in the maintenance of brain homeostasis. Activated microglia show a biphasic influence, promoting beneficial repair and causing harmful damage via M2 and M1 microglia, respectively. It is well-known that microglia are initially activated to the M2 state and subsequently switch to the M1 state, called M2-to-M1 class switching in acute ischemic models. However, the activation process of microglia in chronic and sporadic hypertension remains poorly understood. We aimed to clarify the process using a chronic hypertension model, the deoxycorticosterone acetate (DOCA)-salt-treated Wistar rats. METHODS:After unilateral nephrectomy, the rats were randomly divided into DOCA-salt, placebo, and control groups. DOCA-salt rats received a weekly subcutaneous injection of DOCA (40 mg/kg) and were continuously provided with 1% NaCl in drinking water. Placebo rats received a weekly subcutaneous injection of vehicle and were provided with tap water. Control rats received no administration of DOCA or NaCl. To investigate the temporal expression profiles of M1- and M2-specific markers for microglia, the animals were subjected to the immunohistochemical and biochemical studies after 2, 3, or 4 weeks DOCA-salt treatment. RESULTS:Hypertension occurred after 2 weeks of DOCA and salt administration, when round-shaped microglia with slightly shortened processes were observed juxtaposed to the vessels, although the histopathological findings were normal. After 3 weeks of DOCA and salt administration, M1-state perivascular and parenchyma microglia significantly increased, when local histopathological findings began to be observed but cerebrovascular destruction did not occur. On the other hand, M2-state microglia were never observed around the vessels at this period. Interestingly, prior to M1 activation, about 55% of perivascular microglia transiently expressed Ki-67, one of the cell proliferation markers. CONCLUSIONS:We concluded that the resting perivascular microglia directly switched to the pro-inflammatory M1 state via a transient proliferative state in DOCA-salt rats. Our results suggest that the activation machinery of microglia in chronic hypertension differs from acute ischemic models. Proliferative microglia are possible initial key players in the development of hypertension-induced cerebral vessel damage. Fine-tuning of microglia proliferation and activation could constitute an innovative therapeutic strategy to prevent its development.
Project description:Brain metastasis is a common complication of cancer patients and is associated with poor survival. Histological data from patients with brain metastases suggest that microglia are the major immune population activated around the metastatic foci. Microglia and macrophages have the ability to polarize to different phenotypes and to exert both tumorigenic and cytotoxic effects. However, the role of microglia/macrophages during the early stages of metastatic growth in the brain has not yet been determined. The aim of this study was to profile microglial/macrophage activation in a mouse model of breast cancer brain metastasis during the early stages of tumor growth, and to assess the role of the anti-inflammatory microglial/macrophage population, specifically, during this phase. Following intracerebral injection of 5?×?103 4T1-GFP mammary carcinoma cells into female BALB/c mice, robust microglial/macrophage activation around the 4T1 metastatic foci was evident throughout the time-course studied (28?days) and correlated positively with tumor volume (R2?=?0.67). Populations of classically (proinflammatory) and alternatively (anti-inflammatory) activated microglia/macrophages were identified immunohistochemically by expression of either induced nitric oxide synthase/cyclooxygenase 2 or mannose receptor 1/arginase 1, respectively. Temporally, levels of both pro- and anti-inflammatory cells were broadly stable across the time-course. Subsequently, selective depletion of the anti-inflammatory microglia/macrophage population by intracerebral injection of mannosylated clodronate liposomes significantly reduced metastatic tumor burden (p?<?0.01). Moreover, increased levels of apoptosis were associated with tumors in clodronate liposome treated animals compared to controls (p?<?0.05). These findings suggest that microglia/macrophages are important effectors of the inflammatory response in the early stages of brain metastasis, and that targeting the anti-inflammatory microglial/macrophage population may offer an effective new therapeutic avenue for patients with brain metastases.
Project description:As the resident macrophages of the brain and spinal cord, microglia are crucial for the phagocytosis of infectious agents, apoptotic cells and synapses. During brain injury or infection, bone-marrow derived macrophages invade neural tissue, making it difficult to distinguish between invading macrophages and resident microglia. In addition to circulation-derived monocytes, other non-microglial central nervous system (CNS) macrophage subtypes include border-associated meningeal, perivascular and choroid plexus macrophages. Using immunofluorescent labeling, flow cytometry and Cre-dependent ribosomal immunoprecipitations, we describe P2ry12-CreER, a new tool for the genetic targeting of microglia. We use this new tool to track microglia during embryonic development and in the context of ischemic injury and neuroinflammation. Because of the specificity and robustness of microglial recombination with P2ry12-CreER, we believe that this new mouse line will be particularly useful for future studies of microglial function in development and disease.
Project description:Microglia are resident mononuclear phagocytes within the CNS parenchyma that intimately interact with neurons and astrocytes to remodel synapses and extracellular matrix. We briefly review studies elucidating the molecular pathways that underlie microglial surveillance, activation, chemotaxis, and phagocytosis; we additionally place these studies in a clinical context. We describe and validate an inexpensive and simple approach to obtain enriched single cell suspensions of quiescent parenchymal and perivascular microglia from the mouse cerebellum and hypothalamus. Following preparation of regional CNS single cell suspensions, we remove myelin debris, and then perform two serial enrichment steps for cells expressing surface CD11b. Myelin depletion and CD11b enrichment are both accomplished using antigen-specific magnetic beads in an automated cell separation system. Flow cytometry of the resultant suspensions shows a significant enrichment for CD11b(+)/CD45(+) cells (perivascular microglia) and CD11b(+)/CD45(-) cells (parenchymal microglia) compared to starting suspensions. Of note, cells from these enriched suspensions minimally express Aif1 (aka Iba1), suggesting that the enrichment process does not evoke significant microglial activation. However, these cells readily respond to a functional challenge (LPS) with significant changes in the expression of molecules specifically associated with microglia. We conclude that methods employing a combination of magnetic-bead based sorting and flow cytometry produce suspensions highly enriched for microglia that are appropriate for a variety of molecular and cellular assays.
Project description:Microglia are essential for maintenance of normal brain function, with dysregulation contributing to numerous neurological diseases. Protocols have been developed to derive microglia-like cells from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). However, primary microglia display major differences in morphology and gene expression when grown in culture, including down-regulation of signature microglial genes. Thus, in vitro differentiated microglia may not accurately represent resting primary microglia. To address this issue, we transplanted microglial precursors derived in vitro from hiPSCs into neonatal mouse brains and found that the cells acquired characteristic microglial morphology and gene expression signatures that closely resembled primary human microglia. Single-cell RNA-sequencing analysis of transplanted microglia showed similar cellular heterogeneity as primary human cells. Thus, hiPSCs-derived microglia transplanted into the neonatal mouse brain assume a phenotype and gene expression signature resembling that of resting microglia residing in the human brain, making chimeras a superior tool to study microglia in human disease.
Project description:Cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA), the deposition of beta-amyloid (Abeta) peptides in leptomeningeal and cortical blood vessels, affects the majority of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Evidence suggests that vascular amyloid deposits may result from impaired clearance of neuronal Abeta along perivascular spaces. We investigated the role of perivascular macrophages in regulating CAA severity in the TgCRND8 mouse model of AD. Depletion of perivascular macrophages significantly increased the number of thioflavin S-positive cortical blood vessels. ELISA confirmed that this increase was underscored by elevations in total vascular Abeta(42) levels. Conversely, stimulation of perivascular macrophage turnover reduced cerebral CAA load, an effect that was not mediated through clearance by microglia or astrocytes. These results highlight a function for the physiological role of perivascular macrophages in the regulation of CAA and suggest that selective targeting of perivascular macrophage activation might constitute a therapeutic strategy to clear vascular amyloid.
Project description:Scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI) is a high-density lipoprotein receptor that regulates cholesterol efflux from the peripheral tissues to the liver. SR-BI has been identified on astrocytes and vascular smooth muscle cells in Alzheimer's disease brain and has been shown to mediate adhesion of microglia to fibrillar amyloid-? (A?). Here we report that SR-BI mediates perivascular macrophage response and regulates A?-related pathology and cerebral amyloid angiopathy in an Alzheimer's mouse model. Reduction or deletion of SR-BI gene in heterozygous or homozygous deficient mice (SR-BI(+/-), (-/-)) resulted in a significant increase in perivascular macrophages in the brain. SR-BI deletion had no effect on apolipoprotein E or apolipoprotein AI levels in the mouse brain. Our analysis revealed increased levels of SR-BI expression in the brains of human amyloid precursor protein (Swedish, Indiana) transgenic mice (J20 line). To evaluate the role of SR-BI in Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis, we inactivated one SR-BI allele in J20 transgenic mice. SR-BI reduction in J20/SR-BI(+/-) mice enhanced fibrillar amyloid deposition and cerebral amyloid angiopathy and also exacerbated learning and memory deficits compared with J20 littermates. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed localization of SR-BI on perivascular macrophages in tight association with A? deposits. Our data suggest that SR-BI reduction impairs the response of perivascular macrophages to A? and enhances the A?-related phenotype and cerebral amyloid angiopathy in J20 mice. These results reveal that SR-BI, a scavenger receptor primarily involved in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol transport, plays an essential role in Alzheimer's disease and cerebral amyloid angiopathy.