Volume 5.16 | Apr 27

Neural Cell News 5.16, April 27, 2011
     In this issue: Science News | Current Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events
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TOP STORY

Scientists Create Stable, Self-Renewing Neural Stem Cells
Researchers report a game-changing advance in stem cell science: the creation of long-term, self-renewing, primitive neural precursor cells from human embryonic stem cells that can be directed to become many types of neuron without increased risk of tumor formation. [Press release from the University of California, San Diego discussing online prepublication in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA]

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SCIENCE NEWS

Molecular Movements of Neural Transporters Unveiled: New Discoveries May Lead to Insights Into Drug Abuse and Depression
A team of scientists has shed light on the molecular workings of transporter proteins, molecular machines embedded in the cell membranes of neurons that modulate the transfer of signals between cells and recycle neurotransmitters. [Press release from Weill Cornell Medical College discussing online prepublication in Nature]

Understanding How Brain Cells Migrate during Normal Development May Offer Insight on How Cancer Cells Spread
By shedding new light on how cells migrate in the developing brain, researchers also may have found a new mechanism by which other types of cells, including cancer cells, travel within the body. [Press release from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center discussing online prepublication in Nature Neuroscience]

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CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

Substrate-Modulated Gating Dynamics in a Na+-Coupled Neurotransmitter Transporter Homologue
Researchers investigated how substrate binding is coupled to structural transitions in LeuT during Na+-coupled transport. Here researchers
report a process whereby substrate binding from the extracellular side of LeuT facilitates intracellular gate opening and substrate release at the intracellular face of the protein. [Nature]

Ablation of Fmrp in Adult Neural Stem Cells Disrupts Hippocampus-Dependent Learning
Here researchers show that ablation of Fmrp in neural stem and progenitor cells by inducible gene recombination leads to reduced hippocampal
neurogenesis in vitro and in vivo, as well as markedly impairing hippocampus-dependent learning in mice. [Nat Med]

Reelin, Rap1 and N-cadherin Orient the Migration of Multipolar Neurons in the Developing Neocortex
Here researchers show that Reelin, the Rap1 GTPase and N-cadherin are important for multipolar neurons to polarize their migration toward the
cortical plate. [Nat Neurosci]

Mechanism of Ca2+/Calmodulin-Dependent Kinase II Regulation of AMPA Receptor Gating
Researchers show that Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent kinase II increases the conductance of native heteromeric AMPA receptors in mouse hippocampal
neurons through phosphorylation of Ser831. [Nat Neurosci]

Regeneration of Axons in Injured Spinal Cord by Activation of Bone Morphogenetic Protein/Smad1 Signaling Pathway in Adult Neurons
Here, researchers show that Smad1-dependent bone morphogenetic protein signaling is developmentally regulated and governs axonal growth in
dorsal root ganglion neurons. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA]

Schwann Cell Spectrins Modulate Peripheral Nerve Myelination
Here, researchers demonstrate that the submembranous cytoskeletal proteins aII and ßII spectrin are polarized in Schwann cells and colocalize
with signaling molecules known to modulate myelination in vitro. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA]

Direct Reprogramming of Mouse Fibroblasts to Neural Progenitors
Results provide a unique paradigm for induced pluripotent stem cell-factor–based reprogramming by demonstrating that it can be readily
modified to serve as a general platform for transdifferentiation. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA]

FoxM1 in Tumorigenicity of the Neuroblastoma cells and Renewal of the Neural Progenitors
In this study, researchers investigate the roles of FoxM1 in the tumorigenicity of neuroblastoma. They show that depletion of FoxM1 inhibits
anchorage-independent growth and tumorigenicity in mouse xenografts. [Cancer Res]

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells for Neural Tissue Engineering
Researchers derived neural crest stem cells (NCSCs) from human induced pluripotent stem cells and embryonic stem cells, and investigated the
potential of NCSCs for neural tissue engineering. [Biomaterials]

Array-Based Functional Screening of Growth Factors Toward Optimizing Neural Stem Cell Microenvironments
To gain insights into the effect of various growth factors on the behaviors of neural stem cells, cell culture assays were performed on the
array that displayed five different growth factors including basic fibroblast growth factor, epidermal growth factor, insulin-like growth factor-1, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, and ciliary neurotrophic factor. [Biomaterials]

INDUSTRY NEWS

Lilly and Medtronic Announce Drug-Device Collaboration for Parkinson’s Disease
Eli Lilly and Company and Medtronic, Inc. announced they have entered into a collaboration to research and develop a new approach to treating Parkinson’s disease that involves delivering a potential new medicine to the brain using an implantable drug delivery system. [Medtronic, Inc. Press Release]

Prana Accelerates PBT2 Commercial Development
Prana Biotechnology announced its business strategy to accelerate development of its lead asset, PBT2. [Prana Biotechnology Limited Press Release]

Bristol Neuroscience Facilitator Receives 2011 University Engagement Award
Dr Anne Cooke, facilitator for Bristol Neuroscience has won this year’s University of Bristol Engagement Award. [University of Bristol Press Release]

POLICY NEWS

National Institutes of Health (United States)

Food and Drug Administration (United States)

Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (United States)

European Medicines Agency (European Union)

Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (United Kingdom)

Therapeutic Goods Administration (Australia)

EVENTS
NEW Ribbon Synapses Symposium 2011
September 19-20, 2011
Göettingen, Germany

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the neural cell community.
JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Lab Technologist – Human Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies)

Research Position on Imaging Neurodegeneration (Singapore Bioimaging Consortium)

Tenure Track, Assistant/Associate Professor (University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine)

Translational Neuroscience Scholars: Neurodegenerative and Neuromuscular Diseases (University of Minnesota)

Neuroscience Center Director (The University of Texas Health Science Center)

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