Volume 6.46 | Nov 21

Neural Cell News 6.46 November 21, 2012
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Microcephaly Gene Links Trithorax and REST/NRSF to Control Neural Stem Cell Proliferation and Differentiation
Investigators identified and characterized a nuclear zinc finger protein, ZNF335/NIF-1, as a causative gene for severe microcephaly, small somatic size, and neonatal death. RNA-interference and postmortem human studies show that ZNF335 is essential for neural progenitor self-renewal, neurogenesis, and neuronal differentiation. [Cell] Abstract | Graphical Abstract

Your Free Copy of the Nature Neuroscience Wallchart "Neural Stem Cells" Awaits.
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)

Microparticles Bearing Encephalitogenic Peptides Induce T-Cell Tolerance and Ameliorate Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis
Researchers showed that antigen-decorated microparticles induce long-term T-cell tolerance in mice with relapsing experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Specifically, intravenous infusion of either polystyrene or biodegradable poly(lactide-co-glycolide) microparticles bearing encephalitogenic peptides prevents the onset and modifies the course of the disease. [Nat Biotechnol] Abstract | Press Release | Podcasts

BCL6 Controls Neurogenesis through Sirt1-Dependent Epigenetic Repression of Selective Notch Targets
The authors identified Bcl6, an oncogene, as encoding a proneurogenic factor that is required for proper neurogenesis of the mouse cerebral cortex. BCL6 promoted the neurogenic conversion by switching the composition of Notch-dependent transcriptional complexes at the Hes5 promoter. [Nat Neurosci] Abstract

Regenerative Neurogenesis from Neural Progenitor Cells Requires Injury-Induced Expression of Gata3
Investigators hypothesized that injury-induced regenerative programs might be turned on after injury in zebrafish brain and enable regenerative neurogenesis. They identified the transcription factor gata3, which is expressed only after injury in different zebrafish organs. Gata3 is required for reactive proliferation of radial glia cells, subsequent regenerative neurogenesis, and migration of the newborn neurons. [Dev Cell]
Abstract | Graphical Abstract

Ephrin-A3 Suppresses Wnt Signaling to Control Retinal Stem Cell Potency
Researchers showed that the neurogenic potential of ciliary epithelium (CE)-derived cells is negatively regulated by ephrin-A3, which is upregulated in the CE of postnatal mice and presents a strong prohibitory niche for adult retinal stem cells. [Stem Cells] Abstract

High-Frequency Hippocampal Oscillations Activated by Optogenetic Stimulation of Transplanted Human ESC-Derived Neurons
Using multielectrode array recordings, researchers report activation of high-frequency oscillations in the β and γ ranges in the host hippocampal network via targeted optogenetic stimulation of transplanted human embryonic stem cells (ESC)-derived neurons. [J Neurosci] Abstract | Press Release

Cutting Edge: IL-13Rα1 Expression in Dopaminergic Neurons Contributes to Their Oxidative Stress-Mediated Loss following Chronic Peripheral Treatment with Lipopolysaccharide
In the mouse brain, scientists found that IL-13Rα1 was expressed in the dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta, which are preferentially lost in human Parkinson’s disease. [J Immunol] Abstract | Press Release

A Sox2 BAC Transgenic Approach for Targeting Adult Neural Stem Cells
To target Sox2-expressing neural stem/progenitor cells in a temporal manner, the authors generated a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenic mouse line, in which an inducible form of Cre, CreER™, is expressed under Sox2 regulatory elements. During development, the Sox2-CreER transgenic mice showed inducible Cre activity specifically in CNS stem/progenitor cells, making them a useful tool to regulate the expression of floxed genes temporally in embryonic neural stem/progenitor cells. [PLoS One] Full Article

PPARgamma Regulates the Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Human Neural Stem Cells with Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha
Scientists hypothesized that the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma) agonist could mediate tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF α) related to the regulation of human neural stem cells, by which TNF α possibly fulfills important roles in neuronal impairment. [Neuroscience] Abstract

Webinar: Brent Reynolds on Identification and Caracterization of Neural Stem Cells


Data Demonstrate that Perifosine Combined with Temsirolimus Was Well Tolerated in Phase I Trial in Malignant Glioma
Aeterna Zentaris Inc. announced that perifosine, its oral AKT inhibitor, combined with temsirolimus, was well tolerated in an investigator driven phase I clinical trial in recurrent or progressive malignant glioma. [Press release from Aeterna Zentaris Inc. discussing research presented at the Society of Neuro-Oncology (SNO) Annual Meeting, Washington] Press Release | Poster

Roche Study Showed that Avastin Helped People with Newly Diagnosed Glioblastoma Live Longer without Their Disease Worsening When Added to Radiation and Chemotherapy

Roche announced results from the positive phase III AVAglio study. The study showed Avastin in combination with radiation and temozolomide chemotherapy reduced the risk of cancer worsening or death by 36 percent compared to radiation and temozolomide chemotherapy plus placebo in people with newly diagnosed glioblastoma, the most common and aggressive form of primary brain cancer. [Press release from Roche discussing research presented at the Society of Neuro-Oncology (SNO) Annual Meeting, Washington] Press Release


TauRx Pharmaceuticals Receives $111.8M Commitment from Genting to Prepare for Market Leadership in Alzheimer’s
TauRx Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (TauRx) announced the receipt of a further equity investment of US$31.5m from Genting Management Pte. Ltd. (GMS). The amount represents the first tranche of a total investment of US$111.8m by GMS in TauRx in exchange for a 20 percent equity stake in the pioneering pharmaceutical company. [TauRx Therapeutics Ltd] Press Release

Ethical Approval for LCT’s NTCELL® Phase I Trial
Living Cell Technologies (LCT) Limited has received ethical approval from the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Health and Disability Ethics Committee to proceed with phase I clinical trials of NTCELL® for Parkinson’s disease. [Living Cell Technologies Limited] Press Release


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)


NEW The Jackson Laboratory: New and Emerging Mouse Models of Parkinson’s Disease
December 6, 1:00PM (ET in US)

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Postdoctoral Position – Axonal Transport of Mitochondria in ALS (University of Sheffield)

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