Volume 7.37 | Sep 18

Neural Cell News 7.37 September 18, 2013
Neural Cell News
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Stunted Neuron Branching Restored in Mice
Researchers report that mutation of a gene associated with some autism forms in humans can hinder the proper growth and connectivity of brain cells in mice. They also showed how that understanding allowed them to restore proper cell growth in the lab. [Press release from Brown University discussing online prepublication in Neuron] Press Release | Abstract
Happy Neurons lead to Happy Neuroscientists: NeuroCult SM Primary Neuronal Culture Kits
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Val66Met Polymorphism of BDNF Alters Prodomain Structure to Induce Neuronal Growth Cone Retraction
Researchers showed that the isolated brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) prodomain is detected in the hippocampus and that it can be secreted from neurons in an activity-dependent manner. [Nat Commun] Abstract

Membrane Biophysics Define Neuron and Astrocyte Progenitors in the Neural Lineage
Researchers hypothesized that inherent electrophysiological properties are sufficient to define neurogenic progenitors (NPs) and astrogenic progenitors (APs) and test this by determining whether isolation of cells solely by these properties specifically separates NPs and APs. They found NPs and APs are enriched in distinct fractions after separation by electrophysiological properties using dielectrophoresis. [Stem Cells] Abstract

Interplay between Human Microglia and Neural Stem/Progenitor Cells in an Allogeneic Co-Culture Model
Scientists focused their studies on the interaction of human neural stem/progenitor cells (NPCs) and microglia utilizing a co-culture model. In co-cultures, both NPCs and microglia showed increased survival and proliferation compared with mono-cultures. [J Cell Mol Med] Abstract | Full Article

Cyclic AMP Promotes Axon Regeneration, Lesion Repair and Neuronal Survival in Lampreys after Spinal Cord Injury
Scientists took advantage of the large, identified reticulospinal neurons in lamprey, a vertebrate that exhibits robust axon regeneration after a complete spinal cord transection. Application of a cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) analog, db-cAMP, at the time of spinal cord transection increased the number of axons that regenerated across the lesion site. [Exp Neurol] Abstract

Short-Term Episodes of Hypoxia Induce Posthypoxic Hyperexcitability and Selective Death of GABAergic Hippocampal Neurons
Researchers compared the effect of short-term hypoxia on the amplitude of the Ca2+ response to NMDA and the Ca2+ transients generation in two populations of neurons – inhibitory GABAergic and excitatory glutamatergic. [Exp Neurol] Abstract

Molecular Features of Neural Stem Cells Enable their Enrichment Using Pharmacological Inhibitors of Survival-Promoting Kinases
Researchers demonstrated that postnatal rat neural precursors express low levels of pro-apoptotic molecules and resist PI3K and ERK1/2 inhibition as compared to late oligodendrocyte progenitors. [J Neurochem] Abstract

Differentiation of Reprogrammed Human Adipose Mesenchymal Stem Cells toward Neural Cells with Defined Transcription Factors
Researchers report a reprogramming methodology with which human adipose stem cells can be differentiated into neural cells. [Biochem Biophys Res Commun] Abstract

Migration of Glial Cells Differentiated from Neurosphere-Forming Neural Stem/Progenitor Cells Depends on the Stiffness of the Chemically Cross-Linked Collagen Gel Substrate
Substrate stiffness affects cell migration and spreading. Researchers revealed that the stiffness of the cell-adhesive substrate affected the migration pattern of neural cells. [Neurosci Lett] Abstract

Interactive Effects of Cell Therapy and Rehabilitation Realize the Full Potential of Neurogenesis in Brain Injury Model
Researchers report the neural stem/progenitor cells transplantation into a brain injury mouse model followed by treadmill exercise training. Transplanted cells at the brain injury site were observed and differentiated into neurons and astrocytes. [Neurosci Lett] Abstract

Imaging-Based Chemical Screening Reveals Activity-Dependent Neural Differentiation of Pluripotent Stem Cells
Investigators report a high throughput imaging-based screen, which uncovers that selamectin, an anti-helminthic therapeutic compound with reported activity on invertebrate glutamate-gated chloride channels, promotes neural differentiation of pluripotent stem cells. [eLife] Full Article

Culture Human Glioma-Derived Tumorspheres with NeuroCult™ - View Publications
Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Axon Formation, Growth, and Branching
Recent discoveries have provided insight into many aspects of the cell biology of axonal development including axon specification during neuronal polarization, axon growth, and terminal axon branching during synaptogenesis. [J Cell Biol] Abstract

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Sunovion Reports Eslicarbazepine Acetate Meets Primary Endpoint in Two Phase III Monotherapy Studies for Partial-Onset Seizures in Adults with Epilepsy
Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced that two completed Phase III trials of eslicarbazepine acetate (ESL) as a monotherapy treatment met their primary endpoint. ESL was well-tolerated and demonstrated seizure control rates superior to historical controls in adult patients with partial-onset seizures with or without secondary generalization who were not well-controlled by current antiepileptic drugs. [Sunovion Pharmaceuticals Inc.] Press Release

Agenus Reports Positive Follow-On Phase II Results for Brain Cancer Vaccine in Newly Diagnosed Patients
Agenus Inc. announced that a recent analysis from a Phase II trial in patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma multiforme treated with Prophage Series G-100 in combination with the current standard of care showed an almost 18 month median progression free survival, which represents a 160% increase versus current standard of care alone. [Agenus Inc.] Press Release

Cutting-Edge Brain Science by UCSF Researcher Wins First Barancik Prize for Innovation in MS Research
Neuroscientist Jonah Chan, PhD, at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), is the first recipient of a new international prize launched to recognize innovation and progress in multiple sclerosis (MS) research. [National Multiple Sclerosis Society] Press Release

Evotec and Harvard Stem Cell Institute form CureMN Collaboration to Advance ALS Research
Evotec AG announced a strategic partnership with the Harvard Stem Cell Institute to identify compounds that prevent or slow down the loss of motor neurons, which is characteristic of the human disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). [Evotec AG] Press Release

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NEW Development, Function and Disease of Neural Circuits
October 21-25, 2013
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NEW PhD Studentship – Neuroscience (Tübingen University)

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