Volume 8.08 | Mar 5

Neural Cell News 8.08 March 5, 2014
Neural Cell News
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TOP STORY
Experimental Stroke Therapeutic Also Shows Promise for People with Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS)
Researchers found that an experimental drug now being studied in human stroke patients appears to protect the blood-spinal cord barrier’s integrity in mice and delay motor neuron impairment and degeneration. [Press release from the Keck School of Medicine of USC discussing online prepublication in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA] Press Release | Abstract | Full Article
Brain Food: NeuroCult SM1 for Long-Term Primary Neuronal Culture. View Data!
 
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Serpins Promote Cancer Cell Survival and Vascular Co-Option in Brain Metastasis
Researchers identified plasmin from the reactive brain stroma as a defense against metastatic invasion, and plasminogen activator inhibitory serpins in cancer cells as a shield against this defense. Plasmin suppresses brain metastasis in two ways: by converting membrane-bound astrocytic FasL into a paracrine death signal for cancer cells, and by inactivating the axon pathfinding molecule L1CAM, which metastatic cells express for spreading along brain capillaries and for metastatic outgrowth. [Cell]
Abstract | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

Neuronal Activity Regulates Extracellular Tau In Vivo
The cellular mechanisms regulating tau release into the extracellular space are not well understood. To test this in the context of neuronal networks in vivo, researchers used in vivo microdialysis. Increasing neuronal activity rapidly increased the steady-state levels of extracellular tau in vivo. [J Exp Med] Abstract | Press Release

Amyloid Precursor Protein Regulates Neurogenesis by Antagonizing miR-574-5p in the Developing Cerebral Cortex
Scientists showed that amyloid precursor protein regulates the expression of microRNAs (miRs) in the cortex and in neural progenitors, specifically repressing miR-574-5p. They also showed that overexpression of miR-574-5p promotes neurogenesis, but reduces the neural progenitor pool. [Nat Commun] Abstract

MYC Proteins Promote Neuronal Differentiation by Controlling the Mode of Progenitor Cell Division
Results show that depletion of endogenous MYC in radial glial precursors is incompatible with differentiation and conversely, that overexpression of MYC induces neurogenesis independently of premature or upregulated expression of proneural gene programs. [EMBO Rep] Full Article | Press Release

Sprouting of Brainstem-Spinal Tracts in Response to Unilateral Motor Cortex Stroke in Mice
Adult mice were subjected to a unilateral photothrombotic stroke of the right motor cortex ablating 90% of the cross-projecting corticospinal cells. Whereas some nuclei showed no change or a decrease of their spinal projections, several parts of the medullary reticular formation as well as the spinally projecting raphe nuclei increased their projections to the cortically denervated cervical hemicord by 1.2- to 1.6-fold. [J Neurosci] Abstract | Press Release

A High-Content Morphological Screen Identifies Novel MicroRNAs that Regulate Neuroblastoma Cell Differentiation
Investigators developed a direct functional high-content screen to identify differentiation-inducing microRNAs, in order to develop microRNA-based differentiation therapy for neuroblastoma. They discovered novel microRNAs, and more strikingly, three microRNA seed families that induce neuroblastoma cell differentiation. [Oncotarget] Abstract | Press Release

Generation and Characterization of Friedreich Ataxia YG8R Mouse Fibroblast and Neural Stem Cell Models
Researchers describe the first fibroblast and neural stem cell (NSC) models from YG8R Friedreich ataxia mice and confirmed that the NSCs can be differentiated into neurons and glia. [PLoS One] Full Article

Sox11 Promotes Endogenous Neurogenesis and Locomotor Recovery in Mice Spinal Cord Injury
Investigators introduced a lentiviral vector containing the Sox11 gene into injured spinal cords of mice to evaluate the therapeutic potential of Sox11 in spinal cord injury. They concluded that Sox11 induced activation of endogenous neural stem cells into neuronal determination and migration within the injured spinal cord. [Biochem Biophys Res Commun] Abstract

Effects of the Polymeric Niche on Neural Stem Cell Characteristics during Primary Culturing
The effect of physical and chemical properties of treated (corona, oxygen/nitrogen plasma) and untreated cyclic olefin polymer (COP), polymethymethacrylate (PMMA), PP, PLA, polystyrene, PC on neuronal stem cell characteristics was analyzed. This comprehensive approach revealed plasma treated COP and PMMA as optimal polymers for primary neuronal stem cell culturing and propagation. [J Mater Sci Mater Med] Abstract

Sensory-Driven Enhancement of Calcium Signals in Individual Purkinje Cell Dendrites of Awake Mice
Climbing fibers (CFs) are thought to contribute to cerebellar plasticity and learning by triggering a large influx of dendritic calcium in the postsynaptic Purkinje cell (PC) to signal the occurrence of an unexpected sensory event. Researchers report that in PC dendrites of awake mice, CF-triggered calcium signals are enhanced when the trigger is a sensory event. [Cell Rep] Full Article | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

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REVIEWS
Communicating by Touch – Neurons Are Not Alone
Researchers review contact-mediated signaling in neurons and discuss how this signaling mechanism is shared by other cell types. [Trends Cell Biol] Abstract

Prenatal Treatment of Down Syndrome: A Reality?
This review summarizes the different functional abnormalities targeted by researchers in mouse models of Down syndrome. Three main strategies have been used: neural stem cell implantation; environmental enrichment and physical exercise; and pharmacotherapy. [Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the neuroscience field.
 
INDUSTRY NEWS
UT Southwestern Launches Texas Institute for Brain Injury, Repair
UT Southwestern Medical Center launched the new Texas Institute for Brain Injury and Repair, a state-funded initiative to promote innovative research and education, with the goals of accelerating translation into better diagnosis and revolutionizing care for millions of people who suffer brain injuries each year. [The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center] Press Release

BrainStorm Receives Additional $600,000 Non-Dilutive Grant from Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist
BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc. announced that Brainstorm Cell Therapeutics Ltd. was awarded an additional non-dilutive grant from Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist for the year 2014 in the amount of $600,000. The grant is intended to support BrainStorm’s clinical development for its innovative stem cell therapy candidate NurOwn™. [BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics Inc.] Press Release

ImmunoCellular Therapeutics Receives Orphan Drug Status for ICT-107 in Glioblastoma in the European Union
ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd. announced that the European Medicines Agency has granted orphan drug designation for ICT-107 for the treatment of patients with glioblastoma. [ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd.] Press Release

McGovern Institute to Honor Neurogenetics Researcher Huda Zoghbi
The McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT announced that Huda Y. Zoghbi, of Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital, is the winner of the 2014 Edward M. Scolnick Prize in Neuroscience. [Massachusetts Institute of Technology] Press Release

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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 10th Swiss Stem Cells Network (SSCN) Annual Meeting
June 4, 2014
Geneva, Switzerland

NEW Development, Functions and Disorders of the Nervous System
July 19-24, 2014
Montreal, Canada

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the neural cell community.
 
JOB OPPORTUNITIES
NEW Research Associate – Neuroscience (King’s College London)

NEW Director of GMP/GLP Quality Operations (University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine)

NEW Scientific Communications & Publishing Coordinator (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Cell Culture Specialist – Manufacturing of Cell Therapy Products (Tisch MS Research Center of New York)

Postdoctoral Position – Neurobiology & Alzheimer’s Disease (Tel Aviv University)

Assistant/Associate Professors – Allergic Inflammation and Sensory Neurobiology (North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine)

Boris Family Fellowships – Neural Stem Cell Research (McMaster University)

Postdoctoral Position – Modeling Neurodevelopmental Disorders with Human Pluripotent Stem Cells (Università di Trento)

Postdoctoral Researcher – Pathogenesis of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (VIB Vesalius Research Center Belgium)

Postdoctoral Position – Developmental Neurobiology (Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center)

Postdoctoral Position – RNA Metabolism in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle épinière)

Research Technologist – Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Technologist – Particle Chemistry (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Research Technologist – PSC Biology and Bioengineering (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)


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