Volume 9.20 | May 27

Neural Cell News 9.20 May 27, 2015
Neural Cell News
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Tiny Spheres of Human Cells Mimic the Brain
Researchers have figured out how to create spheres of neuronal cells resembling the cerebral cortex, making functional human brain tissue available for the first time to study neuropsychiatric diseases such as autism and schizophrenia. [Press release from Stanford Medicine discussing online prepublication in Nature Methods] Press Release | Abstract
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Single-Cell Transcriptome Analyses Reveal Signals to Activate Dormant Neural Stem Cells
Administration of vascular endothelial growth factor activated CD133+ ependymal neural stem cells, lining not only the lateral but also the fourth ventricles and, together with basic fibroblast growth factor, elicited subsequent neural lineage differentiation and migration. [Cell] Abstract | Graphical Abstract

Single Transcription Factor Conversion of Human Blood Fate to NPCs with CNS and PNS Developmental Capacity
Scientists generated induced neural progenitor cells (NPCs) from neonatal and adult peripheral blood using single-factor OCT4 reprogramming. Unlike fibroblasts that share molecular hallmarks of neural crest, OCT4 reprogramming of blood was facilitated by SMAD+GSK-3 inhibition to overcome restrictions on neural fate conversion. [Cell Rep] Full Article | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

Morphine Promotes Astrocyte-Preferential Differentiation of Mouse Hippocampal Progenitor Cells via PKCε-Dependent ERK Activation and TRBP Phosphorylation
By using neural progenitor cell (NPCs) cultured from PKCε or β-arrestin2 knockout mice and the MEK inhibitor U0126, scientists demonstrated that regulation of NPC differentiation via the miR-181a/Prox1/Notch1 pathway exhibits ligand-dependent selectivity. [Stem Cells] Abstract

A Herbal Medicine for Alzheimer’s Disease and Its Active Constituents Promote Neural Progenitor Proliferation
Researchers found that the extract of Rhizoma Acori tatarinowii (AT) and its active constituents, asarones, promote neural progenitor cell (NPC) proliferation. Oral administration of AT enhanced NPC proliferation and neurogenesis in the hippocampi of adult and aged mice as well as that of transgenic Alzheimer’s disease model mice. [Aging Cell] Full Article

DPP-4 Inhibitor Linagliptin Attenuates Aβ-Induced Cytotoxicity through Activation of AMPK in Neuronal Cells
Scientists evaluated the mechanisms by which linagliptin protects against Aβ-induced impaired insulin signaling and cytotoxicity in cultured SK-N-MC human neuronal cells. [CNS Neurosci Ther] Full Article

The ROR2 Tyrosine Kinase Receptor Regulates Dendritic Spine Morphogenesis in Hippocampal Neurons
The authors report that ROR2 is distributed in the dendrites of hippocampal neurons in close proximity to synaptic contacts and it is contained in dendritic spine protrusions. They demonstrated that ROR2 is necessary to maintain dendritic spine number and morphological distribution in cultured hippocampal neurons. [Mol Cell Neurosci] Abstract

Microglia Activation and Interaction with Neuronal Cells in a Biochemical Model of Mevalonate Kinase Deficiency
Investigators evaluated the effect of the mevalonate blocking on glial cells and the following effects on neuronal cells when the two populations were cultured together. [Apoptosis] Abstract

Foxp1 Regulates Cortical Radial Migration and Neuronal Morphogenesis in Developing Cerebral Cortex
The authors report that suppression of Foxp1 expression in mouse cerebral cortex led to a neuronal migration defect, which was rescued by overexpression of Foxp1. [PLoS One] Full Article

Ammonia-Induced Oxidative Damage in Neurons Is Prevented by Resveratrol and Lipoic Acid with Participation of Heme Oxygenase 1
Investigators demonstrated that ammonia can induce direct effects on neuronal cells. The cell viability was decreased by ammonia in SH-SY5Y cells and cerebellar granule neurons. [Neurotoxicology] Abstract

Expression of REST4 in Human Gliomas In Vivo and Influence of Pioglitazone on REST In Vitro
Scientists showed that pioglitazone can inhibit proliferation and induce apoptosis of glioma cell in vitro, which may be mediated by down-regulating repressor element-1 silencing transcription factor (REST) mRNA level but not by inducing alternative splicing of REST pre-mRNA. [Biochem Biophys Res Commun] Abstract

Monosynaptic Tracing using Modified Rabies Virus Reveals Early and Extensive Circuit Integration of Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Neurons
Researchers used modified rabies virus to trace afferent and efferent connectivity of transplanted human embryonic stem cell-derived neurons in a rat model of Parkinson’s disease and report that grafted human neurons integrate into the host neural circuitry in an unexpectedly rapid and extensive manner. [Stem Cells Rep] Full Article | Graphical Abstract

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NG2-Glia and Their Functions in the Central Nervous System
The authors discuss some of the most current and highly debated issues regarding NG2-glia. They highlight the importance of NG2-glia not only in the healthy, but also in the diseased brain. [Glia] Abstract

The Role of Gangliosides in Neurodevelopment
Gangliosides are important components of neuronal cell membranes and it is widely accepted that they play a critical role in neuronal and brain development. They are functionally involved in neurotransmission and are thought to support the formation and stabilization of functional synapses and neural circuits required as the structural basis of memory and learning. [Nutrients] Full Article

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the neural cell research field.
Ludwig Scientists to Report Advances in Treatment of Brain, Skin, Gastrointestinal Cancers
Ludwig researchers will present recent data from early and late stage clinical trials and participate in a number of plenary and educational sessions. [Press release from Ludwig Cancer Research discussing research to be presented at the 2015 American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, Chicago] Press Release

International Stem Cell Corporation to Present at International Society for Cellular Therapy Annual Meeting
International Stem Cell Corporation announced that the company has been selected to give an oral presentation on its preclinical studies in Parkinson’s disease. [Press release from International Stem Cell Corporation discussing research to be presented at the 21st annual meeting of the International Society for Cellular Therapy (ICST), Las Vegas] Press Release

Novogen to Present at Brain Tumor Biotech Summit 2015
Novogen Limited announced that it will present at the Brain Tumor Biotech Summit 2015. Novogen has been invited to present at this prestigious event because of its recent collaboration with the Feinstein with the objective of bringing the drug candidate, TRXE-009, into the clinic as a treatment for both adult and pediatric brain cancers. [Press release from Novogen Limited (PR Newswire Association LLC) discussing research to be presented at the Brain Tumor Biotech Summit 2015, New York City] Press Release

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Researcher Awarded $4.9 Million Grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Shaomei Wang, MD, PhD, a research scientist in the Eye Program at the Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute, received a $4.9 million grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to advance her work in retinitis pigmentosa, a type of degenerative retinal disease. [Cedars-Sinai] Press Release

Ocata Therapeutics Receives Three New U.S. Patents for Its RPE Therapy for Macular Degenerative Diseases
Ocata Therapeutics, Inc. announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office issued three new U.S. Patents, Nos. 9,040,770, 9,040,039 and 9,040,038, which expand the scope of protection of the four previously issued U.S. patents covering its retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) transplant technology. [Ocata Therapeutics, Inc.] Press Release

Pennington Family Foundation Awards $200,000 Grant to Lieber Institute for Brain Development for Autism Research
The Lieber Institute for Brain Development announced the award of a $200,000 grant from the Pennington Family Foundation that will support its efforts to improve the lives of individuals with schizophrenia and related neurodevelopmental disorders. [Lieber Institute for Brain Development] Press Release

CytRx Reports Positive Updated Phase II Aldoxorubicin Clinical Trial Results in Glioblastoma Multiforme (Brain Cancer)
CytRx Corporation announced positive updated results from its ongoing Phase II clinical trial with aldoxorubicin for the treatment of unresectable glioblastoma multiforme, a deadly form of brain cancer. [CytRx Corporation] Press Release

Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas Awards 41 New Grants
The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas awarded 28 grants through its academic research program, 11 grants through its prevention program and two grants through its product development research program. [Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas] Press Release
FTC, All 50 States and D.C. Charge Four Cancer Charities with Bilking Over $187 Million from Consumers
The Federal Trade Commission and 58 law enforcement partners from every state and the District of Columbia have charged four sham cancer charities and their operators with bilking more than $187 million from consumers. [Federal Trade Commission] Editorial

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NEW International Symposium on Clinical and Basic Investigation in Glioblastoma
September 9-12, 2015
Toledo, Spain

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the neural cell community.
NEW Postdoctoral Position – Neuroplacentology (Children’s National Medical Center)

Research Associate – Cell Separation (STEMCELL Technologies Inc.)

Postdoctoral Fellow Positions – iPSC Research and Banking (University of Magna Graecia)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Stem Cell Biology/Neuroscience (Tulane University)

Postdoctoral Fellowships – Neurodevelopment (Vollum Institute)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Neural Tissue Engineering (Nanyang Technological University)

Faculty Positions (IDG/McGovern Institute for Brain Research at Peking University)

PhD Studentship – Neurobiology (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia)

Postdoctoral Scientist – Neural Stem Cells (Texas Biomedical Research Institute)

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