Volume 9.47 | Dec 16

Neural Cell News 9.47 December 16, 2015
Neural Cell News
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First Serotonin Neurons Made from Human Stem Cells
Su-Chun Zhang, a pioneer in developing neurons from stem cells, has created a specialized nerve cell that makes serotonin, a signaling chemical with a broad role in the brain. [Press release from University of Wisconsin–Madison discussing online prepublication in Nature Biotechnology] Press Release | Abstract
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PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by impact factor of the journal)
Extreme Vulnerability of IDH1 Mutant Cancers to NAD+ Depletion
Scientists found that 2-hydroxyglutarate depletion did not inhibit growth of several IDH1 mutant solid cancer types. To identify other metabolic therapeutic targets, they systematically profiled metabolites in endogenous IDH1 mutant cancer cells after mutant IDH1 inhibition and discovered a profound vulnerability to depletion of the coenzyme NAD+. [Cancer Cell] Abstract | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

Purification and Characterization of Progenitor and Mature Human Astrocytes Reveals Transcriptional and Functional Differences with Mouse
Researchers report the development of an immunopanning method to acutely purify astrocytes from fetal, juvenile, and adult human brains and to maintain these cells in serum-free cultures. [Neuron]
Full Article | Press Release

Wallerian Degeneration Is Executed by an NMN-SARM1-Dependent Late Ca2+ Influx but Only Modestly Influenced by Mitochondria
Researchers showed, in vitro and in vivo, that axotomy leads to a late increase in intra-axonal Ca2+, abolished by pharmacological or genetic reduction of NMN levels. [Cell Rep]
Full Article | Graphical Abstract | Press Release

Regulation of Shootin1 Gene Expression Involves NGF-induced Alternative Splicing during Neuronal Differentiation of PC12 Cells
The authors demonstrated that the isoform-1 and isoform-2 of shootin1 is differentially expressed during neuronal differentiation. By blocking individual downstream pathways of NGF signaling, they found that PI3K/Akt pathway plays a major role in the expression of shootin1 isoform-2. [Sci Rep] Full Article

Efficient Generation of Region-Specific Forebrain Neurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells under Highly Defined Condition
Investigators provided an optimized paradigm to generate region-specific forebrain neurons from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) under a defined system. They assessed five conditions and found that a vitronectin-coated substrate was the most efficient method to differentiate hPSCs to neurons and astrocytes. [Sci Rep] Full Article

Genomic Analysis Reveals Disruption of Striatal Neuronal Development and Therapeutic Targets in Human Huntington’s Disease Neural Stem Cells
Scientists utilized induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from Huntington’s disease (HD) patients as a human model of HD and determined that the disease phenotypes only manifest in the differentiated neural stem cell stage, not in iPSCs. [Stem Cell Rep] Full Article | Graphical Abstract

Activation of AKT1/GSK-3β/β-Catenin–TRIM11/Survivin Pathway by Novel GSK-3β Inhibitor Promotes Neuron Cell Survival: Study in Differentiated SH-SY5Y Cells in OGD Model
The authors aimed to elucidate the effect of a new glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) inhibitor in RA differentiated SH-SY5Y cells in oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD) model. [Mol Neurobiol] Abstract

Deficiency of Neuronal p38α-MAPK Attenuates Amyloid Pathology in Alzheimer’s Mouse and Cell Models through Facilitating Lysosomal Degradation of BACE1
Using immunological and biochemical methods, the authors observed that reduction of p38α-MAPK expression facilitated the lysosomal degradation of BACE1, decreased BACE1 protein and activity, and subsequently attenuated amyloid β generation in the Alzheimer’s disease mouse brain. Inhibition of p38α-MAPK also enhanced autophagy. [J Biol Chem] Abstract | Full Article

miR-22 Inhibits the Proliferation, Motility, and Invasion of Human Glioblastoma Cells by Directly Targeting SIRT1
Researchers carried out gene transfection, western blot, and reverse transcription PCR to explore the role of microRNA (miR)-22 in glioblastoma tissues and cell lines. They verified that the expression of miR-22 was downregulated in glioblastoma tissues and cells rather than matched non-tumor tissues and normal human astrocyte cells. [Tumor Biol] Abstract

Free Wallchart from Nature Reviews Neuroscience on Modeling Neurological Disease with iPS Cells
Effects of Neuroinflammation on Neural Stem Cells
The authors summarized the effects of inflammation on neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs) in relation to their origin and briefly described the NSC activity during different neurological diseases or experimental models. [Neuroscientist] Abstract

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells in Huntington’s Disease: Disease Modeling and the Potential for Cell-Based Therapy
The authors highlight the promises and challenges for pluripotent stem cells that might be used as a therapeutic source for cell replacement therapy of the lost neurons in Huntington’s disease brains. [Mol Neurobiol] Abstract

Visit our reviews page to see a complete list of reviews in the neural cell research field.
Brain Cancer Self-Organizes into Streams, Swirls, and Spheres
Researchers report that glioma cells build tumors by self-organizing into streams, 10-20 cells wide, that obey a mathematically predicted pattern for autonomous agents flowing together. These streams drag along slower gliomas, may block entry of immune cells, and swirl around a central axis containing glioma stem cells that feed the tumor’s growth. [Press release from the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) discussing research presented at the 2015 ASCB Annual Meeting, San Diego] Press Release

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ImmunoCellular Therapeutics Establishes Agreement with The Canadian Brain Tumor Consortium for ICT-107 Phase III Registrational Trial in Glioblastoma
ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd. announced the establishment of an agreement with The Canadian Brain Tumour Consortium for the Phase III registrational trial of its cancer immunotherapy ICT-107 in patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma. [ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd.] Press Release

Motor Improvement Seen in Patients with Cervical Spinal Cord Injury After Stem Cell Implantation
After six months, the patients in the StemCells, Inc. trial being conducted at University of Miami Hospital are demonstrating improvements in both strength and function. They are the first cohort in the Phase II pathway study which is measuring the effects of implanting stem cells in patients with cervical spinal cord injury. [University of Miami] Press Release

GliaCure Completes Successful Proof of Concept Phase Ib Clinical Trial in Alzheimer’s Disease
GliaCure announced that it has successfully completed a Phase Ib clinical trial of its lead product candidate, GC021109, a compound developed as a disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. [GliaCure Inc.] Press Release

Researcher Launches Nation’s First Clinical Trial Using Stem Cells to Treat Alzheimer’s Disease
A new clinical trial at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine will be the first in the U.S. to focus on using mesenchymal stem cells to treat Alzheimer’s disease. [University of Miami] Press Release

Grant to CHOP Funds Personalized Treatments for Children with Neuroblastoma
A new $1.5 million grant to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) from Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation supports an innovative approach to treating relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma, a high-risk childhood cancer. [The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia] 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 Keystone Symposia – Stem Cells and Cancer
March 6-10, 2016
Breckenridge, United States

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the neural cell community.
NEW Faculty Positions – Neuroscience (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology)

Neurogenetics Research and Clinical Genetic Counselor (Howard Hughes Medical Institute)

Senior Research Fellow – Brain Cancer (The University of Queensland)

Research Assistant, Associate or Full Professor – Vision Health (University of Montreal)

Investigator – Cancer Biology (Wake Forest Baptist School of Medicine)

Postdoctoral Position – Scaffold Design & Drug/Gene Delivery for Neural Tissue Engineering (Nanyang Technological University)

Postdoctoral Position – Stem Cell Engineering Research (Nanyang Technological University)

Director – Brown Institute for Brain Science (Brown University)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Pediatric Brain Cancer (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center)

Postdoctoral Position – Neuroscience/Stem Cell Research (University of California, Davis)

Assistant/Associate/Full Professor – Biomedical Engineering (Worcester Polytechnic Institute)

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