Volume 6.12 | Mar 28

Neural Cell News 6.12, March 28, 2012
     In this issue: Publications | Industry News | Policy News | Events | Jobs
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A New Short Cut for Stem Cell Programming
Scientists have succeeded in directly generating brain stem cells from the connective tissue cells of mice. [Press release from the University of Bonn discussing online prepublication in Cell Stem Cell]
Press Release | Abstract

Open Access JoVE Protocol: Discriminating NSCs from NPCs with the NeuroCult™ NCFC Assay
PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)

Direct Reprogramming of Fibroblasts into Neural Stem Cells by Defined Factors
Investigators show that a combination of transcription factors induces mouse fibroblasts to directly acquire a neural stem cell identity which they term as induced neural stem cells. [Cell Stem Cell]
Abstract | Press Release

Astrocyte Signaling Controls Spike Timing-Dependent Depression at Neocortical Synapses
Researchers found that astrocytes are critically involved in spike timing-dependent depression. [Nat Neurosci] Abstract

Mitochondrial Ca2+ Mobilization Is a Key Element in Olfactory Signaling
Scientists demonstrate a critical physiological role of mitochondrial Ca2+ mobilization in mouse olfactory sensory neurons. [Nat Neurosci] Abstract

Control of Timing, Rate and Bursts of Hippocampal Place Cells by Dendritic and Somatic Inhibition
Researchers’ findings indicate that perisomatic and dendritic inhibition have distinct roles in controlling the rate, burst and timing of hippocampal pyramidal cells. [Nat Neurosci] Abstract

Munc18-1 Mutations that Strongly Impair SNARE-Complex Binding Support Normal Synaptic Transmission
Researchers show that point mutations in Munc18-1 that interfere with binding to the free Syntaxin1a N-terminus and strongly impair binding to assembled SNARE complexes all support normal docking, priming and fusion of synaptic vesicles, and normal synaptic plasticity in munc18-1 null mutant neurons. [EMBO J] Abstract

Mutant Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines Recapitulate Aspects of TDP-43 Proteinopathies and Reveal Cell-Specific Vulnerability
Researchers report the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells that carry the transactive response DNA-binding (TDP-43) M337V mutation and their differentiation into neurons and functional motor neurons. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA] Abstract | Press Release

Dynamin 2 Mutations in Charcot-Marie-Tooth Neuropathy Highlight the Importance of Clathrin-Mediated Endocytosis in Myelination
Researchers used tissue derived from dynamin 2 (Dnm2)-deficient mice to establish an appropriate peripheral nerve model and found that dominant intermediate Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy type B-associated dynamin 2 mutants, but not autosomal dominant centronuclear myopathy mutants, impaired myelination. [Brain] Abstract

Transforming Growth Factor-β1 Regulates Cyclin Dependent Kinase 5 Activity in Primary Sensory Neurons
Since transforming growth factor-β regulates inflammatory processes and its receptor is expressed in TRPV1-positive afferents, researchers studied the crosstalk between these two pathways in sensory neurons during experimental peripheral inflammation. [J Biol Chem] Abstract

Inhibition of Planar Cell Polarity Extends Neural Growth during Regeneration, Homeostasis, and Development
Researchers found that loss of the planar cell polarity genes Vangl2, DAAM1, and ROCK by RNA interference resulted in supernumerary eyes and excess optical neurons in intact planarians, while regenerating planarians had continued hyperplasia throughout the nervous system long after controls ceased new growth. [Stem Cells Dev] Abstract

MicroRNA-34a Upregulation during Seizure-Induced Neuronal Death
Because seizures activate p53, and p53-deficient mice are reportedly resistant to damage caused by prolonged seizures, researchers investigated the role of microRNA-34a in seizure-induced neuronal death in vivo. [Cell Death Dis] Abstract

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A.J. Drexel Autism Institute Receives $1.5 Million from the Charles and Barbara Close Foundation
Drexel University has received a gift of $1.5 million from the Charles and Barbara Close Foundation to help establish the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute. The Institute is the nation’s first autism center focused on public health science. [Drexel University] Press Release

Harper Government Invests in Autism Treatment and Care
The Honorable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, announced funding for the Chair in Autism Spectrum Disorders Treatment and Care Research Program. The purpose of the Chair is to support a new investigator bringing innovative approaches to the treatment and/or care of autism spectrum disorders. [Canadian Institutes of Health Research] Press Release

Paul G. Allen Commits $300 Million to Expand the Allen Institute for Brain Science to Drive Toward a Complete Understanding of How the Brain Works
The Allen Institute for Brain Science announced that Paul G. Allen has committed an additional $300 million to the Institute to significantly expand its scientific programs. [Allen Institute for Brain Science] 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 European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) Conference: Stem Cells in Cancer and Regenerative Medicine
August 29-September 1, 2012
Heidelberg, Germany

Visit our events page to see a complete list of events in the neural cell community.


Scientist – Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Epithelial Cell Research (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Hematology (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – hPSC (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Business Analyst – Product Management (STEMSOFT Software, Inc.)

Scientist – hPSC Bioengineering (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Scientist – Antibody and Hybridoma Technology Platforms (STEMCELL Technologies, Inc.)

Postdoctoral Fellow – Visual Neuroscience (RIKEN Brain Science Institute)

Postdoctoral Position in Stem Cells – Department of Neuroscience (Karolinska Institutet)

Postdoctoral Position in Stem Cell Biology/Neuroscience/Cancer (The Jackson Laboratory)

Postdoctoral Fellow in Epigenetic Regulation of Neural Stem Cells (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

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