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2022 ◽  
Vol 23 (2) ◽  
pp. 959
Matthias Apweiler ◽  
Jana Streyczek ◽  
Soraya Wilke Saliba ◽  
Juan Antonio Collado ◽  
Thomas Hurrle ◽  

Anti-neuroinflammatory treatment has gained importance in the search for pharmacological treatments of different neurological and psychiatric diseases, such as depression, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. Clinical studies demonstrate a reduction of the mentioned diseases’ symptoms after the administration of anti-inflammatory drugs. Novel coumarin derivates have been shown to elicit anti-neuroinflammatory effects via G-protein coupled receptor GPR55, with possibly reduced side-effects compared to the known anti-inflammatory drugs. In this study, we, therefore, evaluated the anti-inflammatory capacities of the two novel coumarin-based compounds, KIT C and KIT H, in human neuroblastoma cells and primary murine microglia. Both compounds reduced PGE2-concentrations likely via the inhibition of COX-2 synthesis in SK-N-SH cells but only KIT C decreased PGE2-levels in primary microglia. The examination of other pro- and anti-inflammatory parameters showed varying effects of both compounds. Therefore, the differences in the effects of KIT C and KIT H might be explained by functional selectivity as well as tissue- or cell-dependent expression and signal pathways coupled to GPR55. Understanding the role of chemical residues in functional selectivity and specific cell- and tissue-targeting might open new therapeutic options in pharmacological drug development and might improve the treatment of the mentioned diseases by intervening in an early step of their pathogenesis.

Molecules ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 27 (2) ◽  
pp. 536
Anais M. Quemener ◽  
Maria Laura Centomo ◽  
Scott L. Sax ◽  
Riccardo Panella

Antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) are an increasingly represented class of drugs. These small sequences of nucleotides are designed to precisely target other oligonucleotides, usually RNA species, and are modified to protect them from degradation by nucleases. Their specificity is due to their sequence, so it is possible to target any RNA sequence that is already known. These molecules are very versatile and adaptable given that their sequence and chemistry can be custom manufactured. Based on the chemistry being used, their activity may significantly change and their effects on cell function and phenotypes can differ dramatically. While some will cause the target RNA to decay, others will only bind to the target and act as a steric blocker. Their incredible versatility is the key to manipulating several aspects of nucleic acid function as well as their process, and alter the transcriptome profile of a specific cell type or tissue. For example, they can be used to modify splicing or mask specific sites on a target. The entire design rather than just the sequence is essential to ensuring the specificity of the ASO to its target. Thus, it is vitally important to ensure that the complete process of drug design and testing is taken into account. ASOs’ adaptability is a considerable advantage, and over the past decades has allowed multiple new drugs to be approved. This, in turn, has had a significant and positive impact on patient lives. Given current challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is necessary to find new therapeutic strategies that would complement the vaccination efforts being used across the globe. ASOs may be a very powerful tool that can be used to target the virus RNA and provide a therapeutic paradigm. The proof of the efficacy of ASOs as an anti-viral agent is long-standing, yet no molecule currently has FDA approval. The emergence and widespread use of RNA vaccines during this health crisis might provide an ideal opportunity to develop the first anti-viral ASOs on the market. In this review, we describe the story of ASOs, the different characteristics of their chemistry, and how their characteristics translate into research and as a clinical tool.

2022 ◽  
Vol 22 ◽  
Anita A Pinar ◽  
Chrishan S S Samuel

Abstract: Inflammation and fibrosis are two inter‐related disease pathologies with several overlapping components. Three specific cell types, macrophages, T helper cells and myofibroblasts, each play important roles in regulating both processes. Following tissue injury, an inflammatory stimulus is often necessary to initiate tissue repair, where cytokines released from infiltrating and resident immune and inflammatory cells stimulate the proliferation and activation of extracellular matrix-producing myofibroblasts. However, persistent tissue injury drives an inappropriate pro‐fibrotic response. Additionally, activated myofibroblasts can take on the role of traditional antigen-presenting cells, secrete pro‐inflammatory cytokines, and recruit inflammatory cells to fibrotic foci, amplifying the fibrotic response in a vicious cycle. Moreover, inflammatory cells have been shown to play contradictory roles in the initiation, amplification and resolution of fibrotic disease processes. The central role of the inflammasome molecular platform in contributing to fibrosis is only beginning to be fully appreciated. In this review, we discuss the immune mechanisms that can lead to fibrosis, the inflammasomes that have been implicated in the fibrotic process in the context of the immune response to injury, and also discuss current and emerging therapies that target inflammasome-induced collagen deposition to treat organ fibrosis.

2022 ◽  
Ana Rocio Conde-Moro ◽  
Florbela Rocha-Almeida ◽  
Elias Gebara ◽  
Jose Maria Delgado-Garcia ◽  
Carmen Sandi ◽  

Social behaviors such as cooperation are crucial for mammals. A deeper knowledge of the neuronal mechanisms underlying cooperation can be beneficial for people suffering from pathologies with impaired social behavior. Our aim was to study the brain activity when two animals synchronize their behavior to obtain a mutual reinforcement. In a previous work, we showed that the activity of the prelimbic cortex (PrL) was enhanced during cooperation in rats, especially in the ones leading most cooperative trials (leader rats). In this study, we investigated the specific cell type/s in the PrL contributing to cooperative behaviors. To this end, we collected rats' brains at key moments of the learning process to analyze the levels of c-FOS expression in the main cellular groups of the PrL (glutamatergic cells containing D1 and D2 receptors and interneurons). Leader rats showed increased c-FOS activity in cells expressing D1 receptors during cooperation. In addition, we analyzed the levels of anxiety, dominance, and locomotor behavior, finding that leader rats are in general less anxious and less dominant than followers. We also recorded local field potentials (LFPs) from the PrL, the nucleus accumbens septi (NAc), and the basolateral amygdala (BLA). Spectral analysis showed that delta activity in PrL and NAc increased when rats cooperated, while BLA activity in delta and theta bands decreased considerably during cooperation. The PrL and NAc also increased their connectivity in the high theta band during cooperation. Thus, the present work identifies the specific PrL cell types engaged in this behavior, as well as its connectivity with subcortical brain regions (BLA, NAc) during cooperation.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 (1) ◽  
Lena-Louise Schuele ◽  
Britta Schuermann ◽  
Andras Bilkei-Gorzo ◽  
Sara Gorgzadeh ◽  
Andreas Zimmer ◽  

AbstractThe endocannabinoid system modulates adult hippocampal neurogenesis by promoting the proliferation and survival of neural stem and progenitor cells (NSPCs). This is demonstrated by the disruption of adult neurogenesis under two experimental conditions: (1) NSPC-specific deletion of cannabinoid receptors and (2) constitutive deletion of the enzyme diacylglycerol lipase alpha (DAGLa) which produces the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). However, the specific cell types producing 2-AG relevant to neurogenesis remain unknown. Here we sought to identify the cellular source of endocannabinoids in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus (DG) in hippocampus, an important neurogenic niche. For this purpose, we used two complementary Cre-deleter mouse strains to delete Dagla either in neurons, or in astroglia and NSPCs. Surprisingly, neurogenesis was not altered in mice bearing a deletion of Dagla in neurons (Syn-Dagla KO), although neurons are the main source for the endocannabinoids in the brain. In contrast, a specific inducible deletion of Dagla in NPSCs and astrocytes (GLAST-CreERT2-Dagla KO) resulted in a strongly impaired neurogenesis with a 50% decrease in proliferation of newborn cells. These results identify Dagla in NSPCs in the DG or in astrocytes as a prominent regulator of adult hippocampal neurogenesis. We also show a reduction of Daglb expression in GLAST-CreERT2-Dagla KO mice, which may have contributed to the neurogenesis phenotype.

Biomedicines ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 10 (1) ◽  
pp. 151
Gloria Krapež ◽  
Katarina Kouter ◽  
Ivana Jovčevska ◽  
Alja Videtič Paska

Glioblastoma is simultaneously the most common and most aggressive primary brain tumor in the central nervous system, with poor patient survival and scarce treatment options. Most primary glioblastomas reoccur and evolve radio- and chemoresistant properties which make them resistant to further treatments. Based on gene mutations and expression profiles, glioblastoma is relatively well classified; however, research shows that there is more to glioblastoma biology than that defined solely by its genetic component. Specifically, the overall malignancy of the tumor is also influenced by the dynamic communication to its immediate and distant environment, as important messengers to neighboring cells in the tumor microenvironment extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been identified. EVs and their cargo can modulate the immune microenvironment and other physiological processes, and can interact with the host immune system. They are involved in tumor cell survival and metabolism, tumor initiation, progression, and therapy resistance. However, on the other hand EVs are thought to become an effective treatment alternative, since they can cross the blood–brain barrier, are able of specific cell-targeting and can be loaded with various therapeutic molecules.

Thokchom Shitarjit Singh ◽  
O.R. Sathyamoorthy ◽  
Soundian Eswari ◽  
Sabiha Hayath Basha ◽  
M. Parthiban

Background: Mesenchymal stem cells are well known for their self-renewal capacity and ability to differentiate into multiple cell lineages. The aim of the study was to develop a simple technique for isolation of mesenchymal stem cells from porcine adipose tissue and to study the morphometric characteristics of porcine mesenchymal stem cells. Methods: Porcine adipose derived mesenchymal stem cells were isolated in vitro by using collagenase type II enzyme. Cell yield and viability of the cells were calculated by using trypan blue exclusion method using Neubauer’s chamber. Characterization of MSCs were done by using specific cell markers. The morphological changes, morphometry were analysed in culture using Leishman’s stain. The cell doubling (CD) and Population doubling time (PDT) were also calculated. Result: The isolated adherent cells start forming colony and demonstrated an elongated, round and spindle like fibroblastic morphology by day 1. Almost 80-90 per cent confluency was attained on day 8-9 after the initial seeding and was reduced to day 3-4 in the subsequent passages. RT-PCR reactions revealed positive expression of mesenchymal stem cell markers CD44, CD73 and negative expression of CD34, a hematopoietic cell surface marker. Immunocytochemistry also revealed positive expression for CD44 and negative for CD34. In morphometric studies, the cell length, nucleus length, cell width and nucleus width were increased between 24 and 48 hours in both P2 and P3.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Inge Holm ◽  
Luisa Nardini ◽  
Adrien Pain ◽  
Emmanuel Bischoff ◽  
Cameron E. Anderson ◽  

Almost all regulation of gene expression in eukaryotic genomes is mediated by the action of distant non-coding transcriptional enhancers upon proximal gene promoters. Enhancer locations cannot be accurately predicted bioinformatically because of the absence of a defined sequence code, and thus functional assays are required for their direct detection. Here we used a massively parallel reporter assay, Self-Transcribing Active Regulatory Region sequencing (STARR-seq), to generate the first comprehensive genome-wide map of enhancers in Anopheles coluzzii, a major African malaria vector in the Gambiae species complex. The screen was carried out by transfecting reporter libraries created from the genomic DNA of 60 wild A. coluzzii from Burkina Faso into A. coluzzii 4a3A cells, in order to functionally query enhancer activity of the natural population within the homologous cellular context. We report a catalog of 3,288 active genomic enhancers that were significant across three biological replicates, 74% of them located in intergenic and intronic regions. The STARR-seq enhancer screen is chromatin-free and thus detects inherent activity of a comprehensive catalog of enhancers that may be restricted in vivo to specific cell types or developmental stages. Testing of a validation panel of enhancer candidates using manual luciferase assays confirmed enhancer function in 26 of 28 (93%) of the candidates over a wide dynamic range of activity from two to at least 16-fold activity above baseline. The enhancers occupy only 0.7% of the genome, and display distinct composition features. The enhancer compartment is significantly enriched for 15 transcription factor binding site signatures, and displays divergence for specific dinucleotide repeats, as compared to matched non-enhancer genomic controls. The genome-wide catalog of A. coluzzii enhancers is publicly available in a simple searchable graphic format. This enhancer catalogue will be valuable in linking genetic and phenotypic variation, in identifying regulatory elements that could be employed in vector manipulation, and in better targeting of chromosome editing to minimize extraneous regulation influences on the introduced sequences.Importance: Understanding the role of the non-coding regulatory genome in complex disease phenotypes is essential, but even in well-characterized model organisms, identification of regulatory regions within the vast non-coding genome remains a challenge. We used a large-scale assay to generate a genome wide map of transcriptional enhancers. Such a catalogue for the important malaria vector, Anopheles coluzzii, will be an important research tool as the role of non-coding regulatory variation in differential susceptibility to malaria infection is explored and as a public resource for research on this important insect vector of disease.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Junqiu Jia ◽  
Lixuan Yang ◽  
Yan Chen ◽  
Lili Zheng ◽  
Yanting Chen ◽  

Microglia are the resident immune cells of the central nervous system that exert diverse roles in the pathogenesis of ischemic stroke. During the past decades, microglial polarization and chemotactic properties have been well-studied, whereas less attention has been paid to phagocytic phenotypes of microglia in stroke. Generally, whether phagocytosis mediated by microglia plays a beneficial or detrimental role in stroke remains controversial, which calls for further investigations. Most researchers are in favor of the former proposal currently since efficient clearance of tissue debris promotes tissue reconstruction and neuronal network reorganization in part. Other scholars propose that excessively activated microglia engulf live or stressed neuronal cells, which results in neurological deficits and brain atrophy. Upon ischemia challenge, the microglia infiltrate injured brain tissue and engulf live/dead neurons, myelin debris, apoptotic cell debris, endothelial cells, and leukocytes. Cell phagocytosis is provoked by the exposure of “eat-me” signals or the loss of “don’t eat-me” signals. We supposed that microglial phagocytosis could be initiated by the specific “eat-me” signal and its corresponding receptor on the specific cell type under pathological circumstances. In this review, we will summarize phagocytic characterizations of microglia after stroke and the potential receptors responsible for this programmed biological progress. Understanding these questions precisely may help to develop appropriate phagocytic regulatory molecules, which are promoting self-limiting inflammation without damaging functional cells.

Genes ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
pp. 122
Joan Fitzgerald ◽  
Laura Fahey ◽  
Laurena Holleran ◽  
Pilib Ó Broin ◽  
Gary Donohoe ◽  

Cognitive resilience is the ability to withstand the negative effects of stress on cognitive functioning and is important for maintaining quality of life while aging. The UK Biobank does not have measurements of the same cognitive phenotype at distal time points. Therefore, we used education years (EY) as a proxy phenotype for past cognitive performance and current cognitive performance was based on processing speed. This represented an average time span of 40 years between past and current cognitive performance in 330,097 individuals. A confounding factor was that EY is highly polygenic and masked the genetics of resilience. To overcome this, we employed Genomics Structural Equation Modelling (GenomicSEM) to perform a genome-wide association study (GWAS)-by-subtraction using two GWAS, one GWAS of EY and resilience and a second GWAS of EY but not resilience, to generate a GWAS of Resilience. Using independent discovery and replication samples, we found 13 independent genetic loci for Resilience. Functional analyses showed enrichment in several brain regions and specific cell types. Gene-set analyses implicated the biological process “neuron differentiation”, the cellular component “synaptic part” and the “WNT signalosome”. Mendelian randomisation analysis showed a causative effect of white matter volume on cognitive resilience. These results may contribute to the neurobiological understanding of resilience.

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