brain diseases
Recently Published Documents





2022 ◽  
Zengpeng Han ◽  
Nengsong Luo ◽  
Jiaxin Kou ◽  
Lei Li ◽  
Wenyu Ma ◽  

Viral tracers that permit efficient retrograde targeting of projection neurons are powerful vehicles for structural and functional dissections of the neural circuit and for the treatment of brain diseases. Recombinant adeno-associated viruses (rAAVs) are the most potential candidates because they are low-toxic with high-level transgene expression and minimal host immune responses. Currently, some rAAVs based on capsid engineering for retrograde tracing have been widely used in the analysis and manipulation of neural circuits, but suffer from brain area selectivity and inefficient retrograde transduction in certain neural connections. Here, we discovered that the recombinant adeno-associated virus 11 (rAAV11) exhibits potent retrograde labeling of projection neurons with enhanced efficiency to rAAV2-retro in some neural connections. Combined with calcium recording technology, rAAV11 can be used to monitor neuronal activities by expressing Cre recombinase or calcium-sensitive functional probe. In addition, we further showed the suitability of rAAV11 for astrocyte targeting. These properties make rAAV11 a promising tool for the mapping and manipulation of neural circuits and gene therapy of some neurological and neurodegenerative disorders.

Lin Lin ◽  
Mu-Xin Zhang ◽  
Lei Zhang ◽  
Dan Zhang ◽  
Chao Li ◽  

Atherosclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disorder characterized by the gradual buildup of plaques within the vessel wall of middle-sized and large arteries. The occurrence and development of atherosclerosis and the rupture of plaques are related to the injury of vascular cells, including endothelial cells, smooth muscle cells, and macrophages. Autophagy is a subcellular process that plays an important role in the degradation of proteins and damaged organelles, and the autophagy disorder of vascular cells is closely related to atherosclerosis. Pyroptosis is a proinflammatory form of regulated cell death, while ferroptosis is a form of regulated nonapoptotic cell death involving overwhelming iron-dependent lipid peroxidation. Both of them exhibit distinct features from apoptosis, necrosis, and autophagy in morphology, biochemistry, and genetics. However, a growing body of evidence suggests that pyroptosis and ferroptosis interact with autophagy and participate in the development of cancers, degenerative brain diseases and cardiovascular diseases. This review updated the current understanding of autophagy, pyroptosis, and ferroptosis, finding potential links and their effects on atherogenesis and plaque stability, thus providing ways to develop new pharmacological strategies to address atherosclerosis and stabilize vulnerable, ruptured plaques.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 (1) ◽  
Dominique Endres ◽  
Thomas A. Pollak ◽  
Karl Bechter ◽  
Dominik Denzel ◽  
Karoline Pitsch ◽  

AbstractObsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a highly disabling mental illness that can be divided into frequent primary and rarer organic secondary forms. Its association with secondary autoimmune triggers was introduced through the discovery of Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcal infection (PANDAS) and Pediatric Acute onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANS). Autoimmune encephalitis and systemic autoimmune diseases or other autoimmune brain diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, have also been reported to sometimes present with obsessive-compulsive symptoms (OCS). Subgroups of patients with OCD show elevated proinflammatory cytokines and autoantibodies against targets that include the basal ganglia. In this conceptual review paper, the clinical manifestations, pathophysiological considerations, diagnostic investigations, and treatment approaches of immune-related secondary OCD are summarized. The novel concept of “autoimmune OCD” is proposed for a small subgroup of OCD patients, and clinical signs based on the PANDAS/PANS criteria and from recent experience with autoimmune encephalitis and autoimmune psychosis are suggested. Red flag signs for “autoimmune OCD” could include (sub)acute onset, unusual age of onset, atypical presentation of OCS with neuropsychiatric features (e.g., disproportionate cognitive deficits) or accompanying neurological symptoms (e.g., movement disorders), autonomic dysfunction, treatment resistance, associations of symptom onset with infections such as group A streptococcus, comorbid autoimmune diseases or malignancies. Clinical investigations may also reveal alterations such as increased levels of anti-basal ganglia or dopamine receptor antibodies or inflammatory changes in the basal ganglia in neuroimaging. Based on these red flag signs, the criteria for a possible, probable, and definite autoimmune OCD subtype are proposed.

2022 ◽  
Vol 23 (2) ◽  
pp. 693
Mirela Sarbu ◽  
Raluca Ica ◽  
Alina D. Zamfir

Gangliosides are effective biochemical markers of brain pathologies, being also in the focus of research as potential therapeutic targets. Accurate brain ganglioside mapping is an essential requirement for correlating the specificity of their composition with a certain pathological state and establishing a well-defined set of biomarkers. Among all bioanalytical methods conceived for this purpose, mass spectrometry (MS) has developed into one of the most valuable, due to the wealth and consistency of structural information provided. In this context, the present article reviews the achievements of MS in discovery and structural analysis of gangliosides associated with severe brain pathologies. The first part is dedicated to the contributions of MS in the assessment of ganglioside composition and role in the specific neurodegenerative disorders: Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. A large subsequent section is devoted to cephalic disorders (CD), with an emphasis on the MS of gangliosides in anencephaly, the most common and severe disease in the CD spectrum. The last part is focused on the major accomplishments of MS-based methods in the discovery of ganglioside species, which are associated with primary and secondary brain tumors and may either facilitate an early diagnosis or represent target molecules for immunotherapy oriented against brain cancers.

2022 ◽  
Nathalie Lecat-Guillet ◽  
Robert B Quast ◽  
Hongkang Liu ◽  
Thor C Moller ◽  
Xavier Rovira ◽  

Selective allosteric modulators bear great potential to fine-tune neurotransmitter-induced brain receptor responses. Promising targets are metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptors, which are associated to different brain diseases. These multidomain class C GPCRs experience concerted structural rearrangements and rely on allosteric modulation of agonist action to be fully activated. Here we establish live cell compatible fluorescence labeling of mGlu2 by click chemistry through genetic code expansion. Using lanthanide resonance energy transfer, we establish multiple FRET sensors to monitor ligand effects on conformational changes in mGlu2 extracellular domain and subsequently dissect the underlying conformational states by smFRET. Using three distinct FRET sensors, we demonstrate that mGlu activation relies on a ligand-induced sampling of three conformational states. Orthosteric agonists act by promoting the closure of the mGlu2 ligand binding domains, leading to an equilibrium between an inactive intermediate and the active state. Allosteric modulator further push this equilibrium toward the active state, promoting and stabilizing the relative reorientation of the mGlu protomers. These results underline the complex and dynamic nature of such type of neuroreceptors, pointing out that ligands fine-tune activation by differentially acting on the equilibria between multiple states.

2022 ◽  
pp. 1-21
Mamta Rai ◽  
Fabio Demontis

Skeletal muscle health and function are important determinants of systemic metabolic homeostasis and organism-wide responses, including disease outcome. While it is well known that exercise protects the central nervous system (CNS) from aging and disease, only recently this has been found to depend on the endocrine capacity of skeletal muscle. Here, we review muscle-secreted growth factors and cytokines (myokines), metabolites (myometabolites), and other unconventional signals (e.g. bioactive lipid species, enzymes, and exosomes) that mediate muscle-brain and muscle-retina communication and neuroprotection in response to exercise and associated processes, such as the muscle unfolded protein response and metabolic stress. In addition to impacting proteostasis, neurogenesis, and cognitive functions, muscle-brain signaling influences complex brain-dependent behaviors, such as depression, sleeping patterns, and biosynthesis of neurotransmitters. Moreover, myokine signaling adapts feeding behavior to meet the energy demands of skeletal muscle. Contrary to protective myokines induced by exercise and associated signaling pathways, inactivity and muscle wasting may derange myokine expression and secretion and in turn compromise CNS function. We propose that tailoring muscle-to-CNS signaling by modulating myokines and myometabolites may combat age-related neurodegeneration and brain diseases that are influenced by systemic signals.

Mustafa N Shakir ◽  
Brittany N Dugger

Abstract Alzheimer disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized pathologically by the presence of neurofibrillary tangles and amyloid beta (Aβ) plaques in the brain. The disease was first described in 1906 by Alois Alzheimer, and since then, there have been many advancements in technologies that have aided in unlocking the secrets of this devastating disease. Such advancements include improving microscopy and staining techniques, refining diagnostic criteria for the disease, and increased appreciation for disease heterogeneity both in neuroanatomic location of abnormalities as well as overlap with other brain diseases; for example, Lewy body disease and vascular dementia. Despite numerous advancements, there is still much to achieve as there is not a cure for AD and postmortem histological analyses is still the gold standard for appreciating AD neuropathologic changes. Recent technological advances such as in-vivo biomarkers and machine learning algorithms permit great strides in disease understanding, and pave the way for potential new therapies and precision medicine approaches. Here, we review the history of human AD neuropathology research to include the notable advancements in understanding common co-pathologies in the setting of AD, and microscopy and staining methods. We also discuss future approaches with a specific focus on deep phenotyping using machine learning.

2022 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Dan Xia ◽  
Xinyang Zhang ◽  
Di Deng ◽  
Xiaoyan Ma ◽  
Samer Masri ◽  

Effectively enhancing the activity of inhibitory neurons has great therapeutic potentials since their reduced function/activity has significant contributions to pathology in various brain diseases. We showed previously that NMDAR positive allosteric modulator GNE-8324 and M-8324 selectively increase NMDAR activity on the inhibitory neurons and elevates their activity in vitro and in vivo. Here we examined the impact of long-term administering M-8324 on the functions and transcriptional profiling of parvalbumin-containing neurons in two representative brain regions, primary auditory cortex (Au1) and prelimbic prefrontal cortex (PrL-PFC). We found small changes in key electrophysiological parameters and RNA levels of neurotransmitter receptors, Na+ and Ca2+ channels. In contrast, large differences in cell adhesion molecules and K+ channels were found between Au1 and PrL-PFC in drug-naïve mice, and differences in cell adhesion molecules became much smaller after M-8324 treatment. There was also minor impact of M-8324 on cell cycle and apoptosis, suggesting a fine safety profile.

2022 ◽  
Vol 15 ◽  
Annemie Van der Linden ◽  
Mathias Hoehn

Functional and structural neuronal networks, as recorded by resting-state functional MRI and diffusion MRI-based tractography, gain increasing attention as data driven whole brain imaging methods not limited to the foci of the primary pathology or the known key affected regions but permitting to characterize the entire network response of the brain after disease or injury. Their connectome contents thus provide information on distal brain areas, directly or indirectly affected by and interacting with the primary pathological event or affected regions. From such information, a better understanding of the dynamics of disease progression is expected. Furthermore, observation of the brain's spontaneous or treatment-induced improvement will contribute to unravel the underlying mechanisms of plasticity and recovery across the whole-brain networks. In the present review, we discuss the values of functional and structural network information derived from systematic and controlled experimentation using clinically relevant animal models. We focus on rodent models of the cerebral diseases with high impact on social burdens, namely, neurodegeneration, and stroke.

2022 ◽  
Vol 23 (1) ◽  
pp. 497
Alexandra V. Dyomina ◽  
Anna A. Kovalenko ◽  
Maria V. Zakharova ◽  
Tatiana Yu. Postnikova ◽  
Alexandra V. Griflyuk ◽  

Metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) are expressed predominantly on neurons and glial cells and are involved in the modulation of a wide range of signal transduction cascades. Therefore, different subtypes of mGluRs are considered a promising target for the treatment of various brain diseases. Previous studies have demonstrated the seizure-induced upregulation of mGluR5; however, its functional significance is still unclear. In the present study, we aimed to clarify the effect of treatment with the selective mGluR5 antagonist 3-[(2-methyl-1,3-thiazol-4-yl)ethynyl]-pyridine (MTEP) on epileptogenesis and behavioral impairments in rats using the lithium–pilocarpine model. We found that the administration of MTEP during the latent phase of the model did not improve survival, prevent the development of epilepsy, or attenuate its manifestations in rats. However, MTEP treatment completely prevented neuronal loss and partially attenuated astrogliosis in the hippocampus. An increase in excitatory amino acid transporter 2 expression, which has been detected in treated rats, may prevent excitotoxicity and be a potential mechanism of neuroprotection. We also found that MTEP administration did not prevent the behavioral comorbidities such as depressive-like behavior, motor hyperactivity, reduction of exploratory behavior, and cognitive impairments typical in the lithium–pilocarpine model. Thus, despite the distinct neuroprotective effect, the MTEP treatment was ineffective in preventing epilepsy.

Sign in / Sign up

Export Citation Format

Share Document