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Pluripotent stem cell-derived interneuron progenitors mature and restore memory deficits but do not suppress seizures in the epileptic mouse brainGABAergic interneuron dysfunction has been implicated in temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), autism, and schizophrenia. Inhibitory interneuron progenitors transplanted into the hippocampus of rodents with TLE provide varying degrees of seizure suppression. We investigated whether human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived interneuron progenitors (hESNPs) could differentiate, correct hippocampal-dependent spatial memory deficits, and suppress seizures in a pilocarpine-induced TLE mouse model. We found that transplanted ventralized hESNPs differentiated into mature GABAergic interneurons and became electrophysiologically active with mature firing patterns. Some mice developed hESNP-derived tumor-like NSC clusters. Mice with transplants showed significant improvement in the Morris water maze test, but transplants did not suppress seizures. The limited effects of the human GABAergic interneuron progenitor grafts may be due to cell type heterogeneity within the transplants.
Restrained dendritic growth of adult-born granule cells innervated by transplanted fetal GABAergic interneurons in mice with temporal lobe epilepsy.The dentate gyrus (DG) is a region of the adult rodent brain that undergoes continuous neurogenesis. Seizures and loss or dysfunction of GABAergic synapses onto adult-born dentate granule cells (GCs) alter their dendritic growth and migration, resulting in dysmorphic and hyperexcitable GCs. Additionally, transplants of fetal GABAergic interneurons in the DG of mice with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) result in seizure suppression, but it is unknown whether increasing interneurons with these transplants restores GABAergic innervation to adult-born GCs. Here we address this question by retroviral birth-dating GCs at different times up to 12 weeks after pilocarpine-induced TLE in adult mice. ChR2-EYFP-expressing MGE-derived GABAergic interneurons from E13.5 mouse embryos were transplanted into the DG of the TLE mice and GCs with transplant-derived inhibitory post-synaptic currents were identified by patch-clamp electrophysiology and optogenetic interrogation. Putative synaptic sites between GCs and GABAergic transplants were also confirmed by intracellular biocytin staining, immunohistochemistry, and confocal imaging. 3D reconstructions of dendritic arbors and quantitative morphometric analyses were carried out in >150 adult-born GCs. GABAergic inputs from transplanted interneurons correlated with markedly shorter GC dendrites, compared to GCs that were not innervated by the transplants. Moreover, these effects were confined to distal dendritic branches and a shortmore »
Direct reprogramming of oligodendrocyte precursor cells into GABAergic inhibitory neurons by a single homeodomain transcription factor Dlx2
Oligodendrocyte precursor cells (NG2 glia) are uniformly distributed proliferative cells in the mammalian central nervous system and generate myelinating oligodendrocytes throughout life. A subpopulation of OPCs in the neocortex arises from progenitor cells in the embryonic ganglionic eminences that also produce inhibitory neurons. The neuronal fate of some progenitor cells is sealed before birth as they become committed to the oligodendrocyte lineage, marked by sustained expression of the oligodendrocyte transcription factor Olig2, which represses the interneuron transcription factor Dlx2. Here we show that misexpression of Dlx2 alone in postnatal mouse OPCs caused them to switch their fate to GABAergic neurons within 2 days by downregulating Olig2 and upregulating a network of inhibitory neuron transcripts. After two weeks, some OPC-derived neurons generated trains of action potentials and formed clusters of GABAergic synaptic proteins. Our study revealed that the developmental molecular logic can be applied to promote neuronal reprogramming from OPCs.
Optogenetic Interrogation of ChR2-Expressing GABAergic Interneurons After Transplantation into the Mouse BrainDempski, Robert (Ed.)This paper describes research methods to investigate the development of synaptic connections between transplanted GABAergic interneurons and endogenous neurons in the adult mouse hippocampus. Our protocol highlights methods for retroviral labeling adult-born GCs, one of the few cell types in the adult brain to be continuously renewed throughout life. By precise targeting of the retrovirus, labeling of adult-born GCs can be combined with optogenetic stimulation of the transplanted cells and electrophysiology in brain slices, to test whether the GABAergic interneurons integrate and establish inhibitory synaptic connections with host brain neurons. Modifications to adult neurogenesis are an important contributing factor in the development and severity of TLE and seizures. When combined with retroviral labeling, the approaches we describe in this chapter can be used to determine whether transplantation modifies the process of adult neurogenesis or other properties of the hippocampus. These approaches are helping to define parameters for potential cell replacement therapies to be used in patients with intractable seizure disorders.
Development of electrophysiological and morphological properties of human embryonic stem cell-derived GABAergic interneurons at different times after transplantation into the mouse hippocampusTransplantation of human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived neural progenitors is a potential treatment for neurological disorders, but relatively little is known about the time course for human neuron maturation after transplantation and the emergence of morphological and electrophysiological properties. To address this gap, we transplanted hESC-derived human GABAergic interneuron progenitors into the mouse hippocampus, and then characterized their electrophysiological properties and dendritic arborizations after transplantation by means of ex vivo whole-cell patch clamp recording, followed by biocytin staining, confocal imaging and neuron reconstruction software. We asked whether particular electrophysiological and morphological properties showed maturation-dependent changes after transplantation. We also investigated whether the emergence of particular electrophysiological properties were linked to increased complexity of the dendritic arbors. Human neurons were classified into five distinct neuronal types (Type I-V), ranging from immature to mature fastspiking interneurons. Hierarchical clustering of the dendritic morphology and Sholl analyses suggested four morphologically distinct classes (Class A-D), ranging from simple/immature to highly complex. Incorporating all of our data regardless of neuronal classification, we investigated whether any electrophysiological and morphological features correlated with time post-transplantation. This analysis demonstrated that both dendritic arbors and electrophysiological properties matured after transplantation.