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Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease resulting in motor impairment and death in patients. Recently, several studies have demonstrated insulin or insulin-like growth factor (IGF) treatment in models of HD, resulting in potent amelioration of HD phenotypes via modulation of the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathways. Administration of IGF and insulin can rescue microtubule transport, metabolic function, and autophagy defects, resulting in clearance of Huntingtin (HTT) aggregates, restoration of mitochondrial function, amelioration of motor abnormalities, and enhanced survival. Manganese (Mn) is an essential metal to all biological systems but, in excess, can be toxic. Interestingly, several studies have revealed the insulin-mimetic effects of Mn-demonstrating Mn can activate several of the same metabolic kinases and increase peripheral and neuronal insulin and IGF-1 levels in rodent models. Separate studies have shown mouse and human striatal neuroprogenitor cell (NPC) models exhibit a deficit in cellular Mn uptake, indicative of a Mn deficiency. Furthermore, evidence from the literature reveals a striking overlap between cellular consequences of Mn deficiency (i.e., impaired function of Mn-dependent enzymes) and known HD endophenotypes including excitotoxicity, increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation, and decreased mitochondrial function. Here we review published evidence supporting a hypothesis that (1) the potent effect of IGF or insulin treatment on HD models, (2) the insulin-mimetic effects of Mn, and (3) the newly discovered Mn-dependent perturbations in HD may all be functionally related. Together, this review will present the intriguing possibility that intricate regulatory cross-talk exists between Mn biology and/or toxicology and the insulin/IGF signaling pathways which may be deeply connected to HD pathology and, perhaps, other neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) and other neuropathological conditions.
Manganese (Mn) is an essential heavy metal that is naturally found in the environment. Daily intake through dietary sources provides the necessary amount required for several key physiological processes, including antioxidant defense, energy metabolism, immune function and others. However, overexposure from environmental sources can result in a condition known as manganism that features symptomatology similar to Parkinson's disease (PD). This disorder presents with debilitating motor and cognitive deficits that arise from a neurodegenerative process. In order to maintain a balance between its essentiality and neurotoxicity, several mechanisms exist to properly buffer cellular Mn levels. These include transporters involved in Mn uptake, and newly discovered Mn efflux mechanisms. This review will focus on current studies related to mechanisms underlying Mn import and export, primarily the Mn transporters, and their function and roles in Mn-induced neurotoxicity. Though and essential metal, overexposure to manganese may result in neurodegenerative disease analogous to Parkinson's disease. Manganese homeostasis is tightly regulated by transporters, including transmembrane importers (divalent metal transporter 1, transferrin and its receptor, zinc transporters ZIP8 and Zip14, dopamine transporter, calcium channels, choline transporters and citrate transporters) and exporters (ferroportin and SLC30A10), as well as the intracellular trafficking proteins (SPCA1 and ATP12A2). A manganese-specific sensor, GPP130, has been identified, which affords means for monitoring intracellular levels of this metal.
© 2015 International Society for Neurochemistry.
PURPOSE - Neurological diseases have a devastating impact on millions of individuals and their families. These diseases will continue to constitute a significant research focus for this century. The search for effective treatments and cures requires multiple teams of experts in clinical neurosciences, neuroradiology, engineering, and industry. Hence, the need to communicate a large amount of information with accuracy and precision is more necessary than ever for this specialty.
METHODS - In this paper, we present a distributed system that supports this vision, which we call the CranialVault Cloud (CranialCloud). It consists in a network of nodes, each with the capability to store and process data, that share the same spatial normalization processes, thus guaranteeing a common reference space. We detail and justify design choices, the architecture and functionality of individual nodes, the way these nodes interact, and how the distributed system can be used to support inter-institutional research.
RESULTS - We discuss the current state of the system that gathers data for more than 1,600 patients and how we envision it to grow.
CONCLUSION - We contend that the fastest way to find and develop promising treatments and cures is to permit teams of researchers to aggregate data, spatially normalize these data, and share them. The CranialVault system is a system that supports this vision.
Neurodegenerative diseases with distinct genetic etiologies and pathological phenotypes appear to share common mechanisms of neuronal cellular dysfunction, including excitotoxicity, calcium dysregulation, oxidative damage, ER stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. Glial cells, including microglia and astrocytes, play an increasingly recognized role in both the promotion and prevention of neurodegeneration. Sigma receptors, particularly the sigma-1 receptor subtype, which are expressed in both neurons and glia of multiple regions within the central nervous system, are a unique class of intracellular proteins that can modulate many biological mechanisms associated with neurodegeneration. These receptors therefore represent compelling putative targets for pharmacologically treating neurodegenerative disorders. In this review, we provide an overview of the biological mechanisms frequently associated with neurodegeneration, and discuss how sigma-1 receptors may alter these mechanisms to preserve or restore neuronal function. In addition, we speculate on their therapeutic potential in the treatment of various neurodegenerative disorders.
Copyright © 2015. Production and hosting by Elsevier B.V.
Sigma receptors comprise a unique family of proteins that have been implicated in the pathophysiology and treatment of many central nervous system disorders, consistent with their high level of expression in the brain and spinal cord. Mounting evidence indicate that targeting sigma receptors may be particularly beneficial in a number of neurodegenerative conditions including Alzheimer׳s disease, Parkinson׳s disease, stroke, methamphetamine neurotoxicity, Huntington׳s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and retinal degeneration. In this perspective, a brief overview is given on sigma receptors, followed by a focus on common mechanisms of neurodegeneration that appear amenable to modulation by sigma receptor ligands to convey neuroprotective effects and/or restorative functions. Within each of the major mechanisms discussed herein, the neuroprotective effects of sigma ligands are summarized, and when known, the specific sigma receptor subtype(s) involved are identified. Together, the literature suggests sigma receptors may provide a novel target for combatting neurodegenerative diseases through both neuronal and glial mechanisms.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Mutations in isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 and 2 (IDH1/2) have been discovered in several cancer types and cause the neurometabolic syndrome D2-hydroxyglutaric aciduria (D2HGA). The mutant enzymes exhibit neomorphic activity resulting in production of D2-hydroxyglutaric acid (D-2HG). To study the pathophysiological consequences of the accumulation of D-2HG, we generated transgenic mice with conditionally activated IDH2(R140Q) and IDH2(R172K) alleles. Global induction of mutant IDH2 expression in adults resulted in dilated cardiomyopathy, white matter abnormalities throughout the central nervous system (CNS), and muscular dystrophy. Embryonic activation of mutant IDH2 resulted in more pronounced phenotypes, including runting, hydrocephalus, and shortened life span, recapitulating the abnormalities observed in D2HGA patients. The diseased hearts exhibited mitochondrial damage and glycogen accumulation with a concordant up-regulation of genes involved in glycogen biosynthesis. Notably, mild cardiac hypertrophy was also observed in nude mice implanted with IDH2(R140Q)-expressing xenografts, suggesting that 2HG may potentially act in a paracrine fashion. Finally, we show that silencing of IDH2(R140Q) in mice with an inducible transgene restores heart function by lowering 2HG levels. Together, these findings indicate that inhibitors of mutant IDH2 may be beneficial in the treatment of D2HGA and suggest that 2HG produced by IDH mutant tumors has the potential to provoke a paraneoplastic condition.
The human brain is dependent upon successfully maintaining ionic, energetic and redox homeostasis within exceptionally narrow margins for proper function. The ability of neurons to adapt to genetic and environmental perturbations and evoke a 'new normal' can be most fully appreciated in the context of neurological disorders in which clinical impairments do not manifest until late in life, although dysfunctional proteins are expressed early in development. We now know that proteins controlling ATP generation, mitochondrial stability, and the redox environment are associated with neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Generally, focus is placed on the role that early or long-term environmental stress has in altering the survival of cells targeted by genetic dysfunctions; however, the central nervous system undergoes several periods of intense stress during normal maturation. One of the most profound periods of stress occurs when 50% of neurons are removed via programmed cell death. Unfortunately, we have virtually no understanding of how these events proceed in individuals who harbor mutations that are lethal later in life. Moreover, there is a profound lack of information on circuit formation, cell fate during development and neurochemical compensation in either humans or the animals used to model neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we consider the current knowledge of how energetic and oxidative stress signaling differs between neurons in early versus late stages of life, the influence of a new group of proteins that can integrate cell stress signals at the mitochondrial level, and the growing body of evidence that suggests early development should be considered a critical period for the genesis of chronic neurodegenerative diseases.
Copyright © 2012 S. Karger AG, Basel.
The phosphatase FIG4 regulates the concentration of phosphatidylinositol 3,5-diphosphate (PI3,5P2), a molecule critical for endosomal/lysosomal membrane trafficking and neuron function. We investigated Fig4 expression in the developing CNS of mice and rats using Western blot, real-time polymerase chain reaction, and morphological techniques in situ and in vitro and after spinal cord injury. Fig4 was expressed at a high levels throughout development in myelinating cells, particularly Schwann cells, and dorsal root ganglia sensory neurons. Fig4 protein and mRNA in CNS neurons were markedly diminished in adult versus embryonal animals. Spinal cord hemisection induced upregulation of Fig4 in adult spinal cord tissues that was associated with accumulation of lysosomes in neurons and glia. This accumulation appeared similar to the abnormal lysosomal storage observed in dorsal root ganglia of young fig4-null mice. The results suggest that Fig4 is involved in normal neural development and the maintenance of peripheral nervous system myelin. We speculate that adequate levels of Fig4 may be required to prevent neurons and glia from excessive lysosomal accumulation after injury and in neurodegeneration.
Manganese (Mn) is an essential ubiquitous trace element that is required for normal growth, development and cellular homeostasis. Exposure to high Mn levels causes a clinical disease characterized by extrapyramidal symptom resembling idiopathic Parkinson's disease (IPD). The present review focuses on the role of various transporters in maintaining brain Mn homeostasis along with recent methodological advances in real-time measurements of intracellular Mn levels. We also provide an overview on the role for Mn in IPD, discussing the similarities (and differences) between manganism and IPD, and the relationship between α-synuclein and Mn-related protein aggregation, as well as mitochondrial dysfunction, Mn and PD. Additional sections of the review discuss the link between Mn and Huntington's disease (HD), with emphasis on huntingtin function and the potential role for altered Mn homeostasis and toxicity in HD. We conclude with a brief survey on the potential role of Mn in the etiologies of Alzheimer's disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and prion disease. Where possible, we discuss the mechanistic commonalities inherent to Mn-induced neurotoxicity and neurodegenerative disorders.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.