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Cell Transplant. 2012;21(6):1161-75. doi: 10.3727/096368911X627444. Epub 2012 Mar 8.

Highly malignant behavior of a murine oligodendrocyte precursor cell line following transplantation into the demyelinated and nondemyelinated central nervous system.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Hannover, Germany.


Understanding the basic mechanisms that control CNS remyelination is of direct clinical relevance. Suitable model systems include the analysis of naturally occurring and genetically generated mouse mutants and the transplantation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) following experimental demyelination. However, aforementioned studies were exclusively carried out in rats and little is known about the in vivo behavior of transplanted murine OPCs. Therefore in the present study, we (i) established a model of ethidium bromide-induced demyelination of the caudal cerebellar peduncle (CCP) in the adult mouse and (ii) studied the distribution and marker expression of the murine OPC line BO-1 expressing the enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) 10 and 17 days after stereotaxic implantation. Injection of ethidium bromide (0.025%) in the CCP resulted in a severe loss of myelin, marked astrogliosis, and mild to moderate axonal alterations. Transplanted cells formed an invasive and liquorogenic metastasizing tumor, classified as murine giant cell glioblastoma. Transplanted BO-1 cells displayed substantially reduced CNPase expression as compared to their in vitro phenotype, low levels of MBP and GFAP, prominent upregulation of NG2, PDGFRα, nuclear p53, and an unaltered expression of signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT)-3. Summarized environmental signaling in the brain stem was not sufficient to trigger oligodendrocytic differentiation of BO-1 cells and seemed to block CNPase expression. Moreover, the lack of the remyelinating capacity was associated with tumor formation indicating that BO-1 cells may serve as a versatile experimental model to study tumorigenesis of glial tumors.

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