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J Neurosci. 2014 Jun 11;34(24):8318-23. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2501-13.2014.

Reducing glypican-4 in ES cells improves recovery in a rat model of Parkinson's disease by increasing the production of dopaminergic neurons and decreasing teratoma formation.

Author information

1
Aix-Marseille University, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Marseille, IBDM, UMR7288, Marseille, France.
2
Aix-Marseille University, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Marseille, IBDM, UMR7288, Marseille, France rosanna.dono@univ-amu.fr harold.cremer@univ-amu.fr.

Abstract

The heparan sulfate proteoglycan Glypican 4 (Gpc4) is strongly expressed in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells where it controls the maintenance of self-renewal by modulating Wnt/β-catenin signaling activities. Here we show that mouse ES cells carrying a hypomorphic Gpc4 allele, in a single-step neuronal differentiation protocol, show increased differentiation into dopaminergic neurons expressing tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and nuclear receptor related-1 protein (Nurr1) 1. In contrast to wild-type cells, these differentiating Gpc4-mutant cells expressed high levels of DOPA decarboxylase and the dopamine transporter, two markers expressed by fully mature dopaminergic neurons. Intrastriatal transplantation of Gpc4 hypomorphic cells into a 6-OHDA rat model for Parkinson's disease improved motor behavior in the cylinder test and amphetamine-induced rotations at a higher level than transplanted wild-type cells. Importantly, Gpc4 hypomorphic cell grafts, in contrast to wild-type cells, did not generate teratomas in the host brains, leading to strongly enhanced animal survival. Therefore, control of Gpc4 activity level represents a new potential strategy to reduce ES cell tumorigenic features while at the same time increasing neuronal differentiation and integration.

PMID:
24920634
DOI:
10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2501-13.2014
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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