Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 19911428
Stem Cells 2010 Jan;28(1):127-39
The intrinsic inability of the central nervous system to efficiently repair traumatic injuries renders transplantation of neural stem/precursor cells (NPCs) a promising approach towards repair of brain lesions. In this study, NPCs derived from embryonic day 14.5 mouse cortex were genetically modified via transduction with a lentiviral vector to overexpress the neuronal lineage-specific regulator BM88/Cend1 that coordinates cell cycle exit and differentiation of neuronal precursors. BM88/Cend1-overexpressing NPCs exhibiting enhanced differentiation into neurons in vitro were transplanted in a mouse model of acute cortical injury and analyzed in comparison with control NPCs. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that a smaller proportion of BM88/Cend1-overexpressing NPCs, as compared with control NPCs, expressed the neural stem cell marker nestin 1 day after transplantation, while the percentage of nestin-positive cells was significantly reduced thereafter in both types of cells, being almost extinct 1 week post-grafting. Both types of cells did not proliferate up to 4 weeks in vivo, thus minimizing the risk of tumorigenesis. In comparison with control NPCs, Cend1-overexpressing NPCs generated more neurons and less glial cells 1 month after transplantation in the lesioned cortex whereas the majority of graft-derived neurons were identified as GABAergic interneurons. Furthermore, transplantation of Cend1-overexpressing NPCs resulted in a marked reduction of astrogliosis around the lesioned area as compared to grafts of control NPCs. Our results suggest that transplantation of Cend1-overexpressing NPCs exerts beneficial effects on tissue regeneration by enhancing the number of generated neurons and restricting the formation of astroglial scar, in a mouse model of cortical brain injury.