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Latest publications

This page shows the most relevant new publications (including preprints) from the last month relating to the genetic control of adult neurogenesis. The manuscripts have been selected by our text mining service and the page is continually updated. Click on the arrows below each item to link out to the source.


Hippocampal neurogenesis Jump to subventricular/subependymal neurogenesis

Sustained correction of hippocampal neurogenic and cognitive deficits after a brief treatment by Nutlin-3 in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most prevalent inherited intellectual disability and one of the most common monogenic forms of autism, is caused by a loss of fragile X messenger ribonucleoprotein 1 (FMR1). We have previously shown that FMR1 represses the levels and activities of ubiquitin ligase MDM2 in young adult FMR1-deficient mice, and treatment by a MDM2 inhibitor Nutlin-3 rescues both hippocampal neurogenic and cognitive deficits in FMR1-deficient mice when analyzed shortly after the administration. However, it is unknown whether Nutlin-3 treatment can have long-lasting therapeutic effects. We treated 2-month-old young adult FMR1-deficient mice with Nutlin-3 for 10 days and then assessed the persistent effect of Nutlin-3 on both cognitive functions and adult neurogenesis when mice were 6-month-old mature adults. To investigate the mechanisms underlying the persistent effects of Nutlin-3, we analyzed the proliferation and differentiation of neural stem/progenitor cells isolated from these mice and assessed the transcriptome of the hippocampal tissues of treated mice. We found that transient treatment with Nutlin-3 of 2-month-old young adult FMR1-deficient mice prevents the emergence of neurogenic and cognitive deficits in mature adult FXS mice at 6 months of age. We further found that the long-lasting restoration of neurogenesis and cognitive function might not be mediated by changing intrinsic properties of adult neural stem cells. Transcriptomic analysis of the hippocampal tissue demonstrated that transient Nultin-3 treatment leads to significant expression changes in genes related to the extracellular matrix, secreted factors, and cell membrane proteins in the FMR1-deficient hippocampus. Our data indicates that transient Nutlin-3 treatment in young adults leads to long-lasting neurogenic and behavioral changes likely through modulating adult neurogenic niche that impact adult neural stem cells. Our results demonstrate that cognitive impairments in FXS may be prevented by an early intervention through Nutlin-3 treatment.
The NOP antagonist BTRX-246040 increases stress resilience in mice without affecting adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus.
Nociceptin/orphanin FQ (N/OFQ) is the endogenous ligand of an inhibitory G protein coupled receptor named N/OFQ peptide receptor (NOP). Clinical and preclinical findings suggest that the blockade of the NOP signaling induces antidepressant-like effects. Additionally, the blockade of the NOP receptor during inescapable stress exposure prevented the acquisition of the helplessness phenotype, suggesting that NOP antagonists are able to increase stress resilience. BTRX-246040 (aka LY2940094) is a NOP receptor antagonist with high affinity, potency and selectivity for the NOP over classical opioid receptors. BTRX-246040 is under development for the treatment of depression, eating disorders and alcohol abuse and it already entered clinical trials. In the present study, the antidepressant effects of BTRX-246040 were evaluated in mice subjected to the forced swimming test and to the learned helplessness model of depression. Additionally, the ability of BTRX-246040 to prevent the development of the helpless behavior and to modulate adult hippocampal neurogenesis has been investigated. BTRX-246040 (30 mg/kg, i.p.) produced antidepressant-like effects in the forced swimming test and in the learned helplessness model. More interestingly, when given before the stress induction sessions it was able to prevent the development of the helplessness behavior. Under these experimental conditions, BTRX-246040 did not modulate adult hippocampal neurogenesis, neither in naive nor in stressed mice. This study, performed with a clinically viable ligand, further corroborates growing evidence indicating that the blockade of the NOP signaling may provide an innovative strategy for the treatment of stress related psychopathologies.

Subventricular/subependymal neurogenesis Jump to hippocampal neurogenesis

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