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Santana N.,IIBB CSIC | Santana N.,Research Center Biomedica En Red Of Salud Mental Cibersam | Mengod G.,IIBB CSIC | Mengod G.,CIBER ISCIII | And 2 more authors.
International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology | Year: 2013

The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is involved in behavioural control and cognitive processes that are altered in schizophrenia. The brainstem monoaminergic systems control PFC function, yet the cells/networks involved are not fully known. Serotonin (5-HT) and norepinephrine (NE) increase PFC neuronal activity through the activation of α1-adrenergic receptors (α1ARs) and 5-HT2A receptors (5-HT2ARs), respectively. Neurochemical and behavioural interactions between these receptors have been reported. Further, classical and atypical antipsychotic drugs share nm in vitro affinity for α1ARs while having preferential affinity for D2 and 5-HT2ARs, respectively. Using double in situ hybridization we examined the cellular expression of α1ARs in pyramidal (vGluT1-positive) and GABAergic (GAD65/67-positive) neurons in rat PFC and their co-localization with 5-HT2ARs. α1ARs are expressed by a high proportion of pyramidal (59-85%) and GABAergic (52-79%) neurons. The expression in pyramidal neurons exhibited a dorsoventral gradient, with a lower percentage of α1AR-positive neurons in infralimbic cortex compared to anterior cingulate and prelimbic cortex. The expression of α1A, α1B and α1D adrenergic receptors was segregated in different layers and subdivisions. In all them there is a high co-expression with 5-HT2ARs (∼80%). These observations indicate that NE controls the activity of most PFC pyramidal neurons via α1ARs, either directly or indirectly, via GABAergic interneurons. Antipsychotic drugs can thus modulate the activity of PFC via α1AR blockade. The high co-expression with 5-HT2ARs indicates a convergence of excitatory serotonergic and noradrenergic inputs onto the same neuronal populations. Moreover, atypical antipsychotics may exert a more powerful control of PFC function through the simultaneous blockade of α1ARs and 5-HT2ARs. © 2012 CINP.


Barbero-Camps E.,IIBB CSIC | Barbero-Camps E.,Hospital Clinic | Fernandez A.,IIBB CSIC | Fernandez A.,Hospital Clinic | And 7 more authors.
Human Molecular Genetics | Year: 2013

Current evidence indicates that excess brain cholesterol regulates amyloid-b (Ab) deposition, which in turn can regulate cholesterol homeostasis.Moreover, Ab neurotoxicity is potentiated, in part, by mitochondrial glutathione (mGSH) depletion. To better understand the relationship between alterations in cholesterol homeostasis and Alzheimer's disease (AD),wegenerated a triple transgenicmice featuring sterol regulatory element-binding protein-2 (SREBP-2) overexpression in combination withAPPswe/PS1δE9 mutations (APP/PS1) to examine key biochemical and functional characteristics of AD. UnlikeAPP/PS1 mice, APP/PS1/SREBP-2 mice exhibited early mitochondrial cholesterol loading and mGSHdepletion. Moreover,β-secretase activationandAbaccumulation, correlating with oxidative damage and neuroinflammation, were accelerated in APP/PS1/SREBP-2 mice compared with APP/PS1mice. Triple transgenicmicedisplayed increasedsynaptotoxicity reflectedbyloss ofsynaptophysin and neuronal death, resulting in early object-recognition memory impairment associated with deficits in spatial memory. Interestingly, tau pathologywaspresent inAPP/PS1/SREBP-2 mice, manifested by increased tau hyperphosphorylation and cleavage, activation of tau kinases and neurofibrillary tangle (NFT) formation without expression of mutated tau. Importantly, in vivo treatment with the cell permeable GSH ethyl ester, which restored mGSH levels in APP/PS1/SREBP-2 mice, partially prevented the activation of tau kinases, reduced abnormal tau aggregation and Ab deposition, resulting in attenuated synaptic degeneration. Taken together, these results show that cholesterol-mediated mGSH depletion is a key event in AD progression, accelerating the onset of key neuropathological hallmarks of the disease. Thus, therapeutic approaches to recover mGSH may represent a relevant strategy in the treatment of AD. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.


Amaro S.,Hospital Clinic | Urra X.,Hospital Clinic | Gomez-Choco M.,Hospital Clinic | Obach V.,Hospital Clinic | And 6 more authors.
Stroke | Year: 2011

Background and Purpose: Uric acid (UA) is a neuroprotective antioxidant that improves the benefits of alteplase in experimental ischemia. However, it is unknown whether endogenous UA also influences the response to thrombolysis in patients with stroke. Methods-A total of 317 consecutive patients treated with thrombolysis were included in a prospective stroke registry. Demographics, laboratory data, neurological course, and infarction volume were prospectively collected. Excellent outcome was defined as achieving a modified Rankin Scale score <2 at 90 days. Binary and ordinal logistic regression models were used to analyze modified Rankin Scale score at 90 days. Results-UA levels were significantly higher in patients with an excellent outcome than in patients with a poor outcome (5.82 [1.39] versus 5.42 [1.81], P=0.029). In multivariate models, increased UA levels (OR, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.03 to 1.49; P=0.025) were associated with an excellent outcome and with an increased risk of shifting to a better category across the modified Rankin Scale (OR, 1.19; 95% CI, 1.04 to 1.38; P=0.014) independently of the effect of confounders. The levels of UA and the volume of final infarction were inversely correlated (r=-0.216, P<0.001) and the inverse correlation remained after adjustment for age, sex, and baseline National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score (t value=-2.54, P=0.01). Significantly lower UA levels were found in patients with malignant middle cerebral artery infarction and parenchymal hemorrhage postthrombolysis. Conclusions: Increased UA serum levels are associated with better outcome in patients with stroke treated with reperfusion therapies. These results support the assessment of the potential neuroprotective role of the exogenous administration of UA in patients with stroke treated with thrombolysis. © 2010 American Heart Association, Inc.


Valente T.,University of Barcelona | Straccia M.,University of Barcelona | Gresa-Arribas N.,University of Barcelona | Dentesano G.,University of Barcelona | And 5 more authors.
Neurobiology of Aging | Year: 2013

The transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein δ (C/EBPδ) is expressed in activated astrocytes and microglia and can regulate the expression of potentially detrimental proinflammatory genes. Theobjective of this study was to determine the role of C/EBPδ in glial activation. To this end, glial activation was analyzed in primary glial cultures and in the central nervous system from wild type and C/EBPδ-/- mice. Invitro studies showed that the expression of proinflammatory genes nitric oxide (NO)synthase-2, cyclooxygenase-2, and interleukin (IL)-6 in glial cultures, and the neurotoxicity elicited by microglia in neuron-microglia cocultures, were decreased in the absence of C/EBPδ when cultures were treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon γ, but not with LPS alone. In C/EBPδ-/- mice, systemic LPS-induced brain expression of NO synthase-2, tumor necrosis factor-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 was attenuated. Finally, increased C/EBPδ nuclear expression was observed in microglial cells from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patients and G93A-SOD1 mice spinal cord. These results demonstrate that C/EBPδ plays a key role in the regulation of proinflammatory gene expression in glial activation and suggest that C/EBPδ inhibition has potential for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, in particular, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.


Closa D.,IIBB CSIC
Free Radical Research | Year: 2013

There is a convincing body of evidence that oxidative stress is involved in the pathogenesis of acute pancreatitis. The effects of different radical scavengers suggested that reactive oxygen metabolites are generated at very early stage of disease and contribute to amplify the pancreatic damage. Oxidative stress is also involved in the progression of the disease from a local damage to a systemic organ failure. However, therapeutic use of antioxidants failed to clearly show a clinical benefit in different trials. Therefore, although antioxidants alone seem to be not enough for the treatment of severe acute pancreatitis, future combined therapeutic strategies should include antioxidants in its composition. © 2013 Informa UK, Ltd.


Font-Nieves M.,IIBB CSIC | Sans-Fons M.G.,IIBB CSIC | Gorina R.,IIBB CSIC | Bonfill-Teixidor E.,IIBB CSIC | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Biological Chemistry | Year: 2012

Pathological conditions and pro-inflammatory stimuli in the brain induce cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), a key enzyme in arachidonic acid metabolism mediating the production of prostanoids that, among other actions, have strong vasoactive properties. Although low basal cerebral COX-2 expression has been reported, COX-2 is strongly induced by pro-inflammatory challenges, whereas COX-1 is constitutively expressed. However, the contribution of these enzymes in prostanoid formation varies depending on the stimuli and cell type. Astrocyte feet surround cerebral microvessels and release molecules that can trigger vascular responses. Here, we investigate the regulation of COX-2 induction and its role in prostanoid generation after a pro-inflammatory challenge with the bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in astroglia. Intracerebral administration of LPS in rodents induced strong COX-2 expression mainly in astroglia and microglia, whereas COX-1 expression was predominant in microglia and did not increase. In cultured astrocytes, LPS strongly induced COX-2 and microsomal prostaglandin-E 2(PGE 2) synthase-1, mediated by the MyD88-dependent NFκB pathway and influenced by mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways. Studies in COX-deficient cells and using COX inhibitors demonstrated that COX-2 mediated the high production of PGE 2 and, to a lesser extent, other prostanoids after LPS. In contrast, LPS down-regulated COX-1 in an MyD88-dependent fashion, and COX-1 deficiency increased PGE 2 production after LPS. The results show that astrocytes respond to LPS by a COX- 2-dependent production of prostanoids, mainly vasoactive PGE 2, and suggest that the coordinated down-regulation of COX-1 facilitates PGE 2 production after TLR-4 activation. These effects might induce cerebral blood flow responses to brain inflammation. © 2012 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.


Bonjoch L.,IIBB CSIC | Gea-Sorli S.,IIBB CSIC | Closa D.,IIBB CSIC
Pancreatology | Year: 2015

Background Necrosis of adipose tissue is a common complication of acute pancreatitis. The areas of steatonecrosis become a source of inflammatory mediators, including chemically modified fatty acids which could influence the progression of the systemic inflammation. In an experimental model of acute pancreatitis we analyzed the effects of lipids generated by two representative areas of adipose tissue on the switch to the M1 phenotype in macrophages. Methods Pancreatitis was induced in rats by intraductal administration of 5% taurocholate and after 6 h, lipids from retroperitoneal, mesenteric or epididymal adipose tissues were collected. Lipid uptake, phenotype polarization and the activation of PPARγ and NFκB were evaluated in macrophages treated with these lipids. Results After induction of pancreatitis, lipids from visceral adipose tissue promote the switch to an increased pro-inflammatory phenotype in macrophages. This effect is not related with a higher activation of NFκB but with an interfering effect on the activation of M2 phenotype. Conclusions During acute pancreatitis, lipids generated by some areas of adipose tissue interfere on the M2 polarization of macrophages, thus resulting in a more intense pro-inflammatory M1 response. © 2015, IAP and EPC. Published by Elsevier India, a division of Reed Elsevier India Pvt. Ltd. All rights reserved.


Gloria Sans-Fons M.,IIBB CSIC | Sole S.,IIBB CSIC | Sanfeliu C.,IIBB CSIC | Planas A.M.,IIBB CSIC
American Journal of Pathology | Year: 2010

Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) degrade the extracellular matrix and carry out key functions in cell development, cancer, injury, and regeneration. In addition to its well recognized extracellular action, functional intracellular MMP activity under certain conditions is supported by increasing evidence. In this study, we observed higher gelatinase activity by in situ zymography and increased MMP-9 immunoreactivity in human neuroblastoma cells and in bone marrow macrophages undergoing mitosis compared with resting cells. We studied the pattern of immunoreactivity at the different stages of cell division by confocal microscopy. Immunostaining with different monoclonal antibodies against MMP-9 revealed a precise, dynamic, and well orchestrated localization of MMP-9 at the different stages of cell division. The cellular distribution of MMP-9 staining was studied in relation to that of microtubules. The spatial pattern of MMP-9 immunoreactivity suggested some participation in both the reorganization of the nuclear content and the process of chromatid segmentation. We then used several MMP-9 inhibitors to find out whether MMP-9 might be involved in the cell cycle. These drugs impaired the entry of cells into mitosis, as revealed by flow cytometry, and reduced cell culture growth. In addition, the silencing of MMP-9 expression with small interfering RNA also reduced cell growth. Taken together, these results suggest that intracellular MMP-9 is involved in the process of cell division in neuroblastoma cells and in primary cultures of macrophages. Copyright © American Society for Investigative Pathology.


Masana M.,IIBB CSIC | Bortolozzi A.,IIBB CSIC | Artigas F.,IIBB CSIC
International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology | Year: 2011

The superior efficacy of atypical vs. classical antipsychotic drugs to treat negative symptoms and cognitive deficits in schizophrenia appears related to their ability to enhance mesocortical dopamine (DA) function. Given that noradrenergic (NE) transmission contributes to cortical DA output, we assessed the ability of NE-targeting drugs to modulate DA release in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAc), with the aim of selectively increasing mesocortical DA. Extracellular DA was measured using brain microdialysis in rat mPFC and NAc after local/systemic drug administration, electrical stimulation and selective brain lesions. Local GBR12909 [a selective DA transporter (DAT) inhibitor] administration increased DA output more in NAc than in mPFC whereas reboxetine [a selective NE transporter (NET) inhibitor] had an opposite regional profile. DA levels increased comparably in both regions of control rats after local nomifensine (DAT+NET inhibitor) infusion, but this effect was much lower in PFC of NElesioned rats (DSP-4) and in NAc of 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. Electrical stimulation of the locus coeruleus preferentially enhanced DA output in mPFC. Consistently, the administration of reboxetine+RX821002 (an a2-adrenoceptor antagonist) dramatically enhanced DA output in mPFC (but not NAc). This effect also occurred when reboxetine+RX821002 were co-administered with haloperidol or clozapine. The preferential contribution of the NE system to PFC DA allows selective enhancement of DA transmission by simultaneously blocking NET and a2-adrenoceptors, thus preventing the autoreceptor-mediated negative feedback on NE activity. Our results highlight the importance of NET and a2-adrenoceptors as targets for treating negative/cognitive symptoms in schizophrenia and related psychiatric disorders. © 2010 CINP.


Current antidepressants, which inhibit the serotonin transporter (SERT), display limited efficacy and slow onset of action. Here, we show that partial reduction of SERT expression by small interference RNA (SERT-siRNA) decreased immobility in the tail suspension test, displaying an antidepressant potential. Moreover, short-term SERT-siRNA treatment modified mouse brain variables considered to be key markers of antidepressant action: reduced expression and function of 5-HT(1A)-autoreceptors, elevated extracellular serotonin in forebrain and increased neurogenesis and expression of plasticity-related genes (BDNF, VEGF, Arc) in hippocampus. Remarkably, these effects occurred much earlier and were of greater magnitude than those evoked by long-term fluoxetine treatment. These findings highlight the critical role of SERT in serotonergic function and show that the reduction of SERT expression regulates serotonergic neurotransmission more potently than pharmacological blockade of SERT. The use of siRNA-targeting genes in serotonin neurons (SERT, 5-HT(1A)-autoreceptor) may be a novel therapeutic strategy to develop fast-acting antidepressants.

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