The Sahlgrenska Academy

Göteborg, Sweden

The Sahlgrenska Academy

Göteborg, Sweden
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Andersson D.R.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Bjornsson E.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Bergquist F.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Nissbrandt H.,The Sahlgrenska Academy
Experimental Neurology | Year: 2010

Nigro-striatal neurons release dopamine not only from their axon terminals in the striatum, but also from somata and dendrites in the substantia nigra. Somatodendritic dopamine release in the substantia nigra can facilitate motor function by mechanisms that may act independently of axon terminal dopamine release in the striatum. The dopamine neurons in the substantia nigra receive a cholinergic input from the pedunculopontine nucleus. Despite recent efforts to introduce this nucleus as a potential target for deep brain stimulation to treat motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease; and the well-known antiparkinsonian effects of anticholinergic drugs; the cholinergic influence on somatodendritic dopamine release is not well understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the possible regulation of locomotor-induced dopamine release in the substantia nigra by endogenous acetylcholine release. In intact and 6-OHDA hemi-lesioned animals alike, the muscarinic antagonist scopolamine, when perfused in the substantia nigra, amplified the locomotor-induced somatodendritic dopamine release to approximately 200% of baseline, compared to 120-130% of baseline in vehicle-treated animals. A functional importance of nigral muscarinic receptor activation was demonstrated in hemi-lesioned animals, where motor performance was significantly improved by scopolamine to 82% of pre-lesion performance, as compared to 56% in vehicle-treated controls. The results indicate that muscarinic activity in the substantia nigra is of functional importance in an animal Parkinson's disease model, and strengthen the notion that nigral dopaminergic regulation of motor activity/performance is independent of striatal dopamine release. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Tobias J.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Moerman L.,Ministry of Health | Bassal R.,The Israel Center for Disease Control | Green M.,The Israel Center for Disease Control | Green M.,Haifa University
Vaccine | Year: 2010

This study was undertaken to estimate the magnitude of Bordetella pertussis infections in a highly vaccinated population in Israel in order to evaluate the relationship between clinical notification data and serology-based evidence of infection. A cross-sectional survey was conducted on a total of 1982 serum samples from the National Serum Bank, collected from January 2000 through December 2001, in order to monitor high levels of pertussis toxin (PT) IgG antibody indicative of recent B. pertussis infection, by standardized methods. The estimation yielded an infection incidence rate of 2448 per 100,000 population (≥3 years of age) for the year 2000 compared to an annual incidence of reported pertussis of 5.6 per 100,000 for the same period. The peaks of estimated incidence of infection were found in the groups of 15-19-year olds (5245 per 100,000) and older than 60 years (6469 per 100,000), whereas the majority of clinical pertussis cases were reported for the 10-14-year olds (20.5 per 100,000). The findings clearly show that despite a high vaccination coverage rate (>93%), there is still a considerable circulation of B. pertussis, particularly in adolescents and elderly. Population-based serosurveillance for pertussis offers the potential to assist interpretation of trends independent of notification and diagnostic bias. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Johnsson M.,Linköping University | Gustafson I.,Linköping University | Rubin C.-J.,Uppsala University | Sahlqvist A.-S.,Uppsala University | And 7 more authors.
PLoS Genetics | Year: 2012

Domestication is one of the strongest forms of short-term, directional selection. Although selection is typically only exerted on one or a few target traits, domestication can lead to numerous changes in many seemingly unrelated phenotypes. It is unknown whether such correlated responses are due to pleiotropy or linkage between separate genetic architectures. Using three separate intercrosses between wild and domestic chickens, a locus affecting comb mass (a sexual ornament in the chicken) and several fitness traits (primarily medullary bone allocation and fecundity) was identified. This locus contains two tightly-linked genes, BMP2 and HAO1, which together produce the range of pleiotropic effects seen. This study demonstrates the importance of pleiotropy (or extremely close linkage) in domestication. The nature of this pleiotropy also provides insights into how this sexual ornament could be maintained in wild populations. © 2012 Johnsson et al.

Hampel H.,Trinity College Dublin | Hampel H.,Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich | Hampel H.,Goethe University Frankfurt | Blennow K.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | And 4 more authors.
Experimental Gerontology | Year: 2010

Advances in our understanding of tau-mediated neurodegeneration in Alzheimer's disease (AD) are moving this disease pathway to center stage for the development of biomarkers and disease modifying drug discovery efforts. Immunoassays were developed detecting total (t-tau) and tau phosphorylated at specific epitopes (p-tauX) in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), methods to analyse tau in blood are at the experimental beginning. Clinical research consistently demonstrated CSF t- and p-tau increased in AD compared to controls. Measuring these tau species proved informative for classifying AD from relevant differential diagnoses. Tau phosphorylated at threonine 231 (p-tau231) differentiated between AD and frontotemporal dementia, tau phosphorylated at serine 181 (p-tau181) enhanced classification between AD and dementia with Lewy bodies. T- and p-tau are considered "core" AD biomarkers that have been successfully validated by controlled large-scale multi-center studies. Tau biomarkers are implemented in clinical trials to reflect biological activity, mechanisms of action of compounds, support enrichment of target populations, provide endpoints for proof-of-concept and confirmatory trials on disease modification. World-wide quality control initiatives are underway to set required methodological and protocol standards. Discussions with regulatory authorities gain momentum defining the role of tau biomarkers for trial designs and how they may be further qualified for surrogate marker status. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Harandi A.M.,the Sahlgrenska Academy | Medaglini D.,University of Siena | Shattock R.J.,St George's, University of London
Vaccine | Year: 2010

The workshop on vaccine adjuvants was held in July of 2009 at the European Commission in Brussels, with the goal of identifying key scientific priorities as they pertain to the development of effective vaccines against life-threatening diseases especially those associated with poverty, including HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis as well as neglected infectious diseases. On the basis of new advances in adjuvant research and related technology as well as potential challenges and roadblocks, six priorities were identified to accelerate development of improved or novel vaccine adjuvants for human use.

Bergman O.,Gothenburg University | Hakansson A.,Gothenburg University | Westberg L.,Gothenburg University | Nordenstrom K.,Gothenburg University | And 6 more authors.
Neurobiology of Aging | Year: 2010

PITX3 is a transcription factor of importance for the differentiation and survival of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, the gene of which is disrupted in a putative mouse model for Parkinson's disease (PD). The A-allele of a HapMap tagging SNP (rs4919621) that was genotyped in a population of 361 PD patients, 69 of which had early onset, and in 333 controls, was significantly more common in PD patients with an early age of onset when compared either to controls (p = 0.002) or to PD patients with late onset (p = 0.001). In contrast, a previous finding suggesting a SNP (rs3758549) in the putative promoter region of the PITX3 gene to be associated with PD could not be replicated. © 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Friberg P.A.,the Sahlgrenska Academy | Larsson D.G.J.,the Sahlgrenska Academy | Billig H.,the Sahlgrenska Academy
Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology | Year: 2010

Progesterone, acting via the nuclear progesterone receptor (PGR), reduces apoptosis in periovulatory granulosa cells, and is a likely mediator of the anti-atretic actions of LH. The underlying mechanisms, however, have not been clearly defined. In this study, we sought to identify progesterone-mediated transcriptional changes involved in apoptosis regulation. Granulosa cells from immature, gonadotropin-primed female rats were treated in vitro with 100 nM of the PGR antagonist Org 31710. Transcriptional effects were analyzed after 5 and 22 h of incubation using microarrays, and the expression of 85 genes was subsequently measured by quantitative PCR. Follow-up experiments focused on genes related to the functional group "apoptosis". We have identified novel, early gene targets of PGR that may be involved in the control of apoptosis and other biologically significant functions in periovulatory granulosa cells. This study expands our knowledge of events that occur during the processes of ovulation and luteinization. © 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Zetterberg H.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Blennow K.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Hanse E.,The Sahlgrenska Academy
Experimental Gerontology | Year: 2010

Intense research during the past decade has aimed at dissecting the molecular pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Primarily, the focus has been directed towards brain amyloid pathology and its relation to synaptic and neuronal loss. Clearly, AD is associated with accumulation of amyloid β (Aβ) in the brain. Further, the results of many experimental studies suggest that certain forms of Aβ may act as initiators in the disease process with potent toxic effects at the synaptic level. Molecular aberrations in the AD brain are reflected in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Core CSF biomarkers include secreted Aβ and amyloid precursor protein (APP) isoforms, Aβ oligomers and β-site APP-cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1). This article reviews recent research advances on CSF and plasma Aβ-related biomarkers for AD and how they may reflect pathogenic changes in AD-affected neuronal networks. We also consider their usefulness in clinical practice and in clinical trials. © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Hansson E.,The Sahlgrenska Academy
Scandinavian Journal of Pain | Year: 2010

Nociceptive and neuropathic pain signals are known to result from noxious stimuli, which are converted into electrical impulses within tissue nociceptors. There is a complex equilibrium of pain-signalling and pain-relieving pathways connecting PNS and CNS. Drugs against long-term pain are today directed against increased neuronal excitability, mostly with less success. An injury often starts with acute physiological pain, which becomes inflammatory, nociceptive, or neuropathic, and may be transferred into long-term pain. Recently a low-grade inflammation was identified in the spinal cord and along the pain pathways to thalamus and the parietal cortex. This neuroinflammation is due to activation of glial cells, especially microglia, with production of cytokines and other inflammatory mediators within the CNS. Additionally, substances released to the blood from the injured region influence the blood-brain barrier, and give rise to an increased permeability of the tight junctions of the capillary endothelial cells, leading to passage of blood cells into the CNS. These cells are transformed into reactive microglia. If the inflammation turns into a pathological state the astrocytes will be activated. They are coupled into networks and respond to substances released by the capillary endothelial cells, to cytokines released from microglia, and to neurotransmitters and peptides released from neurons. As the astrocytes occupy a strategic position between the vasculature and synapses, they monitor the neuronal activity and transmitter release. Increased release of glutamate and ATP leads to disturbances in Ca2+ signalling, increased production of cytokines and free radicals, attenuation of the astrocyte glutamate transport capacity, and conformational changes in the astrocytic cytoskeleton, the actin filaments, which can lead to formation and rebuilding of new synapses. New neuronal contacts are established for maintaining and spreading pain sensation with the astrocytic networks as bridges. Thereby the glial cells can maintain the pain sensation even after the original injury has healed, and convert the pain into long-term by altering neuronal excitability. It can even be experienced from other parts of the body. As astrocytes are intimate co-players with neurons in the CNS, more knowledge on astrocyte responses to inflammatory activators may give new insight in our understanding of mechanisms of low-grade inflammation underlying long-term pain states and pain spreading. Novel treatment strategies would be to restore glial cell function and thereby attenuate the neuroinflammation. © 2010 Scandinavian Association for the Study of Pain.

Lundborg C.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Hahn-Zoric M.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Biber B.,The Sahlgrenska Academy | Hansson E.,The Sahlgrenska Academy
Journal of Neuroimmunology | Year: 2010

Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) is involved in inflammation and pain, roles which remain to be delineated clinically. We aimed to evaluate the role of central nervous and peripheral GDNF in long-term pain patients and in controls by analysing intrathecal and blood concentrations of GDNF. Simultaneous measurements of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β, TNF-α and IL-6, anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 and chemokine IL-8 served to define inflammatory responses. Generally, blood levels of GDNF were higher than corresponding intrathecal levels. Pain was associated with levels of GDNF that were increased intrathecally, but decreased in blood. IL-8 was uniformly higher in pain patients. © 2010.

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