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Politis M.,Imperial College London | Wu K.,Imperial College London | Loane C.,Imperial College London | Quinn N.P.,University College London | And 6 more authors.
Science Translational Medicine | Year: 2012

Cell therapy studies in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) have been confined to intrastriatal transplantation of dopamine-rich fetal mesencephalic tissue in efforts to improve motor performance. Although some PD patients receiving the dopamine-rich grafts showed improvements in motor symptoms due to replacement of dopaminergic neurons, they still suffered from nonmotor symptoms including depression, fatigue, visual hallucinations, and sleep problems. Using functional imaging and clinical evaluation of motor and nonmotor symptoms in three PD patients transplanted with intrastriatal fetal grafts 13 to 16 years previously, we assessed whether reestablishment of dopaminergic neuronal networks is sufficient to improve a broad range of symptoms. At 13 to 16 years after transplantation, dopaminergic innervation was restored to normal levels in basal ganglia and preserved in a number of extrabasal ganglia areas. These changes were associated with long-lasting relief of motor symptoms. Then, we assessed the integrity of their serotonergic and norepinephrine neuronal systems using [ 11C]DASB {[ 11C]3-amino-4- (2- dimethylaminomethylphenylthio) benzonitrile} positron emission tomography (PET) and 18F-dopa PET, respectively. 18F-Dopa uptake in the locus coeruleus was within the normal range. In contrast, [ 11C]DASB uptake in the raphe nuclei and regions receiving serotonergic projections was markedly reduced. These results indicate ongoing degeneration of serotonergic raphe nuclei and their projections to regions involved in the regulation of sleep, arousal, feeding, satiety, mood, and emotion. Our findings indicate that future cell-based therapies using fetal tissue or stem cells in PD patients may require additional grafts of serotonergic neurons to relieve nonmotor symptoms by restoring serotonergic neurotransmission in specific cerebral targets.


Johansson B.B.,Wallenberg Neuroscience Center
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience | Year: 2012

The brain has a large capacity for automatic simultaneous processing and integration of sensory information. Combining information from different sensory modalities facilitates our ability to detect, discriminate, and recognize sensory stimuli, and learning is often optimal in a multisensory environment. Currently used multisensory stimulation methods in stroke rehabilitation include motor imagery, action observation, training with a mirror or in a virtual environment, and various kinds of music therapy. Non-invasive brain stimulation has showed promising preliminary results in aphasia and neglect. Patient heterogeneity and the interaction of age, gender, genes, and environment are discussed. Randomized controlled longitudinal trials starting earlier post-stroke are needed. The advance in brain network science and neuroimaging enabling longitudinal studies of structural and functional networks are likely to have an important impact on patient selection for specific interventions in future stroke rehabilitation. It is proposed that we should pay more attention to age, gender, and laterality in clinical studies. © 2012 Johansson.


Politis M.,Imperial College London | Wu K.,Imperial College London | Loane C.,Imperial College London | Quinn N.P.,University College London | And 6 more authors.
Science Translational Medicine | Year: 2010

Troublesome involuntary movements in the absence of dopaminergic medication, so-called off-medication dyskinesias, are a serious adverse effect of fetal neural grafts that hinders the development of cell-based therapies for Parkinson's disease. The mechanisms underlying these dyskinesias are not well understood, and it is not known whether they are the same as in the dyskinesias induced by L-dopa treatment. Using in vivo brain imaging, we show excessive serotonergic innervation in the grafted striatum of two patients with Parkinson's disease, who had exhibited major motor recovery after transplantation with dopamine-rich fetal mesencephalic tissue but had later developed off-medication dyskinesias. The dyskinesias were markedly attenuated by systemic administration of a serotonin [5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)] receptor (5-HT1A) agonist, which dampens transmitter release from serotonergic neurons, indicating that the dyskinesias were caused by the serotonergic hyperinnervation. Our observations suggest strategies for avoiding and treating graft-induced dyskinesias that result from cell therapies for Parkinson's disease with fetal tissue or stem cells.


Politis M.,Imperial College London | Oertel W.H.,University of Marburg | Wu K.,Imperial College London | Quinn N.P.,University College London | And 6 more authors.
Movement Disorders | Year: 2011

Graft-induced dyskinesias are a serious complication after neural transplantation in Parkinson's disease. One patient with Parkinson's disease, treated with fetal grafts 14 years ago and deep brain stimulation 6 years ago, showed marked improvement of motor symptoms but continued to suffer from OFF-medication graft-induced dyskinesias. The patient received a series of clinical and imaging assessments. Positron emission tomography and single-photon emission computed tomography 14 years posttransplantation revealed an elevated serotonin/dopamine transporter ratio in the grafted striatum compatible with serotonergic hyperinnervation. Inhibition of serotonin neuron activity by systemic administration of a 5-HT 1A agonist suppressed graft-induced dyskinesias. Our data provide further evidence that serotonergic neurons mediate graft-induced dyskinesias in Parkinson's disease. Achieving a normal striatal serotonin/dopamine transporter ratio following transplantation of fetal tissue or stem cells should be necessary to avoid the development of graft-induced dyskinesias. © 2011 Movement Disorder Society.


Jackson J.,Wallenberg Neuroscience Center | Jackson J.,Lund University | Jackson J.,Lilly Research Laboratories | Chugh D.,Wallenberg Neuroscience Center | And 12 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Pathological conditions affect several stages of neurogenesis in the adult brain, including proliferation, survival, cell fate, migration, and functional integration. Here we explored how a pathological environment modulates the heterogeneous afferent synaptic input that shapes the functional properties of newly formed neurons. We analyzed the expression of adhesion molecules and other synaptic proteins on adult-born hippocampal neurons formed after electrically-induced partial status epilepticus (pSE). New cells were labeled with a GFP-retroviral vector one week after pSE. One and three weeks thereafter, synaptic proteins were present on dendritic spines and shafts, but without differences between pSE and control group. In contrast, at six weeks, we found fewer dendritic spines and decreased expression of the scaffolding protein PSD-95 on spines, without changes in expression of the adhesion molecules N-cadherin or neuroligin-1, primarily located at excitatory synapses. Moreover, we detected an increased expression of the inhibitory scaffolding protein gephyrin in newborn but not mature neurons after SE. However, this increase was not accompanied by a difference in GABA expression, and there was even a region-specific decrease in the adhesion molecule neuroligin-2 expression, both in newborn and mature neurons. Neuroligin-2 clusters co-localized with presynaptic cholecystokinin terminals, which were also reduced. The expression of neuroligin-4 and glycine receptor was unchanged. Increased postsynaptic clustering of gephyrin, without an accompanying increase in GABAergic input or neuroligin-2 and -4 expression, the latter important for clustering of GABA A and glycine receptors, respectively, could imply an increased but altered inhibitory connectivity specific for newborn neurons. The changes were transient and expression of both gephyrin and NL-2 was normalized 3 months post-SE. Our findings indicate that seizure-induced brain pathology alters the sub-cellular expression of synaptic adhesion molecules and scaffolding proteins related to particularly inhibitory but also excitatory synapses, which may yield functional consequences for the integration of adult-born neurons. © 2012 Jackson et al.

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