Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A barrier against brain stem cell aging

18.09.2015

Neural stem cells generate new neurons throughout life in the mammalian brain. However, with advancing age the potential for regeneration in the brain dramatically declines. Scientists of the University of Zurich now identified a novel mechanism of how neural stem cells stay relatively free of aging-induced damage. A diffusion barrier regulates the sorting of damaged proteins during cell division.

Yeast are good for making wine, bread, and brewing beer. But they are also a good model for neural stem cells in the mammalian brain. It was known that with every division cellular aging factors are asymmetrically distributed between the mother and the daughter cell, allowing for rejuvenation and full life span of the daughter independent of the age of the mother cell. At least partially responsible for this is the presence of a diffusion barrier that restricts movement of molecules from one side to the other side of the cell during cell division.


Dividing neural stem cells establish a diffusion barrier. It participates in the asymmetric segregation of aging factors such as ubiquitinated, damaged proteins (red) during cell division.

UZH


The strength of the diffusion barrier weakens with advancing age and leads to reduced asymmetry of damaged protein (red) segregation

UZH

Disposing of age

A group of scientists led by Sebastian Jessberger of the Brain Research Institute showed now that also the stem cells of the adult mouse brain asymmetrically segregate aging factors between the mother and the daughter cells.

Responsible for this is a diffusion barrier in the endoplasmic reticulum (a channel system within the cell that is for example important for protein synthesis and transport). The barrier prevents retention of damaged proteins in the stem cell daughter cell keeping the stem cells relatively clean. «Neural stem cell divisions appear to be much more asymmetric than we had previously anticipated,» states Darcie Moore, postdoc in the group of Sebastian Jessberger and lead author of the study.

Barrier weakening

In addition, the authors of the new study published in «Science» found that the strength of the barrier weakens with advancing age. This leads to reduced asymmetry of damaged protein segregation with increasing age of the stem cell. This could be one of the mechanisms responsible for the reduced regeneration capacity in the aged brain as stem cells that retain larger amounts of damaged proteins require longer for the next cell division.

Sebastian Jessberger says: «This is an exciting new mechanism involved in stem cell division and aging. But as of now we are only just beginning to understand the molecular constituents and the true meaning of the barrier for stem cell division in the brain.» One key question to be answered is whether the barrier is established in all somatic stem cells of the body. The answer to this question may open new routes to target age-dependent alterations of stem cell activity in human disease.

Other researchers involved were Gregor-Alexander Pilz, Brain Research Institute, UZH, Marcos Arauzo-Bravo, Biodonostia Health Research Institute, San Sebastian and Yves Barral, Institute of Biochemistry, ETH Zurich. The work was supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Zurich Neuroscience Center of UZH and ETH Zurich, the EMBO Young Investigator Program, the ETH Fellow program, the ERC, and the Human Frontier Science Program.

Literature:
Darcie L. Moore, Gregor-Alexander Pilz, Marcos J. Araúzo-Bravo, Yves Barral, Sebastian Jessberger. A mechanism for the segregation of age in mammalian neural stem cells. Science, 17 September 2015. doi:10.1126/science.aac9868

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.mediadesk.uzh.ch/articles_en.html

Evelyne Brönnimann | Universität Zürich

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multi-institutional collaboration uncovers how molecular machines assemble
02.12.2016 | Salk Institute

nachricht Fertilized egg cells trigger and monitor loss of sperm’s epigenetic memory
02.12.2016 | IMBA - Institut für Molekulare Biotechnologie der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften GmbH

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>