Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Cerebrospinal fluid signals control the behavior of stem cells in the brain

22.07.2016

Prof. Fiona Doetsch’s research team at the Biozentrum, University of Basel, has discovered that the choroid plexus, a largely ignored structure in the brain that produces the cerebrospinal fluid, is an important regulator of adult neural stem cells. The study recently published in “Cell Stem Cell” also shows that signals secreted by the choroid plexus dynamically change during aging which affects aged stem cell behavior.

Stem cells are non-specialized cells found in different organs. They have the capacity to generate specialized cells in the body. In the adult brain, neural stem cells give rise to neurons throughout life. The stem cells reside in unique micro-environments, so-called niches which provide key signals that regulate stem cell self-renewal and differentiation.


When stem cells from the old brain are cultured with signals of a young choroid plexus they can divide and form new neurons (red).

Biozentrum, University of Basel

Stem cells in the adult brain contact the ventricles, cavities filled with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) that bathes and protects the brain. The CSF is produced by the choroid plexus. The research team led by Prof. Fiona Doetsch at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel has now shown that the choroid plexus is a key component of the stem cell niche, whose properties change throughout life and affect stem cell behavior.

Choroid plexus signals regulate stem cells

Fiona Doetsch’s group uncovered that the choroid plexus secretes a wide variety of important signaling factors in the CSF, which are important for stem cell regulation throughout life. During aging, the levels of stem cell division and formation of new neurons decrease.

The research team showed that although stem cells are still present in the aged brain, and have the capacity to divide, they do so less. “One reason is that signals in the old choroid plexus are different. As a consequence stem cells receive different messages and are less capable to form new neurons during aging. In other words, compromising the fitness of stem cells in this brain region”, explains Violeta Silva Vargas, the first author of the study.

“But what is really amazing is that when you cultivate old stem cells with signals from young fluid, they can still be stimulated to divide – behaving like the young stem cells”.

A new path to understand brain function in health and disease

In the future, the research team plans to investigate the composition of the signaling factors secreted by the choroid plexus, as well as how these change in different states and affect neural stem cells. This could provide new paths for altering brain function in health and disease. “We can imagine the choroid plexus as a watering can that provides signals to the stem cells. Our investigations also open a new route for understanding how different physiological states of the body influence stem cells in the brain during health and disease, and opens new ways for thinking about therapy”, says Fiona Doetsch.

Original article:
Violeta Silva-Vargas, Angel R. Maldonado-Soto, Dogukan Mizrak, Paolo Codega, Fiona Doetsch: Age-Dependent Niche Signals from the Choroid Plexus Regulate Adult Neural Stem Cells. Cell Stem Cell, published online 21 July 2016.

Further Information:
Heike Sacher, University of Basel, Biozentrum, Communications, Tel. +41 61 267 14 49, email: heike.sacher@unibas.ch

Heike Sacher | Universität Basel
Further information:
http://www.unibas.ch

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Magic number colloidal clusters
13.12.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

nachricht Record levels of mercury released by thawing permafrost in Canadian Arctic
13.12.2018 | University of Alberta

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Magic number colloidal clusters

13.12.2018 | Life Sciences

UNLV study unlocks clues to how planets form

13.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Live from the ocean research vessel Atlantis

13.12.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>