Human Umbilical Cord Mesenchymal Stem Cells Protect Against SCA3 by Modulating the Level of 70 kD Heat Shock Protein
Spinocerebellar ataxia 3 (SCA3), which is a progressive neurodegenerative disease, is currently incurable. Emerging studies have reported that human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (HUC-MSCs) transplantation could be a promising therapeutic strategy for cerebellar ataxias. However, few studies have evaluated the effects of HUC-MSCs on SCA3 transgenic mouse. Thus, we investigated the effects of HUC-MSCs on SCA3 mice and the underlying mechanisms in this study. SCA3 transgenic mice received systematic administration of 2 × 106 HUC-MSCs once per week for 12 continuous weeks. Motor coordination was measured blindly by open field tests and footprint tests. Immunohistochemistry and Nissl staining were applied to detect neuropathological alternations. Neurotrophic factors in the cerebellum were assessed by ELISA. We used western blotting to detect the alternations of heat shock protein 70 (HSP70), IGF-1, mutant ataxin-3, and apoptosis-associated proteins. Tunel staining was also used to detect apoptosis of affected cells. The distribution and differentiation of HUC-MSCs were determined by immunofluorescence. Our results exhibited that HUC-MSCs transplantation significantly alleviated motor impairments, corresponding to a reduction of cerebellar atrophy, preservation of neurons, decreased expression of mutant ataxin-3, and increased expression of HSP70. Implanted HUC-MSCs were mainly distributed in the cerebellum and pons with no obvious differentiation, and the expressions of IGF-1, VEGF, and NGF in the cerebellum were significantly elevated. Furthermore, with the use of HSP70 analogy quercetin injection, it demonstrated that HSP70 is involved in mutant ataxin-3 reduction. These results showed that HUC-MSCs implantation is a potential treatment for SCA3, likely through upregulating the IGF-1/HSP70 pathway and subsequently inhibiting mutant ataxin-3 toxicity.
KeywordsAtaxia Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells HSP70 Neurotrophins Purkinje cells Spinocerebellar ataxia 3
Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium
Human leukocyte antigen
Heat protein 70
Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells
Internal granular layer
Mesenchymal stem cells
Purkinje cell layer
Spinocerebellar ataxia 3
We express our sincere appreciation to the patients who provided umbilical cord in the research. We thank the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Drum Tower Hospital of Nanjing University Medical School for material support.
This work was funded by the National Nature Science Foundation of China (81200876, 81230026, 81300988 and 81501028) and the Science Foundation from Jiangsu Provincial Commission of Health and Family Planning (H201538).
TL designed experiments, contributed ideas, and revised manuscript. YL, LY, and JL contributed to the experiments performance and the collection/assembly of data. MZ, YX, JJ, and ZL contributed to data analysis, results interpretation, and manuscript editing. ZL conceived the experiments, developed the project, contributed ideas, and wrote the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
The consent is obtained from the all the participants.
Statement of Human Rights
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.” Human tissues were obtained under approval of the Ethical Committee of Health Sciences Faculty of the Nanjing University (China) (Project Number 2013-081-01).
Statement on the Welfare of Animals
All procedures performed in studies involving animals were in accordance with the ethical standards of the National Regulations of Experimental Animal Administration and the Committee of Experimental Animal Administration of Nanjing University.
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