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In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (3)
Articles by Tarran J. Pierfelice in JoVE
Ultrasound-Guided Microinjection into the Mouse Forebrain In Utero at E9.5
Tarran J. Pierfelice1, Nicholas Gaiano1,2
1Institute for Cell Engineering Neuroregeneration and Stem Cell Programs, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 2Departments of Neurology, Neuroscience, and Oncology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
In utero survival surgery in mice permits the molecular manipulation of gene expression during development. Here we describe the use of high-frequency ultrasound imaging to guide the injection of retroviral vectors into the mouse brain at embryonic day (E) 9.5.
Other articles by Tarran J. Pierfelice on PubMed
The Exon Junction Complex Component Magoh Controls Brain Size by Regulating Neural Stem Cell Division
Nature Neuroscience. May, 2010 | Pubmed ID: 20364144
Brain structure and size require precise division of neural stem cells (NSCs), which self-renew and generate intermediate neural progenitors (INPs) and neurons. The factors that regulate NSCs remain poorly understood, and mechanistic explanations of how aberrant NSC division causes the reduced brain size seen in microcephaly are lacking. Here we show that Magoh, a component of the exon junction complex (EJC) that binds RNA, controls mouse cerebral cortical size by regulating NSC division. Magoh haploinsufficiency causes microcephaly because of INP depletion and neuronal apoptosis. Defective mitosis underlies these phenotypes, as depletion of EJC components disrupts mitotic spindle orientation and integrity, chromosome number and genomic stability. In utero rescue experiments showed that a key function of Magoh is to control levels of the microcephaly-associated protein Lis1 during neurogenesis. Our results uncover requirements for the EJC in brain development, NSC maintenance and mitosis, thereby implicating this complex in the pathogenesis of microcephaly.
Cancer Research. Feb, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21245095
Although Notch signaling has been widely implicated in neoplastic growth, direct evidence for in vivo initiation of neoplasia by the pathway in murine models has been limited to tumors of lymphoid, breast, and choroid plexus cells. To examine tumorigenic potential in the eye and brain, we injected retroviruses encoding activated forms of Notch1, Notch2, or Notch3 into embryonic mice. Interestingly, the majority of animals infected with active Notch3 developed proliferative lesions comprised of pigmented ocular choroid cells, retinal and optic nerve glia, and lens epithelium. Notch3-induced lesions in the choroid, retina, and optic nerve were capable of invading adjacent tissues, suggesting that they were malignant tumors. Although Notch3 activation induced choroidal tumors in up to 67% of eyes, Notch1 or Notch2 activation never resulted in such tumors. Active forms of Notch1 and Notch2 did generate a few small proliferative glial nodules in the retina and optic nerve, whereas Notch3 was 10-fold more efficient at generating growths, many of which were large invasive gliomas. Expression of active Notch1/Notch3 chimeric receptors implicated the RBPjk-association molecule and transactivation domains of Notch3 in generating choroidal and glial tumors, respectively. In contrast to our findings in the optic nerve and retina, introduction of active Notch receptors, including Notch3, into the brain never caused glial tumors. Our results highlight the differential ability of Notch receptor paralogs to initiate malignant tumor formation, and suggest that glial precursors of the optic nerve, but not the brain, are susceptible to transformation by Notch3.
Activity-induced Notch Signaling in Neurons Requires Arc/Arg3.1 and is Essential for Synaptic Plasticity in Hippocampal Networks
Neuron. Feb, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21315255
Notch signaling in the nervous system has been most studied in the context of cell fate specification. However, numerous studies have suggested that Notch also regulates neuronal morphology, synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. Here we show that Notch1 and its ligand Jagged1 are present at the synapse, and that Notch signaling in neurons occurs in response to synaptic activity. In addition, neuronal Notch signaling is positively regulated by Arc/Arg3.1, an activity-induced gene required for synaptic plasticity. In Arc/Arg3.1 mutant neurons, the proteolytic activation of Notch1 is disrupted both in vivo and in vitro. Conditional deletion of Notch1 in the postnatal hippocampus disrupted both long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), and led to deficits in learning and short-term memory. Thus, Notch signaling is dynamically regulated in response to neuronal activity, Arc/Arg3.1 is a context-dependent Notch regulator, and Notch1 is required for the synaptic plasticity that contributes to memory formation.