Rescue of an in vitro neuron phenotype identified in niemann-pick disease, type C1 induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons by modulating the wnt pathway and calcium signaling

Anastasia G. Efthymiou, Joe Steiner, William J. Pavan, Stephen Wincovitch, Denise M. Larson, Forbes D. Porter, Mahendra S. Rao, Nasir Malik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Niemann-Pick disease, type C1 (NPC1) is a familial disorder that has devastating consequences on postnatal development with multisystem effects, including neurodegeneration. There is no Food and Drug Administration-approved treatment option for NPC1; however, several potentially therapeutic compounds have been identified in assays using yeast, rodent models, and NPC1 human fibroblasts. Although these discoveries were made in fibroblasts from NPC1 subjects and were in some instances validated in animal models of the disease, testing these drugs on a cell type more relevant for NPC1 neurological disease would greatly facilitate both study of the disease and identification of more relevant therapeutic compounds. Toward this goal, we have generated an induced pluripotent stem cell line from a subject homozygous for the most frequent NPC1 mutation (p.I1061T) and subsequently created a stable line of neural stem cells (NSCs). These NSCs were then used to create neurons as an appropriate disease model. NPC1 neurons display a premature cell death phenotype, and gene expression analysis of these cells suggests dysfunction of important signaling pathways, including calcium and WNT. The clear readout from these cells makes them ideal candidates for high-throughput screening and will be a valuable tool to better understand the development of NPC1 in neural cells, as well as to develop better therapeutic options for NPC1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)230-238
Number of pages9
JournalStem Cells Translational Medicine
Volume4
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Calcium signaling
  • Disease modeling
  • Neural stem cells
  • Niemann-pick disease
  • Type C1
  • WNT signaling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology

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