Human vestibular sensory epithelia in explant culture were incubated in gentamicin to ablate hair cells. Subsequent transduction of supporting cells with ATOH1 using an Ad-2 viral vector resulted in generation of highly significant numbers of cells expressing the hair cell marker protein myosin VIIa. Cells expressing myosin VIIa were also generated after blocking the Notch signalling pathway with TAPI-1 but less efficiently. Transcriptomic analysis following ATOH1 transduction confirmed up-regulation of 335 putative hair cell marker genes, including several downstream targets of ATOH1. Morphological analysis revealed numerous cells bearing dense clusters of microvilli at the apical surfaces which showed some hair cell-like characteristics confirming a degree of conversion of supporting cells. However, no cells bore organised hair bundles and several expected hair cell markers genes were not expressed suggesting incomplete differentiation. Nevertheless, the results show a potential to induce conversion of supporting cells in the vestibular sensory tissues of humans.
All sequencing data from all of these samples have been deposited in NCBI GEO (accession number: GSE109320)
Regenerating hair cells in human vestibular sensory epitheliaPublicly available at the NCBI Gene Expression Omnibus (accession no. GSE109320).
- Ruth Rebecca Taylor
- Andrew Forge
- Andrew Forge
- Andrew Forge
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Human subjects: Ethical approval from NHS Health Research Authority, NRES Committee London -Surrey Borders. REC reference 11/LO/0475; IRAS project ID 73422. Tissue was collected anonymously with informed consent of the patient for tissue harvesting and publication of the results of the study.
- Tanya T. Whitfield, University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
© 2018, Taylor et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
De novo mutations in voltage- and ligand-gated channels have been associated with an increasing number of cases of developmental and epileptic encephalopathies, which often fail to respond to classic antiseizure medications. Here, we examine two knock-in mouse models replicating de novo sequence variations in the HCN1 voltage-gated channel gene, p.G391D and p.M153I (Hcn1G380D/+ and Hcn1M142I/+ in mouse), associated with severe drug-resistant neonatal- and childhood-onset epilepsy, respectively. Heterozygous mice from both lines displayed spontaneous generalized tonic-clonic seizures. Animals replicating the p.G391D variant had an overall more severe phenotype, with pronounced alterations in the levels and distribution of HCN1 protein, including disrupted targeting to the axon terminals of basket cell interneurons. In line with clinical reports from patients with pathogenic HCN1 sequence variations, administration of the antiepileptic Na+ channel antagonists lamotrigine and phenytoin resulted in the paradoxical induction of seizures in both mouse lines, consistent with an effect to further impair inhibitory neuron function. We also show that these variants can render HCN1 channels unresponsive to classic antagonists, indicating the need to screen mutated channels to identify novel compounds with diverse mechanism of action. Our results underscore the necessity of tailoring effective therapies for specific channel gene variants, and how strongly validated animal models may provide an invaluable tool towards reaching this objective.
Sleep and plasticity are highly interrelated, as sleep slow oscillations and sleep spindles are associated with consolidation of Hebbian-based processes. However, in adult humans, visual cortical plasticity is mainly sustained by homeostatic mechanisms, for which the role of sleep is still largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that non-REM sleep stabilizes homeostatic plasticity of ocular dominance induced in adult humans by short-term monocular deprivation: the counter-intuitive and otherwise transient boost of the deprived eye was preserved at the morning awakening (>6 hours after deprivation). Subjects exhibiting a stronger boost of the deprived eye after sleep had increased sleep spindle density in frontopolar electrodes, suggesting the involvement of distributed processes. Crucially, the individual susceptibility to visual homeostatic plasticity soon after deprivation correlated with the changes in sleep slow oscillations and spindle power in occipital sites, consistent with a modulation in early occipital visual cortex.