Fricker, RA, Ormerod, RM and Bhangal, M (2013) Calcitriol imparts neuroprotection to midbrain dopaminergic neurons through up-regulation of GDNF. PLoS One, 8 (4). e62040-?. ISSN 1932-6203

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During development a tightly controlled signaling cascade dictates the differentiation, maturation and survival of developing neurons. Understanding this signaling mechanism is important for developing therapies for neurodegenerative illnesses. In previous work we have sought to understand the complex signaling pathways responsible for the development of midbrain dopamine neurons using a proteomic approach. One protein we have identified as being expressed in developing midbrain tissue is the vitamin D receptor. Therefore we investigated the effect of the biologically active vitamin D3 metabolite, calcitriol, on primary fetal ventral mesencephalic cultures of dopamine neurons. We observed a dose responsive increase in numbers of rat primary dopamine neurons when calcitriol was added to culture media. Western blot data showed that calcitriol upregulated the expression of glial derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF). Blocking GDNF signaling could prevent calcitriol’s ability to increase numbers of dopamine neurons. An apoptosis assay and cell birth dating experiment revealed that calcitriol increases the number of dopamine neurons through neuroprotection and not increased differentiation. This could have implications for future neuroprotective PD therapies.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Neurons, Calcitriol, Dopamine, Midbrain, Neuronal differentiation, Vitamin D, Vitamins, Apoptosis
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Institute for Science and Technology in Medicine
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2015 15:14
Last Modified: 24 May 2019 15:12

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