Yang Hu, Postdoctoral Faculty Sponsor
Cellular reprogramming leading to induction of Muller glia-derived progenitor cells (MGPCs) with stem cell characteristics is essential for zebrafish retina regeneration. Although several regeneration-specific genes are characterized, the significance of MGPC-associated Mycb induction remains unknown. Here, we show that early expression of Mycb induces expression of genes like ascl1a, a known activator of lin28a in MGPCs. Notably, mycb is simultaneously activated by Ascl1a and repressed by Insm1a in regenerating retina. Here, we unravel a dual role of Mycb in lin28a expression, both as an activator through Ascl1a in MGPCs and a repressor in combination with Hdac1 in neighboring cells. Myc inhibition reduces the number of MGPCs and abolishes normal regeneration. Myc in collaboration with Hdac1 inhibits her4.1, an effector of Delta-Notch signaling. Further, we also show the repressive role of Delta-Notch signaling on lin28a expression in post-injured retina. Our studies reveal mechanistic understanding of Myc pathway during zebrafish retina regeneration, which could pave way for therapeutic intervention during mammalian retina regeneration.
View details for DOI 10.1083/jcb.201802113
View details for Web of Science ID 000457589200015
View details for PubMedID 30606747
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6363449
Permanent loss of vital functions after central nervous system (CNS) injury occurs in part because axons in the adult mammalian CNS do not regenerate after injury. PTEN was identified as a prominent intrinsic inhibitor of CNS axon regeneration about 10 years ago. The PTEN negatively regulated PI3K-AKT-mTOR pathway, which has been intensively explored in diverse models of axon injury and diseases and its mechanism for axon regeneration is becoming clearer.It is timely to summarize current knowledge about the PTEN/AKT/mTOR pathway and discuss future directions of translational regenerative research for neural injury and neurodegenerative diseases.Using mouse optic nerve crush as an in vivo retinal ganglion cell axon injury model, we have conducted an extensive molecular dissection of the PI3K-AKT-mTORC1/mTORC2 pathway to illuminate the cross-regulating mechanisms in axon regeneration.AKT is the nodal point that coordinates both positive (PI3K-PDK1-pAKT-T308) and negative (PI3K-mTORC2-pAKT-S473) signals to regulate adult CNS axon regeneration through two parallel pathways, activating mTORC1 and inhibiting GSK3?. However, mTORC1/S6K1-mediated feedback inhibition after PTEN deletion prevents potent AKT activation.A key permissive signal from an unidentified AKT-independent pathway is required for stimulating the neuron-intrinsic growth machinery. Future studies into this complex neuron-intrinsic balancing mechanism involving necessary and permissive signals for axon regeneration is likely to lead to safe and effective regenerative strategies for CNS repair.
View details for DOI 10.3233/RNN-190949
View details for PubMedID 31839616
Histone deacetylases (Hdacs) play significant roles in cellular homeostasis and tissue differentiation. Hdacs are well characterized in various systems for their physiological and epigenetic relevance. However, their significance during retina regeneration remains unclear. Here we show that inhibition of Hdac1 causes a decline in regenerative ability, and injury-dependent regulation of hdacs is essential for regulating regeneration-associated genes like ascl1a, lin28a, and repressors like her4.1 at the injury site. We show selective seclusion of Hdac1 from the proliferating Müller glia-derived progenitor cells (MGPCs) and its upregulation in the neighboring cells. Hdacs negatively regulate her4.1, which also represses lin28a and essential cytokines to control MGPCs proliferation. Interestingly, Hdacs' inhibition reversibly blocks regeneration through the repression of critical cytokines and other regeneration-specific genes, which is also revealed by whole-retina RNA sequence analysis. Our study shows mechanistic understanding of the Hdac pathway during zebrafish retina regeneration.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.isci.2018.08.008
View details for Web of Science ID 000449735000006
View details for PubMedID 30267687
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6135741
Upon injury, Müller glia cells of the zebrafish retina reprogram themselves to progenitor cells with stem cell characteristics. This necessity for retina regeneration is often compromised in mammals. We explored the significance of developmentally inevitable Sonic hedgehog signaling and found its necessity in MG reprogramming during retina regeneration. We report on stringent translational regulation of sonic hedgehog, smoothened, and patched1 by let-7 microRNA, which is regulated by Lin28a, in Müller glia (MG)-derived progenitor cells (MGPCs). We also show Shh-signaling-mediated induction of Ascl1 in mouse and zebrafish retina. Moreover, Shh-signaling-dependent regulation of matrix metalloproteinase9, in turn, regulates Shha levels and genes essential for retina regeneration, such as lin28a, zic2b, and foxn4. These observations were further confirmed through whole-retina RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis. This mechanistic gene expression network could lead to a better understanding of retina regeneration and, consequently, aid in designing strategies for therapeutic intervention in human retinal diseases.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.04.002
View details for Web of Science ID 000432454500014
View details for PubMedID 29719254
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5946716