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    Home > Biochemistry News > Biotechnology News > eLife: Immune cells use the surface of blood vessels as a pathway, waiting for neurons to begin to form

    eLife: Immune cells use the surface of blood vessels as a pathway, waiting for neurons to begin to form

    • Last Update: 2021-12-29
    • Source: Internet
    • Author: User
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    Image: Image of the zebrafish's retina from 30 to 48 hours after fertilization
    .
    The microglial precursors are labeled with purple fluorescence, while the retina of the developing zebrafish is green

    .
    The upper right image shows that around 30 hpf, the first microglial precursor enters the eye through a blood vessel

    .
    The image at the bottom right shows that between 42-48 hpf, microglial precursors colonize the rest of the retina through the area of ​​neurogenesis

    .

    • Microglia are immune cells in the brain and are the first line of defense against neuroreproductive diseases and traumatic brain injury
      .

    • However, the question of how the precursors of microglia reach different areas of the brain during development remains unanswered
      .

    • Now, researchers track these precursors within 24 to 60 hours of fertilization of zebrafish embryos to discover how they enter the developing retina
      .

    • They found that the precursor uses the surface of the blood vessel as a pathway to find the entrance to the retina, and waits for neurons to begin to form, and then completely settle on the retina
      .

    • In the future, this knowledge may lead to targeting microglia to treat neurodegenerative diseases
      .

    main content

    Microglia are immune cells in the brain and are the first line of defense against neurodegenerative diseases and traumatic brain injury
    .
    They gather on damaged areas like miniature vacuum cleaners to remove dead, infected or injured brain cells and clean up unnecessary synapses to maintain the homeostasis of the brain, which is a stable state necessary for survival

    .
    However, microglia do not originate in the brain, but their precursor forms travel to the brain from their origin (another part of the embryo, called the peripheral mesoderm) during development

    .
    Many questions surrounding this process, such as how microglial precursors find their way, have not yet been answered

    .
    Moreover, considering that these cells are very important for brain homeostasis in all animals, including humans, answering these questions may have countless health benefits

    .

    "Microglia are associated with several neurobiological diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease
    .
    Revealing how they work can provide clues to these diseases," said the Department of Developmental Neurobiology, Okinawa Graduate School of Science and Technology (OIST) The person in charge, Professor Ichiro Masai, said

    .
    "Microglia can be seen everywhere in the brain, but our recent paper studied how they colonize the retina (the nerve tissue of the eye), which is one of the first brain regions to house these cells

    .
    "

    Professor Masai and former OIST doctoral student Dr.
    Nishtha Ranawat reported in "eLife" that to successfully grow on the retina, microglia need two processes-blood vessels must be formed in the eye, and neurogenesis, that is, neurons.
    The formation process must begin in the retina

    .

    To reveal these requirements, the researchers performed transparent imaging of zebrafish embryos 24 hours to 60 hours after fertilization
    .
    They fluorescently label the microglia precursors so that they can be tracked

    .
    From their original location, these precursors first move to the egg yolk and begin to migrate from there to various areas of the brain

    .

    "The developing brain is a very dense tissue," Professor Masai explained
    .
    "It's hard to imagine how microglia get into it and move inside

    .
    But we found that they use blood vessels as a way to enter the eye

    .
    "

    However, the journey did not end there
    .
    Once the microglia reach the entrance of the retina, they stay in contact with the blood vessels between the retina and the lens until another process begins-neurogenesis

    .
    Neurogenesis is the process of neuron formation

    .
    Researchers found that microglia can only penetrate into the area of ​​the retina where neurogenesis occurs

    .
    About 60 hours after fertilization, microglia are in place and spread throughout the retina

    .

    To further determine that blood vessels and neurogenesis are important components of microglia migration, the researchers prevented blood vessel formation in one experiment and neurogenesis in another experiment
    .
    In both cases, microglia cannot enter the retina

    .

    Dr.
    Ranawat is the lead author of this study and is now a postdoctoral scholar at the Burke Institute of Neurology.
    He said: “This study highlights the dependence of microglia on the developing retinal blood vessels and their dependence on neurons.
    Differentiation preferences

    .
    " "In the future, this knowledge may lead to targeting microglia stem cells to treat neurodegenerative diseases

    .
    The next step is to find the molecules that determine the interactions between microglia and blood vessels and neurons

    .
    "

    Article title

    Mechanisms underlying microglial colonization of developing neural retina in zebrafish



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