Inducing functional radial glia-like progenitors from cortical astrocyte cultures using micropatterned PMMA

Marta Mattotti, Zaida Alvarez Pinto, Juan A. Ortega, Josep A. Planell, Elisabeth Engel, Soledad Alcántara*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations

Abstract

Radial glia cells (RGC) are multipotent progenitors that generate neurons and glia during CNS development, and which also served as substrate for neuronal migration. After a lesion, reactive glia are the main contributor to CNS regenerative blockage, although some reactive astrocytes are also able to de-differentiate in situ into radial glia-like cells (RGLC), providing beneficial effects in terms of CNS recovery. Thus, the identification of substrate properties that potentiate the ability of astrocytes to transform into RGLC in response to a lesion might help in the development of implantable devices that improve endogenous CNS regeneration. Here we demonstrate that functional RGLC can be induced from in vitro matured astrocytes by using a precisely-sized micropatterned PMMA grooved scaffold, without added soluble or substrate adsorbed biochemical factors. RGLC were extremely organized and aligned on 2 μm line patterned PMMA and, like their embryonic counterparts, express nestin, the neuron-glial progenitor marker Pax6, and also proliferate, generate different intermediate progenitors and support and direct axonal growth and neuronal migration. Our results suggest that the introduction of line patterns in the size range of the RGC processes in implantable scaffolds might mimic the topography of the embryonic neural stem cell niche, driving endogenous astrocytes into an RGLC phenotype, and thus favoring the regenerative response in situ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1759-1770
Number of pages12
JournalBiomaterials
Volume33
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2012

Keywords

  • Astrocyte
  • Co-culture
  • Micropatterning
  • Nerve guide
  • Polymethylmethacrylate
  • Surface topography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Bioengineering
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials

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