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Proinflammatory S100A9 Regulates Differentiation and Aggregation of Neural Stem Cells

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posted on 20.10.2020, 20:43 by Yin Tian, Rui Cao, Bingchen Che, Dan Sun, Yong Tang, Lin Jiang, Qiao Bai, Yonggang Liu, Ludmilla A. Morozova-Roche, Ce Zhang
Inflammation is the primary pathological feature of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease. Proinflammatory molecules (e.g., S100A9) play important roles during the progression of the diseases by regulating behavior and fate of multiple cell types in the nervous system. Our earlier studies reveal that S100A9 is toxic to neurons, and its interaction with Aβ peptides leads to the formation of large nontoxic amyloidogenic aggregates, suggesting a protective role of coaggregation with Aβ amyloids. We herein demonstrate that S100A9 interacts with neural stem cells (NSCs) and causes NSC differentiation. In the brain of transgenic AD mouse models, we found large quantities of proinflammatory S100A9, which colocalizes with the differentiated NSCs. NSC sphere formation, which is a representative character of NSC stemness, is also substantially inhibited by S100A9. These results suggest that S100A9 is a representative marker for the inflammatory conditions in AD, and it promotes NSC differentiation. Intriguingly, in contrast to the death of both stem and differentiated NSCs caused by high S100A9 doses, S100A9 at a moderate concentration is toxic only to the early differentiated NSCs but not the stem cells. We therefore postulate that, at the early stage of AD, the expression of S100A9 leads to NSC differentiation, which remedies the neuron damage. The application of drugs, which help maintain NSC stemness (e.g., the platelet-derived growth factor, PDGF), may help overcome the acute inflammatory conditions and improve the efficacy of NSC transplantation therapy.