Document Detail

Antidepressant imipramine induces human astrocytes to differentiate into cells with neuronal phenotype.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20356437     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Several recent studies have expanded our conception of the role of astrocytes in neurogenesis, proposing that these cells may contribute to this phenomenon not only as a source of trophic substances, but also as stem cells themselves. We recently observed in vitro that human mature astrocytes can be induced to differentiate into cells with a neuronal phenotype. Antidepressant drugs have been shown to increase neurogenesis in the adult rodent hippocampus. In order to better understand the role of astroglia in antidepressant-induced neurogenesis, primary astrocyte cultures were treated with the antidepressant imipramine. Cell morphology was rapidly modified by treatment. In fact, whereas untreated astrocytes showed large, flat morphology, after a few hours of treatment cells exhibited a round-shaped cell body with long, thin processes. The expression of neuronal markers was analysed by immunocytochemistry, Western Blot and RT-PCR at different treatment times. Results showed an increase in neuronal markers such as neurofilament and neuron-specific enolase (NSE), whereas glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and nestin expression were not significantly modified by treatment. Similar results were obtained with fluoxetine and venlafaxine. Hes1 mRNA significantly increased after 2 h of treatment, suggesting involvement of this transcription factor in this process. These results confirm the role of astrocytes in neurogenesis and suggest that these cells may represent one of the targets of antidepressants.
Stefano Cabras; Francesca Saba; Camilla Reali; Maria Laura Scorciapino; Annarita Sirigu; Giuseppe Talani; Giovanni Biggio; Valeria Sogos
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article     Date:  2010-03-31
Journal Detail:
Title:  The international journal of neuropsychopharmacology / official scientific journal of the Collegium Internationale Neuropsychopharmacologicum (CINP)     Volume:  13     ISSN:  1469-5111     ISO Abbreviation:  Int. J. Neuropsychopharmacol.     Publication Date:  2010 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-05-18     Completed Date:  2011-01-25     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9815893     Medline TA:  Int J Neuropsychopharmacol     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  603-15     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Cytomorphology, University of Cagliari, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Antidepressive Agents, Tricyclic / pharmacology*
Astrocytes / chemistry,  cytology*,  drug effects
Cell Differentiation / drug effects*,  physiology
Cells, Cultured
Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein / analysis
Imipramine / pharmacology*
Neurogenesis / drug effects,  physiology
Neurons / chemistry,  cytology*,  drug effects
Stem Cells / chemistry,  cytology,  drug effects
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antidepressive Agents, Tricyclic; 0/Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein; 50-49-7/Imipramine

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