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Journal Article

Dying transplanted neural stem cells mediate survival bystander effects in the injured brain.


Kahnt,  Jörg
Core Facility Mass Spectrometry and Proteomics, Max Planck Institute for Terrestrial Microbiology, Max Planck Society;

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Han, W., Meißner, E.-M., Neunteibl, S., Gunther, M., Kahnt, J., Dolga, A., et al. (2023). Dying transplanted neural stem cells mediate survival bystander effects in the injured brain. Cell death & disease, 14(3): 173. doi:10.1038/s41419-023-05698-z.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-000C-B63D-3
Neural stem and progenitor cell (NSPC) transplants provide neuroprotection in models of acute brain injury, but the underlying mechanisms are not fully understood. Here, we provide evidence that caspase-dependent apoptotic cell death of NSPCs is required for sending survival signals to the injured brain. The secretome of dying NSPCs contains heat-stable proteins, which protect neurons against glutamate-induced toxicity and trophic factor withdrawal in vitro, and from ischemic brain damage in vivo. Our findings support a new concept suggesting a bystander effect of apoptotic NSPCs, which actively promote neuronal survival through the release of a protective "farewell" secretome. Similar protective effects by the secretome of apoptotic NSPC were also confirmed in human neural progenitor cells and neural stem cells but not in mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEF) or human dopaminergic neurons, suggesting that the observed effects are cell type specific and exist for neural progenitor/stem cells across species. © 2023. The Author(s).