Image_4_Interleukin-17a Induces Neuronal Differentiation of Induced-Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neural Progenitors From Autistic and Control Subject.TIFF (1.73 MB)
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Image_4_Interleukin-17a Induces Neuronal Differentiation of Induced-Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Neural Progenitors From Autistic and Control Subjects.TIFF

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posted on 14.03.2022, 05:13 authored by Ana Karolyne Santos Gomes, Rafaelly Mayara Dantas, Bruno Yukio Yokota, André Luiz Teles e Silva, Karina Griesi-Oliveira, Maria Rita Passos-Bueno, Andréa Laurato Sertié

Prenatal exposure to maternal immune activation (MIA) has been suggested to increase the probability of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Recent evidence from animal studies indicates a key role for interleukin-17a (IL-17a) in promoting MIA-induced behavioral and brain abnormalities reminiscent of ASD. However, it is still unclear how IL-17a acts on the human developing brain and the cell types directly affected by IL-17a signaling. In this study, we used iPSC-derived neural progenitor cells (NPCs) from individuals with ASD of known and unknown genetic cause as well as from neurotypical controls to examine the effects of exogenous IL-17a on NPC proliferation, migration and neuronal differentiation, and whether IL-17a and genetic risk factors for ASD interact exacerbating alterations in NPC function. We observed that ASD and control NPCs endogenously express IL-17a receptor (IL17RA), and that IL-17a/IL17RA activation modulates downstream ERK1/2 and mTORC1 signaling pathways. Exogenous IL-17a did not induce abnormal proliferation and migration of ASD and control NPCs but, on the other hand, it significantly increased the expression of synaptic (Synaptophysin-1, Synapsin-1) and neuronal polarity (MAP2) proteins in these cells. Also, as we observed that ASD and control NPCs exhibited similar responses to exogenous IL-17a, it is possible that a more inflammatory environment containing other immune molecules besides IL-17a may be needed to trigger gene-environment interactions during neurodevelopment. In conclusion, our results suggest that exogenous IL-17a positively regulates the neuronal differentiation of human NPCs, which may disturb normal neuronal and synaptic development and contribute to MIA-related changes in brain function and behavior.

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