Astrocytes Regulate the Development and Maturation of Retinal Ganglion Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

Kirstin B. VanderWall, Ridhima Vij, Sarah K. Ohlemacher, Akshayalakshmi Sridhar, Clarisse M. Fligor, Elyse M. Feder, Michael C. Edler, Anthony J. Baucum, Theodore R. Cummins, Jason S. Meyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) form the connection between the eye and the brain, with this connectivity disrupted in numerous blinding disorders. Previous studies have demonstrated the ability to derive RGCs from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs); however, these cells exhibited some characteristics that indicated a limited state of maturation. Among the many factors known to influence RGC development in the retina, astrocytes are known to play a significant role in their functional maturation. Thus, efforts of the current study examined the functional maturation of hPSC-derived RGCs, including the ability of astrocytes to modulate this developmental timeline. Morphological and functional properties of RGCs were found to increase over time, with astrocytes significantly accelerating the functional maturation of hPSC-derived RGCs. The results of this study clearly demonstrate the functional and morphological maturation of RGCs in vitro, including the effects of astrocytes on the maturation of hPSC-derived RGCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-212
Number of pages12
JournalStem Cell Reports
Volume12
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 12 2019

Keywords

  • astrocyte
  • development
  • differentiation
  • pluripotent stem cell
  • retina
  • retinal ganglion cell
  • stem cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology

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    VanderWall, K. B., Vij, R., Ohlemacher, S. K., Sridhar, A., Fligor, C. M., Feder, E. M., Edler, M. C., Baucum, A. J., Cummins, T. R., & Meyer, J. S. (2019). Astrocytes Regulate the Development and Maturation of Retinal Ganglion Cells Derived from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells. Stem Cell Reports, 12(2), 201-212. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stemcr.2018.12.010