Aptamer Antagonists of Myelin-Derived Inhibitors Promote Axon Growth
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Myelin of the adult central nervous system (CNS) is one of the major sources of inhibitors of axon regeneration following injury. The three known myelin-derived inhibitors (Nogo, MAG, and OMgp) bind with high affinity to the Nogo-66 receptor (NgR) on axons and limit neurite outgrowth. Here we show that RNA aptamers can be generated that bind with high affinity to NgR, compete with myelin-derived inhibitors for binding to NgR, and promote axon elongation of neurons in vitro even in the presence of these inhibitors. Aptamers may have key advantages over protein antagonists, including low immunogenicity and the possibility of ready modification during chemical synthesis for stability, signaling, or immobilization. This first demonstration that aptamers can directly influence neuronal function suggests that aptamers may prove useful for not only healing spinal cord and other neuronal damage, but may be more generally useful as neuromodulators.
CitationWang Y, Khaing ZZ, Li N, Hall B, Schmidt CE, et al. (2010) Aptamer Antagonists of Myelin-Derived Inhibitors Promote Axon Growth. PLoS ONE 5(3): e9726. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0009726
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