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Functional in vitro models composed of human cells will constitute an important platform in the next generation of system biology and drug discovery. This study reports a novel human-based in vitro Neuromuscular Junction (NMJ) system developed in a defined serum-free medium and on a patternable non-biological surface. The motoneurons and skeletal muscles(More)
Neuromuscular junction (NMJ) formation, occurring between motoneurons and skeletal muscle, is a complex multistep process involving a variety of signaling molecules and pathways. In vitro motoneuron-muscle co-cultures are powerful tools to study the role of different growth factors, hormones and cellular structures involved in NMJ formation. In this study,(More)
A very small population of choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) immunoreactive cells is observed in all layers of the adult hippocampus. This is the intrinsic source of the hippocampal cholinergic innervation, in addition to the well-established septo-hippocampal cholinergic projection. This study aimed at quantifying and identifying the origin of this small(More)
To date, the coculture of motoneurons (MNs) and skeletal muscle in a defined in vitro system has only been described in one study and that was between rat MNs and rat skeletal muscle. No in vitro studies have demonstrated human MN to rat muscle synapse formation, although numerous studies have attempted to implant human stem cells into rat models to(More)
The sensory circuit of the stretch reflex arc, composed of specialized intrafusal muscle fibers and type Ia proprioceptive sensory neurons, converts mechanical information regarding muscle length and stretch to electrical action potentials and relays them to the central nervous system. Utilizing a non-biological substrate, surface patterning(More)
Stem cells from umbilical cord would be a favorable alternative to embryonic stem cells for therapeutic applications. In this study, human multipotent progenitor cells (MLPCs) from umbilical cord were differentiated into oligodendrocytes by exposure to a range of microenvironmental chemical and physical cues. Chemical cues were represented by a novel(More)
The sensory circuit of the stretch reflex arc is composed of intrafusal muscle fibers and their innervating proprioceptive neurons that convert mechanical information regarding muscle length and tension into action potentials that synapse onto the homonymous motoneurons in the ventral spinal cord which innervate the extrafusal fibers of the same muscle. To(More)
A multiorgan, functional, human in vitro assay system or 'Body-on-a-Chip' would be of tremendous benefit to the drug discovery and toxicology industries, as well as providing a more biologically accurate model for the study of disease as well as applied and basic biological research. Here, we describe the advances our team has made towards this goal, as(More)
Mechanisms that control the differentiation and function of oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system are complex and involve multiple inputs from the surrounding environment, including localized concentrations of growth factors and the extracellular matrix. Dissection and analysis of these inputs are key to understanding the pathology of central(More)
One of the most significant interactions between Schwann cells and neurons is myelin sheath formation. Myelination is a vertebrate adaptation that enables rapid conduction of action potentials without a commensurate increase in axon diameter. In vitro neuronal systems provide a unique modality to study both factors influencing myelination and diseases(More)