Novel MicroTubule-Associated Protein-2 Expressed In Oligodendrocytes In Multiple Sclerosis Lesions

Shafit-Zagardo B, Kress Y, Zhao ML, Lee SC
J NeuroChem 1999 Dec; 73 (6): 2531-7
Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Dept of Pathology, Bronx, New York 10461, USA
PMID# 10582615

Elucidation of the mechanisms involved in the regeneration of Oligodendrocytes and ReMyelination is a central issue in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) research.

We recently identified a novel alternatively spliced, developmentally regulated Oligodendrocyte-specific protein designated MicroTubule-Associated Protein-2+13 [MicroTubule-Associated Protein-2 expressing exon 13 (MAP-2+13)].

MAP-2+13 is expressed in human fetal Oligodendrocytes during process extension and Myelination but is minimally expressed in normal mature CNS.

To test the hypothesis that MAP-2+13 is re-expressed in regenerating Oligodendrocytes in MS Lesions, we examined the Brains of MS patients for the expression of this protein.

By ImmunoCytoChemistry using a series of MonoClonal AntiBodies specific for MAP-2+13, we determined that MAP-2+13 expression was up-regulated in all 31 lesions from 10 different MS Brains.

MAP-2+13 was expressed in regenerating Oligodendrocytes associated with DeMyelinated lesions, with the highest counts found in regions of extensive ReMyelination.

By electron microscopy, MAP-2+13 was localized to Oligodendrocytes engaged in ReMyelination, evident by their Process extension and association with Thinly Myelinated (ReMyelinated) and DeMyelinated Axons.

These results suggest a hitherto unsuspected role for this MicroTubule-Associated Protein in Oligodendrocyte function during development and Myelin repair.

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