One of the unmet clinical needs in demyelinating diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is to provide therapies that actively enhance the process of myelin regeneration (remyelination) in the central nervous system (CNS). Oligodendrocytes, the myelinating cells of the CNS, play a central role in remyelination and originate from oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs). We recently showed that depletion of regulatory T cells (Treg) impairs remyelination in vivo, and that Treg-secreted factors directly enhance oligodendrocyte differentiation. Here we aim to further characterize the dynamics of Treg-enhanced oligodendrocyte differentiation as well as elucidate the cellular components of a murine mixed neuron-glia model. Murine mixed neuron-glia cultures were generated from P2-7 C57BL/6 mice and characterized for percentage of neuronal and glial cell populations prior to treatment at 7 days in vitro (div) as well as after treatment with Treg-conditioned media at multiple timepoints up to 12 div. Mixed neuron-glia cultures consisted of approximately 30% oligodendroglial lineage cells, 20% neurons and 10% microglia. Furthermore, a full layer of astrocytes, that could not be quantified, was present. Treatment with Treg-conditioned media enhanced the proportion of MBP+ oligodendrocytes and decreased the proportion of PDGFRα+ OPCs, but did not affect OPC proliferation or survival. Treg-enhanced oligodendrocyte differentiation was not caused by Treg polarizing factors, was dependent on the number of activation cycles Treg underwent and was robustly achieved by using 5% conditioned media. These studies provide in-depth characterization of a murine mixed neuron-glia model as well as further insights into the dynamics of Treg-enhanced oligodendrocyte differentiation.
- Journal Article