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Study of the neuroprotector capacity of the epithelial cells of the choroid plexi as a potential regenerative therapy for Alzheimer's disease

16th national competition for scientific and technical research

Gene and regenerative therapy

Senior Researcher : Eva María Carro Díaz

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Research Centre or Institution : Instituto de Investigación Hospital 2 de Octubre. Madrid.


The search for alternative treatments which at least reduce the neurodegeneration characterising diseases such as Alzheimer's is an area of special scientific interest. The choroid plexi are involved in many of the basic aspects of neuronal functioning, including the secretion of a nutritious cocktail of polypeptides. They also play a role in repair processes following a lesion, such as occurs in ischaemia, or in Huntington's disease.

The aim of this study will be to determine the possible neuroprotective effects of the choroid plexus in Alzheimer's disease, by implanting epithelial cells from the choroid plexus in a murine model of Alzheimer's disease.

To this end the following aims are planned:

  • To determine the neuroprotective potential of the choroid plexus following implantation in the brain, in an animal model of amyloidosis.
  • To create a primary culture of human choroid plexus epithelial cells.

To date, work has been undertaken on the first objective. To this end, primary cultures of choroid plexus epithelial cells have been taken from C57BL6 strain rats 5 days after birth, according to the protocol described by Carro et al. (2002). After being kept in culture for one week, they are implanted in dual transgenic APP/Ps1 mice, which are transporters of mutations in the genes encoding for the amyloid precursor protein (APP) and preseniline 1 as the model for amyloidosis. For this, under anaesthesia with isoforane, and using stereotaxia, epithelial cells from the choroid plexus cultures are implanted bilaterally at the level of the hippocampus. Control animals are given the (saline) medium in which the cells had been re-suspended. Preliminary feasibility and cell implant survival tests are being conducted, with highly positive results one month after implantation.

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