Stanford Advisors

All Publications

  • Stress induces behavioral abnormalities by increasing expression of phagocytic receptor, MERTK, in astrocytes to promote synapse phagocytosis. Immunity Byun, Y. G., Kim, N. S., Kim, G., Jeon, Y. S., Choi, J. B., Park, C. W., Kim, K., Jang, H., Kim, J., Kim, E., Han, Y. M., Yoon, K. J., Lee, S. H., Chung, W. S. 2023


    Childhood neglect and/or abuse can induce mental health conditions with unknown mechanisms. Here, we identified stress hormones as strong inducers of astrocyte-mediated synapse phagocytosis. Using in vitro, in vivo, and human brain organoid experiments, we showed that stress hormones increased the expression of the Mertk phagocytic receptor in astrocytes through glucocorticoid receptor (GR). In post-natal mice, exposure to early social deprivation (ESD) specifically activated the GR-MERTK pathway in astrocytes, but not in microglia. The excitatory post-synaptic density in cortical regions was reduced in ESD mice, and there was an increase in the astrocytic engulfment of these synapses. The loss of excitatory synapses, abnormal neuronal network activities, and behavioral abnormalities in ESD mice were largely prevented by ablating GR or MERTK in astrocytes. Our work reveals the critical roles of astrocytic GR-MERTK activation in evoking stress-induced abnormal behaviors in mice, suggesting GR-MERTK signaling as a therapeutic target for stress-induced mental health conditions.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.immuni.2023.07.005

    View details for PubMedID 37527657

  • Fasudil alleviates the vascular endothelial dysfunction and several phenotypes of Fabry disease. Molecular therapy : the journal of the American Society of Gene Therapy Choi, J. B., Seol, D. W., Do, H. S., Yang, H. Y., Kim, T. M., Byun, Y. G., Park, J. M., Choi, J., Hong, S. P., Chung, W. S., Suh, J. M., Koh, G. Y., Lee, B. H., Wee, G., Han, Y. M. 2023


    Fabry disease (FD), a lysosomal storage disorder, is caused by defective α-galactosidase (GLA) activity, which results in the accumulation of globotriaosylceramide (Gb3) in endothelial cells and leads to life-threatening complications such as left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH), renal failure, and stroke. Enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) results in Gb3 clearance; however, because of a short half-life in the body and the high immunogenicity of FD patients, ERT has a limited therapeutic effect, particularly in patients with late-onset disease or progressive complications. Because vascular endothelial cells (VECs) derived from FD-induced pluripotent stem cells display increased thrombospondin-1 (TSP1) expression and enhanced SMAD2 signaling, we screened for chemical compounds that could downregulate TSP1 and SMAD2 signaling. Fasudil reduced the levels of p-SMAD2 and TSP1 in FD-VECs and increased the expression of angiogenic factors. Furthermore, fasudil downregulated the endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT) and mitochondrial function of FD-VECs. Oral administration of fasudil to FD mice alleviated several FD phenotypes, including LVH, renal fibrosis, anhidrosis, and heat insensitivity. Our findings demonstrate that fasudil is a novel candidate for FD therapy.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ymthe.2023.02.003

    View details for PubMedID 36755495

  • Generation of a CRISPR/Cas9-corrected-hiPSC line (DDLABi001-A) from Fabry disease (FD)-derived iPSCs having a-galactosidase (GLA) gene mutation (c.803_806del) STEM CELL RESEARCH Choi, J., Seo, D., Do, H., Han, Y. 2023; 66: 103001


    Fabry disease (FD) is a lysosomal storage disorder caused by mutations in GLA gene. Here, GLA mutation (1268fs*1 (c.803_806del)) of FD iPSCs was corrected using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system. The corrected (cor) FD-iPSCs retained normal morphology, karyotype, expression of pluripotency-associated markers, trilineage differentiation potential, and GLA activity. Thus, FD(cor)-iPSCs can be used as valuable tools to study the mechanism how GLA mutation1268fs*1 induces various pathophysiologic phenotypes in FD patients.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.scr.2022.103001

    View details for Web of Science ID 000931797800009

    View details for PubMedID 36516658

  • Aberrant Cortical Layer Development of Brain Organoids Derived from Noonan Syndrome-iPSCs INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MOLECULAR SCIENCES Kim, B., Koh, Y., Do, H., Ju, Y., Choi, J., Cho, G., Yoo, H., Lee, B., Han, J., Park, J., Han, Y. 2022; 23 (22)


    Noonan syndrome (NS) is a genetic disorder mainly caused by gain-of-function mutations in Src homology region 2-containing protein tyrosine phosphatase 2 (SHP2). Although diverse neurological manifestations are commonly diagnosed in NS patients, the mechanisms as to how SHP2 mutations induce the neurodevelopmental defects associated with NS remain elusive. Here, we report that cortical organoids (NS-COs) derived from NS-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) exhibit developmental abnormalities, especially in excitatory neurons (ENs). Although NS-COs develop normally in their appearance, single-cell transcriptomic analysis revealed an increase in the EN population and overexpression of cortical layer markers in NS-COs. Surprisingly, the EN subpopulation co-expressing the upper layer marker SATB2 and the deep layer maker CTIP2 was enriched in NS-COs during cortical development. In parallel with the developmental disruptions, NS-COs also exhibited reduced synaptic connectivity. Collectively, our findings suggest that perturbed cortical layer identity and impeded neuronal connectivity contribute to the neurological manifestations of NS.

    View details for DOI 10.3390/ijms232213861

    View details for Web of Science ID 000887579700001

    View details for PubMedID 36430334

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC9699065

  • Dysregulated ECM remodeling proteins lead to aberrant osteogenesis of Costello syndrome iPSCs STEM CELL REPORTS Choi, J., Lee, J., Kang, M., Kim, B., Ju, Y., Do, H., Yoo, H., Lee, B., Han, Y. 2021; 16 (8): 1985-1998


    Costello syndrome (CS) is an autosomal dominant disorder caused by mutations in HRAS. Although CS patients have skeletal abnormalities, the role of mutated HRAS in bone development remains unclear. Here, we use CS induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) undergoing osteogenic differentiation to investigate how dysregulation of extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling proteins contributes to impaired osteogenesis. Although CS patient-derived iPSCs develop normally to produce mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), the resulting CS MSCs show defective osteogenesis with reduced alkaline phosphatase activity and lower levels of bone mineralization. We found that hyperactivation of SMAD3 signaling during the osteogenic differentiation of CS MSCs leads to aberrant expression of ECM remodeling proteins such as MMP13, TIMP1, and TIMP2. CS MSCs undergoing osteogenic differentiation also show reduced β-catenin signaling. Knockdown of TIMPs permits normal differentiation of CS MSCs into osteoblasts and enhances β-catenin signaling in a RUNX2-independent manner. Thus, this study demonstrates that enhanced TIMP expression induced by hyperactivated SMAD3 signaling impairs the osteogenic development of CS MSCs via an inactivation of β-catenin signaling.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.stemcr.2021.06.007

    View details for Web of Science ID 000684300500012

    View details for PubMedID 34242618

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC8365028