Proteome science

Members of the high mobility group B protein family are dynamically expressed in embryonic neural stem cells.

PMID 23621913


Neural Stem Cells (NSCs) are a distinct group of cells present in the embryonic and adult mammalian central nervous system (CNS) that are able to differentiate into neurons, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. As NSC proliferation declines with age, factors that regulate this process need to be defined. To search for NSC regulatory factors, we performed a quantitative shotgun proteomics study that revealed that members of the High Mobility Group B (HMGB) family are highly expressed in NSCs. Using a neurosphere assay, we report the differential expression of HMGB 1, 2, 3, and 4 mRNAs in proliferating NSCs isolated from various time points during embryonic development, as well as the dynamic expression of HMGB1 and B2 mRNAs and proteins in differentiating embryonic NSCs. Expression of HMGB2 underwent the most dramatic changes during the developmental ages examined; as a result, we assessed its role in NSC proliferation and differentiation. We report the predominance of small diameter HMGB2-/- neurospheres in comparison to wild-type, which correlated with increased proliferation in these smaller HMGB2-/- neurospheres. Our data suggest that HMGB2 plays a regulatory role in NSC cell proliferation and maintenance pathways.