Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Microglia-Like Cells Harboring TREM2 Missense Mutations Show Specific Deficits in Phagocytosis


Dysfunction of microglia, the brain's immune cells, is linked to neurodegeneration. Homozygous missense mutations in TREM2 cause Nasu-Hakola disease (NHD), an early-onset dementia. To study the consequences of these TREM2 variants, we generated induced pluripotent stem cell-derived microglia-like cells (iPSC-MGLCs) from patients with NHD caused by homozygous T66M or W50C missense mutations. iPSC-MGLCs expressed microglial markers and secreted higher levels of TREM2 than primary macrophages. TREM2 expression and secretion were reduced in variant lines. LPS-mediated cytokine secretion was comparable between control and TREM2 variant iPSC-MGLCs, whereas survival was markedly reduced in cells harboring missense mutations when compared with controls. Furthermore, TREM2 missense mutations caused a marked impairment in the phagocytosis of apoptotic bodies, but not in Escherichia coli or zymosan substrates. Coupled with changes in apoptotic cell-induced cytokine release and migration, these data identify specific deficits in the ability of iPSC-MGLCs harboring TREM2 missense mutations to respond to specific pathogenic signals. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Authors Garcia-Reitboeck P, Phillips A, Piers TM, Villegas-Llerena C, Butler M, Mallach A, Rodrigues C, Arber CE, Heslegrave A, Zetterberg H, Neumann H, Neame S, Houlden H, Hardy J, Pocock JM
Journal Cell reports
Publication Date 2018 Aug 28;24(9):2300-2311
PubMed 30157425
PubMed Central PMC6130048
DOI 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.07.094

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