Venue: Centre Broca Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Université de Montréal, Montréal, Qc, Canada
Invited by Aude Panatier
Glial cells in the maintenance and repair of neuromuscular junctions in health and disease.
Glial cells contribute closely to a large number of functions in the nervous system. At the neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), the exclusive contact between motor neurons and muscle, glial cells at this synapse regulate synaptic transmission, morphological stability and repair. The structure and functions of NMJs are highly regulated to ensure sustained and robust control of motor movements. However, alterations in life and in diseases lead to debilitating conditions, frailty, loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength, causing a decline in neurophysiological functions. I will discuss recent advances in our understanding of the roles of glial cells in the maintenance and repair of NMJs using animal models and analyses of neuromuscular changes in human. I will discuss how the altered mechanisms may contribute to NMJ denervation and instability observed in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and in aging. Strategies to use NMJs and its glial cells as therapeutic target in ALS will also be presented.