To measure the effect of dipeptide repeat protein expression on iMN survival, PR50 and GR50 were cloned into the pHAGE lentiviral vector as fusions with GFP to allow tracking of protein expression. iMN cultures were transduced with PR50 and GR50 lentiviruses at day 17 of reprogramming and longitudinal survival analysis was started the same day. 10 ng/ml of GDNF, BDNF, and CNTF was maintained throughout the experiment, and glutamate treatment was not performed. To measure PR50 turnover, PR50 was cloned into the pHAGE lentiviral vector as a fusion with Dendra2 (Addgene). iPSC-derived fibroblasts were generated according to Daley and colleagues64. Briefly, when C9ORF72−/− iPSC cultures reached 80% confluence, the medium was switched from mTeSR1 (Stem Cell Technologies) to human fibroblast medium containing DMEM (Life Technologies), 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS)(Thermo Fisher Scientific), and 1% penicillin/streptomycin (Life Technologies). Cells were passaged 2 to 3 times using Accutase (Life Technologies) before use in experiments. iPSC-derived fibroblasts were transduced with either pMXs-eGFP or pMXs-C9ORF72 isoform B-T2A-eGFP retrovirus and treated with 10 μg/ml mitomycin C for 3 hrs to inhibit cell proliferation. The cells were then transduced with the PR50–Dendra2 lentivirus and exposed to blue light for 1.5 sec using a lumencor LED light source to initiate photoconversion. The amount of decay (as a fraction of the starting level) of the red fluorescent punctae was monitored by longitudinal time lapse imaging in a Molecular Devices ImageExpress and analyzed using SVCell 2.0 (DRVision Technologies). Fluorescence was quantified at t = 0 and 12 hours after photoconversion. Distinct photoconverted punctae were treated as discrete objects for analysis (n = 20 each for +eGFP and +C9ORF72-T2A-eGFP). For each object, background fluorescence was subtracted and fluorescence was normalized according to object size. The fractional decay was statistically analyzed by two-tailed Student’s t-test. ** - p<.01.
Human lymphocytes from healthy subjects and ALS patients were obtained from the NINDS Biorepository at the Coriell Institute for Medical Research and reprogrammed into iPSCs as previously described using episomal vectors61. Briefly, mammalian expression vectors containing Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, L-Myc, Lin28, and a p53 shRNA were introduced into the lymphocytes using the Adult Dermal Fibroblast Nucleofector™ Kit and Nucleofector™ 2b Device (Lonza) according to the manufacturer’s protocol. The cells were then cultured on mouse feeders until iPSC colonies appeared. The colonies were then expanded and maintained on Matrigel (BD) in mTeSR1 medium (Stem Cell Technologies).