A novel microtubule-associated protein-2 expressed in oligodendrocytes in multiple sclerosis lesions

Bridget Shafit-Zagardo, Yvonne Kress, Meng Liang Zhao, Sunhee C. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Elucidation of the mechanisms involved in the regeneration of oligodendrocytes and remyelination is a central issue in multiple sclerosis (MS) research. We recently identified a novel alternatively spliced, developmentally regulated oligodendrocyte-specific protein designated microtubule-associated protein-2 + 13 [microtubule-associated protein-2 expressing exon 13 (MAP-2 + 13)]. MAP-2 + 13 is expressed in human fetal oligodendrocytes during process extension and myelination but is minimally expressed in normal mature CNS. To test the hypothesis that MAP-2 + 13 is reexpressed in regenerating oligodendrocytes in MS lesions, we examined the brains of MS patients for the expression of this protein. By immunocytochemistry using a series of monoclonal antibodies specific for MAP- 2 + 13, we determined that MAP-2 + 13 expression was up-regulated in all 31 lesions from 10 different MS brains. MAP-2 + 13 was expressed in regenerating oligodendrocytes associated with demyelinated lesions, with the highest counts found in regions of extensive remyelination. By electron microscopy, MAP-2 + 13 was localized to oligodendrocytes engaged in remyelination, evident by their process extension and association with thinly myelinated (remyelinated) and demyelinated axons. These results suggest a hitherto unsuspected role for this microtubule-associated protein in oligodendrocyte function during development and myelin repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2531-2537
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurochemistry
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1999


  • Demyelination
  • Microtubule-associated protein-2
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Myelination
  • Remyelination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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