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Fatemi S.H.,University of Minnesota | Folsom T.D.,University of Minnesota | Rooney R.J.,Genome Explorations Inc | Thuras P.D.,Medical Center
Translational Psychiatry

Fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) is an RNA-binding protein that targets ∼5% of all mRNAs expressed in the brain. Previous work by our laboratory demonstrated significantly lower protein levels for FMRP in lateral cerebella of subjects with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression when compared with controls. Absence of FMRP expression in animal models of fragile X syndrome (FXS) has been shown to reduce expression of gamma-aminobutyric acid A (GABA A) receptor mRNAs. Previous work by our laboratory has found reduced expression of FMRP, as well as multiple GABA A and GABA B receptor subunits in subjects with autism. Less is known about levels for GABA A subunit protein expression in brains of subjects with schizophrenia and mood disorders. In the current study, we have expanded our previous studies to examine the protein and mRNA expression of two novel GABA A receptors, theta (GABRθ) and rho 2 (GABRρ2) as well as FMRP, and metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) in lateral cerebella of subjects with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and healthy controls, and in superior frontal cortex (Brodmann Area 9 (BA9)) of subjects with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and healthy controls. We observed multiple statistically significant mRNA and protein changes in levels of GABRθ, GABRρ2, mGluR5 and FMRP molecules including concordant reductions in mRNA and proteins for GABRθ and mGluR5 in lateral cerebella of subjects with schizophrenia; for increased mRNA and protein for GABRρ2 in lateral cerebella of subjects with bipolar disorder; and for reduced mRNA and protein for mGluR5 in BA9 of subjects with bipolar disorder. There were no significant effects of confounds on any of the results. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited All rights reserved. Source

Goldenberg D.M.,Garden State Cancer Center | Goldenberg D.M.,Immunomedics, Inc. | Rooney R.J.,Genome Explorations Inc | Loo M.,Immunomedics, Inc. | And 2 more authors.

After demonstrating, with karyotyping, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and fluorescence in-situ hybridization, the retention of certain human chromosomes and genes following the spontaneous fusion of human tumor and hamster cells in-vivo, it was postulated that cell fusion causes the horizontal transmission of malignancy and donor genes. Here, we analyzed gene expression profiles of 3 different hybrid tumors first generated in the hamster cheek pouch after human tumor grafting, and then propagated in hamsters and in cell cultures for years: two Hodgkin lymphomas (GW-532, GW-584) and a glioblastoma multiforme (GB-749). Based on the criteria of MAS 5.0 detection P-values ≤0.065 and at least a 2-fold greater signal expression value than a hamster melanoma control, we identified 3,759 probe sets (ranging from 1,040 to 1,303 in each transplant) from formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded sections of the 3 hybrid tumors, which unambiguously mapped to 3,107 unique Entrez Gene IDs, representative of all human chromosomes; however, by karyology, one of the hybrid tumors (GB-749) had a total of 15 human chromosomes in its cells. Among the genes mapped, 39 probe sets, representing 33 unique Entrez Gene IDs, complied with the detection criteria in all hybrid tumor samples. Five of these 33 genes encode transcription factors that are known to regulate cell growth and differentiation; five encode cell adhesion- and transmigration-associated proteins that participate in oncogenesis and/or metastasis and invasion; and additional genes encode proteins involved in signaling pathways, regulation of apoptosis, DNA repair, and multidrug resistance. These findings were corroborated by PCR and reverse transcription PCR, showing the presence of human alphoid (α)-satellite DNA and the F11R transcripts in additional tumor transplant generations. We posit that in-vivo fusion discloses genes implicated in tumor progression, and gene families coding for the organoid phenotype. Thus, cancer cells can transduce adjacent stromal cells, with the resulting progeny having permanently transcribed genes with malignant and other gene functions of the donor DNA. Using heterospecific in-vivo cell fusion, genes encoding oncogenic and organogenic traits may be identified. © 2014 Goldenberg et al. Source

Pietersen C.Y.,Mailman Research Center | Pietersen C.Y.,Harvard University | Mauney S.A.,Mailman Research Center | Kim S.S.,Mailman Research Center | And 12 more authors.
Journal of Neurogenetics

Disrupted synchronized oscillatory firing of pyramidal neuronal networks in the cerebral cortex in the gamma frequency band (i.e., 30-100 Hz) mediates many of the cognitive deficits and symptoms of schizophrenia. In fact, the density of dendritic spines and the average somal area of pyramidal neurons in layer 3 of the cerebral cortex, which mediate both long-range (associational) and local (intrinsic) corticocortical connections, are decreased in subjects with this illness. To explore the molecular pathophysiology of pyramidal neuronal dysfunction, we extracted ribonucleic acid (RNA) from laser-captured pyramidal neurons from layer 3 of Brodmann's area 42 of the superior temporal gyrus (STG) from postmortem brains from schizophrenia and normal control subjects. We then profiled the messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of these neurons, using microarray technology. We identified 1331 mRNAs that were differentially expressed in schizophrenia, including genes that belong to the transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β) and the bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) signaling pathways. Disturbances of these signaling mechanisms may in part contribute to the altered expression of other genes found to be differentially expressed in this study, such as those that regulate extracellular matrix (ECM), apoptosis, and cytoskeletal and synaptic plasticity. In addition, we identified 10 microRNAs (miRNAs) that were differentially expressed in schizophrenia; enrichment analysis of their predicted gene targets revealed signaling pathways and gene networks that were found by microarray to be dysregulated, raising an interesting possibility that dysfunction of pyramidal neurons in schizophrenia may in part be mediated by a concerted dysregulation of gene network functions as a result of the altered expression of a relatively small number of miRNAs. Taken together, findings of this study provide a neurobiological framework within which specific hypotheses about the molecular mechanisms of pyramidal cell dysfunction in schizophrenia can be formulated. © 2014 Informa Healthcare USA, Inc. Source

Kim W.,Harvard University | Kim W.,Hanyang University | Lee Y.,Harvard University | McKenna N.D.,Harvard University | And 8 more authors.
Neurobiology of Aging

Dopamine (DA) neurons in sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD) display dysregulated gene expression networks and signaling pathways that are implicated in PD pathogenesis. Micro (mi)RNAs are regulators of gene expression, which could be involved in neurodegenerative diseases. We determined the miRNA profiles in laser microdissected DA neurons from postmortem sporadic PD patients' brains and age-matched controls. DA neurons had a distinctive miRNA signature and a set of miRNAs was dysregulated in PD. Bioinformatics analysis provided evidence for correlations of miRNAs with signaling pathways relevant to PD, including an association of miR-126 with insulin/IGF-1/PI3K signaling. In DA neuronal cell systems, enhanced expression of miR-126 impaired IGF-1 signaling and increased vulnerability to the neurotoxin 6-OHDA by downregulating factors in IGF-1/PI3K signaling, including its targets p85β, IRS-1, and SPRED1. Blocking of miR-126 function increased IGF-1 trophism and neuroprotection to 6-OHDA. Our data imply that elevated levels of miR-126 may play a functional role in DA neurons and in PD pathogenesis by downregulating IGF-1/PI3K/AKT signaling and that its inhibition could be a mechanism of neuroprotection. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. Source

Agency: Department of Health and Human Services | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 425.95K | Year: 2011

Alcohol abuse and its related health effects are estimated to have an economic cost in the US that approaches $200 Billion per year. However, current tests for alcohol use/abuse are not reliable except when administered within several hours of intoxication. Moreover, current clinical tests for alcohol-related organ damage only provide reasonable diagnostic and prognostic value after the damage has occurred. This study is designed to examine the effect of alcohol on micro RNAs (miRNAs), a newly discovered class of gene expression regulators that are believed to play important roles in vital cellular functions, development and disease. Genome Explorations Inc. (GenEx) proposes to use a well-validated mouse model system to identify alcohol-induced changes in miRNA expression in blood, liver and cerebellum and assess their ability to act as sensitive and specific indicators of acute alcohol use and alcohol-induced liver damage. Identification of such biomarkers may lead to the development of more sensitive and specific tests that can detect alcohol consumption well after the fact, and the early onset (or pre-onset indicators) of alcohol induced liver damage.

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