Dataset Information


MicroRNA-21 dysregulates the expression of MEF2C in neurons in monkey and human SIV/HIV neurological disease

ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have important roles in regulating a plethora of physiological and pathophysiogical processes including neurodegeneration. In both human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-associated dementia in humans and its monkey model simian immunodeficiency virus encephalitis (SIVE), we find miR-21, a miRNA largely known for its link to oncogenesis, to be significantly upregulated in the brain. In situ hybridization of the diseased brain sections revealed induction of miR-21 in neurons. miR-21 can be induced in neurons by prolonged N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor stimulation, an excitotoxic process active in HIV and other neurodegenerative diseases. Introduction of miR-21 into human neurons leads to pathological functional defects. Furthermore, we show that miR-21 specifically targets the mRNA of myocyte enhancer factor 2C (MEF2C), a transcription factor crucial for neuronal function, and reduces its expression. MEF2C is dramatically downregulated in neurons of HIV-associated dementia patients, as well as monkeys with SIVE. Together, this study elucidates a novel role for miR-21 in the brain, not only as a potential signature of neurological disease, but also as a crucial effector of HIV-induced neuronal dysfunction and neurodegeneration. Overall design: Total cellular RNA was isolated from frozen (−80°C) brain specimens by using TRIzol (Invitrogen, Carlsbad, CA, USA) for the monkey samples, and RNAzol (Biotecx Laboratories, Houston, TX, USA) for the human samples, followed by column purification (miRNeasy, Qiagen, Valencia, CA, USA) as per manufacture's instructions. For the monkeys, four samples were from uninfected animals and four from SIV-infected animals that developed simian AIDS with SIV encephalitis. For the human samples, six samples were from individuals who were HIV negative with no history of dementia or neurocognitive disability and showed no significant neuropathology. Five samples were from HIV positive individuals that were neurocognitively impaired (NNTC clinical rating >6)38 and a neuropathological diagnosis of HIV encephalitis. Clinical information is provided in the supplemental material. For microarray analysis, only three of the HAD specimens were sufficient for use, but all five were used for the qRT-PCR studies.

INSTRUMENT(S): Exiqon miRCURY LNA microRNA array v.11.0 [miRBase v13]

ORGANISM(S): Homo sapiens  

SUBMITTER: Howard Fox 




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