Changes in the transcriptome of the prefrontal cortex of OXYS rats as the signs of Alzheimer’s disease development. N. A. Stefanova, E. E. Korbolina, N. I. Ershov, E. I. Rogaev, N. G. Kolosova


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most prevalent neuro­degenerative disease. It produces atrophic changes in the brain, which cause dementia. The incidence of AD is increasing with increasing life expectancy and gradual aging of the population in developed countries. There are no effective prophylactic inter­ventions because of insufficient understanding of the AD pathogenesis and the absence of adequate experimental models. Recently, we showed that senescence-accelerated OXYS rats represent a promis­ing model of AD; in these rats, accelerated aging of the brain is accompanied by the typical signs of AD: degenerative alterations and death of neurons, a de­crease in synaptic density, mitochondrial dysfunction, hyperphosphorylation of the tau protein, an increased level of amyloid β (Aβ1–42), and the formation of amyloid plaques. To elucidate how these signs develop, we used a nextgeneration RNA sequencing technique (RNA-Seq) to study the prefron­tal-cortex transcriptome of OXYS rats during the manifestation of AD signs (at an age of 5 months) and during their active progres­sion (at an age of 18 months), using age-matched Wistar rats (parental strain) as controls. At the age of 5 months, there were significant differences between OXYS and Wistar rats (p < 0.01) in the mRNA expression of more than 900 genes (> 2000 genes at the age of 18 months) in the prefrontal cortex. Most of these genes were related to neuronal plasticity, protein phosphorylation, Са2+ homeostasis, hypoxia, immune processes, and apoptosis. Between the ages of 5 and 18 months, there were changes in the expression of 499 genes in Wistar rats and changes in the expres­sion of 5500 genes in OXYS rats. Only 333 genes were common between these sets. This finding points to differences in the mechanisms and rates of age-related changes in the brain between normal aging and the period of development of AD-specific neuro­degene­rative processes.

About The Authors:

N. A. Stefanova. Institute of Cytology and Genetics SB RAS, Russian Federation, Novosibirsk

E. E. Korbolina. Institute of Cytology and Genetics SB RAS, Russian Federation, Novosibirsk

N. I. Ershov. Institute of Cytology and Genetics SB RAS, Russian Federation, Novosibirsk

E. I. Rogaev. Institute of Cytology and Genetics SB RAS, Russian Federation, Novosibirsk

N. G. Kolosova. Institute of Cytology and Genetics SB RAS; Novosibirsk State University, Russian Federation, Novosibirsk


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