Single Cell Gene Expression Profiling in Alzheimer's Disease
Development and implementation of microarray techniques to quantify expression levels of dozens to hundreds to thousands of transcripts simultaneously within select tissue samples from normal control subjects and neurodegenerative diseased brains has enabled scientists to create molecular fingerprints of vulnerable neuronal populations in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and related disorders. A goal is to sample gene expression from homogeneous cell types within a defined region without potential contamination by expression profiles of adjacent neuronal subpopulations and nonneuronal cells. The precise resolution afforded by single cell and population cell RNA analysis in combination with microarrays and real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR)-based analyses allows for relative gene expression level comparisons across cell types under different experimental conditions and disease progression. The ability to analyze single cells is an important distinction from global and regional assessments of mRNA expression and can be applied to optimally prepared tissues from animal models of neurodegeneration as well as postmortem human brain tissues. Gene expression analysis in postmortem AD brain regions including the hippocampal formation and neocortex reveals selectively vulnerable cell types share putative pathogenetic alterations in common classes of transcripts, for example, markers of glutamatergic neurotransmission, synaptic-related markers, protein phosphatases and kinases, and neurotrophins/neurotrophin receptors. Expression profiles of vulnerable regions and neurons may reveal important clues toward the understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of various neurological diseases and aid in identifying rational targets toward pharmacotherapeutic interventions for progressive, late-onset neurodegenerative disorders such as mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and AD. © 2006 The American Society for Experimental NeuroTherapeutics, Inc.
aging, Microarray, mild cognitive impairment, molecular fingerprint, neurodegeneration, postmortem human brain, qPCR, RNA amplification
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Ginsberg, Stephen D.; Che, Shaoli; Counts, Scott E.; and Mufson, Elliott J., "Single Cell Gene Expression Profiling in Alzheimer's Disease" (2006). Translational Neuroscience. 1950.