Circulating microRNAs in Huntington's disease: Emerging mediators in metabolic impairment
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Huntington's disease (HD) is a hereditary neurodegenerative disease, with peripheral consequences that negatively contribute to quality of life. Circulating microRNAs (cmiRNAs) are being explored for their roles in intercellular communication and gene expression regulation, which allows gaining insight into the regulation of crosstalk between neuronal and peripheral tissues. Here, we explore the cmiRNA profile of plasma samples from fifteen symptomatic patients, with 40-45 CAG repeats in the HTT gene, and seven healthy matched controls. Isolated miRNAs from plasma samples were run against human miRNome panels, which have sequences for 752 human mature miRNAs. We found that 168 cmiRNAs are altered in symptomatic patients. Considering Bonferroni's correction, miR-877-5p, miR-223-3p, miR-223-5p, miR-30d-5p, miR-128, miR-22-5p, miR-222-3p, miR-338-3p, miR-130b-3p, miR-425-5p, miR-628-3p, miR-361-5p, miR-942 are significantly increased in HD patients as compared with controls. Moreover, after patient's organization according to approved HD scales, miR-122-5p is significantly decreased in HD patients with Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale >24, whereas an increase in miR-100-5p levels and a decrease in miR-641 and miR-330-3p levels were recorded when patients were rearranged by Total Functional Capacity. These results suggest that cmiRNA profile could be further modified by disease progression, making cmiRNAs useful as monitoring biomarkers. Analysis of target genes indicated a general overexpression of cmiRNAs implicated in metabolism regulation. Profiling cmiRNA of HD subjects opens the possibility of personalized therapies for different groups of HD patients, based on disease modifiers: regulation of altered pathways might contribute to not only alleviate disease symptoms, but also influence HD progression. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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