Decreased DNA methyltransferase 3A and 3B mRNA expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and increased plasma SAH concentration in adult patients with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

OBJECTIVE: DNA methylation is known to play an important role in gene transcription and alterations of methylation contribute to the development of certain disorders such as cancer and immunodeficiency. Recent years have found an increasing interest in the role of epigenetic modifications in the etiology of human autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythromatosus (SLE) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) are involved in the epigenetic control of DNA methylation processes. S-adenosylmethionine (SAM) and S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH), as the substrate and product of essential cellular methyltransferase reactions, have important indicator action of cellular methylation status. The aim of this study is to explore if DNA methylation plays a role in the pathogenesis of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). METHODS: DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B mRNA expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of adult ITP patients were analyzed by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Plasma SAM and SAH levels were assayed with reversed-phase high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). RESULTS: DNMT3A and DNMT3B mRNA expressions were significantly lower in ITP patients than in healthy controls (p < 0.001), while DNMT1 mRNA expression was not significantly different between the two groups (p = 0.774). Plasma SAH concentration was significantly elevated in ITP patients than in healthy controls (p < 0.05), while the plasma SAM and SAM/SAH were not significantly different between the two groups (p = 0.133, p = 0.624 respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Our observations suggest that aberrant DNA methylation status reflected by increased plasma SAH concentration and decreased mRNA expression levels of DNMT3A and 3B are possibly involved in the pathogenesis of ITP although the precise mechanisms need further study.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Tao, J; Yang, M; Chen, Z; Huang, Y; Zhao, Q; Xu, J; Ren, H; Zhao, H; Chen, Z; Ren, Q; Yang, R

Published Date

  • September 2008

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 28 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 432 - 439

PubMed ID

  • 18683034

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0271-9142

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s10875-008-9223-2


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Netherlands