Microarray analysis of gene expression in adult retinal ganglion cells.
Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) transfer visual information to the brain and are known to be susceptible to selective degeneration in various neuropathies such as glaucoma. This selective vulnerability suggests that these highly specialized neurons possess a distinct gene expression profile that becomes altered by neuropathy-associated stresses, which lead to the RGC death. In this study, to identify genes expressed predominantly in adult RGCs, a global transcriptional profile of purified primary RGCs has been compared to that of the whole retina. To avoid alterations of the original gene expression profile by cell culture conditions, we isolated RNA directly from adult RGCs purified by immunopanning without prior sub-cultivation. Genes expressed predominantly in RGCs included: Nrg1, Rgn, 14-3-3 family (Ywhah, Ywhaz, Ywhab), Nrn1, Gap43, Vsnl1, Rgs4. Some of these genes may serve as novel markers for these neurons. Our analysis revealed enrichment in genes controlling the pro-survival pathways in RGCs as compared to other retinal cells.
Ivanov, D; Dvoriantchikova, G; Nathanson, L; McKinnon, SJ; Shestopalov, VI
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