Cell-Type-Specific Gene Expression Profiling in Adult Mouse Brain Reveals Normal and Disease-State Signatures

Cell Rep. 2019 Feb 26;26(9):2477-2493.e9. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2019.02.003.


The role of brain cell-type-specific functions and profiles in pathological and non-pathological contexts is still poorly defined. Such cell-type-specific gene expression profiles in solid, adult tissues would benefit from approaches that avoid cellular stress during isolation. Here, we developed such an approach and identified highly selective transcriptomic signatures in adult mouse striatal direct and indirect spiny projection neurons, astrocytes, and microglia. Integrating transcriptomic and epigenetic data, we obtained a comprehensive model for cell-type-specific regulation of gene expression in the mouse striatum. A cross-analysis with transcriptomic and epigenomic data generated from mouse and human Huntington's disease (HD) brains shows that opposite epigenetic mechanisms govern the transcriptional regulation of striatal neurons and glial cells and may contribute to pathogenic and compensatory mechanisms. Overall, these data validate this less stressful method for the investigation of cellular specificity in the adult mouse brain and demonstrate the potential of integrative studies using multiple databases.

Keywords: HD patients; HD transgenic mice; Huntington’s disease; cell-type-specific profiling; epigenetics; striatum; transcriptomics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • DNA / chemistry
  • Epigenesis, Genetic
  • Gene Expression Profiling / methods
  • Humans
  • Huntington Disease / genetics*
  • Huntington Disease / metabolism
  • Laser Capture Microdissection / methods
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism


  • MicroRNAs
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Transcription Factors
  • DNA