Serum miR-96-5P and miR-339-5P Are Potential Biomarkers for Multiple System Atrophy and Parkinson's Disease

Front Aging Neurosci. 2021 Jul 26;13:632891. doi: 10.3389/fnagi.2021.632891. eCollection 2021.


Parkinson's disease (PD) and Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) are progressive neurodegenerative diseases with overlap of symptoms in early stages of disease. No reliable biomarker exists and the diagnosis is mainly based on clinical features. Several studies suggest that miRNAs are involved in PD and MSA pathogenesis. Our goal was to study two serum circulating microRNAs (miR-96-5p and miR-339-5p) as novel biomarkers for the differential diagnosis between PD and MSA. Serum samples were obtained from 51 PD patients, 52 MSA patients and 56 healthy controls (HC). We measured levels of miRNAs using quantitative PCR and compared the levels of miR-96-5p and miR-339-5p among PD, MSA and HC groups using a one-way analysis of variance. Correlations between miRNA expression and clinical data were calculated using Pearson's rho test. We used the miRTarBase to detect miRNA targets and STRING to evaluate co-expression relationship among target genes. MiR-96-5p was significantly increased in MSA patients compared with HC (Fold change (fc): 3.6; p = 0.0001) while it was decreased in PD patients compared with HC (Fold change: 4; p = 0.0002). Higher miR-96-5P levels were directly related to longer disease duration in MSA patients. We observed a significant increase of miR-339-5p in MSA patients compared with PD patients (fc: 2.5; p = 0.00013). miR-339-5p was increased in MSA patients compared with HC (fc: 2.4; p = 0.002). We identified 32 target genes of miR-96-5p and miR-339-5p, some of which are involved in neurodegenerative diseases. The study of those miRNAs could be useful to identify non-invasive biomarkers for early differential diagnosis between PD and MSA.

Keywords: Parkinson's disease; biomarkers; miR-339-5p; miR-96-5p; microRNAs; multiple system atrophy.