Study of Neuronal Apoptosis ceRNA Network in Hippocampal Sclerosis of Human Temporal Lobe Epilepsy by RNA-Seq

Front Neurosci. 2021 Nov 12:15:770627. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2021.770627. eCollection 2021.


Hippocampal sclerosis (HS) is one of the most common pathological type of intractable temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), often characterized by hippocampal atrophy, neuronal apoptosis, and gliogenesis. However, the molecular mechanisms of neuronal apoptosis in patients with HS are still not fully understood. We therefore conducted a pilot study focusing on the neuronal apoptosis ceRNA network in the sclerotic hippocampus of intractable TLE patients. In this research, RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) was utilized to quantify the expression levels of lncRNAs, miRNAs, and mRNAs in TLE patients with HS (HS-TLE) and without HS (non-HS-TLE), and reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR). The interactions of differential expression (DE) lncRNAs-miRNAs or DEmiRNAs-mRNAs were integrated by StarBase v3.0, and visualized using Cytoscape. Subsequently, we annotate the functions of lncRNA-associated competitive endogenous RNA (ceRNA) network through analysis of their interactions with mRNAs. RNA-seq analyses showed 381 lncRNAs, 42 miRNAs, and 457 mRNAs were dysregulated expression in HS-TLE compared to non-HS-TLE. According to the ceRNA hypothesis, 5 HS-specific ceRNA network were constructed. Among them, the core ceRNA regulatory network involved in neuronal apoptosis was constituted by 10 DElncRNAs (CDKN2B-AS1, MEG3, UBA6-AS1, etc.), 7 DEmiRNAs (hsa-miR-155-5p, hsa-miR-195-5p, hsa-miR-200c-3p, etc.), and 3 DEmRNAs (SCN2A, DYRK2, and MAPK8), which belonging to apoptotic and epileptic terms. Our findings established the first ceRNA network of lncRNA-mediated neuronal apoptosis in HS-TLE based on transcriptome sequencing, which provide a new perspective on the disease pathogenesis and precise treatments of HS.

Keywords: ceRNA; hippocampal sclerosis; lncRNAs; miRNAs; temporal lobe epilepsy.