Gene expression profiles in the rat hypoglossal nucleus after axotomy were demonstrated using expressed-sequence-tag (EST) approach. To demonstrate the gene-expression profiles after axotomy, nerve-transected hypoglossal nuclei were dissected and collected from about 1000 rats, with which a cDNA library was constructed. More than 750 clones were sub-cloned and sequenced from the library. The clones which hit frequently are likely to be associated with mitochondrial respiratory chain, cytoskeletal protein and protein synthesis. One hundred three clones from among the sequenced clones were further processed for histological screening using unilateral-hypoglossal nerve-transected brain sections by in situ hybridization histochemistry. In situ hybridization study revealed that 26% of clones examined showed upregulated expression of mRNA in response to axotomy. They included genes encoding proteins associated with glucose, lipid and protein metabolism, cytoskeleton, neurotransmission and immune reaction. The present EST analysis may have an advantage in targeting genes which are associated with nerve injury with a good efficacy, as compared with other methods such as differential display and subtraction.
Copyright 1999 Elsevier Science B.V.