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  • Publication : 22 02 2020
  • Catégorie :La recherche médicale et génétique

miR-206 Reduces the Severity of Motor Neuron Degeneration in the Facial Nuclei of the Brainstem in a Mouse Model of SMA.    

Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a severe neuromuscular disease affecting infants caused by alterations of the survival motor neuron gene, which results in progressive degeneration of motor neurons (MNs). Although an effective treatment for SMA patients has been recently developed, the molecular pathway involved in selective MN degeneration has not been yet elucidated. In particular, miR-206 has been demonstrated to play a relevant role in the regeneration of neuromuscular junction in several MN diseases, and particularly it is upregulated in the quadriceps, tibialis anterior, spinal cord, and serum of SMA mice. In the present paper, we demonstrated that miR-206 was transiently upregulated also in the brainstem of the mouse model of SMA, SMA?7, in the early phase of the disease paralleling MN degeneration and was down-regulated in the late symptomatic phase. To prevent this downregulation, we intracerebroventricularly injected miR-206 in SMA pups, demonstrating that miR-206 reduced the severity of SMA pathology, slowing down disease progression, increasing survival rate, and improving behavioral performance of mice. Interestingly, exogenous miRNA-206-induced upregulation caused a reduction of the predicted target sodium calcium exchanger isoform 2, NCX2, one of the main regulators of intracellular [Ca2+] and [Na+]. Therefore, we hypothesized that miR-206 might exert part of its neuroprotective effect modulating NCX2 expression in SMA disease.

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