Table_3_Gene Transcript Alterations in the Spinal Cord, Anterior Cingulate Cortex, and Amygdala in Mice Following Peripheral Nerve Injury.DOCX
Chronic neuropathic pain caused by nerve damage is a most common clinical symptom, often accompanied by anxiety- and depression-like symptoms. Current treatments are very limited at least in part due to incompletely understanding mechanisms underlying this disorder. Changes in gene expression in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) have been acknowledged to implicate in neuropathic pain genesis, but how peripheral nerve injury alters the gene expression in other pain-associated regions remains elusive. The present study carried out strand-specific next-generation RNA sequencing with a higher sequencing depth and observed the changes in whole transcriptomes in the spinal cord (SC), anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), and amygdala (AMY) following unilateral fourth lumbar spinal nerve ligation (SNL). In addition to providing novel transcriptome profiles of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) and mRNAs, we identified pain- and emotion-related differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and revealed that numbers of these DEGs displayed a high correlation to neuroinflammation and apoptosis. Consistently, functional analyses showed that the most significant enriched biological processes of the upregulated mRNAs were involved in the immune system process, apoptotic process, defense response, inflammation response, and sensory perception of pain across three regions. Moreover, the comparisons of pain-, anxiety-, and depression-related DEGs among three regions present a particular molecular map among the spinal cord and supraspinal structures and indicate the region-dependent and region-independent alterations of gene expression after nerve injury. Our study provides a resource for gene transcript expression patterns in three distinct pain-related regions after peripheral nerve injury. Our findings suggest that neuroinflammation and apoptosis are important pathogenic mechanisms underlying neuropathic pain and that some DEGs might be promising therapeutic targets.