Pluto Bioinformatics

GSE145314: Loss of Tmem106b leads to myelination deficits: implications for FTD treatment strategies

Bulk RNA sequencing

Genetic variants that define two distinct haplotypes at the TMEM106B locus have been implicated in multiple neurodegenerative diseases and in healthy brain aging. In frontotemporal dementia (FTD), the high expressing TMEM106B risk haplotype was shown to increase susceptibility for FTD with TDP-43 inclusions (FTD-TDP) and to modify disease penetrance in progranulin mutation carriers (FTD-GRN). To further elucidate the biological function of TMEM106B and determine whether lowering TMEM106B may be a viable therapeutic strategy, we performed brain transcriptomic analyses in 8-month-old animals from our recently developed Tmem106b-/- mouse model. We included 10 Tmem106b+/+ (WT), 10 Tmem106b+/- and 10 Tmem106-/- mice. The most differentially expressed genes (153 down-regulated and 60 upregulated) were identified between Tmem106b-/- and WT animals, with an enrichment for genes implicated in myelination-related cellular processes including axon ensheathment and oligodendrocyte differentiation. Co-expression analysis also revealed that the most downregulated group of correlated genes was enriched for myelination-related processes. We further detected a significant loss of Olig2-positive cells in the corpus callosum of Tmem106b-/- mice, which was present already in young animals (21 days) and persisted until old age (23 months), without worsening. qPCR revealed a reduction of differentiated but not undifferentiated oligodendrocytes cellular markers. While no obvious changes in myelin were observed at the ultrastructure levels in unchallenged animals, treatment with cuprizone revealed that Tmem106b-/- mice are more susceptible to cuprizone-induced de-myelination and have a reduced capacity to re-myelinate, a finding which we were able to replicate in a newly generated Tmem106b CRISPR/cas9 knock-out mouse model. Finally, using a TMEM106B HeLa knock-out cell line, we determined that loss of TMEM106B leads to abnormalities in the distribution of lysosomes and PLP1 trafficking but not to differences in MOG trafficking which is lysosome-independent. Together these findings reveal an important function for TMEM106B in myelination with possible consequences for therapeutic strategies aimed at lowering TMEM106B levels. SOURCE: Yingxue Ren ( - Mayo Clinic

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