Differential gene expression profiling in whole blood during acute systemic inflammation in lipopolysaccharide-treated rats

National Center for Toxicogenomics, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27709, USA.
Physiological Genomics (Impact Factor: 2.37). 04/2005; 21(1):92-104. DOI: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00190.2004
Source: PubMed


Microarrays have been used to evaluate the expression of thousands of genes in various tissues. However, few studies have investigated the change in gene expression profiles in one of the most easily accessible tissues, whole blood. We utilized an acute inflammation model to investigate the possibility of using a cDNA microarray to measure the gene expression profile in the cells of whole blood. Blood was collected from male Sprague-Dawley rats at 2 and 6 h after treatment with 5 mg/kg (ip) LPS. Hematology showed marked neutrophilia accompanied by lymphopenia at both time points. TNF-alpha and IL-6 levels were markedly elevated at 2 h, indicating acute inflammation, but by 6 h the levels had declined. Total RNA was isolated from whole blood and hybridized to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Rat Chip v.3.0. LPS treatment caused 226 and 180 genes to be differentially expressed at 2 and 6 h, respectively. Many of the differentially expressed genes are involved in inflammation and the acute phase response, but differential expression was also noted in genes involved in the cytoskeleton, cell adhesion, oxidative respiration, and transcription. Real-time RT-PCR confirmed the differential regulation of a representative subset of genes. Principal component analysis of gene expression discriminated between the acute inflammatory response apparent at 2 h and the observed recovery underway at 6 h. These studies indicate that, in whole blood, changes in gene expression profiles can be detected that are reflective of inflammation, despite the adaptive shifts in leukocyte populations that accompany such inflammatory processes.

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