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Gene expression changes associated with trajectories of psychopathology in a longitudinal cohort of children and adolescents

Vanessa Kiyomi Ota, Marcos Leite Santoro, Leticia Maria Spindola, Pedro Mario Pan, Andressa Simabucuro, Gabriela Xavier, Tamiris Vieira-Fonseca, Sciprofile linkÉvelin A. Zanardo, Felipe Rodolfo Camargo Dos Santos, Julia Luiza Schäfer, Leslie Domenici Kulikowski, Pedro A. F. Galante, Paula Fontes Asprino, Elisa Brietzke, Sciprofile linkRodrigo Grassi-Oliveira, Luis Augusto Rohde, Euripedes Constantino Miguel, Ary Gadelha, Jair Jesus Mari, Rodrigo Affonseca Bressan, Giovanni Abrahao Salum, Sciprofile linkSintia Iole Nogueira Belangero
Translational Psychiatry , Volume 10, pp 1-9; doi:10.1038/s41398-020-0772-3

Abstract: We aimed to identify blood gene expression patterns associated to psychopathological trajectories retrieved from a large community, focusing on the emergence and remission of general psychiatric symptoms. Hundred and three individuals from the Brazilian High-Risk Cohort Study (BHRCS) for mental disorders were classified in four groups according to Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) total score at the baseline (w0) and after 3 years (w1): low–high (L–H) (N = 27), high–low (H–L) (N = 12), high–high (H–H) (N = 34) and low–low (L–L) groups (N = 30). Blood gene expression profile was measured using Illumina HT-12 Beadchips, and paired analyses comparing w0 and w1 were performed for each group. Results: 98 transcripts were differentially expressed comparing w0 and w1 in the L-H, 33 in the H–L, 177 in the H–H and 273 in the L–L. Of these, 66 transcripts were differentially expressed exclusively in the L–H; and 6 only in the H–L. Cross-Lagged Panel Models analyses revealed that RPRD2 gene expression at w1 might be influenced by the CBCL score at w0. Moreover, COX5B, SEC62, and NDUFA2 were validated with another technique and were also differentially regulated in postmortem brain of subjects with mental disorders, indicating that they might be important not only to specific disorders, but also to general psychopathology and symptoms trajectories. Whereas genes related to metabolic pathways seem to be associated with the emergence of psychiatric symptoms, mitochondrial inner membrane genes might be important over the course of normal development. These results suggest that changes in gene expression can be detected in blood in different psychopathological trajectories.
Keywords: Biomarkers / psychiatric disorders

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