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Screening of Critical Genes and MicroRNAs in Blood Samples of Patients with Ruptured Intracranial Aneurysms by Bioinformatic Analysis of Gene Expression Data

Lijuan Bo, Bo Wei, Zhanfeng Wang, Daliang Kong, Zheng Gao, Zhuang Miao

Department of Infections, China-Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, Jilin, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2017; 23:4518-4525

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.902953

Available online:

Published: 2017-09-20

BACKGROUND: This study aimed to identify more potential genes and miRNAs associated with the pathogenesis of intracranial aneurysms (IAs).
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The dataset of GSE36791 (accession number) was downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were screened for in the blood samples from patients with ruptured IAs and controls, followed by functional and pathway enrichment analyses. In addition, gene co-expression network was constructed and significant modules were extracted from the network by WGCNA R package. Screening for miRNAs that could regulate DEGs in the modules was performed and an analysis of regulatory relationships was conducted.
RESULTS: A total of 304 DEGs (167 up-regulated and 137 down-regulated genes) were screened for in blood samples from patients with ruptured IAs compared with those from controls. Functional enrichment analysis showed that the up-regulated genes were mainly associated with immune response and the down-regulated DEGs were mainly concerned with the structure of ribosome and translation. Besides, six functional modules were significantly identified, including four modules enriched by up-regulated genes and two modules enriched by down-regulated genes. Thereinto, the blue, yellow, and turquoise modules of up-regulated genes were all linked with immune response. Additionally, 16 miRNAs were predicted to regulate DEGs in the three modules associated with immune response, such as hsa-miR-1304, hsa-miR-33b, hsa-miR-125b, and hsa-miR-125a-5p.
CONCLUSIONS: Several genes and miRNAs (such as miR-1304, miR-33b, IRS2 and KCNJ2) may take part in the pathogenesis of IAs.

Keywords: Gene Regulatory Networks, intracranial aneurysm, transcriptional activation