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Liu Cheng, Wu Yonggui
(Department of Nephropathy, The First Affiliated Hospital of Anhui Medical University, Hefei, Anhui, China (mainland))
Med Sci Monit 2017; 23:38-45
Uremia involves a series of clinical manifestations and is a common syndrome that occurs in nearly all end-stage kidney diseases. However, the exact genetic and/or molecular mechanisms that underlie uremia remain poorly understood.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: In this case-control study, we analyzed whole-genome microarray of 75 uremia patients and 20 healthy controls to investigate changes in gene expression and cellular mechanisms relevant to uremia. Gene co-expression network analysis was performed to construct co-expression networks using differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in uremia. We then determined hub models of co-expressed gene networks by MCODE, and we used miRNA enrichment analysis to detect key miRNAs in each hub module.
RESULTS: We found nine co-expressed hub modules implicated in uremia. These modules were enriched in specific biological functions, including “proteolysis”, “membrane-enclosed lumen”, and “apoptosis”. Finally, miRNA enrichment analysis to detect key miRNAs in each hub module found 15 miRNAs that were specifically targeted to uremia-related hub modules. Of these, miRNA-21-3p and miRNA-210-3p have been identified in other studies as being important for uremia.
CONCLUSIONS: In summary, our study connected biological functions, genes, and miRNAs that underpin the network modules that can be used to elucidate the molecular mechanisms involved in uremia.