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2005 Grant - Lin
RNA Oxidation in Alzheimer's Disease
Chien-Iiang Glenn Lin, Ph.D.
Ohio State University Research Center
2005 Investigator-Initiated Research Grant
Messenger RNA is a kind of genetic "photocopy" that delivers a gene's protein-building instructions to a cell's "protein factories." Alterations in mRNA, or changes to those instructions, could lead to modification of cell function or cell death. Recent studies have shown that in Alzheimer's disease, mRNA may experience oxidative damage. This damage is the result of naturally occurring toxic oxygen molecules that are normally held in check by various systems in the body, including its use of vitamins.
Chien-Iiang Glenn Lin, Ph.D., and associates have developed a novel procedure for isolating and characterizing mRNA that has been oxidized. They have found evidence of oxidized mRNA in autopsied brain tissues from people with Alzheimer's disease. The researchers also observed that the oxidized mRNA is associated specifically with proteins that have been implicated in Alzheimer's disease processes. In cell studies, they also found that oxidized mRNA could not communicate accurate instructions, resulting in a loss of normal protein function and protein levels.
In this investigation, Dr. Lin's team will quantify mRNA oxidation in Alzheimer brains. They will also assess in cultured cells the potential link between oxidized mRNA and key pathological features of the disease. The outcome may clarify our understanding of disease processes and suggest new strategies for treatment.