Levels of Bcl-2 and P53 Are Altered in Superior Frontal and Cerebellar Cortices of Autistic Subjects
10.1023/B:CEMN.0000005322.27203.73 Cite this article as: Araghi-Niknam, M. & Fatemi, S.H. Cell Mol Neurobiol (2003) 23: 945. doi:10.1023/B:CEMN.0000005322.27203.73 Abstract
1.Autistic disease (AD) is a severe neuropsychiatric disorder affecting 2–4 children per 10,000. We have recently shown reduction of Bcl-2 and increase in P53, two important markers of apoptosis, in parietal cortex of autistic subjects.
2.We hypothesized that brain levels of Bcl-2 and P53 would also be altered in superior frontal cortex and cerebellum of age-, sex, and postmortem-interval (PMI)-matched autistic subjects (
N = 5 autistic, N = 4 controls).
3.Brain extracts were prepared from superior frontal cortex and cerebellum and subjected to Western blotting.
4.Results showed that levels of Bcl-2 decreased by 38% and 36% in autistic superior frontal and cerebellar cortices, respectively when compared to control tissues. By the same token, levels of P53 increased by 67.5% and 38% in the same brain areas in autistic subjects vs. controls respectively. Calculations of ratios of Bcl-2/P53 values also decreased by 75% and 43% in autistic frontal and cerebellar cortices vs. controls respectively. The autistic cerebellar values were significantly reduced (
p < 0.08) vs. control only. There were no significant differences in levels of β-actin between the two groups. Additionally, there were no correlations between Bcl-2, P53, and β-actin concentrations vs. age or PMI in either group.
5.These results confirm and extend previous data that levels of Bcl-2 and P53 are altered in three important brain tissues, i.e. frontal, parietal, and cerebellar cortices of autistic subjects, alluding to deranged apoptotic mechanisms in autism.
P53 Bcl-2 autism superior frontal cortex cerebellum western blotting References
Abell, F., et al. (1999). The neuroanatomy of autism. A voxel-based whole brain analysis of structural scans.
Afzal, M. A., and Minor, P. D. (2002). Vaccines, Crohn's disease and autism.
Araki, N., et al. (2001). Comparative analysis of brain proteins from P53-deficient mice by two-dimensional electrophoresi.
Ashcroft, M., and Vousen, K. H. (1999). Regulation of P53 stability.
Barak, Y., et al. (1999). Autistic subjects with comorbid epilepsy: A possible association with viral infections.
Child Psychiatry Hum. Dev
Bauman, M. L., and Kemper, T. L. (1994).
Neuroanatomic Observation of the Brain in Autism. The Neurobiology of Autism
, John Hopkins University, Baltimore, 119–145.
Blatt, G. J., Fitzgerald, C. M., Guptill, J. T., Booker, A. B., Kemper, T. L., and Bauman, M. L. (2001). Density and distribution of hippocampal neurotransmitter receptors in autism: An autoradiographic study.
J. Aut. Dev. Dis
Bubser, M., and Koch, M. (1994). Prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response of rats is reduced by 6-hydroxydopamine lesions of the medial prefrontal cortex.
Crnic, L. S., (2002). The Colorado mental retardation and developmental disabilities research center.
Int. J. Dev. Neurosci
Fatemi, S. H., Halt, A. R., Stary, J. M., Realmuto, G., and Jalali Mousavi, M. (2001a). Reduction in anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 in autistic cerebellum.
Fatemi, S. H., Stary, J. M., Halt, A. R., and Realmuto, G. R. (2001b). Dysregulation of Reelin and Bcl-2 proteins in autistic cerebellum.
J. Aut. Dev. D
Fatemi, S. H., and Halt, A. R. (2001). Altered levels of Bcl-2 and P53 proteins in parietal cortex reflect deranged apoptotic regulation in autism.
Fatemi, S. H., Halt, A. R., Realmuto, G., Kist, D., Earle, J. A., and Thuras, P. (2002a). Reduced Purkinje cell size in autistic cerebellum.
Cell Mol. Neurobiol
Fatemi, S. H., Halt, A. R., Stary, J. M., Kanodia, R., Schulz, S. C., and Realmuto, G. R. (2002b). Glutamic acid decarboxylase 65 and 67 kDa proteins are reduced in autistic parietal and cerebellar cortices.
Gaffney, G. R., et al. (1987). Midsagittal magnetic resonance imaging of autism.
Br. J. Psychiatry
Jarskog. (2000). Cortical Bcl-2 protein—Expression and apoptotic regulation in schizophrenia.
Jepsen, R. H., and VonThaden, K. (2002). The effect of cognitive education on the performance of students with neurological developmental disabilities.
Lee, R. (2002). The effects of differential and lag reinforcement schedules on varied verbal responding by individuals with autism.
J. Appl. Behav. Anal
Lee, M., Martin-Ruiz, C., Graham, A., Court, J., Jaros, E., Perry, R., Iverson, P., Bauman, M., and Perry, E. (2002). Nicotinic receptor adnormalities in the cerebellar cortex in autism.
Levitt, J. G. (1999). Cerebellar vermis lobules VIII-X in autism.
Prog. Neuropsychopharmacol Biol. Psychiatry
Loveland, K. A., et al. (2001). Judgments of social appropriateness by children and adolescents with autism.
J. Autism Dev. Disord
Margolis, R. L. (1997). cDNAs with long CAG trinucleotide repeats from human brain.
Miyashita, T. (1994). Tumor suppressor P53 is a regulator of Bcl-2 and bax gene expression in vitro and in vivo.
Perry, E. K., Lee, M. L., Martin Ruiz, C. M., and Court, J. A. (2001). Cholinergic activity in autism: Abnormalities in the cerebral cortex and basal forebrain.
Am. J. Psychiatry
Piven, J. (1992). Magnetic resonance imaging in autism. Measurement of the cerebellum, pons, and fourth ventricle.
Purcell, A. E., Jeon O. H., Zimmerman, A. W., Blue, M. E., and Pevsner, J. (2001). Postmortem brain abnormalities of the glutamate neurotransmitter system in austim.
Rapin, I. (1997).
Autism. N. Engl. J Med
Reed, J. C. (1997). Double identity for proteins of the Bcl-2 family.
Sharova, L. (2000). Nonspecific stimulation of the maternal immune system II. Effects on gene expression in the fetus.
Veenstra-Vanderweele, J. (2003). Genetics of childhood disorders: XLVI. Autism, part 5: Genetics of autism.
J. Am. Acad. Child Adolesc. Psychiatry
Warren, R. P. (1998). An immunologic theory for the development of some cases of autism.
Wing, L. (1997). The autistic spectrum.
Google Scholar Copyright information
© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003