Journal of Molecular Neuroscience

, Volume 59, Issue 1, pp 18–23 | Cite as

Expression Profile of Long Non-Coding RNAs in Serum of Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

  • Massimo Santoro
  • Viviana Nociti
  • Matteo Lucchini
  • Chiara De Fino
  • Francesco Antonio Losavio
  • Massimiliano Mirabella


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic progressive inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS) that leads to severe neurological disability. There is an interest in potential biomarkers that could provide information predicting disease activity and progression. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been reported to be involved in the pathogenesis of various human disorders, such as oncologic, cardiovascular, and neurodegenerative diseases. No studies have so far explored a potential link between lncRNAs and MS pathology. We screened 84 lncRNAs, involved in autoimmunity and human inflammatory response, in the serum of relapsing-remitting MS (RR-MS) patients (n = 12), age-matched controls (n = 12), and in patients with idiopathic inflammatory myopathy (IIM) (n = 12). We used the following criteria for lncRNAs analysis: fold change >2 and p < 0.05. According to these criteria, by real-time PCR, we identified three lncRNAs up-regulated in RR-MS patients respectively to controls: nuclear paraspeckle assembly transcript 1 (NEAT1), taurine up-regulated 1 (TUG1), and 7SK small nuclear (RN7SK RNA). Literature data showed that NEAT1, TUG1, and RN7SK RNA play an important role in neurodegenerative processes. Our results indicate that these lncRNAs may be involved in MS pathogenesis. Additional experimental data are needed to clarify the molecular mechanisms through which lncRNAs up-regulation may have a role in MS.


Multiple sclerosis Long non-coding RNA Autoimmunity Neurodegeneration 



Multiple sclerosis


Relapsing-remitting MS


Idiopathic inflammatory myopathy


Central nervous system


Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis


Blood–brain barrier


Brain-derived neurotrophic factor


Long non-coding RNA


Nuclear paraspeckle assembly transcript 1


Taurine up-regulated 1


7SK small nuclear


Polycomb repressive complex 2


Splicing factor proline/glutamine-rich


Toll-like receptor three



We thank Drs Luca Mazzitelli, Song Tian, and Samuel J. Rulli (QIAGEN) for the technical assistance and data analysis. This work was supported by grants from the Catholic University and the Italian Ministry of University and Scientific Research.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

The study was performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki ethical principles for medical research involving human subjects. A written informed consent was signed by all subjects before participating to the study.


All authors have made substantial contributions to this work. All the authors have no actual or potential conflict of interest to disclose regarding this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Massimo Santoro
    • 1
  • Viviana Nociti
    • 1
    • 2
  • Matteo Lucchini
    • 2
  • Chiara De Fino
    • 2
  • Francesco Antonio Losavio
    • 2
  • Massimiliano Mirabella
    • 2
  1. 1.Fondazione Don Carlo GnocchiMilanItaly
  2. 2.Department of Geriatrics, Neuroscience and Orthopedics, Institute of NeurologyUCSCRomeItaly

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