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Integrated Proteomic and Phosphoproteomic Analysis of the Hippocampus in a Mouse Model of Early Life Inflammation.

Neuroimmunomodulation 2023 January 5
INTRODUCTION: Inflammation in early life is a risk factor for the development of neuropsychiatric diseases later in adolescence and adulthood, yet the underlying mechanism remains elusive. In the present study, we performed an integrated proteomic and phosphoproteomic analysis of the hippocampus to identify potential molecular mechanisms of early life inflammation-induced cognitive impairment.

METHODS: Both female and male mice received a single intraperitoneal injection of 100 μg/kg lipopolysaccharide (LPS) on postnatal day 10 (P10). Behavioral tests, including open field, elevated plus-maze, and Y-maze tests, were performed on P39, P40, and P41, respectively. After behavioral tests, male mice were sacrificed. The whole brain tissues and the hippocampi were harvested on P42 for proteomic, phosphoproteomic, Western blot, and Golgi staining.

RESULTS: Early life LPS exposure induced cognitive impairment in male mice but not in female mice, as assessed by the Y-maze test. Therefore, following biochemical tests were conducted on male mice. By proteomic analysis, 13 proteins in LPS group exhibited differential expression. Among these, 9 proteins were upregulated and 4 proteins were downregulated. For phosphoproteomic analysis, a total of 518 phosphopeptides were identified, of which 316 phosphopeptides were upregulated and 202 phosphopeptides were downregulated in the LPS group compared with the control group. Furthermore, KEGG analysis indicated that early life LPS exposure affected the glutamatergic synapse and neuroactive ligand-receptor interaction, which were associated with synaptic function and energy metabolism. Increased level of brain protein i3 (Bri3), decreased levels of PSD-95 and mGLUR5, and dendritic spine loss after early life LPS exposure further confirmed the findings of proteomic and phosphoproteomic analysis.

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings demonstrated that neuroinflammation and impaired synapse may be involved in early life inflammation-induced cognitive impairment. Future studies are required to confirm our preliminary results.

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