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      Loss of a mammalian circular RNA locus causes miRNA deregulation and affects brain function

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          Abstract

          Hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are highly abundant in mammalian brain, with oftentimes conserved expression. Here, we show that the circRNA Cdr1as is massively bound by miR-7 and miR-671 in the human and mouse brain. When the Cdr1as locus was removed from the mouse genome, knockout animals displayed impaired sensorimotor gating, a deficit in the ability to filter out unnecessary information associated with neuropsychiatric disorders. Electrophysiological recordings revealed dysfunctional synaptic transmission. Expression of microRNAs miR-7 and miR-671 was specifically and post-transcriptionally misregulated in all brain regions analyzed. Expression of immediate early genes such as Fos, a direct miR-7 target, was enhanced in Cdr1as-deficient brains, providing a possible molecular link to the behavioral phenotype. Our data indicate an in vivo loss-of-function circRNA phenotype and suggest that interactions between circRNAs and miRNAs are important for normal brain function.

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          Most cited references 30

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          Human studies of prepulse inhibition of startle: normal subjects, patient groups, and pharmacological studies.

          Since the mid-1970s, cross-species translational studies of prepulse inhibition (PPI) have increased at an astounding pace as the value of this neurobiologically informative measure has been optimized. PPI occurs when a relatively weak sensory event (the prepulse) is presented 30-500 ms before a strong startle-inducing stimulus, and reduces the magnitude of the startle response. In humans, PPI occurs in a robust, predictable manner when the prepulse and startling stimuli occur in either the same or different modalities (acoustic, visual, or cutaneous). This review covers three areas of interest in human PPI studies. First, we review the normal influences on PPI related to the underlying construct of sensori- (prepulse) motor (startle reflex) gating. Second, we review PPI studies in psychopathological disorders that form a family of gating disorders. Third, we review the relatively limited but interesting and rapidly expanding literature on pharmacological influences on PPI in humans. All studies identified by a computerized literature search that addressed the three topics of this review were compiled and evaluated. The principal studies were summarized in appropriate tables. The major influences on PPI as a measure of sensorimotor gating can be grouped into 11 domains. Most of these domains are similar across species, supporting the value of PPI studies in translational comparisons across species. The most prominent literature describing deficits in PPI in psychiatrically defined groups features schizophrenia-spectrum patients and their clinically unaffected relatives. These findings support the use of PPI as an endophenotype in genetic studies. Additional groups of psychopathologically disordered patients with neuropathology involving cortico-striato-pallido-pontine circuits exhibit poor gating of motor, sensory, or cognitive information and corresponding PPI deficits. These groups include patients with obsessive compulsive disorder, Tourette's syndrome, blepharospasm, temporal lobe epilepsy with psychosis, enuresis, and perhaps posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Several pharmacological manipulations have been examined for their effects on PPI in healthy human subjects. In some cases, the alterations in PPI produced by these drugs in animals correspond to similar effects in humans. Specifically, dopamine agonists disrupt and nicotine increases PPI in at least some human studies. With some other compounds, however, the effects seen in humans appear to differ from those reported in animals. For example, the PPI-increasing effects of the glutamate antagonist ketamine and the serotonin releaser MDMA in humans are opposite to the PPI-disruptive effects of these compounds in rodents. Considerable evidence supports a high degree of homology between measures of PPI in rodents and humans, consistent with the use of PPI as a cross-species measure of sensorimotor gating. Multiple investigations of PPI using a variety of methods and parameters confirm that deficits in PPI are evident in schizophrenia-spectrum patients and in certain other disorders in which gating mechanisms are disturbed. In contrast to the extensive literature on clinical populations, much more work is required to clarify the degree of correspondence between pharmacological effects on PPI in healthy humans and those reported in animals.
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            Definition of the readily releasable pool of vesicles at hippocampal synapses.

            A readily releasable pool of quanta, tentatively identified with docked synaptic vesicles, has been defined by analysis of the neurotransmitter release caused by application of hypertonic solutions. The goal of this work is to determine the relationship of this functionally defined readily releasable pool to the one drawn upon by action potential-evoked release. We find that hypertonic solutions do not act through changes in intracellular calcium. Since the release produced by action potentials and hypertonic solutions varies in parallel as the pool size is changed, we conclude that the same pool is shared by both mechanisms. This conclusion, taken together with other observations in the literature, means that the synaptic release probability depends on the size of the readily releasable pool.
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              Comprehensive comparative analysis of RNA sequencing methods for degraded or low input samples

              RNA-Seq is an effective method to study the transcriptome, but can be difficult to apply to scarce or degraded RNA from fixed clinical samples, rare cell populations, or cadavers. Recent studies have proposed several methods for RNA-Seq of low quality and/or low quantity samples, but their relative merits have not been systematically analyzed. Here, we compare five such methods using metrics relevant to transcriptome annotation, transcript discovery, and gene expression. Using a single human RNA sample, we constructed and sequenced ten libraries with these methods and two control libraries. We find that the RNase H method performed best for low quality RNA, and confirmed this with actual degraded samples. RNase H can even effectively replace oligo (dT) based methods for standard RNA-Seq. SMART and NuGEN had distinct strengths for low quantity RNA. Our analysis allows biologists to select the most suitable methods and provides a benchmark for future method development.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Science
                Science
                American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
                0036-8075
                1095-9203
                August 2017
                :
                :
                : eaam8526
                Article
                10.1126/science.aam8526
                28798046

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