Transcriptional analysis of islets of Langerhans from organ donors of different ages.

Seiron P, Stenwall A, Hedin A, Granlund L, Esguerra JLS, Volkov P, Renström E, Korsgren O, Lundberg M, Skog O

PLoS ONE 16 (3) e0247888 [2021-03-12; online 2021-03-12]

Insulin secretion is impaired with increasing age. In this study, we aimed to determine whether aging induces specific transcriptional changes in human islets. Laser capture microdissection was used to extract pancreatic islet tissue from 37 deceased organ donors aged 1-81 years. The transcriptomes of the extracted islets were analysed using Ion AmpliSeq sequencing. 346 genes that co-vary significantly with age were found. There was an increased transcription of genes linked to senescence, and several aspects of the cell cycle machinery were downregulated with increasing age. We detected numerous genes not linked to aging in previous studies likely because earlier studies analysed islet cells isolated by enzymatic digestion which might affect the islet transcriptome. Among the novel genes demonstrated to correlate with age, we found an upregulation of SPP1 encoding osteopontin. In beta cells, osteopontin has been seen to be protective against both cytotoxicity and hyperglycaemia. In summary, we present a transcriptional profile of aging in human islets and identify genes that could affect disease course in diabetes.

NGI Uppsala (Uppsala Genome Center) [Service]

National Genomics Infrastructure [Service]

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PubMed 33711030

DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0247888

Crossref 10.1371/journal.pone.0247888

pii: PONE-D-20-36482
pmc: PMC7954335