Lysosomal storage disorders (LSDs) are a group of about 50 genetic metabolic disorders, mainly affecting children, sharing the inability to degrade specific endolysosomal substrates. This results in failure of cellular functions in many organs, including brain that in most patients may go through progressive neurodegeneration. In this study, we analyzed the brain of the mouse model for Hunter syndrome, a LSD mostly presenting with neurological involvement. Whole transcriptome analysis of the cerebral cortex and midbrain/diencephalon/hippocampus areas was performed through RNA-seq. Genes known to be involved in several neurological functions showed a significant differential expression in the animal model for the disease compared to wild type. Among the pathways altered in both areas, axon guidance, calcium homeostasis, synapse and neuroactive ligand–receptor interaction, circadian rhythm, neuroinflammation and Wnt signaling were the most significant. Application of RNA sequencing to dissect pathogenic alterations of complex syndromes allows to photograph perturbations, both determining and determined by these disorders, which could simultaneously occur in several metabolic and biochemical pathways. Results also emphasize the common, altered pathways between neurodegenerative disorders affecting elderly and those associated with pediatric diseases of genetic origin, perhaps pointing out a general common course for neurodegeneration, independent from the primary triggering cause.
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