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Aging Cell. 2018 May 24:e12785. doi: 10.1111/acel.12785. [Epub ahead of print]

Extracellular RNA profiles with human age.

Author information

1
Department of Biology, Morgan State University, Baltimore, Maryland.
2
Laboratory of Epidemiology and Population Science, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, Maryland.
3
Laboratory of Genetics and Genomics, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, Maryland.
4
Translational Gerontology Branch, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, Maryland.

Abstract

Circulating extracellular RNAs (exRNAs) are potential biomarkers of disease. We thus hypothesized that age-related changes in exRNAs can identify age-related processes. We profiled both large and small RNAs in human serum to investigate changes associated with normal aging. exRNA was sequenced in 13 young (30-32 years) and 10 old (80-85 years) African American women to identify all RNA transcripts present in serum. We identified age-related differences in several RNA biotypes, including mitochondrial transfer RNAs, mitochondrial ribosomal RNA, and unprocessed pseudogenes. Age-related differences in unique RNA transcripts were further validated in an expanded cohort. Pathway analysis revealed that EIF2 signaling, oxidative phosphorylation, and mitochondrial dysfunction were among the top pathways shared between young and old. Protein interaction networks revealed distinct clusters of functionally-related protein-coding genes in both age groups. These data provide timely and relevant insight into the exRNA repertoire in serum and its change with aging.

KEYWORDS:

aging; circular RNA; exRNA; microRNA; ncRNA; women

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