Non-laser capture microscopy approach for the micro dissection of discrete mouse brain regions for total RNA isolation and downstream next-generation sequencing and gene expression profiling

Norman Atkins*, Charlie M. Miller, Joseph R. Owens, Fred W. Turek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

As technological platforms, approaches such as next-generation sequencing, micro array, and qRT-PCR have great promise for expanding our understanding of the breadth of molecular regulation. Newer approaches such as high-resolution RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) provides new and expansive information about tissue- or state-specific expression such as relative transcript levels, alternative splicing, and micro RNAs. Prospects for employing the RNA-Seq method in comparative whole transcriptome profiling within discrete tissues or between phenotypically distinct groups of individuals affords new avenues for elucidating molecular mechanisms involved in both normal and abnormal physiological states. Recently, whole transcriptome profiling has been performed on human brain tissue, identifying gene expression differences associated with disease progression. However, the use of next-generation sequencing has yet to be more widely integrated into mammalian studies. Gene expression studies in mouse models have reported distinct profiles within various brain nuclei using laser capture microscopy (LCM) for sample excision. While LCM affords sample collection with single-cell and discrete brain region precision, the relatively low total RNA yields from the LCM approach can be prohibitive to RNA-Seq and other profiling approaches in mouse brain tissues and may require sub-optimal sample amplification steps. Here, a protocol is presented for micro dissection and total RNA extraction from discrete mouse brain regions. Set-diameter tissue corers are used to isolate 13 tissues from 750-μm serial coronal sections of an individual mouse brain. Tissue micropunch samples are immediately frozen and archived. Total RNA is obtained from the samples using magnetic bead-enabled total RNA isolation technology. Resulting RNA samples have adequate yield and quality for use in downstream expression profiling. This microdissection strategy provides a viable option to existing sample collection strategies for obtaining total RNA from discrete brain regions, opening possibilities for new gene expression discoveries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere3125
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number57
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011

Keywords

  • Brain
  • Expression
  • Gene
  • Issue 57
  • Microarray
  • Microdissection
  • Mouse
  • Neuroscience
  • RNA-seq
  • RT-qPCR
  • Rna
  • Total RNA
  • Transcriptome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

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