Differential gene expressions in the lacrimal gland during development and onset of keratoconjunctivitis sicca in Sjögren's syndrome (SJS)-like disease of the C57BL/6.NOD-Aec1Aec2 mouse

Cuong Q. Nguyen, Ashok Sharma, Jin-Xiong She, Richard A. McIndoe, Ammon B. Peck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Recently, we reported development of the C57BL/6.NOD-Aec1Aec2 mouse carrying two genetic intervals derived from the NOD mouse. These two genetic regions confer Sjögren's syndrome (SjS)-like disease in SjS-non-susceptible C57BL/6 mice. In an attempt to define the molecular bases underlying onset of dacryoadenitis and subsequently keratoconjunctivitis sicca (or xerophthalmia) in the C57BL/6.NOD-Aec1Aec2 mouse model, we have carried out a study utilizing microarray technology. Using oligonucleotide microarrays, gene expression profiles of lacrimal glands at 4, 8, 12, 16 and 20 weeks of age were generated for C57BL/6.NOD-Aec1Aec2 male mice. Analyses using Linear Models for Microarray Analysis package and B-statistics, 552 genes were identified as being differentially expressed (adjusted p-value <0.01 and B <1.5) during the development of SjS-like disease. These 552 genes could be arranged into four clusters, with each cluster defining a unique pattern of temporal expression, while the individual genes within each cluster could be grouped according to related function. Using a pair-wise analysis, temporal changes in gene expressions provided profiles indicating that individual genes were differentially expressed at specific time points during development of SjS. In addition, multiple genes that have been reported to show, either in humans or mouse models, an association with autoimmunity and/or SjS, e.g., ApoE, Baff, Clu, Ctla4, Fas/Fasl, Irf5, Lyzs, Nfkb, Socs3, Stat4, Tap2, Tgfβ1, Tnfa, and Vcam1 were also found to exhibit differential expressions, both quantitatively and temporally. Selecting a few families of genes, e.g., cystatins, cathepsins, metalloproteinases, lipocalins, complement, kallikreins, carbonic anhydrases and tumor necrosis factors, it was noted that only a limited number of family members showed differential expressions, suggesting a restricted glandular expression. Utilizing these genes, pathways of inter-reactive genes have been constructed for apoptosis and fatty acid homeostasis, leading to modeling of possible underlying events inducing disease. Thus, these different approaches to analyze microarray data permit identification of multiple sets of genes of interest whose expressions and expression profiles may correlate with molecular mechanisms, signaling pathways and/or immunological processes involved in the development and onset of SjS in this mouse model, thereby providing new insight into the underlying cause or regulation of this disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)398-409
Number of pages12
JournalExperimental eye research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2009


  • Sjögren's syndrome
  • animal model
  • biomarker
  • keratoconjunctivitis sicca
  • microarray

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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