Nanostring-based identification of the gene expression profile in trigger finger samples

KOLHE RAVINDRA, Umar Ghilzai, Ashis K. Mondal, Chetan Pundkar, Pankaj Ahluwalia, Nikhil S. Sahajpal, Jie Chen, Carlos M. Isales, Mark Fulcher, Sadanand Fulzele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Trigger finger is a common yet vastly understudied fibroproliferative hand pathology, severely affecting patients’ quality of life. Consistent trauma due to inadequate positioning within the afflicted finger’s tendon/pulley system leads to cellular dysregulation and eventual fibrosis. While the genetic characteristics of the fibrotic tissue in the trigger finger have been studied, the pathways that govern the initiation and propagation of fibrosis are still unknown. The complete gene expression profile of the trigger finger has never been explored. Our study has used the Nanostring nCounter gene expression assay to investigate the molecular signaling involved in trigger finger pathogenesis. We collected samples from patients undergoing trigger finger (n = 4) release surgery and compared the gene expression to carpal tunnel tissue (n = 4). Nanostring nCounter analysis identified 165 genes that were differentially regulated; 145 of these genes were upregulated, whereas 20 genes were downregulated. We found that several collagen genes were significantly upregulated, and a regulatory matrix metalloproteinase (MMP), MMP-3, was downregulated. Bioinformatic analysis revealed that several known signaling pathways were dysregulated, such as the TGF-β1 and Wnt signaling pathways. We also found several novel signaling pathways (e.g., PI3K, MAPK, JAK-STAT, and Notch) differentially regulated in trigger finger. The outcome of our study helps in understanding the molecular signaling pathway involved in the pathogenesis of the trigger finger.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1592
JournalHealthcare (Switzerland)
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2021


  • Gene expression
  • Nanostring
  • Pain
  • Trigger finger

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Leadership and Management
  • Health Policy
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management


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