Huang Yiyao and Abdelmagid Abdelgawad Ahmed Gamal andTurchinovich Andrey and Queen Suzanne and Abreu CelinaMonteiro and Zhu Xianming and Batish Mona and Zheng Leiand Witwer Kenneth W
Antiretroviral treatment regimens can effectively control HIV replication and some aspects of disease progression. However, molecular events in end-organ diseases such as central nervous system (CNS) disease are not yet fully understood, and routine eradication of latent reservoirs is not yet in reach. Extracellular vesicle (EV) RNAs have emerged as important participants in HIV disease pathogenesis. Brain tissue-derived EVs (bdEVs) act locally in the source tissue and may indicate molecular mechanisms in HIV CNS pathology. Using brain tissue and bdEVs from the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) model of HIV disease, we profiled messenger RNAs (mRNAs), microRNAs (miRNAs), and circular RNAs (circRNAs), seeking to identify possible networks of RNA interaction in SIV infection and neuroinflammation. Methods: Postmortem occipital cortex tissues were obtained from pigtailed macaques either not infected or dual-inoculated with SIV swarm B670 and clone SIV/17E-Fr. SIV-inoculated groups included samples collected at different time points during acute infection or chronic infection without or with CNS pathology (CP- or CP+). bdEVs were separated and characterized in accordance with international consensus standards. RNAs from bdEVs and source tissue were used for sequencing and qPCR to detect mRNA, miRNA, and circRNA levels. Results: Multiple dysregulated bdEV RNAs, including mRNAs, miRNAs, and circRNAs, were identified in acute and CP+. Most dysregulated mRNAs in bdEVs reflected dysregulation in their source tissues. These mRNAs are disproportionately involved in inflammation and immune responses, especially interferon pathways. For miRNAs, qPCR assays confirmed differential abundance of miR-19a-3p, let-7a-5p, and miR-29a-3p (acute phase), and miR-146a-5p and miR-449a-5p (CP+) in bdEVs. In addition, target prediction suggested that several circRNAs that were differentially abundant in source tissue might be responsible for specific differences in small RNA levels in bdEVs during SIV infection. RNA profiling of bdEVs and source tissues reveals potential regulatory networks in SIV infection and SIV- related CNS pathology.