Author

Tavia N. Hall

Year of Publication

Spring 2016

Season of Publication

Spring

Degree Type

Honors Thesis

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Biology

Degree Name

Honors in the Major

First Advisor

Dr. Judith D. Ochrietor

Second Advisor

Dr. Cliff Ross

Abstract

The Immunoglobulin Superfamily (IgSF) is a subset of cellular adhesion molecules that are involved in regulation of a variety of cellular processes throughout the body. The purpose of this study was to quantify and compare the expression levels of the Basigin subset of the IgSF in the brain throughout the mouse life-span. This study is the first to compare the expression of Basigin, Embigin, and Neuroplastin, which form the Basigin subset of the IgSF. The expression levels of MCT-1, which is known to associate with Basigin in the neural retina, were also quantified to identify its role in brain tissue. Mouse brains were obtained using an accepted protocol and RNA was isolated for use in quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (q-RT-PCR) using primer sets specific for Basigin, Neuroplastin gene products, Embigin, and MCT-1. The values obtained were normalized to 18s rRNA and standard curves were generated to extrapolate the quantity of RNA present in each sample. Neuroplastin had the highest level of expression of the members of the Basigin subset of the IgSF over time. This suggests that Neuroplastin gene products have a more prominent role in the structure and function of the mouse brain than the other two members of the Basigin subset. Although expression of Neuroplastin was relatively high in adult brain tissue, an exponential pattern of decreasing expression over time was observed. It is possible that the decrease in Neuroplastin expression observed in the brain tissue of aged individuals is associated with neural degeneration as a result of aging.

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Biology Commons

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