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Intron retention is a mechanism of post-transcriptional gene regulation, including genes involved in erythropoiesis. Erythropoietin (EPO) is a hormone without evidence of intracellular vesicle storage that regulates erythropoiesis. We hypothesize that EPO uses intron retention as a mechanism of post-transcriptional regulation in response to hypoxia and ischemia. Cell models of hypoxia and ischemia for kidney, liver, and brain cells were examined for intron retention by real time quantitative PCR. EPO expression increased in most cells except for blood brain barrier and liver cells. The intron retained transcript ratio decreased in brain cells, except for Astrocytes, but showed no change in kidney or liver after 24 h of ischemia. The shift in intron ratio was maintained when using poly (A) enriched cDNA, suggesting that intron retention is not due to immature transcripts. The expression of EPO was elevated at variable time points amongst cell models with the intron ratio also changing over a time course of 2 to 16 h after ischemia. We conclude that intron retention is a mechanism regulating EPO expression in response to ischemia in a tissue specific manner. Copyright © 2023. Published by Elsevier B.V.


Victoria Northrup, Lester J Perez, Brittany A Edgett, Tobias Karakach, Jeremy A Simpson, Keith R Brunt. Intron retention is a mechanism of erythropoietin regulation in brain cell models. Gene. 2024 Mar 10;898:148099

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PMID: 38128788

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