Translatomic database of cortical astroglia across male and female mouse development reveals two distinct developmental phenotypes

Gareth M. Rurak, Stephanie Simard, Amanda Van Geel, John Stead, Barbara Woodside, Gianfilippo Coppola, Natalina Salmaso

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Jun 25, 2019
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Received Date: 13th June 19

Astroglial cells are emerging as key players in the development and homeostatic maintenance of neurons and neuronal networks. Astroglial cell functions are critical to neuronal migration and maturation, myelination, and synapse dynamics, however little is known about astroglial phenotypic changes over development. Furthermore, astroglial cells express steroid hormone receptors and show rapid responses to hormonal manipulations, however, despite important sex differences in telencephalic regions such as the cortex and hippocampus few studies have examined sex differences in astroglial cells in development and outside of the hypothalamus and amygdala. To phenotype cortical astroglial cells across postnatal development while considering potential sex differences, we used translating ribosome affinity purification together with RNAsequencing (TRAPseq) and immunohistochemistry to phenotype the entire astroglial translatome in males and females at key developmental time points: P1, P4, P7, P14, P35 and in adulthood. We found that although astroglia show few sex differences in adulthood, they show significant sex differences in developmental gene expression patterns between p7 and P35, that suggest sex differences in developmental functions. We also found two distinctive, non-overlapping, astroglial phenotypes between early (P1-P7) and late development (P14-Adult). Together these data clearly delineate and phenotype astroglia across development and identify sex differences in astroglial developmental programs that could have an important impact on the construction and maintenance of neuronal networks and related behavioural phenotypes.

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This is an abstract of a preprint hosted on an independent third party site. It has not been peer reviewed but is currently under consideration at Nature Communications.

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