Identification of molecular biomarkers for multiple sclerosis

Sallyanne C. Fossey, Cindy L. Vnencak-Jones, Nancy J. Olsen, Subramaniam Sriram, Gladys Garrison, Xenquing Deng, Philip S. Crooke, Thomas M. Aune

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Multiple sclerosis is a demyelinating disease of the central nervous system with a presumed autoimmune etiology. Previous microarray analyses identified conserved gene expression signatures in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of patients with autoimmune diseases. We used quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction analysis to identify a minimum number of genes of which transcript levels discriminated multiple sclerosis patients from patients with other chronic diseases and from controls. We used a computer program to search quantitative transcript levels to identify optimum ratios that distinguished among the different categories. A combination of a 4-ratio equation using expression levels of five genes segregated the multiple sclerosis cohort (n = 55) from the control cohort (n = 49) with a sensitivity of 91% and specificity of 98%. When autoimmune and other chronic disease groups were included (n = 78), this discriminator still performed with a sensitivity of 79% and a specificity of 87%. This approach may have diagnostic utility not only for multiple sclerosis but also for other clinically complex autoimmune diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-204
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Molecular Diagnostics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Medicine

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    Fossey, S. C., Vnencak-Jones, C. L., Olsen, N. J., Sriram, S., Garrison, G., Deng, X., Crooke, P. S., & Aune, T. M. (2007). Identification of molecular biomarkers for multiple sclerosis. Journal of Molecular Diagnostics, 9(2), 197-204.