Maternal Diabetes Deregulates the Expression of Mecp2 via miR-26b-5p in Mouse Embryonic Neural Stem Cells

Sukanya Shyamasundar, Seshadri Ramya, Deepika Kandilya, Dinesh Kumar Srinivasan, Boon Huat Bay, Suraiya Anjum Ansari, S. Thameem Dheen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Maternal diabetes has been associated with a greater risk of neurodevelopmental disorders in offspring. It has been established that hyperglycemia alters the expression of genes and microRNAs (miRNAs) regulating the fate of neural stem cells (NSCs) during brain development. In this study, the expression of methyl-CpG-binding protein-2 (Mecp2), a global chromatin organizer and a crucial regulator of synaptic proteins, was analyzed in NSCs obtained from the forebrain of embryos of diabetic mice. Mecp2 was significantly downregulated in NSCs derived from embryos of diabetic mice when compared to controls. miRNA target prediction revealed that the miR-26 family could regulate the expression of Mecp2, and further validation confirmed that Mecp2 is a target of miR-26b-5p. Knockdown of Mecp2 or overexpression of miR-26b-5p altered the expression of tau protein and other synaptic proteins, suggesting that miR-26b-5p alters neurite outgrowth and synaptogenesis via Mecp2. This study revealed that maternal diabetes upregulates the expression of miR-26b-5p in NSCs, resulting in downregulation of its target, Mecp2, which in turn perturbs neurite outgrowth and expression of synaptic proteins. Overall, hyperglycemia dysregulates synaptogenesis that may manifest as neurodevelopmental disorders in offspring from diabetic pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1516
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023


  • maternal hyperglycemia
  • microRNA
  • neurodevelopmental disorders
  • synapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology


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