Inflammatory and immune responses are essential and dynamic biological processes that protect the body against acute and chronic adverse stimuli. While conventional protein markers have been used to evaluate systemic inflammatory response, the immunological response to stimulation is complex and involves modulation of a large set of genes and interacting signalling pathways of innate and adaptive immune systems. There is a need for a non-invasive tool that can comprehensively evaluate and monitor molecular dysregulations associated with inflammatory and immune responses in circulation and in inaccessible solid organs. Here we utilized cell-free messenger RNA (cf-mRNA) RNA-Seq whole transcriptome profiling and computational biology to temporally assess lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced and JAK inhibitor modulated inflammatory and immune responses in mouse plasma samples. Cf-mRNA profiling displayed a pattern of systemic immune responses elicited by LPS and dysregulation of associated pathways. Moreover, attenuation of several inflammatory pathways, including STAT and interferon pathways, were observed following the treatment of JAK inhibitor. We further identified the dysregulation of liver-specific transcripts in cf-mRNA which reflected changes in the gene-expression pattern in this generally inaccessible biological compartment. Using a preclinical mouse model, we demonstrated the potential of plasma cf-mRNA profiling for systemic and organ-specific characterization of drug-induced molecular alterations that are associated with inflammatory and immune responses. Molecular Stethoscope.

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