Previous studies have identified several dysregulated microRNAs in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC); however, to date there are no ex vivo analyses comparing expression levels of these regulatory molecules in esophageal squamous cell tumors versus patient-matched normal epithelium. We describe here a technical strategy to evaluate microRNAs in normal esophageal basal cells (NB), normal esophageal differentiated cells (ND), and tumor cells (T). Laser capture microdissection was used to procure target populations from five cases and 18 ESCC-associated microRNAs were measured by RT-qPCR. Five microRNAs (miR-25, miR-106b, miR-21, miR-203, and miR-145) demonstrated consistent differential expression in at least one of the three comparisons: T vs. NB, T vs. ND, or NB vs. ND. The potential regulatory role of the microRNAs in ESCC was further evaluated by correlating their expression with a matched mRNA dataset, which included the same five cases and cell populations. In conclusion, the present work demonstrates the feasibility of studying microRNA levels in precisely dissected cell populations from clinical samples, and sheds light on the molecular mechanisms associated with ESCC.
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; laser capture microdissection; microRNA; basal layer; differentiated layer; miR-25; miR-106b; miR-21; miR-203; miR-145
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is a common malignancy and one of the more difficult diseases to diagnose in Japan due to its poor prognosis. MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNAs of 21–23 nucleotides that regulate gene expression. MicroRNA-34b (miR-34b) has been reported to be overexpressed in various types of cancer. However, its role in ESCC has yet to be extensively studied. The present study investigated the expression of miR-34b in 88 ESCC patients. The miR-34b expression in ESCC was significantly higher than that in the corresponding normal esophageal mucosa. It was more highly expressed in tumors with more advanced stages. However, its expression did not correlate with the p53 status. Transfection of anti-miR-34b to the ESCC cells suppressed cell growth in vitro. These results suggest an oncogenic role of miR in ESCC.
microRNA-34b; esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; MTT assay
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), the predominant histological subtype of esophageal cancer, is characterized by high mortality. Previous work identified important mRNA expression differences between normal and tumor cells; however, to date there are limited ex vivo studies examining expression changes occurring during normal esophageal squamous cell differentiation versus those associated with tumorigenesis. In this study, we used a unique tissue microdissection strategy and microarrays to measure gene expression profiles associated with cell differentiation versus tumorigenesis in twelve cases of patient-matched normal basal squamous epithelial cells (NB), normal differentiated squamous epithelium (ND), and squamous cell cancer. Class comparison and pathway analysis were used to compare NB versus tumor in a search for unique therapeutic targets.
As a first step towards this goal, gene expression profiles and pathways were evaluated. Overall, ND expression patterns were markedly different from NB and tumor; whereas, tumor and NB were more closely related. Tumor showed a general decrease in differentially expressed genes relative to NB as opposed to ND that exhibited the opposite trend. FSH and IgG networks were most highly dysregulated in normal differentiation and tumorigenesis, respectively. DNA repair pathways were generally elevated in NB and tumor relative to ND indicating involvement in both normal and pathological growth. PDGF signaling pathway and 12 individual genes unique to the tumor/NB comparison were identified as therapeutic targets, and 10 associated ESCC gene-drug pairs were identified. We further examined the protein expression level and the distribution patterns of four genes: ODC1, POSTN, ASPA and IGF2BP3. Ultimately, three genes (ODC1, POSTN, ASPA) were verified to be dysregulated in the same pattern at both the mRNA and protein levels.
These data reveal insight into genes and molecular pathways mediating ESCC development and provide information potentially useful in designing novel therapeutic interventions for this tumor type.
This study identified significantly down-regulated microRNAs (miRs) specific for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cells. Total RNA was extracted from ESCC cell lines (OE21 and TE10) and a non-malignant human esophageal squamous cell line (Het1A), and subjected to microarray analysis. Expression levels of miRs that showed significant down-regulation in ESCC cells compared to Het1A cells based on the comprehensive analysis were analyzed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Among the significantly down-regulated miRs, miR-10a expression levels in the five ESCC cell lines examined were significantly lower than in Het1A and the esophageal adenocarcinoma cells. Since miR-10a is a specific miR in ESCC, its clinical relevance was examined. Using ESCC tumor samples and non-cancerous tissue obtained endoscopically, the involvement of miR-10a in the clinicopathological findings was examined. MiR-10a expression was comparably down-regulated in the tumors of high-grade intraepithelial neoplasm and non-invasive ESCC, while the expression levels were elevated in the invasive ESCC tumors. Treatment with a demethylating agent, 5-aza-2′-deoxycytidine, restored miR-10a expression in OE21 cells. Only a modest additive or synergistic effect was observed in the presence of a histone deacetylase inhibitor, trichostatin A. These results imply that miR-10a may be differentially expressed in ESCC cells and may be involved in ESCC development and progression. The unique epigenetic regulation of miR-10a expression can be mediated via hypermethylation of the CpG islands proximal to its gene locus, at least in certain ESCC cells.
microRNA; microRNA 10a; esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; DNA methylation
MicroRNAs (miRNAs), 18–24 nt non-coding RNAs, are thought to play important roles in cell proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, and development. Recent studies suggest that some of the known microRNAs map to a single genomic locale within a single polycistronic transcript. But the roles of the cluster remain to be known. In order to understand the role and mechanism of a cluster of miR-143 and miR-145 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), the association of mature miR-143 and miR-145 expression with the risk for esophageal cancer was evaluated in ESCC patients with a case-control study, and target protein regulated by mature miRNA was analyzed in ESCC cell lines with 3′UTR luciferase reporter assay. The expression levels of miR-143 and miR-145 were determined in 110 pairs of esophageal cancer tissues and adjacent normal tissues using real-time reverse transcription PCR. The relative expression of miR-143 and miR-145 were statistically different between cancer tissues and matched controls. The combined expression of miR-143 and miR-145 was significantly associated with the risk for esophageal cancer. Meanwhile, the reduced expression of two miRNAs in tumor patient was supposed to have a trend of lymph node metastases. The co-expression pattern of miR-143 and miR-145 was analyzed with Pearson correlation. It showed a significant correlation between these two miRNAs expression both in tissues and tumor cell lines. 3′UTR luciferase reporter assay indicated that Fascin Homolog 1 (FSCN1) could be co-regulated by miR-143 and miR-145. The protein level of FSCN1 showed no significant linear correlation with miR-143 and miR-145 expression in ESCC cell lines with Western blotting analysis. In conclusion, since miR-143 and miR-145 could regulate oncogenic FSCN1 and take part in the modulation of metastases, the result suggested the combination variable of miR-143 and miR-145 as a potential biomarker for earlier diagnosis and prognosis of esophageal cancer.
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) is often diagnosed at later stages until they are incurable. MicroRNA (miR) is a small, non-coding RNA that negatively regulates gene expression mainly via translational repression. Accumulating evidence indicates that deregulation of miR is associated with human malignancies including ESCC. The aim of this study was to identify miR that could be specifically expressed and exert distinct biological actions in ESCC.
Total RNA was extracted from ESCC cell lines, OE21 and TE10, and a non-malignant human esophageal squamous cell line, Het-1A, and subjected to microarray analysis. Expression levels of miR that showed significant differences between the 2 ESCC and Het-1A cells based on the comprehensive analysis were analyzed by the quantitative reverse transcriptase (RT)-PCR method. Then, functional analyses, including cellular proliferation, apoptosis and Matrigel invasion and the wound healing assay, for the specific miR were conducted. Using ESCC tumor samples and paired surrounding non-cancerous tissue obtained endoscopically, the association with histopathological differentiation was examined with quantitative RT-PCR.
Based on the miR microarray analysis, there were 14 miRs that showed significant differences (more than 2-fold) in expression between the 2 ESCC cells and non-malignant Het-1A. Among the significantly altered miRs, miR-205 expression levels were exclusively higher in 5 ESCC cell lines examined than any other types of malignant cell lines and Het-1A. Thus, miR-205 could be a specific miR in ESCC. Modulation of miR-205 expression by transfection with its precursor or anti-miR-205 inhibitor did not affect ESCC cell proliferation and apoptosis, but miR-205 was found to be involved in cell invasion and migration. Western blot revealed that knockdown of miR-205 expression in ESCC cells substantially enhanced expression of zinc finger E-box binding homeobox 2, accompanied by reduction of E-cadherin, a regulator of epithelial mesenchymal transition. The miR-205 expression levels were not associated with histological differentiation of human ESCC.
These results imply that miR-205 is an ESCC-specific miR that exerts tumor-suppressive activities with EMT inhibition by targeting ZEB2.
In a recent study, a unique gene expression signature was observed when comparing esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) epithelial cells to normal esophageal epithelial cells using laser capture microdissection (LCM) and cDNA microarray technology. To validate the expression of several intriguing genes from that study (KRT17, cornulin, CD44, and EpCAM), we employed two new technologies, expression microdissection (xMD) for high-throughput microdissection facilitating protein analysis and RNAscope for the evaluation of low abundant transcripts in situ. For protein measurements, xMD technology was utilized to specifically procure sufficient tumor and normal epithelium from frozen human tissue for immunoblot analysis of KRT17 (CK17) and cornulin. A novel in situ hybridization method (RNAscope) was used to determine the transcript level of two relatively low expressed genes, CD44 and EpCAM in both individual formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue sections and in an ESCC tissue microarray (TMA). The results successfully confirmed the initial expression pattern observed for all four genes, potentially implicating them in the pathogenesis of ESCC. Additionally, the study provides important methodological information on the overall process of candidate gene validation.
Expression microdissection; esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; RNAscope; immunoblot
Esophageal squamous cell carcinomas (ESCC) are usually asymptomatic and go undetected until they are incurable. Cytological screening is one strategy to detect ESCC at an early stage and has shown promise in previous studies, although improvement in sensitivity and specificity are needed. Proteases modulate cancer progression by facilitating tumor invasion and metastasis. In the current study, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) were studied in a search for new early detection markers for ESCC.
Protein expression levels of MMPs were measured using zymography in 24 cases of paired normal esophagus and ESCC, and in the tumor-associated stroma and tumor epithelium in one sample after laser capture microdissection (LCM). MMP-3 and MMP-10 transcripts in both the epithelium and stroma in five cases were further analyzed by quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR).
Gelatin zymography showed bands corresponding in size to MMP-2, MMP-3, MMP-9, and MMP-10 enzymes in each of the 24 cancer cases. MMP levels tended to be higher in tumors than paired normal tissue; however, only the 45 kDa band that corresponds to the activated form of MMP-3 and MMP-10 was strongly expressed in all 24 tumors with little or no expression in the paired normal foci. LCM-based analysis showed the 45 kDA band to be present in both the stromal and epithelial components of the tumor microenvironment, and that MMP-3 and MMP-10 mRNA levels were higher in tumors than paired normal tissues for each compartment.
Increased levels of MMPs occur in ESCC suggesting their up-regulation is important in esophageal tumorigenesis. The up-regulated gene products have the potential to serve as early detection markers in the clinic.
The enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) was found to be overexpressed and associated with tumor metastasis in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). On the other hand, it was reported that miR-26a, miR-98, miR-101, miR-124, miR-138 and miR-214 could inhibit the expression of EZH2 in some tumors. However, the role of miRNAs in the regulation of EZH2 expression in human ESCC has not been documented. The aim of this study was to determine the role of these miRNAs in the regulation of tumor metastasis via EZH2 overexpression in human ESCC.
Methods and results
The expression of these miRNAs and EZH2 mRNA were examined by qPCR and the expression of EZH2 protein was detected by western blot. The role of these miRNAs in migration and invasion was studied in ESCC cell line (Eca109) transfected with miRNA mimics or cotransfected with miRNA mimics and pcDNA-EZH2 plasmid (without the 3’-UTR of EZH2). Through clinical investigation, we found that miR-98 and miR-214 expression was significantly lower in ESCC tissues than in matched normal tissues, and the expression level of miR-98 and miR-214 was inversely correlated to EZH2 protein expression and the clinical features such as pathological grade, tumor stage and lymph node metastasis in ESCC. In Eca109 cells, overexpression of miR-98 and miR-214 significantly inhibited the migration and invasion of ESCC cells, which was reversed by transfection of EZH2.
These findings suggest that decreased expression of miR-98 and miR-214 might promote metastasis of human ESCC by inducing accumulation of EZH2 protein.
MiR-98; MiR-214; EZH2; ESCC; Migration; Invasion
Background and aims
The intestine exhibits profound diurnal rhythms in function and morphology, in part due to changes in enterocyte proliferation. The regulatory mechanisms behind these rhythms remain largely unknown. We hypothesized that microRNAs are involved in mediating these rhythms, and studied the role of microRNAs specifically in modulating intestinal proliferation.
Diurnal rhythmicity of microRNAs in rat jejunum was analyzed by microarrays and validated by qPCR. Temporal expression of diurnally rhythmic mir-16 was further quantified in intestinal crypts, villi, and smooth muscle using laser capture microdissection and qPCR. Morphological changes in rat jejunum were assessed by histology and proliferation by immunostaining for bromodeoxyuridine. In IEC-6 cells stably overexpressing mir-16, proliferation was assessed by cell counting and MTS assay, cell cycle progression and apoptosis by flow cytometry, and cell cycle gene expression by qPCR and immunoblotting.
mir-16 peaked 6 hours after light onset (HALO 6) with diurnal changes restricted to crypts. Crypt depth and villus height peaked at HALO 13-14 in antiphase to mir-16. Overexpression of mir-16 in IEC-6 cells suppressed specific G1/S regulators (Cyclins D1-3, Cyclin E1 and Cyclin-dependent kinase 6) and produced G1 arrest. Protein expression of these genes exhibited diurnal rhythmicity in rat jejunum, peaking between HALO 11-17 in antiphase to mir-16.
This is the first report of circadian rhythmicity of specific microRNAs in rat jejunum. Our data provide a link between anti-proliferative mir-16 and the intestinal proliferation rhythm and point to mir-16 as an important regulator of proliferation in jejunal crypts. This function may be essential to match proliferation and absorptive capacity with nutrient availability.
microRNA; diurnal; proliferation; enterocyte
This study was performed to investigate the effect of microRNA-203 (miR-203) and ΔNp63 on cell proliferation and the functional connection between miR-203 and ΔNp63 in ESCC.
We employed 2 human ESCC cell lines, Eca109 and TE-1, as the model system. The effect of miR-203 and ΔNp63 on cell proliferation was determined in cells transfected with miR-203 mimic and ΔNp63 small interfering RNA (siRNA), respectively. The regulation of ΔNp63 expression in ESCC cells by miR-203 was studied by luciferase reporter assay, RT-PCR and western blot analysis in cells transfected with miR-203. The effect of ΔNp63 re-expression on miR-203 induced inhibition of cell proliferation was studied by cell proliferation assay in cells cotransfected with miR-203 and pcDNA-ΔNp63 plasmid (without the 3'-UTR of ΔNp63).
We found that both miR-203 and ΔNp63 siRNA signicantly inhibited cell proliferation in ESCC. MiR-203 could down-regulate endogenous ΔNp63 expression at the posttranscriptional level. Moreover, re-expression of ΔNp63 in cells transfected with miR-203 significantly attenuated the miR-203 induced inhibition of cell proliferation.
Our data implied that miR-203 could inhibit cell proliferation in human ESCC through ΔNp63-mediated signal pathway. Therefore, we propose that miR-203 might be used as a therapeutic agent for human ESCC.
MicroRNAs are involved in cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis and can function as tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes. The role of microRNAs in neuroendocrine tumors such as ileal carcinoids is largely unknown. We examined the differential expression of 95 microRNAs by RT-PCR using the QuantiMir System in eight matching primary and metastatic carcinoid tumors from the ileum. All microRNAs chosen for the QuantiMir System Array were based on their potential functions related to cancer biology, cell development and apoptosis. The expression of microRNAs for the samples was normalized to microRNA-197, and the matching primary and metastatic tumors were compared. There was down-regulation of microRNA-133a, 145, 146, 222 and 10b in all samples between the primary and matching metastatic tumors and up-regulation of microRNA-183, 488 and 19a + b in six of eight metastatic carcinoids compared to the primary tumors. MicroRNA-133a was further analyzed by TaqMan Real Time RT-PCR and Northern hybridization using six additional matching primary and metastatic samples which supported the PCR Array findings. There were significant differences in microRNA-133a expression with down-regulation in the metastasis compared to the primary in the eight original cases (p<0.009) and in the six additional cases used for validation (p<0.014). Laser capture microdissection and Real Time RT-PCR analysis using normal ileum found microRNA-133a expression in normal enterochromaffin cells. In situ hybridization in normal ileum showed that some of the mucosal endocrine cells expressed microRNA-133a. Both primary and metastatic ileal carcinoid tumors expressed microRNA-133a by in situ hybridization. These results provide information about novel marker microRNAs that may be used as biomarkers and/or therapeutic targets in intestinal carcinoid tumors.
PCR array; carcinoids; enterochromaffin cells; RT-PCR; in situ hybridization
MicroRNAs (mirs) are small non-coding RNA molecules (~22 nucleotides) that regulate post-transcriptional gene expression. Currently, there has not been a comprehensive study of their role in primary HNSCC. To determine the role of mirs in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC), we screened for altered microRNA expression in HNSCC primary tissue and cell lines. We then further tested the functional impact of alterations of specific mirs.
An initial screening of 4 primary HNSCC, 4 normal mucosal controls and 4 HNSCC cell lines were analyzed for mature microRNA expression by microarray. Significance was determined using Significance Analysis of Microarrays (SAM). Nine microRNAs were found by SAM to be up-regulated or down-regulated in tumor tissue including mir-21,let-7,18,29c,142-3p,155,146b(over-expressed) and 494(under-expressed). Mir-21 was validated by qRT-PCR.
Functional validation by growth assays was performed, further validating mir-21. Transfection of mir-21 into JHU-011 and JHU-012 cell lines showed a 39% increase in cell growth at 72 hrs relative to controls (p<.05). Transfection of the inhibitor into JHU-O12 cell lines showed a 92% decrease in cell growth relative to controls at 72hrs (p<.05). In addition, flow cytometry analysis of JHU-012 cells 48 hrs after mir-21 inhibitor transfection showed a statistically significantly increase in cytochrome c release and increased apoptosis.
These differentially expressed microRNAs may be of interest as potential novel oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes in HNSCC. Mir-21 is a putative oncogenic microRNA in head and neck cancer.
MicroRNA; HNSCC; Mir-21; Mir-494; Mir; Squamous Cell Cancer
Cancer progression is a complex series of events thought to incorporate the reversible developmental process of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). In vitro, the microRNA-200 family maintains the epithelial phenotype by posttranscriptionally inhibiting the E-cadherin repressors, ZEB1 and ZEB2. Here, we used in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry to assess expression of miR-200 and EMT biomarkers in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded human colorectal adenocarcinomas. In addition, laser capture microdissection and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction were employed to quantify levels of miR-200 in the normal epithelium, tumor core, invasive front, and stroma. We find that miR-200 is downregulated at the invasive front of colorectal adenocarcinomas that have destroyed and invaded beyond the basement membrane. However, regional lymph node metastases and vascular carcinoma deposits show strong expression of miR-200, suggesting this family of miRNAs is involved in the recapitulation of the primary tumor phenotype at metastatic sites. In contrast, adenomas and adenocarcinomas with intact basement membranes showed uniform miR-200 expression from the tumor core to the tumor-host interface. Taken together, these data support the involvement of EMT and mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition (MET) in the metastasis cascade and show that miR-200 is downregulated in the initial stages of stromal invasion but is restored at metastatic sites.
Barrett's esophagus (BE) is a disease with a rising prevalence in western countries probably due to the unhealthy lifestyle. In significant number of cases it develops to esophageal adenocarcinoma. Two decades ago, important gene regulators (microRNAs) were discovered and their attendance in the process of malignant transformation was demonstrated (e.g. miR-192, 196a, 203). Our aim was to select the patients with the increased risk of malignant transformation before the cancer develops.
71 patients with BE disease were selected, slides from FFPE blocks were prepared, the lesions were microdissected and a qPCR relative expression analysis for selected microRNAs (generally known to be connected with malignant transformation process) was carried out.
We demonstrated unequivocal statistically significant upregulation of two microRNAs (miR-192, 196a) and downregulation of miR-203 and positive miR-196a correlation with progression from intestinal metaplasia to adenocarcinoma compared to normal individuals.
We hypothetize that there do exist changes of selected microRNAs which can undoubtedly distinguish the patients with BE from normal healthy individuals.
microRNA; Barrett's esophagus; real-time PCR
Background & Aims
Barrett’s esophagus (BE) is a highly premalignant disease that predisposes to the development of esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC); however, the involvement of microRNAs (miRs) in BE-EAC carcinogenic progression is not known.
Esophageal cultured cells (HEEpiC, QhTRT, ChTRT, GihTRT and OE-33) and esophageal tissues (22 normal epithelia, 24 BE and 22 EAC) were studied. MiR microarrays and quantitative RT-PCR were employed to explore and verify differentially expressed miRs. Quantitative genomic PCR was performed to study genomic copy number variation at the miR-106b-25 polycistron and MCM7 gene locus on chromosome 7q22.1. In vitro cell proliferation, cell cycle, and apoptosis assays and in vivo tumorigenesis experiments were performed to elucidate biological effects of the miR-106b-25 polycistron. Western blotting and luciferase assays were performed to confirm direct mRNA targeting by miR-106b-25 polycistron.
The miR-106b-25 polycistron exerted potential proliferative, anti-apoptotic, cell cycle-promoting effects in vitro and tumorigenic activity in vivo. MiRs -93 and -106b targeted and inhibited p21, while miR-25 targeted and inhibited Bim. This polycistron was upregulated progressively at successive stages of neoplasia, in association with genomic amplification and overexpression of MCM7. In addition, miRs -93 and -106b decreased p21 mRNA, while miR-25 did not alter Bim mRNA, suggesting the following discrete miR effector mechanisms: 1) for p21, mRNA degradation; 2) for Bim, translational inhibition.
The miR-106b-25 polycistron is activated by genomic amplification and is potentially involved in esophageal neoplastic progression and proliferation via suppression of two target genes, p21 and Bim.
A limited number of reports have investigated the role of microRNAs in osteosarcoma. In this study, we performed miRNA expression profiling of osteosarcoma cell lines, tumor samples, and normal human osteoblasts. Twenty-two differentially expressed microRNAs were identified using high throughput real-time PCR analysis, and 4 (miR-135b, miR-150, miR-542-5p, and miR-652) were confirmed and validated in a different group of tumors. Both miR-135b and miR-150 have been previously shown to be important in cancer. We hypothesize that dysregulation of differentially expressed microRNAs may contribute to tumorigenesis. They might also represent molecular biomarkers or targets for drug development in osteosarcoma.
MicroRNA (miR)-92 is overexpressed in a number of tumors and has been proven to negatively regulate a number of tumor suppressor genes, including phosphatase and tensin homologue (PTEN). However, its function and molecular mechanism(s) of action in squamous cervical carcinoma (SCCs) have not been well described. Furthermore, the correlation between miR-92 and human papillomavirus (HPV)-16 E6 has not been studied. In the present study, miR-92 expression levels were quantified using quantitative PCR (qPCR) in cervical cancer tissues, normal cervical tissues and cervical cancer cell lines. SiHa cells were transfected with either miR-92-mimics, anti-miR-92 or negative controls. C33A cells were stably transfected with pEGFP-N1-16E6 and pEGFP-N1-neo plasmids. The levels of PTEN protein expression in the transfected SiHa and C33A cells were evaluated using western blot analysis. The effects of miR-92 were detected using cell counting kit (CCK)-8 and Transwell assays. HPV16 E6 siRNA was used to detect the effectiveness of the E6 protein on miR-92 in the SiHa and C33A cells. miR-92 was highly-expressed in the human cervical cancer tissues compared with the normal tissues. In the HPV16-positive cervical cancer tissues, the expression of miR-92 was higher compared with the HPV16-negative cervical cancer tissues. HPV16 E6 upregulated miR-92 expression in the SiHa- and C33A-pEGFP-N1-16E6 cells. The upregulation of miR-92 promoted cell growth and invasion in the SiHa cells. PTEN protein expression was decreased in the SiHa cells that were transfected with the miR-92 mimic. The data indicated that miR-92 may increase the migration and invasion of SiHa cells, partially through the downregulation of PTEN protein expression. HPV16 E6 was identified to upregulate miR-92 expression.
squamous cervical carcinoma; microRNA -92; phosphatase and tensin homologue; human papillomavirus-16 E6
Zinc deficiency (ZD) increases the risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). In a rat model, chronic ZD induces an inflammatory gene signature that fuels ESCC development. microRNAs regulate gene expression and are aberrantly expressed in cancers. Here we investigated whether chronic ZD (23 weeks) also induces a protumorigenic microRNA signature. Using the nanoString technology, we evaluated microRNA profiles in ZD esophagus and six additional tissues (skin, lung, pancreas, liver, prostate and peripheral blood mononuclear cells [PBMC]). ZD caused overexpression of inflammation genes and altered microRNA expression across all tissues analyzed, predictive of disease development. Importantly, the inflammatory ZD esophagus had a distinct microRNA signature resembling human ESCC or tongue SCC miRNAomes with miR-31 and miR-21 as the top-up-regulated species. Circulating miR-31 was also the top-up-regulated species in PBMCs. In ZD esophagus and tongue, oncogenic miR-31 and miR-21 overexpression was accompanied by down-regulation of their respective tumor-suppressor targets PPP2R2A and PDCD4. Importantly, esophageal miR-31 and miR-21 levels were directly associated with the appearance of ESCC in ZD rats, as compared with their cancer-free Zn-sufficient or Zn-replenished counterparts. In situ hybridization analysis in rat and human tongue SCCs localized miR-31 to tumor cells and miR-21 to stromal cells. In regressing tongue SCCs from Zn-supplemented rats, miR-31 and miR-21 expression was concomitantly reduced, establishing their responsiveness to Zn therapy. A search for putative microRNA targets revealed a bias toward genes in inflammatory pathways. Our finding that ZD causes miR-31 and miR-21 dysregulation associated with inflammation provides insight into mechanisms whereby ZD promotes ESCC.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules with an essential role in regulation of gene expression. miRNA expression profiles differ between tumor and normal control tissue in many types of cancers and miRNA profiling is seen as a promising field for finding new diagnostic and prognostic tools.
Materials and Methods:
In this study, we have analyzed expression of three miRNAs, miR-21, miR-125b, and miR-203, and their potential target proteins p53 and p63, known to be deregulated in squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN), in two distinct and one mixed subsite in squamous cell carcinoma in the oral cavity.
We demonstrate that levels of miRNA differ between tumors of different subsites with tongue tumors showing significant deregulation of all three miRNAs, whereas gingival tumors only showed significant downregulation of miR-125b and the mixed group of tumors in tongue/floor of the mouth showed significant deregulation of miR-21 and miR-125b. In the whole group of oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), a significant negative correlation was seen between miR-125b and p53 as well as a significant correlation between TP53 mutation status and miR-125b.
The present data once again emphasize the need to take subsite into consideration when analyzing oral SCC and clearly show that data from in vitro studies cannot be transferred directly to the in vivo situation.
MicroRNA; oral squamous cell carcinoma; p53; p63
Based on the microRNA (miRNA) expression signatures of hypopharyngeal and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma, we found that miR-1 was significantly down-regulated in cancer cells. In this study, we investigated the functional significance of miR-1 in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) cells and identified miR-1-regulated novel cancer pathways. Gain-of-function studies using miR-1 revealed significant decreases in HNSCC cell proliferation, invasion, and migration. In addition, the promotion of cell apoptosis and cell cycle arrest was demonstrated following miR-1 transfection of cancer cells. A search for the targets of miR-1 revealed that transgelin 2 (TAGLN2) was directly regulated by miR-1. Silencing of TAGLN2 significantly inhibited cell proliferation and invasion in HNSCC cells. Down-regulation of miR-1 and up-regulation of TAGLN2 were confirmed in HNSCC clinical specimens. Our data indicate that TAGLN2 may have an oncogenic function and may be regulated by miR-1, a tumor suppressive miRNA in HNSCC. The identification of novel miR-1-regulated cancer pathways could provide new insights into potential molecular mechanisms of HNSCC carcinogenesis.
microRNA; miR-1; TAGLN2; tumor suppressor; HNSCC; microarray; oncogenes; oncotargets
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in the regulation of genes associated with cancer development and progression. By the more deeply characterization of miRNAs’ effect in cancer development, it requires a useful tool to investigate expression and distribution of a miRNA in cancer cells and tissues. To fulfill this application demand, we developed a miRNA in situ hybridization (MISH) approach using the 2′-Fluoro modified miRNA probe in combination with enzyme-labeled fluorescence (ELF) signal amplification approach. MISH was used to study expression of miR-375 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) cell lines and tissues using a tissue microarray (TMA) containing 300 cases. The results showed that our MISH approach is a practical way to detect expression and distribution of a tested miRNA in both cultured cells and archive tissue sections. MISH results also showed that miR-375 was frequently downregulated in ESCCs, which was significantly associated with advanced clinical stage (p = 0.003) tumor metastasis (p = 0.04) and poor outcome (p = 0.04) of ESCC. Moreover, the accuracy of MISH results could be confirmed by QRT-PCR. Our results demonstrated that MISH is a useful and reliable tool to study miRNA expression in solid tumors. Downregulation of miR-375 can be used as a biomarker to predict the outcome of ESCC.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a large group of negative gene regulators that potentially play a critical role in tumorigenesis. Increasing evidences indicate that miR-145 acts a tumor suppressor in numerous human cancers. However, its role in oral carcinogenesis remains poorly defined. The aim of this study is to determine expression levels of miR-145 in oral squamous cell carcinomas (OSCCs) and normal mucosa tissues, and explore its biological functions in OSCCs.
Reverse transcription quantitative real-time PCR (RT-qPCR) assay was used to evaluate expression levels of miR-145. The biological functions of miR-145 were determined by cell proliferation and colony formation, cell cycle and apoptosis, as well as cell invasion assay.
MiR-145 was frequently down-regulated in OSCCs compared with normal mucosa tissues. Restoring miR-145 expression in OSCC cells dramatically suppressed cell proliferation and colony formation, and induced G1 phase arrest and cell apoptosis. Importantly, our data showed that miR-145 downregulated the expression of c-Myc and Cdk6, which have previously been identified as two direct targets of miR-145.
Our data suggest that miR-145 exerts its tumor suppressor function by targeting c-Myc and Cdk6, leading to the inhibition of OSCC cell growth. MiR-145 rescue may thus be a rational for diagnostic and therapeutic applications in OSCC.
Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC); MiR-145; c-Myc; Cyclin D1; Cdk6
Recent our microRNA (miRNA) expression signature revealed that expression of microRNA-218 (miR-218) was reduced in cancer tissues, suggesting a candidate of tumor suppressor in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). The aim of this study was to investigate the functional significance of miR-218 and its mediated moleculer pathways in HNSCC. Restoration of miR-218 in cancer cells led to significant inhibition of cell migration and invasion activities in HNSCC cell lines (FaDu and SAS). Genome-wide gene expression analysis of miR-218 transfectants and in silico database analysis showed that focal adhesion pathway was a promising candidate of miR-218 target pathways. The laminins are an important and biologically active part of the basal lamina, the function of that are various such as influencing cell differentiation, migration and adhesion as well as proliferation and cell survival. Interestingly, all components of laminin-332 (LAMA3, LAMB3 and LAMC2) are listed on the candidate genes in focal adhesion pathway. Furthermore, we focused on LAMB3 which has a miR-218 target site and gene expression studies and luciferase reporter assays showed that LAMB3 was directly regulated by miR-218. Silencing study of LAMB3 demonstrated significant inhibition of cell migration and invasion. In clinical specimens with HNSCC, the expression levels of laminin-332 were significantly upregulated in cancer tissues compared to adjacent non-cancerous tissues. Our analysis data showed that tumor suppressive miR-218 contributes to cancer cell migration and invasion through regulating focal adhesion pathway, especially laminin-332. Tumor suppressive miRNA-mediated novel cancer pathways provide new insights into the potential mechanisms of HNSCC oncogenesis.
microRNA; miR-218; tumor suppressor; focal adhesion; laminin-332; head and neck squamous cell carcinoma
Retroviral insertion into a host genome is a powerful tool not only for the discovery of cancer genes, but also for the discovery of potential oncogenic noncoding RNAs. In a large-scale mouse T lymphocyte tumor screen we found a high density of integrations upstream of the mir-106a microRNA cistron. In tumors containing an integration, the primary transcript encoding the mir-106a cistron was overexpressed five to 20-fold compared with that of control tumors; concomitantly, the mature mir-106a and mir-363 microRNAs were highly overexpressed as well. These findings suggest the mir-106a cistron plays an important role in T cell tumorigenesis.