Search tips
Search criteria

Results 1-25 (647964)

Clipboard (0)

Related Articles

1.  Evaluation of microRNA expression profiles and their associations with risk alleles in lymphoblastoid cell lines of familial ovarian cancer 
Carcinogenesis  2012;33(3):604-612.
Interindividual variations of microRNA expression are likely to influence the expression of microRNA target genes and, therefore, contribute to phenotypic differences in humans, including cancer susceptibility. Whether microRNA expression variation has any role in ovarian cancer development is still unknown. Here, we evaluated microRNA expression profiles in lymphoblastoid cell lines from 74 women with familial ovarian cancer and 47 unrelated controls matched on gender and race. We found that the cases and unrelated controls can be clustered using 95 differentially expressed microRNAs with 91% accuracy. To assess the potential implications of microRNAs in ovarian cancer, we investigated the associations between microRNA expression and seven ovarian cancer risk variants discovered from genome-wide association studies (GWAS), namely, rs3814113 on 9p22.2, rs2072590 on 2q31, rs2665390 on 3q25, rs10088218, rs1516982, rs10098821 on 8q24.21 and rs2363956 on 19p13. We observed 130 significant associations at a permutation level of 0.01. Compared with other risk variants, rs3814113 and rs2072590 had the greatest number of significant associations (68 and 37, respectively). Interestingly, 14 microRNAs that were associated with ovarian cancer risk alleles belong to five microRNA clusters. The most notable cluster is the tumorigenic miR-17-92 cluster with five microRNAs, all of which are significantly associated with rs3814113. Using pathway analysis, several key biological pathways were significantly overrepresented, such as cellular response to stress (P = 2.87 × 10−06), etc. Further characterization of significant associations between microRNAs and risk alleles could facilitate the understanding of the functions of these GWAS discovered risk alleles in the genetic etiology of ovarian cancer.
PMCID: PMC3291866  PMID: 22235027
2.  Differentiating Human Multipotent Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Regulate microRNAs: Prediction of microRNA Regulation by PDGF During Osteogenesis 
Experimental hematology  2008;36(10):1354-1369.
Human multipotent mesenchymal stromal cells (MSC) have the potential to differentiate into multiple cell types, although little is known about factors that control their fate. Differentiation-specific microRNAs may play a key role in stem cell self renewal and differentiation. We propose that specific intracellular signalling pathways modulate gene expression during differentiation by regulating microRNA expression.
Illumina mRNA and NCode microRNA expression analyses were performed on MSC and their differentiated progeny. A combination of bioinformatic prediction and pathway inhibition was used to identify microRNAs associated with PDGF signalling.
The pattern of microRNA expression in MSC is distinct from that in pluripotent stem cells such as human embryonic stem cells. Specific populations of microRNAs are regulated in MSC during differentiation targeted towards specific cell types. Complementary mRNA expression analysis increases the pool of markers characteristic of MSC or differentiated progeny. To identify microRNA expression patterns affected by signalling pathways, we examined the PDGF pathway found to be regulated during osteogenesis by microarray studies. A set of microRNAs bioinformatically predicted to respond to PDGF signalling was experimentally confirmed by direct PDGF inhibition.
Our results demonstrate that a subset of microRNAs regulated during osteogenic differentiation of MSCs is responsive to perturbation of the PDGF pathway. This approach not only identifies characteristic classes of differentiation-specific mRNAs and microRNAs, but begins to link regulated molecules with specific cellular pathways.
PMCID: PMC2782644  PMID: 18657893
3.  A Functional Variant in MicroRNA-146a Promoter Modulates Its Expression and Confers Disease Risk for Systemic Lupus Erythematosus 
PLoS Genetics  2011;7(6):e1002128.
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a complex autoimmune disease with a strong genetic predisposition, characterized by an upregulated type I interferon pathway. MicroRNAs are important regulators of immune homeostasis, and aberrant microRNA expression has been demonstrated in patients with autoimmune diseases. We recently identified miR-146a as a negative regulator of the interferon pathway and linked the abnormal activation of this pathway to the underexpression of miR-146a in SLE patients. To explore why the expression of miR-146a is reduced in SLE patients, we conducted short parallel sequencing of potentially regulatory regions of miR-146a and identified a novel genetic variant (rs57095329) in the promoter region exhibiting evidence for association with SLE that was replicated independently in 7,182 Asians (Pmeta = 2.74×10−8, odds ratio = 1.29 [1.18–1.40]). The risk-associated G allele was linked to reduced expression of miR-146a in the peripheral blood leukocytes of the controls. Combined functional assays showed that the risk-associated G allele reduced the protein-binding affinity and activity of the promoter compared with those of the promoter containing the protective A allele. Transcription factor Ets-1, encoded by the lupus-susceptibility gene ETS1, identified in recent genome-wide association studies, binds near this variant. The manipulation of Ets-1 levels strongly affected miR-146a promoter activity in vitro; and the knockdown of Ets-1, mimicking its reduced expression in SLE, directly impaired the induction of miR-146a. We also observed additive effects of the risk alleles of miR-146a and ETS1. Our data identified and confirmed an association between a functional promoter variant of miR-146a and SLE. This risk allele had decreased binding to transcription factor Ets-1, contributing to reduced levels of miR-146a in SLE patients.
Author Summary
Genome-wide association studies have identified quite a number of susceptibility loci associated with complex diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). However, for most of them, the intrinsic link between genetic variation and disease mechanism is not fully understood. SLE is characterized by a significantly upregulated type I interferon (IFN) pathway, and we have previously reported that underexpression of a microRNA, miR-146a, contributes to alterations in the type I IFN pathway in lupus patients. Here we identified a novel genetic variant in the promoter region of miR-146a that is directly related to reduced expression of miR-146a and is associated with SLE susceptibility. The risk allele of this variant confers weaker binding affinity for Ets-1, which is a transcription factor encoded by a lupus susceptibility gene found in recent GWAS. These findings suggest that reduced expression of Ets-1 and its reduced binding affinity to the miR-146a promoter both may contribute to low levels of this microRNA in SLE patients, which may contribute to the upregulated type I IFN pathway in these patients. To our knowledge, this is also the first piece of evidence showing association between a genetic variant in a promoter region of a miRNA gene and a human disease.
PMCID: PMC3128113  PMID: 21738483
4.  Microarray analysis of microRNA expression in the developing mammalian brain 
Genome Biology  2004;5(9):R68.
A microarray technology suitable for analyzing the expression of microRNAs and of other small RNAs was used to determine the microRNA expression profile during mouse-brain development and observed a temporal wave of gene expression of sequential classes of microRNAs.
MicroRNAs are a large new class of tiny regulatory RNAs found in nematodes, plants, insects and mammals. MicroRNAs are thought to act as post-transcriptional modulators of gene expression. In invertebrates microRNAs have been implicated as regulators of developmental timing, neuronal differentiation, cell proliferation, programmed cell death and fat metabolism. Little is known about the roles of microRNAs in mammals.
We isolated 18-26 nucleotide RNAs from developing rat and monkey brains. From the sequences of these RNAs and the sequences of the rat and human genomes we determined which of these small RNAs are likely to have derived from stem-loop precursors typical of microRNAs. Next, we developed a microarray technology suitable for detecting microRNAs and printed a microRNA microarray representing 138 mammalian microRNAs corresponding to the sequences of the microRNAs we cloned as well as to other known microRNAs. We used this microarray to determine the profile of microRNAs expressed in the developing mouse brain. We observed a temporal wave of expression of microRNAs, suggesting that microRNAs play important roles in the development of the mammalian brain.
We describe a microarray technology that can be used to analyze the expression of microRNAs and of other small RNAs. MicroRNA microarrays offer a new tool that should facilitate studies of the biological roles of microRNAs. We used this method to determine the microRNA expression profile during mouse brain development and observed a temporal wave of gene expression of sequential classes of microRNAs.
PMCID: PMC522875  PMID: 15345052
5.  Tissue-specific regulation of mouse MicroRNA genes in endoderm-derived tissues 
Nucleic Acids Research  2010;39(2):454-463.
MicroRNAs fine-tune the activity of hundreds of protein-coding genes. The identification of tissue-specific microRNAs and their promoters has been constrained by the limited sensitivity of prior microRNA quantification methods. Here, we determine the entire microRNAome of three endoderm-derived tissues, liver, jejunum and pancreas, using ultra-high throughput sequencing. Although many microRNA genes are expressed at comparable levels, 162 microRNAs exhibited striking tissue-specificity. After mapping the putative promoters for these microRNA genes using H3K4me3 histone occupancy, we analyzed the regulatory modules of 63 microRNAs differentially expressed between liver and jejunum or pancreas. We determined that the same transcriptional regulatory mechanisms govern tissue-specific gene expression of both mRNA and microRNA encoding genes in mammals.
PMCID: PMC3025567  PMID: 20843784
6.  microPIR: An Integrated Database of MicroRNA Target Sites within Human Promoter Sequences 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(3):e33888.
microRNAs are generally understood to regulate gene expression through binding to target sequences within 3′-UTRs of mRNAs. Therefore, computational prediction of target sites is usually restricted to these gene regions. Recent experimental studies though have suggested that microRNAs may alternatively modulate gene expression by interacting with promoters. A database of potential microRNA target sites in promoters would stimulate research in this field leading to more understanding of complex microRNA regulatory mechanism.
We developed a database hosting predicted microRNA target sites located within human promoter sequences and their associated genomic features, called microPIR (microRNA-Promoter Interaction Resource). microRNA seed sequences were used to identify perfect complementary matching sequences in the human promoters and the potential target sites were predicted using the RNAhybrid program. >15 million target sites were identified which are located within 5000 bp upstream of all human genes, on both sense and antisense strands. The experimentally confirmed argonaute (AGO) binding sites and EST expression data including the sequence conservation across vertebrate species of each predicted target are presented for researchers to appraise the quality of predicted target sites. The microPIR database integrates various annotated genomic sequence databases, e.g. repetitive elements, transcription factor binding sites, CpG islands, and SNPs, offering users the facility to extensively explore relationships among target sites and other genomic features. Furthermore, functional information of target genes including gene ontologies, KEGG pathways, and OMIM associations are provided. The built-in genome browser of microPIR provides a comprehensive view of multidimensional genomic data. Finally, microPIR incorporates a PCR primer design module to facilitate experimental validation.
The proposed microPIR database is a useful integrated resource of microRNA-promoter target interactions for experimental microRNA researchers and computational biologists to study the microRNA regulation through gene promoter. The database can be freely accessed from:
PMCID: PMC3306312  PMID: 22439011
7.  miR-29b and miR-29c Are Involved in Toll-Like Receptor Control of Glucocorticoid-Induced Apoptosis in Human Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cells 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(7):e69926.
Glucocorticoids (GCs) are frequently used to treat many of the acute disease manifestations associated with inflammatory and autoimmune disorders. However, Toll-like receptor (TLR) pathway-activated plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) are resistant to GC-induced apoptosis, which leads to the inefficiency of GCs in the treatment of type I interferon-related autoimmune diseases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Therefore, compounds promoting pDC apoptosis may be helpful for improving the efficacy of GCs. In this study, we performed screening to identify microRNAs (miRNAs) involved in TLR-inhibited GC-induced pDC apoptosis and found an array of miRNAs that may regulate pDC apoptosis. Among those demonstrating altered expression, 6 miRNAs were inhibited in TLR-activated pDCs. Bioinformatics analysis and functional studies indicated that miR-29b and miR-29c were 2 key miRNAs involved in TLR-inhibited GC-induced pDC apoptosis. Furthermore, both of these miRNAs promoted pDC apoptosis by directly targeting Mcl-1 and Bcl-2 in human primary pDCs. Our findings provide new targets that could improve the efficacy of GCs for the treatment of SLE.
PMCID: PMC3720938  PMID: 23894561
8.  The clinical potential of microRNAs 
MicroRNAs are small noncoding RNAs that function to control gene expression. These small RNAs have been shown to contribute to the control of cell growth, differentiation and apoptosis, important features related to cancer development and progression. In fact, recent studies have shown the utility of microRNAs as cancer-related biomarkers. This is due to the finding that microRNAs display altered expression profiles in cancers versus normal tissue. In addition, microRNAs have been associated with cancer progression. In this review, the mechanisms to alter microRNA expression and their relation to cancer will be addressed. Moreover, the potential application of microRNAs in clinical settings will also be highlighted. Finally, the challenges regarding the translation of research involving microRNAs to the clinical realm will be discussed.
PMCID: PMC2958878  PMID: 20925959
9.  Mycobacterium bovis BCG Triggered MyD88 Induces miR-124 Feedback Negatively Regulates Immune Response in Alveolar Epithelial Cells 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(4):e92419.
The emerging roles of microRNAs (miRNAs) and pulmonary epithelial cells in regulating the immune response against microbial invasion has attracted increasing attention in recent years, however, the immunoregulatory roles of miRNAs in the pulmonary epithelial cells in response to mycobacterial infection has not been fully demonstrated. In this study, we show that miR-124 expression is induced upon Mycobacterium bovis Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) infection in A549 alveolar epithelial cells and murine lungs. miR-124 is able to modulate Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling in A459 cells. In this regard, multiple components, including TLR6, myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88), TNFR-associated factor 6 and tumor necrosis factor-α of the TLR signaling cascade are directly regulated by miR-124 in response to BCG stimulation. In addition, miR-124 expression was induced upon MyD88 overexpression and/or BCG stimulation, while silencing MyD88 expression by small interfering RNA dramatically down-regulated miR-124 transcription in A549 cells. These results indicate an underlying negative feedback mechanism between miR-124 and MyD88 in alveolar epithelial cells to prevent an excessive inflammatory response during mycobacterial infection. These observations suggest that miR-124 is a potential target for preventive and therapeutic intervention against the pulmonary tuberculosis, an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.
PMCID: PMC3976256  PMID: 24705038
10.  MicroRNAs Implicated in the Immunopathogenesis of Lupus Nephritis 
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune disease characterized by the deposition of immune complexes due to widespread loss of immune tolerance to nuclear self-antigens. Deposition in the renal glomeruli results in the development of lupus nephritis (LN), the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in SLE. In addition to the well-recognized genetic susceptibility to SLE, disease pathogenesis is influenced by epigenetic regulators such as microRNAs (miRNAs). miRNAs are small, noncoding RNAs that bind to the 3′ untranslated region of target mRNAs resulting in posttranscriptional gene modulation. miRNAs play an important and dynamic role in the activation of innate immune cells and are critical in regulating the adaptive immune response. Immune stimulation and the resulting cytokine milieu alter miRNA expression while miRNAs themselves modify cellular responses to stimulation. Here we examine dysregulated miRNAs implicated in LN pathogenesis from human SLE patients and murine lupus models. The effects of LN-associated miRNAs in the kidney, peripheral blood mononuclear cells, macrophages, mesangial cells, dendritic cells, and splenocytes are discussed. As the role of miRNAs in immunopathogenesis becomes delineated, it is likely that specific miRNAs may serve as targets for therapeutic intervention in the treatment of LN and other pathologies.
PMCID: PMC3741610  PMID: 23983769
11.  Ago2 Immunoprecipitation Identifies Predicted MicroRNAs in Human Embryonic Stem Cells and Neural Precursors 
PLoS ONE  2009;4(9):e7192.
MicroRNAs are required for maintenance of pluripotency as well as differentiation, but since more microRNAs have been computationally predicted in genome than have been found, there are likely to be undiscovered microRNAs expressed early in stem cell differentiation.
Methodology/Principal Findings
SOLiD ultra-deep sequencing identified >107 unique small RNAs from human embryonic stem cells (hESC) and neural-restricted precursors that were fit to a model of microRNA biogenesis to computationally predict 818 new microRNA genes. These predicted genomic loci are associated with chromatin patterns of modified histones that are predictive of regulated gene expression. 146 of the predicted microRNAs were enriched in Ago2-containing complexes along with 609 known microRNAs, demonstrating association with a functional RISC complex. This Ago2 IP-selected subset was consistently expressed in four independent hESC lines and exhibited complex patterns of regulation over development similar to previously-known microRNAs, including pluripotency-specific expression in both hESC and iPS cells. More than 30% of the Ago2 IP-enriched predicted microRNAs are new members of existing families since they share seed sequences with known microRNAs.
Extending the classic definition of microRNAs, this large number of new microRNA genes, the majority of which are less conserved than their canonical counterparts, likely represent evolutionarily recent regulators of early differentiation. The enrichment in Ago2 containing complexes, the presence of chromatin marks indicative of regulated gene expression, and differential expression over development all support the identification of 146 new microRNAs active during early hESC differentiation.
PMCID: PMC2745660  PMID: 19784364
12.  MicroRNA Control of Muscle Development and Disease 
Current opinion in cell biology  2009;21(3):461-469.
Cardiac and skeletal muscle development are controlled by evolutionarily conserved networks of transcription factors that coordinate the expression of genes involved in muscle growth, morphogenesis, differentiation, and contractility. In addition to regulating the expression of protein-coding genes, recent studies have revealed that myogenic transcription factors control the expression of a collection of microRNAs, which act through multiple mechanisms to modulate muscle development and function. In some cases, microRNAs fine-tune the expression of target mRNAs, whereas in other cases they function as “on-off” switches. MicroRNA control of gene expression appears to be especially important during cardiovascular and skeletal muscle diseases, in which microRNAs participate in stress-dependent remodeling of striated muscle tissues. We review findings that point to the importance of microRNA-mediated control of gene expression during muscle development and disease, and consider the potential of microRNAs as therapeutic targets.
PMCID: PMC2692369  PMID: 19278845
13.  MicroRNAs and Gastroenterological Cancers 
MicroRNAs are small noncoding RNAs that control gene expression. In doing so, they functionally contribute to the maintenance of cellular processes as well as several important features related to cancer development and progression such as cell growth control, differentiation and apoptosis. In fact, recent studies have shown that microRNAs are suitable and effective cancer-related biomarkers since they display altered expression profiles in cancers versus normal tissue. In addition, microRNAs have been associated with cancer progression and outcome. In this review, the current state of knowledge microRNA expression and function in relation to gastroenterological cancers will be addressed. Moreover, the mechanisms to alter their expression and the potential application of microRNAs in clinical settings will also be highlighted. Finally, the challenges involved in translating microRNA research to the clinic will be discussed.
PMCID: PMC3349158  PMID: 22582080
14.  Differential microRNA Profiles and Their Functional Implications in Different Immunogenetic Subsets of Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia 
Molecular Medicine  2013;19(1):115-123.
Critical processes of B-cell physiology, including immune signaling through the B-cell receptor (BcR) and/or Toll-like receptors (TLRs), are targeted by microRNAs. With this in mind and also given the important role of BcR and TLR signaling and microRNAs in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), we investigated whether microRNAs could be implicated in shaping the behavior of CLL clones with distinct BcR and TLR molecular and functional profiles. To this end, we examined 79 CLL cases for the expression of 33 microRNAs, selected on the following criteria: (a) deregulated in CLL versus normal B-cells; (b) differentially expressed in CLL subgroups with distinct clinicobiological features; and, (c) if meeting (a) + (b), having predicted targets in the immune signaling pathways. Significant upregulation of miR-150, miR-29c, miR-143 and miR-223 and downregulation of miR-15a was found in mutated versus unmutated CLL, with miR-15a showing the highest fold difference. Comparison of two major subsets with distinct stereotyped BcRs and signaling signatures, namely subset 1 [IGHV1/5/7-IGKV1(D)-39, unmutated, bad prognosis] versus subset 4 [IGHV4-34/IGKV2-30, mutated, good prognosis] revealed differences in the expression of miR-150, miR-29b, miR-29c and miR-101, all down-regulated in subset 1. We were also able to link these distinct microRNA profiles with cellular phenotypes, importantly showing that, in subset 1, miR-101 downregulation is associated with overexpression of the enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) protein, which has been associated with clinical aggressiveness in other B-cell lymphomas. In conclusion, specific miRNAs differentially expressed among CLL subgroups with distinct BcR and/or TLR signaling may modulate the biological and clinical behavior of the CLL clones.
PMCID: PMC3667214  PMID: 23615967
15.  Increased expression of microRNA-146a decreases myocardial ischaemia/reperfusion injury 
Cardiovascular Research  2012;97(3):432-442.
We have reported that either toll-like receptor 4 deficiency (TLR4−/−) or TLR2 modulation protects against myocardial ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. The mechanisms involve attenuation of I/R-induced nuclear factor KappaB (NF-κB) activation. MicroRNA-146a (miR-146a) has been reported to target interleukin-1 receptor-associated kinase 1 (IRAK1) and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) receptor associated factor 6 (TRAF6), resulting in inhibiting NF-κB activation. This study examined the role of microRNA-146a in myocardial I/R injury.
Methods and results
We constructed lentivirus expressing miR-146a (LmiR-146a). LmiR-146a was transfected into mouse hearts through the right common carotid artery. The lentivirus vector (LmiR-Con) served as vector control. Untransfected mice served as I/R control. Sham operation served as sham control. Seven days after transfection, the hearts were subjected to ischaemia (60 min) followed by reperfusion (4 h). Myocardial infarct size was analysed by triphenyltetrazolium chloride (TTC) staining. In separate experiments, the hearts were subjected to ischaemia (60 min) followed by reperfusion for up to 7 days. Cardiac function was measured by echocardiography prior to I/R, 3 and 7 days after myocardial I/R. LmiR-146a transfection significantly decreased I/R-induced myocardial infarct size by 55% and prevented I/R-induced decreases in ejection fraction (EF%) and fractional shortening (%FS). LmiR-146a transfection attenuated I/R-induced myocardial apoptosis and caspase-3/7 and -8 activities. LmiR-146a transfection suppresses IRAK1 and TRAF6 expression in the myocardium. In addition, transfection of LmiR-146a prevented I/R-induced NF-κB activation and inflammatory cytokine production.
MicroRNA-146a protects the myocardium from I/R injury. The mechanisms may involve attenuation of NF-κB activation and inflammatory cytokine production by suppressing IRAK1 and TRAF6.
PMCID: PMC3567787  PMID: 23208587
MicroRNA-146a myocardial I/R; Toll-like receptors; NF-κB activation
16.  Toward MicroRNA-Based Therapeutics for Heart Disease - the sense in antisense 
Circulation research  2008;103(9):919-928.
MicroRNAs act as negative regulators of gene expression by inhibiting the translation or promoting the degradation of target mRNAs. Because individual microRNAs often regulate the expression of multiple target genes with related functions, modulating the expression of a single microRNA can, in principle, influence an entire gene network and thereby modify complex disease phenotypes. Recent studies have identified signature expression patterns of microRNAs associated with pathological cardiac hypertrophy, heart failure and myocardial infarction in humans and mouse models of heart disease. Gain- and loss-of-function studies in mice have revealed profound and unexpected functions for these microRNAs in numerous facets of cardiac biology, including the control of myocyte growth, contractility, fibrosis, and angiogenesis, providing glimpses of new regulatory mechanisms and potential therapeutic targets for heart disease. Especially intriguing is the discovery of a network of muscle-specific microRNAs embedded within myosin heavy chain genes, which control myosin expression and the response of the heart to stress and thyroid hormone signaling. Disease-inducing cardiac microRNAs can be persistently silenced in vivo through systemic delivery of anti-miRs, allowing for the direct therapeutic modulation of disease mechanisms. Here we summarize current knowledge of the roles of miRNAs in heart disease and consider the advantages and potential challenges of microRNA-based approaches compared to conventional drug-based therapies.
PMCID: PMC2725407  PMID: 18948630
microRNA; heart disease; remodeling; miR-based therapy
17.  TMEM106B, the risk gene for frontotemporal dementia, is regulated by the miRNA-132/212 cluster and affects progranulin pathways 
Frontotemporal lobar degeneration with TDP-43 inclusions (FTLD-TDP) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease with no available treatments. Mutations in the progranulin gene (GRN) causing impaired production or secretion of progranulin are a common Mendelian cause of FTLD-TDP; additionally, common variants at chromosome 7p21 in the uncharacterized gene TMEM106B were recently linked by genome-wide association to FTLD-TDP with and without GRN mutations. Here we show that TMEM106B is neuronally expressed in postmortem human brain tissue, and that expression levels are increased in FTLD-TDP brain. Furthermore, using an unbiased, microarray-based screen of over 800 microRNAs, we identify microRNA-132 as the top microRNA differentiating FTLD-TDP and control brains, with <50% normal expression levels of three members of the microRNA-132 cluster (microRNA-132, microRNA-132*, and microRNA-212) in disease. Computational analyses, corroborated empirically, demonstrate that the top mRNA target of both microRNA-132 and microRNA-212 is TMEM106B; both microRNAs repress TMEM106B expression through shared microRNA-132/212 binding sites in the TMEM106B 3’UTR. Increasing TMEM106B expression to model disease results in enlargement and poor acidification of endo-lysosomes, as well as impairment of mannose-6-phosphate-receptor trafficking. Finally, endogenous neuronal TMEM106B co-localizes with progranulin in late endo-lysosomes, and TMEM106B over-expression increases intracellular levels of progranulin. Thus, TMEM106B is an FTLD-TDP risk gene, with microRNA-132/212 depression as an event which can lead to aberrant over-expression of TMEM106B, which in turn alters progranulin pathways. Evidence for this pathogenic cascade includes the striking convergence of two independent, genomic-scale screens on a microRNA:mRNA regulatory pair. Our findings open novel directions for elucidating miRNA-based therapies in FTLD-TDP.
PMCID: PMC3446826  PMID: 22895706
Frontotemporal dementia; microRNA-132; microRNA-212; progranulin; TDP-43; frontotemporal lobar degeneration; TMEM106B
18.  MicroRNA 128a Increases Intracellular ROS Level by Targeting Bmi-1 and Inhibits Medulloblastoma Cancer Cell Growth by Promoting Senescence 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(6):e10748.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of short non-coding RNAs that regulate cell homeostasis by inhibiting translation or degrading mRNA of target genes, and thereby can act as tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes. The role of microRNAs in medulloblastoma has only recently been addressed. We hypothesized that microRNAs differentially expressed during normal CNS development might be abnormally regulated in medulloblastoma and are functionally important for medulloblastoma cell growth.
Methodology and Principal Findings
We examined the expression of microRNAs in medulloblastoma and then investigated the functional role of one specific one, miR-128a, in regulating medulloblastoma cell growth. We found that many microRNAs associated with normal neuronal differentiation are significantly down regulated in medulloblastoma. One of these, miR-128a, inhibits growth of medulloblastoma cells by targeting the Bmi-1 oncogene. In addition, miR-128a alters the intracellular redox state of the tumor cells and promotes cellular senescence.
Conclusions and Significance
Here we report the novel regulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) by microRNA 128a via the specific inhibition of the Bmi-1 oncogene. We demonstrate that miR-128a has growth suppressive activity in medulloblastoma and that this activity is partially mediated by targeting Bmi-1. This data has implications for the modulation of redox states in cancer stem cells, which are thought to be resistant to therapy due to their low ROS states.
PMCID: PMC2888574  PMID: 20574517
19.  Silencing of microRNA-21 in vivo ameliorates autoimmune splenomegaly in lupus mice 
EMBO Molecular Medicine  2011;3(10):605-615.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been implicated in B cell lineage commitment, regulation of T cell differentiation, TCR signalling, regulation of IFN signalling, and numerous other immunological processes. However, their function in autoimmunity, and specifically in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), remains poorly understood. B6.Sle123 is a spontaneous genetic mouse model of SLE characterized by autoantibody production, lymphosplenomegaly, and glomerulonephritis. We identified several differentially regulated miRNAs in B and T lymphocytes of B6.Sle123 mice. We found that miR-21 expression in lupus B and T cells is up-regulated and that in vivo silencing of miR-21 using a tiny seed-targeting LNA reversed splenomegaly, one of the cardinal manifestations of autoimmunity in B6.Sle123 mice, and de-repressed PDCD4 expression in vivo and in vitro. In addition, treatment with anti-miR-21 altered CD4/CD8 T cell ratios and reduced Fas receptor-expressing lymphocyte populations. Our study shows that tiny LNAs can be used to efficiently antagonize endogenous miRNAs in peripheral lymphocytes in vivo and in primary lymphocytes cultured ex vivo and can alter the course of a spontaneous genetic disease in mice.
PMCID: PMC3258486  PMID: 21882343
autoimmunity; miR-21/PDCD4; SLE; splenomegaly
20.  Silencing of microRNA-21 in vivo ameliorates autoimmune splenomegaly in lupus mice 
EMBO Molecular Medicine  2011;3(10):605-615.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been implicated in B cell lineage commitment, regulation of T cell differentiation, TCR signalling, regulation of IFN signalling, and numerous other immunological processes. However, their function in autoimmunity, and specifically in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), remains poorly understood. B6.Sle123 is a spontaneous genetic mouse model of SLE characterized by autoantibody production, lymphosplenomegaly, and glomerulonephritis. We identified several differentially regulated miRNAs in B and T lymphocytes of B6.Sle123 mice. We found that miR-21 expression in lupus B and T cells is up-regulated and that in vivo silencing of miR-21 using a tiny seed-targeting LNA reversed splenomegaly, one of the cardinal manifestations of autoimmunity in B6.Sle123 mice, and de-repressed PDCD4 expression in vivo and in vitro. In addition, treatment with anti-miR-21 altered CD4/CD8 T cell ratios and reduced Fas receptor-expressing lymphocyte populations. Our study shows that tiny LNAs can be used to efficiently antagonize endogenous miRNAs in peripheral lymphocytes in vivo and in primary lymphocytes cultured ex vivo and can alter the course of a spontaneous genetic disease in mice.
PMCID: PMC3258486  PMID: 21882343
autoimmunity; miR-21/PDCD4; SLE; splenomegaly
21.  MicroRNAs in cancer treatment and prognosis 
Disturbances in microRNA expression by epigenetic alterations and mutations may promote not only tumorigenesis but also tumor aggressiveness, invasion, metastasis, and resistance to chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Several studies have profiled microRNA expression in normal and tumorigenic tissues, demonstrating a unique microRNA signature, which can be used as a marker for cancer diagnosis and prognosis. This review discusses the importance of microRNAs as regulatory biomolecules involved in cancer, focusing on microRNAs related to cancer invasion, metastasis, epigenetic alterations, chemoresistance, and radioresistance. The identification of both differentially expressed microRNAs in tumors and their target genes provides new tools for gene therapy; the re-expression of microRNAs silenced by cancer development or the silencing of oncogenic microRNAs can be effective in the blockade of cancer-related cell proliferation.
PMCID: PMC3410578  PMID: 22860232
MicroRNA; epigenetic modifications; metastasis; chemotherapy; radiotherapy
22.  MicroRNA as a Novel Modulator in Head and Neck Squamous Carcinoma 
Journal of Oncology  2011;2010:135632.
MicroRNAs have emerged as important regulators of cell proliferation, development, cancer formation, stress responses, cell death, and other physiological conditions in the past decade. On the other hand, head and neck cancer is one of the top ten most common cancers worldwide. Recent advances in microRNAs have revealed their prominent role in regulating gene expression and provided new aspects of applications in diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutic strategies in head and neck squamous carcinoma. In the present paper, we focus on microRNAs showing significant differences between normal and tumor cells or between cells with differential ability of metastasis. We also emphasize specific microRNAs that could modulate tumor cell properties, such as apoptosis, metastasis, and proliferation. These microRNAs possess the potential to be applied on clinical therapy in the future.
PMCID: PMC3065009  PMID: 21461395
23.  Roles of TLR7 in Activation of NF-κB Signaling of Keratinocytes by Imiquimod 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(10):e77159.
Imiquimod is known to exert its effects through Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) and/or TLR8, resulting in expression of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines. Keratinocytes have not been reported to constitutively express TLR7 and TLR8, and the action of imiquimod is thought to be mediated by the adenine receptor, not TLR7 or TLR8. In this study, we revealed the expression of TLR7 in keratinocytes after calcium-induced differentiation. After addition of calcium to cultured keratinocytes, the immunological responses induced by imiquimod, such as activation of NF-κB and induction of TNF-α and IL-8, were more rapid and stronger. In addition, imiquimod induced the expression TLR7, and acted synergistically with calcium to induce proinflammatory cytokines. We confirmed that the responses induced by imiquimod were significantly inhibited by microRNAs suppressing TLR7 expression. These results suggest that TLR7 expressed in keratinocytes play key roles in the activation of NF-κB signaling by imiquimod, and that their modulation in keratinocytes could provide therapeutic potential for many inflammatory skin diseases.
PMCID: PMC3795621  PMID: 24146965
24.  Noncoding RNAs in Acute Myeloid Leukemia: From Key Regulators to Clinical Players 
Scientifica  2012;2012:925758.
Recent analyses have shown that human cells transcribe almost their entire genomes, implying the existence of a huge mass of ncRNAs. At the present, microRNAs are the most investigated regulative non-coding RNAs. Several studies have demonstrated that microRNAs play a crucial role in hematopoietic differentiation and hematological malignancies, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Aberrant expression of microRNAs has been associated with specific genetic abnormalities and clinical outcome of patients with AML. In addition, since microRNAs can function as either oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes, the potential of using these molecules as therapeutic targets opens up new opportunities in the future of AML therapy. The recent demonstration that other regulatory ncRNAs, in addition to microRNAs, are involved in hematopoietic cell differentiation and diseases, suggests that they may also have a biological relevance in AML. This paper will describe the role of ncRNAs in AML and discuss the expectations for the use of ncRNAs in diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy of AML.
PMCID: PMC3820507  PMID: 24278756
25.  MicroRNAs in rhabdomyosarcoma: pathogenetic implications and translational potentiality 
Molecular Cancer  2011;10:120.
There is growing evidence that interconnections among molecular pathways governing tissue differentiation are nodal points for malignant transformation. In this scenario, microRNAs appear as crucial players. This class of non-coding small regulatory RNA molecules controls developmental programs by modulating gene expression through post-transcriptional silencing of target mRNAs. During myogenesis, muscle-specific and ubiquitously-expressed microRNAs tightly control muscle tissue differentiation. In recent years, microRNAs have emerged as prominent players in cancer as well. Rhabdomyosarcoma is a pediatric skeletal muscle-derived soft-tissue sarcoma that originates from myogenic precursors arrested at different stages of differentiation and that continue to proliferate indefinitely. MicroRNAs involved in muscle cell fate determination appear down-regulated in rhabdomyosarcoma primary tumors and cell lines compared to their normal counterparts. More importantly, they behave as tumor suppressors in this malignancy, as their re-expression is sufficient to restore the differentiation capability of tumor cells and to prevent tumor growth in vivo. In addition, up-regulation of pro-oncogenic microRNAs has also been recently detected in rhabdomyosarcoma.
In this review, we provide an overview of current knowledge on microRNAs de-regulation in rhabdomyosarcoma. Additionally, we examine the potential of microRNAs as prognostic and diagnostic markers in this soft-tissue sarcoma, and discuss possible therapeutic applications and challenges of a "microRNA therapy".
PMCID: PMC3212852  PMID: 21943149

Results 1-25 (647964)