MicroRNAs are small non-coding nucleotide sequences that regulate gene expression. These structures are fundamental to several biological processes, including cell proliferation, development, differentiation and apoptosis. Identifying the expression profile of microRNAs in healthy human gastric antrum mucosa may help elucidate the miRNA regulatory mechanisms of the human stomach.
A small RNA library of stomach antrum tissue was sequenced using high-throughput SOLiD sequencing technology. The total read count for the gastric mucosa antrum region was greater than 618,000. After filtering and aligning using with MirBase, 148 mature miRNAs were identified in the gastric antrum tissue, totaling 3,181 quality reads; 63.5% (2,021) of the reads were concentrated in the eight most highly expressed miRNAs (hsa-mir-145, hsa-mir-29a, hsa-mir-29c, hsa-mir-21, hsa-mir-451a, hsa-mir-192, hsa-mir-191 and hsa-mir-148a). RT-PCR validated the expression profiles of seven of these highly expressed miRNAs and confirmed the sequencing results obtained using the SOLiD platform.
In comparison with other tissues, the antrum’s expression profile was unique with respect to the most highly expressed miRNAs, suggesting that this expression profile is specific to stomach antrum tissue. The current study provides a starting point for a more comprehensive understanding of the role of miRNAs in the regulation of the molecular processes of the human stomach.