MicroRNA (miRNA)-to-miRNA Regulation of programmed cell death 4 (PDCD4)

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Molecular and Cellular Biology, 2019, 39 (18)
Issue Date:
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Copyright © 2019 Ajuyah et al. The regulation of tumor suppressor genes by microRNAs (miRNAs) is often demonstrated as a one-miRNA-to-one-target relationship. However, given the large number of miRNA sites within a 3= untranslated region (UTR), most targets likely undergo miRNA cooperation or combinatorial action. Programmed cell death 4 (PDCD4), an important tumor suppressor, prevents neoplastic events and is commonly downregulated in cancer. This study investigates the relationship between miRNA 21 (miR-21) and miR-499 in regulating PDCD4. This was explored using miRNA overexpression, mutational analysis of the PDCD4 3= UTR to assess regulation at each miRNA site, and 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) calculations for combinatorial behavior. We demonstrate that the first miR-499 binding site within PDCD4 is inactive, but the two remaining sites are both required for PDCD4 suppression. Additionally, the binding of miR-21 to PDCD4 influenced miR-499 activity through an increase in its silencing potency and stabilization of its mature form. Furthermore, adjoining miRNA sites more than 35 nucleotides (nt) apart could potentially regulate thousands of 3= UTRs, similar to that observed between miR-21 and miR-499. The regulation of PDCD4 serves as a unique example of regulatory action by multiple miRNAs. This relationship was predicted to occur on thousands of targets and may represent a wider mode of miRNA regulation.
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