Protumorigenic effects of mir-145 loss in malignant pleural mesothelioma
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We identified a discrete number of microRNAs differentially expressed in benign or malignant mesothelial tissues. We focused on mir-145 whose levels were significantly downregulated in malignant mesothelial tissues and malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) cell lines as compared to benign tissues (pleura, peritoneum or cysts). We show that promoter hyper-methylation caused very low levels in MPM cell lines and specimens. Treatment of MPM cell lines with mir-145 agonists negatively modulated some protumorigenic properties of MPM cells, such as clonogenicity, cell migration and resistance to pemetrexed treatment. The main effector mechanism of the clonogenic death induced by mir-145 was that of accelerated senescence. We found that mir-145 targeted OCT4 via specific binding to its 3'-UTR. Increased intracellular levels of mir-145 decreased the levels of OCT4 and its target gene ZEB1, thereby counteracting the increase of OCT4 induced by pemetrexed treatment which is known to favor the development of chemoresistant cells. In line with this, reintroduction of OCT4 into mimic-145 treated cells counteracted the effects on clonogenicity and replicative senescence. This further supports the relevance of the mir-145-OCT4 interaction for the survival of MPM cells. The potential use of mir-145 expression levels to classify benign vs malignant mesothelial tissues and the differences between pemetrexed-induced senescence and that induced by the re-expression of mir-145 are discussed.
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