Gene expression networks in COPD: microRNA and mRNA regulation

Department of Medicine, Dorothy M. Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute, The Ohio State University Medical Center, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA.
Thorax (Impact Factor: 8.56). 09/2011; 67(2):122-31. DOI: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2011-200089
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The mechanisms underlying chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) remain unclear. MicroRNAs (miRNAs or miRs) are small non-coding RNA molecules that modulate the levels of specific genes and proteins. Identifying expression patterns of miRNAs in COPD may enhance our understanding of the mechanisms of disease. A study was undertaken to determine if miRNAs are differentially expressed in the lungs of smokers with and without COPD. miRNA and mRNA expression were compared to enrich for biological networks relevant to the pathogenesis of COPD.
Lung tissue from smokers with no evidence of obstructive lung disease (n=9) and smokers with COPD (n=26) was examined for miRNA and mRNA expression followed by validation. We then examined both miRNA and mRNA expression to enrich for relevant biological pathways.
70 miRNAs and 2667 mRNAs were differentially expressed between lung tissue from subjects with COPD and smokers without COPD. miRNA and mRNA expression profiles enriched for biological pathways that may be relevant to the pathogenesis of COPD including the transforming growth factor β, Wnt and focal adhesion pathways. miR-223 and miR-1274a were the most affected miRNAs in subjects with COPD compared with smokers without obstruction. miR-15b was increased in COPD samples compared with smokers without obstruction and localised to both areas of emphysema and fibrosis. miR-15b was differentially expressed within GOLD classes of COPD. Expression of SMAD7, which was validated as a target for miR-15b, was decreased in bronchial epithelial cells in COPD.
miRNA and mRNA are differentially expressed in individuals with COPD compared with smokers without obstruction. Investigating these relationships may further our understanding of the mechanisms of disease.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a series of 18-25 nucleotides length non-coding RNAs, which play critical roles in tumorigenesis. Previous study has shown that microRNA-1274a (miR-1274a) is upregulated in human gastric cancer. However, its role in gastric cancer progression remains poorly understood. Therefore, the current study was aimed to examine the effect of miR-1274a on gastric cancer cells. We found that miR-1274a was overexpressed in gastric cancer tissues or gastric cancer cells including HGC27, MGC803, AGS, and SGC-7901 by qRT-PCR analysis. Transfection of miR-1274a markedly promoted gastric cancer cells proliferation and migration as well as induced epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of cancer cells. Our further examination identified FOXO4 as a target of miR-1274a, which did not influence FOXO4 mRNA expression but significantly inhibited FOXO4 protein expression. Moreover, miR-1274a overexpression activated PI3K/Akt signaling and upregulated cyclin D1, MMP-2 and MMP-9 expressions. With tumor xenografts in mice models, we also showed that miR-1274a promoted tumorigenesis of gastric cancer in vivo. In all, our study demonstrated that miR-1274a prompted gastric cancer cells growth and migration through dampening FOXO4 expression thus provided a potential target for human gastric cancer therapy. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 03/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.bbrc.2015.02.160 · 2.28 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The construction and application of biological network models is an approach that offers a holistic way to understand biological processes involved in disease. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a progressive inflammatory disease of the airways for which therapeutic options currently are limited after diagnosis, even in its earliest stage. COPD network models are important tools to better understand the biological components and processes underlying initial disease development. With the increasing amounts of literature that are now available, crowdsourcing approaches offer new forms of collaboration for researchers to review biological findings, which can be applied to the construction and verification of complex biological networks. We report the construction of 50 biological network models relevant to lung biology and early COPD using an integrative systems biology and collaborative crowd-verification approach. By combining traditional literature curation with a data-driven approach that predicts molecular activities from transcriptomics data, we constructed an initial COPD network model set based on a previously published non-diseased lung-relevant model set. The crowd was given the opportunity to enhance and refine the networks on a website ( and to add mechanistic detail, as well as critically review existing evidence and evidence added by other users, so as to enhance the accuracy of the biological representation of the processes captured in the networks. Finally, scientists and experts in the field discussed and refined the networks during an in-person jamboree meeting. Here, we describe examples of the changes made to three of these networks: Neutrophil Signaling, Macrophage Signaling, and Th1-Th2 Signaling. We describe an innovative approach to biological network construction that combines literature and data mining and a crowdsourcing approach to generate a comprehensive set of COPD-relevant models that can be used to help understand the mechanisms related to lung pathobiology. Registered users of the website can freely browse and download the networks.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the effect of a single nucleotide polymorphism (rs2910164) in the miR-146a precursor on the expression level of miR-146a, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX2), and production of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) in lung tissue harvested from smokers with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, as well as the lung function and disease stages from the same patient population. One-hundred and sixty-eight smokers with diagnosed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were recruited. The patients were genotyped for rs2910164 polymorphism using Sanger sequencing, and their lung function/disease stages were evaluated following Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) criteria. Meanwhile, messenger ribonucleic acid and protein expression levels of miR-146a and COX2 as well as PGE2 production were determined in 66 lung tissue samples collected in the patients who received surgical treatment. We confirmed that COX2 is a validated target of miR-146a in human fibroblast cells, and identified the differential expression patterns of miR-146a and COX2 in each rs2910164 genotype group. We observed a significant association between rs2910164 in miR-146a and the levels of either COX2 or PGE2 using real-time polymerase chain reaction and Western blot. Consistently, we were able to demonstrate that the rs2910164 single nucleotide polymorphism has a functional effect on the baseline lung function in the study population. In the present study, the rs2910164 CC and GC genotype was found to be associated with an improved lung function and milder disease stages, at least partially, mediated by its ability to increase in COX2 expression and PGE2 production.
    International Journal of COPD 03/2015; 10:463-473. DOI:10.2147/COPD.S74345 · 2.73 Impact Factor