[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To examine the role of microRNA-142-3p/5p (miR-142-3p/5p) in the development of autoimmunity in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
MicroRNA-142-3p/5p expression levels were determined by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and potential target genes were verified using luciferase reporter gene assays. The effects of miR-142-3p/5p on T cell function were assessed by transfection with miR-142-3p/5p inhibitors or mimics. Histone modifications and methylation levels within a putative regulatory region of the miR-142 locus were detected by chromatin immunoprecipitation assay and bisulfite sequencing, respectively.
We confirmed that miR-142-3p and miR-142-5p were significantly down-regulated in SLE CD4+ T cells compared with healthy controls and observed that miR-142-3p/5p levels were inversely correlated with the putative SLE-related targets signaling lymphocytic activation molecule-associated protein (SAP), CD84, and interleukin-10 (IL-10). We demonstrated that miR-142-3p and miR-142-5p directly inhibit SAP, CD84, and IL-10 translation, and that reduced miR-142-3p/5p expression in CD4+ T cells can significantly increase protein levels of these target genes. Furthermore, inhibiting miR-142-3p/5p in healthy donor CD4+ T cells caused T cell overactivation and B cell hyperstimulation, whereas overexpression of miR-142-3p/5p in SLE CD4+ T cells had the opposite effect. We also observed that the decrease in miR-142 expression in SLE CD4+ T cells correlated with changes to histone modifications and DNA methylation levels upstream of the miR-142 precursor sequence.
The results of this study indicate that reduced expression of miR-142-3p/5p in the CD4+ T cells of patients with SLE causes T cell activity and B cell hyperstimulation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To identify microRNA genes with abnormal expression in the CD4+ T cells of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and to determine the role of microRNA-126 (miR-126) in the etiology of SLE.
MicroRNA expression patterns in CD4+ T cells from patients with SLE and healthy control subjects were analyzed by microRNA microarray and stem loop quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Luciferase reporter gene assays were performed to identify miR-126 targets. Dnmt1, CD11a, and CD70 messenger RNA and protein levels were determined by real-time qPCR, Western blotting, and flow cytometry. CD11a, CD70, and EGFL7 promoter methylation levels were detected by bisulfite sequencing. IgG levels in T cell-B cell cocultures were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
The expression of 11 microRNA was significantly increased or decreased in CD4+ T cells from patients with SLE relative to that in CD4+ T cells from control subjects. Among these, miR-126 was up-regulated, and its degree of overexpression was inversely correlated with Dnmt1 protein levels. We demonstrated that miR-126 directly inhibits Dnmt1 translation via interaction with its 3'-untranslated region, and that overexpression of miR-126 in CD4+ T cells can significantly reduce Dnmt1 protein levels. The overexpression of miR-126 in CD4+ T cells from healthy donors caused the demethylation and up-regulation of genes encoding CD11a and CD70, thereby causing T cell and B cell hyperactivity. The inhibition of miR-126 in CD4+ T cells from patients with SLE had the opposite effects. Expression of the miR-126 host gene EGFL7 was also up-regulated in CD4+ T cells from patients with SLE, possibly in a hypomethylation-dependent manner.
Our data suggest that miR-126 regulates DNA methylation in CD4+ T cells and contributes to T cell autoreactivity in SLE by directly targeting Dnmt1.