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: 8.29). 09/2011; 67(2):122-31. DOI: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2011-200089
Source: PubMed


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.

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    • "VEGF is a well-defined ARDS-associated candidate gene, and is a target of miR-126 [13,14]. The miRNA profiling was used to identify the miRNAs involved in the pathogenesis of various lung diseases such as ventilator-induced lung injury [15], bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) [16,17], chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) [18,19], and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) [20,21]. However, it remains to be investigated whether miRNAs are involved in the pathogenesis of ARDS. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is characterized by pulmonary epithelial injury and extensive inflammation of the pulmonary parenchyma. Systematic analyses of microRNA (miRNA) and mRNA expression profiling in ARDS provide insights into understanding of molecular mechanisms of the pathogenesis of ARDS. The objective of this study was to identify miRNA and mRNA interactions in a rat model of ARDS by combining miRNA and mRNA microarray analyses. Methods Rat model of ARDS was induced by saline lavage and mechanical ventilation. The expression profiles of both mRNAs and miRNAs in rat ARDS model were performed by microarray analyses. Microarray data were further verified by quantitative RT-PCR. Functional annotation on dys-regulated mRNAs and miRNAs was carried out by bioinformatics analysis. Results The expression of 27 miRNAs and 37 mRNAs were found to be significantly changed. The selected miRNAs and genes were further verified by quantitative real-time PCR. The down-regulated miRNAs included miR-24, miR-26a, miR-126, and Let-7a, b, c, f. The up-regulated miRNAs were composed of miR-344, miR-346, miR-99a, miR-127, miR-128b, miR-135b, and miR-30a/b. Gene ontology and functional annotation analyses indicated that up-regulated mRNAs, such as Apc, Timp1, and Sod2, were involved in the regulation of apoptosis. Bioinformatics analysis showed the inverse correlation of altered miRNAs with the expression of their predicted target mRNAs. While Sod2 was inversely correlated with Let-7a, b, c, f., Ebf1 and Apc were inversely correlated with miR-24 and miR-26a, respectively. miR-26a, miR-346, miR-135b, miR-30a/b, miR-344, and miR-18a targeted multiple altered mRNAs. Gabrb1, Sod2, Eif2ak1, Fbln5, and Tspan8 were targeted by multiple altered miRNAs. Conclusion The expressions of miRNAs and mRNAs were altered in a rat model of ARDS. The identified miRNA-mRNA pairs may play critical roles in the pathogenesis of ARDS.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · BMC Medical Genomics
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    • "In chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) both over- and under-expression of β-catenin has been associated with disease (45,46). Moreover, a recent study looking at global gene expression changes in COPD noted an enrichment of Wnt pathway genes; importantly, the majority of both canonical and non-canonical pathway components were simultaneously downregulated (47). This study further emphasizes the complexities of Wnt signaling in organogenesis. "
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    ABSTRACT: The DNA damage protein and transcription factor Atmin (Asciz) is required for both lung tubulogenesis and ciliogenesis. Like the lungs, kidneys contain a tubular network that is critical for their function and in addition, renal ciliary dysfunction has been implicated in the pathogenesis of cystic kidney disease. Using the Atmin mouse mutant Gasping6 (Gpg6), we investigated kidney development and found it severely disrupted with reduced branching morphogenesis, resulting in fewer epithelial structures being formed. Unexpectedly, transcriptional levels of key cilia associated genes were not altered in AtminGpg6/Gpg6 kidneys. Instead, Gpg6 homozygous kidneys exhibited altered cytoskeletal organization and modulation of Wnt signaling pathway molecules, including β-catenin and non-canonical Wnt/planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway factors, such as Daam2 and Vangl2. Wnt signaling is important for kidney development and perturbation of Wnt signaling pathways can result in cystic, and other, renal abnormalities. In common with other PCP pathway mutants, AtminGpg6/Gpg6 mice displayed a shortened rostral-caudal axis and mis-oriented cell division. Moreover, intercrosses between AtminGpg6/+ and Vangl2Lp/+ mice revealed a genetic interaction between Atmin and Vangl2. Thus we show for the first time that Atmin is critical for normal kidney development and we present evidence that mechanistically, Atmin modifies Wnt signaling pathways, specifically placing it as a novel effector molecule in the non-canonical Wnt/PCP pathway. The identification of a novel modulator of Wnt signaling has important implications for understanding the pathobiology of renal disease.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · Human Molecular Genetics
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    • "Furthermore, miRNAs regulate mRNA expression, and mRNA (transcriptome) profiles relevant to COPD pathogenesis have been identified [18-23]. MiRNA profiles in lung from patients with COPD have shown differences in miRNA expression in relation to susceptibility to COPD [24,25], when comparing moderate/severe COPD patients with non-COPD subjects [24,25]. Here we aimed to identify lung miRNAs associated with COPD severity, and demonstrate miRNA regulation of genes that may be implicated in the progression of COPD. "
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    ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs (MiRNA) are small non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression. The aim of this study was to identify miRNAs differentially expressed between mild and moderately emphysematous lung, as well as their functional target mRNAs. Resected lung from patients with COPD undergoing lung cancer surgery was profiled using miRNA (Agilent Human miRNA profiler G4470 V1.01) and mRNA (OperonV2.0) microarrays. Cells of lung origin (BEAS-2B and HFL1) were profiled using mRNA microarrays (Illumina HumanHT-12 V3) after in vitro manipulation. COPD patients had mean (SD) age 68 (6) years, FEV1 72 (17)% predicted and gas transfer (KCO) 70 (10)% predicted. Five miRNAs (miR-34c, miR-34b, miR-149, miR-133a and miR-133b) were significantly down-regulated in lung from patients with moderate compared to mild emphysema as defined by gas transfer (p < 0.01). In vitro upregulation of miR-34c in respiratory cells led to down-regulation of predicted target mRNAs, including SERPINE1, MAP4K4, ZNF3, ALDOA and HNF4A. The fold change in ex-vivo expression of all five predicted target genes inversely correlated with that of miR-34c in emphysematous lung, but this relationship was strongest for SERPINE1 (p = 0.05). Differences in miRNA expression are associated with emphysema severity in COPD patients. MiR-34c modulates expression of its putative target gene, SERPINE1, in vitro in respiratory cell lines and ex vivo in emphysematous lung tissue.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2014 · BMC Genomics
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