An Integrated Expression Profiling Reveals Target Genes of TGF-β and TNF-α Possibly Mediated by MicroRNAs in Lung Cancer Cells

Saito, Akira; Suzuki, Hiroshi I.; Horie, Masafumi; Ohshima, Mitsuhiro; Morishita, Yasuyuki; Abiko, Yoshimitsu; Nagase, Takahide
February 2013
PLoS ONE;Feb2013, Vol. 8 Issue 2, p1
Academic Journal
EMT (epithelial-mesenchymal transition) is crucial for cancer cells to acquire invasive phenotypes. In A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells, TGF-β elicited EMT in Smad-dependent manner and TNF-α accelerated this process, as confirmed by cell morphology, expression of EMT markers, capacity of gelatin lysis and cell invasion. TNF-α stimulated the phosphorylation of Smad2 linker region, and this effect was attenuated by inhibiting MEK or JNK pathway. Comprehensive expression analysis unraveled genes differentially regulated by TGF-β and TNF-α, such as cytokines, chemokines, growth factors and ECM (extracellular matrices), suggesting the drastic change in autocrine/paracrine signals as well as cell-to-ECM interactions. Integrated analysis of microRNA signature enabled us to identify a subset of genes, potentially regulated by microRNAs. Among them, we confirmed TGF-β-mediated induction of miR-23a in lung epithelial cell lines, target genes of which were further identified by gene expression profiling. Combined with in silico approaches, we determined HMGN2 as a downstream target of miR-23a. These findings provide a line of evidence that the effects of TGF-β and TNF-α were partially mediated by microRNAs, and shed light on the complexity of molecular events elicited by TGF-β and TNF-α.


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