Author(s): Shi Z, Zhang T, Zhang L, Zhao J, Gong J,
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Abstract INTRODUCTION AND HYPOTHESIS: The aim of this study was to compare the expression of microRNA (miR)-221, miR-222, and estrogen receptor α (ERα) in the uterosacral ligaments of women with and without pelvic organ prolapse (POP). METHODS: Histologically confirmed full-thickness uterosacral ligament biopsies were procured during hysterectomies from 40 POP patients and 40 postmenopausal women without prolapse. Expression of miR-221/222 was determined by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and ERα protein expression was analyzed by Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. RESULTS: The mean expression levels of miR-221/222 both increased by approximately twofold in women with POP relative to controls, while ERα protein levels in POP patients were significantly lower than controls. Negative correlations were observed between ERα protein expression and both miR-221 (r = -0.8542) and miR-222 (r = -0.861) in POP patients. CONCLUSIONS: Elevated miR-221/222 expression levels are associated with, and may be responsible for, reduced ERα expression in the cervical portion of uterosacral ligaments of patients with POP. MiR-221/222 may serve as potential therapeutic targets for POP.
This article was published in Int Urogynecol J
and referenced in Journal of Molecular and Genetic Medicine