Author(s): Yu F, Deng H, Yao H, Liu Q, Su F,
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Abstract Accumulating evidence indicates that a sub-population of cancer cells with stem-like properties, termed tumor-initiating cells (T-ICs), exist in many different kinds of malignancies, which have a pivotal role in tumorigenesis, tumor progression, metastasis and post-treatment relapse. However, how the stem-like properties of T-ICs are regulated remains obscure. Our previous study showed that reduction of let-7 microRNA (miRNA) in breast tumor-initiating cells (BT-ICs) contributes to the maintenance of their self-renewal capacity and undifferentiated status. In this study we show the effect of mir-30 reduction on the stem-like features of BT-ICs. Similar to let-7, mir-30 is reduced in BT-ICs, and the protein level of Ubc9 (ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme 9) and ITGB3 (integrin beta3), the target genes of mir-30, is markedly upregulated. Enforced constitutive expression of mir-30 in BT-ICs inhibits their self-renewal capacity by reducing Ubc9, and induces apoptosis through silencing ITGB3. On the contrary, blocking the miRNA with a specific antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) in differentiated breast cancer cells revived their self-renewal capacity. Furthermore, ectopic expression of mir-30 in BT-IC xenografts reduces tumorigenesis and lung metastasis in nonobese diabetic/severe combined immunodeficient mice, whereas blocking mir-30 expression enhances tumorigenesis and metastasis. Together, our data suggest mir-30 as one of the important miRNAs in regulating the stem-like features of T-ICs.
This article was published in Oncogene
and referenced in Journal of Cytology & Histology