Epigenetic regulation of miRNA-124 and multiple downstream targets is associated with treatment response in myeloid malignancies

Hong Bin Liu, Phillip Pattie, Sahan Chandrasekara, Andrew Spencer, Anthony Edwin Dear

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Epigenetic regulation of microRNA (miRNA)expression has recently been implicated in the pathogenesis of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). Particular interest hasfocused on miRNA-124 expression, which is inhibited in MDS and has recently been demonstrated to be upregulated in response to epigenetic treatment (EGT). Previous studies have determined the in vitro and in vivo expression of miRNA-124and several molecular targets, including cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) 4, CDK6 and enhancer of zeste homolog 2(EZH2), in order to elucidate the molecular mechanisms associated with the miRNA-124-mediated therapeutic response toEGT in MDS and identify additional potential biomarkers of early EGT treatment response in myeloid malignancies. In vitro studies in the HL60 leukemic cell line identified upregulation of miRNA-124 expression in response to single-agent EGTwith either azacytidine (AZA) or the histone deacetylase inhibitor panobinostat (LBH589). Combination EGT with AZA and LBH589 resulted in significant additive induction of miRNA-124 expression. Expression of downstream targets of miRNA-124, including CDK4, CDK6 and EZH2, in response to single agent and combined EGT was determined in HL60 cells.Single and combination EGT treatment resulted in inhibition of CDK4, CDK6 and EZH2 expression with combination EGT resulting in a significant and additive inhibitory effect. In vivo studies using peripheral blood mononuclear cells from patients receiving combination EGT for high risk MDS or acute myeloid leukemia demonstrated significant induction of miRNA‑124and inhibition CDK4 and CDK6 messenger (m)RNA expressionin patients that responded to combination EGT. A trend to inhibitedEZH2 mRNA expression was also identified in responseto combination EGT. Overall, the present observations identify a potential molecular mechanism for miRNA-124-mediated response to EGT involving regulation of CDK4, CDK6 and EZH2 expression. In addition, the present findings further qualify miRNA-124 as a possible biomarker of early response to EGT in myeloid malignancies and potentially a valid therapeutic target, together with CDK4, CDK6 and EZH2.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2175-2180
Number of pages6
JournalOncology Letters
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016

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