MicroRNA 335 is required for differentiation of malignant glioma cells induced by activation of cAMP/protein kinase A pathway

Minfeng Shu, Yuehan Zhou, Wenbo Zhu, Haipeng Zhang, Sihan Wu, Jingkao Chen, Guangmei Yan

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

Glioma is the most common malignant cancer affecting the central nerve system, with dismal prognosis. Differentiation-inducing therapy is a novel strategy that has been preliminarily proved effective against malignant glioma. We have reported previously that activation of cAMP/protein kinase A (PKA) pathway is capable of inducing glioma cell differentiation, characterized by astrocyte-like shape and dramatic induction of astrocyte biomarker glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). However, little progress has been made on molecular mechanisms related. Here we demonstrate that microRNA 335 (miR-335) is responsible for the glioma cell differentiation stimulated by activation of cAMP/PKA pathway. In the cAMP elevator cholera toxin-induced differentiation model of rat C6 glioma cells, miR- 335 was significantly up-regulated, which was mimicked by other typical cAMP/PKA pathway activators (e.g., forskolin, dibutyryl-cAMP) and abolished by PKA-specific inhibitor (9R,10S,12S)-2,3,9,10, 11,12-hexahydro-10-hydroxy-9-methyl- 1-oxo-9,12-epoxy-1H-diindolo[1,2,3-fg: 3′,2′,1′-kl]pyrrolo[3,4-i] [1,6]benzodiazocine-10-carboxylic acid, hexyl ester (KT5720). In an assay measuring gain and loss of miR-335 function, exogenetic miR-335 resulted in induction of GFAP, whereas miR-335 specific inhibitor antagomir-335 violently blocked cholera toxin-induced GFAP up-regulation. It is noteworthy that in human U87-MG glioma cells and human primary culture glioma cells, miR-335 also mediated cholera toxin-induced differentiation. Taken together, our findings suggest that miR-335 is potently required for differentiation of malignant glioma cells induced by cAMP/PKA pathway activation, and a single microRNA may act as an important fate determinant to control the differentiation status of malignant gliomas, which has provided a new insight into differentiation-inducing therapy against malignant gliomas.

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