5 years ago

RXFP1 expression is regulated by miR-144-3p in Fibroblasts from Patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis

Dutta, H., Kass, Bahudhanapati, Zhang, S. B., D. J., Tan, J. A., J., Y., Strock
Relaxin has been considered as a potential therapy for patients with pulmonary fibrosis. We have previously shown, however, that a potential limitation of relaxin-based therapy for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) is the loss of expression of the relaxin receptor Relaxin/Insulin Like Receptor 1 (RXFP1) expression in fibroblasts. The molecular mechanism for RXFP1 down-regulation in IPF patients remains unclear. To determine whether microRNAs play a role in RXFP1 gene expression, we employed a bioinformatics approach to identify microRNAs (miRs) that are predicted to target RXFP1. By in silico analysis we identified a putative target site in the RXFP1 mRNA for the miR-144 family. We found that miR-144-3p was upregulated in IPF fibroblasts compared to donor lung fibroblast controls. Forced miR-144-3p mimic expression reduced RXFP1 mRNA and protein levels and increased expression of the myofibroblast marker alpha-smooth muscle actin (-SMA) in donor lung fibroblasts. IPF lung fibroblasts transfected with a miR-144-3p inhibitor increased RXFP1 expression and reduced -SMA expression. A lentiviral luciferase reporter vector carrying the WT 3'UTR of RXFP1 was repressed more in lung fibroblasts whereas vector carrying a mutated miR-144-3p binding site exhibited less sensitivity to endogenous miR-144-3p expression, suggesting that RXFP1 is a direct target of miR-144-3p. Thus, miR-144-3p is highly expressed in IPF fibroblasts and acts as a negative regulator of RXFP1 protein expression.

Publisher URL: http://biorxiv.org/cgi/content/short/159459v1

DOI: 10.1101/159459

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