Silencing of miR-182 is associated with modulation of tumorigenesis through apoptosis induction in an experimental model of colorectal cancer

Lisa Perilli, Sofia Tessarollo, Laura Albertoni, Matteo Curtarello, Anna Pastò, Efrem Brunetti, Matteo Fassan, Massimo Rugge, Stefano Indraccolo, Alberto Amadori, Stefania Bortoluzzi, Paola Zanovello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: miR-182-5p (miR-182) is an oncogenic microRNA (miRNA) found in different tumor types and one of the most up-regulated miRNA in colorectal cancer (CRC). Although this microRNA is expressed in the early steps of tumor development, its role in driving tumorigenesis is unclear.

METHODS: The effects of miR-182 silencing on transcriptomic profile were investigated using two CRC cell lines characterized by different in vivo biological behavior, the MICOL-14h-tert cell line (dormant upon transfer into immunodeficient hosts) and its tumorigenic variant, MICOL-14tum. Apoptosis was studied by annexin/PI staining and cleaved Caspase-3/PARP analysis. The effect of miR-182 silencing on the tumorigenic potential was addressed in a xenogeneic model of MICOL-14tum transplant.

RESULTS: Endogenous miR-182 expression was higher in MICOL-14tum than in MICOL-14h-tert cells. Interestingly, miR-182 silencing had a strong impact on gene expression profile, and the positive regulation of apoptotic process was one of the most affected pathways. Accordingly, annexin/PI staining and caspase-3/PARP activation demonstrated that miR-182 treatment significantly increased apoptosis, with a prominent effect in MICOL-14tum cells. Moreover, a significant modulation of the cell cycle profile was exerted by anti-miR-182 treatment only in MICOL-14tum cells, where a significant increase in the fraction of cells in G0/G1 phases was observed. Accordingly, a significant growth reduction and a less aggressive histological aspect were observed in tumor masses generated by in vivo transfer of anti-miR-182-treated MICOL-14tum cells into immunodeficient hosts.

CONCLUSIONS: Altogether, these data indicate that increased miR-182 expression may promote cell proliferation, suppress the apoptotic pathway and ultimately confer aggressive traits on CRC cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number821
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalBMC Cancer
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 20 2019


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