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J Appl Physiol (1985). 2007 Jan;102(1):306-13. Epub 2006 Sep 28.

MicroRNA-1 and microRNA-133a expression are decreased during skeletal muscle hypertrophy.

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Department of Physiology, University of Kentucky Medical Center, 800 Rose St., Lexington, KY 40536-0298, USA.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of highly conserved, noncoding RNAs involved in posttranscriptional gene regulation. A small number of muscle-specific miRNAs have been identified and shown to have a role in myoblast proliferation and differentiation as well as embryonic muscle growth. The primary objective of the present study was to determine the expression level of the muscle-specific miRNAs in the soleus and plantaris muscles and whether their expression in the plantaris was altered in response to functional overload. Of the miRNAs examined, only miRNA-206 was differentially expressed between soleus and plantaris muscles, as reflected by the sevenfold higher expression in the soleus for both the primary miRNA (pri-miRNA) and mature miRNA (miR). Following 7 days of functional overload, transcript levels for both pri-miRNA-1-2 and pri-miRNA-133a-2 increased by approximately 2-fold, whereas pri-miRNA-206 levels were elevated 18.3-fold. In contrast, expression of miR-1 and miR-133a were downregulated by approximately 50% following overload. The discrepancy between pri-miRNA and miR expression following overload was not explained by a change in the expression of components of the miRNA biogenesis pathway, since Drosha and Exportin-5 transcript levels were significantly increased by 50% in response to functional overload, whereas Dicer expression remained unchanged. These results are the first to report alterations in expression of muscle-specific miRNAs in adult skeletal muscle and suggest miRNAs may have a role in the adaptation to functional overload.

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