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Am J Pathol. 2008 Jul;173(1):242-52. doi: 10.2353/ajpath.2008.080009.

MicroRNA-mediated down-regulation of PRDM1/Blimp-1 in Hodgkin/Reed-Sternberg cells: a potential pathogenetic lesion in Hodgkin lymphomas.

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Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Joan and Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York 10021, USA.


PRDM1/Blimp-1, a master regulator in terminal B-cell differentiation, has been recently identified as a tumor suppressor target for mutational inactivation in diffuse large B-cell lymphomas of the activated B-cell type. Our studies here demonstrate that PRDM1/blimp-1 is also a target for microRNA (miRNA)-mediated down-regulation by miR-9 and let-7a in Hodgkin/Reed-Sternberg (HRS) cells of Hodgkin lymphoma (HL). MiRNA expression profiling by direct miRNA cloning demonstrated that both of these miRNAs are among the most highly expressed in cultured HRS cells. These miRNAs functionally targeted specific binding sites in the 3' untranslated region of PRDM1/blimp-1 mRNA and repressed luciferase reporter activities through repression of translation. In addition, high levels of miR-9 and let-7a in HL cell lines correlated with low levels of PRDM1/Blimp-1. Similar to their in vitro counterparts, the majority of HRS cells in primary HL cases showed weak or no PRDM1/Blimp-1 expression. Over-expression of miR-9 or let-7a reduced PRDM1/Blimp-1 levels in U266 cells by 30% to 50%, whereas simultaneous inhibition of their activities in L428 cells resulted in an approximately 2.6-fold induction in PRDM1/Blimp-1. MiRNA-mediated down-regulation of PRDM1/Blimp-1 may contribute to the phenotype maintenance and pathogenesis of HRS cells by interfering with normal B-cell terminal differentiation, thus representing a novel molecular lesion, as well as a potential therapeutic target in HL.

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