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Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2009 Jul;48(7):569-82. doi: 10.1002/gcc.20666.

Decreased expression of miR-125b and miR-100 in oral cancer cells contributes to malignancy.

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Department of Human Genetics, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.


Altered microRNA (miRNA) expression profiles have been observed in numerous malignancies, including oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). However, their role in disease is not entirely clear. Several genetic aberrations are characteristic of OSCC, with amplification of chromosomal band 11q13 and loss of distal 11q being among the most prevalent. It is not known if the expression levels of miRNAs in these regions are altered or whether they play a role in disease. We hypothesize that the expression of miRNAs mapping to 11q are altered in OSCC because of loss or amplification of chromosomal material, and that this contributes to the development and progression of OSCC. We found that miR-125b and miR-100 are down-regulated in OSCC tumor and cell lines, and that transfecting cells with exogenous miR-125b and miR-100 significantly reduced cell proliferation and modified the expression of target and nontarget genes, including some that are overexpressed in radioresistant OSCC cells. In conclusion, the down-regulation of miR-125b and miR-100 in OSCC appears to play an important role in the development and/or progression of disease and may contribute to the loss of sensitivity to ionizing radiation.

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