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Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2010 Oct;299(4):H1077-82. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00212.2010. Epub 2010 Jul 23.

Diazoxide potentiates mesenchymal stem cell survival via NF-kappaB-dependent miR-146a expression by targeting Fas.

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Department of Pathology and Lab Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 45267, USA.


We have previously reported that preconditioning of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) with diazoxide (DZ) significantly improved cell survival via NF-κB signaling. Since micro-RNAs (miRNAs) are critical regulators of a wide variety of biological events, including apoptosis, proliferation, and differentiation, it is likely that DZ-induced survival is mediated by miRNAs. Here we show that miR-146a expressed during preconditioning with DZ is a key regulator of stem cell survival. Treatment of MSCs with DZ (200 μM) markedly increased miR-146a expression and promoted cell survival, as evaluated by lactate dehydrogenase release and transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling staining. Interestingly, blocking NF-κB by IKK-γ NEMO binding domain inhibitor peptide did not induce miR-146a expression, indicating NF-κB regulates miR-146a expression. Moreover, blockade of miR-146a expression by antisense miR-146a inhibitor abolished DZ-induced cytoprotective effects, suggesting a critical role of miR-146a in MSC survival. Computational analysis found a consensus putative target site of miR-146a relevant to apoptosis in the 3' untranslated region of Fas mRNA. The role of Fas as a target gene was substantiated by abrogation of miR-146a, which markedly increased Fas protein expression. This was verified by luciferase reporter assay, which showed that forced expression of miR-146a downregulated Fas expression via targeting its 3'-UTR of this gene. Taken together, these data demonstrated that cytoprotection afforded by preconditioning of MSCs with DZ was regulated by miR-146a induction, which may be a novel therapeutic target in cardiac ischemic diseases.

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