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RNA. 2011 Aug;17(8):1451-60. doi: 10.1261/rna.2664111. Epub 2011 Jun 21.

microRNAs modulate iPS cell generation.

Author information

1
Program for RNA Biology, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, La Jolla, California 92037, USA.

Abstract

Although induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) hold great promise for customized regenerative medicine, the molecular basis of reprogramming is largely unknown. Overcoming barriers that maintain cell identities is a critical step in the reprogramming of differentiated cells. Since microRNAs (miRNAs) modulate target genes tissue-specifically, we reasoned that distinct mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF)-enriched miRNAs post-transcriptionally modulate proteins that function as reprogramming barriers. Inhibiting these miRNAs should influence cell signaling to lower those barriers. Here we show that depleting miR-21 and miR-29a enhances reprogramming efficiency in MEFs. We also show that the p53 and ERK1/2 pathways are regulated by miR-21 and miR-29a and function in reprogramming. In addition, we provide the first evidence that c-Myc enhances reprogramming partly by repressing MEF-enriched miRNAs, such as miR-21 and miR-29a. Our results demonstrate the significance of miRNA function in regulating multiple signaling networks involved in iPSC generation. These studies should facilitate development of clinically applicable reprogramming strategies.

PMID:
21693621
PMCID:
PMC3153970
DOI:
10.1261/rna.2664111
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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