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Int J Mol Sci. 2012 Nov 28;13(12):15955-66. doi: 10.3390/ijms131215955.

Differential expression profile of MicroRNAs during differentiation of cardiomyocytes exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls.

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State Key Laboratory of Reproductive Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Nanjing Maternity and Child Health Care Hospital Affiliated to Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China.


Exposure to persistent environmental pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), is a risk factor for the development of congenital heart defects. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been shown to be involved in cardiac development. The objective of this study was to investigate changes in miRNA expression profiles during the differentiation of cardiomyocytes exposed to PCBs. For that purpose, PCBs (Aroclor 1254) at a concentration of 2.5 μmol/L were added on day 0 of differentiation of P19 mouse embryonal carcinoma cells into cardiac myocytes. The relative expression of miRNA genes was determined by miRNA microarray and real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (real-time RT-PCR) analyses. The microarray results revealed that 45 miRNAs, of which 14 were upregulated and 31 were downregulated, were differentially expressed in P19 cells treated with PCBs compared with control cells. The miRNA expression data was validated with real-time RT-PCR. The expression of certain potential target genes (Wnt1) was found to be reduced in P19 cells treated with PCBs, whereas the expression of other potential predicted target genes (GSK3β) was increased. Our results demonstrate a critical role of miRNAs in mediating the effect of PCBs during the differentiation of P19 cells into cardiac myocytes.

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