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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013 Aug;1832(8):1294-303. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2013.03.021. Epub 2013 Apr 8.

miR-135a targets IRS2 and regulates insulin signaling and glucose uptake in the diabetic gastrocnemius skeletal muscle.

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CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Mall Road, Delhi-110 007, India.


Although aberrant miRNA signatures are associated with diabetes, yet, the status and role of altered miRNAs in the diabetic skeletal muscle is currently poorly understood. Here, we report that 41 miRNAs are altered in the diabetic gastrocnemius skeletal muscle and of these, miR-135a that is identified as a critical regulator of myogenesis, is significantly up-regulated. IRS2 is predicted as its potential putative target and its levels are down-regulated in the diabetic gastrocnemius skeletal muscle. In C2C12 cells, while miR-135a levels decreased during differentiation, IRS2 levels were up-regulated. miR-135a significantly reduced IRS2 protein levels and its 3'UTR luciferase reporter activity and these were blunted by the miR-135a inhibitor and mutation in the miR-135a binding site. Knock-down of endogenous miR-135a levels increased IRS2 at the mRNA and protein levels. miR-135a also attenuated insulin stimulated phosphorylation and activation of PI3Kp85α and Akt and glucose uptake. miR-135a levels were also found to be elevated in the human diabetic skeletal muscle. In-vivo silencing of miR-135a alleviated hyperglycemia, improved glucose tolerance and significantly restored the levels of IRS2 and p-Akt in the gastrocnemius skeletal muscle of db/db mice without any effect on their hepatic levels. These suggest that miR-135a targets IRS2 levels by binding to its 3'UTR and this interaction regulates skeletal muscle insulin signaling.

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