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Mol Med Rep. 2018 Jan;17(1):1275-1282. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2017.8006. Epub 2017 Nov 7.

microRNA‑211 suppresses the growth and metastasis of cervical cancer by directly targeting ZEB1.

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Department of Gynaecology, Songgang People's Hospital, Shenzhen, Guangdong 518105, P.R. China.


Of gynecological cancers, cervical cancer has the second highest incidence globally and is a major cause of cancer‑associated mortality in women. An increasing number of studies have reported that microRNAs (miRNAs) have important roles in cervical cancer carcinogenesis and progression through regulation of various critical protein‑coding genes. The aim of the present study was to investigate the expression and biological roles of miRNA‑211 (miR‑211) in cervical cancer and its underlying molecular mechanism. The results of reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT‑qPCR) demonstrated that the expression levels of miR‑211 in cervical cancer tissues and cell lines were significantly lower compared with adjacent normal tissues and the normal human cervix epithelial cell line, respectively. Furthermore, upregulation of miR‑211 by transfection with miR‑211 mimics inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion of cervical cancer, as determined by MTT, Transwell and Matrigel assays, respectively. Bioinformatics analysis and luciferase reporter assay results indicated that zinc finger E‑box binding homeobox 1 (ZEB1) may be a direct target gene of miR‑211. In addition, RT‑qPCR and western blot analysis results demonstrated that miR‑211 overexpression markedly reduced ZEB1 expression at mRNA and protein levels in cervical cancer. Furthermore, the effects of ZEB1 downregulation on the proliferation, migration and invasion of cervical cancer cells were similar to those induced by miR‑211 overexpression. These results indicate that miR‑211 may act as a tumor suppressor in cervical cancer by directly targeting ZEB1. Therefore, miR‑211/ZEB1‑based targeted therapy may represent a potential novel treatment for patients with cervical cancer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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