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FEBS Lett. 2018 Dec;592(24):4051-4065. doi: 10.1002/1873-3468.13282. Epub 2018 Nov 15.

miR-342-3p promotes osteogenic differentiation via targeting ATF3.

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Department of Histology and Embryology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Tianjin Medical University, China.
Department of Orthopaedics Surgery, Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin Medical University, China.
School of Medical Imaging, Tianjin Medical University, China.


Through their multiple targets, microRNAs (miRNAs) are involved in numerous physiological and pathological processes. In this study, miR-342-3p was found to be deregulated with ossification of ligament or osteoporosis. We demonstrate that silencing miR-342-3p impairs osteoblast activity and matrix mineralization, while over expression of miR-342-3p promotes osteoblast differentiation significantly. Moreover, miR-342-3p directly targets activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3), which inhibits transcription of pro-osteogenic differentiation-associated genes. In addition, there exists a higher frequency of methylation at the CpG island of the Enah/Vasp-Like (EVL) locus in undifferentiated pre-osteoblasts; however, demethylation of the EVL CpG island induces over expression of miR-342-3p during osteogenic differentiation. This study suggests that miR-342-3p may serves as a potential marker for diagnosis and treatment of ossification of ligament and osteoporosis.


ATF3; microRNA; ossification; osteogenic differentiation; osteoporosis

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