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Haematologica. 2014 Jun;99(6):997-1005. doi: 10.3324/haematol.2013.097675. Epub 2014 Feb 28.

MicroRNA-23a mediates post-transcriptional regulation of CXCL12 in bone marrow stromal cells.

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Department of Medicine I, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Dresden University of Technology, Germany
Institute for Regenerative Cures, University of California, Davis, CA, USA.
Department of Medicine I, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Dresden University of Technology, Germany.
Medical Clinic of Internal Medicine and Cardiology, Dresden University of Technology, Germany.
Experimental Surgery and Regenerative Medicine, Department of Surgery, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany.


The chemokine CXCL12 regulates the interaction between hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells and bone marrow stromal cells. Although its relevance in the bone marrow niche is well recognized, the regulation of CXCL12 by microRNA is not completely understood. We transfected a library of 486 microRNA in the bone marrow stromal cell line SCP-1 and studied the expression of CXCL12. Twenty-seven microRNA were shown to downregulate expression of CXCL12. Eight microRNA (miR-23a, 130b, 135, 200b, 200c, 216, 222, and 602) interacted directly with the 3'UTR of CXCL12. Next, we determined that only miR-23a is predicted to bind to the 3'UTR and is strongly expressed in primary bone marrow stromal cells. Modulation of miR-23a changes the migratory potential of hematopoietic progenitor cells in co-culture experiments. We discovered that TGFB1 mediates its inhibitory effect on CXCL12 levels by upregulation of miR-23a. This process was partly reversed by miR-23a molecules. Finally, we determined an inverse expression of CXCL12 and miR-23a in stromal cells from patients with myelodys-plastic syndrome indicating that the interaction has a pathophysiological role. Here, we show for the first time that CXCL12-targeting miR23a regulates the functional properties of the hematopoietic niche.

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