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J Radiat Res. 2013 May;54(3):401-8. doi: 10.1093/jrr/rrs113. Epub 2012 Nov 27.

Increased miRNA-22 expression sensitizes esophageal squamous cell carcinoma to irradiation.

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Tianjin Key Laboratory of Molecular Nuclear Medicine, Institute of Radiation Medicine, Chinese Academy of Medical Science, Tianjin, 300192, China.


miRNA-22 was previously reported to be a tumor suppressor. The aim of this study was to explore the expression and function of miRNA-22 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Expression of miRNA-22 in 100 ESCC tissues was examined by q-PCR. The correlation between miRNA-22 level and clinicopathological features was analyzed using SPSS16.0 statistical software. Moreover, the effect of miRNA-22 expression on radiosensitivity of ESCC cells was examined. miRNA-22 expression decreased in ESCC tissues, and statistical analyses showed that the expression of miRNA-22 was associated with the stage of clinical classification. No correlation was found between miRNA-22 expression and the overall survival of ESCC patients. However, significant positive correlation was found between miRNA-22 expression and the survival of patients who received radiotherapy (P < 0.05). Increased expression of miRNA-22 sensitized ESCC cells to γ-ray radiation and promoted the apoptosis of ESCC cells induced by γ-ray radiation. Increased expression level of miRNA-22 had effects on Rad51 expression after irradiation. These results demonstrate for the first time that decreased miRNA-22 expression correlates with increased radiotherapy resistance of ESCC, and that this effect is mediated, at least in part, by the Rad51 pathway.


ESCC; Rad51; miRNA-22; radiosensitivity; γ-ray

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