Tu, Ma, Wen, Yang, Xue, Cai, Wang, Guan, Xue (2019) MicroRNA-377-3p alleviates IL-1β-caused chondrocyte apoptosis and cartilage degradation in osteoarthritis in part by downregulating ITGA6 Biochemical and biophysical research communications ()


Increasing evidence indicates that altered expression of microRNAs (miRNAs) is associated with osteoarthritis (OA) progression. In our study, we demonstrated that miR-377-3p is underexpressed in OA-affected cartilage and IL-1β-treated chondrocytes. Overexpression of miR-377-3p enhanced chondrocyte proliferation and restrained apoptosis and signs of cartilage matrix degradation and of an inflammatory response. Furthermore, ITGA6 was identified as a target gene of miR-377-3p. The latter was found to directly bind to the 3' untranslated region (3'UTR) of ITGA6 mRNA and downregulate ITGA6. In addition, ITGA6 expression was high in OA-affected tissues and negatively correlated with miR-77-3p expression. Overexpression of ITGA6 reversed the effects of miR-377-3p on IL-1β-caused chondrocyte apoptosis, cartilage matrix degradation, and the inflammatory response. Moreover, bioinformatic analysis and a luciferase assay indicated that miR-377-3p expression is regulated by long noncoding RNA NEAT1, which binds to miR-377-3p and inactivates it. We showed that NEAT1 was highly expressed in OA-affected cartilage, negatively correlated with miR-377-3p levels, and positively correlated with ITGA6 levels. These findings provide information for the development of future treatments of OA, suggesting that miR-377-3p may be a therapeutic target in OA. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.