, 11:58,
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Date: 21 Aug 2012

Regulation of colony stimulating factor-1 expression and ovarian cancer cell behavior in vitro by miR-128 and miR-152



Colony stimulating factor-1 (CSF-1) plays an important role in ovarian cancer biology and as a prognostic factor in ovarian cancer. Elevated levels of CSF-1 promote progression of ovarian cancer, by binding to CSF-1R (the tyrosine kinase receptor encoded by c-fms proto-oncogene).

Post-transcriptional regulation of CSF-1 mRNA by its 3’ untranslated region (3’UTR) has been studied previously. Several cis-acting elements in 3’UTR are involved in post-transcriptional regulation of CSF-1 mRNA. These include conserved protein-binding motifs as well as miRNA targets. miRNAs are 21-23nt single strand RNA which bind the complementary sequences in mRNAs, suppressing translation and enhancing mRNA degradation.


In this report, we investigate the effect of miRNAs on post-transcriptional regulation of CSF-1 mRNA in human ovarian cancer. Bioinformatics analysis predicts at least 14 miRNAs targeting CSF-1 mRNA 3’UTR. By mutations in putative miRNA targets in CSF-1 mRNA 3’UTR, we identified a common target for both miR-128 and miR-152. We have also found that both miR-128 and miR-152 down-regulate CSF-1 mRNA and protein expression in ovarian cancer cells leading to decreased cell motility and adhesion in vitro, two major aspects of the metastatic potential of cancer cells.


The major CSF-1 mRNA 3’UTR contains a common miRNA target which is involved in post-transcriptional regulation of CSF-1. Our results provide the evidence for a mechanism by which miR-128 and miR-152 down-regulate CSF-1, an important regulator of ovarian cancer.