Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry

, Volume 377, Issue 1–2, pp 143–149 | Cite as

MicroRNA-338-3p promotes differentiation of mDPC6T into odontoblast-like cells by targeting Runx2

  • Qin Sun
  • Huan Liu
  • Heng Lin
  • Guohua Yuan
  • Lu Zhang
  • Zhi Chen


Odontoblasts are terminally differentiated cells that play a vital role in dentinogenesis. The differentiation of odontoblasts is regulated by a variety of genetic and epigenetic mechanisms. Our previous microRNA microarray studies verified that miR-338-3p was up-regulated during odontoblast differentiation. The purpose of this study was to determine the function of miR-338-3p during odontoblast differentiation. The upregulation of miR-338-3p expression during odontoblast differentiation was validated by qRT-PCR. Odontoblast differentiation was enhanced after over-expression of miR-338-3p, while a loss of function approach using a miR-338-3p inhibitor impaired odontoblast differentiation. Bioinformatic analysis identified Runx2 as a potential target of miR-338-3p. Overexpression of miR-338-3p caused a decreased in the expression of Runx2 at both mRNA and protein levels, while Runx2 expression increased after treatment with miR-338-3p inhibitors. Furthermore, the activity of a luciferase reporter plasmid containing the 3′-UTR of Runx2 was significantly suppressed by ectopic expression of miR-338-3p. These results suggested that miR-338-3p promotes odontoblast differentiation through targeting Runx2.


miR-338-3p Odontoblast Runx2 Differentiation 



This study was supported by the National 973 project of China (No. 2010CB534915), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 30872880; 81070797), and the PhD Candidates Self-research (Including 1 + 4) Program of Wuhan University in 2011(No. 201130402020007).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Qin Sun
    • 1
  • Huan Liu
    • 1
  • Heng Lin
    • 1
  • Guohua Yuan
    • 1
  • Lu Zhang
    • 1
  • Zhi Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory Breeding Base of Basic Science of Stomatology (Hubei-MOST) and Key Laboratory for Oral Biomedicine of Ministry of Education (KLOBM)School and Hospital of Stomatology, Wuhan UniversityWuhanChina

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