Tumor Biology

, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 685–692 | Cite as

Expression of microRNA-96 and its potential functions by targeting FOXO3 in non-small cell lung cancer

  • Juan Li
  • Ping Li
  • Tengfei Chen
  • Ge Gao
  • Xiaonan Chen
  • Yuwen Du
  • Ren Zhang
  • Rui Yang
  • Wei Zhao
  • Shaozhi Dun
  • Feng Gao
  • Guojun ZhangEmail author
Research Article


MicroRNAs are implicated in the regulation of various cellular processes, including proliferation, differentiation, cell death, and cell mobility, and can function either as oncogenes or tumor suppressors in tumor progression. The effects of the expression of miR-96 in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) remain unclear. In our study, qRT-PCR (quantitative reverse transcription PCR) was performed to identify the miR-96 expression level in 68 paired NSCLC and adjacent normal lung tissues. Trans-well, cell counting kit-8, and apoptosis assays were used to evaluate the effects of miR-96 expression on cell invasion, proliferation, and apoptosis. Dual-luciferase reporter assay and Western blotting were used to verify whether FOXO3 was a potential major target gene of miR-96. Finally, the effect of FOXO3 on miR-96-induced cell survival was determined by transfection of the genes expressing FOXO3 lacking 3′UTR and miR-96. The expression level of miR-96 in NSCLC tissues was higher than that in adjacent normal lung tissues, and this increased expression was significantly associated with lymph node metastasis. In contrast to the cells in the blank and negative control groups, the number of cells migrating through the matrigel was significantly lower and the incidence of apoptosis was significantly higher in cells transfected with a miR-96 inhibitor. Western blotting and dual-luciferase reporter assays demonstrated that miR-96 can bind to the putative seed region in FOXO3 mRNA 3′UTR, and can significantly lower the expression of FOXO3. The introduction of FOXO3 cDNA without 3′UTR restored miR-96 induced cell apoptosis and invasion. MiR-96 is up-regulated in NSCLC tissues. Downregulation of miR-96 inhibits invasion and promotes apoptosis in NSCLC cells A549 and SPC-A-1 by targeting FOXO3. Therefore, our study improves our understanding of the mechanisms underlying NSCLC pathogenesis and may promote the development of novel targeted therapies.


miR-96 FOXO3 NSCLC Proliferation Apoptosis Invasion 



This study was supported by the Wu Jieping Medical Foundation of China.

Conflicts of interest



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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Li
    • 1
  • Ping Li
    • 1
  • Tengfei Chen
    • 1
  • Ge Gao
    • 2
  • Xiaonan Chen
    • 2
  • Yuwen Du
    • 2
  • Ren Zhang
    • 2
  • Rui Yang
    • 1
  • Wei Zhao
    • 3
  • Shaozhi Dun
    • 1
  • Feng Gao
    • 1
  • Guojun Zhang
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Respiratory MedicineThe First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou UniversityZhengzhouChina
  2. 2.College of Basic Medical SciencesZhengzhou UniversityZhengzhouChina
  3. 3.Department of Pediatric SurgeryThe First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou UniversityZhengzhouChina

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