MicroRNAs are widely dysregulated in various cancers and integrated into tumorigenic programs as either oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes. Here, we show that miR-26b, which is down-regulated in human breast cancer specimens and cell lines, impairs viability and triggers apoptosis of human breast cancer MCF7 cells. SLC7A11 is identified as a direct target of miR-26b and its expression is remarkably increased in both breast cancer cell lines and clinical samples. Furthermore, SLC7A11 silence mimics miR-26b-aroused viability impairment and apoptosis in MCF7 cells. Our studies reveal a protective role of miR-26b in the molecular etiology of human breast cancer by promoting apoptosis.
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