Differential expression of microRNA and predicted targets in pulmonary sarcoidosis

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2012 Jan 13;417(2):886-91. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2011.12.068. Epub 2011 Dec 24.


Background: Recent studies show that various inflammatory diseases are regulated at the level of RNA translation by small non-coding RNAs, termed microRNAs (miRNAs). We sought to determine whether sarcoidosis tissues harbor a distinct pattern of miRNA expression and then considered their potential molecular targets.

Methods and results: Genome-wide microarray analysis of miRNA expression in lung tissue and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) was performed and differentially expressed (DE)-miRNAs were then validated by real-time PCR. A distinct pattern of DE-miRNA expression was identified in both lung tissue and PBMCs of sarcoidosis patients. A subgroup of DE-miRNAs common to lung and lymph node tissues were predicted to target transforming growth factor (TGFβ)-regulated pathways. Likewise, the DE-miRNAs identified in PBMCs of sarcoidosis patients were predicted to target the TGFβ-regulated "wingless and integrase-1" (WNT) pathway.

Conclusions: This study is the first to profile miRNAs in sarcoidosis tissues and to consider their possible roles in disease pathogenesis. Our results suggest that miRNA regulate TGFβ and related WNT pathways in sarcoidosis tissues, pathways previously incriminated in the pathogenesis of sarcoidosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Gene Expression
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Humans
  • Integrases / genetics*
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Lymph Nodes / metabolism
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Sarcoidosis, Pulmonary / drug therapy
  • Sarcoidosis, Pulmonary / genetics*
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / genetics*
  • Wnt Proteins / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Wnt Proteins / genetics*


  • MicroRNAs
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • Wnt Proteins
  • Integrases