Tumor suppressive microRNAs (miR-222 and miR-31) regulate molecular pathways based on microRNA expression signature in prostate cancer

J Hum Genet. 2012 Nov 26;57(11):691-9. doi: 10.1038/jhg.2012.95. Epub 2012 Aug 2.


microRNAs (miRNAs) have key roles in human tumorigenesis, tumor progression and metastasis. miRNAs are aberrantly expressed in many human cancers and can function as tumor suppressors or oncogenes that target many cancer-related genes. This study seeks to identify novel miRNA-regulated molecular pathways in prostate cancer (PCa). The miRNA expression signature in clinical specimens of PCa showed that 56 miRNAs were significantly downregulated in PCa compared with non-PCa tissues. We focused on the top four downregulated miRNAs (miR-187, miR-205, miR-222 and miR-31) to investigate their functional significance in PCa cells. Expression levels of these four miRNAs were validated in PCa specimens (15 PCa tissues and 17 non-PCa tissues) to confirm that they were significantly reduced in these PCa tissues. Gain-of-function analysis demonstrated that miR-222 and miR-31 inhibited cell proliferation, invasion and migration in PCa cell lines (PC3 and DU145), suggesting that miR-222 and miR-31 may act as tumor suppressors in PCa. Genome-wide gene expression analysis using miR-222 or miR-31 transfectants to identify the pathways they affect showed that many cancer-related genes are regulated by these miRNAs in PC3 cells. Identification and categorization of the molecular pathways regulated by tumor suppressive miRNAs could provide new information about the molecular mechanisms of PCa tumorigenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Movement / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Computer Simulation
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Genes, Tumor Suppressor
  • Genome, Human
  • Humans
  • Male
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Reproducibility of Results


  • MIRN187 microRNA, human
  • MIRN205 microRNA, human
  • MIRN222 microRNA, human
  • MIRN31 microRNA, human
  • MicroRNAs

Associated data

  • GEO/GSE37119