MicroRNA expression profiles in placenta with severe preeclampsia using a PNA-based microarray

Placenta. 2013 Sep;34(9):799-804. doi: 10.1016/j.placenta.2013.06.006. Epub 2013 Jul 3.


Introduction: Preeclampsia (PE) is a leading cause of maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity worldwide. However, the pathophysiology of this disease is not yet fully understood. MiRNA plays an important role in post-transcriptional gene regulation. Recent studies have suggested that dysregulation of miRNAs in placental tissue is involved in the pathogenesis of PE. Therefore, we investigated miRNA profiles in PE placenta to understand the miRNA function in PE pathogenesis.

Methods: MiRNA profiling was performed in 20 formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded samples (10 placentas from severe PE and 10 from a control group). We used a hybridization-based microarray with a PNA-probe comprised of 158 miRNAs.

Results: Thirteen miRNAs (miR-92b, miR-197, miR-342-3p, miR-296-5p, miR-26b, miR-25, miR-296-3p, miR-26a, miR-198, miR-202, miR-191, miR-95, and miR-204) were significantly overexpressed and two miRNAs (miR-21 and miR-223) were underexpressed in PE compared with the control group. Among 15 differentially expressed miRNAs, miR-26b, miR-296-5p, and miR-223 were found to be consistent with results from previous studies. We identified 893 genes that were predicted by at least three of four computational algorithms. Target genes participated in several signaling pathways, adherens junction, focal adhesion, and regulation of the actin cytoskeleton.

Conclusions: Several miRNAs are found to be dysregulated in placentas of PE patients and they seem to be closely associated with the early pathogenesis of PE. Further study is necessary to develop tools for early detection and management.

Keywords: MicroRNAs; Placenta; Preeclampsia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Decidua / blood supply
  • Decidua / metabolism
  • Decidua / pathology
  • Down-Regulation
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Profiling / methods
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • MicroRNAs / biosynthesis*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Peptide Nucleic Acids / metabolism
  • Placenta / blood supply
  • Placenta / metabolism*
  • Placenta / pathology
  • Pre-Eclampsia / metabolism*
  • Pre-Eclampsia / pathology
  • Pre-Eclampsia / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Third
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Up-Regulation


  • MicroRNAs
  • Peptide Nucleic Acids