MicroRNA Expression Profiling, Target Identification, and Validation in Chondrocytes

Methods Mol Biol. 2021:2245:151-166. doi: 10.1007/978-1-0716-1119-7_11.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of noncoding small RNAs, which play a critical role in various biological processes including musculoskeletal formation and arthritis pathogenesis via regulating target gene expressions, raising the potentially substantial effects on gene expression networks. Over 2000 miRNAs are encoded in the human genome and a single miRNA potentially targets hundreds of genes. To examine the expression and function of miRNAs in chondrocytes and arthritis pathogenesis, we describe the protocols for the current miRNA related experiments including miRNA expression profiling by (1) Next Generation Sequencing and by TaqMan Array system, (2) miRNA target prediction by TargetScan, (3) miRNA target screening by cell-based reporter library assay, and (4) miRNA and its target interaction by HITS-CLIP (high-throughput sequencing of RNAs isolated by cross-linking immunoprecipitation) in cartilage and chondrocyte research.

Keywords: Arthritis; Cartilage; Chondrocytes; Expression profiling; Target validation; miRNA.

MeSH terms

  • Chondrocytes / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Profiling*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Gene Library
  • Genes, Reporter
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • RNA Interference*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics*
  • Transcriptome*


  • MicroRNAs
  • RNA, Messenger