In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, researchers led by Shelly Lu at the University of Southern California identified a trio of microRNAs that reduce the expression of MAT1A. Reduced MAT1A expression is correlated with a worse prognosis in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC; liver cancer).
The researchers found that expression of the three microRNAs was induced in human HCC samples. Using a mouse model of HCC, Lu and colleagues demonstrated that reducing expression of these microRNAs resulted in smaller tumors, while increased expression promoted tumor growth and metastasis.
These findings show that the trio of microRNAs are important regulators of HCC growth and could potentially serve as therapeutic targets in cancers associated with decreased MAT1A expression.
Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
MicroRNAs regulate methionine adenosyltransferase 1A expression in hepatocellular carcinoma
Journal of Clinical Investigation Dec. 17, 2012