Induction of endogenous cardiomyocyte (CM) proliferation is one of the key strategies for heart regeneration. Increasing evidence points to the potential role of microRNAs (miRNAs) in the regulation of CM proliferation. Here, we used human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived CMs (hESC-CMs) as a tool to identify miRNAs that promote CM proliferation. We profiled miRNA expression at an early stage of CM differentiation and identified a list of highly expressed miRNAs. Among these miRNAs, miR-25 was enriched in early-stage hESC-CMs, but its expression decreased over time. Overexpression of miR-25 promoted CM proliferation. RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis revealed that genes related to cell-cycle signal were strongly influenced by miR-25 overexpression. We further showed that miR-25 promoted CM proliferation by targeting FBXW7. Finally, the function of miR-25 in the regulation of CM proliferation was demonstrated in zebrafish. Our study suggested that miR-25 is a promising molecule for heart regeneration.
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