MicroRNA-34a perturbs B lymphocyte development by repressing the forkhead box transcription factor Foxp1.

PMID 20598588


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) can influence lineage choice or affect critical developmental checkpoints during hematopoiesis. We examined the role of the p53-induced microRNA miR-34a in hematopoiesis by gain-of-function analysis in murine bone marrow. Constitutive expression of miR-34a led to a block in B cell development at the pro-B-cell-to-pre-B-cell transition, leading to a reduction in mature B cells. This block appeared to be mediated primarily by inhibited expression of the transcription factor Foxp1. Foxp1 was a direct target of miR-34a in a 3'-untranslated region (UTR)-dependent fashion. Knockdown of Foxp1 by siRNA recapitulated the B cell developmental phenotype induced by miR-34a, whereas cotransduction of Foxp1 lacking its 3' UTR with miR-34a rescued B cell maturation. Knockdown of miR-34a resulted in increased amounts of Foxp1 and mature B cells. These findings identify a role for miR-34a in connecting the p53 network with suppression of Foxp1, a known B cell oncogene.