The Journal of biological chemistry

miR-186 inhibits muscle cell differentiation through myogenin regulation.

PMID 24385428


The complex process of skeletal muscle differentiation is organized by the myogenic regulatory factors (MRFs), Myf5, MyoD, Myf6, and myogenin, where myogenin plays a critical role in the regulation of the final stage of muscle differentiation. In an effort to investigate the role microRNAs (miRNAs) play in regulating myogenin, a bioinformatics approach was used and six miRNAs (miR-182, miR-186, miR-135, miR-491, miR-329, and miR-96) were predicted to bind the myogenin 3'-untranslated region (UTR). However, luciferase assays showed only miR-186 inhibited translation and 3'-UTR mutagenesis analysis confirmed this interaction was specific. Interestingly, the expression of miR-186 mirrored that of its host gene, ZRANB2, during development. Functional studies demonstrated that miR-186 overexpression inhibited the differentiation of C2C12 and primary muscle cells. Our findings therefore identify miR-186 as a novel regulator of myogenic differentiation.