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Oncotarget

miR-125b regulates differentiation and metabolic reprogramming of T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia by directly targeting A20.


PMID 27637078

Abstract

T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) is an aggressive hematopoietic malignancy. Although it has been reported that overexpression of miR-125b leads to T-ALL development, the underlying mechanisms of miR-125b action are still unclear. The goal of this study is to delineate the role of miR-125b in T-ALL development. We found that miR-125b is highly expressed in undifferentiated leukemic T cells (CD4-negative) while its expression is low in differentiated T cells (CD4-positive). Overexpression of miR-125b increased the CD4-negative population in T cells, whereas depletion of miR-125b by miR-125b-sponge decreased the CD4-negative cell population. We identified that A20 (TNFAIP3) is a direct target of miR-125b in T cells. Overexpression of miR-125b also increased glucose uptake and oxygen consumption in T cells through targeting A20. Furthermore, restoration of A20 in miR-125b-overexpressing cells decreased the CD4-negative population in T cell leukemia, and decreased glucose uptake and oxygen consumption to the basal level of T cells transfected with vector. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that miR-125b regulates differentiation and reprogramming of T cell glucose metabolism via targeting A20. Since both de-differentiation and dysregulated glucose metabolism contribute to the development of T-cell leukemia, these findings provide novel insights into the understanding and treatment of T-ALL.

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