Journal of medical virology

Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV)-encoded microRNAs promote matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) expression and pro-angiogenic cytokine secretion in endothelial cells.

PMID 28165144


The human oncogenic virus Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) is linked to Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), a tumor of endothelial cells characterized by angiogenesis and invasiveness. KSHV genome encodes 25 mature microRNAs (miRNAs), but their roles in KSHV-induced tumor dissemination and angiogenesis are not fully understood. In this study, we constructed the sensor reporters of KSHV miRNAs and used a luciferase reporter assay to demonstrate the function of the mimics of KSHV miRNAs. Then, we examined the expression of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and pro-angiogenic cytokines that are related to cell migration and angiogenesis in the KSHV 25 miRNAs transfected endothelial cells. We found that all KSHV miRNAs increased the expression of the transcripts of MMP1, MMP13, VEGFA, and VEGFR2 in different degrees, as well as the secretion of VEGFA protein in the supernatant of endothelial cells. Our results reveal that KSHV miRNAs contribute to regulating MMPs and expression of pro-angiogenic factors, thus, suggesting that these miRNAs might play a crucial role in KSHV-induced cell motility and angiogenesis.