Experimental and therapeutic medicine

MicroRNA-98 rescues proliferation and alleviates ox-LDL-induced apoptosis in HUVECs by targeting LOX-1.

PMID 28565756


Oxidized low-density lipoprotein (ox-LDL) is a major and critical mediator of atherosclerosis, and the underlying mechanism is thought to involve the ox-LDL-induced dysfunction of endothelial cells (ECs). MicroRNAs (miRNAs), which are a group of small non-coding RNA molecules that post-transcriptionally regulate the expression of target genes, have been associated with diverse cellular functions and the pathogenesis of various diseases, including atherosclerosis. miRNA-98 (miR-98) has been demonstrated to be involved in the regulation of cellular apoptosis; however, the role of miR-98 in ox-LDL-induced dysfunction of ECs and atherosclerosis has yet to be elucidated. Therefore, the present study aimed to investigate the role of miR-98 in ox-LDL-induced dysfunction of ECs and the underlying mechanism. It was demonstrated that miR-98 expression was markedly downregulated in ox-LDL-treated human umbilical vein ECs (HUVECs) and that miR-98 promoted the proliferation and alleviated apoptosis of HUVECs exposed to ox-LDL. In addition, the results demonstrated that lectin-like oxidized low-density lipoprotein receptor 1 (LOX-1) was a direct target of miR-98 in HUVECs, as indicated by a luciferase assay. The results of the present study suggested that miR-98 may inhibit the uptake of toxic ox-LDL, maintain HUVEC proliferation and protect HUVECs against apoptosis via the suppression of LOX-1.