MiR-525-5p Repressed Metastasis and Anoikis Resistance in Cervical Cancer via Blocking UBE2C/ZEB1/2 Signal Axis

Abstract

Background

Accumulating evidence indicated that miRNAs are important regulators involved in cancer biology.

Aims

We aimed to investigate the biological functions and potentially underlying molecular mechanism of miR-525-5p in CC.

Methods

RT-PCR and Western blot assay were performed to detect mRNA and protein expression. Cell proliferation, anoikis resistance, and cell invasion were analyzed.

Results

We observed that the expression of miR-525-5p was declined in several CC cell lines. Additionally, introduction of miR-525-5p dramatically hampered cell viability, invasiveness, and migration ability through modulating epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) marked genes as reflected by the upregulation of E-cadherin, as well as the downregulation of vimentin and N-cadherin. Furthermore, administration of miR-525-5p markedly reduced anchorage-independent growth and anoikis resistance accompanied by a decrease in the expression of anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and an increase in the expression of pro-apoptotic protein Bax, C-caspase 3, and C-PARP1. Most importantly, analysis using publicly available algorithms predicted that UBE2C was a direct and functional target of miR-525-5p. Luciferase assays coupled with RT-PCR and Western blot analysis further verified that miR-525-5p negatively regulated UBE2C expression. Interestingly, miR-525-5p modulated ZEB1/2 expression via targeting UBE2C. Mechanically, administration of UBE2C partially blunted the salutary effects of miR-525-5p on invasive ability, EMT, and anoikis resistance, indicating that miR-525-5p acts as a tumor suppressor in CC largely through repression of UBE2C/ZEB1/2 signaling.

Conclusions

Taken together, our data identify a novel signaling axis of miR-525-5p/UBE2C/ZEB1/2 in repressing EMT and anoikis resistance, and likely serve as a potential therapeutic target for CC metastasis and prognosis as well as a therapeutic application.

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Acknowledgments

The work was supported by the Science and Technology Project of Xianyang (2017k02-75).

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Correspondence to Li-xiu Liu.

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Chen, M., Liu, Lx. MiR-525-5p Repressed Metastasis and Anoikis Resistance in Cervical Cancer via Blocking UBE2C/ZEB1/2 Signal Axis. Dig Dis Sci 65, 2442–2451 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10620-019-05916-9

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Keywords

  • MiR-525-5p
  • Metastasis
  • Anoikis resistance
  • UBE2C/ZEB1/2 signal axis
  • Cervical cancer