MicroRNAs are endogenous small noncoding RNAs, which play a critical role in regulating various biological and pathologic processes. Furthermore, miR-301a has been detected to be overly expressed in tumorigenic progression of ovarian cancer. However, the effects of miR-301a on ovarian cancer are still unclear.
The objective of this study is to investigate the molecular mechanisms of miR-301a in epithelial ovarian cancer cells.
The miR-301a expression in ovarian cancer cells was detected. Then, cell proliferation, cell cycle, and apoptosis of the miR-301a-mimic-transfected ovarian cancer cells were determined, as well as the effects of the miR-301a mimic on the PTEN/phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway were explored.
We found that the miR-301a expression levels were markedly upregulated in ovarian cancer tissues and cells, and upregulation of miR-301a-promoted cell viability and proliferation. Our results also showed that the miR-301a-mimic accelerated cell cycle progression of ovarian cancer cells by targeting the CDK4/Cyclin-D1 pathway but not the CDK2/Cyclin-E pathway. Moreover, transfection of the miR-301a mimic into ovarian cancer cells could decrease the PTEN expression while increasing the PI3K and Akt phosphorylation, as compared with the miR-301a inhibitor group and the negative control group.
Therefore, miR-301a should be an oncogene in ovarian cancer, and overexpression of miR-301a promoted proliferation of ovarian cancer cells by modulating the PTEN/PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.