The excessive production of inflammatory mediators by vascular endothelial cells (ECs) greatly contributes to the development of atherosclerosis. In this study, we explored the potential effect of lncRNA MALAT1 on endothelial inflammation. First, the EC inflammation model was constructed by treating human umbilical vein ECs (HUVECs) and human coronary artery ECs (HCAECs) with oxidized low-density lipoprotein (ox-LDL), which confirmed the role of MALAT1 in the inflammatory activity. Then MALAT1 was overexpressed in HUVECs and HCAECs, and the levels of inflammatory mediators and nitric oxide (NO) were examined by Western blotting, ELISA, and NO detection assay. The migration ability was confirmed by wound healing assay. The interactions among MALAT1, miR-590, and STAT3 were predicted by bioinformatics analysis and verified by qRT-PCR, Western blotting, or dual-luciferase reporter assay. MALAT1 was upregulated in ECs treated with ox-LDL, and knockdown of MALAT1 significantly inhibited ox-LDL-induced inflammation. MALAT1 overexpression potentiated the inflammatory activities of ECs, including enhanced production of inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-8, and TNF-α) and adhesion molecules (VCAM1 and ICAM1), and decreased NO level and cell migratory ability. Mechanistically, MALAT1 could directly downregulate miR-590, and miR-590 could bind to the 3′-UTR of STAT3 to repress its expression. Additionally, overexpression of MALAT1-mediated inflammation was largely abrogated by the concomitant overexpression of miR-590. miR-590 knockdown activated the inflammatory response, which was reversed by STAT3 inhibition. Thus, MALAT1 serves as a proinflammatory lncRNA in ECs through regulating the miR-590/STAT3 axis, suggesting that MALAT1 may be a promising therapeutic target during the treatment of atherosclerosis.
© 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel.