MicroRNA expression profiles in human adipose-derived stem cells during chondrogenic differentiation
Yang Z1, Hao J1, Hu ZM1
The aim of the present study was to examine the microRNA (miRNA or miR) expression profiles during the chondrogenic differentiation of human adipose‑derived stem cells (hADSCs) and identify the potential mechanisms through which miRNAs may affect the process of chondrogenesis. hADSCs were isolated and cultured. The expression levels of chondrogenic markers was detected by FACS analysis and immunohistochemistry. The miRNA expression profiles were then obtained through a miRNA array and confirmed through northern blot analysis. Putative targets of the miRNAs were predicted and validated through a luciferase reporter assay. The comparison of hADSCs following the induction of chondrogenic differentiation with undifferentiated hADSCs revealed 20 miRNAs that were differentially expressed by at least 2‑fold, and these miRNAs included 12 upregulated miRNAs and 8 downregulated miRNAs. Northern blot analysis further conﬁrmed the miRNA expression levels. Of these miRNAs, the expression of miR‑490‑5p was gradually downregulated following the induction of chondrogenic differentiation. The overexpression of miR‑490‑5p increased the expression of the chondrogenic markers, collagen, type II, alpha 1 (Col2A1), collagen, type X, alpha 1 (Col10A1) and aggrecan. Furthermore, it was confirmed that miR‑490‑5p directly targets bone morphogenetic protein receptor type 2 (BMPR2). In conclusion, in this study, we identified a set of miRNAs that may play key roles in the regulation of the chondrogenic differentiation of hADSCs. Our results may provide a basis for the further investigations into the molecular mechanisms of action of miRNAs in hADSC chondrogenesis.