Methylation-mediated silencing of miR-133a-3p promotes breast cancer cell migration and stemness via miR-133a-3p/MAML1/DNMT3A positive feedback loop.
Shi W., Tang T., Li X., Deng S., Li R., Wang Y., Wang Y., Xia T., Zhang Y., Zen K., Jin L., Pan Y.
BACKGROUND: miR-133a-3p has been recently discovered to be down-regulated in various human malignancies, including breast cancer, and reduced miR-133a-3p levels have been significantly associated with breast cancer cell growth and invasion. However, the regulatory mechanisms leading to abnormal expression of miR-133a-3p in breast cancer remain obscure. METHODS: qRT-PCR was applied to detect the expression of miR-133a-3p in breast cancer tissues and cell lines. Bisulfite sequencing was used to detect the degree of methylation of the miR-133a-3p promoter. The effects of miR-133a-3p on breast cancer in vitro were examined by cell proliferation assay, transwell assay, flow cytometry, and western blotting. Bioinformatic analysis, dual-luciferase assay and RIP assay were employed to identify the interaction between miR-133a-3p and MAML1. A xenograft model was used to show the metastasis of breast cancer cells. RESULTS: We confirmed that miR-133a-3p was silenced by DNA hypermethylation in breast cancer cell lines and tissues, which predicted poor prognosis in breast cancer patients, and reducing miR-133a-3p expression led to a significant increase in the migration, invasion, proliferation, and stemness of breast cancer cells in vitro. Mastermind-like transcriptional coactivator 1 (MAML1) was confirmed to be a target of miR-133a-3p involved in regulating breast cancer metastasis both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, a series of investigations indicated that MAML1 initiated a positive feedback loop, which could up-regulate DNA methyltransferase 3A (DNMT3A) to promote hypermethylation of the miR-133a-3p promoter. CONCLUSION: Taken together, our findings revealed a novel miR-133a-3p/MAML1/DNMT3A positive feedback loop in breast cancer cells, which may become a potential therapeutic target for breast cancer.