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Although microRNA-184 (miR-184) is abundantly expressed in the corneas, the role of miR-184 in corneal neovascularization remains unknown. Here we investigated the association between miR-184 expression and corneal neovascularization. Quantitative real-time PCR assay was conducted to detect the expression of miR-184 and its potential target genes in the corneal epithelium of rats with corneal suture-induced neovascularization. MicroRNA-184 was also applied topically to the suture rats. Mimic and inhibitor of miR-184 were transfected into the cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs), human corneal epithelial (HCE) cells, and simian choroidal endothelial cells (RF/6A). The following experiments were performed to evaluate the effects of miR-184 in these transfected cells: cell proliferation by cell viability assay, cell migration by a scratch wound test, VEGF-induced tube formation, and VEGF and β-catenin levels by Western blot analysis. The expression of miR-184 was significantly reduced, whereas the gene expression of frizzled-4, a receptor of the Wnt pathway, was up-regulated in the corneal epithelium of corneal suture rats. The corneal neovascularization induced by suture was ameliorated by topical administration of miR-184. In the cells transfected with mimic and inhibitor of miR-184, miR-184 significantly suppressed the cell proliferation and cell migration of HUVECs, miR-184 down-regulated VEGF, and β-catenin expression in HUVECs and HCE cells. Furthermore, miR-184 inhibited the tube formation of RF/6A cells. Down-regulation of miR-184 is associated with up-regulation of VEGF and Wnt/β-catenin expression as well as corneal neovascularization, indicating that miR-184 negatively regulates corneal neovascularization.


Rongrong Zong, Tong Zhou, Zhirong Lin, Xiaorui Bao, Yanghui Xiu, Yanfeng Chen, Longlong Chen, Jian-xing Ma, Zuguo Liu, Yueping Zhou. Down-Regulation of MicroRNA-184 Is Associated With Corneal Neovascularization. Investigative ophthalmology & visual science. 2016 Mar;57(3):1398-407

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PMID: 27018842

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