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    Severe influenza infections are featured by acute lung injury, a syndrome of increased pulmonary microvascular permeability. A growing number of evidences have shown that influenza A virus induces cytoskeletal rearrangement and permeability increase in endothelial cells. Although miRNA's involvement in the regulation of influenza virus infection and endothelial cell (EC) function has been well documented, little is known about the miRNA profiles in influenza-infected endothelial cells. Using human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) as cell models, the present study aims to explore the differential miRNAs in influenza virus-infected ECs and analyze their target genes involved in EC permeability regulation. As the results showed, permeability increased and F-actin cytoskeleton reorganized after HUVECs infected with influenza A virus (CA07 or PR8) at 30 MOI. MicroRNA microarray revealed a multitude of miRNAs differentially expressed in HUVECs after influenza virus infection. Through target gene prediction, we found that a series of miRNAs were involved in PKC, Rho/ROCK, HRas/Raf/MEK/ERK, and Ca2+/CaM pathways associated with permeability regulation, and most of these miRNAs were down-regulated after flu infection. It has been reported that PKC, Rho/ROCK, HRas/Raf/MEK/ERK, and Ca2+/CaM pathways are activated by flu infection and play important roles in permeability regulation. Therefore, the cumulative effects of these down-regulated miRNAs which synergistically enhanced activation of PKC, Rho/ROCK, Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK, and Ca2+/CaM pathways, can eventually lead to actin rearrangement and hyperpermeability in flu-infected HUVECs.


    Shujing Zhang, Ying Wu, Zinan Xuan, Xiaoming Chen, Junjie Zhang, Dongyu Ge, Xudan Wang. Screening differential miRNAs responsible for permeability increase in HUVECs infected with influenza A virus. PloS one. 2017;12(10):e0186477

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    PMID: 29059211

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