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MicroRNA-1911-3p targets mEAK-7 to suppress mTOR signaling in human lung cancer cells.


Regulation of mTOR signaling depends on an intricate interplay of post-translational protein modification. Recently, mEAK-7 (mTOR associated protein, eak-7 homolog) was identified as a positive activator of mTOR signaling via an alternative mTOR complex. However, the upstream regulation of mEAK-7 in human cells is not known. Because microRNAs are capable of modulating protein translation of RNA in eukaryotes, we conducted a bioinformatic search for relevant mEAK-7 targeting microRNAs using the Exiqon miRSearch V3.0 algorithm. Based on the score obtained through miRSearch V3.0, the top predicted miRNA (miR-1911-3p) was studied. miR-1911-3p mimics decreased protein levels of both mEAK-7 and mTORC1 downstream effectors p-S6 and p-4E-BP1 in non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) cell lines H1975 and H1299. miR-1911-3p levels and MEAK7 mRNA/mEAK-7/mTOR signaling levels were negatively correlated between normal lung and NSCLC cells. miR-1911-3p directly interacted with MEAK7 mRNA at the 3'-UTR to negatively regulate mEAK-7 and significantly decreased mTOR localization to the lysosome. Furthermore, miR-1911-3p significantly decreased cell proliferation and migration in both H1975 and H1299 cells. Thus, miR-1911-3p functions as a suppressor of mTOR signaling through the regulation of MEAK7 mRNA translation in human cancer cells.

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