logo

miR-34c-5p functions as pronociceptive microRNA in cancer pain by targeting Cav2.3 containing calcium channels

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Pathophysiological mechanisms underlying pain associated with cancer are poorly understood. microRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of noncoding RNAs with emerging functional importance in chronic pain. In a genome-wide screen for miRNAs regulated in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons in a mouse model of bone metastatic pain, we identified miR-34c-5p as a functionally important pronociceptive miRNA. Despite these functional insights and therapeutic potential for miR-34c-5p, its molecular mechanism of action in peripheral sensory neurons remains unknown. Here, we report the identification and validation of key target transcripts of miRNA-34c-5p. In-depth bioinformatics analyses revealed Cav2.3, P2rx6, Oprd1, and Oprm1 as high confidence putative targets for miRNA-34c-5p. Of these, canonical and reciprocal regulation of miR-34c-5p and Cav2.3 was observed in cultured sensory neurons as well as in DRG in vivo in mice with cancer pain. Coexpression of miR-34c-5p and Cav2.3 was observed in peptidergic and nonpeptidergic nociceptors, and luciferase reporter assays confirmed functional binding of miR-34c-5p to the 3′ UTR of Cav2.3 transcripts. Importantly, knocking down the expression of Cav2.3 specifically in DRG neurons led to hypersensitivity in mice. In summary, these results show that Cav2.3 is a novel mechanistic target for a key pronociceptive miRNA, miR-34c-5p, in the context of cancer pain and indicate an antinociceptive role for Cav2.3 in peripheral sensory neurons. The current study facilitates a deeper understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying cancer pain and suggests a potential for novel therapeutic strategies targeting miR-34c-5p and Cav2.3 in cancer pain.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles

Join Ovid Insights!

Benefits of Ovid Insights Include:

  • Consolidated email digests of the latest research in your favorite topics
  • A personalized dashboard of your topics all on one page 
  • Tools to bookmark and share articles of interest
  • Ability to customize and save your own searches

Register with Ovid Insights »