MicroRNA-297 promotes cardiomyocyte hypertrophy via targeting sigma-1 receptor

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Sigma-1 receptor (Sig-1R) is a ligand-regulated endoplasmic reticulum (ER) chaperone involved in cardiac hypertrophy, but it is not known whether Sig-1R is regulated by microRNAs (miRNAs). According to bioinformatic analysis, miR-297 was suggested as a potential target miRNA for Sig-1R. Therefore, we verified whether miR-297 could target Sig-1R and investigated the possible mechanisms underlying the role of miR-297 in cardiac hypertrophy.

Main methods:

Bioinformatic analysis combined with laboratory experiments, including quantitative RT-PCR, Western blotting, and luciferase assay, were performed to identify the target miRNA of Sig-1R. Transverse aortic constriction (TAC) model and neonatal rat cardiomyocytes (NCMs) stimulated with angiotensin II (AngII) were used to explore the relationship between miR-297 and Sig-1R. Additionally, the function of miR-297 in cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and ER stress/unfolded protein response (UPR) signaling pathway was investigated by transfecting miR-297 mimics/inhibitor.

Key findings:

miR-297 levels were increased in both TAC-induced hypertrophic heart tissue and AngII-induced cardiomyocyte hypertrophy. Up-regulation of miR-297 by specific mimics exacerbated AngII-induced cardiomyocyte hypertrophy, whereas inhibition of miR-297 suppressed the process. During cardiomyocyte hypertrophy, Sig-1R expression, which was negatively regulated by miR-297 by directly targeting its 3′untranslated region (UTR), was decreased. Furthermore, attenuation of miR-297 inhibited the activation of X-box binding protein 1 (Xbp1) and activating transcriptional factor 4 (ATF4) signaling pathways in NCMs.


Our data demonstrate that miR-297 promotes cardiomyocyte hypertrophy by inhibiting the expression of Sig-1R and activation of ER stress signaling, which provides a novel interpretation for cardiac hypertrophy.

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