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New cause of osteoporosis: Mutation in a miroRNA

Date:
November 20, 2009
Source:
Journal of Clinical Investigation
Summary:
Many biological processes are controlled by small molecules known as microRNAs. Researchers have now identified a previously unknown microRNA (miR-2861) as crucial to bone maintenance in mice and humans; significantly, expression of functional miR-2861 was absent in two related adolescents with primary osteoporosis.

Many biological processes are controlled by small molecules known as microRNAs, which work by suppressing the expression of specific sets of genes. Xiang-Hang Luo and colleagues, at Second Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, People's Republic of China, have now identified a previously unknown microRNA (miR-2861) as crucial to bone maintenance in mice and humans.

Of clinical importance, expression of functional miR-2861 was absent in two related adolescents with primary osteoporosis.

Several lines of evidence determined the key role of miR-2861 in maintaining bone. First, miR-2861 promoted the in vitro development of a mouse stromal cell line into the cells responsible for bone formation. Second, in mice, in vivo silencing of miR-2861 inhibited bone formation and decreased bone mass. Last, analysis of ten patients with primary osteoporosis revealed two related adolescents in whom disease was caused by a mutation in the miR-2861 precursor (pre-miR-2861) that blocked expression of miR-2861.

These data led the authors to conclude that miR-2861 has an important role in controlling the generation of the cells responsible for bone formation and that defects in the processing of its precursor can cause osteoporosis.

The research appears in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Journal of Clinical Investigation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Hui Li, Hui Xie, Wei Liu, Rong Hu, Bi Huang, Yan-Fei Tan, Er-Yuan Liao, Kang Xu, Zhi-Feng Sheng, Hou-De Zhou, Xian-Ping Wu and Xiang-Hang Luo. A novel microRNA targeting HDAC5 regulates osteoblast differentiation in mice and contributes to primary osteoporosis in humans. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2009; DOI: 10.1172/JCI39832

Cite This Page:

Journal of Clinical Investigation. "New cause of osteoporosis: Mutation in a miroRNA." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091116173153.htm>.
Journal of Clinical Investigation. (2009, November 20). New cause of osteoporosis: Mutation in a miroRNA. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091116173153.htm
Journal of Clinical Investigation. "New cause of osteoporosis: Mutation in a miroRNA." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091116173153.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

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