MicroRNA expression profile of colon cancer stem-like cells in HT29 adenocarcinoma cell line

Huanle Zhang, Weihua Li, Feifei Nan, Fang Ren, Hongxia Wang, Yingchun Xu, Fengchun Zhang
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 2011 January 7, 404 (1): 273-8
Increasing evidence has suggested cancer stem cells (CSCs) are considered to be responsible for cancer formation, recurrence, and metastasis. Recently, many studies have also revealed that microRNAs (miRNAs) strongly implicate in regulating self renewal and tumorigenicity of CSCs in human cancers. However, with respect to colon cancer, the role of miRNAs in stemness maintenance and tumorigenicity of CSCs still remains to be unknown. In the present study, we isolated a population of colon CSCs expressing a CD133 surface phenotype from human HT29 colonic adenocarcinoma cell line by Flow Cytometry Cell Sorting. The CD133(+) cells possess a greater tumor sphere-forming efficiency in vitro and higher tumorigenic potential in vivo. Furthermore, the CD133(+) cells are endowed with stem/progenitor cells-like property including expression of "stemness" genes involved in Wnt2, BMI1, Oct3/4, Notch1, C-myc and other genes as well as self-renewal and differentiation capacity. Moreover, we investigated the miRNA expression profile of colon CSCs using miRNA array. Consequently, we identified a colon CSCs miRNA signature comprising 11 overexpressed and 8 underexpressed miRNAs, such as miR-429, miR-155, and miR-320d, some of which may be involved in regulation of stem cell differentiation. Our results suggest that miRNAs might play important roles in stemness maintenance of colon CSCs, and analysis of specific miRNA expression signatures may contribute to potential cancer therapy.

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