Research Papers:

The NF-κB p65/miR-23a-27a-24 cluster is a target for leukemia treatment

Yong-Chang Zhang, Hui Ye, Zhi Zeng, Y. Eugene Chin, Yu-Ning Huang and Guo-Hui Fu _

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Oncotarget. 2015; 6:33554-33567. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.5591

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Yong-Chang Zhang1,*, Hui Ye1,*, Zhi Zeng1,*, Y. Eugene Chin2, Yu-Ning Huang1 and Guo-Hui Fu1

1 Pathology Center, Shanghai General Hospital/Faculty of Basic Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China

2 Institute of Health Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences (SIBS), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine (SJTUSM), Shanghai, China

* These authors have contributed equally to the first author

Correspondence to:

Guo-Hui Fu, email:

Keywords: NF-κB p65, miR-23a-27a-24 cluster, erythroid differentiation, leukemia

Received: March 12, 2015 Accepted: August 23, 2015 Published: September 10, 2015


p65 is a transcription factor that is involved in many physiological and pathologic processes. Here we report that p65 strongly binds to the miR-23a-27a-24 cluster promoter to up-regulate its expression. As bone marrow-derived cells differentiate into red blood cells in vitro, p65/miR-23a-27a-24 cluster expression increases sharply and then declines before the appearance of red blood cells, suggesting that this cluster is negatively related to erythroid terminal differentiation. Bioinformatic and molecular biology experiments confirmed that the miR-23a-27a-24 cluster inhibited the expression of the erythroid proteome and contributed to erythroleukemia progression. In addition, high level of the p65/miR-23a-27a-24 cluster was found in APL and AML cell lines and in nucleated peripheral blood cells from leukemia patients. Furthermore, anti-leukemia drugs significantly inhibited the expression of the p65/miR-23a-27a-24 cluster in leukemia cells. Administration of the p65 inhibitor parthenolide significantly improved hematology and myelogram indices while prolonging the life span of erythroleukemia mice. Meanwhile, stable overexpression of these three miRNAs in mouse erythroleukemia cells enhanced cell malignancy. Our findings thus connect a novel regulation pathway of the p65/miR-23a-27a-24 cluster with the erythroid proteome and provide an applicable approach for treating leukemia.

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