Disease-associated miRNA-mRNA networks in oral lichen planus.

Volker Gassling, Jochen Hampe, Yahya Açil, Jan Hinrich Braesen, Jörg Wiltfang, Robert Häsler
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PloS one
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A large number of pathophysiological mechanisms are regulated by microRNAs (miRNAs), which represent a new class of posttranscriptional regulators of gene expression. To date, little is known about their role in oral lichen planus (OLP), a chronic inflammatory mucocutaneous disease of unknown etiology which is being discussed as a potentially premalignant condition of oropharyngeal cancer. The aim of the present investigation was to assess the pathophysiological impact of miRNAs and to determine regulatory miRNA networks which are directly linked to potentially disease-associated target transcripts in OLP.Native tissue samples were collected from the oral mucosa of seven patients with OLP. The control group was composed of native tissue from elective oral surgery. The mRNA profiling was performed using the Affymetrix Human Gene 1.0 ST Array while miRNA profiling was performed using the microRNA Galaxy Array. Subsequent validation of initial results was carried out using TaqMan real time PCR.We identified 24 differentially regulated miRNA and 2,694 regulated transcripts. Linking the miRNAs to their potential targets we found 11 potential miRNA-mRNA pairs, of which several are functionally related to premalignant as well as to inflammatory events.Our data shows miRNA associated with transcripts which are regulated when comparing OLP patients with healthy control individuals. This suggests that miRNAs may potentially regulate disease-relevant transcripts, proposing the concept of therapeutic interventions based on miRNAs.