Molecular Therapy. Nucleic Acids 2017 September [Epub 2017 July 8] [Link]
Moody HL, Lind MJ, Maher SG
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is associated with an extremely poor prognosis, and most patients initially are or rapidly become unresponsive to platinum-based chemotherapy. MicroRNA-31 (miR-31) is encoded on a genomic fragile site, 9p21.3, which is reportedly lost in many MPM tumors. Based on previous findings in a variety of other cancers, we hypothesized that miR-31 alters chemosensitivity and that miR-31 reconstitution may influence sensitivity to chemotherapeutics in MPM. Reintroduction of miR-31 into miR-31 null NCI-H2452 cells significantly enhanced clonogenic resistance to cisplatin and carboplatin. Although miR-31 re-expression increased chemoresistance, paradoxically, a higher relative intracellular accumulation of platinum was detected. This was coupled to a significantly decreased intranuclear concentration of platinum. Linked with a downregulation of OCT1, a bipotential transcriptional regulator with multiple miR-31 target binding sites, we subsequently identified an indirect miR-31-mediated upregulation of ABCB9, a transporter associated with drug accumulation in lysosomes, and increased uptake of platinum to lysosomes. However, when overexpressed directly, ABCB9 promoted cellular chemosensitivity, suggesting that miR-31 promotes chemoresistance largely via an ABCB9-independent mechanism. Overall, our data suggest that miR-31 loss from MPM tumors promotes chemosensitivity and may be prognostically beneficial in the context of therapeutic sensitivity.