Induction of Anti-Proliferative and Apoptotic Effects of Sorafenib Using miR-27a Inhibitor in Hepatocellular Carcinoma Cell Lines

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Cancer Biology, National Cancer Institute, Cairo University, Egypt.

2 Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Helwan University, Egypt.


Objective: The purpose of the current study was to investigate the possible anti-tumor effect of miR-27a inhibitor in combination with Sorafenib (SOR) on cell proliferation and apoptosis of hepatocellular carcinoma cell lines. Methods: Transient transfection by oligo-miR27a inhibitor (miR-27ai) was used in this study for targeting the oncogenic miR-27a in HepG2 and Huh7 cells followed by SOR treatment. Cell viability was measured using SRB assay. The cell cycle and apoptosis were assessed by flow cytometry assay. Moreover, the level of oncogenic miR-27a was evaluated in 19 tissues of primary HCC patients as well as cell lines using qRT-PCR assay. Finally, caspase-3 activity was determined using ELISA assay. Results: Significant up-regulation of miR-27a expression was reported in HCC patients confirming its oncogenic role. Treatment of cells with SOR following transfection with miR-27ai declined cell viability significantly compared with either control or single agent treatment (p≤0.05). Highly significant decreasing in the number of cell in S-phase associated with increasing in G0-phase was also observed. Furthermore, apoptotic rate was highly significantly increased for transfected/SOR treated cells (p≤0.01). Finally, combination treatment demonstrated a significant elevation of caspase-3 activity level in both cell lines examined. Conclusion: The present data demonstrated targeting miR-27a enhances the anti-tumor effect of SOR in HCC cell lines considering as one of the promising therapeutic targets for advanced HCC management.


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