Hsa-miR-3658 was introduced as a repressor of OCT4 gene expression and an inhibitor of colorectal cancer tumors.
One of the markers of pluripotency is the OCT4 gene, which is expressed not only in pluripotent stem cells but also in cancer-causing cells; therefor, identification of the molecular mechanisms that regulate the expression of this gene is important. So far, few microRNAs have been identified for regulating the expression of this gene.
Following the discovery of new microRNAs that regulate OCT4 expression, Iranian researchers Fahimeh Hosseini, Bahram Soltani, Hossein Baharvand, Saman Hosseinkhani and their colleagues at Tarbiat Modares University and the Royan Research Institute studied the bioinformatics of molecular data.
The results of the study identified hsa-miR-3658 as a possible candidate. Studies have shown that the expression of this microRNA in colon cancer tumor cells is reduced compared to normal colon cells. In addition, these experiments showed that increased expression of miR-3658 was associated with decreased expression of OCT4 in cells. Also, the direct relationship between OCT4 and miR-3658 was shown by laboratory methods.
The study, published in the International Biochemical Journal, identified miR-3658 as a tumor-suppressing microRNA that affects the expression of the OCT4 gene and can be used to treat colon cancer.
Iran has taken wide strides in science and technology, particularly in medical and medicinal fields, in recent years.
The country has already mass-produced Doxorubicin - a non-carcinogenic drug - used in lung and breast cancer cases and made based on nano-liposomes technique. The drug with higher efficiency needs lower times for use and naturally lessens side effects, including vascular and heart complications.
Iran has also produced two other non-carcinogenic medicines Paclitaxel for breast and ovarian cancer and oxaliplatin for colon cancer.