Wen Liu, Fengqing Zhao, Huangbao Li, Jie Min#, Jun Zhou


Department of General Surgery, The First Hospital of Jiaxing, First Affiliated Hospital of Jiaxing University, Jiaxing, PR China


Objective: MicroRNAs (miRs) have become known as key epigenetic regulators involved in cancer progress. MiR-320a has been shown to be an inhibitory miR for new tumours in several cancers.

Methods: In this work, the role of miR-320a in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was studied. The expression of miR-320a was measured by reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), and the cell cycle and apoptosis were analysed by flow cytometry. Cell proliferation ability was determined by Cell Counting Kit-8 and cell colony assay. The downstream target of miR-320a was detected using the luciferase reporter gene, and the protein level of miR-320a was determined by western blot assay.

Results: miR-320a was negatively correlated with HCC proliferation in HCC cell lines. Functional studies showed that miR-320a could significantly reduce cell proliferation ability and induce growth arrest of G0/G1 in vitro. In addition, β-catenin was identified as one of the direct targets of miR-320a, and it was possible to downregulate the expression level of β-catenin, c-myc, cyclin D1, and the secretory protein DKK1 (dickopf-1).

Conclusion: miR-320a can inhibit the growth of HCC cells by targeting the β-catenin protein in HCC.


MicroRNA-320a, β-catenin, secretory protein DKK1 (dickopf-1), human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).