Selective release of miRNAs via extracellular vesicles is associated with house dust mite allergen-induced airway inflammation

Gon, Yasuhiro, Shuichiro Maruoka, Toshio Inoue, Kazumichi Kuroda, Kenji Yamagishi, Yutaka Kozu, Sotaro Shikano, Kaori Soda, Jan Lotvall, and Shu Hashimoto. Clinical & Experimental Allergy (2017).


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) may facilitate cell-to-cell communication via extracellular vesicles (EVs). The biological roles of miRNAs in EVs on allergic airway inflammation is unclear.


Airway secreted EVs (AEVs) were isolated from bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) of control and house dust mite (HDM) allergen-exposed HDM-sensitized mice. The expression of miRNAs in AEVs or miRNAs and mRNAs in lung tissue was analyzed using miRNA microarray.


The amount of AEV increased 8.9-fold in BALF from HDM-exposed mice compared with that from sham-control mice. HDM exposure resulted in significant changes in the expression of 139 miRNAs in EVs and 175 miRNAs in lung tissues, with 54 miRNAs being common in both samples. Expression changes of these 54 miRNAs between miRNAs in AEVs and lung tissues after HDM exposure were inversely correlated. Computational analysis revealed that 31 genes, including IL-13 and IL-5Ra, are putative targets of the miRNAs upregulated in AEVs but downregulated in lung tissues after HDM exposure. The amount of AEV in BALF after HDM exposure was diminished by treatment with the sphingomyelinase inhibitor GW4869. The treatment with GW4869 also decreased Th2 cytokines and eosinophil counts in BALFs and reduced eosinophil accumulation in airway walls and mucosa.


These results indicate that selective sorting of miRNA including Th2 inhibitory miRNAs into AEVs and increase release to the airway after HDM exposure would be involve in the pathogenesis of allergic airway inflammation.

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