MicroRNA-31 initiates lung tumorigenesis and promotes mutant KRAS-driven lung cancer

Mick D. Edmonds, Kelli L. Boyd, Tamara Moyo, Ramkrishna Mitra, Robert Duszynski, Maria Pia Arrate, Xi Chen, Zhongming Zhao, Timothy S. Blackwell, Thomas Andl, Christine M. Eischen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


MicroRNA (miR) are important regulators of gene expression, and aberrant miR expression has been linked to oncogenesis; however, little is understood about their contribution to lung tumorigenesis. Here, we determined that miR-31 is overexpressed in human lung adenocarcinoma and this overexpression independently correlates with decreased patient survival. We developed a transgenic mouse model that allows for lung-specific expression of miR-31 to test the oncogenic potential of miR-31 in the lung. Using this model, we observed that miR-31 induction results in lung hyperplasia, followed by adenoma formation and later adenocarcinoma development. Moreover, induced expression of miR-31 in mice cooperated with mutant KRAS to accelerate lung tumorigenesis. We determined that miR-31 regulates lung epithelial cell growth and identified 6 negative regulators of RAS/MAPK signaling as direct targets of miR-31. Our study distinguishes miR-31 as a driver of lung tumorigenesis that promotes mutant KRAS-mediated oncogenesis and reveals that miR-31 directly targets and reduces expression of negative regulators of RAS/MAPK signaling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-364
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 4 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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