MicroRNA modulation of megakaryoblast fate involves cholinergic signaling

Cinthya Guimaraes-Sternberg, Ari Meerson, Iftach Shaked, Hermona Soreq

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are abundant small regulatory RNAs with multiple roles in cell fate determination. The processes regulating cellular miRNA levels are still unclear and experimental oligonucleotide tools to readily mimic their effects are not yet available. Here, we report that thapsigargin-induced intracellular Ca++ release suppressed pre-miR-181a levels in human promegakaryotic Meg-01 cells, induced differentiation-associated nuclear endoreduplication and caspase-3 activation and replaced the acetylcholinesterase 3′ splice variant AChE-S with AChE-R. AChE, PKC and PKA inhibitors all attenuated the pre-miR-181a decline and the induced differentiation. AChmiON, a synthetic 23-mer 2′-oxymethylated oligonucleotide mimicking the miR-181a sequence, blocked the calcium-induced differentiation while elevating cellular pre-miR-181a levels and inducing DNA fragmentation and cell death. Moreover, when added to RW 264.7 macrophages, AChmiON at 100 nM induced nitric oxide production with efficiency close to that of bacterial endotoxin, demonstrating physiologically relevant activities also in blood-born monocytes/macrophages. The stress-induced modulation of hematopoietic miR-181a levels through AChE, PKC and PKA cascade(s) suggests using miRNA mimics for diverting the fate of hematopoietic tumor cells towards differentiation and/or apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-595
Number of pages13
JournalLeukemia Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Acetylcholinesterase
  • Apoptosis
  • Calcium
  • Caspase
  • Differentiation
  • Hematopoiesis
  • Macrophage
  • Megakaryocytopoiesis
  • MicroRNA
  • Nitric oxide
  • Oligonucleotide
  • miR-181


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