MicroRNA-214 antagonism protects against renal fibrosis

Laura Denby, Vasudev Ramdas, Ruifang Lu, Bryan R Conway, Jennifer S Grant, Brent Dickinson, Arin B Aurora, John D McClure, David Kipgen, Christian Delles, Eva van Rooij, Andrew H Baker

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review


Renal tubulointerstitial fibrosis is the common end point of progressive renal disease. MicroRNA (miR)-214 and miR-21 are upregulated in models of renal injury, but the function of miR-214 in this setting and the effect of its manipulation remain unknown. We assessed the effect of inhibiting miR-214 in an animal model of renal fibrosis. In mice, genetic deletion of miR-214 significantly attenuated interstitial fibrosis induced by unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO). Treatment of wild-type mice with an anti-miR directed against miR-214 (anti-miR-214) before UUO resulted in similar antifibrotic effects, and in vivo biodistribution studies demonstrated that anti-miR-214 accumulated at the highest levels in the kidney. Notably, in vivo inhibition of canonical TGF-β signaling did not alter the regulation of endogenous miR-214 or miR-21. Whereas miR-21 antagonism blocked Smad 2/3 activation, miR-214 antagonism did not, suggesting that miR-214 induces antifibrotic effects independent of Smad 2/3. Furthermore, TGF-β blockade combined with miR-214 deletion afforded additional renal protection. These phenotypic effects of miR-214 depletion were mediated through broad regulation of the transcriptional response to injury, as evidenced by microarray analysis. In human kidney tissue, miR-214 was detected in cells of the glomerulus and tubules as well as in infiltrating immune cells in diseased tissue. These studies demonstrate that miR-214 functions to promote fibrosis in renal injury independent of TGF-β signaling in vivo and that antagonism of miR-214 may represent a novel antifibrotic treatment in the kidney.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-80
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Fibrosis
  • Gene Deletion
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Imidazoles
  • Kidney
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • MicroRNAs
  • Quinoxalines
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic
  • Signal Transduction
  • Smad2 Protein
  • Smad3 Protein
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • Ureteral Obstruction


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