Hypoxia-induced microRNA-424 expression in human endothelial cells regulates HIF-α isoforms and promotes angiogenesis

Goutam Ghosh, Indira V. Subramanian, Neeta Adhikari, Xiaoxiao Zhang, Hemant P. Joshi, David Basi, Y. S. Chandrashekhar, Jennifer L. Hall, Sabita Roy, Yan Zeng, Sundaram Ramakrishnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

366 Scopus citations


Adaptive changes to oxygen availability are critical for cell survival and tissue homeostasis. Prolonged oxygen deprivation due to reduced blood flow to cardiac or peripheral tissues can lead to myocardial infarction and peripheral vascular disease, respectively. Mammalian cells respond to hypoxia by modulating oxygen-sensing transducers that stabilize the transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α), which transactivates genes governing angiogenesis and metabolic pathways. Oxygen-dependent changes in HIF-1α levels are regulated by proline hydroxylation and proteasomal degradation. Here we provide evidence for what we believe is a novel mechanism regulating HIF-1α levels in isolated human ECs during hypoxia. Hypoxia differentially increased microRNA-424 (miR-424) levels in ECs. miR-424 targeted cullin 2 (CUL2), a scaffolding protein critical to the assembly of the ubiquitin ligase system, thereby stabilizing HIF-α isoforms. Hypoxia-induced miR-424 was regulated by PU.1-dependent transactivation. PU.1 levels were increased in hypoxic endothelium by RUNX-1 and C/EBPα. Furthermore, miR-424 promoted angiogenesis in vitro and in mice, which was blocked by a specific morpholino. The rodent homolog of human miR-424, mu-miR-322, was significantly upregulated in parallel with HIF-1α in experimental models of ischemia. These results suggest that miR-322/424 plays an important physiological role in post-ischemic vascular remodeling and angiogenesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4141-4154
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2010


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