Regulation of microRNAs by epigenetics and their interplay involved in cancer

Xiaolan Liu, Xiaoyan Chen, Xinfang Yu, Yongguang Tao, Ann M. Bode, Zigang Dong, Ya Cao

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

109 Scopus citations


Similar to protein-coding genes, miRNAs are also susceptible to epigenetic modulation. Although numerous miRNAs have been shown to be affected by DNA methylation, the regulatory mechanism of histone modification on miRNA is not adequately understood. EZH2 and HDACs were recently identified as critical histone modifiers of deregulated miRNAs in cancer and can be recruited to a miRNA promoter by transcription factors such as MYC. Because miRNAs can modulate epigenetic architecture and can be regulated by epigenetic alteration, they could reasonably play an important role in mediating the crosstalk between epigenetic regulators. The complicated network between miRNAs and epigenetic machineries underlies the epigenetic-miRNA regulatory pathway, which is important in monitoring gene expression profiles. Regulation of miRNAs by inducing epigenetic changes reveals promising avenues for the design of innovative strategies in the fight against human cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number96
JournalJournal of Experimental and Clinical Cancer Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 22 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project was supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (2009CB522300), the National Nature Science Foundation of China (90813028 and 30830113) and Hunan Provincial Innovation Foundation for Postgraduate.


  • Cancer
  • DNA methylation
  • Epigenetic
  • Histone modification
  • microRNA


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