Hepatitis B virus promotes oncogenesis through microRNA modulation

Viruses prompt oncogenic transformation by genetically altering infected cells. Several recent studies have demonstrated that viruses alter the expression of microRNAs, non-coding RNA molecules that can block the expression of target genes.

In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Xiaoje Xu and colleagues at the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology report that miR-148a is repressed by hepatitis B virus (HBV) X protein (HBx) to promote growth and metastasis of liver cancer.

In normal liver cells, miR-148a represses the expression of the oncogenic protein HPIP, but the prevents expression of miR-148a, leading to increased levels of HPIP and subsequent oncogenic transformation.

This study demonstrates that a cancer-associated virus promotes carcinogenesis through direct manipulation of a microRNA.

More information: Hepatitis B virus X protein represses miRNA-148a to enhance tumorigenesis, Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2013.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Micro-RNA's contribute to risk for panic disorder

Mar 24, 2011

Studies in twin pairs suggest that 40% of the risk for panic disorder is heritable, yet the manner in which genes contribute to the risk for panic disorder is far from clear. To date, variations in a growing number of genes ...

MicroRNA controls expression of oncogenes

Jun 09, 2008

A new study demonstrates that microRNAs can modulate the expression of well known tumor-specific oncogenic translocation proteins and may play a significant role in some human cancers. The research, published by Cell Press ...

Useful biomarkers for esophageal squamous cell carcinoma

Jan 25, 2011

A research team from China investigated the expression profile of miRNA in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). They found that miRNAs were deregulated and miR-143 and miR-145 were downregulated in ESCC.

Recommended for you

Ebola isolation at US base 'pretty much vacation'

14 hours ago

With plenty of flat screen TVs, game nights and even an outdoor fire pit, life in isolation for members of the U.S. military who have returned from the Ebola mission in West Africa can look a lot like summer ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.