MicroRNA-141 binds to the nerve growth factor receptor associated protein 1 gene and restores the erectile function of diabetic rats through down-regulating the nerve growth factor/neurotrophin receptor p75 (NGF/p75NTR) signaling.

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is one of the major complications in diabetes mellitus (DM). We have previously reported that the nerve growth factor (NGF)/tyrosine kinase receptor (TrkA) signaling is actively involved in DM-induced ED (DMED). Here, we investigate the effect of micro-RNA-141 (miR-141) on the NGF/p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR) signaling and erectile function of diabetic rats.

Sprague-Dawlay (SD) rats were used to establish a DMED model. The dual-luciferase reporter gene assay was first performed to identify the nerve growth factor receptor-associated protein 1 (NGFRAP1) gene as the target gene of miR-141. The regulatory mechanisms underlying miR-141 governing NGFRAP1 in vivo were then validated by modulating the expressions of miR-141 and knocking down NGFRAP1.

The expressions of miR-141 were decreased while the expressions of NGFRAP1, NGF, and p75NTR were increased in DMED. miR-141 and downregulation of NGFRAP1, respectively, increased the density of corpus cavernosum smooth muscle and the ratio of intracavernosal pressure (ICP)/mean arterial blood pressure (MAP) and promoted the expression of α-actin and desmin as well. miR-141 also upregulated the expressions of NGFRAP1 in DMED, and knockdown of NGFRAP1 inhibited the productions of NGF and p75NTR. Furthermore, miR-141 suppressed the NGF/p75NTR signaling via binding to NGFRAP1.

NGF/p75NTR signaling actively participates in the pathogenesis of DMED. miR-141 binds to NGFRAP1 and restores the erectile function of diabetic rats via downregulation of NGF/p75NTR signaling.

Journal of cellular biochemistry. 2018 Nov 13 [Epub ahead of print]

Yan Wen, Guohui Liu, Linpei Jia, Wei Ji, Hai Li

Department of Endocrinology, China-Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China., Department of Cardiology, China-Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China., Department of Nephrology, Xuanwu Hospital of Capital Medical University, Beijing, China., Department of Vascular Surgery, Jilin Provincial People's Hospital, Changchun, China., Department of Urology, China-Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China.

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