Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is one of the most common life shortening conditions in Caucasians. CF is caused by mutations in the CF Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (CFTR) gene which result in reduced or altered CFTR functionality. Several microRNAs (miRNAs) downregulate the expression of CFTR, thus causing or exacerbating the symptoms of CF. In this context, the design of anti-miRNA agents represents a valid functional tool, but its translation to the clinic might lead to unpredictable side effects because of the interference with the expression of other genes regulated by the same miRNAs. Herein, for the first time, is proposed the use of peptide nucleic acids (PNAs) to protect specific sequences in the 3'UTR (untranslated region) of the CFTR messenger RNA (mRNA) by action of miRNAs. Two PNAs (7 and 13 bases long) carrying the tetrapeptide Gly-SerP-SerP-Gly at their C-end, fully complementary to the 3'UTR sequence recognized by miR-509-3p, have been synthesized and the structural features of target PNA/RNA heteroduplexes have been investigated by spectroscopic and molecular dynamics studies. The co-transfection of the pLuc-CFTR-3'UTR vector with different combinations of PNAs, miR-509-3p, and controls in A549 cells demonstrated the ability of the longer PNA to rescue the luciferase activity by up to 70% of the control, thus supporting the use of suitable PNAs to counteract the reduction in the CFTR expression.
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules22071144|
|Codice identificativo ISI:||WOS:000406621300118|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-85026292431|
|Titolo:||Peptide nucleic acids as miRNA target protectors for the treatment of cystic fibrosis|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|