Colorectal cancer (CRC) is among the most widespread malignancies in the world. MicroRNA (miRNA) has been identified as an important modulator of the biological processes of the cells. This group of noncoding RNAs also has a pivotal function in the growth and development of human cancers, including CRC. Among these miRNAs, miR-196, miR-132, miR-146a, and miR-134 have fundamental impacts on the regulation of cancers. The current study aimed to investigate the involvement of these miRNAs in CRC patients.
In this study, 50 pairs of tumor and tumor margin samples of CRC patients were investigated to assess the expression levels of miR-196, miR-132, miR-146a, and miR-134 in this cancer. For this purpose, firstly, quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) was applied. Also, KRAS mutation and clinicopathological characteristics of the CRC patients were analyzed in the study groups.
The findings demonstrated the overexpression of miR-196 (P-value = 0.0045) and miR-146a (P-value = 0.0033) in tumor tissues compared to controls. Conversely, the expression levels of miR-132 (P-value = 0.00032) and miR-134 (P-value < 0.0001) were downregulated in tumor tissues. Also, miR-146a was the only miRNA with significant expression change in the case of the KRAS gene mutation. Interestingly, the expression ratio of these miRNAs was significantly associated with some of the clinicopathological features of the patients, such as lymph node and distant metastases.
Our data demonstrated that these miRNAs appear to be promising novel biomarkers for early diagnosis of CRC and may pave the way for the future establishment of novel therapeutic options for CRC.