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Papers of the Week

2019 Nov 15

Int J Mol Sci



MicroRNA-29a Mitigates Subacromial Bursa Fibrosis in Rotator Cuff Lesion with Shoulder Stiffness.


Ko J-Y, Lian W-S, Tsai T-C, Chen Y-S, Hsieh C-K, Kuo C-W, Wang F-S
Int J Mol Sci. 2019 Nov 15; 20(22).
PMID: 31731750.


Rotator cuff lesion with shoulder stiffness is a major cause of shoulder pain and motionlessness. Subacromial bursa fibrosis is a prominent pathological feature of the shoulder disorder. MicroRNA-29a (miR-29a) regulates fibrosis in various tissues; however, the miR-29a action to subacromial bursa fibrosis remains elusive. Here, we reveal that subacromial synovium in patients with rotator cuff tear with shoulder stiffness showed severe fibrosis, hypertrophy, and hyperangiogenesis histopathology along with significant increases in fibrotic matrices collagen (COL) 1A1, 3A1, and 4A1 and inflammatory cytokines, whereas miR-29a expression was downregulated. Supraspinatus and infraspinatus tenotomy-injured shoulders in transgenic mice overexpressing miR-29a showed mild swelling, vascularization, fibrosis, and regular gait profiles as compared to severe rotator cuff damage in wild-type mice. Treatment with miR-29a precursor compromised COL3A1 production and hypervascularization in injured shoulders. In vitro, gain of miR-29a function attenuated COL3A1 expression through binding to the 3'-untranslated region (3'-UTR) of COL3A1 in inflamed tenocytes, whereas silencing miR-29a increased the matrix expression. Taken together, miR-29a loss is correlated with subacromial bursa inflammation and fibrosis in rotator cuff tear with shoulder stiffness. miR-29a repressed subacromial bursa fibrosis through directly targeting COL3A1 mRNA, improving rotator cuff integrity and shoulder function. Collective analysis offers a new insight into the molecular mechanism underlying rotator cuff tear with shoulder stiffness. This study also highlights the remedial potential of miR-29a precursor for alleviating the shoulder disorder.