Chromatin accessibility is associated with the changed expression of miRNAs that target members of the Hippo pathway during myoblast differentiation

Huanhuan Zhou, Yue Xiang, Mingyang Hu, Yueyuan Xu, Ye Hou, Xiaolong Qi, Liangliang Fu, Yu Luan, Zhangxu Wang, Xinyun Li, Yunxia Zhao, Shuhong Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


miRNAs reportedly participate in various biological processes, such as skeletal muscle proliferation and differentiation. However, the regulation of differentially expressed (DE) miRNAs and their function in myogenesis remain unclear. Herein, miRNA expression profiles and regulation during C2C12 differentiation were analyzed in relation to chromatin states by RNA-seq, ATAC-seq, and ChIP-seq. We identified 19 known and nine novel differentially expressed miRNAs at days 0, 1, 2, and 4. The expression of the differentially expressed miRNAs was related to the chromatin states of the 113 surrounding open chromatin regions defined by ATAC-seq peaks. Of these open chromatin regions, 44.25% were colocalized with MyoD/MyoG binding sites. The remainder of the above open chromatin regions were enriched with motifs of the myoblast-expressed AP-1 family, Ctcf, and Bach2 transcription factors (TFs). Additionally, the target genes of the above differentially expressed miRNAs were enriched primarily in muscle growth and development pathways, especially the Hippo signaling pathway. Moreover, via combining a loss-of-function assay with Q-PCR, western blotting, and immunofluorescence, we confirmed that the Hippo signaling pathway was responsible for C2C12 myoblast differentiation. Thus, our results showed that these differentially expressed miRNAs were regulated by chromatin states and affected muscle differentiation through the Hippo signaling pathway. Our findings provide new insights into the function of these differentially expressed miRNAs and the regulation of their expression during myoblast differentiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number148
JournalCell Death and Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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