MicroRNA-129 modulates neuronal migration by targeting Fmr1 in the developing mouse cortex.
Wu C1, Zhang X1, Chen P1, Ruan X1, Liu W1, Li Y1, Sun C1, Hou L1, Yin B1, Qiang B1, Shu P2, Peng X3,4
Cell Death Dis. 2019 Mar 25;10(4):287.
During cortical development, neuronal migration is one of the most important steps for normal cortical formation and function, and defects in this process cause many brain diseases. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying this process remain largely unknown. In this study, we found that miR-129-5p and miR-129-3p were expressed in both neural progenitor cells and cortical neurons in the developing murine cortex. Moreover, abnormal miR-129 expression could block radial migration of both the deeper layer and upper layer neurons, and impair the multipolar to bipolar transition. However, antagomir-mediated inhibition resulted in overmigration of neurons. In addition, we showed that Fragile X Mental Retardation gene 1 (Fmr1), which is mutated in the autism spectrum disorder fragile X syndrome, is an important regulatory target for miR-129-5p. Furthermore, Fmr1 loss-of-function and gain-of-function experiments showed opposite effects on miR-129 regulation of neuronal migration, and restoring Fmr1 expression could counteract the deleterious effect of miR-129 on neuronal migration. Taken together, our results suggest that miR-129-5p could modulate the expression of fragile X mental retardation 1 protein (FMRP) to ensure normal neuron positioning in the developing cerebral cortex.