J Anim Sci Biotechnol. 2021 Sep 8;12(1):102.doi:10.1186/s40104-021-00618-7.

The circular RNA circCPE regulates myoblast development by sponging miR-138

Wenxiu Ru  1 Ao Qi  1 Xuemei Shen  1 Binglin Yue  1 Xiaoyan Zhang  1 Jian Wang  1 Hui Cao  2 Hong Chen  3 Affiliations

Free PMC article


Background: Skeletal muscle development, a long-term and complex process, is controlled by a set of the myogenic genes. Circular RNAs (circRNAs), a class of noncoding RNA, have been shown to regulate various biological processes. Recent studies indicate circRNAs may be involved in myogenesis, but the role and regulatory mechanism of circRNAs in myogenesis is largely unknown. In the present study, circCPE was firstly found to promote the bovine myoblast proliferation and inhibit cell apoptosis and differentiation by influencing the expression of FOXC1 in a miR138-mediated manner. And in vivo experiments revealed that overexpression of circCPE attenuates skeletal muscle regeneration.

Results: We identified a novel circular RNA circCPE by analyzing circRNAs sequencing data of bovine muscle tissue. Sequencing verification, RNase R treatment and Actinomycin D treatment confirmed the circular nature of circCPE in bovine muscle. Functional assays showed that overexpression of circCPE could inhibit bovine myoblast apoptosis and differentiation, as well as facilitate cell proliferation. Moreover, in vivo experiments revealed that overexpression of circCPE attenuates skeletal muscle regeneration. In consideration of circRNA action as miRNAs sponge, we found that circCPE harbors miR-138 binding sites and absorbed miR-138. Mechanistically, the rescue experiments showed that the overexpression of circCPE can counteract the inhibitory effect of miR-138 on the cell proliferation and the accelerated effects on the differentiation and apoptosis. Subsequently, we found that circCPE sequester the inhibitory effect of miR-138 on FOXC1 so as to involve in myogenesis.

Conclusions: Collectively, we constructed a novel circCPE/miR-138/FOXC1 regulatory network in bovine myogenesis, which further provide stronger evidence that circRNA involved in muscle development acting as miRNA sponge.

Keywords: Apoptosis; Bovine; CircRNA; Differentiation; MiR-138; Proliferation.