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The plasma miR-122 basal levels respond to circulating catecholamine in rats

By Xu Peng, Qiao Li, Song Lu, Xueling He, Sisi Yu, Zhihui Zhang, Guohui Xu, Lu Li, Tinghan Yang, Jiang Zhu, Wenli Zhu, Zhigang Wu, Delun Luo, Jie Zhu, Binghe Xu, Jian Huang, Hailin Yin, Kai Xu

Posted 31 Jan 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/257402

miR-122 in circulation is a promising non-invasive biomarker as a replacement or supplement of current serum biomarkers for liver injuries. But the concept was questioned by recent studies, mainly due to its release from hepatocytes in absence of overt cellular injuries. In this study, we reported that the hepatic metabolism of circulating catecholamines resulted in the release of hepatocyte-specific miR-122. Acute stress-induced hepatocellular deformation was histopathologically different from drug-induced liver injury with significant increases of plasma miR-122 levels. The basal levels of human plasma miR-122 could be significantly altered by emotional responses. Interday variances of plasma miR-122 measurements were reduced effectively by stress-relief measures. The metabolism of basal circulating norepinephrine and epinephrine in liver might contribute to the basal levels of plasma miRNAs expressed in hepatocytes.

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