Bromodomain Containing 4 (BRD4) mediates transcriptional elongation of the oncogene MYC by binding to acetylated histones. BRD4 has been shown to play a critical role in tumorigenesis in several cancers, and the BRD4-NUT fusion gene is a driver of NUT midline carcinoma (NMC), a rare but highly lethal cancer. microRNAs (miRNAs) are endogenous small non-coding RNAs that suppress target gene expression by binding to complementary mRNA sequences. Here, we show that miR-3140, which was identified as a novel tumor suppressive miRNA by function-based screening of a library containing 1090 miRNA mimics, directly suppressed BRD4 by binding to its coding sequence (CDS). miR-3140 concurrently downregulated BRD3 by bind to its CDS as well as CDK2 and EGFR by binding to their 3' untranslated regions. miR-3140 inhibited tumor cell growth in vitro in various cancer cell lines, including EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor-resistant cells. Interestingly, we found that miR-3140 downregulated the BRD4-NUT fusion protein and suppressed in vitro tumor cell growth in a NMC cell line, Ty-82 cells. Furthermore, administration of miR-3140 suppressed in vivo tumor growth in a xenograft mouse model. Our results suggest that miR-3140 is a candidate for the development of miRNA-based cancer therapeutics.

Citation Format: Tomoki Muramatsu, Erina Tonouchi, Yasuyuki Gen, Hidekazu Hiramoto, Kousuke Tanimoto, Jun Inoue, Johji Inazawa. miR-3140 suppresses tumor cell growth by targeting BRD4 via its coding sequence and downregulates the BRD4-NUT fusion oncoprotein [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting 2018; 2018 Apr 14-18; Chicago, IL. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2018;78(13 Suppl):Abstract nr LB-385.