Identification of Urothelial Cancer-Associated 1 (UCA1) as a diagnostic biomarker of pre-eclampsia via regulating microRNA-16 and its downstream signaling pathway
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Department of Obstetrics, Northwest Women’s and Children’s Hospital, Xi’an, Shaanxi, China 710061
Department of Obstetrics, The First People’s Hospital of Xianyang City, Xianyang, Shaanxi, China 712000
Liao-jv Wang   

Department of Obstetrics, The First People’s Hospital of Xianyang City, Xianyang, Shaanxi, China 712000
Submission date: 2019-03-28
Final revision date: 2019-07-28
Acceptance date: 2019-07-28
Online publication date: 2021-03-24
In this study, we studied the clinical value of using urothelial cancer-associated 1 (UCA1) and microRNA-16 (miR-16) as biomarkers for the diagnosis of pre-eclampsia (PE). Also, we compared the diagnostic values of miR-16, UCA1 and pregnancy-associated plasma protein-A (PAPP-A) in PE. Furthermore, we investigated the interaction between miR-16 and UCA1/PAPP-A.

Material and methods:
128 PE patients and 172 healthy pregnant women were enrolled in this study. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis was carried out to predict the diagnostic values of UCA1, miR-16 and PAPP-A in PE. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), Western blot analysis, immunohistochemistry (IHC) assay, computational analysis, and luciferase assay were conducted to measure the differential expression of UCA1, miR-16, and PAPP-A while establishing a signaling pathway of UCA1/miR-16/PAPP-A.

Compared with miR-16 and PAPP-A, UCA1 exhibited a better value in the diagnosis of PE. The expression of PAPP-A and UCA1 was down-regulated while the expression of miR-16 was up-regulated in patients with PE, especially in patients with HELLP pregnancies. Moreover, UCA1 was identified as a sponge of miR-16, while PAPP-A mRNA was identified as a virtual target gene of miR-16. Finally, a negative regulatory relationship was observed between the expression of miR-16 and UCA1 or PAPP-A, while the expression of UCA1 and PAPP-A were positively related.

Taken together, UCA1 could be used as a more valuable biomarker in the diagnosis of PE. Meanwhile, the reduced expression of UCA1 could exert a positive effect by reducing the expression of PAPP-A in the pathogenesis of PE.