Multi-omics profiling reveals microRNA-mediated insulin signaling networks

Yang Chi Dung Lin, Hsi Yuan Huang, Sirjana Shrestha, Chih Hung Chou, Yen Hua Chen, Chi Ru Chen, Hsiao Chin Hong, Jing Li, Yi An Chang, Men Yee Chiew, Ya Rong Huang, Siang Jyun Tu, Ting Hsuan Sun, Shun Long Weng, Ching-Ping Tseng, Hsien Da Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play a key role in mediating the action of insulin on cell growth and the development of diabetes. However, few studies have been conducted to provide a comprehensive overview of the miRNA-mediated signaling network in response to glucose in pancreatic beta cells. In our study, we established a computational framework integrating multi-omics profiles analyses, including RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) and small RNA sequencing (sRNA-seq) data analysis, inverse expression pattern analysis, public data integration, and miRNA targets prediction to illustrate the miRNA-mediated regulatory network at different glucose concentrations in INS-1 pancreatic beta cells (INS-1), which display important characteristics of the pancreatic beta cells. Results: We applied our computational framework to the expression profiles of miRNA/mRNA of INS-1, at different glucose concentrations. A total of 1437 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and 153 differentially expressed miRNAs (DEmiRs) were identified from multi-omics profiles. In particular, 121 DEmiRs putatively regulated a total of 237 DEGs involved in glucose metabolism, fatty acid oxidation, ion channels, exocytosis, homeostasis, and insulin gene regulation. Moreover, Argonaute 2 immunoprecipitation sequencing, qRT-PCR, and luciferase assay identified Crem, Fn1, and Stc1 are direct targets of miR-146b and elucidated that miR-146b acted as a potential regulator and promising target to understand the insulin signaling network. Conclusions: In this study, the integration of experimentally verified data with system biology framework extracts the miRNA network for exploring potential insulin-associated miRNA and their target genes. The findings offer a potentially significant effect on the understanding of miRNA-mediated insulin signaling network in the development and progression of pancreatic diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number389
JournalBMC Bioinformatics
StatePublished - 17 Sep 2020


  • Multi-omics
  • Pancreatic beta-cell
  • RNA-seq
  • miRNA


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