Research Paper Volume 15, Issue 22 pp 12780—12793

Hypoxic BMSC-derived exosomal miR-652-3p promotes proliferation and metastasis of hepatocarcinoma cancer cells via targeting TNRC6A

Mei Li1, *, , Pengtao Zhai1, *, , Xudong Mu1, , Juanrong Song1, , Huilin Zhang2, , Juan Su3, ,

  • 1 Department of Minimally Invasive, Shaanxi Cancer Hospital, Xi’an 710061, Shaanxi, China
  • 2 Digestive Endoscopy Treatment Center, Xi’an International Medical Center Hospital, Gaoxin, Xi’an 710100, Shaanxi, China
  • 3 Department of Gastroenterology, Xi’an International Medical Center Hospital, Gaoxin, Xi’an 710100, Shaanxi, China
* Equal contribution

Received: September 21, 2022       Accepted: August 20, 2023       Published: November 16, 2023
How to Cite

Copyright: © 2023 Li et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Cancer microenvironment plays an important role in the proliferation and metastasis of hepatocarcinoma cancer cells (HCC). Exosomes from bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) are a component of the cancer microenvironment. In this study, we reveal that miRNA-652-3P from BMSC-derived exosomes promotes proliferation and metastasis in HCC. The ability of cancer proliferation, migration and invasion can be evaluated after co-culture by CCK-8, wound healing and transwell assay. Isolated exosomes were identified by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and the biomarkers of the purified exosomes were showed in West-blotting (WB). MiR-652-3p was detected in the HepG2 and 7721 after co-culturing with exosome derived from BMSCs under different conditions. Target authentication was performed by a luciferase reporter assay to confirm the presumptive target of miR-652-3p. After overexpressing miR-652-3p, the mRNA and protein expression level of TNRC6A in HCC was examined by q-PCR and WB. Further, we observed greater miR-652-3p upregulation in hypoxic BMSCs-exosomes than in normal- exosomes. In addition, a miR-652-3p inhibitor attenuates the proliferation and metastasis of HCC cells after co-culturing with BMSCs. Our data demonstrate that hypoxic BMSCs-derived exosomal miR-652-3p promotes proliferation in HCC cells by inhibiting TNRC6A. The BMSCs-derived exosomal miR-652-3p may help find patient-targeted therapies in hepatocarcinoma cancer.


HCC: hepatocarcinoma cancer cells; BMSCs: bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells; TEM: transmission electron microscopy; WB: West-blotting; CLL: chronic lymphocytic leukemia.