MicroRNA-150 and its target ETS-domain transcription factor 1 contribute to inflammation in diabetic photoreceptors. Academic Article uri icon


  • Obesity-associated type 2 diabetes (T2D) is on the rise in the United States due to the obesity epidemic, and 60% of T2D patients develop diabetic retinopathy (DR) in their lifetime. Chronic inflammation is a hallmark of obesity and T2D and a well-accepted major contributor to DR, and retinal photoreceptors are a major source of intraocular inflammation and directly contribute to vascular abnormalities in diabetes. However, how diabetic insults cause photoreceptor inflammation is not well known. In this study, we used a high-fat diet (HFD)-induced T2D mouse model and cultured photoreceptors treated with palmitic acid (PA) to decipher major players that mediate high-fat-induced photoreceptor inflammation. We found that PA-elicited microRNA-150 (miR-150) decreases with a consistent upregulation of ETS-domain transcription factor 1 (Elk1), a downstream target of miR-150, in PA-elicited photoreceptor inflammation. We compared wild-type (WT) and miR-150 null (miR-150-/- ) mice fed with an HFD and found that deletion of miR-150 exacerbated HFD-induced photoreceptor inflammation in conjunction with upregulated ELK1. We further delineated the critical cellular localization of phosphorylated ELK1 at serine 383 (pELK1S383 ) and found that decreased miR-150 exacerbated the T2D-induced inflammation in photoreceptors by upregulating ELK1 and pELK1S383 , and knockdown of ELK1 alleviated PA-elicited photoreceptor inflammation.

published proceedings

  • J Cell Mol Med

author list (cited authors)

  • Yu, F., Ko, M. L., & Ko, G.

citation count

  • 4

complete list of authors

  • Yu, Fei||Ko, Michael L||Ko, Gladys Y-P

publication date

  • November 2021