Journal Article

Ethanol Exposure Induces Upregulation of Specific MicroRNAs in Zebrafish Embryos

Ana Raquel Soares, Patrícia M. Pereira, Violeta Ferreira, Marisa Reverendo, João Simões, Ana Rita Bezerra, Gabriela R. Moura and Manuel A. S. Santos

in Toxicological Sciences

Volume 127, issue 1, pages 18-28
Published in print May 2012 | ISSN: 1096-6080
Published online February 2012 | e-ISSN: 1096-0929 | DOI:
Ethanol Exposure Induces Upregulation of Specific MicroRNAs in Zebrafish Embryos

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Medical Toxicology
  • Toxicology (Non-medical)


Show Summary Details


Prenatal exposure to ethanol leads to a myriad of developmental disorders known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, often characterized by growth and mental retardation, central nervous system damage, and specific craniofacial dysmorphic features. The mechanisms of ethanol toxicity are not fully understood, but exposure during development affects the expression of several genes involved in cell cycle control, apoptosis, and transcriptional regulation. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are implicated in some of these processes, however, it is not yet clear if they are involved in ethanol-induced toxicity. In order to clarify this question, we have exposed zebrafish embryos to ethanol and evaluated whether a miRNA deregulation signature could be obtained. Zebrafish embryos were exposed to 1 and 1.5% of ethanol from 4 h postfertilization (hpf) to 24 hpf. The miRNA expression profiles obtained reveal significant miRNA deregulation and show that both ethanol concentrations upregulate miR-153a, miR-725, miR-30d, let-7k, miR-100, miR-738, and miR-732. Putative gene targets of deregulated miRNAs are involved in cell cycle control, apoptosis, and transcription, which are the main processes affected by ethanol toxicity. The conservation of affected mechanisms among vertebrates leads us to postulate that similar miRNA deregulation occurs in humans, highlighting a relevant role of miRNAs in ethanol toxicology.

Keywords: ethanol toxicity; microRNAs; zebrafish; apoptosis

Journal Article.  6094 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Toxicology ; Toxicology (Non-medical)

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.