In this study, we compared the microRNA (miRNA) profiles of a control and X-ray-and carbon ion beam-resistant cells to identify miRNAs that can be used as radiosensitizers and biomarkers. Mouse squamous cell carcinoma line NR-S1, its X-ray-resistant derivative X60, and its carbon ion beam-resistant derivative C30 were subjected to miRNA microarray analysis. Expression of miRNAs shown to be upregulated or downregulated in the microarray analysis was confirmed by qRT-PCR. Downregulated miRNAs were overexpressed in human pancreatic cancer cell lines PANC1 and MIA PaCa-2, and the resulting cells were tested for radiosensitivity using colony-forming and sphere-forming assays. Of 1,265 miRNAs analyzed, 4 were downregulated and 11 were upregulated in X-ray-resistant and carbon ion beam-resistant cells. Two of the downregulated miRNAs, miR-196 and miR-374, were selected for overexpression in PANC1 and MIA PaCa-2 cells. Overexpression of miR-374 sensitized PANC-1 and MIA PaCa-2 cells toward carbon ion beam radiation. miRNA miR-374 has the potential to be a new radiosensitizer for carbon ion beam radiotherapy and a new biomarker to determine the optimal treatment for cancer.
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