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Alterations in lipid and miRNA content in cervical epithelial cell lines

Katarzyna Sitarz

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer among women. Scientific data show the coexistence of cancer with HPV infection in more than
99% of cases. In previous studies of cervical epithelial cells using Raman microscopy and molecular methods, we have proved that pathological
changes are associated with changes in glycogen and lipid metabolism1-2. The methylation of the SREBF1 gene and the copy number of the mi-
tochondrial genome are also related to these changes.
In this experiment, we used cervical cancer cell lines differing in HPV-16 infection status and the number of HPV genome copies per cell: CaSKi
(HPV-16-positive; high copy number), SiHa (HPV-16-positive; low copy number), C33A (HPV-16-negative) and HaCaT cells as a control (keratino-
cytes). The methods used were Raman microscopy, to visualize and calculate the content of biocompounds in cells3-4, and qPCR, to determine
the level of miRNAs (miR-124, miR-143, miR-199a) that are associated with cancer and lipid metabolism. The aims of the research were to deter-
mine the relationship between miRNAs and changes in the metabolism of cervical epithelial cells and their relationship with cancer.
The results showed that the C33A cells have the highest lipid content. This is correlated with the increased level of miR-124, which is responsi-
ble for inhibiting beta-oxidation. On the other hand, both, miR-143 and miR-199a exhibit the highest levels in normal cells (HaCaT), which may
indicate their effect on inhibiting cell division and promoting apoptosis. An interesting observation is the statistically significant highest content
of triacylglycerols in the lipid droplets of SiHa cells. This research, and its follow-up in the future, may shed more light on miRNA involvement in

Published Date: 2021-12-14;