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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 360302, 12 pages
Research Article

Microarray Analysis of mRNA and MicroRNA Expression Profile Reveals the Role of β-Sitosterol-D-glucoside in the Proliferation of Neural Stem Cell

1Medical College of Jinan University, 601 Huangpu Road West, Guangzhou 510632, China
2Department of Pharmacognosy, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Nanjing 210038, China
3Basic Medical College of Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Nanjing 210038, China
4Jiangsu Province Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Nanjing 210029, China

Received 11 June 2013; Accepted 27 September 2013

Academic Editor: Xiang-Yu Hou

Copyright © 2013 Li-hua Jiang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Neural stem cells (NSCs) are self-regenerating cells, but their regenerative capacity is limited. The present study was conducted to investigate the effect of β-sitosterol-D-glucoside (BSSG) on the proliferation of hippocampal NSCs and to determine the corresponding molecular mechanism. Results of CCK-8 assay showed that BSSG significantly increased NSC proliferation and the effectiveness of BSSG was similar to that of basic fibroblast growth factor and epidermal growth factor. mRNA expression profiling showed that 960 genes were differentially expressed after NSCs were treated with BSSG. Among the 960 genes, IGF1 is considered as a key regulatory gene that functionally promotes NSC proliferation. MicroRNA (miRNA) expression profiling indicated that 30 and 84 miRNAs were upregulated and downregulated, respectively. miRNA-mRNA relevance analysis revealed that numerous mRNAs including IGF1 mRNA were negatively regulated by miRNAs with decreased expression, thereby increasing the corresponding mRNA expression. The increased expression of IGF1 protein was validated by ELISA. Picropodophyllin (PPP, an inhibitor of IGF-1R) inhibition test confirmed that the proliferation-enhancing effect depended on IGF1. This study provided information about BSSG as an efficient and inexpensive growth factor alternative, of which the effect is closely involved in IGF1.