Schneider E. et al.
Micro-ribonucleic acid-155 (miR-155) is one of the first described oncogenic miRNAs. Although multiple direct targets of miR-155 have been identified, it is not clear how it contributes to the pathogenesis of acute myeloid leukemia. We found miR-155 to be a direct target of Meis1 in murine Hoxa9/Meis1 induced acute myeloid leukemia. The additional overexpression of miR-155 accelerated the formation of acute myeloid leukemia in Hoxa9 as well as in Hoxa9/Meis1 cells in vivo However, in the absence or following the removal of miR-155, leukemia onset and progression were unaffected. Although miR-155 accelerated growth and homing in addition to impairing differentiation, our data underscore the pathophysiological relevance of miR-155 as an accelerator rather than a driver of leukemogenesis. This further highlights the complexity of the oncogenic program of Meis1 to compensate for the loss of a potent oncogene such as miR-155. These findings are highly relevant to current and developing approaches for targeting miR-155 in acute myeloid leukemia.