Int J Biol Sci 2017; 13(4):413-425. doi:10.7150/ijbs.17508 This issue

Research Paper

MiR-696 Regulates C2C12 Cell Proliferation and Differentiation by Targeting CNTFRα

Han Wang1, Lei Shi1, Tingting Liang1, BinBin Wang1, WangJun Wu1, Guosheng Su2, Julong Wei1, Pinghua Li1✉, Ruihua Huang1✉

1. Institute of Swine Science, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, 210095, China;
2. Center for Quantitative Genetics and Genomics, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Aarhus University, 8830 Tjele, Denmark.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) license ( See for full terms and conditions.
Wang H, Shi L, Liang T, Wang B, Wu W, Su G, Wei J, Li P, Huang R. MiR-696 Regulates C2C12 Cell Proliferation and Differentiation by Targeting CNTFRα. Int J Biol Sci 2017; 13(4):413-425. doi:10.7150/ijbs.17508. Available from

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Graphic abstract

Micro-696 (miR-696) has been previously known as an exercise related miRNA, which has a profound role in fatty acid oxidation and mitochondrial biogenesis of skeletal muscle. However, its role in skeletal myoblast proliferation and differentiation is still unclear. In this study, we found that miR-696 expressed highly in skeletal muscle and reduced during C2C12 myoblasts differentiation. MiR-696 overexpression repressed C2C12 myoblast proliferation and myofiber formation, while knockdown of endogenous miR-696 expression showed opposite results. During myogenesis, we observed an inversed expression pattern between miR-696 and CNTFRα in vitro, and demonstrated that miR-696 could specifically target CNTFRα and repress the expression of CNTFRα. Additionally, we further found that knockdown of CNTFRα suppressed the proliferation and differentiation of C2C12 cells. Taking all things together, we propose a novel insight that miR-696 down-regulates C2C12 cell myogenesis by inhibiting CNTFRα expression.

Keywords: MiR-696, CNTFRα, myoblast proliferation and differentiation.