Aromatase inhibitor regulates let-7 expression and let-7f–induced cell migration in endometrial cells from women with endometriosis

Aromatase inhibitor treatment of cultured endometrial cells from patients with endometriosis significantly increased expression of let-7f microRNA and effectively reduced the migration of endometrial cells in vitro.

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Volume 106, Issue 3, Pages 673-680


SiHyun Cho, M.D., Levent Mutlu, M.D., Yuping Zhou, B.S., Hugh S. Taylor, M.D.



To evaluate associations between aromatase inhibitor (AI) treatment and let-7–family microRNA expression in endometriosis.


In vitro study with the use of Ishikawa cells and human endometrial stromal cells (HESCs) obtained from patients with endometriosis.


University research center.


Women undergoing laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis.


HESCs and Ishikawa cells treated with various letrozole concentrations and transfected with a mimic of let-7 subtypes of interest.

Main Outcome Measure(s)

MicroRNAs let-7a–f and aromatase expression were evaluated. Migration potential after transfection with alet-7f mimic were analyzed.


After letrozole treatment for 48 hours, all let-7 subtypes showed a trend toward increased expression in a dose-dependent manner in Ishikawa cells, and significant differences were found in let-7b and let-7f between the control and 20 μmol/L treatment groups. Furthermore, let-7f showed significant differences between the control group and 1.0 μmol/L treatment group, a typical therapeutic level, in HESCs. Transfection of a let-7fmimic decreased aromatase expression in both Ishikawa cells and HESCs and led to a significant decrease in number of migrating cells in both cell types.


AI treatment significantly increased expression of let-7f in Ishikawa cells and HESCs from patients with endometriosis; increased let-7f expression effectively reduced the migration of endometrial cells. Modulation of microRNAs involved in the pathogenesis of endometriosis may have therapeutic potential for endometriosis.

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Fertility and Sterility

Editorial Office, American Society for Reproductive Medicine

Fertility and Sterility® is an international journal for obstetricians, gynecologists, reproductive endocrinologists, urologists, basic scientists and others who treat and investigate problems of infertility and human reproductive disorders.