Background: The goal was to investigate the expression of plasma miR-221 and miR-320 in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and to further explore the relationship between miRNA and risk factors for GDM.
Methods: This study included 85 GDM and 85 age-matched normal pregnant women who visited our hospital from January 2019 to January 2020. Real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) was used to determine the expression of miR-221 and miR-320 in the plasma of pregnant women. The correlation analysis was used to detect the relationship between miR-221, miR-320, and risk factors of GDM, including homeostatic model assessment for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), percentage of glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c), and the prepregnancy BMI. The receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) was used to determine the diagnostic value of miR-320 and miR-221 in GDM.
Results: Compared with normal pregnant women, the expression of miR-221 and miR-320 in GDM was significantly higher (p < 0.05). The results also demonstrate that the expression of miR-221 and miR-320 increases grad-ually with the development of pregnancy in GDM at 24 weeks, 28 weeks, and 32 weeks (p < 0.05). Spearman’s correlation analysis confirmed that the expression level of miR-221 and miR-320 in the plasma of GDM is positively correlated with the HOMA-IR and HbA1c, but has no significant correlation with pre-pregnancy BMI. The area under the curve (AUC) values of miR-221 and miR-320 were 0.862 and 0.853, respectively. Meanwhile, the area under the combined detection curve is 0.904.
Conclusions: Plasma miR-221 and miR-320 are significantly elevated in GDM, and are positively correlated with HbA1c and HOMA-IR. The high expression of miR-221 and miR-320 in the peripheral plasma of pregnant women may directly or indirectly participate in the occurrence and development of GDM or may become a new target for the diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of GDM.