The Role of microRNAs in Cardiovascular Disease

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Abstract:

Cardiovascular disease, which is multifactorial and can be influenced by a multitude of environmental and heritable risk factors, remains a major health problem, even though its pathophysiology is far from been elucidated. Discovered just over a decade ago, microRNAs comprise short, non-coding RNAs, which have evoked a great deal of interest, due to their importance for many aspects of homeostasis and disease. Hundreds of different microRNAs are constantly being reported in various organisms. According to a growing body of literature, they have been implicated in the regulation of human physiological processes. More specifically, miRNAs are expressed in the cardiovascular system and could have crucial roles in normal development and physiology, as well as in disease development. Furthermore, they have been shown to participate in cardiovascular disease pathogenesis including atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, myocardial infarction, heart failure and cardiac arrhythmias. In contrast to our original thought, miRNAs exist in circulating blood and are relatively stable, thus, they could be proved useful as biomarkers in that state. Understanding the underlying mechanisms, in which these major regulatory gene families are implicated, will provide novel opportunities for diagnosis and therapy of cardiovascular diseases.

Keywords: Biomarker; Cardiovascular; Diagnosis; arrhythmias; heritable risk factors; miRNAs; morbidity; non-coding RNAs; pathophysiology; physiological

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/092986712800493048

Affiliations: Cardiology Department, Hippokration Hospital, Athens University Medical School, Athens, Greece.

Publication date: June 1, 2012

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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