IMR Press / FBL / Volume 17 / Issue 7 / DOI: 10.2741/4068

Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

MicroRNAs: molecular features and role in cancer
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1 INSERM, U836, Team7 Nanomedicine and Brain, BP 170, Grenoble Cedex 9, F-38042, France
2 Universite Joseph Fourier, Institut des Neurosciences, BP 170, Grenoble Cedex 9, F-38042, France
3 Clinical Transcriptomics and Proteomics Facilities, Institut de Biologie et Pathologie, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire and Grenoble Institut des Neurosciences, Grenoble, France
4 CNRS, 25 rue des Martyrs, Grenoble Cedex 9, F-38042, France
Academic Editor:Didier Wion
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2012, 17(7), 2508–2540;
Published: 1 June 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer cell biology)

microRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding endogenously produced RNAs that play key roles in controlling the expression of many cellular proteins. Once they are recruited and incorporated into a ribonucleoprotein complex miRISC, they can target specific mRNAs in a miRNA sequence-dependent process and interfere in the translation into proteins of the targeted mRNAs via several mechanisms. Consequently, miRNAs can regulate many cellular pathways and processes. Dysregulation of their physiological roles may largely contribute to disease. In particular, in cancer, miRNAs can be involved in the deregulation of the expression of important genes that play key roles in tumorigenesis, tumor development, and angiogenesis and have oncogenic or tumor suppressor roles. This review focuses on the biogenesis and maturation of miRNAs, their mechanisms of gene regulation, and the way their expression is deregulated in cancer. The involvement of miRNAs in several oncogenic pathways such as angiogenesis and apoptosis, and in the inter-cellular dialog mediated by miRNA-loaded exosomes as well as the development of new therapeutical strategies based on miRNAs will be discussed.

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