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MicroRNAs and intestinal pathophysiology

Abstract : MicroRNAs (miRNAs) represent an abundant class of endogenously expressed small RNAs, which is believed to control the expression of proteins through specific interaction with their mRNAs. MiRNAs are non-coding RNAs of 18 to 24 nucleotides that negatively regulate target mRNAs by binding to their 3'-untranslated regions (UTR). Most eukaryotic cells utilize miRNA to regulate vital functions such as cell differentiation, proliferation or apopotosis. The diversity of miRNAs and of their mRNA targets strongly indicate that they play a key role in the regulation of protein expression. To date, more than 500 different miRNAs have been identified in animals and plants. There are at least 326 miRNAs in the human genome, comprising 1-4% of all expressed human genes, which makes miRNAs one of the largest classes of gene regulators. A single miRNA can bind to and regulate many different mRNA targets and, conversely, several different miRNAs can bind to and cooperatively control a single mRNA target. The correlation between the expression of miRNAs and their effects on tumorigenesis and on the proliferation of cancer cells is beginning to gain experimental evidences. Recent studies showed that abnormal expression of miRNAs represents a common feature of cancer cells and that they can function as tumor suppressor genes or as oncogenes. Therefore, this diversity of action for miRNAs on several target genes could be one of the common mechanisms involved in the deregulation of protein expression observed during intestinal disorders. In this review, the emergent functions of miRNAs in colorectal cancer and their potential role in the intestinal inflammatory process are discussed.
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Contributor : Eric Ogier-Denis <>
Submitted on : Monday, June 11, 2007 - 10:13:11 AM
Last modification on : Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 2:24:53 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, April 8, 2010 - 5:18:03 PM


  • HAL Id : inserm-00153383, version 1
  • PUBMED : 17502067



Eric Ogier-Denis, Magali Fasseu, Alain Vandewalle, Marc Laburthe. MicroRNAs and intestinal pathophysiology. médecine/sciences, EDP Sciences, 2007, 23 (5), pp.509. ⟨inserm-00153383⟩



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