Review

Cellular Oncology

, Volume 35, Issue 5, pp 317-334

Aberrant microRNA expression and its implications in the pathogenesis of leukemias

  • Sadegh BabashahAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular Genetics, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University Email author 
  • , Majid SadeghizadehAffiliated withDepartment of Molecular Genetics, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University
  • , Mostafa Rezaei TaviraniAffiliated withProteomics Research Center, Faculty of Paramedical Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences
  • , Shirin FarivarAffiliated withFaculty of Biological Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University, G.C.
  • , Masoud SoleimaniAffiliated withDepartment of Hematology, School of Medical Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University Email author 

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Abstract

Background

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of non-coding, endogenous, small RNAs that negatively regulate gene expression by inducing degradation or translational inhibition of target mRNAs. Aberrant expression of miRNAs appears to be a common characteristic of hematological malignancies including leukemias.

Aim

Here we review the available data supporting a role of aberrant expression of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of leukemias including acute myeloid leukemia (AML), acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

Conclusions

The expression signatures of miRNAs provide exciting opportunities in the diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy of leukemia. Since miRNAs can function as either oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes in leukemogenesis, the potential of using these small RNAs as therapeutic targets opens up new opportunities for leukemia therapy by either inhibiting or augmenting their activity.

Keywords

MicroRNA Expression signature Acute myeloid leukemia Acute lymphoblastic leukemia Chronic myeloid leukemia Chronic lymphocytic leukemia