Annals of Hematology

, Volume 92, Issue 11, pp 1439–1450 | Cite as

MicroRNAs mark in the MLL-rearranged leukemia

  • Leonidas Benetatos
  • George Vartholomatos
Review Article


MicroRNAs are short noncoding RNAs, known regulators of several signaling pathways cell differentiation and proliferation, development, and apoptosis, which are deregulated in acute leukemia. Mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene encodes a protein with histone methyltransferase activity, which is essential for the fine tuning of hematopoietic stem cell development and differentiation through the regulation of HOXA and MEIS1. MLL gene rearrangements characterize both acute myeloid and acute lymphoblastic leukemia associated with poor outcomes. MicroRNAs and MLL rearrangements are in tight association regulating each other expression, affecting cell cycle regulators, and composing complex networks with factors involved in leukemogenesis such as MYC and FLT3. MLL fusion genes are also capable of recruiting DNA methyltransferases at microRNAs promoters controlling their expression through epigenetic changes. Direct drug targeting of MLL has been difficult to achieve, and in this context, microRNA expression modulation represents an attractive approach.


MicroRNAs MLL AML ALL Methylation Histone methyltransferase 



We apologize to the authors whose work has not been cited.

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Blood BankGeneral Hospital of PrevezaPrevezaGreece
  2. 2.Molecular Biology LaboratoryUniversity Hospital of IoanninaIoanninaGreece

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