Current Molecular Biology Reports

, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 65–74 | Cite as

MicroRNAs Are Critical Regulators of Osteoclast Differentiation

  • Henry C. Hrdlicka
  • Sun-Kyeong Lee
  • Anne M. DelanyEmail author
MicroRNAs in Skeletal Development (A Delany, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on MicroRNAs in Skeletal Development


Purpose of Review

Our goal is to comprehensively review the most recent reports of microRNA (miRNA) regulation of osteoclastogenesis. We highlight validated miRNA-target interactions and their place in the signaling networks controlling osteoclast differentiation and function.

Recent Findings

Using unbiased approaches to identify miRNAs of interest and reporter-3′UTR assays to validate interactions, recent studies have elucidated the impact of specific miRNA-mRNA interactions during in vitro osteoclastogenesis. There has been a focus on signaling mediators downstream of the RANK and CSF1R signaling, and genes essential for differentiation and function. For example, several miRNAs directly and indirectly target the master osteoclast transcription factor, Nfatc1 (e.g., miR-124 and miR-214) and Rho-GTPases, Cdc42, and Rac1 (e.g., miR-29 family).


Validating miRNA expression patterns, targets, and impact in osteoclasts and other skeletal cells is critical for understanding basic bone biology and for fulfilling the therapeutic potential of miRNA-based strategies in the treatment bone diseases.


Osteoclast Differentiation Fusion miRNA Non-coding RNA Microarray 



The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health. The authors thank Dr. Julia Charles (Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA) for her careful review of the manuscript.

Funding information

This work was supported by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health [AR064867, AMD/SKL]; the National Institutes for Dental and Craniofacial Research [T90DE21989]; and the Center for Molecular Oncology at UConn Health.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Henry C. Hrdlicka, Sun-Kyeong Lee, and Anne M. Delany each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henry C. Hrdlicka
    • 1
  • Sun-Kyeong Lee
    • 2
  • Anne M. Delany
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Center for Molecular Oncology, UConn HealthFarmingtonUSA
  2. 2.Center on Aging, UConn HealthFarmingtonUSA

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