Navigation Links
Atherosclerosis: Specific microRNAs promote inflammation

Atherosclerosis, an inflammatory reaction, is at the root of the most common forms of cardiovascular disease. Researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have now identified a microRNA that plays a prominent role in the process, and offers a promising target for new therapies.

Atherosclerosis otherwise known as hardening of the arteries is a prevalent cause of death in modern societies. The condition arises from the build-up of localized fatty deposits called plaques in the arteries. Macrophages, the phagocytic cells of the immune system, migrate to these sites, inducing chronic inflammation which exacerbates the accumulation of the atherosclerotic lesions. These can lead to obstruction of major vessels, causing heart attack and stroke. A team of medical researchers led by LMU's Professor Andreas Schober has now identified a microRNA (miRNA) that helps initiate the inflammatory process.

miRNAs are short segments of RNA derived from longer precursors transcribed from defined stretches of the genomic DNA. They act as versatile regulators of gene expression in cells, and also control the function of macrophages, in which patterns of gene activity must respond rapidly to changes in the extracellular environment. "However, the miRNAs that control the inflammation process during the various stages of atherosclerosis had not been identified up to now," says Schober.

In an earlier study, Schober and his team had shown that the microRNA miR-155 is a prominent member of the miRNA population in macrophages. The molecule prevents the synthesis of a protein that inhibits the inflammatory reaction, and thus promotes the progression of atherosclerosis. However, miR-155 does not serve as the initiator of inflammation. Schober and his colleagues have now looked at the patterns of microRNA expression in atherosclerotic lesions in the mouse, and noted that levels of a different miRNA, called miR-342-5p, increase in very early plaques.

New therapeutic approaches

"The newly identified miR-342-5p is actually expressed constituently in macrophages, but it is activated by pro-inflammatory signals. This activation process then induces production of miR-155," Schober explains. The results of the new study thus make miR-342-5p an interesting target for new therapeutic agents. Indeed, in their animal model, the researchers have been able to demonstrate that inhibition of the action of miR-342-5p by means of a specific antagonist retards the progression of atherosclerosis.

"Atherosclerosis in humans should also be susceptible to treatment with inhibitors of microRNAs," Schober suggests. "Synthetic inhibitors are available for each and every microRNA, and could be used for therapeutic purposes as soon as their efficacy and safety has been demonstrated in clinical tests." Hence the researchers now plan to collaborate with biotechnology companies on the development of their own specific microRNA inhibitor for future clinical use.


Contact: Luise Dirscherl
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitt Mnchen

Related medicine news :

1. Brain waves challenge area-specific view of brain activity
2. Researchers propose a novel prognostic model for disease-specific survival in BCa patients
3. Stroke risk in elderly treated with antipsychotics is newly linked to specific drug actions
4. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges Personal Injury Law Firms To Help Them Help Injured Individuals Of A Transvaginal Mesh Failure With A State Specific Approach-The Worst Victims
5. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges Top Personal Injury Trial Lawyers To Join Their State Specific Effort To Help Victims Of A Severe Transvaginal Mesh Failure To Get Compensation
6. US Drug Watchdog Now Invites Top Personal Injury Law Firms To Join Them In A State Specific Effort To Identify And Help Victims Of A Severe Transvaginal Mesh Failure
7. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges AV Rated Law Firms To Help Them Help More Victims Of A Severe Transvaginal Mesh Failure With A State Specific Approach
8. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges Trial Law Firms To Join Them In Their Effort To Help Severely Injured Victims Of A Transvaginal Mesh Failure-With A State Specific Approach
9. Prostate-specific antigen screening: Values and techniques shape decisions
10. Specific warning signs of complications in colorectal surgical patients released
11. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges All US Recipients of All Metal Hip Implants to Get a Blood Test For Cobalt-Chromium Levels and They Offer Specific Law Firms For Failure Victims
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Dehydration, defined as a loss ... to perspiration in the hot sun, and heat stroke and death will quickly follow. ... radio host Sharon Kleyne. Every cell, system and structure requires water to function properly. ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... 2015 , ... “I am so thrilled, as a newbie here, to leave a mark for ... $7,500 School Lounge Makeover® from California Casualty . Stephanie is in her fifth year ... much longer tenure. , “This is such an amazing school and we deserve a space ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... ... and safety labels , has been featured in the American Feed ... exclusively to representing the business, legislative and regulatory interests of the U.S. animal ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... ... Add a fresh touch to this year’s holiday festivities with indoor plants ... style and cheer to any space. , Holiday plants are more than just festive ... all year long. , “Holiday plants make a room come alive,” says Justin Hancock, ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... , ... On the pleasant autumn morning of November 15, 2015, nearly 130 ... for Autism held at Steep Rock Preserve in Washington, Connecticut. The run, which offers ... triumph. , Created and hosted by The Glenholme School, a special needs boarding and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015 iRhythm Technologies, Inc. , a leading ... announced that it will participate in the 27th Annual Piper Jaffray ... New York, NY . Kevin King , Chief ... 1, 2015 at 8:50am ET. --> ... . --> . --> iRhythm is ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Teledyne DALSA , a Teledyne Technologies company ... introduce its CMOS X-Ray detector for mammography at ... December 3, at McCormick Place in Chicago ... interventional imaging will be on display in the South Hall, ... CMOS X-Ray detectors is the industry benchmark for high speed ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... uptake of recently approved and pipeline premium products for Type 1 Diabetes ... says GBI Research . --> The ... Mellitus (T1DM), will be a key driver of market growth to 2021, ... The uptake of recently approved and pipeline premium products for Type 1 ... 2021, says GBI Research . Type ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: