The role of microRNAs in the initiation and progression of stable atheromatous plaque

Nikolaos Papageorgiou, Dimitris Tousoulis, Emmanuel Androulakis, Anna Kontogeorgou, Marietta Charakida, Anastasios Giolis, Katerina Siama, Athanasios Trikas, Alexandros Briasoulis, Christos Pitsavos, Christodoulos Stefanadis
Current Pharmaceutical Design 2013, 19 (9): 1651-7
Atherosclerosis is a chronic process related to several underlying mechanisms leading to the formation and evolution of atherosclerotic plaque. Of great interest are during the last years short, non-coding RNAs, called microRNAs and responsible for several aspects of homeostasis and disease. According to the available data microRNAs are expressed in the cardiovascular system and have key roles in normal states, as well as in disease development and progression. Moreover, it has been shown that they contribute to atherogenesis, coronary artery disease and myocardial infarction. Importantly, microRNAs circulate in the bloodstream, while they exist in tissues, affect plaque initiation and progression and seem to be essential biomarkers of atherosclerosis. Therefore, understanding the role of these molecules may be of great importance in the understanding of the pathogenesis of atheromatous plaque providing new evidence for diagnosis and treatment of atherosclerosis and its' clinical presentation.

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