Small molecules, big effects: The role of microRNAs in regulation of cardiomyocyte death

J. Skommer, I. Rana, F. Z. Marques, W. Zhu, Z. Du, F. J. Charchar

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small non-coding RNAs involved in posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression, and exerting regulatory roles in plethora of biological processes. In recent years, miRNAs have received increased attention for their crucial role in health and disease, including in cardiovascular disease. This review summarizes the role of miRNAs in regulation of cardiac cell death/cell survival pathways, including apoptosis, autophagy and necrosis. It is envisaged that these miRNAs may explain the mechanisms behind the pathogenesis of many cardiac diseases, and, most importantly, may provide new avenues for therapeutic intervention that will limit cardiomyocyte cell death before it irreversibly affects cardiac function. Through an indepth literature analysis coupled with integrative bioinformatics (pathway and synergy analysis), we dissect here the landscape of complex relationships between the apoptosis-regulating miRNAs in the context of cardiomyocyte cell death (including regulation of autophagy-apoptosis cross talk), and examine the gaps in our current understanding that will guide future investigations.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1325
Number of pages14
JournalCell Death & Disease
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • MicroRNAs
  • circulating miRNAs
  • Cardiac
  • Myocytes

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