The function of microRNAs in cartilage and osteoarthritis

Tracey Swingler, Lingzi Niu, Perry Smith, Paige Paddy, Linh Le, Matthew Barter, David Young, Ian Clark

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

111 Citations (Scopus)
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MicroRNAs are small double-stranded RNAs, which negatively regulate gene expression and have been shown to have key roles in both chondrocyte development and cartilage homeostasis with age. Deletion of all microRNAs in chondrocytes leads to skeletal growth defects in mice, whilst deletion of specific mi croRNAs, e.g. miR-140, leads to premature articular cartilage degradation and increased susceptibility to posttraumatic osteoarthritis.

Studies comparing microRNA expression in normal human articular cartilage compared to osteoarthritic cartilage show differential expression, but varying sample groups make interpretation difficult. MicroRNAs have been proposed as circulating biomarkers of osteoarthritis, but again, this differs amongst patient cohorts. Many micro- RNAs have been shown to have roles in chondrocyte phenotype via signaling pathways, apoptosis, autophagy and senescence.

Modulating microRNAs in the joint has been shown to reduce osteoarthritis in animal models and translating this to man as a novel therapeutic strategy will be key.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-47
Number of pages8
JournalClinical and Experimental Rheumatology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2019

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