microRNAs and Neurodegenerative Diseases.Adv Exp Med Biol. 2015; 888:85-105.AE
microRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNA molecules that through imperfect base-pairing with complementary sequences of target mRNA molecules, typically cleave target mRNA, causing subsequent degradation or translation inhibition. Although an increasing number of studies have identified misregulated miRNAs in the neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which suggests that alterations in the miRNA regulatory pathway could contribute to disease pathogenesis, the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathological implications of misregulated miRNA expression and the regulation of the key genes involved in NDDs remain largely unknown. In this chapter, we provide evidence of the function and regulation of miRNAs and their association with the neurological events in NDDs. This will help improve our understanding of how miRNAs govern the biological functions of key pathogenic genes in these diseases, which potentially regulate several pathways involved in the progression of neurodegeneration. Additionally, given the growing interest in the therapeutic potential of miRNAs, we discuss current clinical challenges to developing miRNA-based therapeutics for NDDs.