The investigation of circulating microRNAs associated with lipid metabolism in childhood obesity

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Childhood obesity is an increasing health challenge related to increased risk of chronic diseases. microRNAs (miRNAs) are noncoding short RNA molecules regulating multiple biological processes linked to obesity.


We aimed at evaluating the association between circulating miRNA levels and lipid metabolism in obese and non-obese children and adolescents.


By constituting study group, 45 obese children and adolescents were recruited. To perform comparisons with study group, 41 lean controls were matched for age and sex. Using real-time quantitative PCR analysis, circulating miRNAs were evaluated in both groups.


Circulating miR-335 (P < 0.001), miR-143 (P = 0.001) and miR-758 (P = 0.006) in obese children were significantly lower than those of controls. However, circulating miR-27 (P = 0.032), miR-378 (P < 0.001) and miR-370 (P = 0.045) in obese children were significantly higher, compared with those of controls. In addition, circulating miR-33 in obese children was higher than those of controls, but no significant difference was present (P = 0.687).


Our findings showed that a significant association is present between circulating miR-370, miR-33, miR-378, miR-27, miR-335, miR-143 and miR-758 values, and childhood obesity. Low levels of miR-335, miR-143 and miR-758, and high levels of miR-27, miR-378, miR-33 and miR-370 may have been responsible for elevated triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C) levels, and low level of high-density lipoprotein (HDL-C) in obese subjects. Therefore, miRNAs may be a good novel biomarker for childhood obesity.

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