Circulating miRNAs in nontumoral liver diseases

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Abstract

In recent years, there has been increasing interest in finding new biomarkers for diagnosis and prognostication of liver diseases. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules involved in the regulation of gene expression and have been studied in relation to several conditions, including liver disease. Mature miRNAs can reach the bloodstream by passive release or by incorporation into lipoprotein complexes or microvesicles, and have stable and reproducible concentrations among individuals. In this review, we summarize studies involving circulating miRNAs sourced from the serum or plasma of patients with nontumoral liver diseases in attempt to bring insights in the use of miRNAs as biomarkers for diagnosis, as well as for prognosis of such diseases. In addition, we present pre-analytical aspects involving miRNA analysis and strategies for normalization of reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) data related to the studies evaluated.

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