MicroRNAs in intestinal barrier function, inflammatory bowel disease and related cancers — their effects and therapeutic potentials
The initiation and development or inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and associated colorectal cancers, have been linked to inflammation. MicroRNAs are non-coding regulators of gene expression that have gained great attention due to their capability to regulate the expression of a number of target transcripts. It is now generally admitted that microRNAs are instrumental in gut pathologies, in particular through their targeting of transcripts encoding proteins of the intestinal barrier (IB) and their regulators. Intense research is conducted to identify microRNAs susceptible to be used as biomarkers and to design new therapeutic approaches based upon using synthetic microRNA mimics and inhibitors as well as finding new drugs capable to restore or modify microRNA expression in the context of gut pathologies.