January 6, 2023

MicroRNAs linked to lipid damage

VUMC researchers have linked microRNAs with systemic lipid peroxidation, a discovery that could point to new therapeutic targets for a variety of diseases.

Inflammation can arise from oxidative stress, leading to a variety of diseases. This stress can result in injury to lipids, called lipid peroxidation.  

Dysregulation of microRNAs (miRNAs), which regulate gene expression by degrading and/or suppressing multiple mRNA molecules, is associated with many pathological processes, including oxidative stress. 

Gong Yang, MD, MPH, and colleagues utilized the Shanghai Women’s Health Study cohort to determine the relationships between miRNA profiles and urinary markers of lipid peroxidation: a class of isoprostanes called F2-IsoPs and their metabolized product, F2-IsoP-M. 

In this study of healthy elderly and middle-aged women, the researchers discovered that higher F2-IsoP-M levels were associated with higher body mass index and upregulation or downregulation of distinct miRNAs that are associated with common lipid peroxidation pathways.  

This study, reported in the journal Redox Biology, provides the first human evidence linking miRNA expression with systemic lipid peroxidation and related metabolism in women, and may help uncover targets for preventive and therapeutic interventions.

Co-authors from Vanderbilt University Medical Center included Yingya Zhao, PhD, Marina Nogueira, PhD, Ginger Milne, PhD, Xingyi Guo, PhD, Hui Cai, MD, PhD, Qiuyin Cai, MD, PhD, Qingxia Chen, PhD, and Xiao-Ou Shu, MD, PhD, MPH. 

This work was funded by National Institutes of Health grants CA237895, CA122364, CA227133, and CA182910, and by the Vanderbilt Diabetes Research and Training Center (DK020593).