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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(12), 2628; doi:10.3390/ijms18122628

Adverse Intrauterine Environment and Cardiac miRNA Expression

Early Origins of Adult Health Research Group; School of Pharmacy & Medical Sciences, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA 5001, Australia
CSIRO Agriculture, 306 Carmody Rd, St. Lucia, QLD 4067, Australia
Mechanisms in Cell Biology and Disease Research Group School of Pharmacy & Medical Sciences, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA 5001, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 October 2017 / Revised: 10 November 2017 / Accepted: 28 November 2017 / Published: 6 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Adaptation to Chronic Hypoxia: The Last Word Has Not yet Been Said)
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Placental insufficiency, high altitude pregnancies, maternal obesity/diabetes, maternal undernutrition and stress can result in a poor setting for growth of the developing fetus. These adverse intrauterine environments result in physiological changes to the developing heart that impact how the heart will function in postnatal life. The intrauterine environment plays a key role in the complex interplay between genes and the epigenetic mechanisms that regulate their expression. In this review we describe how an adverse intrauterine environment can influence the expression of miRNAs (a sub-set of non-coding RNAs) and how these changes may impact heart development. Potential consequences of altered miRNA expression in the fetal heart include; Hypoxia inducible factor (HIF) activation, dysregulation of angiogenesis, mitochondrial abnormalities and altered glucose and fatty acid transport/metabolism. It is important to understand how miRNAs are altered in these adverse environments to identify key pathways that can be targeted using miRNA mimics or inhibitors to condition an improved developmental response. View Full-Text
Keywords: miRNA; epigenetics; heart disease; fetal development miRNA; epigenetics; heart disease; fetal development

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lock, M.C.; Botting, K.J.; Tellam, R.L.; Brooks, D.; Morrison, J.L. Adverse Intrauterine Environment and Cardiac miRNA Expression. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 2628.

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