Special Issue "MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease"

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A special issue of Cells (ISSN 2073-4409).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 May 2014)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Stephen Y. Chan (Website)

Divisions of Cardiovascular Medicine and Network Medicine, Department of Medicine Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Room 630N Boston, MA 02115, USA
Phone: 6175254844
Interests: microRNA; network biology; pulmonary hypertension; hypoxia; mitochondrial metabolism; vascular biology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Since the initial discovery of microRNAs’ specific biological functions in the late 1990s, our understanding of these unique RNA molecules in both health and disease has grown exponentially. The impact of miRNA biology continues to be wide-reaching and often surprising—particularly in the field of cardiovascular physiology. Beyond the canonical functions of individual microRNAs that affect their isolated gene targets and downstream pathophenotypes, developing concepts in cardiovascular biology include the study of paracrine or endocrine functions of extracellular forms of microRNAs, an increasing appreciation for the complexity of regulation of microRNAs via other non-coding RNA molecules, and a growing interest in understanding the "network-based" pleiotropy of microRNAs through a combination of computational and experimental methods.

This special issue will provide an open access opportunity for publishing research work and review articles related to cardiovascular biology and disease, and to offer comprehensive new insights into the current and future directions of this exciting and important research field.

Dr. Stephen Y. Chan
Guest Editor

Submission

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Cells is an international peer-reviewed Open Access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 500 CHF (Swiss Francs). English correction and/or formatting fees of 250 CHF (Swiss Francs) will be charged in certain cases for those articles accepted for publication that require extensive additional formatting and/or English corrections.


Keywords

  • microRNA
  • cardiovascular biology and disease
  • network biology
  • circulating microRNA
  • myocardium
  • vascular biology

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Review

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Open AccessReview Regulation of Cardiac Cell Fate by microRNAs: Implications for Heart Regeneration
Cells 2014, 3(4), 996-1026; doi:10.3390/cells3040996
Received: 22 July 2014 / Revised: 29 September 2014 / Accepted: 10 October 2014 / Published: 29 October 2014
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (4735 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
microRNAs are post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression that have been shown to be central players in the establishment of cellular programs, often acting as switches that control the choice between proliferation and differentiation during development and in adult tissues. The heart develops [...] Read more.
microRNAs are post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression that have been shown to be central players in the establishment of cellular programs, often acting as switches that control the choice between proliferation and differentiation during development and in adult tissues. The heart develops from two small patches of cells in the mesoderm, the heart fields, which originate the different cardiac cell types, including cardiomyocytes, vascular smooth muscle and endothelial cells. These progenitors proliferate and differentiate to establish a highly connected three-dimensional structure, involving a robust succession of gene expression programs strongly influenced by microRNAs. Although the mammalian heart has conventionally been viewed as a post-mitotic organ, cardiac cells have recently been shown to display some regenerative potential, which is nonetheless insufficient to regenerate heart lesions, in contrast with other vertebrates like the zebrafish. Both the proliferation of adult cardiac stem cells and the ability of cardiomyocytes to re-enter the cell cycle have been proposed to sustain these regenerative processes. Here we review the role of microRNAs in the control of stem cell and cardiomyocyte dependent cardiac regeneration processes, and discuss potential applications for the treatment of cardiac injury. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview MicroRNAs Regulate Vascular Medial Calcification
Cells 2014, 3(4), 963-980; doi:10.3390/cells3040963
Received: 1 September 2014 / Revised: 24 September 2014 / Accepted: 25 September 2014 / Published: 14 October 2014
Cited by 9 | PDF Full-text (1744 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Vascular calcification is highly prevalent in patients with coronary artery disease and, when present, is associated with major adverse cardiovascular events, including an increased risk of cardiovascular mortality. The pathogenesis of vascular calcification is complex and is now recognized to recapitulate skeletal [...] Read more.
Vascular calcification is highly prevalent in patients with coronary artery disease and, when present, is associated with major adverse cardiovascular events, including an increased risk of cardiovascular mortality. The pathogenesis of vascular calcification is complex and is now recognized to recapitulate skeletal bone formation. Vascular smooth muscle cells (SMC) play an integral role in this process by undergoing transdifferentiation to osteoblast-like cells, elaborating calcifying matrix vesicles and secreting factors that diminish the activity of osteoclast-like cells with mineral resorbing capacity. Recent advances have identified microRNAs (miRs) as key regulators of this process by directing the complex genetic reprogramming of SMCs and the functional responses of other relevant cell types relevant for vascular calcification. This review will detail SMC and bone biology as it relates to vascular calcification and relate what is known to date regarding the regulatory role of miRs in SMC-mediated vascular calcification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview Roles of Calcium Regulating MicroRNAs in Cardiac Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury
Cells 2014, 3(3), 899-913; doi:10.3390/cells3030899
Received: 26 May 2014 / Revised: 2 September 2014 / Accepted: 3 September 2014 / Published: 11 September 2014
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1407 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cardiac Ca2+ cycling and signaling are closely associated with cardiac function. Changes in cellular Ca2+ homeostasis may lead to aberrant cardiac rhythm and may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of cardiac diseases, due to their exacerbation of heart [...] Read more.
Cardiac Ca2+ cycling and signaling are closely associated with cardiac function. Changes in cellular Ca2+ homeostasis may lead to aberrant cardiac rhythm and may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of cardiac diseases, due to their exacerbation of heart failure. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play a key role in the regulation of gene expression at the post-transcriptional level and participate in regulating diverse biological processes. The emerging evidence indicates that the expression profiles of miRNAs vary among human diseases, including cardiovascular diseases. Cardiac Ca2+-handling and signaling proteins are also regulated by miRNAs. Given the relationship between cardiac Ca2+ homeostasis and signaling and miRNA, Ca2+-related miRNAs may serve as therapeutic targets during the treatment of heart failure. In this review, we summarize the knowledge currently available regarding the role of Ca2+ in cardiac function, as well as changes in Ca2+ cycling and homeostasis and the handling of these processes by miRNAs during cardiac ischemia-reperfusion injury. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview Non-Coding RNAs Including miRNAs and lncRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease
Cells 2014, 3(3), 883-898; doi:10.3390/cells3030883
Received: 10 July 2014 / Revised: 15 August 2014 / Accepted: 15 August 2014 / Published: 22 August 2014
Cited by 14 | PDF Full-text (694 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
It has been recognized for decades that proteins, which are encoded by our genome and produced via transcription and translation steps, are building blocks that play vital roles in almost all biological processes. Mutations identified in many protein-coding genes are linked to [...] Read more.
It has been recognized for decades that proteins, which are encoded by our genome and produced via transcription and translation steps, are building blocks that play vital roles in almost all biological processes. Mutations identified in many protein-coding genes are linked to various human diseases. However, this “protein-centered” dogma has been challenged in recent years with the discovery that the majority of our genome is “non-coding” yet transcribed. Non-coding RNA has become the focus of “next generation” biology. Here, we review the emerging field of non-coding RNAs, including microRNAs (miRNAs) and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), and their role in cardiovascular function and disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview MicroRNAs in the Stressed Heart: Sorting the Signal from the Noise
Cells 2014, 3(3), 778-801; doi:10.3390/cells3030778
Received: 12 June 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 23 July 2014 / Published: 5 August 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (750 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The short noncoding RNAs, known as microRNAs, are of undisputed importance in cellular signaling during differentiation and development, and during adaptive and maladaptive responses of adult tissues, including those that comprise the heart. Cardiac microRNAs are regulated by hemodynamic overload resulting from [...] Read more.
The short noncoding RNAs, known as microRNAs, are of undisputed importance in cellular signaling during differentiation and development, and during adaptive and maladaptive responses of adult tissues, including those that comprise the heart. Cardiac microRNAs are regulated by hemodynamic overload resulting from exercise or hypertension, in the response of surviving myocardium to myocardial infarction, and in response to environmental or systemic disruptions to homeostasis, such as those arising from diabetes. A large body of work has explored microRNA responses in both physiological and pathological contexts but there is still much to learn about their integrated actions on individual mRNAs and signaling pathways. This review will highlight key studies of microRNA regulation in cardiac stress and suggest possible approaches for more precise identification of microRNA targets, with a view to exploiting the resulting data for therapeutic purposes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview microRNAs and Cardiac Cell Fate
Cells 2014, 3(3), 802-823; doi:10.3390/cells3030802
Received: 30 May 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 17 July 2014 / Published: 5 August 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (863 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The role of small, non-coding microRNAs (miRNAs) has recently emerged as fundamental in the regulation of the physiology of the cardiovascular system. Several specific miRNAs were found to be expressed in embryonic, postnatal, and adult cardiac tissues. In the present review, we [...] Read more.
The role of small, non-coding microRNAs (miRNAs) has recently emerged as fundamental in the regulation of the physiology of the cardiovascular system. Several specific miRNAs were found to be expressed in embryonic, postnatal, and adult cardiac tissues. In the present review, we will provide an overview about their role in controlling the different pathways regulating cell identity and fate determination. In particular, we will focus on the involvement of miRNAs in pluripotency determination and reprogramming, and specifically on cardiac lineage commitment and cell direct transdifferentiation into cardiomyocytes. The identification of cardiac-specific miRNAs and their targets provide new promising insights into the mechanisms that regulate cardiac development, function and dysfunction. Furthermore, due to their contribution in reprogramming, they could offer new opportunities for developing safe and efficient cell-based therapies for cardiovascular disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview MiRiad Roles for MicroRNAs in Cardiac Development and Regeneration
Cells 2014, 3(3), 724-750; doi:10.3390/cells3030724
Received: 29 May 2014 / Revised: 25 June 2014 / Accepted: 8 July 2014 / Published: 22 July 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1046 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cardiac development is an exquisitely regulated process that is sensitive to perturbations in transcriptional activity and gene dosage. Accordingly, congenital heart abnormalities are prevalent worldwide, and are estimated to occur in approximately 1% of live births. Recently, small non-coding RNAs, known as [...] Read more.
Cardiac development is an exquisitely regulated process that is sensitive to perturbations in transcriptional activity and gene dosage. Accordingly, congenital heart abnormalities are prevalent worldwide, and are estimated to occur in approximately 1% of live births. Recently, small non-coding RNAs, known as microRNAs, have emerged as critical components of the cardiogenic regulatory network, and have been shown to play numerous roles in the growth, differentiation, and morphogenesis of the developing heart. Moreover, the importance of miRNA function in cardiac development has facilitated the identification of prospective therapeutic targets for patients with congenital and acquired cardiac diseases. Here, we discuss findings attesting to the critical role of miRNAs in cardiogenesis and cardiac regeneration, and present evidence regarding the therapeutic potential of miRNAs for cardiovascular diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)
Open AccessReview MicroRNAs Control Macrophage Formation and Activation: The Inflammatory Link between Obesity and Cardiovascular Diseases
Cells 2014, 3(3), 702-712; doi:10.3390/cells3030702
Received: 29 May 2014 / Revised: 27 June 2014 / Accepted: 1 July 2014 / Published: 10 July 2014
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (301 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Activation and recruitment of resident macrophages in tissues in response to physiological stress are crucial regulatory processes in promoting the development of obesity-associated metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases. Recent studies have provided compelling evidence that microRNAs play important roles in modulating monocyte [...] Read more.
Activation and recruitment of resident macrophages in tissues in response to physiological stress are crucial regulatory processes in promoting the development of obesity-associated metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases. Recent studies have provided compelling evidence that microRNAs play important roles in modulating monocyte formation, macrophage maturation, infiltration into tissues and activation. Macrophage-dependent systemic physiological and tissue-specific responses also involve cell-cell interactions between macrophages and host tissue niche cell components, including other tissue-resident immune cell lineages, adipocytes, vascular smooth muscle and others. In this review, we highlight the roles of microRNAs in regulating the development and function of macrophages in the context of obesity, which could provide insights into the pathogenesis of obesity-related metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)

Other

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Open AccessBrief Report MicroRNA-421 Dysregulation is Associated with Tetralogy of Fallot
Cells 2014, 3(3), 713-723; doi:10.3390/cells3030713
Received: 21 May 2014 / Revised: 2 July 2014 / Accepted: 3 July 2014 / Published: 11 July 2014
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (400 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The importance of microRNAs for maintaining stability in the developing vertebrate heart has recently become apparent. In addition, there is a growing appreciation for the significance of microRNAs in developmental pathology, including the formation of congenital heart defects. We examined the expression [...] Read more.
The importance of microRNAs for maintaining stability in the developing vertebrate heart has recently become apparent. In addition, there is a growing appreciation for the significance of microRNAs in developmental pathology, including the formation of congenital heart defects. We examined the expression of microRNAs in right ventricular (RV) myocardium from infants with idiopathic tetralogy of Fallot (TOF, without a 22q11.2 deletion), and found 61 microRNAs to be significantly changed in expression in myocardium from children with TOF compared to normally developing comparison subjects (O’Brien et al. 2012). Predicted targets of microRNAs with altered expression were enriched for gene networks that regulate cardiac development. We previously derived a list of 229 genes known to be critical to heart development, and found 44 had significantly changed expression in TOF myocardium relative to normally developing myocardium. These 44 genes had significant negative correlations with 33 microRNAs, each of which also had significantly changed expression. Here, we focus on miR-421, as it is significantly upregulated in RV tissue from infants with TOF; is predicted to interact with multiple members of cardiovascular regulatory pathways; and has been shown to regulate cell proliferation. We knocked down, and over expressed miR-421 in primary cells derived from the RV of infants with TOF, and infants with normally developing hearts, respectively. We found a significant inverse correlation between the expression of miR-421 and SOX4, a key regulator of the Notch pathway, which has been shown to be important for the cardiac outflow track. These findings suggest that the dysregulation of miR-421 warrants further investigation as a potential contributor to tetralogy of Fallot. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue MicroRNAs in Cardiovascular Biology and Disease)

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