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Cells 2018, 7(11), 219;

MicroRNAs as Biomarkers in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Department of Medical, Surgical and Neurological Sciences, University of Siena, 53100 Siena, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 October 2018 / Revised: 15 November 2018 / Accepted: 17 November 2018 / Published: 20 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regulatory microRNA)
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Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is an incurable and fatal disorder characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons in the cerebral cortex, brain stem, and spinal cord. Sporadic ALS form accounts for the majority of patients, but in 1–13.5% of cases the disease is inherited. The diagnosis of ALS is mainly based on clinical assessment and electrophysiological examinations with a history of symptom progression and is then made with a significant delay from symptom onset. Thus, the identification of biomarkers specific for ALS could be of a fundamental importance in the clinical practice. An ideal biomarker should display high specificity and sensitivity for discriminating ALS from control subjects and from ALS-mimics and other neurological diseases, and should then monitor disease progression within individual patients. microRNAs (miRNAs) are considered promising biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases, since they are remarkably stable in human body fluids and can reflect physiological and pathological processes relevant for ALS. Here, we review the state of the art of miRNA biomarker identification for ALS in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), blood and muscle tissue; we discuss advantages and disadvantages of different approaches, and underline the limits but also the great potential of this research for future practical applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); biomarker; microRNA; cerebrospinal fluid (CSF); muscle biopsy; circulating miRNAs amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); biomarker; microRNA; cerebrospinal fluid (CSF); muscle biopsy; circulating miRNAs

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Ricci, C.; Marzocchi, C.; Battistini, S. MicroRNAs as Biomarkers in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. Cells 2018, 7, 219.

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