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Pharm Res. 2010 Jun;27(6):1014-26. doi: 10.1007/s11095-010-0086-x. Epub 2010 Mar 11.

Diet, microRNAs and prostate cancer.

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Department of Urology, Veterans Affairs Medical Center and University of California San Francisco, 4150 Clement Street, San Francisco, CA 94121, USA.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) constitute an evolutionarily conserved class of small non-coding RNAs that are endogenously expressed with crucial functions in fundamental cellular processes such as cell cycle, apoptosis and differentiation. Disturbance of miRNA expression and function leads to deregulation of basic cellular processes leading to tumorigenesis. A growing body of experimental evidence suggests that human tumors have deregulated expression of microRNAs, which have been proposed as novel oncogenes or tumor suppressors. Recent studies have shown that microRNA expression patterns serve as phenotypic signatures of different cancers and could be used as diagnostic, prognostic and therapeutic tools. A few studies have analyzed global microRNA expression profiles or the functional role of microRNAs in prostate cancer. Here we have reviewed the role of microRNAs in prostate carcinogenesis by summarizing the findings from such studies. In addition, recent evidence indicates that dietary factors play an important role in the process of carcinogenesis through modulation of miRNA expression, though such studies are lacking in regards to prostate cancer. It has been proposed that dietary modulation of miRNA expression may contribute to the cancer-protective effects of dietary components. In this review, we have summarized findings from studies on the effect of dietary agents on miRNA expression and function.

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