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Basic Res Cardiol. 2011 Jan;106(1):5-11. doi: 10.1007/s00395-010-0139-7. Epub 2010 Dec 24.

Control of cardiovascular differentiation by microRNAs.

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Institute for Cardiovascular Regeneration, Center of Molecular Medicine, University of Frankfurt, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, Frankfurt, Germany.


MicroRNAs (miRs) are small non-coding RNAs, which control gene expression either by inducing mRNA degradation or by blocking translation, and play a crucial role in tissue homeostasis. In the cardiovascular system, miRs were shown to control cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis and apoptosis, angiogenesis, and vessel remodeling. In addition, miRs regulate stem cell maintenance and some miRs induced cell fate decisions. This review summarizes the current insights into the control of stem cells and lineage commitment by miRs focusing specifically to the regulation of endothelial, smooth muscle, and cardiac lineage.

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