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Mol Neurobiol. 2013 Feb;47(1):131-44. doi: 10.1007/s12035-012-8349-7. Epub 2012 Oct 2.

A systematic review of microRNA in glioblastoma multiforme: micro-modulators in the mesenchymal mode of migration and invasion.

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Department of Biomedicine, Institute for Medicine and Health Technology, Aalborg University, Fredrik Bajers Vej 3B, 9220, Aalborg Øst, Denmark.


Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is an incurable form of brain cancer with a very poor prognosis. Because of its highly invasive nature, it is impossible to remove all tumor cells during surgical resection, making relapse inevitable. Further research into the regulatory mechanism underpinning GBM pathogenesis is therefore warranted, and over the past decade, there has been an increased focus on the functional role of microRNA (miRNA). This systematic review aims to present a comprehensive overview of all the available literature on the expression profiles and function of miRNA in GBM. Here, we have reviewed 163 papers and identified 253 upregulated, 95 downregulated, and 17 disputed miRNAs with respect to expression levels; 85 % of these miRNAs have not yet been functionally characterized. A focus in this study has been 26 interesting miRNAs involved in the mesenchymal mode of migration and invasion, demonstrating the importance of miRNAs in the context of the cellular niche. Both oncogenic and tumor-suppressive miRNAs were found to affect target genes involved in cell migration, cytoskeletal rearrangement, invasiveness, and angiogenesis. Clearly, the distinct functional properties of these miRNAs need further investigation and might hold a great potential in future molecular therapies targeting GBM.

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