Emergence of exosomal miRNAs as a diagnostic biomarker for Alzheimer’s disease

exosome rna

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common progressive degenerative disorder, and is characterized by memory loss and cognitive decline. It is a complex disorder with both environmental and genetic components. Current diagnosis of AD is based primarily on the analysis of the patient’s cognitive function using imaging techniques and the biochemical analyses of bodily fluids. Efforts have been made to develop not only an effective therapeutic, but also a diagnostic capable of identifying AD before the onset of irreversible neurological damage. The molecular content of exosomes is a fingerprint of the releasing cell type and its status. A significant body of literature has demonstrated that molecular constituents of exosomes, especially exosomal proteins and microRNAs (miRNAs), hold great promise as novel biomarkers for clinical diagnosis. In addition, expression profiling of miRNAs found in nanovesicles has revealed diagnostic potential in neurodegenerative diseases. Currently, exosomal miRNAs within biological fluids are known as good disease-related markers, and have emerged as a powerful tool for solving many difficulties in both the diagnosis and treatment of AD patients.

Van Giau V, An SS. (2016) Emergence of exosomal miRNAs as a diagnostic biomarker for Alzheimer’s disease. J Neurol Sci 360:141-52. [abstract]

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