Control of cell proliferation pathways by microRNAs

Cell Cycle. 2008 Oct;7(20):3143-8. doi: 10.4161/cc.7.20.6833. Epub 2008 Oct 20.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that regulate a large variety of cellular processes including differentiation, apoptosis and proliferation. Several miRNAs display defective expression patterns in human tumors with the consequent alteration of target oncogene or tumor suppressor genes. Many of these miRNAs modulate the major proliferation pathways through direct interaction with critical regulators such as RAS, PI3K/PTEN or ABL, as well as members of the retinoblastoma pathway, Cyclin-CDK complexes or cell cycle inhibitors of the INK4 or Cip/Kip families. A complex interplay between miRNAs and MYC or E2F family members also exists to modulate cell cycle-dependent transcription during normal or tumoral proliferation. The ability of miRNAs to modulate these proliferation pathways may have relevant implications not only in physiological or developmental processes but also in tumor progression or cancer therapy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Cycle / physiology
  • Cell Proliferation*
  • Humans
  • MicroRNAs / genetics
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism*
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism


  • MicroRNAs
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • rho GTP-Binding Proteins