MicroRNA: a new frontier in kidney and blood pressure research

Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2009 Sep;297(3):F553-8. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00045.2009. Epub 2009 Apr 1.


MicroRNA (miRNA) has emerged rapidly as a major new direction in many fields of research including kidney and blood pressure research. A mammalian genome encodes several hundred miRNAs. These miRNAs potentially regulate the expression of thousands of proteins. miRNA expression profiles differ substantially between the kidney and other organs as well as between kidney regions. miRNAs may be functionally important in models of diabetic nephropathy, podocyte development, and polycystic disease. miRNAs may be involved in the regulation of arterial blood pressure, including possible involvement in genetic elements of hypertension. Studies of miRNAs could generate diagnostic biomarkers for kidney disease and new mechanistic insights into the complex regulatory networks underlying kidney disease and hypertension. Further progress in the understanding of miRNA biogenesis and action and technical improvements for target identification and miRNA manipulation will be important for studying miRNAs in renal function and blood pressure regulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Pressure / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Genetic Markers
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / genetics*
  • Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Kidney Diseases / genetics*
  • Kidney Diseases / physiopathology
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism*


  • Genetic Markers
  • MicroRNAs