Islet-specific microRNAs in pancreas development, regeneration and diabetes

Indian J Exp Biol. 2011 Jun;49(6):401-8.


Diabetes is a chronic and slowly progressive disease that is presently reaching epidemic proportions in several parts of the world. Multiple aspects including genetic and lifestyle changes have been identified as the key factors leading to the development of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Although molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of diabetes remain unclear, recent discoveries in understanding post-transcriptional gene regulation by microRNAs (miRNAs) has opened a new area of research. MicroRNAs have been implicated as new players in pathogenesis as well as complications of diabetes. MiRNAs have been shown to be necessary not only during embryonic development of insulin-producing cells, transcription of (pro-)insulin gene and insulin secretion, but also in development of insulin resistance and diabetes. The present review summarizes the findings related to understanding the role of miRNAs in endocrine pancreas development, pancreas regeneration, islet function and diabetes.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Diabetes Mellitus / genetics
  • Diabetes Mellitus / pathology
  • Diabetes Mellitus / physiopathology
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / cytology
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / metabolism
  • Islets of Langerhans / growth & development
  • Islets of Langerhans / metabolism*
  • Islets of Langerhans / physiology
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • Regeneration


  • MicroRNAs