Function and regulation of microRNA-31 in development and disease

Mol Reprod Dev. 2016 Aug;83(8):654-74. doi: 10.1002/mrd.22678. Epub 2016 Aug 2.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNAs that orchestrate numerous cellular processes both under normal physiological conditions as well as in diseases. This review summarizes the functional roles and transcriptional regulation of the highly evolutionarily conserved miRNA, microRNA-31 (miR-31). miR-31 is an important regulator of embryonic implantation, development, bone and muscle homeostasis, and immune system function. Its own regulation is disrupted during the onset and progression of cancer and autoimmune disorders such as psoriasis and systemic lupus erythematosus. Limited studies suggest that miR-31 is transcriptionally regulated by epigenetics, such as methylation and acetylation, as well as by a number of transcription factors. Overall, miR-31 regulates diverse cellular and developmental processes by targeting genes involved in cell proliferation, apoptosis, cell differentiation, and cell motility. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 83: 654-674, 2016 © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Keywords: bone formation; cancer; embryogenesis; miRNAs; regulation of miRNAs.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / genetics
  • Autoimmune Diseases / genetics
  • Autoimmune Diseases / metabolism*
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Cell Movement / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation / genetics
  • Embryo Implantation*
  • Epigenesis, Genetic*
  • Humans
  • MicroRNAs / genetics
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism*
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • RNA, Neoplasm / genetics
  • RNA, Neoplasm / metabolism*


  • MIRN31 microRNA, human
  • MicroRNAs
  • RNA, Neoplasm