MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNAs regulating mRNA translation. They play a crucial role in regulating homeostasis in neurons, especially in regulating local and stimulation dependent protein synthesis. Since activity-mediated protein synthesis in neurons is critical for memory and cognition, microRNAs have become key players in modulating these processes. Dementia is a broad term used for symptoms involving decline of memory and cognition. Several studies have implicated the dysregulation of microRNAs in many brain diseases like neurodegenerative diseases, neurodevelopmental disorders, brain injuries and dementia. In this review, we give an overview of microRNA-mediated regulation of proteins and cellular processes affected in dementia pathology, hence illustrating the importance of microRNAs in normal functioning. We also focus on a relatively less explored area in dementia pathology-the importance of activity-mediated protein synthesis at the synapse and the role of microRNAs in modulating this. Overall, this review will be helpful in looking at the significance of microRNAs in dementia from the perspective of defective regulation of protein synthesis and synaptic dysfunction.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; fronto-temporal dementia; microRNA processing; synaptic dysfunction; translation regulation.
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