A systematic review of miRNAs as biomarkers for chemotherapy-induced cardiotoxicity in breast cancer patients reveals potentially clinically informative panels as well as key challenges in miRNA research

Cardiooncology. 2022 Sep 7;8(1):16. doi: 10.1186/s40959-022-00142-1.


Breast cancer patients are at a particularly high risk of cardiotoxicity from chemotherapy having a detrimental effect on quality-of-life parameters and increasing the risk of mortality. Prognostic biomarkers would allow the management of therapies to mitigate the risks of cardiotoxicity in vulnerable patients and a key potential candidate for such biomarkers are microRNAs (miRNA). miRNAs are post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression which can also be released into the circulatory system and have been associated with the progression of many chronic diseases including many types of cancer. In this review, the evidence for the potential application of miRNAs as biomarkers for chemotherapy-induced cardiotoxicity (CIC) in breast cancer patientsis evaluated and a simple meta-analysis is performed to confirm the replication status of each reported miRNA. Further selection of miRNAs is performed by reviewing the reported associations of each miRNA with other cardiovascular conditions. Based on this research, the most representative panels targeting specific chemotherapy agents and treatment regimens are suggested, that contain several informative miRNAs, including both general markers of cardiac damage as well as those for the specific cancer treatments.

Keywords: Anthracycline; Breast cancer; Cardiotoxicity; Chemotherapy; miRNA; microRNA.

Publication types

  • Review