The molecular mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of keloid is largely
unknown. MicroRNA (miRNA) is a class of small regulatory RNA that has emerged as a group of posttranscriptional
gene repressors, participating in diverse pathophysiological processes of skin diseases. We
investigated the expression profiles of miRNAs in the sera of patients to decipher the complicated factors
involved in the development of keloid disease. MiRNA expression profiling in the sera from 9 keloid patients
and 7 normal controls were characterized using a miRNA microarray containing established human mature
and precursor miRNA sequences. Quantitative real-time PCR was performed to confirm the expression of
miRNAs. The putative targets of differentially expressed miRNAs were functionally annotated by
bioinformatics. MiRNA microarray analysis identified 37 differentially expressed miRNAs (17 upregulated and
20 downregulated) in keloid patients, compared to the healthy controls. Functional annotations revealed that
the targets of those differentially expressed miRNAs were enriched in signaling pathways essential for scar
formation and wound healing. The expression profiling of miRNAs is altered in the keloid, providing a clue for
the molecular mechanisms underlying its initiation and progression. MiRNAs may partly contribute to the
etiology of keloids by affecting the critical signaling pathways relevant to keloid pathogenesis.
Keywords: Keloid, microRNA, serum, pathogenesis, scar, etiology.
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