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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016, Article ID 7802521, 10 pages
Review Article

Molecular Background of miRNA Role in Asthma and COPD: An Updated Insight

Department of Immunopathology, Faculty of Medical Science and Postgraduate Training, Medical University of Lodz, Zeligowskiego 7/9 Street, Building 2, Room 122, 90-752 Lodz, Poland

Received 16 February 2016; Revised 29 April 2016; Accepted 15 May 2016

Academic Editor: Andras Bikov

Copyright © 2016 Izabela Szymczak et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Inflammatory airway diseases are a significant health problems requiring new approaches to the existing therapies and addressing fundamental issues. Difficulties in developing effective therapeutic strategies might be caused by lack of understanding of their exact molecular mechanism. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of regulators that already revolutionized the view of gene expression regulation. A cumulating number of investigations show a pivotal role of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or airway remodeling through the regulation of many pathways involved in their pathogenesis. Expression changes of several miRNAs have also been found to play a role in the development and/or improvement in asthma or COPD. Still, relatively little is known about the role of miRNAs in inflammatory disorders. The microRNA profiles may differ depending on the cell type or antigen-presenting cell. Based on the newest literature, this review discusses the current knowledge concerning miRNA contribution and influence on lung inflammation and chosen inflammatory airway diseases: asthma and COPD.