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International Journal of Endocrinology
Volume 2018, Article ID 6872635, 11 pages
Research Article

Circulating MicroRNAs in Elderly Type 2 Diabetic Patients

1Department of Experimental Medicine, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy
2Department of Molecular Medicine, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy
3Department of Biomedicine and Prevention, Tor Vergata University, Rome, Italy
4Fondazione Umberto Di Mario ONLUS, Rome, Italy
5Hypertension and Nephrology Unit, Department of Systems Medicine, Tor Vergata University, Rome, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Elisabetta Ferretti; ti.1amorinu@itterref.attebasile

Received 20 October 2017; Revised 25 January 2018; Accepted 18 February 2018; Published 10 April 2018

Academic Editor: Claudiane Guay

Copyright © 2018 Giuseppina Catanzaro 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.


The circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) associated with type 2 diabetes (T2D) in elderly patients are still being defined. To identify novel miRNA biomarker candidates for monitoring responses to sitagliptin in such patients, we prospectively studied 40 T2D patients (age > 65) with HbA1c levels of 7.5–9.0% on metformin. After collection of baseline blood samples (t0), the dipeptidyl peptidase-IV (DPP-IV) inhibitor (DPP-IVi) sitagliptin was added to the metformin regimen, and patients were followed for 15 months. Patients with HbA1c < 7.5% or HbA1c reduction > 0.5% after 3 and 15 months of therapy were classified as “responders” (group R, ); all others were classified as “nonresponders” (group NR, ). Circulating miRNA profiling was performed on plasma collected in each group before and after 15 months of therapy (t0 and t15). Intra- and intergroup comparison of miRNA profiles pinpointed three miRNAs that correlated with responses to sitagliptin: miR-378, which is a candidate biomarker of resistance to this DPP-IVi, and miR-126-3p and miR-223, which are associated with positive responses to the drug. The translational implications are as immediate as evident, with the possibility to develop noninvasive diagnostic tools to predict drug response and development of chronic complications.