Study: MicroRNA Involved in Lung Fibrosis

PITTSBURGH, May 3 (UPI) — U.S. medical investigators say they’ve determined MicroRNAs appear to play a significant role in the development of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

Researchers led by Associate Professor Naftali Kaminski at the the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine said MicroRNAs are short strands of genetic material involved in regulating the expression, or activity, of genes. They are a new family of RNA molecules thought to be factors in embryonic development, multiple cancers and chronic heart failure.

“Our research now indicates that microRNA changes also contribute to IPF,” Kaminski said. “We have identified an entirely new molecular mechanism for the disease, which gives us new ideas about how to treat it.”

The study that included scientists in Greece, Mexico and Germany appears in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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