Atrial fibrillation (AF), the most common type of cardiac arrhythmia, is thought to be regulated by changes in microRNA (miRNA) expression. However, the evidence for this is inconsistent. The high stability and expression of circulating exosomal miRNAs may allow their use as candidate biomarkers. For the discovery phase, exosomes were isolated from the serum of patients with supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) as the controls (n = 5) and with paroxysmal AF (n = 4) and persistent AF (n = 5) for microarray analysis of miRNAs. Forty-five miRNAs were expressed significantly higher (>1.5-fold) in patients with persistent AF, but not in patients with paroxysmal AF, relative to the levels in patients with SVT control. Notably, expression of 5 miRNAs (miRNA-103a, -107, -320d, -486, and let-7b) was elevated by more than 4.5-fold in patients with persistent AF. For the validation phase, miRNAs were analyzed using quantitative RT-PCR analysis in exosomes from the serum of patients with SVT control (n = 20) and patients with persistent AF (n = 40). These miRNAs and their target genes were involved in atrial function and structure, oxidative stress, and fibrosis pathways. These findings suggest that serum exosomal miRNAs might be used as novel biomarkers to reflect the progression of AF.—Mun, D., Kim, H., Kang, J.-Y., Park, H., Park, H., Lee, S.-H., Yun, N., Joung, B. Expression of miRNAs in circulating exosomes derived from patients with persistent atrial fibrillation. FASEB J. 33, 5979–5989 (2019). www.fasebj.org.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology