In the last few years, microRNA-mediated regulation has been shown to be important in viral infections. In fact, viral microRNAs can alter cell physiology and act on the immune system; moreover, cellular microRNAs can regulate the virus cycle, influencing positively or negatively viral replication. Accordingly, microRNAs can represent diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers of infectious processes and a promising approach for designing targeted therapies. In the past 18 months, the COVID-19 infection from SARS-CoV-2 has engaged many researchers in the search for diagnostic and prognostic markers and the development of therapies. Although some research suggests that the SARS-CoV-2 genome can produce microRNAs and that host microRNAs may be involved in the cellular response to the virus, to date, not enough evidence has been provided. In this paper, using a focused bioinformatic approach exploring the SARS-CoV-2 genome, we propose that SARS-CoV-2 is able to produce microRNAs sharing a strong sequence homology with the human ones and also that human microRNAs may target viral RNA regulating the virus life cycle inside human cells. Interestingly, all viral miRNA sequences and some human miRNA target sites are conserved in more recent SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs). Even if experimental evidence will be needed, in silico analysis represents a valuable source of information useful to understand the sophisticated molecular mechanisms of disease and to sustain biomedical applications.

Microrna-mediated regulation of the virus cycle and pathogenesis in the sars-cov-2 disease

Battaglia R.
Primo
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Caponnetto A.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Ferrara C.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Stella M.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Barbagallo C.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Barbagallo D.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Ragusa M.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Purrello M.
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Di Pietro C.
Ultimo
Membro del Collaboration Group
2021-01-01

Abstract

In the last few years, microRNA-mediated regulation has been shown to be important in viral infections. In fact, viral microRNAs can alter cell physiology and act on the immune system; moreover, cellular microRNAs can regulate the virus cycle, influencing positively or negatively viral replication. Accordingly, microRNAs can represent diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers of infectious processes and a promising approach for designing targeted therapies. In the past 18 months, the COVID-19 infection from SARS-CoV-2 has engaged many researchers in the search for diagnostic and prognostic markers and the development of therapies. Although some research suggests that the SARS-CoV-2 genome can produce microRNAs and that host microRNAs may be involved in the cellular response to the virus, to date, not enough evidence has been provided. In this paper, using a focused bioinformatic approach exploring the SARS-CoV-2 genome, we propose that SARS-CoV-2 is able to produce microRNAs sharing a strong sequence homology with the human ones and also that human microRNAs may target viral RNA regulating the virus life cycle inside human cells. Interestingly, all viral miRNA sequences and some human miRNA target sites are conserved in more recent SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs). Even if experimental evidence will be needed, in silico analysis represents a valuable source of information useful to understand the sophisticated molecular mechanisms of disease and to sustain biomedical applications.
2021
COVID-19
Human microRNAs
SARS-CoV-2
Variants of concern (VOCs)
Viral microRNAs
COVID-19
Computational Biology
DNA Viruses
Gene Expression
Gene Expression Regulation, Viral
Genome, Viral
Host-Pathogen Interactions
MicroRNAs
RNA, Viral
SARS-CoV-2
Sequence Homology
Virus Replication
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/523398
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