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Extracellular RNA in aging

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Since the discovery of extracellular RNA (exRNA) in circulation and other bodily fluids, there has been considerable effort to catalog and assess whether exRNAs can be used as markers for health and disease. A variety of exRNA species have been identified including messenger RNA and noncoding RNA such as microRNA (miRNA), small nucleolar RNA, transfer RNA, and long noncoding RNA. Age‐related changes in exRNA abundance have been observed, and it is likely that some of these transcripts play a role in aging. In this review, we summarize the current state of exRNA profiling in various body fluids and discuss age‐related changes in exRNA abundance that have been identified in humans and other model organisms. miRNAs, in particular, are a major focus of current research and we will highlight and discuss the potential role that specific miRNAs might play in age‐related phenotypes and disease. We will also review challenges facing this emerging field and various strategies that can be used for the validation and future use of exRNAs as markers of aging and age‐related disease. WIREs RNA 2017, 8:e1385. doi: 10.1002/wrna.1385 This article is categorized under: Regulatory RNAs/RNAi/Riboswitches > Regulatory RNAs RNA in Disease and Development > RNA in Disease RNA in Disease and Development > RNA in Development
Schematic of location and packaging of extracellular RNA in circulation. MicroRNA (miRNA) maturation from a primary miRNA to a mature miRNA is indicated and its packaging into extracellular vesicles (EVs), cholesterol, or bound to AGO2 for release into the circulation. Potential avenues for release of other noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) and messenger RNAs (mRNAs) into the circulation are indicated, but little is known about this process. The main types of circulating cells in the blood are also indicated.
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Extracellular microRNA (miRNA) changes in humans with age. (a) All miRNAs that were increased in the circulation with age from Table were compared to miRNAs that were decreased in the circulation. Overlapping miRNAs are indicated. (b) KEGG pathway analyses were performed on the miRNAs differed in abundance with age in the different studies. (c) KEGG analyses were performed on the miRNAs that were found to be decreased with age in multiple studies.
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Extracellular microRNA (miRNA) changes in mice with age. (a) Overlapping changes in miRNAs from the indicated studies are shown. (b) KEGG pathway analysis was performed for the miRNAs that were changed with age in the various studies.
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Summary of human bodily fluids containing extracellular RNA. The specific RNA reported and also the body fluid for each extracellular RNA is indicated.
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RNA in Disease and Development > RNA in Disease
RNA in Disease and Development > RNA in Development
Regulatory RNAs/RNAi/Riboswitches > Regulatory RNAs

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