Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is one of the leading causes of cancer related death which could be explained by typically late diagnosis and chemo- radioresistance. The majority of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma develops from three precursor lesions, including intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm. Therefore, an effective screening tool to detect early stages of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma or its precursor lesions is needed. MicroRNAs belong to a class of short non-coding RNAs and act as tumor oncogenes or tumor suppressors. They play an important role in life-cycle of normal cells, as well as cancer cells, supporting their cancerogenous and metastatic potential. Different panels of upregulated and downregulated miRNAs have been associated with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and its precursor lesions. In the present review, we discuss the recent studies focusing on miRNAs in intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm. A summary of the most important miRNAs involved in intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm pathogenesis is provided. Identification of key miRNA networks in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma precursors might provide diagnostic tools for early detection and subsequently extended life expectancy for this disease.
Andrea Palloni, Veronica Mollica, Manuela Ferracin, Giorgio Frega, Ilaria Maggio, Elisa Giovannetti, Chiara Caparello, Guido Biasco, Ingrid Garajová
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