Associated TP13: Identification and validation of aberrant miRNA expression patterns in the context of autoimmune diseases in humans

Micro(mi)RNAs play crucial roles in developmental processes and maintenance of cellular as well as systemic homeostasis. On the other hand, aberrant expression and/or function of miRNAs may cause several pathological states like various types of cancer as well as metabolic, neurodegenerative, infectious, and chronic inflammatory diseases. Recently, new data encourage the guess aberrant miRNA expression is likewise involved in progression or manifestation of autoimmune diseases. Deregulated miRNA expression has been correlated with the pathogenesis of systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. Moreover, there is increasing support miRNAs might be involved the pathogenesis of psoriasis, atopic eczema, autoimmune encephalomyelitis and lupus nephritis. The proposed project aims at a functional validation and subsequent characterization of microarray predicted RNA-based regulatory networks. It is anticipated the project will lead to the detection of new aberrant miRNA expression patters which could shad light on the underlying pathomechanisms of autoimmune diseases and in the long run pave the avenue for the identification and validation of novel targets for treatment.