Interplay between microRNAs and the epigenetic machinery: an intricate network.
microRNAs take their place into the epigenetic world revealing a complicated network of reciprocal interconnections: not only they are able to control gene expression at a post-transcriptional level, thus representing a new important class of regulatory molecules, but they are also directly connected to the epigenetic machinery through a regulatory loop. Indeed, if epigenetic modifications, such as DNA methylation or histone acetylation, have been demonstrated to affect microRNA expression, and to be potentially responsible for the aberrant miRNA regulation observed in cancer, the other side of the coin is represented by the capacity of microRNAs to control the epigenetic machinery directly targeting its enzymatic components. This review will analyze and describe the regulatory loop interconnecting microRNAs and epigenetics, describing either how epigenetics can affect the miRNome, as well as how epi-miRNAs can control the epigenome, particularly focusing on the alterations observed in human cancer.
- Croce CM
- Iorio MV
- Piovan C