MiR-223-3p is involved in the regulation of a broad range of cellular processes and in many types of pathological processes as cancer, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. MiR-223-3p has been indicated as negative regulator of NLRP3 protein, a key protein of inflammasome. The chronic inflammasome activation, an underlying feature of neurodegenerative disorders, is induced by misfolded protein aggregates, including amyloid-beta and alpha-synuclein, resulting in pro-inflammatory cytokines secretion and propagating of neuroinflammation. The aim of the study was to analyze whether circulatory miR-223-3p could be used as biomarker in neurodegeneration and to clarify its possible relationship with inflammasome activation. miR-223-3p concentration was evaluated in serum of Alzheimer’s (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD) or mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients and healthy controls (HC). Compared to HC, miR-223-3p serum concentration was reduced in MCI and AD, but up-regulated in PD (p < 0.0001), and it decreased progressively from MCI to moderate (p < 0.0001) to severe AD (p = 0.0016). Receiver operating characteristic analysis showed that miR-223-3p concentration discriminates between AD, PD and MCI vs. HC, as well as between AD and PD. miR-223-3p serum concentration discriminates between AD/MCI and PD, suggesting that this molecule could be a potential non-invasive biomarker for differential diagnosis and prognosis of these neurodegenerative conditions.
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