MicroRNAs: The jack of all trades

Sumaiyah K. Rehman, Gustavo Baldassarre, George A. Calin, Milena S. Nicoloso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Focusing on the pervasive role of microRNAs (miRNAs), we review the multiple steps of malignant transformation, outlining the common hallmarks of tumorigenesis: self-sufficiency in growth signals, insensitivity to growth-inhibitory signals, evasion of apoptosis, limitless replicative potential, sustained angiogenesis, and tissue invasion and metastasis. For each of these traits, we provide examples of miRNA contribution to the acquisition of a malignant phenotype. Finally, through an overview of the remarkable ability of miRNAs to regulate entire pathwaysas a result of the multiplicity of their targets, we highlight the attractive potential of developing miRNA-targeted therapies, which should affect all the aspects of tumorigenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-32
Number of pages13
JournalClinical Leukemia
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2009


  • Angiogenesis
  • Growth signaling
  • miRNA
  • Tumorigenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Hematology


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