Most microRNAs (miRNAs) are noncoding, conserved RNA molecules in vertebrates, and their roles are similar and very important. MiRNAs usually have tissue-specific expression, and abnormal levels of miRNAs have been associated with diseases and have been used as disease biomarkers. MiRNAs are widely involved in biological processes by regulating target mRNAs. MiR-124 is one of the best studied miRNAs in organisms. By targeting different mRNAs, miR-124 plays important roles in the central nervous system, cellular infiltration, pathophysiological processes of cardiovascular diseases, inflammation, immunity and tolerance, etc. This review mainly focuses on tissue-specific or abnormal expression of miR-124 as a biomarker and on the ways miR-124 for the treatment of serious diseases such as cancers.
Key words: miR-124, apoptosis, immune responses, diseases.
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