Role of microRNAs in the regulation of blood-brain barrier function in ischemic stroke and under hypoxic conditions in vitro
The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a highly specialized structure that separates the brain from the blood and allows the exchange of molecules between these two compartments through selective channels. The breakdown of the BBB is implicated in the development of severe neurological diseases, especially stroke and traumatic brain injury. Oxygen-glucose deprivation is used to mimic stroke and traumatic brain injury in vitro . Pathways that trigger BBB dysfunction include an imbalance of oxidative stress, excitotoxicity, iron metabolism, cytokine release, cell injury, and cell death. MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNA molecules that regulate gene expression and are emerging as biomarkers for the diagnosis of central nervous system (CNS) injuries. In this review, the regulatory role of potential microRNA biomarkers and related therapeutic targets on the BBB is discussed. A thorough understanding of the potential role of various cellular and linker proteins, among others, in the BBB will open further therapeutic options for the treatment of neurological diseases.