The role of circulating microRNAs in acute coronary syndromes: ready for prime time?

Gert Klug, Bernhard Metzler


Recently Navickas et al. published a review on the role of microRNAs (miRs) as biomarkers of cardiovascular disease in Cardiovascular Research (1). Based on a systematic literature research their aim was to determine the diagnostic and prognostic value of miRs in healthy subjects, subjects with stable coronary artery disease and patients with different forms of unstable coronary artery disease (unstable angina, non-STEMI and STEMI). They identified n=487 papers and extracted n=19 studies, reporting on 52 different miRs, after a rigorous quality check. The largest amount of evidence, through all stages of cardiovascular disease, was found for miR-133a/b (5 studies), miR-208a/b (6 studies) and miR-499 (7 studies). Furthermore the promising role of miR-1 (3 studies) in the diagnosis of acute coronary syndromes and the regulation of miR-145 in STEMI patients is highlighted. A meta-analysis, however, is not presented because of heterogeneous study designs and analytical reasons (1).