Theranostics 2017; 7(12):3155-3167. doi:10.7150/thno.19646


Decoding Noncoding RNAs: Role of MicroRNAs and Long Noncoding RNAs in Ocular Neovascularization

Yan Zhang1✉, Siwei Cai1, Yurong Jia1, Chen Qi1, Jing Sun1, Hong Zhang1, Fei Wang1, Yunshan Cao2, 3✉, Xiaorong Li1✉

1. Tianjin Medical University Eye Hospital, Tianjin Medical University Eye Institute, Tianjin Medical University, College of Optometry and Ophthalmology, 300384, China;
2. Department of Heart Failure, Shanghai East Hospital, Tongji University School of Medicine; Research Center for Translational Medicine, Shanghai East Hospital, Tongji University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200120, China;
3. Department of Cardiology, Gansu Provincial Hospital, Lanzhou, Gansu Province, 730000, China.


Ocular neovascularization is a pathological sequel of multiple eye diseases. Based on the anatomical site into which the abnormal neovessels grow, ocular neovascularization can be categorized into corneal neovascularization, choroidal neovascularization, and retinal neovascularization. Each category is intractable, and may lead to blindness if not appropriately treated. However, the current therapeutic modalities, including laser photocoagulation, vitrectomy surgery, and anti-VEGF drugs, raise concerns due to limited efficacy, damage on retinal parenchyma and vasculature, and the patients' unresponsiveness to the treatments. Therefore, the in-depth study on pathogenesis of and the search for novel therapeutic targets to the ocular neovascularization are needed. During the last 10 years or so, a large number of literatures have emerged indicating a critical role of noncoding RNAs, particularly microRNAs (miRNAs) and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs), in the pathogenesis and regulation of the ocular neovascularization. This review summarizes the current understanding of the biosynthesis and functions of the miRNAs and lncRNAs, the regulation of the miRNAs and lncRNAs in neovascular eye diseases, as well as the roles of these noncoding RNAs in the disease models of ocular neovascularization, in the hope that it could provide clues for the pathogenesis of and molecular targets to the ocular neovascularization.

Keywords: eye, neovascularization, noncoding RNAs, microRNAs, long noncoding RNAs.

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How to cite this article:
Zhang Y, Cai S, Jia Y, Qi C, Sun J, Zhang H, Wang F, Cao Y, Li X. Decoding Noncoding RNAs: Role of MicroRNAs and Long Noncoding RNAs in Ocular Neovascularization. Theranostics 2017; 7(12):3155-3167. doi:10.7150/thno.19646. Available from