The use of microRNAs as cervical cancer biomarkers




MicroRNAs; Regulation of gene expression; Cervical câncer; Biomarkers.


This work aimed to describe the role of miRNAs in the gene regulation of cervical cancer. For this integrative literature review, articles found in the PubMed, SciELO, Lilacs and Sciencedirect databases were used, selecting works published between 2011 and 2021, in Portuguese and English, considering the following descriptors: “microRNAs”, “regulation of gene expression”, “cervical cancer” and “biomarkers”. A total of 156 works were found, and finally, 17 works were selected for study. Studies have pointed to a direct relationship between miRNAs and the stages of development of cervical cancer. Several miRNAs, such as miR-21 and miR-135a, have their expression increased in cervical cancer cells when compared to their levels in normal individuals. Other miRNAs, such as miRNA-20a, miR-1246, miR-2392, miR-3147, miR-3162-5p and miR-4484, have been identified as promising biomarkers for the detection of metastasis in patients with cervical cancer. Variation in the expression levels of miRNAs, on the other hand, can interfere with sensitivity to chemotherapy, such as miR-155, which increases chemosensitivity to cisplatin, an antineoplastic agent. Thus, the analysis of miRNA signatures in patients such as cervical cancer appears as a promising tool for its diagnosis, prognosis and treatment, requiring their association with the usual methods for a better clinical management.


Aftab, M., Poojary, S. S., Seshan, V., Kumar, S., Agarwal, P., Tandon, S., ... & Das, B. C. (2021). Urine miRNA signature as a potential non-invasive diagnostic and prognostic biomarker in cervical cancer. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 1-13.

Banno, K., Iida, M., Yanokura, M., Kisu, I., Iwata, T., Tominaga, E., ... & Aoki, D. (2014). MicroRNA in cervical cancer: OncomiRs and tumor suppressor miRs in diagnosis and treatment. The Scientific World Journal, 2014.

Barquet-Muñoz, S. A., Pedroza-Torres, A., Perez-Plasencia, C., Montaño, S., Gallardo-Alvarado, L., Pérez-Montiel, D., ... & Cantú-de León, D. (2022). microRNA Profile Associated with Positive Lymph Node Metastasis in Early-Stage Cervical Cancer. Current Oncology, 29(1), 243-254.

Chaiwongkot, A., Vinokurova, S., Pientong, C., Ekalaksananan, T., Kongyingyoes, B., Kleebkaow, P., ... & von Knebel Doeberitz, M. (2013). Differential methylation of E2 binding sites in episomal and integrated HPV 16 genomes in preinvasive and invasive cervical lesions. International journal of cancer, 132(9), 2087-2094.

Chen, J., Yao, D., Li, Y., Chen, H., He, C., Ding, N., ... & Long, F. (2013). Serum microRNA expression levels can predict lymph node metastasis in patients with early-stage cervical squamous cell carcinoma. International journal of molecular medicine, 32(3), 557-567.

Deftereos, G., Corrie, S. R., Feng, Q., Morihara, J., Stern, J., Hawes, S. E., & Kiviat, N. B. (2011). Expression of mir-21 and mir-143 in cervical specimens ranging from histologically normal through to invasive cervical cancer. PloS one, 6(12), e28423.

Hasanzadeh, M., Movahedi, M., Rejali, M., Maleki, F., Moetamani‐Ahmadi, M., Seifi, S., ... & Avan, A. (2019). The potential prognostic and therapeutic application of tissue and circulating microRNAs in cervical cancer. Journal of cellular physiology, 234(2), 1289-1294.

Hull, R., Mbele, M., Makhafola, T., Hicks, C., Wang, S. M., Reis, R. M., ... & Dlamini, Z. (2020). Cervical cancer in low and middle income countries. Oncology Letters, 20(3), 2058-2074.

Iorio, M. V., & Croce, C. M. (2012). MicroRNA dysregulation in cancer: diagnostics, monitoring and therapeutics. A comprehensive review. EMBO molecular medicine, 4(3), 143-159.

Lei, C., Wang, Y., Huang, Y., Yu, H., Huang, Y., Wu, L., & Huang, L. (2012). Up-regulated miR155 reverses the epithelial-mesenchymal transition induced by EGF and increases chemo-sensitivity to cisplatin in human Caski cervical cancer cells. PLoS One, 7(12), e52310.

Leung, C. O., Deng, W., Ye, T. M., Ngan, H. Y., Tsao, S. W., Cheung, A. N., ... & Yeung, W. S. (2014). miR-135a leads to cervical cancer cell transformation through regulation of β-catenin via a SIAH1-dependent ubiquitin proteosomal pathway. Carcinogenesis, 35(9), 1931-1940.

Li, H., Sheng, Y., Zhang, Y., Gao, N., Deng, X., & Sheng, X. (2017). MicroRNA-138 is a potential biomarker and tumor suppressor in human cervical carcinoma by reversely correlated with TCF3 gene. Gynecologic oncology, 145(3), 569-576.

Liu, B., Ding, J. F., Luo, J., Lu, L., Yang, F., & Tan, X. D. (2016). Seven protective miRNA signatures for prognosis of cervical cancer. Oncotarget, 7(35), 56690.

Marth, C., Landoni, F., Mahner, S., McCormack, M., Gonzalez-Martin, A., & Colombo, N. (2017). Cervical cancer: ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines for diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. Annals of Oncology, 28, iv72-iv83.

Mou, Z., Xu, X., Dong, M., & Xu, J. (2016). MicroRNA-148b acts as a tumor suppressor in cervical cancer by inducing G1/S-phase cell cycle arrest and apoptosis in a caspase-3-dependent manner. Medical science monitor: international medical journal of experimental and clinical research, 22, 2809.

Pardini, B., De Maria, D., Francavilla, A., Di Gaetano, C., Ronco, G., & Naccarati, A. (2018). MicroRNAs as markers of progression in cervical cancer: a systematic review. BMC cancer, 18(1), 1-17.

Qiu, H., Liang, D., Liu, L., Xiang, Q., Yi, Z., & Ji, Y. (2020). A novel circulating miRNA-based signature for the diagnosis and prognosis prediction of early-stage cervical cancer. Technology in Cancer Research & Treatment, 19, 1533033820970667.

Rao, Q., Zhou, H., Peng, Y., Li, J., & Lin, Z. (2012). Aberrant microRNA expression in human cervical carcinomas. Medical oncology, 29(2), 1242-1248.

Sharma, G., Dua, P., & Mohan Agarwal, S. (2014). A comprehensive review of dysregulated miRNAs involved in cervical cancer. Current genomics, 15(4), 310-323.

Shishodia, G., Shukla, S., Srivastava, Y., Masaldan, S., Mehta, S., Bhambhani, S., ... & Bharti, A. C. (2015). Alterations in microRNAs miR-21 and let-7a correlate with aberrant STAT3 signaling and downstream effects during cervical carcinogenesis. Molecular cancer, 14(1), 1-13.

Silva, A. B. L. P., Feitosa, A. A., Júnior, A. A. S. G., da Cruz Diniz, C. B., de Brito, C. A., Gonçalves, I. C., ... & de Sousa Fideles, L. PERFIL EPIDEMIOLÓGICO DO CÂNCER DO COLO DO ÚTERO NO ESTADO DO PIAUÍ. PERFIL EPIDEMIOLÓGICO DO CÂNCER DO COLO DO ÚTERO NO ESTADO DO PIAUÍ, 1-388.

Souza, M. T. D., Silva, M. D. D., & Carvalho, R. D. (2010). Revisão integrativa: o que é e como fazer. Einstein (São Paulo), 8, 102-106.

Vaz, G. P., Bitencourt, E. L., Martins, G. S., de Carvalho, A. A. B., da Costa, S. B., & Júnior, P. M. R. (2020). PERFIL EPIDEMIOLÓGICO DO CÂNCER DE COLO DE ÚTERO NO ESTADO DO TOCANTIS NO PERÍODO DE 2013 A 2019. Revista de Patologia do Tocantins, 7(2), 114-117.

Wang, F., Liu, M., Li, X., & Tang, H. (2013). MiR-214 reduces cell survival and enhances cisplatin-induced cytotoxicity via down-regulation of Bcl2l2 in cervical cancer cells. FEBS letters, 587(5), 488-495.

Wang, J. Y., & Chen, L. J. (2019). The role of miRNAs in the invasion and metastasis of cervical cancer. Bioscience reports, 39(3), BSR20181377.

Wang, X., Xie, Y., & Wang, J. (2018). Overexpression of microRNA-34a-5p inhibits proliferation and promotes apoptosis of human cervical cancer cells by downregulation of Bcl-2. Oncology research, 26(6), 977.

Yao, T., Rao, Q., Liu, L., Zheng, C., Xie, Q., Liang, J., & Lin, Z. (2013). Exploration of tumor-suppressive microRNAs silenced by DNA hypermethylation in cervical cancer. Virology journal, 10(1), 1-7.

Zhang, L., Zhan, X., Yan, D., & Wang, Z. (2016). Circulating microRNA-21 is involved in lymph node metastasis in cervical cancer by targeting RASA1. International Journal of Gynecologic Cancer, 26(5).

Zhao, S., Yao, D., Chen, J., & Ding, N. (2013). Circulating miRNA-20a and miRNA-203 for screening lymph node metastasis in early stage cervical cancer. Genetic testing and molecular biomarkers, 17(8), 631-636.



How to Cite

SILVA, P. M. do N. . The use of microRNAs as cervical cancer biomarkers . Research, Society and Development, [S. l.], v. 11, n. 2, p. e25711225776, 2022. DOI: 10.33448/rsd-v11i2.25776. Disponível em: Acesso em: 4 mar. 2024.



Health Sciences