Background: Emerging evidence has manifested that many microRNAs (miRNAs) exert crucial roles in the responses and remission process of traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI). The present study aimed to investigate clinical significance of miR-34a concerning the assessment of neurological remission and prognosis after TSCI.
Methods: We examined the serum levels of miR-34a in patients with TSCI and healthy controls through real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) assay. Then, receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was used to determine the diagnostic value of miR-34a in TSCI. Finally, we detected the expression levels of miR-34a from serum samples over a 12-week period.
Results: The results of our study demonstrated that miR-34a was significantly down-regulated in TSCI patients compared with healthy controls. miR-34a may function a potential biomarker for TSCI diagnosis with an area under curve (AUC) of 0.8020. The expression of miR-34a was increased in the remission group compared to the non-remission group after 12 weeks post-injury. The expression of miR-34a was negatively related to TNF-alpha, IL-6, and IL-8.
Conclusions: Measuring serum expression level of miR-34a over time may be used in tracking the process and neurological remission of TSCI.