MicroRNA biomarkers could provide advance warning of heart attack

Heart attacks could in future be predicted days in advance using a wearable blood monitor, new research suggests.

Scientists have identified two biomarkers whose levels drop dramatically within two weeks of a heart attack.

The biomarkers studied for the research are microRNAs, small strands of genetic material that are able to switch off genes by interfering with the way their codes are translated.

The scientists believe that, when present, the microRNAs help to prevent heart attacks happening by blocking some unknown cardiac process.

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Dr Galenko said: “MicroRNAs turn things off. Whatever they usually turn off in people with heart disease before a heart attack isn’t being turned off when microRNA levels are reduced, which may be causing something else to be activated.

“MicroRNAs act like a watchdog, and when their levels are reduced, heart disease takes a turn for the worse and heart attacks are likely to occur.”

Read the full, original story: First step towards a heart attack ‘alarm’

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