MicroRNAs and exosomes: key players in HIV pathogenesis

J. Sadri Nahand, F. Bokharaei-Salim, M. Karimzadeh, M. Moghoofei, S. Karampoor, H. R. Mirzaei, A. Tabibzadeh, A. Jafari, A. Ghaderi, Z. Asemi, H. Mirzaei, M. R. Hamblin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: HIV infection is well known to cause impairment of the human immune system, and until recently was a leading cause of death. It has been shown that T lymphocytes are the main targets of HIV. The virus inactivates T lymphocytes by interfering with a wide range of cellular and molecular targets, leading to suppression of the immune system. The objective of this review is to investigate to what extent microRNAs (miRNAs) are involved in HIV pathogenesis. Methods: The scientific literature (Pubmed and Google scholar) for the period 1988–2019 was searched. Results: Mounting evidence has revealed that miRNAs are involved in viral replication and immune response, whether by direct targeting of viral transcripts or through indirect modulation of virus-related host pathways. In addition, exosomes have been found to act as nanoscale carriers involved in HIV pathogenesis. These nanovehicles target their cargos (i.e. DNA, RNA, viral proteins and miRNAs) leading to alteration of the behaviour of recipient cells. Conclusions: miRNAs and exosomes are important players in HIV pathogenesis. Additionally, there are potential diagnostic applications of miRNAs as biomarkers in HIV infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)246-278
Number of pages33
JournalHIV Medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • AIDS
  • HIV
  • diagnostic biomarkers
  • exosomes
  • microRNA
  • pathogenesis mechanisms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'MicroRNAs and exosomes: key players in HIV pathogenesis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this