BioScience Trends. 2023;17(1):21-37. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2022.01473)

RNA-binding proteins in metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD): From mechanism to therapy

Xu JW, Liu XY, Wu SQ, Zhang DJ, Liu X, Xia PP, Ling JT, Zheng K, Xu MX, Shen YF, Zhang J, Yu P


Metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) is the most common chronic liver disease globally and seriously increases the public health burden, affecting approximately one quarter of the world population. Recently, RNA binding proteins (RBPs)-related pathogenesis of MAFLD has received increasing attention. RBPs, vividly called the gate keepers of MAFLD, play an important role in the development of MAFLD through transcription regulation, alternative splicing, alternative polyadenylation, stability and subcellular localization. In this review, we describe the mechanisms of different RBPs in the occurrence and development of MAFLD, as well as list some drugs that can improve MAFLD by targeting RBPs. Considering the important role of RBPs in the development of MAFLD, elucidating the RNA regulatory networks involved in RBPs will facilitate the design of new drugs and biomarkers discovery.

KEYWORDS: metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), RNAbinding protein (RBP), non-coding RNA, RNA-RBP interaction

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