Vol 59, No 4 (2021)
Review paper
Published online: 2021-12-01

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Current status and development trend of miRNAs in osteoporosis-related research: A bibliometric analysis

Li Yun12, Lining Wang123, Yalan Pan14, Mengmin Liu12, Qiuge Han12, Jie Sun15, Guanglu Yang15, Jirimutu Xiao1, Yang Guo15, Yong Ma125
Pubmed: 34852180
Folia Histochem Cytobiol 2021;59(4):203-211.


Introduction. The occurrence of osteoporosis (OP) has drawn considerable attention from scholars around the world due to the significant impacts thereof on the social economy and the quality of human life. OP research has been rapidly expanding since the inclusion of microRNAs (miRNAs) as critical regulators of gene-expression. However, despite the ability to evaluate miRNA gene therapy in OP being enhanced, there has been a scarcity of updated citation analyses that reflect such developments. In the present study, through bibliometric analysis, the global research activity and trends in regard to the relationship between OP and miRNAs were reviewed.

Methods. Publications related to miRNA and OP from 2000 to 2021 were retrieved via Web of Science (WoS). The data included publication years, countries, journals, institutions, authors and keywords, and were sorted and summarized by bibliometrics, before being visually analyzed through VOS Viewer.

Results. In the past five years, 599 articles have been published, with said studies accounting for 79.11% of all relevant documents, indicating the increased interest in the present research topic. The country with the highest contribution rate was China, and the publication rate of Journal of Bone and Mineral Research was the highest, followed by Bone. The institutions with the highest contribution rate were Nanjing Medical University. The most frequently occurring keywords were clustered into five groups. The research area of the first group described that circulating miRNA would be a potential biomarker for postmenopausal osteoporosis (PMOP). The remaining four groups involved the influences of miRNAs and exosomes on the osteogenic and adipogenic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), and the interactions of lncRNA and miRNA with OP.

Conclusions. The results of the present study will expand the research on miRNAs and OP. The research direction with the highest frequency was the miRNAs acting on osteoblasts and osteoclasts. The influence of miRNAs carried by exosomes on the differentiation of MSCs might become an effective method for OP cell-free treatment.

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