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This article is the author's final published version in Journal of Neuroinflammation, Volume 21, Issue 1, January 2024, Article number 29.

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Demyelination and failure of remyelination in the central nervous system (CNS) characterize a number of neurological disorders. Spontaneous remyelination in demyelinating diseases is limited, as oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs), which are often present in demyelinated lesions in abundance, mostly fail to differentiate into oligodendrocytes, the myelinating cells in the CNS. In addition to OPCs, the lesions are assembled numbers of activated resident microglia/infiltrated macrophages; however, the mechanisms and potential role of interactions between the microglia/macrophages and OPCs are poorly understood. Here, we generated a transcriptional profile of exosomes from activated microglia, and found that miR-615-5p was elevated. miR-615-5p bound to 3'UTR of myelin regulator factor (MYRF), a crucial myelination transcription factor expressed in oligodendrocyte lineage cells. Mechanistically, exosomes from activated microglia transferred miR-615-5p to OPCs, which directly bound to MYRF and inhibited OPC maturation. Furthermore, an effect of AAV expressing miR-615-5p sponge in microglia was tested in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) and cuprizone (CPZ)-induced demyelination model, the classical mouse models of multiple sclerosis. miR-615-5p sponge effectively alleviated disease progression and promoted remyelination. This study identifies miR-615-5p/MYRF as a new target for the therapy of demyelinating diseases.

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