Autophagy is the process by which healthy cells degrade and recycle waste material. Researchers are finding that this vital function is interrupted in different forms of cancer, including brain cancer. A new review describes how researchers are repairing broken autophagy pathways in tumors using microRNAs, or miRNAs. miRNAs are small non-coding RNA molecules that regulate a variety of cellular processes— including autophagy. Understanding the molecular targets of miRNAs and their function is crucial, as it could lead to the development of new therapies for patients with brain tumors.