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Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2004 Oct;4(10):1649-59.

Inhibition of hepatitis viral replication by siRNA.

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University of California Davis Medical Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Transplant Research Institute, 4635 2nd Ave, Suite 1001, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA.


Small interfering RNA (siRNA)-mediated sequence-specific gene silencing is a powerful tool to inhibit endogenous and exogenous gene expression, and it holds great potential to prevent and eradicate viral infection, for which existing therapy is inadequate, such as HIV, hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV). A number of studies have documented the effectiveness of siRNA against HBV or HCV at various regions of the viral genome in infected human hepatoma cell lines. Selected siRNA may reduce the production of viral replicons, as well as structural or non-structural proteins by > 90%. Only a few in vivo studies that demonstrated the efficacy of siRNA in the suppression of HBV replication in mice are available. Thus, reliable models of HBV and HCV infection in small animals or non-human primates are needed to evaluate the delivery and efficacy of siRNA as a therapeutic modality for viral hepatitis.

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