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Cell Res. 2004 Dec;14(6):460-6.

RNAi, a new therapeutic strategy against viral infection.

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Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 15 Datun Road, Beijing 100101, China.


RNA interference (RNAi) is an adaptive defense mechanism triggered by double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). It is a powerful reverse genetic tool that has been widely employed to silence gene expression in mammalian and human cells. RNAi-based gene therapies, especially in viral diseases have become more and more interesting and promising. Recently, small interfering RNA (siRNA) can be used to protect host from viral infection, inhibit the expression of viral antigen and accessory genes, control the transcription and replication of viral genome, hinder the assembly of viral particles, and display influences in virus-host interactions. In this review, we attempt to present recent progresses of this breakthrough technology in the above fields and summarize the possibilities of siRNA-based drugs.

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