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Future Microbiol. 2014;9(4):561-71. doi: 10.2217/fmb.14.5.

Towards improved shRNA and miRNA reagents as inhibitors of HIV-1 replication.

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Laboratory of Experimental Virology, Department of Medical Microbiology, Center for Infection & Immunity Amsterdam (CINIMA), Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


miRNAs are the key players of the RNAi mechanism, which regulates the expression of a large number of mRNAs in human cells. shRNAs are man-made synthetic miRNA mimics that exploit similar intracellular RNA processing routes. Massive amounts of data derived from next-generation sequencing have revealed miRNA species that are derived from alternative biosynthesis pathways. Here, we review recent progress in our understanding of these noncanonical routes of miRNA and shRNA biosynthesis. We focus on ways to use these novel insights for the design of more potent and specific RNAi reagents for therapeutic applications, including the AgoshRNA design, which is processed differently than regular shRNAs. We will also discuss the development of a durable gene therapy against HIV1.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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