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Trends Mol Med. 2014 Aug;20(8):460-9. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2014.06.005. Epub 2014 Jul 12.

MicroRNAs in cancer: biomarkers, functions and therapy.

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Leeds Institute of Cancer and Pathology and Yorkshire Regional Cytogenetics Unit, St James's University Hospital, Beckett Street, Leeds, LS9 7TF, UK.
Department of Neurosurgery, The Ohio State University Medical Center, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.
Department of Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA. Electronic address:


The emergence of microRNAs has been one of the defining developments in cancer biology over the past decade, and the explosion of knowledge in this area has brought forward new diagnostic and therapeutic opportunities. The importance of microRNAs in cancer has been underlined by the identification of alterations in microRNA target binding sites and the microRNA processing machinery in tumor cells. Clinical trials utilizing microRNA profiling for patient prognosis and clinical response are now underway, and the first microRNA mimic entered the clinic for cancer therapy in 2013. In this article we review the potential applications of microRNAs for the clinical assessment of patient outcome in cancer, as well as in cancer monitoring and therapy.


cancer; clinical; microRNA; prognosis; signature

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