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Noncoding RNA Res. 2017 Dec 20;2(3-4):143-150. doi: 10.1016/j.ncrna.2017.12.002. eCollection 2017 Sep.

Translational applications of microRNAs in cancer, and therapeutic implications.

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Cancer Genetics Laboratory, Kolling Institute of Medical Research, St Leonards, 2065 NSW, Australia.
Northern Clinical School, Royal North Shore Hospital and University of Sydney, St Leonards, 2065 Sydney, NSW, Australia.
University of Sydney Endocrine Surgery Unit, Royal North Shore Hospital, St Leonards, 2065 Sydney, NSW, Australia.
EnGeneIC Pty Ltd, Lane Cove West, 2066 NSW, Australia.


The search for targeted novel therapies for cancer is ongoing. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) display a number of characteristics making them an attractive and realisable option. In this review, we explore these applications, ranging from diagnostics, prognostics, disease surveillance, to being a primary therapy or a tool to sensitise patients to treatment modalities such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy. We take a particular perspective towards miRNAs and their impact on rare cancers. Advancement in the delivery of miRNAs, from viral vectors and liposomal delivery to nanoparticle based, has led to a number of pre-clinical and clinical applications for microRNA cancer therapeutics. This is promising, especially in the setting of rare cancers.


Cancer; MicroRNAs; Rare cancers; Translational medicine

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