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MicroRNA-21 (miR-21)

In vitro and mouse studies suggest inhibiting miR-21 could help treat cancer. High throughput virtual screening identified a molecule that blocked the interaction between pre-miR-21 and dicer 1 ribonuclease type III (DICER1), which processes the pre-miRNA into a mature form. In glioblastoma, breast cancer and gastric cancer cell lines, the miR-21 inhibitor decreased proliferation, migration and invasion and increased apoptosis compared with vehicle. In orthotopic mouse models for glioma and breast cancer, the inhibitor decreased tumor growth and metastasis and increased overall survival compared with vehicle. Next steps include developing derivatives and targeting the treatment to cancers.

SciBX 6(30); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.784
Published online Aug. 8, 2013

Patent application filed covering epithelial cancers; unavailable for licensing

Shi, Z. et al. Cancer Res.;
published online June 28, 2013;
Contact: Chunsheng Kang, Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin, China