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Brain cancer

MicroRNA-218 (miR-218)

In vitro and mouse studies suggest increasing miR-218 expression could help treat mesenchymal glioblastoma. In samples from patients with the highly necrotic mesenchymal subtype of glioblastoma, levels of miR-218 were lower and both activity and levels of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) normally targeted by miR-218 were greater than those in less necrotic subtypes. In mice intracranially implanted with glioblastoma cell lines, constitutive overexpression of miR-218 in the tumor cells increased sensitivity to chemotherapy compared with normal miR-218 expression and improved survival. Next steps include developing a method for delivery of the miRNA across the blood brain barrier.

SciBX 7(4); doi:10.1038/scibx.2014.111
Published online Jan. 30, 2014

Findings unpatented; unavailable for licensing

Matthew, L.K. et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA; published online
Dec. 24, 2013;
Contact: M. Celeste Simon, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa.