MicroRNA and cancer: Current status and prospective
Article first published online: 12 DEC 2006
Copyright © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
International Journal of Cancer
Volume 120, Issue 5, pages 953–960, 1 March 2007
How to Cite
Wu, W., Sun, M., Zou, G.-M. and Chen, J. (2007), MicroRNA and cancer: Current status and prospective. Int. J. Cancer, 120: 953–960. doi: 10.1002/ijc.22454
- Issue published online: 19 JAN 2007
- Article first published online: 12 DEC 2006
- Manuscript Accepted: 29 SEP 2006
- Manuscript Received: 28 MAR 2006
- G. Harold and Leila Y. Mathers Charitable Foundation
- Cancer Research Foundation Young Investigator Award
- tumor suppressor gene;
Gene expression in normal cells is highly regulated by complex gene regulatory networks. Disruption of these networks may lead to cancer. Recent studies have revealed the existence of an abundant class of small nonprotein-coding regulatory RNAs, known as microRNAs (miRNAs). MiRNAs may regulate diverse biological processes including development, cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis, through suppressing the expression of their target genes. Posttranscriptional silencing of target genes by miRNAs occurs either by cleavage of homologous target messenger RNAs (mRNAs), or by inhibition of target protein synthesis. Computational predictions indicate that 1 miRNA may target on hundreds of genes, and suggest that over 50% of human protein-coding genes might be regulated by miRNAs. MiRNAs are receiving increased attention in cancer genomic research. We are beginning to understand that miRNAs may act as oncogenes and/or tumor suppressor genes within the molecular architecture of gene regulatory networks, thereby contributing to the development of cancer. MiRNAs may provide useful diagnostic and prognostic markers for cancer diagnosis and treatment, as well as serving as potential therapeutic targets or tools. © 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.