Therapeutic potential for microRNAs

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MiRNAs are a conserved class of non-coding RNAs that negatively regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally. Although their biological roles are largely unknown, examples of their importance in cancer, metabolic disease, and viral infection are accumulating, suggesting that they represent a new class of drug targets in these and likely many other therapeutic areas. Antisense oligonucleotide approaches for inhibiting miRNA function and siRNA-like technologies for replacement of miRNAs are currently being explored as tools for uncovering miRNA biology and as potential therapeutic agents. The next few years should see significant progress in our understanding of miRNA biology and the advancement of the technology for therapeutic modulation of miRNA activity.

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