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Revista Cubana de Medicina

versão impressa ISSN 0034-7523


FRONTELA NODA, Maydelín. MicroRNAs in cancer - from research to the clinical practice. Rev cubana med [online]. 2012, vol.51, n.4, pp.325-335. ISSN 0034-7523.

The microRNAs (miRNAs) are a type of non-coding RNAs that act as gene expression regulators. The sequences of many of them are preserved into unrelated organisms, all of which suggests that these molecules do participate in essential biological processes. The miRNA expressions are often altered in many types of human cancers and they are critical to carcinogenesis, since they work as tumor suppressor genes or as oncogenes. Recent studies have proved that miRNAs are very associated to the cancer progression including the growth of tumor, the tumoral differentiation, the adhesion, the apoptosis, the invasion and the formation of metastasis. This literature review presented the basic and translational research carried out in the last decade, a period that may be called "the revolution of miRNAs" in the molecular oncology. It covered the characteristics, the biogenesis and processing and the functions of miRNAs as well as the mechanisms that modify their expression in cancer. The miRNAs have aroused great interest because of their potential applications in the field of medicine; therefore, the future perspectives in the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of cancer by using miRNAs were also addressed.

Palavras-chave : miRNAs; human cancer; diagnosis; prognosis; therapy.

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