Role of microRNA in growth and spread of tongue cancer cells
#GS-3 #Science & Technology
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras have identified a specific microRNA (miRNAs) called ‘miR155’ that is overexpressed in tongue cancer.
The research team has shown that knocking out miR155 causes death of cancer cells, arrests the cell cycle and regresses tumour size in animal models and reduces cell viability and colony formation in bench top assays.
The finding could help develop molecular strategies to manipulate miR155 expression to develop therapeutics for tongue cancer.
The miRNAs affect cancer growth through inhibiting or enhancing the functions of certain proteins.
“MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are short noncoding RNAs containing 20–24 nucleotides that participate in virtually all biological pathways in animals.
They have been found to play important roles in many cancers, in carcinogenesis (start of cancer), malignant transformation and metastasis — the development of secondary cancer.
The miRNAs associated with cancer are called ‘Oncomirs’.”
Many of the Oncomirs affect cancer by suppressing the performance of tumoursuppressing agents.
Some of them can prevent the growth and spread of cancer cells and yet others prevent tumour growth itself.
miRNA manipulation is being combined with conventional cancer treatment methods such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy.