LNA: a versatile tool for therapeutics and genomics

Trends Biotechnol. 2003 Feb;21(2):74-81. doi: 10.1016/S0167-7799(02)00038-0.


Locked nucleic acid (LNA) is a nucleic acid analogue that displays unprecedented hybridization affinity towards complementary DNA and RNA. Structural studies have shown LNA to be an RNA mimic, fitting seamlessly into an A-type duplex geometry. Several reports have revealed LNA as a most promising molecule for the development of oligonucleotide-based therapeutics. For example, Tat-dependent transcription and telomerase activity have been efficiently suppressed by LNA oligomers, and efficient cleavage of highly structured RNA has been achieved using LNA-modified DNAzymes ('LNAzyme'). Furthermore, convincing examples of the application of LNA to nucleic acid diagnostics have been reported, including high capturing efficiencies and unambiguous scoring of single-nucleotide polymorphisms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomimetic Materials / chemistry
  • Biomimetic Materials / metabolism
  • Biomimetic Materials / therapeutic use
  • DNA / chemistry
  • Gene Expression Profiling / methods
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Gene Expression Regulation / genetics
  • Genetic Therapy / methods
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Humans
  • Hybridization, Genetic
  • In Situ Hybridization / methods*
  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Molecular Structure
  • Oligonucleotides
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense / chemistry*
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense / metabolism
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense / therapeutic use*
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide
  • RNA, Double-Stranded / chemistry


  • Macromolecular Substances
  • Oligonucleotides
  • Oligonucleotides, Antisense
  • RNA, Double-Stranded
  • locked nucleic acid
  • DNA