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, 24 (5), R157-R172

MicroRNA Applications for Prostate, Ovarian and Breast Cancer in the Era of Precision Medicine


MicroRNA Applications for Prostate, Ovarian and Breast Cancer in the Era of Precision Medicine

Bethany Smith et al. Endocr Relat Cancer.


The high degree of conservation in microRNA from Caenorhabditiselegans to humans has enabled relatively rapid implementation of findings in model systems to the clinic. The convergence of the capacity for genomic screening being implemented in the prevailing precision medicine initiative and the capabilities of microRNA to address these changes holds significant promise. However, prostate, ovarian and breast cancers are heterogeneous and face issues of evolving therapeutic resistance. The transforming growth factor-beta (TGFβ) signaling axis plays an important role in the progression of these cancers by regulating microRNAs. Reciprocally, microRNAs regulate TGFβ actions during cancer progression. One must consider the expression of miRNA in the tumor microenvironment a source of biomarkers of disease progression and a viable target for therapeutic targeting. The differential expression pattern of microRNAs in health and disease, therapeutic response and resistance has resulted in its application as robust biomarkers. With two microRNA mimetics in ongoing restorative clinical trials, the paradigm for future clinical studies rests on the current observational trials to validate microRNA markers of disease progression. Some of today's biomarkers can be translated to the next generation of microRNA-based therapies.

Keywords: TGF-β; biomarker; clinical trials; microRNA; microenvironment.


Figure 1
Figure 1
Modulation of the TGF-β/BMP signaling pathways by miRs. Validated targets in prostate, ovarian, and breast cancer are indicated by the corresponding colored ovals. miR targets identified in other tissues are indicated in grey ovals, as miR targets in one tissue may not be effective in another tissue. Only relevant miRs discussed in the paper are shown here and by no means depict all the TGF-β/BMP-associated miRs.

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