Synthetic siRNA targeting human papillomavirus 16 E6: a perspective on in vitro nanotherapeutic approaches

Nanomedicine (Lond). 2018 Feb 1;13(4):455-474. doi: 10.2217/nnm-2017-0242. Epub 2018 Jan 31.


High-risk human papillomaviruses infect skin and mucosa, causing approximately 5% of cancers worldwide. In the search for targeted nanotherapeutic approaches, siRNAs against the viral E6 transcript have been molecules of interest but have not yet seen successful translation into the clinic. By reviewing the past approximately 15 years of in vitro literature, we identify the need for siRNA validation protocols which concurrently evaluate ranges of key treatment parameters as well as characterize downstream process restoration in a methodical, quantitative manner and demonstrate their implementation using our own data. We also reflect on the future need for more appropriate cell culture models to represent patient lesions as well as the application of personalized approaches to identify optimal treatment strategies.

Keywords: E6 oncogene; RNA interference; cell culture models; cervical cancer; dicer substrate siRNA; human papillomavirus 16; siRNA; siRNA therapy.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Female
  • Gene Knockout Techniques
  • Gene Silencing
  • Gene Transfer Techniques
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Human papillomavirus 16 / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry
  • RNA, Small Interfering / administration & dosage*
  • RNA, Small Interfering / genetics
  • Transfection
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / virology


  • RNA, Small Interfering