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Essay: Circulating miRNAs a diagnostic tool for cancer detection?

Dekker, B (2015) Essay: Circulating miRNAs a diagnostic tool for cancer detection? Bachelor's Thesis, Biology.

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MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNA sequences that can inhibit mRNA at post-transcriptional level. Many biological processes are influenced by microRNAs, for example: differentiation, proliferation, development and apoptosis. Deregulation in miRNA expression affects the protein expression and therefore it can cause all different kinds of diseases. The possibility to isolate miRNAs out of body fluids raised the question if circulating miRNAs could be used as biomarker for diseases. This review will discuss the possibility to use circulating miRNAs as diagnostic tool for cancer detection and in particularly lung cancer. In blood miRNAs can be found in serum and plasma as cell-free miRNAs and in extracellular vesicles. Alterations in specific miRNA levels are associated with specific cancers. Suggested was that the altered levels can be used for the diagnosis of cancer. But before miRNAs can be used as diagnostic tool a reliable and reproducible test is required. In technical point of view there are still problems. Pre-analytical variables can cause alterations in miRNA levels but also the use of different extraction methods can influence the miRNA level. For lung cancer specific miRNAs are found for detection and subclassification. Besides the detection, circulating miRNAs are also associated with the size and advanced stage and may have a prognostic value as well. Furthermore miRNAs are associated with different drug resistances and for that may have influence on the therapy strategy. The conclusion is that miRNAs could give a lot of information about a tumor for diagnosis, prognosis and therapy strategy. But still research needs to be done to create a reliable and reproducible test.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's Thesis)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Bachelor's Thesis
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:02
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:02

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