The Role of MicroRNA in Paediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia: Challenges for Diagnosis and Therapy.
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Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) is the most common cancer of childhood. Although the overall survival of children with ALL is now more than 90%, leukaemia remains one of the leading causes of death from disease. In developed countries, the overall survival of patients with ALL has increased to more than 80%; however, those children cured from ALL still show a significant risk of short- and long-term complications as a consequence of their treatment. Accordingly, there is a need not only to develop new methods of diagnosis and prognosis but also to provide patients with less toxic therapies. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small ribonucleic acids (RNA), usually without coding potential, that regulate gene expression by directing their target messenger RNAs (mRNAs) for degradation or translational suppression. In paediatric ALL, several miRNAs have been observed to be overexpressed or underexpressed in patient cohorts compared to healthy individuals, while numerous studies have identified specific miRNAs that can be used as biomarkers to diagnose ALL, classify it into subgroups, and predict prognosis. Likewise, a variety of miRNAs identify as candidate targets for treatment, although there are numerous obstacles to overcome before their clinical use in patients. Here, we summarise the roles played by different miRNAs in childhood leukaemia, focussing primarily on their use as diagnostic tools and potential therapeutic targets, as well as a role in predicting treatment outcome. Finally, we discuss the potential roles of miRNA in immunotherapy and the novel contributions made by gut miRNAs to regulation of the host microbiome.
Biology of Childhood Leukaemia
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Journal of oncology, 2019, 2019 pp. 8941471 - ?