Cervical cancer represents one of the major problems of health women worldwide, especially in the developing countries. If discovered in its earliest stages, cervical cancer is successfully treatable; however, due to lack of proper implementation of screening programs, the majority of cervical cancer patients are diagnosed in advanced stages, which dramatically influence their outcome. Almost a half of these patients will suffer recurrence or metastasis in the following 2 years after therapy. If there are no immediate prospects in terms of developing new or more effective therapies, identifying new tools for early diagnosis, prognosis and treatment prediction remains a big challenge for cervical cancer. miRNAs have been validated to be key players in cell physiology, alterations in miRNA expression being associated with cancer progression and response to therapy. Cervical cancer studies have showed that alterations of miRNA expression can be identified in tumor tissues, exfoliated cervical cells and patients serum and that their transcription pattern is regulated by the present HPV genotype. Furthermore, miRNAs have been associated with patients response to therapy, therefore suggesting their potential to be used as biomarkers for cervical cancer diagnosis, prognosis and treatment response.
Part of the book: Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology
As master modulators of the human genome, miRNAs are involved in all cancer hallmarks, disrupting the normal function of their targets. By gaining or losing the function, miRNAs lead to the validation of tumor phenotype, its progression, and metastasis as well as to drug resistance. Increasing the evidence suggests that the modulation of miRNAs in cancer cells, by suppressing the oncogenic miRNAs (oncomiRs) and substituting the deficient tumor suppressive miRNAs (TS-miRNAs), could become a reliable tool for improving the cancer therapy. In this chapter, we will present an up-to-date overview of the role of miRNA-based therapeutics in oncology, highlighting their role in cancer management, how these therapies can be used, and which would be the future challenges related to miRNA-based therapies.
Part of the book: Antisense Therapy