RNA therapeutics could represent the next generation personalized medicine. The variety of RNA molecules that can inhibit the expression of any mRNA using, for example, RNA interference (RNAi) strategies, or increase the expression of a given protein using modified mRNA together with new gene editing strategies open new avenues for manipulating the fate of diseased cells while leaving healthy cells untouched. In addition, these therapeutic RNA molecules can maximize the treatment of diseases and minimize its adverse effects. Yet, the promise of RNA therapeutics is hindered by the lack of efficient delivery strategies to selectively target these molecules into specific cells. Herein, we will focus on the challenges and opportunities of the delivery of therapeutic RNAi molecules into cancer cells with special emphasis on solid tumors. Solid tumors represent more than 80 percent of cancers and some are very challenging to treat, not merely due to physiological barriers but also since the tumor microenvironment (TME) is a complex milieu of accessory cells besides the cancerous cells. In this review, we will highlight various limiting factors to successful delivery, current clinical achievements and future outlook focusing on RNAi therapeutics to the TME.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering