Research Reveals that Artificial DNA Can Locate and Eliminate Cancer Cells


eMediNexus    29 December 2022

A group of researchers from the University of Tokyo has developed a novel method of locating and eliminating cancer cells by using artificial DNA. According to the study, the group was given a pair of hairpin-shaped, cancer-curing DNA molecules structured using chemical synthesis.


The lead author of the study explained that the team has created artificial oncolytic (cancer-killing) hairpin DNA pairs called oHPs. These oHPs were triggered to form longer DNA strands when they encountered a short (micro) RNA called miR-21, which is overexpressed in some cancers.


He added that in typical cases, OHPs do not form longer strands due to their curved hairpin shape. However, when the artificial oHPs enter a cell and encounter the target microRNA, they open up to combine with it and form a longer strand. This then causes the immune system to recognize the presence of the overexpressed miR-21 as dangerous and activate an innate immune response, which ultimately leads to the death of the cancer cells.


He called the anticancer drug a selective immune amplification response that can target tumor regression, thereby providing a new class of nucleic acid drug candidate that is completely different from known nucleic acid drugs. He further revealed that the drug was effective against overexpressed miR-21 found in human cervical cancer-derived cells, human triple-negative breast cancer-derived cells, and mouse malignant melanoma-derived cells. 


(Source: https://www.livemint.com/science/health/how-artificial-dna-can-locate-and-eliminate-cancer-cells-see-research-here-11672271645799.html )

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