University of Kentucky Researchers Study RNA Nanotechnology Platform for Improving Treatment of Cancer and Viral Infections

September 04, 2012 03:02 PM EST By: Jennifer Rocha

Ultrastable RNA nanoparticles could one day effectively treat cancers and viral infections without affecting surrounding tissue.

The research team focused on RNA as part of its bottom up fabrication of the novel nanostructures. Using RNA nanotechnology developed by Dr. Peixuan Guo, the researchers created ultrastable RNA nanoparticles using re-engineered RNA fragments that were able to transport up to four therapeutic and diagnostic modules.  Their study was able to show that the administration of cellular functions grew progressively along with an increased number of functional modules in the nanoparticle.

According to the release, the RNA Nanotechnology platform has several advantages, including: “polyvalent nature, which allows simultaneous delivery of multiple functional molecules for achieving synergistic effects; modular design, which enables controlled self-assembly with defined structure; thermodynamically stable, which keeps the RNA nanoparticles intact in animal and human circulation systems, where they exist at very low concentrations; and chemically stable, which makes the nanoparticles resistant to RNase (an enzyme, which cleaves RNA) digestion in the blood serum.”


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