Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are germline variations interspersed in the human genome. These subtle changes of DNA sequence can influence the susceptibility to various pathologies including cancer. The functional meaning of SNPs is not always clear, being, the majority of them, localized in noncoding regions. The discovery of microRNAs, tiny noncoding RNAs able to bind the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of target genes and to consequently downregulate their expression, has provided a functional explanation of how some SNPs positioned in noncoding regions contribute to cancer susceptibility. In this paper we summarize the current knowledge of the effect on cancer susceptibility of SNPs included in regions related with miRNA-dependent pathways. Hereditary cancer comes up from mutations that occur in high-penetrant predisposing tumor genes. However, a considerable part of inherited cancers arises from multiple low-penetrant predisposing gene variants that influence the behavior of cancer insurgence. Despite the established significance of such polymorphic variants in cancer predisposition, sometimes their functional role remains unknown. The discovery of a new group of genes called microRNAs (miRNAs) opened an avenue for the functional interpretation of polymorphisms involved in cancer predisposition.

The Role of MicroRNAs in Cancer Susceptibility

Iuliano R;Dattilo V;Perrotti N;Trapasso F
2013-01-01

Abstract

Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are germline variations interspersed in the human genome. These subtle changes of DNA sequence can influence the susceptibility to various pathologies including cancer. The functional meaning of SNPs is not always clear, being, the majority of them, localized in noncoding regions. The discovery of microRNAs, tiny noncoding RNAs able to bind the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of target genes and to consequently downregulate their expression, has provided a functional explanation of how some SNPs positioned in noncoding regions contribute to cancer susceptibility. In this paper we summarize the current knowledge of the effect on cancer susceptibility of SNPs included in regions related with miRNA-dependent pathways. Hereditary cancer comes up from mutations that occur in high-penetrant predisposing tumor genes. However, a considerable part of inherited cancers arises from multiple low-penetrant predisposing gene variants that influence the behavior of cancer insurgence. Despite the established significance of such polymorphic variants in cancer predisposition, sometimes their functional role remains unknown. The discovery of a new group of genes called microRNAs (miRNAs) opened an avenue for the functional interpretation of polymorphisms involved in cancer predisposition.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12317/10234
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