Rewriting the Cancer Code
Scientists are targeting cancer's "housekeeping" genes with biological nanomachines.
Jonathan James | | Quick Read
“Rise of the DNA nanomachines” doesn’t just sound like a good title for a science fiction and/or apocalyptic movie – it is slowly becoming reality, with a number of groups doing increasingly inventive things. Indeed, DNA nanomachines are fast-emerging as a research area of distinct therapeutic potential (1). For example, deoxyribozymes – manmade enzymes capable of targeting and cleaving DNA sequences – have previously been trialled as anti-cancer agents (2), with efforts primarily focused on combining them with gene-therapy based approaches. Though efficacious in their primary mode of action, many deoxyribozymes demonstrate a lack of specificity for cancer cells, resulting in off-target effects in healthy tissue.
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