Non-Coding RNA and Regulation of the Cancer Genome

"We investigated how lncRNAs contribute to the mechanisms of gene expression regulation in cancer cells."

DR. MAITE HUARTE
RESEARCHER. NON-CODING RNA AND REGULATION OF THE CANCER GENOME GROUP

In recent years there has been a major change in the conception of genome regulation. We now know that most of the cell's transcripts are generated from "non-conventional" genes that do not encode proteins, and a very significant part of them give rise to long non-coding RNA molecules (lncRNAs). Despite not coding for proteins, lncRNAs regulate genome functions and gene expression, and their alterations are inherent to diseases. 

The Cima Non-Coding RNA and Regulation of the Cancer Genome Group focuses its efforts on understanding how lncRNAs influence the regulation, propagation, and expression of the genome of cells, and how their functions are altered in cancer. This will help develop better therapies and diagnostics for this disease.

Our research combines the application of genomics, epigenomics, and molecular biology techniques with the analysis of patient samples. 

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Objectives of our research

To deepen the knowledge of the functions of lncRNAs and their molecular mechanisms.

Identify novel lncRNAs and their linkage to cancer.

Contribute to the development of improved cancer therapies and diagnostics based on lncRNAs.

FROM THE LABORATORY TO THE CLINIC

Role of lncRNAs in cancer

Our group has found that lncRNAs have critical functions associated with tumor suppressor or oncogenic genes, such as p53 or MYC, playing a key role in tumor transformation.

We have recently identified a new lncRNA called ALAL-1 that helps lung cancer cells evade the immune system. The blockade of ALAL-1 could drive anti-tumor therapies for these patients.

FROM THE LABORATORY TO THE PATIENT

Cutting-edge translational research

The research team of the Gene Therapy Program is fundamentally basic, but with a very translational vision and maintains close collaborations with teams from the Clínica Universidad de Navarra.


Clinical
translation

Improvement of therapies developed for genetic diseases and cancer to provide solutions for patients.


Transfer DNA or RNA in vivo

Implementation of new gene therapy technologies using gene editing or non-viral vectors.


Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs)

Development of new expression regulation systems, as well as the identification of new therapeutic targets.

<p>Fachada del Centro de Investigaci&oacute;n M&eacute;dica Aplicada (CIMA)</p>

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Thanks to the generosity of many people, the Cima Universidad de Navarra is a reality that strives to offer therapeutic solutions to achieve personalized medicine for patients.

Scientific activity of the Long Non-Coding RNAs
and Cancer Regulation Group