MiRNAs in pancreatic cancer: Therapeutic potential, delivery challenges and strategies

Deepak Chitkara, Anupama Mittal, Ram I. Mahato

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a severe pancreatic malignancy and is predicted to victimize 1.5% of men and women during their lifetime (Cancer statistics: SEER stat fact sheet, National Cancer Institute, 2014). miRNAs have emerged as a promising prognostic, diagnostic and therapeutic tool to fight against pancreatic cancer. miRNAs could modulate gene expression by imperfect base-pairing with target mRNA and hence provide means to fine-tune multiple genes simultaneously and alter various signaling pathways associated with the disease. This exceptional miRNA feature has provided a paradigm shift from the conventional one drug one target concept to one drug multiple target theory. However, in vivo miRNA delivery is not fully realized due to challenges posed by this special class of therapeutic molecules, which involves thorough understanding of the biogenesis and physicochemical properties of miRNA and delivery carriers along with the pathophysiology of the PDAC. This review highlights the delivery strategies of miRNA modulators (mimic/inhibitor) in cancer with special emphasis on PDAC since successful delivery of miRNA in vivo constitutes the major challenge in clinical translation of this promising class of therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34-52
Number of pages19
JournalAdvanced Drug Delivery Reviews
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Cationic carriers
  • Chemical modifications
  • Chemoresistance
  • Desmoplasia
  • EMT
  • MiRNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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