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A breakthrough in mRNA research has been made at the UW

MedExpress Team

Medexpress

Published March 11, 2024 11:57

A breakthrough in mRNA research has been made at the UW - Header image
Fot. Getty Images/iStockphoto
A team of researchers from the University of Warsaw, led by Professor Jacek Jemielite (CeNT) and Dr. Joanna Kowalska (FUW), in collaboration with a team from the Warsaw Medical University and the UW's spin-off company ExploRNA Therapeutics, has developed a new mRNA modification. According to Professor Jacek Jemielite, president of ExploRNA, the properties of the new molecule could be groundbreaking for modern medicine. The discovery will enable the further development of modern targeted therapies based on mRNA technology, including the treatment of rare diseases or the design of cancer vaccines.

- With this technology, the medical world can think of much broader applications of mRNA. We are no longer just talking about the production of anti-covid vaccines, which seems to be the simplest application of mRNA technology. Such an efficiently translatable mRNA molecule can be used to design new anti-cancer therapies, apply to the treatment of rare diseases and various diseases with a genetic basis, says Prof. Jacek Jemielity of the University of Warsaw's Center for New Technologies (CeNT).

Work on a universal therapeutic mRNA

Researchers at the UW sought to modify the mRNA molecule in such a way as to obtain as much therapeutic protein as possible, with the lowest possible dose of therapeutic mRNA. In the present study, the researchers, inspired by biology, proposed a modification of the 5' end of the mRNA, in a position that often undergoes natural modifications under cellular conditions (methylation at the N6 position of adenosine as the first nucleotide at the 5' end). This is the so-called post-transcriptional modification, which occurs in cells already after mRNA biosynthesis. It is worth noting that this modification is reversible and there is an enzyme in cells capable of removing it (FTO). Th...

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