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The Emerging Role of miRNAs for the Radiation Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer

Institute of Radiation Medicine (IRM), Department of Radiation Sciences (DRS), Helmholtz Zentrum München, 85764 Neuherberg, Germany
Department of Radiation Oncology, School of Medicine, Technical University of Munich (TUM), Klinikum rechts der Isar, 81675 Munich, Germany
Deutsches Konsortium für Translationale Krebsforschung (DKTK), Partner Site Munich, 81675 Munich, Germany
Division of Animal Physiology and Immunology, TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich (TUM), 85354 Freising, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cancers 2020, 12(12), 3703;
Received: 21 October 2020 / Revised: 17 November 2020 / Accepted: 4 December 2020 / Published: 9 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of miRNAs in Cancer—Analysis of Their Targetome)
Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive disease with a high mortality rate. Radiotherapy is one treatment option within a multimodal therapy approach for patients with locally advanced, non-resectable pancreatic tumors. However, radiotherapy is only effective in about one-third of the patients. Therefore, biomarkers that can predict the response to radiotherapy are of utmost importance. Recently, microRNAs, small non-coding RNAs regulating gene expression, have come into focus as there is growing evidence that microRNAs could serve as diagnostic, predictive and prognostic biomarkers in various cancer entities, including pancreatic cancer. Moreover, their high stability in body fluids such as serum and plasma render them attractive candidates for non-invasive biomarkers. This article describes the role of microRNAs as suitable blood biomarkers and outlines an overview of radiation-induced microRNAs changes and the association with radioresistance in pancreatic cancer.
Today, pancreatic cancer is the seventh leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide with a five-year overall survival rate of less than 7%. Only 15–20% of patients are eligible for curative intent surgery at the time of diagnosis. Therefore, neoadjuvant treatment regimens have been introduced in order to downsize the tumor by chemotherapy and radiotherapy. To further increase the efficacy of radiotherapy, novel molecular biomarkers are urgently needed to define the subgroup of pancreatic cancer patients who would benefit most from radiotherapy. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) could have the potential to serve as novel predictive and prognostic biomarkers in patients with pancreatic cancer. In the present article, the role of miRNAs as blood biomarkers, which are associated with either radioresistance or radiation-induced changes of miRNAs in pancreatic cancer, is discussed. Furthermore, the manuscript provides own data of miRNAs identified in a pancreatic cancer mouse model as well as radiation-induced miRNA changes in the plasma of tumor-bearing mice. View Full-Text
Keywords: pancreatic cancer; miRNA; radiotherapy; radioresistance; personalized medicine; biomarker; target pancreatic cancer; miRNA; radiotherapy; radioresistance; personalized medicine; biomarker; target
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MDPI and ACS Style

Nguyen, L.; Schilling, D.; Dobiasch, S.; Raulefs, S.; Santiago Franco, M.; Buschmann, D.; Pfaffl, M.W.; Schmid, T.E.; Combs, S.E. The Emerging Role of miRNAs for the Radiation Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer. Cancers 2020, 12, 3703.

AMA Style

Nguyen L, Schilling D, Dobiasch S, Raulefs S, Santiago Franco M, Buschmann D, Pfaffl MW, Schmid TE, Combs SE. The Emerging Role of miRNAs for the Radiation Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer. Cancers. 2020; 12(12):3703.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Nguyen, Lily; Schilling, Daniela; Dobiasch, Sophie; Raulefs, Susanne; Santiago Franco, Marina; Buschmann, Dominik; Pfaffl, Michael W.; Schmid, Thomas E.; Combs, Stephanie E. 2020. "The Emerging Role of miRNAs for the Radiation Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer" Cancers 12, no. 12: 3703.

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