Future Approaches for Treating Chronic Myeloid Leukemia: CRISPR Therapy
Departamento de Medicina, Universidad de Salamanca, 37007 Salamanca, Spain
Institute de Investigación Biomédica de Salamanca (IBSAL), 37007 Salamanca, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Magali Cucchiarini
Received: 11 January 2021 / Revised: 27 January 2021 / Accepted: 2 February 2021 / Published: 4 February 2021
In the last two decades, the therapeutic landscape of several tumors have changed profoundly with the introduction of drugs against proteins encoded by oncogenes. Oncogenes play an essential role in human cancer and when their encoded proteins are inhibited by specific drugs, the tumoral process can be reverted or stopped. An example of this is the case of the chronic myeloid leukemia, in which all the pathological features can be attributed by a single oncogene. Most patients with this disease now have a normal life expectancy thanks to a rationality designed inhibitor. However, the drug only blocks the protein, the oncogene continues unaffected and treatment discontinuation is only an option for a small subset of patients. With the advent of genome-editing nucleases and, especially, the CRISPR/Cas9 system, the possibilities to destroy oncogenes now is feasible. A novel therapeutic tool has been developed with unimaginable limits in cancer treatment. Recent studies support that CRISPR/Cas9 system could be a definitive therapeutic option in chronic myeloid leukemia. This work reviews the biology of chronic myeloid leukemia, the emergence of the CRISPR system, and its ability as a specific tool for this disease.