RNADIAGON - Excellence in research and development of non-coding RNA DIAGnostics in ONcology
RNADIAGON is an academic-industrial consortium focused on research and development it the field of non-coding RNA diagnostics in oncology.
RNADIAGON is establishing a strong academic-industrial consortium focused on research and development in the field of non-coding RNA diagnostics in oncology.
RNADIAGON enables the development of personal skills and knowledge of early-stage and experienced researchers from Europe through their long-term stays at the US research center of excellence, and traineeships at the education center and manufacturing facilities of an industrial partner.
RNADIAGON is increasing the scientific excellence and quality of related research in the participating EU research institutions.
RNADIAGON enables the dissemination of new technologies and approaches related to this field among other EU research institutions and interested public.
This consortium enables development of personal skills and knowledge of early-stage and experienced researchers from 5 European academic centers through their (i) long-term stays at the US research center of excellence (MD Anderson Cancer Center, University of Texas, USA) and (ii) traineeships at the education center and manufacturing facilities of industrial partner (BioVendor, Inc.) developing certified (CE-IVD) diagnostics, who will work on the development of a new non-coding RNA diagnostic kit in colorectal cancer adopted here as a model project.
Plans and Objectives
To fulfil RNADIAGON objectives, EU partners will work on the specific aims related to their individual research focus and will go for the long-term stays to US and work there on their own research under independent supervision and guidance of senior researchers from US center.
The topic for each partner was selected accordingly to its own scientific history, background, long-term focus and funding.
All scientific objectives included within the RNADIAGON structure are closely related to the topic of small non-coding RNAs as diagnostic biomarkers in cancer.
The scientific objectives of RNADIAGON are:
the standardization of processes related to the small ncRNAs detection in clinical specimens
isolation and characterization of exosomal ncRNAs, and evaluation of their potential usage in colorectal cancer
identification of small ncRNA-based non-invasive biomarkers in colorectal cancer, hepatocellular carcinoma, and renal cell carcinoma
establishing an inter-sectoral collaborative platform between academic and industrial partners to enable long-term and sustainable translational and technological research in the field of innovative cancer diagnostics
Cancer occurs in more than 2 million individuals every year in Europe alone. It is widely recognized that early diagnosis and monitoring of the disease - during therapy and post-treatment follow-up - is a key step for successful patient management: it helps to offer on-time curative intervention and selecting the most appropriate therapy, improves the quality of life, while contributing to reduce the economic and social burden for both patients and society.
There are screening programs available for early detection of some cancers such as colorectal cancer (CRC). Unfortunately, current CRC screening tests suffer from unsatisfactory sensitivity and specificity and low compliance of the targeted population. On the other hand, there are cancers with poorly performing biomarkers as in the case of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), or no biomarkers at all (e.g. renal cell carcinoma (RCC), which limits not only the screening options but also the diagnostics or monitoring of the disease.
Therefore, there is a need for new diagnostic biomarkers and accurate technologies to enable precise detection of asymptomatic tumors in a short time, low costs and, if possible, with minimal invasiveness and risks for the patients.
From this perspective, cancer-specific small non-coding RNAs (small ncRNAs) circulating in body fluids such as blood serum or plasma represent a very promising diagnostic approach. Small ncRNAs are represented by a wide range of known and newly discovered RNA species in length up to 200 nucleotides (nt) which lack the protein-coding capacity that is associated with gene expression regulatory machinery in all eukaryotic cells. In relation to the tumor biology as well as cancer diagnostic biomarkers, the most examined small ncRNAs are, unambiguously, microRNAs (miRNAs) and PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs). Whereas miRNAs primarily regulate expression of protein-coding genes including oncogenes and tumor-suppressors, piRNAs suppress transposable elements at genomic and epigenetic levels and, thus, play crucial roles in the genome stability maintenance. These facts presume these molecules to be promising cancer biomarkers. Moreover, miRNAs have been repeatedly confirmed that they are highly stable even in harsh conditions including RNase digestion, extreme temperature, and pH, extended storage in frozen conditions and repeated freeze-thaw cycles.
Project RNADIAGON aims at development of personal skills and knowledge of early-stage and experienced researchers working in the field of small non-coding RNA diagnostics from five European research institutions through their long-term stays at one of the world-leading ncRNAs research centers in United States and traineeships at the education center and manufacturing facilities of industrial partner developing small ncRNAs-based certified diagnostics. This research and innovation staff exchange will increase the scientific excellence and quality of related research in the EU research institutions.
Irimie-Aghiorghiesei AI, Pop-Bica C, Pintea S, Braicu C, Cojocneanu R, Zimta AA, Gulei D, Slaby O, Berindan-Neagoe I.
Prognostic Value of MiR-21: An Updated Meta-Analysis in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma (HNSCC)
Journal of Clinical Medicne. 2019 Dec; 8(12): 2041. doi: 10.3390/jcm8122041.
Barth DA, Slaby O, Klec C, Juracek J, Drula R, Calin GA, Pichler M.
Current concepts of non-coding RNAs in the pathogenesis of non-clear cell renal cell carcinoma
Cancers (Basel). 2019 Oct; 11(10): 1580. doi: 10.3390/cancers11101580.
Braicu C, Buse M, Busuioc C, Drula R, Gulei D, Raduly L, Rusu A, Irimie A, Atanasov AG, Slaby O, Ionescu C, Berindan-Neagoe I.
A Comprehensive Review on MAPK: A Promising Therapeutic Target in Cancer
Cancers. 2019 Oct; 11(10): 1618. doi: 10.3390/cancers11101618.
Krepelkova I, Mrackova T, Izakova J, Dvorakova B, Chalupova L, Mikulik R, Slaby O, Bartos M, Ruzicka V.
Evaluation of miRNA detection methods for the analytical characteristics necessary for clinical utilization
Biotechniques. 2019 66(6): 277-284. doi: 10.2144/btn-2019-0021.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 824036.
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