Journal List > J Korean Soc Transplant > v.29(3) > 1034455

J Korean Soc Transplant. 2015 Sep;29(3):101-108. Korean.
Published online September 30, 2015.
Copyright © 2015 The Korean Society for Transplantation
Current Prospects of RNA Interference-based Therapy in Organ Transplantation
Jae Young Kim, Ph.D.
Department of Life Science, Gachon University, Seongnam, Korea.

Corresponding author: Jae Young Kim. Department of Life Science, Gachon University, 1342 Seongnamdaero, Sujeong-gu, Seongnam 13120, Korea. Tel: 82-31-750-4762, Fax: 82-31-750-8573, Email:
Received September 02, 2015; Revised September 10, 2015; Accepted September 10, 2015.


RNA interference (RNAi) is a normal cellular process in which small RNAs control gene expression. siRNAs introduced into cells suppress gene expression through their recognition and cleavage of cognate mRNAs in a sequence specific manner. Due to its highly specific mode of action, RNAi has recently been tested for treatment or prevention of various diseases including organ transplantation as well as basic biomedical research. However, to achieve clinical success, there are some important issues that should be fully validated. First, siRNAs should be properly designed to avoid off-target effects. Second, siRNAs must be modified so as not to induce innate immune responses. Third, selective delivery of siRNA into desired organs or tissues is required. Despite such prerequisites, siRNAs are thought to be superior to traditional small molecule drug in terms of new drug development. In addition, in case of heart and islet transplantation which probably requires preservation of organs or cultivation of tissues for a while, siRNAs can be added to preserving solution or medium to control target gene expression during this period. In many research studies, mediators of innate immune response, inflammation, and cell death have been tested for alleviation of tissue injury and immune rejection after transplantation as potent targets of RNAi. We suggest that elucidation of exact mechanisms for tissue injury and immune rejection and subsequent selection and validation of target of RNAi in future studies might be helpful in enabling RNAi-based therapy in clinical organ transplantation to become a reality.

Keywords: RNA interference; Small interfering RNA; Organ transplantation


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