miR-122 target sites in liver cancer: study links three genes to patient survival

A new study shows that a molecule that regulates liver-cell metabolism and suppresses liver-cancer development interacts with thousands of genes in liver cells, and that when levels of the molecule go down, such as during liver-cancer development, the activity of certain cancer-promoting genes goes up. The findings could one day help doctors better predict survival in liver cancer patients and help determine whether the molecule — called microRNA-122 — should be developed as an anticancer drug.

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