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Zhu H.,Center for Molecular Engineering for Theranostics | Li J.,Center for Molecular Engineering for Theranostics | Zhang X.-B.,Center for Molecular Engineering for Theranostics | Ye M.,Center for Molecular Engineering for Theranostics | And 2 more authors.
ChemMedChem | Year: 2014

Aptamers are emerging as promising therapeutic agents and recognition elements. In particular, cell-SELEX (systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment) allows in vitro selection of aptamers selective to whole cells without prior knowledge of the molecular signatures on the cell surface. The advantage of aptamers is their high affinitiy and binding specificity towards the target. This Minireview focuses on single-stranded (ss) oligonucleotide (DNA or RNA)-based aptamers as cancer therapeutics/theranostics. Specifically, aptamer-nano-material conjugates, aptamer-drug conjugates, targeted phototherapy and targeted biotherapy are covered in detail. In reviewing the literature, the potential of aptamers as delivery systems for therapeutic and imaging applications in cancer is clear, however, major challenges remain to be resolved, such as the poorly understood pharmacokinetics, toxicity and off-target effects, before they can be fully exploited in a clinical setting. © 2015 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. Source

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