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Lara Schneider

In the last decade, miRNAs and their regulatory mechanisms have been intensively studied and many tools for the analysis of miRNAs and their targets have been developed. We previously presented a dictionary on single miRNAs and their putative target pathways. Since then, the number of miRNAs has tripled and the knowledge on miRNAs and targets has grown substantially. This, along with changes in pathway resources such as KEGG, leads to an improved understanding of miRNAs, their target genes and related pathways.
Cancer is a large class of diseases that are characterized by a common set of features, known as the Hallmarks of cancer. One of these hallmarks is the acquisition of genome instability and mutations. This, combined with high proliferation rates and failure of repair mechanisms, leads to clonal evolution as well as a high genotypic and phenotypic diversity within the tumor. As a consequence, treatment and therapy of malignant tumors is still a grand challenge. Moreover, under selective pressure, e.g., caused by chemotherapy, resistant subpopulations can emerge that then may lead to relapse.