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Genetics Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 743050, 13 pages
Review Article

An Introspective Update on the Influence of miRNAs in Breast Carcinoma and Neuroblastoma Chemoresistance

1Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Malta, Msida MSD 2080, Malta
2Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Malta, Msida MSD 2080, Malta
3Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences, The University of Manchester, Manchester M1 7DN, UK

Received 30 June 2014; Revised 23 October 2014; Accepted 4 November 2014; Published 4 December 2014

Academic Editor: Francine Durocher

Copyright © 2014 Alessia Carta et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Chemoresistance to conventional cytotoxic drugs may occur in any type of cancer and this can either be inherent or develop through time. Studies have linked this acquired resistance to the abnormal expression of microRNAs (miRNAs) that normally silence genes. At abnormal levels, miRNAs can either gain ability to silence tumour suppressor genes or else lose ability to silence oncogenes. miRNAs can also affect pathways that are involved in drug metabolism, such as drug efflux pumps, resulting in a resistant phenotype. The scope of this review is to provide an introspective analysis on the specific niches of breast carcinoma and neuroblastoma research.