Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Education news and issues in the Ozarks.

RNA Targeting Research May Hold Key To Curing Cancer

  The possibility of curing fatal diseases, such as cancer, may be closer than we think.

Dr. Robert Delong, associate professor of biomedical sciences at Missouri State University, and his group of students are interested in Ribonucleic Acids (RNA) targeting, a very rapidly developing field in science.

Like DNA, RNA can be manipulated and designed to produce a variety of different nanostructures. RNA, however, is a more flexible structure that can fold into numerous complicated configurations.

Chemists all over the world are producing nanomaterials out of almost all of the different elements in the periodic table. The nanomaterials made out of each of the elements can be a completely different beast; physically, chemically and biologically.

It’s possible that by combining nanomaterials with RNA, it provides a key to curing some cancer. Since these materials have never been created before in nature, scientists don’t know what they will do to life and life’s processes at the cellular and molecular levels.

“So the question now is, when the nanomaterials go into the cells, how do they effect the molecules, for example the many types of the RNA, within them?” said Delong.

Listen to his full interview.