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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology - Volume 2006 2006, Article ID 83757, 7 pages

Review Article Institute for Chemistry and Biochemistry, Free University Berlin, Thielallee 63, Berlin 14195, Germany

Received 26 January 2006; Accepted 3 April 2006

Copyright © 2006 Jens Kurreck. 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.


The triumphant success of RNA interference RNAi in life sciencesis based on its high potency to silence genes in asequence-specific manner. Nevertheless, the first task forsuccessful RNAi approaches is the identification of highly activesmall interfering RNAs siRNAs. Early on, it has been found thatthe potency of siRNAs can varydrastically. Great progress was made when thermodynamic properties that influence siRNA activity were discovered. Designalgorithms based on these parameters enhance the chance togenerate potent siRNAs. Still, many siRNAs designed accordinglyfail to silence their targeted gene, whereas others are highlyefficient despite the fact that they do not fulfil the recommendedcriteria. Therefore, the accessibility of the siRNA-binding siteon the target RNA has been investigated as an additional parameterwhich is important for RNAi-mediated silencing. These and otherfactors which are crucial for successful RNAi approaches will bediscussed in the present review.

Author: Jens Kurreck



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