Non-coding RNAs: the riddle of the transcriptome and their perspectives in cancer
Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) constitute a heterogeneous group of RNA molecules in terms of biogenesis, biological function as well as length and structure. These biological molecules have gained attention recently as a potentially crucial layer of tumor cell progression or regulation. ncRNAs are expressed in a broad spectrum of tumors, and they play an important role not only in maintaining but also in promoting cancer development and progression. Recent discoveries have revealed that ncRNAs may act as key signal transduction mediators in tumor signaling pathways by interacting with RNA or proteins. These results reinforce the hypothesis, that ncRNAs constitute therapeutic targets, and point out their clinical potential as stratification markers. The major purpose of this review is to mention the emergence of the importance of ncRNAs, as molecules which are correlated with cancer, and to discuss their clinical implicit as prognostic diagnostic indicators, biomarkers, and therapeutic targets.