A microRNA (abbreviated miRNA) is a small single-stranded non-coding RNA molecule found in plants, animals and viruses, that functions in RNA silencing and regulating in the expression of numerous genes.
The deregulation of these miRNAs is associated with most of the human chronic pathological processes (cancer, diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases), so their analysis represents a field of increasing relevance. However, its small size and low concentration hinder the study and precise quantification of the miRNA species present in a biological sample.
At present miRNA-sequencing, is postulated as the most promising technique for the analysis of these pathological processes, although problems associated with the library preparation stage make its application difficult.
The present invention developed by a research group from a Spanish university proposes a method of manufacturing miRNA libraries for massive sequencing in the absence of the ligation reaction that commonly leads to the appearance of binding biases since they considerably alter the relative frequencies of the miRNA species.
The new technology uses nanotechnology for the preparation of the libraries and makes it possible to eliminate these binding biases, achieving an increase in efficiency and costs reduction. It uses magnetic particles that have covalently linked oligonucleotides on their surface, on which the miRNA is reverse transcribed and the sequencing adapters are added by Taq polymerase.
The university is looking for partners from the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industry interested in licensing this patented technology.