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Development and therapeutic applications of oligonucleotides and peptides

Stanford University Department of Chemical and Systems Biology 269 Campus drive, School of Medicine Stanford, CA 94305-5174, USA


Targeting central biological processes for therapeutic applicationsusing large molecules such as proteins is costly. Alternatively, smallmolecules pose challenges since the interface area is normallylarge, flat and noncontiguous. Oligonucleotides, short polymers ofnucleotides, and peptides, short polymers of amino acids, modulategene expression and protein-protein interactions.Oligonucleotides and peptides demonstrate high specificity and highpotency while exhibiting low toxicity. Furthermore, oligonucleotidesand peptides have better tissue penetration and are less costly thanlarge molecules. Due to methodological improvement and a broadapplication to treating many human diseases, oligonucleotides andpeptides will contribute greatly to the research and development ofnew drug candidates and be used as novel therapeutics.This review discusses the synthesis and the therapeutic potential ofoligonucleotides and peptides.


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