Encyclopedia of Cancer

Living Edition
| Editors: Manfred Schwab

Molecular Therapy

  • Ingo Kausch von Schmeling
  • Christian Doehn
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27841-9_3819-2


Molecular therapy is a therapy with compounds which are rationally targeted against certain specific molecular structures.


There is yet no generally accepted definition of the term molecular therapy. A frequent opinion is that molecular therapeutics target diseases on an early molecular level and thus modulate the disease at its roots. This would comprise the classic gene therapy as well as other DNA- or RNA-based strategies. However, also other nonmolecular therapeutics such as chemotherapyinteract with nucleic acids. Additionally, nucleic acid-based drugs may also interact with proteins. Therefore, it seems more useful to define molecular therapy as a strategy which specifically targets certain molecular structures, although all therapies that work have a target with some kind of molecular structure. In some cases, the target is discovered first, while in others the drug is discovered before the target. In contrast to other therapeutic concepts such as...


Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Chronic Myeloid Leukemia Antisense Oligonucleotide Molecular Therapy Murine mAbs 
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See Also

  1. (2012) Small Interfering RNA. In: Schwab M (ed) Encyclopedia of Cancer, 3rd edn. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, p 3448. doi:10.1007/978-3-642-16483-5_5372Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Klinik für Urologie und KinderurologieAmmerland Klinik GmbHWesterstedeGermany
  2. 2.Urologikum LübeckLübeckGermany