Exploring precision treatments in immune-mediated inflammatory diseases: Harnessing the infinite potential of nucleic acid delivery

Within this review, an in-depth exploration of therapeutic nucleic acids and their delivery mechanisms in immune-mediated inflammatory diseases (IMIDs) is presented. The review encapsulates key elements such as different types of nucleic acid molecules, delivery systems for nucleic acids, and the therapeutic use of nucleic acid delivery for IMIDs. Furthermore, the review delves into the potential opportunities and obstacles in the development and utilization of nucleic acid therapeutics within the realm of IMIDs.


Immune-mediated inflammatory diseases (IMIDs) impose an immeasurable burden on individuals and society. While the conventional use of immunosuppressants and disease-modifying drugs has provided partial relief and control, their inevitable side effects and limited efficacy cast a shadow over finding a cure. Promising nucleic acid drugs have shown the potential to exert precise effects at the molecular level, with different classes of nucleic acids having regulatory functions through varying mechanisms. For the better delivery of nucleic acids, safe and effective viral vectors and non-viral delivery systems (including liposomes, polymers, etc.) have been intensively explored. Herein, after describing a range of nucleic acid categories and vectors, we focus on the application of therapeutic nucleic acid delivery in various IMIDs, including rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis, asthma, ankylosing spondylitis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and uveitis. Molecules implicated in inflammation and immune dysregulation are abnormally expressed in a series of IMIDs, and their meticulous modulation through nucleic acid therapy results in varying degrees of remission and improvement of these diseases. By synthesizing findings centered on specific molecular targets, this review delivers a systematic elucidation and perspective towards advancing and utilization of nucleic acid therapeutics for managing IMIDs.

Author list:

Lingxiao Xu†, Zhenxuan Shao†, Xia Fang†, Zengfeng Xin, Shenzhi Zhao, Hongbo Zhang, Yu Zhang, Wenbiao Zheng, Xiaohua Yu*, Zengjie Zhang*, Lingling Sun*

How to cite:

L. Xu, Z. Shao, X. Fang, Z. Xin, S. Zhao, H. Zhang, Y. Zhang, W. Zheng, X. Yu, Z. Zhang, L. Sun, Exploration 2024, 20230165.