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A recent study published last month provides evidence that the presence of small pieces of genetic material, called microRNAs (miRNAs), in the cancer cells can predict response to treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) in patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC). The miRNAs define patients refractory to TKI therapy who have a poor prognosis. In these patients, the tumour will continue to grow, despite treatment with TKIs. TKIs are antiangiogenic drugs used frequently to treat renal cell carcinoma. The study was carried out using tumour tissue samples from 74 patients in Spain.