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Members of the COST action CA17103 "The Delivery of Antisense RNA ThERapeutics (DARTER)" are a highly dedicated group of scientists, whose goal is (through COST networking tools) to allow RNA-targeting nucleic acid drugs to reach their full potential and become a mainstream therapeutic option. Antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) are a new class of drugs that, through precise targeting, could correct genetic defects for rare inherited diseases, modulate autoimmune or neurodegenerative diseases or target tumours or viruses. Regarding delivery, the ASO field is fragmented, with researchers in academia and industry working in isolation on specific conditions, generally focusing on therapeutic effects in target tissues. The created network of researchers acts together to achieve the objectives and create an impact in the field of ASOs therapeutics.

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DARTER acts through 3 Working Groups with research objectives (delivery strategies, model systems, safety and toxicology) and one capacity building group (stakeholder communication). Their objective is achieving consensus on protocols and assessment of ASO delivery and toxicology and training new researchers within a cooperative research framework. The available COST networking tools: Working Gropu Meetings, MC & Core Group Meetings, workshops & conferences, training schools, webinars, Short Term Scientific Missions (STMS), ITC Conference Grants, and data dissemination through various media give us a chance to make an impact.

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The main advantage of COST networks is that they group people with diverse scientific interests and diverse expertise. DARTER COST network contains participants from COST countries and several international partners, including academics, industrial partners, patient representatives and clinicians and it is open to other interested stakeholders. International scientific community strengthen research in all the participating countries and facilitate the exchange of knowledge over the borders.

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