The LncRNA H19 promotes epithelial to mesenchymal transition by functioning as MiRNA sponges in colorectal cancer

Wei Cheng Liang, Wei Ming Fu, Cheuk Wa Wong, Yan Wang, Wei Mao Wang, Guo Xin Hu, Li Zhang, Li Jia Xiao, David Chi Cheong Wan, Jin Fang Zhang, Mary Miu Yee Waye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

375 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recently, the long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) H19 has been identified as an oncogenic gene in multiple cancer types and elevated expression of H19 was tightly linked to tumorigenesis and cancer progression. However, the molecular basis for this observation has not been characterized in colorectal cancer (CRC) especially during epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) progression. In our studies, H19 was characterized as a novel regulator of EMT in CRC. We found that H19 was highly expressed in mesenchymal-like cancer cells and primary CRC tissues. Stable expression of H19 significantly promotes EMT progression and accelerates in vivo and in vitro tumor growth. Furthermore, by using bioinformatics study and RNA immunoprecipitation combined with luciferase reporter assays, we demonstrated that H19 functioned as a competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) for miR-138 and miR-200a, antagonized their functions and led to the de-repression of their endogenous targets Vimentin, ZEB1, and ZEB2, all of which were core marker genes for mesenchymal cells. Taken together, these observations imply that the lncRNA H19 modulated the expression of multiple genes involved in EMT by acting as a competing endogenous RNA, which may build up the missing link between the regulatory miRNA network and EMT progression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22513-22525
Number of pages13
JournalOncotarget
Volume6
Issue number26
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015

Keywords

  • CeRNA
  • LncRNA
  • miRNA sponges

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    Liang, W. C., Fu, W. M., Wong, C. W., Wang, Y., Wang, W. M., Hu, G. X., Zhang, L., Xiao, L. J., Wan, D. C. C., Zhang, J. F., & Waye, M. M. Y. (2015). The LncRNA H19 promotes epithelial to mesenchymal transition by functioning as MiRNA sponges in colorectal cancer. Oncotarget, 6(26), 22513-22525. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.4154