Research Papers:

SNHG8 is identified as a key regulator of epstein-barr virus(EBV)-associated gastric cancer by an integrative analysis of lncRNA and mRNA expression

Tao Huang, Yan Ji, Dan Hu, Baozheng Chen, Hejun Zhang, Chao Li, Gang Chen, Xingguang Luo, Xiong-wei Zheng and Xiandong Lin _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:80990-81002. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13167

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Tao Huang1,2,*, Yan Ji2,*, Dan Hu1,*, Baozheng Chen1, Hejun Zhang1, Chao Li1, Gang Chen1, Xingguang Luo3, Xiong-wei Zheng1,4, Xiandong Lin1,4

1Department of Pathology, Fujian Provincial Cancer Hospital and Fujian Medical University Cancer Hospital, Fuzhou, Fujian, China

2Institute of Health Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China

3Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA

4Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Translational Cancer Medicine, Fuzhou, Fujian, China

*Co-first authors

Correspondence to:

Xiong-wei Zheng, email: [email protected]

Xiandong Lin, email: [email protected]

Keywords: gastric cancer, epstein–barr virus, long non-coding RNA, biomarker, SNHG8

Received: July 10, 2016     Accepted: October 31, 2016     Published: November 07, 2016


The Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) is associated with a variety of cancers, including gastric cancer, which has one of the highest mortality rates of all human cancers. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been suggested to have important causal roles in gastric cancer. However, the interaction between lncRNAs and EBV has not yet been studied. To this end, we sequenced 11,311 lncRNAs and 144,826 protein-coding transcripts from four types of tissue: one non-EBV-infected gastric carcinoma (EBVnGC) and its adjacent normal tissue, and one EBV-associated gastric carcinoma (EBVaGC) and its adjacent normal tissue. Five lncRNAs showed EBVaGC-specific expression; of those, one (SNHG8) was validated using real-time PCR in an independent cohort with 88 paired gastric cancer and adjacent tissue samples. To explore the functions of SNHG8, we identified its mRNA targets on the lncRNA–mRNA co-expression network of the Illumina Body Map, which contains the RNA sequencing data of mRNAs and lncRNAs from 16 normal human tissues. SNHG8 lncRNA was found to affect several gastric cancer-specific pathways and target genes of EBV. Our results reveal the intertwined tumorigenesis mechanisms of lncRNA and EBV and identify SNHG8 as a highly possible candidate biomarker and drug target of gastric cancer.

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