LncRNAs regulate cancer metastasis via binding to functional proteins

Liting Yang, Yanyan Tang, Fang Xiong, Yi He, Fang Wei, Shanshan Zhang, Can Guo, Bo Xiang, Ming Zhou, Ni Xie, Xiaoling Li, Yong Li, Guiyuan Li, Wei Xiong and Zhaoyang Zeng _

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:1426-1443. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.22840

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Liting Yang1,2,3, Yanyan Tang2, Fang Xiong1, Yi He2,4, Fang Wei2, Shanshan Zhang1, Can Guo2, Bo Xiang2, Ming Zhou2, Ni Xie5, Xiaoling Li2, Yong Li2,6, Guiyuan Li1,2,3, Wei Xiong1,2,3 and Zhaoyang Zeng1,2,3

1The Key Laboratory of Carcinogenesis of the Chinese Ministry of Health, Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China

2The Key Laboratory of Carcinogenesis and Cancer Invasion of the Chinese Ministry of Education, Cancer Research Institute, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China

3Hunan Key Laboratory of Nonresolving Inflammation and Cancer, Disease Genome Research Center, The Third Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China

4Hunan Key Laboratory of Translational Radiation Oncology, Hunan Cancer Hospital and The Affiliated Cancer Hospital of Xiangya School of Medicine, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China

5Core Laboratory, Shenzhen Second People’s Hospital, First Affiliated Hospital of Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China

6Department of Cancer Biology, Lerner Research Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, USA

Correspondence to:

Zhaoyang Zeng, email: [email protected]

Fang Xiong, email: [email protected]

Keywords: lncRNA; functional proteins; metastasis; localization; stabilization

Received: April 05, 2017    Accepted: November 13, 2017    Published: December 01, 2017


Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and metastasis is a crucial characteristic of malignancy. Recent studies have shown that lncRNAs play an important role in regulating cancer metastasis through various molecular mechanisms. We briefly summarize four known molecular functions of lncRNAs, including their role as a signal, decoy, guide and scaffold. No matter which pattern lncRNAs follow to carry out their functions, the proteins that lncRNAs bind to are important for them to exhibit their gene-regulating properties. We further illustrate that lncRNAs regulate the localization, stabilization or modification of their binding proteins to realize the binding role of lncRNAs. In this review, we focus on the interactions between lncRNAs and their binding proteins; moreover, we focus on the mechanisms of the collaborative work of lncRNAs and their binding proteins in cancer metastasis, thus evaluating the potential of lncRNAs as prospective novel therapeutic targets in cancer.

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