Research Papers:

Long non-coding RNA GAS5 and ZFAS1 are prognostic markers involved in translation targeted by miR-940 in prostate cancer

Xin Chen _, Chao Yang, Shengli Xie and Edwin Cheung

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Oncotarget. 2018; 9:1048-1062. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.23254

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Xin Chen1,2, Chao Yang1, Shengli Xie1 and Edwin Cheung2

1Guangdong Key Laboratory of IoT Information Technology, School of Automation, Guangdong University of Technology, Guangzhou, China

2Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Macau, Macau, China

Correspondence to:

Xin Chen, email: [email protected]

Edwin Cheung, email: [email protected]

Keywords: prognostic marker; lncRNA; co-expression; network; prostate cancer

Received: August 02, 2017     Accepted: December 03, 2017     Published: December 14, 2017


Identification of prognostic biomarkers helps facilitate the prediction of patient outcomes as well as guide treatments. Accumulating evidence now suggests that long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) play key roles in tumor progression with diagnostic and prognostic values. However, little is known about the biological functions of lncRNAs and how they contribute to the pathogenesis of cancer. Herein, we performed weighted correlation network analysis (WGCNA) on 380 RNA-seq samples from prostate cancer patients to create networks comprising of microRNAs, lncRNAs, and protein-coding genes. Our analysis revealed expression modules that associated with pathological parameters. More importantly, we identified a gene module that is involved in protein translation and is associated with patient survival. In this gene module, we explored the regulation axis involving GAS5, ZFAS1, and miR-940. We show that GAS5, ZFAS1, and miR-940 are up-regulated in tumors relative to normal prostate tissues, and high expression of either lncRNA is an indicator of poor patient outcome. Finally, we constructed a co-expression network involving GAS5, ZFAS1, and miR-940, as well as the targets of miR-940. Our results show that GAS5 and ZFAS1 are targeted by miR-940 via NAA10 and RPL28. Taken together, co-expression analysis of gene expression profiling from RNA-seq can accelerate the identification and functional characterization of novel prognostic markers in prostate cancer.

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