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Long Noncoding RNA ZFPM2-AS1 Enhances the Malignancy of Cervical Cancer by Functioning as a Molecular Sponge of microRNA-511-3p and Consequently Increasing FGFR2 Expression

Authors Dai J, Wei R, Zhang P, Liu P

Received 13 November 2019

Accepted for publication 18 December 2019

Published 23 January 2020 Volume 2020:12 Pages 567—580


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Eileen O'Reilly

This paper has been retracted.

Jun Dai, 1 Rujia Wei, 2 Peihai Zhang, 3 Peishu Liu 1

1Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, Jinan, Shandong 250012, People’s Republic of China; 2School of Life Sciences, Liaocheng University, Liaocheng, Shandong 252004, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University (Qingdao), Qingdao, Shandong 266035, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence: Jun Dai
Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, 107 Wenhua West Road, Jinan, Shandong 250012, People’s Republic of China
Peihai Zhang
Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University (Qingdao), 758 Hefei Road, Qingdao, Shandong 266035, People’s Republic of China

Purpose: A long noncoding RNA called ZFPM2 antisense RNA 1 (ZFPM2-AS1) has been verified as a key modulator in multiple human cancer types. Nonetheless, the expression and functions of ZFPM2-AS1 in cervical cancer remain poorly understood. Therefore, our purpose was to characterize the expression pattern, clinical value, and detailed roles of ZFPM2-AS1 in cervical cancer.
Methods: Reverse-transcription quantitative PCR was carried out to measure ZFPM2-AS1 expression in cervical cancer. A Cell Counting Kit-8 assay, flow cytometry, Transwell migration and invasion assays, and a tumor xenograft experiment were conducted to determine the influence of ZFPM2-AS1 on cervical cancer cell proliferation, apoptosis, migration, and invasion in vitro and on tumor growth in vivo, respectively.
Results: ZFPM2-AS1 was found to be aberrantly upregulated in cervical cancer, and its upregulation was associated with unfavorable values of clinical parameters. A ZFPM2-AS1 knockdown significantly reduced cervical cancer cell proliferation, migration, and invasion and increased apoptosis in vitro. The ZFPM2-AS1 knockdown decelerated tumor growth of cervical cancer cells in vivo. Molecular investigation indicated that ZFPM2-AS1 acts as a molecular sponge of microRNA-511-3p (miR-511-3p) in cervical cancer cells. Fibroblast growth factor receptor 2 (FGFR2) mRNA was validated as a direct target of miR-511-3p in cervical cancer, and its expression was positively modulated by ZFPM2-AS1. The effects of the ZFPM2-AS1 knockdown on malignant characteristics of cervical cancer cells were greatly attenuated by miR-511-3p inhibition.
Conclusion: ZFPM2-AS1 promotes cervical cancer progression through upregulation of miR-511-3p–FGFR2 axis output, thereby pointing to possible diagnostics and therapeutics based on the ZFPM2-AS1–miR-511-3p–FGFR2 pathway.

Keywords: ZFPM2 antisense RNA 1, cervical cancer therapy, fibroblast growth factor receptor 2, microRNA-511-3p

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