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Overexpression of the long non-coding RNA, linc-UBC1, is associated with poor prognosis and facilitates cell proliferation, migration, and invasion in colorectal cancer

Authors Gao X, Wen J, Gao P, Zhang G, Zhang G

Received 3 December 2016

Accepted for publication 31 December 2016

Published 22 February 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 1017—1026


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Ashok Kumar Pandurangan

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr XuYu Yang

Xunfeng Gao, Jianfan Wen, Peng Gao, Guowei Zhang, Gangqing Zhang

Department of General Surgery, The Second People’s Hospital of Guangdong Province, The Third Clinical Medical College of Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, People’s Republic of China

Abstract: Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) serve comprehensive roles in various diseases, including cancer. lncRNA upregulated in bladder cancer 1 (linc-UBC1) is a notable biomarker of prognosis in certain cancer types; however, its involvement in the progression of colorectal cancer (CRC) remains unknown. The present study aimed to investigate the expression of linc-UBC1 in patients with CRC and to investigate its effect on CRC cells. The expression levels of linc-UBC1 were estimated by reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction in clinical CRC specimens and matched adjacent non-tumor mucosa from 96 cases of CRC, as well as in a number of CRC cell lines. In addition, the biological roles of linc-UBC1 were examined using a cell counting kit-8 assay, flow cytometry, and migration and invasion assays following the downregulation of linc-UBC1 by small interfering RNA. The results revealed that linc-UBC1 was significantly overexpressed in CRC tissues and the majority of CRC cell lines compared with the matched non-tumor mucosa and normal intestinal epithelial cells. Furthermore, high expression levels of linc-UBC1 were significantly associated with large tumor size, greater tumor depth, lymph node metastasis, and advanced tumor-node-metastasis stages. Patients with abnormal expression of linc-UBC1 had poorer overall survival times according to Kaplan–Meier analyses. Furthermore, multivariate Cox regression analysis indicated that linc-UBC1 was a significant independent prognostic factor. The results also revealed that reducing the expression of linc-UBC1 led to the inhibition of migration, invasion, and proliferation of CRC cells in vitro. Taken together, the results of the present study suggest that overexpression of linc-UBC1 promotes proliferation and metastasis in CRC, and may be considered as a novel diagnostic marker of CRC.

Keywords: linc-UBC1, long non-coding RNA, colorectal cancer, diagnosis, prognosis, gene function

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