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The expression of microRNA-324-3p as a tumor suppressor in nasopharyngeal carcinoma and its clinical significance

Authors Zhang H, Sun Y, Li J, Huang L, Tan S, Yang F, Li H

Received 17 June 2017

Accepted for publication 11 August 2017

Published 11 October 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 4935—4943


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Ingrid Espinoza

Han-qun Zhang,1,* Yi Sun,1,* Jian-quan Li,2,3,* Li-min Huang,1 Shi-sheng Tan,1 Fei-yue Yang,1 Hang Li1

1Department of Oncology, Guizhou Provincial People’s Hospital, Guizhou, People’s Republic of China; 2Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences, Newcastle University, Framlington Place, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK; 3Department of Intensive Care Unit, Guizhou Provincial People’s Hospital, Guizhou, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Objective: This study aimed to determine the expression, clinical significance, and possible biologic function of microRNA-324-3p in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) tissues.
Methods: In total, 54 NPC and 35 control tissues were collected. The correlation between miR-324-3p expression and the clinicopathologic characteristics was analyzed. A dual-luciferase reporter gene assay was employed to examine the predicted target gene of miR-324-3p. The miR-324-3p expression level in 5–8F cells was determined with quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction following the transfection of miR-324-3p mimics and inhibitors. Cell proliferation and the percentage of apoptosis were measured with MTT and flow cytometry. Cell invasion ability was assessed by Transwell invasion assay.
Results: Our results showed that miR-324-3p was downregulated in the NPC tissues. The expression level of miR-324-3p in poorly differentiated NPC was significantly reduced in comparison with that in well/moderately differentiated NPC. The expression level in clinical stages III/IV was lower than that in clinical stages I/II. Moreover, the expression level of miR-324-3p was significantly lower in NPC patients with lymph node metastasis than that in NPC patients without lymph node metastasis. NPC patients with higher levels of miR-324-3p expression also demonstrated a longer survival time. Predictions from bioinformatics indicated the Hedgehog pathway transcription gene GLI3 as the target gene of miR-324-3p, and the dual-luciferase reporter assay showed that miR-324-3p is directly combined with the 3´-untranslated region of GLI3. The overexpression of miR-324-3p suppressed cell proliferation and invasion, and it enhanced apoptosis in 5–8F cells.
Conclusion: miR-324-3p can act as a tumor suppressor in NPC cells by the negative regulation of GLI3 gene.

Keywords: nasopharyngeal carcinoma, microRNA, invasion, prognosis, survival

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