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Cancer Res. 2019 Apr 1;79(7):1398-1412. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-18-0419. Epub 2018 Dec 18.

Nutrient Stress-Dysregulated Antisense lncRNA GLS-AS Impairs GLS-Mediated Metabolism and Represses Pancreatic Cancer Progression.

Author information

1
Department of Emergency Surgery, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.
2
Deparment of Pancreatic Surgery, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.
3
Department of Emergency Surgery, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China. gangzhao@hust.edu.cn.
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Contributed equally

Abstract

Cancer cells are known to undergo metabolic reprogramming, such as glycolysis and glutamine addiction, to sustain rapid proliferation and metastasis. It remains undefined whether long noncoding RNAs (lncRNA) coordinate the metabolic switch in pancreatic cancer. Here we identify a nuclear-enriched antisense lncRNA of glutaminase (GLS-AS) as a critical regulator involved in pancreatic cancer metabolism. GLS-AS was downregulated in pancreatic cancer tissues compared with noncancerous peritumor tissues. Depletion of GLS-AS promoted proliferation and invasion of pancreatic cancer cells both in vitro and in xenograft tumors of nude mice. GLS-AS inhibited GLS expression at the posttranscriptional level via formation of double stranded RNA with GLS pre-mRNA through ADAR/Dicer-dependent RNA interference. GLS-AS expression was transcriptionally downregulated by nutrient stress-induced Myc. Conversely, GLS-AS decreased Myc expression by impairing the GLS-mediated stability of Myc protein. These results imply a reciprocal feedback loop wherein Myc and GLS-AS regulate GLS overexpression during nutrient stress. Ectopic overexpression of GLS-AS inhibited proliferation and invasion of pancreatic cancer cells by repressing the Myc/GLS pathway. Moreover, expression of GLS-AS and GLS was inversely correlated in clinical samples of pancreatic cancer, while low expression of GLS-AS was associated with poor clinical outcomes. Collectively, our study implicates a novel lncRNA-mediated Myc/GLS pathway, which may serve as a metabolic target for pancreatic cancer therapy, and advances our understanding of the coupling role of lncRNA in nutrition stress and tumorigenesis.Significance: These findings show that lncRNA GLS-AS mediates a feedback loop of Myc and GLS, providing a potential therapeutic target for metabolic reprogramming in pancreatic cancer.Graphical Abstract: http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/canres/79/7/1398/F1.large.jpg.See related commentary by Mafra and Dias, p. 1302.

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