Taiwan scientists identify noncoding RNA relevant to lung cancer

Source: Xinhua| 2020-02-20 21:35:04|Editor: huaxia

TAIPEI, Feb. 20 (Xinhua) -- A team of biologists from Taiwan announced Thursday that they identified one noncoding RNA named "PTTG3P" that is highly relevant to the growth of lung adenocarcinoma tumors and patients' resistance to chemotherapy drugs.

The research team with the Institute of Biomedical Sciences of Academia Sinica in Taiwan found that the overexpression of PTTG3P in cells of lung adenocarcinoma patients facilitates the growth of tumors and vice versa, said Shih Jou-ho, a postdoctoral researcher with the institute and a key member of the team.

They also proved that patients with higher expression of PTTG3P are more likely to have a stronger resistance to treatment of chemotherapy drugs such as Paclitaxel and Cisplatin, Shih said.

The research finding points to new directions for the treatment of lung adenocarcinoma, a major lung cancer, said Jou Yuh-shan, chief of the research team.

"PTTG3P can be an indicator of patients' conditions and serve as a reference for doctors to adjust therapy," he said. "A certain medicine can also be developed to suppress the expression of PTTG3P so as to reduce drug resistance of the patients, though much more efforts should be made to bring the findings in the lab to clinical application."

The research also aims to develop a research model to help biologists explore disease-associated and cancer-associated researches of noncoding RNAs, he added.

"Compared with the research on coding RNAs, much less attention has gone to noncoding RNAs, which were generally considered as junk genes due to lack of the potential of protein translation. However, more and more studies suggested the importance of noncoding RNAs in disease progression," Jou said.

The research has tried to develop an effective way to systematically identify disease-associated noncoding RNAs and explore their functions for clinical interventions, he said.

The research paper was published in Nucleic Acids Research in December 2019.