LncRNA as Biomarkers in Disease Diagnosis and Prognosis



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LncRNA as Biomarkers in Disease Diagnosis and Prognosis

97% of the human genome is non-protein-coding and consists of introns, regulatory sequences and noncoding RNAs. Long noncoding RNA (lncRNA), a type of noncoding RNA, is longer than 200 nucleotide transcripts in length and has a variety of biological functions. Based on their genomic localization according to the neighboring protein-coding gene, lncRNAs can be divided into four types: intronic lncRNAs, intergenic lncRNAs, sense lncRNAs and antisense lncRNAs. LncRNAs are emerging as new players in disease biology, due to their involvement in many biological processes such as embryogenesis, imprinting, epigenetic regulation, transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation. Because of their tissue and cell specificity and functional diversity, a number of them were shown to be involved in tumorigenesis and related to patients' prognosis in cancer research.

LncRNA as Biomarkers in Disease Diagnosis and PrognosisFigure 1. Long noncoding RNAs characteristics. (Gu Y, et al., 2015)

LncRNAs in Cancer Diagnosis

LncRNAs have great potentials for being considered as biomarkers because they are more stable, highly cell/tissue specific, and easy to detect in body fluids (i.e., saliva, urine, blood). Besides, lncRNAs are highly dysregulated in several cancer types and exhibit high degree of tissue- and disease-specificity, which makes them an ideal candidate for cancer diagnosis.

Table 1. A list of lncRNAs with potential in cancer diagnosis

LncRNAExpressionSourceCancer type
PCA3UrineProstate cancer
MD-mini-RNAPlasmaProstate cancer
MALAT1UrineProstate cancer
FR0348383UrineProstate cancer
AK024556UrineProstate cancer
XLOC_007697UrineProstate cancer
LOC100287482UrineProstate cancer
XLOC_005327UrineProstate cancer
XLOC_008559UrineProstate cancer
XLOC_009911UrineProstate cancer
SncmtRNAUrineBladder cancer
AsncmtRNAUrineBladder cancer
UCA1UrineTransitional cell carcinoma
UCA1UrineTransitional cell carcinoma
UCA1UrineUrothelial bladder carcinoma
UCA1TumorRenal cell carcinoma
UCA1TumorOral squamous cell carcinoma
NEAT1TumorOral squamous cell carcinoma
HOTAIRTumorOral squamous cell carcinoma
HOTAIRSalivaOral squamous cell carcinoma
HOTAIRUrinary exosomesUrothelial bladder carcinoma
Multiple↑↓Bone marrowAcute myeloid leukemia
MEG3Bone marrowMultiple myeloma
MEG3TumorOral squamous cell carcinoma
XISTSerumNon-small cell lung cancer
PVT1Tumor, Gastric juiceGastric cancer
PCAT1TumorEsophageal squamous cell carcinoma

LncRNAs in Cancer Prognosis

Prognosis is an assessment or prediction of the probable course of a disease and the chances of recovery or survival from the disease. Factors such as tumor type, its location in the body, tumor size, tumor grade, patient's age and patient's response to treatment affect prognosis. Both upregulation and downregulation in lncRNAs expression in cancer patients associate with tumor grade and thus could be used as a prognostic marker.

Table 2. A list of lncRNAs with potential in cancer prognosis

LncRNAExpressionSourceCancer typeAssociation
CCAT1TumorColon cancerLymph node metastasis
CCAT1TumorGall bladder cancerTumor-nodes-metastasis
MALAT1TumorCervical cancerVascular invasion
MALAT1↑↓Bone marrowMultiple myelomaProgression-free survival
MALAT1TumorBreast cancerRelapse-free survival
MultipleComputationalBreast cancerOverall survival
SNHG3TumorHepatocellular carcinomaSurvival
PANDARTumorHepatocellular carcinomaSurvival, recurrence
hPVT1TumorHepatocellular carcinomaSurvival
HOTAIRTumorHepatocellular carcinomaLymph node metastasis
HOTAIRTumorGall bladder cancerLymph node metastasis
HOTAIRBone marrowAcute myeloid leukemiaNCCN high risk group
HOTAIRTumorColon cancerSurvival
HOTAIRTumorBreast cancerInvasive carcinoma
LINC00472TumorBreast cancerRelapse
H19TumorBreast cancerInvasive carcinoma
KCNQ101TTumorBreast cancerInvasive carcinoma
lncRNA-ATBTumorColorectal cancerInvasion, lymph node metastasis
SChLAP1TumorProstate cancerMetastasis
HIF1A-AS2TumorTriple negative breast cancerDrug resistance
NEAT1TumorGliomaTumor size, overall survival
AI364715TumorGastric cancerTumor size
GACAT2TumorGastric cancerTumor size, tumor-nodes-metastasis
PCAT29TumorProstate cancerSurvival
AC026166.2-001TumorLarynx squamous cell carcinomaSurvival
lncRNA-LETTumorGall bladder cancerSurvival
MEG3MetBone marrowMultiple myelomaTumor stage
PCAT1TumorEsophageal squamous cell carcinomaInvasion, lymph node metastasis


  1. Fattahi S, et al. LncRNAs as potential diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers in gastric cancer: a novel approach to personalized medicine. Journal of Cellular Physiology, 2020, 235(4): 3189-3206.
  2. Gu Y, et al. LncRNAs: emerging biomarkers in gastric cancer. Future oncology, 2015, 11(17): 2427-2441.
  3. Tripathi M K, et al. Role of lncRNAs in ovarian cancer: defining new biomarkers for therapeutic purposes. Drug discovery today, 2018, 23(9): 1635-1643.
  4. Chandra Gupta S, Nandan Tripathi Y. Potential of long non-coding RNAs in cancer patients: From biomarkers to therapeutic targets. International journal of cancer, 2017, 140(9): 1955-1967.
For research use only. Not intended for any clinical use.
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