American journal of cancer research

Up regulation of the long non-coding RNA NEAT1 promotes esophageal squamous cell carcinoma cell progression and correlates with poor prognosis.

PMID 26609486


Dysregulation of NEAT1 plays critical oncogenic roles and facilitates tumorigenesis on various human tumor entities. However, little information is available about the expression pattern of NEAT1 in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). The contributions of this lncRNA to tumorigenesis and progression of ESCC aslo remains unclear. By performing quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) in 96 cases of ESCC, we found that the expression of NEAT1 was higher in ESCC tissues and cells compared with the normal counterparts. Pearson analysis showed that elevated NEAT1 levels were extraordinarily correlated with the tumor size (P=0.026), lymph node metastasis (P=0.035) and clinical stage (P=0.004). Moreover, Kaplan-Meier curves with the log-rank test showed that higher expression of NEAT1 led to a significantly poorer survival and multivariate Cox proportional hazards analysis revealed that NEAT1 was an independent risk factor of overall survival (OS). We also assessed the function of NEAT1 in vitro by gain-/loss-of-function studies. Results showed that enhanced expression of NEAT1 stimulated the proliferation of ESCC cells, and promoted their ability of forming foci, migration, and invasion. Conversely, knockdown of NEAT1 showed the opposite effect. Overall, our study indicated that the inappropriate activation of NEAT1 predicts poor prognosis and has a crucial regulatory role in in ESCC. Targeting NEAT1 could be a novel therapeutic choice for treating ESCC patients.