A new long non-coding RNA involved in lung cancer proliferation


5 mayo 2020

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iDIFFER researchers discover a new gene that enhances cell multiplication in squamous cell carcinoma of the lung, the most common lung cancer in Spain. The study, led by Dr. M. Huarte (CIMA, Pamplona), shows that this gene, called SWINGN, is expressed in some tumor cells and its action causes these cells to become more aggressive. The research is published in the scientific journal Nature Communications.

The iDIFFER lab led by Dra. Maite Huarte (link to ) observed that SWINGN induces the activation of GAS6, an important oncogene overexpressed in many cancers. They also detected a positive correlation between the expression of SWINGN and GAS6, mainly in squamous carcinoma of the lung, and invasive breast carcinoma. SWINGN not only activates the expression of GAS6, but also of a group of genes that together promote the proliferation of tumor cells. The authors conclude that coordinated regulation of this gene set by SWINGN uncovers a gene expression network that contributes to the transformed phenotype of cancer cells. In tumors such as lung squamous cancers, where the SWINGN-SWI/SNF axis is active, SWINGN may represent an interesting novel therapeutic target.

Original publication:

A lncRNA-SWI/SNF complex crosstalk controls transcriptional activation at specific promoter regions

Elena Grossi, Ivan Raimondi, Enrique Goñi, Jovanna González, Francesco P. Marchese, Vicente Chapaprieta, José I. Martín-Subero, Shuling Guo & Maite Huarte

Nature Communications volume 11, Article number: 936 (2020)

The SWING locus in human chromosome 13. See Grossi et al. Nature Communications.