Significance of microRNAs in lung cancer

Our aim is to investigate the importance of microRNAs in radio- and chemotherapy response of lung cancer.

MicroRNAs have been shown to be involved in regulation of different cellular processes important for tumor cell survival and death. A role of microRNAs in modulation of radio-and chemotherapy of different tumors has been shown in many studies, but their role in driving lung cancer therapy response still remains unclear. In our project, we therefore are studying this issue using genomic and molecular biology techniques in lung cancer cell lines in vitro, as well as in clinical material from lung cancer patients.

As a result of these studies we recently showed that miRNA-214 is linked to radiotherapy response of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cells. We found that inhibition of miRNA-214 expression sensitized for radiotherapy by altering multiple forms of cell death. In another study, we demonstrated that miRNA-214 also influences the invasive potential of NSCLC likely by influencing several metastasis driving signaling cascades among them PAPP-A. The continued research aims to understand if expression of miRNA-214 and/or its targets can be used as biomarkers to predict metastasis of NSCLC in vivo. For this purpose, we are using human NSCLC tumor material as well as serum samples with corresponding clinical data.


miRNA-214 is related to invasiveness of human non-small cell lung cancer and directly regulates alpha protein kinase 2 expression.
Salim H, Arvanitis A, de Petris L, Kanter L, Hååg P, Zovko A, et al
Genes Chromosomes Cancer 2013 Oct;52(10):895-911

miRNA-214 modulates radiotherapy response of non-small cell lung cancer cells through regulation of p38MAPK, apoptosis and senescence.
Salim H, Akbar NS, Zong D, Vaculova AH, Lewensohn R, Moshfegh A, et al
Br. J. Cancer 2012 Oct;107(8):1361-73