Cancer Lett 2019 Apr 23;447:33-40. Epub 2019 Jan 23.
Department of Radiation Oncology, Fujian Cancer Hospital, Fujian Medical University Cancer Hospital, Fuzhou, China; Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Translational Cancer Medicine, China. Electronic address:
Based on analysis of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) BART microRNA expression profiles, we previously reported that EBV-encoded miR-BART13 is upregulated in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) plasma specimens. However, the effects and molecular mechanisms of miR-BART13 in NPC remain largely unknown. We found that miR-BART13 was significantly upregulated in NPC tissue specimens. Ectopic expression of miR-BART13 promoted NPC cell proliferation, epithelial mesenchymal transition, and metastasis in vitro, and facilitated xenograft tumor growth and lung metastasis in vivo. Molecularly, NF-κB inhibitor interacting Ras-like 2 (NKIRAS2), a negative regulator of the NF-κB signaling, was identified to be a direct target of miR-BART13 in NPC cells, and NKIRAS2 mRNA and protein expression was inversely correlated with miR-BART13 in NPC tissues, respecitvely. Furthermore, the NF-κB signaling pathway was activated by miR-BART13. By rescued experiments, reconstitution of NKIRAS2 expression abrogated all the phenotypes upregulated by miR-BART13, and attenuated activity of NF-κB signaling pathway activated by miR-BART13 in NPC cells. Our findings indicated the newly identified miR-BART13/NKIRAS2/NF-κB signaling axis may provide further insights into better understanding of NPC initiation and development, and targeting of this pathway could be further studied as a therapeutic strategy for NPC patients.