LIMK2 acts as an oncogene in bladder cancer and its functional SNP in the microRNA-135a binding site affects bladder cancer risk

LIM kinases modulate multiple aspects of cancer development, including cell proliferation and survival. As the mechanisms of LIMK-associated tumorigenesis are still unclear, we analyzed the tumorigenic functions of LIM kinase 2 (LIMK2) in human bladder cancer (BC) and explored whether the newly identified LIMK2 3'-UTR SNP rs2073859 (G-to-A allele) is correlated with clinical features. Expression levels of LIMK2 in 38 human BC tissues and 8 cell lines were examined using quantitative real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry. LIMK2 was overexpressed in most BC tissues (27/38, 71%) and BC-derived cell lines (6/8), and was more frequently overexpessed in high-grade than low-grade BC (80% vs. 47%). The effects of LIMK2 on BC cell proliferation, survival, and migration, were studied by overexpression and RNA interference approaches in vitro and in vivo. LIMK2 overexpression promoted proliferation, migration, and invasion of BC cells, while LIMK2 depletion inhibited cell invasion and viability, and induced growth arrest in vitro and in vivo. PCR-RFLP was used to genotype LIMK2 SNP rs2073859 and multivariate logistic regression applied to assess the relationship between allele frequency and clinical features in 139 BC patients. Functional analyses localized SNP rs2073859 within the microRNA-135a seed-binding region and revealed significantly lower LIMK2 G allele expression. The frequency of A genotypes (AG+AA) was higher in the BC group than normal controls and correlated with risks of high-grade and high-stage BC. In conclusion, LIMK2 may function as an oncogene in human BC, while allele-specific regulation by microRNA-135a may influence disease risk. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

International journal of cancer. 2018 Jul 14 [Epub ahead of print]

Wei Wang, Chenglin Yang, Haibo Nie, Xiaofu Qiu, Lianbo Zhang, Yuansong Xiao, Wuer Zhou, Qinsong Zeng, Xiaoming Zhang, Yigao Wu, Jun Liu, Min Ying

Department of Urology, Guangzhou General Hospital of Guangzhou Military Command, Guangzhou, China., Department of Urology, Guangdong NO.2 Provincial People's Hospital, Guangzhou, China., Department of Plastic Surgery, China-Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China.

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