The lncRNA Fer1L4 is an adverse prognostic parameter in clear-cell renal-cell carcinoma.

Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNA) are involved in oncogenesis and tumor progression in various tumor entities. At present, little is known about the role in tumor biology of the lncRNA Fer-1 like family member 4 (Fer1L4) in clear-cell renal-cell carcinoma (ccRCC). The aim of this study is to evaluate the expression of Fer1L4 in patients with ccRCC, its association with clinicopathological parameters, and value as prognostic biomarker.

The expression of Fer1L4 was analyzed in the TCGA ccRCC cohort (n = 603; ccRCC n = 522, normal n = 81) and subsequently validated by quantitative real-time PCR in an independent cohort (n = 103, ccRCC n = 69, normal n = 34). Expression profiles were statistically correlated with clinicopathological and survival data.

Fer1L4 lncRNA is overexpressed in ccRCC compared to adjacent normal tissues. Increased expression significantly correlates with tumor aggressiveness: high expression levels of Fer1L4 RNA were found in higher grade, higher stage, and metastatic tumors. Furthermore, Fer1L4 overexpression is an independent prognostic factor for overall, cancer-specific, and progression-free survival of patients with ccRCC.

Fer1L4 expression significantly correlates with aspects of tumor aggressiveness. Based on this impact on tumor progression and its influence as an independent prognostic factor, Fer1L4 appears to exert properties as an oncogene in ccRCC. As a prognostic tissue biomarker, further functional investigations are warranted to investigate Fer1L4 as a potential therapeutic target.

Clinical & translational oncology : official publication of the Federation of Spanish Oncology Societies and of the National Cancer Institute of Mexico. 2020 Jan 21 [Epub ahead of print]

A Cox, Y Tolkach, G Kristiansen, M Ritter, J Ellinger

Department of Urology, University Hospital Bonn, Bonn, Germany. ., Institute of Pathology, University Hospital Bonn, Bonn, Germany., Department of Urology, University Hospital Bonn, Bonn, Germany.