METTL14 promotes the migration and invasion of breast cancer cells by modulating N6?methyladenosine and hsa?miR?146a?5p expression.
ABSTRACT: Breast cancer (BC) is the most frequently diagnosed cancer and the leading cause of cancer?related death among women worldwide. Evidence indicates that posttranscriptional N6?methyladenosine (m6A) modification modulates BC development. In the present study, we assessed BC and normal tissues to investigate this connection. RNA m6A levels were determined by methylation quantification assay. The effects of methyltransferase?like 14 (METTL14) gain?of?expression or co?transfection with an m6A inhibitor on cell migration and invasion abilities were determined by Transwell assays. The levels of differentially expressed (DE) miRNAs were verified by real?time quantitative PCR (RT?qPCR). Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analyses (KEGG) were performed to analyze potential function of target genes of the DE miRNAs. The effects of candidate miRNAs modulated by METTL14 on cell migration and invasion abilities were confirmed by Transwell assays. We demonstrated that m6A methyltransferase METTL14 was significantly upregulated in BC tissues compared with normal tissues. METTL14 gain? and loss?of?expression regulated m6A levels in MCF?7 and MDA?MB?231 cells. The cell function assays revealed that METTL14 overexpression enhanced the migration and invasion capacities of BC cells. Moreover, treatment with the m6A inhibitor suppressed this enhanced cell migration and invasion. Additionally, aberrant expression of METTL14 reshaped the miRNA profile in BC cell lines. The remodeled DE miRNA/mRNA network was found to be most enriched in cancer pathways, and DE miRNAs were enriched in cell adhesion terms. hsa?miR?146a?5p modulated by METTL14 promoted cell migration and invasion. METTL14 modulates m6A modification and hsa?miR?146a?5p expression, thereby affecting the migration and invasion of breast cancer cells.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Breast cancer (BC) displays striking genetic, epigenetic and phenotypic diversity. N6-methyladenosine (m6A) in mRNA has emerged as a crucial epitranscriptomic modification that controls cancer self-renewal and cell fate. However, the key enzymes of m6A expression and function in human breast carcinogenesis remain unclear. METHODS:The expression of m6A methylases (METTL3, METTL14 and WTAP) and demethylases (FTO and ALKBH5) were analyzed by using ONCOMINE and The Cancer Genome Atlas databases and in 36 pairs of BC and adjacent non-cancerous tissue. The level of m6A in BC patients was detected by ELISA, and the function of m6A was analyzed by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, colony formation assay and transwell assay. The database of bc-GenExMiner v4.0, Kaplan-Meier Plotter and cBioPortal were queried for correlation, mutation and prognosis analysis of BC. RESULTS:The m6A methylases and demethylases were dysregulated in several major malignant tumors. Specifically, the expression of all m6A methylases was reduced in BC as compared with normal controls, but the demethylase ALKBH5 was induced in ONCOMINE databases and confirmed in clinical patients. METTL14 expression was positively correlated with METTL3 expression, and both showed high expression in normal breast-like and luminal-A and -B BC. Functionally, reducing m6A expression by overexpressing METTL14 and/or knockdown of ALKBH5 could inhibit breast cell viability, colony formation and cell migration. Furthermore, Kaplan-Meier, meta-analysis and univariate Cox assay showed that the expression of m6A members including METTL3, METTL14, WTAP and FTO but not their gene mutation and amplification, was tightly associated with cancer progression and poor survival. CONCLUSIONS:Changes of m6A modulators reduced m6A may promote tumorigenesis and predict poor prognosis in BC.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the leading causes of tumor-related death worldwide, and its main cause of death is distant metastasis. Methyltransferase-like 14(METTL14), a major RNA N6-adenosine methyltransferase, is involved in tumor progression via regulating RNA function. The goal of the study is to uncover the biological function and molecular mechanism of METTL14 in CRC. METHODS:Quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), western blot and immunohistochemical (IHC) assays were employed to detect METTL14 and SOX4 in CRC cell lines and tissues. The biological functions of METTL14 were demonstrated using in vitro and in vivo experiments. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP), Transcrptomic RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq), m6A-RNA immunoprecipitation sequencing (MeRIP-Seq), RNA immunoprecipitation and luciferase reporter assays were used to explore the mechanism of METTL14 action. RESULTS:METTL14 expression was significantly downregulated in CRC and decreased METTL14 was associated with poor overall survival (OS). Both the univariate and multivariate Cox regression analysis indicated that METTL14 was an independent prognostic factor in CRC. Moreover, lysine-specific histone demethylase 5C(KDM5C)-mediated demethylation of histone H3 lysine 4 tri-methylation(H3K4me3) in the promoter of METTL14 inhibited METTL14 transcription. Functionally, we verified that METTL14 inhibited CRC cells migration, invasion and metastasis through in vitro and in vivo assays, respectively. Furthermore, we identified SRY-related high-mobility-group box 4(SOX4) as a target of METTL14-mediated m6A modification. Knockdown of METTL14 markedly abolished SOX4 mRNA m6A modification and elevated SOX4 mRNA expression. We also revealed that METTL14-mediated SOX4 mRNA degradation relied on the YTHDF2-dependent pathway. Lastly, we demonstrated that METTL14 might inhibit CRC malignant process partly through SOX4-mediated EMT process and PI3K/Akt signals. CONCLUSIONS:Decreased METTL14 facilitates tumor metastasis in CRC, suggesting that METTL14 might be a potential prognostic biomarker and effective therapeutic target for CRC.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal human cancers. N6-methyladenosine (m6A), a common eukaryotic mRNA modification, plays critical roles in both physiological and pathological processes. However, its role in pancreatic cancer remains elusive. METHODS:LC/MS was used to profile m6A levels in pancreatic cancer and normal tissues. Bioinformatics analysis, real-time PCR, immunohistochemistry, and western blotting were used to identify the role of m6A regulators in pancreatic cancer. The biological effects of methyltransferase-like 14 (METTL14), an mRNA methylase, were investigated using in vitro and in vivo models. MeRIP-Seq and RNA-Seq were used to assess the downstream targets of METTL14. RESULTS:We found that the m6A levels were elevated in approximately 70% of the pancreatic cancer samples. Furthermore, we demonstrated that METTL14 is the major enzyme that modulates m6A methylation (frequency and site of methylation). METTL14 overexpression markedly promoted pancreatic cancer cell proliferation and migration both in vitro and in vivo, via direct targeting of the downstream PERP mRNA (p53 effector related to PMP-22) in an m6A-dependent manner. Methylation of the target adenosine lead to increased PERP mRNA turnover, thus decreasing PERP (mRNA and protein) levels in pancreatic cancer cells. CONCLUSIONS:Our data suggest that the upregulation of METTL14 leads to the decrease of PERP levels via m6A modification, promoting the growth and metastasis of pancreatic cancer; therefore METTL14 is a potential therapeutic target for its treatment.
Project description:The importance of RNA methylation in biological processes is an emerging focus of investigation. We report that altering m6A levels by silencing either N 6-adenosine methyltransferase METTL14 (methyltransferase-like 14) or demethylase ALKBH5 (ALKB homolog 5) inhibits cancer growth and invasion. METTL14/ALKBH5 mediate their protumorigenic function by regulating m6A levels of key epithelial-mesenchymal transition and angiogenesis-associated transcripts, including transforming growth factor-? signaling pathway genes. Using MeRIP-seq (methylated RNA immunoprecipitation sequencing) analysis and functional studies, we find that these target genes are particularly sensitive to changes in m6A modifications, as altered m6A status leads to aberrant expression of these genes, resulting in inappropriate cell cycle progression and evasion of apoptosis. Our results reveal that METTL14 and ALKBH5 determine the m6A status of target genes by controlling each other's expression and by inhibiting m6A reader YTHDF3 (YTH N 6-methyladenosine RNA binding protein 3), which blocks RNA demethylase activity. Furthermore, we show that ALKBH5/METTL14 constitute a positive feedback loop with RNA stability factor HuR to regulate the stability of target transcripts. We discover that hypoxia alters the level/activity of writers, erasers, and readers, leading to decreased m6A and consequently increased expression of target transcripts in cancer cells. This study unveils a previously undefined role for m6A in cancer and shows that the collaboration among writers-erasers-readers sets up the m6A threshold to ensure the stability of progrowth/proliferation-specific genes, and protumorigenic stimulus, such as hypoxia, perturbs that m6A threshold, leading to uncontrolled expression/activity of those genes, resulting in tumor growth, angiogenesis, and progression.
Project description:The kidney renal clear cell carcinoma (KIRC) with poor prognosis is the main histological subtype of the renal cell carcinoma, accounting for 80-90% of patients. Currently, the N6-methyladenosine (m6A) epitranscriptional modification draws much attention. The m6A RNA modification, the most plentiful internal modification of mRNAs and noncoding RNAs in the majority of eukaryotes, regulates mRNAs at different levels and is involved in disease occurrence and progression. The GTExPortal and TCGAportal were applied to investigate the METTL14 mRNA expression in different tissues and KIRC stages. The Human Protein Atlas was used to verify the location of METTL14 in KIRC tissues. The main microRNAs (miRNAs) related to KIRC were analyzed using OncoLnc and starBase, while corresponding circular RNAs (circRNAs) interacting with miRNAs were predicted via circBank; then, the METTL14-miRNA-circRNA interaction network was established. The level of methyltransferase-like 14 (METTL14) mRNA was significantly lower in KIRC tissues compared with normal kidney tissues, which was relative to clinical and pathological stages. circRNAs may regulate METTL14 mRNA as miRNAs sponge to affect the KIRC progression. METTL14 mRNA is likely to regulate PTEN mRNA expression via changing its m6A RNA modification level. METTL14 mRNA expression negatively correlated with the KIRC stages and positively correlated with KIRC patients' overall survival, which has great potential to serve as a clinical biomarker in KIRC.
Project description:The abnormal m6A modification caused by m6A modulators is a common feature of various tumors; however, little is known about which m6A modulator plays the most important role in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). In this study, when analyzing the influence of m6A modulators (METTL3, METTL14, WTAP, FTO, and ALKBH5) on the prognosis of breast cancer, especially in TNBC using several on-line databases, methyltransferase-like 3 (METTL3) was found to have low expression in breast cancer, and was closely associated with short-distance-metastasis-free survival in TNBC. Further investigation showed that knockdown of METTL3 could enhance the ability of migration, invasion, and adhesion by decreasing m6A level in TNBC cell lines. Collagen type III alpha 1 chain (COL3A1) was identified and verified as a target gene of METTL3. METTL3 could down-regulate the expression of COL3A1 by increasing its m6A methylation, ultimately inhibiting the metastasis of TNBC cells. Finally, with immunohistochemistry staining in breast cancer tissues, it was proved that METTL3 expression was negatively correlated with COL3A1 in TNBC, but not in non-TNBC. This study demonstrated the potential mechanism of m6A modification in metastasis and provided potential targets for treatment in TNBC.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Accumulating evidence has revealed the critical roles of N6-methyladenosine (m6A) modification of mRNA in various cancers. However, the biological function and regulation of m6A in bladder cancer (BC) are not yet fully understood. METHODS:We performed cell phenotype analysis and established in vivo mouse xenograft models to assess the effects of m6A-modified ITGA6 on BC growth and progression. Methylated RNA immunoprecipitation (MeRIP), RNA immunoprecipitation and luciferase reporter and mutagenesis assays were used to define the mechanism of m6A-modified ITGA6. Immunohistochemical analysis was performed to assess the correlation between METTL3 and ITGA6 expression in bladder cancer patients. FINDINGS:We show that the m6A writer METTL3 and eraser ALKBH5 altered cell adhesion by regulating ITGA6 expression in bladder cancer cells. Moreover, upregulation of ITGA6 is correlated with the increase in METTL3 expression in human BC tissues, and higher expression of ITGA6 in patients indicates a lower survival rate. Mechanistically, m6A is highly enriched within the ITGA6 transcripts, and increased m6A methylations of the ITGA6 mRNA 3'UTR promotes the translation of ITGA6 mRNA via binding of the m6A readers YTHDF1 and YTHDF3. Inhibition of ITGA6 results in decreased growth and progression of bladder cancer cells in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, overexpression of ITGA6 in METTL3-depleted cells partially restores the BC adhesion, migration and invasion phenotypes. INTERPRETATION:Our results demonstrate an oncogenic role of m6A-modified ITGA6 and show its regulatory mechanisms in BC development and progression, thus identifying a potential therapeutic target for BC. FUND: This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (81772699, 81472999).
Project description:The mRNA modification N6-methyladenosine (m6A) is involved in many post-transcriptional regulatory processes including mRNA stability and translational efficiency. However, it is also imperative to correlate these processes with phenotypic outputs during cancer progression. Here we report that m6A levels are significantly decreased in genetically-defined immortalized and oncogenically-transformed human mammary epithelial cells (HMECs), as compared with their primary cell predecessor. Furthermore, the m6A methyltransferase (METTL3) is decreased and the demethylase (ALKBH5) is increased in the immortalized and transformed cell lines, providing a possible mechanism for this basal change in m6A levels. Although the immortalized and transformed cells showed lower m6A levels than their primary parental cell line, overexpression of METTL3 and METTL14, or ALKBH5 knockdown to increase m6A levels in transformed cells increased proliferation and migration. Remarkably, these treatments had little effect on the immortalized cells. Together, these results suggest that m6A modification may be downregulated in immortalized cells as a brake against malignant progression. Finally, we found that m6A levels in the immortalized and transformed cells increased in response to hypoxia without corresponding changes in METTL3, METTL14 or ALKBH5 expression, suggesting a novel pathway for regulation of m6A levels under stress.
Project description:N6-methyladenosine (m6A) modifications can be found in eukaryotic messenger RNA (mRNA), long non-coding RNA (lncRNA), and microRNA (miRNA). Several studies have demonstrated a close relationship between m6A modifications and cancer cells. Methyltransferase-like enzyme 3 (METTL3) and methyltransferase-like enzyme 14 (METTL14) are two major enzymes involved in m6A modifications that play vital roles in various cancers. However, the roles and regulatory mechanisms of METTL3 and METTL14 in urological cancers are largely unknown. In this review, we summarize the current research results for METTL3 and METTL14 and identify potential pathways involving these enzymes in kidney, bladder, prostate, and testicular cancer. We found that METTL3 and METTL14 have different expression patterns in four types of urological cancers. METTL3 is highly expressed in bladder and prostate cancer and plays an oncogenic role on cancer cells; however, its expression and role are opposite in kidney cancer. METTL14 is expressed at low levels in kidney and bladder cancer, where it has a tumor suppressive role. Low METTL3 or METTL14 expression in cancer cells negatively regulates cell growth-related pathways (e.g., mTOR, EMT, and P2XR6) but positively regulates cell death-related pathways (e.g., P53, PTEN, and Notch1). When METTL3 is highly expressed, it positively regulates the NF-kB and SHH-GL1pathways but negatively regulates PTEN. These results suggest that although METTL3 and METTL14 have different expression levels and regulatory mechanisms in urological cancers, they control cancer cell fate via cell growth- and cell death-related pathways. These findings suggest that m6A modification may be a potential new therapeutic target in urological cancer.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>N6-methyladenosine (m6A), the most abundant chemical modification on eukaryotic messenger RNA (mRNA), is modulated by three class of regulators namely "writers," "erasers," and "readers." Increasing studies have shown that aberrant expression of m6A regulators plays broad roles in tumorigenesis and progression. However, it is largely unknown regarding the expression regulation for RNA m6A regulators in human cancers.<h4>Results</h4>Here we characterized the expression profiles of RNA m6A regulators in 13 cancer types with The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) data. We showed that <i>METTL14</i>, <i>FTO</i>, and <i>ALKBH5</i> were down-regulated in most cancers, whereas <i>YTHDF1</i> and <i>IGF2BP3</i> were up-regulated in 12 cancer types except for thyroid carcinoma (THCA). Survival analysis further revealed that low expression of several m6A regulators displayed longer overall survival times. Then, we analyzed microRNA (miRNA)-regulated and DNA methylation-regulated expression changes of m6A regulators in pan-cancer. In total, we identified 158 miRNAs and 58 DNA methylation probes (DMPs) involved in expression regulation for RNA m6A regulators. Furthermore, we assessed the survival significance of those regulatory pairs. Among them, 10 miRNAs and 7 DMPs may promote cancer initiation and progression; conversely, 3 miRNA/mRNA pairs in kidney renal clear cell carcinoma (KIRC) may exert tumor-suppressor function. These findings are indicative of their potential prognostic values. Finally, we validated two of those miRNA/mRNA pairs (hsa-miR-1307-3p/<i>METTL14</i> and hsa-miR-204-5p/<i>IGF2BP3</i>) that could serve a critical role for potential clinical application in KIRC patients.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our findings highlighted the importance of upstream regulation (miRNA and DNA methylation) governing m6A regulators' expression in pan-cancer. As a result, we identified several informative regulatory pairs for prognostic stratification. Thus, our study provides new insights into molecular mechanisms of m6A modification in human cancers.