Reduced m6A mRNA methylation is correlated with the progression of human cervical cancer

Oncotarget. 2017 Oct 24;8(58):98918-98930. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.22041. eCollection 2017 Nov 17.


The m6A mRNA methylation involves in mRNA splicing, degradation and translation. Recent studies have revealed that reduced m6A mRNA methylation might promote cancer development. However, the role of m6A mRNA methylation in cervical cancer development remains unknown. Therefore, we investigated the role of m6A methylation in cervical cancer in the current study. We first evaluated the m6A mRNA methylation level in 286 pairs of cervical cancer samples and their adjacent normal tissues by dot blot assay. Then the role of m6A on patient survival rates and cervical cancer progression were assessed. The m6A level was significantly reduced in the cervical cancer when comparing with the adjacent normal tissue. The m6A level reduction was significantly correlated with the FIGO stage, tumor size, differentiation, lymph invasion and cancer recurrence. It was also shown to be an independent prognostic indicator of disease-free survival and overall survival for patients with cervical cancer. Reducing m6A level via manipulating the m6A regulators expression promoted cervical cancer cell proliferation. And increasing m6A level significantly suppressed tumor development both in vitro and in vivo. Our results showed that the reduced m6A level is tightly associated with cervical cancer development and m6A mRNA methylation might be a potential therapeutic target in cervical cancer.

Keywords: cancer; cervical cancer; m6A RNA methylation.