Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are important in cancer biology. In this study, we analyzed differentially expressed genes in CD34 + hematopoietic cells and identified a novel lncRNA, H22954, which was down-regulated in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients. In cultured AML cells and mouse xenograft models, H22954 expression inhibited cell proliferation and tumor growth, respectively. Bioinformatic analysis and RNA antisense purification assay indicated that H22954 targeted the 3' untranslated region of the BCL2 gene. In luciferase assays, H22954 expression inhibited BCL2 expression. In transfected K562 cells and mouse xenograft tumors, H22954 overexpression reduced BCL-2 protein levels and promoted cell death. In AML patients, H22954 expression inversely correlated with BCL-2 protein levels in bone marrow cells, blast cell numbers and disease prognosis. These results indicate that H22954 is a novel regulator of BCL-2 and that reduced H22954 expression may play an important role in the pathogenesis of AML.
Keywords: AML; Apoptosis; BCL-2; H22954; Long non-coding RNA.
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