Adrenocortical tumors have a distinct, long, non-coding RNA expression profile and LINC00271 is downregulated in malignancy

Surgery. 2020 Jan;167(1):224-232. doi: 10.1016/j.surg.2019.04.067. Epub 2019 Sep 13.


Background: Adrenocortical carcinoma is an aggressive malignancy with a low but variable overall survival rate. The role of in adrenocortical carcinoma is poorly understood. Thus, in this study we performed long noncoding RNA expression profiling in adrenocortical carcinomas, adrenocortical adenomas, and normal adrenal cortex.

Methods: Long noncoding RNA expression profile using Human LncRNA/mRNA Expression Microarray V3.0 (Arraystar, Inc, Rockville, MD) was analyzed in samples from 11 adrenocortical adenomas, 9 adrenocortical carcinomas, and 5 normal adrenal cortex. Differentially expressed long noncoding RNAs were validated using TaqMan, real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction with additional samples. The dataset from the adrenocortical carcinoma Cancer Genome Atlas Programproject was used to evaluate the prognostic utility of long noncoding RNAs.

Results: Unsupervised hierarchical clustering showed distinct clustering of adrenocortical carcinoma samples compared with normal adrenal cortex and adrenocortical adenoma samples by long noncoding RNA expression profiles. A total of 874 long noncoding RNAs were differentially expressed between adrenocortical carcinoma and normal adrenal cortex. LINC00271 expression level was associated with prognosis, patients with low LINC00271 expression survived a shorter time than patients with high LINC00271 expression. Low LINC00271 expression was positively associated with WNT signaling, cell cycle, and chromosome segregation pathways.

Conclusion: Adrenocortical carcinoma has a distinct long noncoding RNA expression profile. LINC00271 is downregulated in adrenocortical carcinoma and appears to be involved in biologic pathways commonly dysregulated in adrenocortical carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex / pathology
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / mortality
  • Adrenal Cortex Neoplasms / pathology
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / genetics*
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / mortality
  • Adrenocortical Carcinoma / pathology
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism*
  • Cell Cycle / genetics
  • Chromosome Segregation / genetics
  • DNA Copy Number Variations
  • Down-Regulation
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • RNA, Long Noncoding / metabolism*
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Time Factors
  • Wnt Signaling Pathway / genetics


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • RNA, Long Noncoding