Circular RNAs (circRNAs), a novel class of noncoding RNAs, have been shown to play critical regulatory roles in clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC). Metastasis is the main contributor to the poor prognosis of patients with ccRCC. However, the role of circRNAs in ccRCC metastasis has not been fully elucidated. In this study, microarray and RNA-seq analyses revealed that circPSD3 (hsa_circ_0002111) was dramatically downregulated in ccRCC tissues compared to adjacent nontumor tissues. A qRT-PCR analysis performed on our ccRCC cohorts confirmed the downregulation of circPSD3 in ccRCC tissues and further suggested that a low level of circPSD3 expression was associated with tumor metastasis in patients with ccRCC. Based on the results of functional studies, circPSD3 significantly inhibited cell migration, invasion, and the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in vitro and blocked pulmonary metastasis in vivo. Mechanistically, circPSD3 functioned as a competing endogenous RNA for microRNA 25-3p (miR-25-3p) to regulate F-box and WD repeat domain-containing 7 (FBXW7) expression. Further verification indicated that circPSD3 overexpression restrained an EMT-like phenotype in cells, while miR-25-3p partially rescued these effects. In summary, circPSD3 inhibits tumor metastasis by repressing the miR-25-3p/FBXW7-EMT axis and might be developed as a potential diagnostic and therapeutic target for ccRCC.
Copyright © 2022 Xuexia Xie et al.