Is Evolutionary Conservation a Useful Predictor for Cancer Long Noncoding RNAs? Insights from the Cancer LncRNA Census 3

Noncoding RNA. 2022 Dec 7;8(6):82. doi: 10.3390/ncrna8060082.


Evolutionary conservation is a measure of gene functionality that is widely used to prioritise long noncoding RNAs (lncRNA) in cancer research. Intriguingly, while updating our Cancer LncRNA Census (CLC), we observed an inverse relationship between year of discovery and evolutionary conservation. This observation is specific to cancer over other diseases, implying a sampling bias in the selection of lncRNA candidates and casting doubt on the value of evolutionary metrics for the prioritisation of cancer-related lncRNAs.

Keywords: cancer; conservation; long noncoding RNA.