Research progress of circRNA in malignant tumour metabolic reprogramming

RNA Biol. 2023 Jan;20(1):641-651. doi: 10.1080/15476286.2023.2247877.


Cancer is a multi-factor systemic malignant disease, which has seriously threatened human health and created a heavy burden on the world economy. Metabolic reprogramming, one of the important signs of malignant tumours, provides necessary nutrition for tumorigenesis and cancer development; thus, it has recently become a research hot spot, even though the metabolic mechanism is quite intricate. Circular RNA (circRNA) affects cancer cell metabolism through various molecular mechanisms, playing an important role in promoting or suppressing cancer. Because of the structure characteristics, circRNA is quite stable, and can be utilized as biomarkers. In this review, we analysed and summarized the characteristics and biological functions of circRNA and comprehensively reviewed and discussed the important role of circRNA in cancer metabolic reprogramming. This review will provide new ideas for developing new anti-cancer therapeutic targets, mining cancer diagnostic and prognostic markers, and will provide guidance for other researchers to design circRNA-related experiments and develop anti-tumour drugs.

Keywords: CircRNA; cancer metabolic reprogramming; glycolysis; malignant tumour; microRNA (MiRNA).

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Carcinogenesis / genetics
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms* / genetics
  • RNA, Circular* / genetics


  • RNA, Circular

Grants and funding

This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 81960449); Inner Mongolia Natural Science Foundation (No.2020MS08157); and Inner Mongolian People’s Hospital Science Foundation (No.2022YN15).