Circ_0020460 drives tumorigenesis in cervical cancer through miR-485-3p sponging

Discov Oncol. 2024 Mar 27;15(1):88. doi: 10.1007/s12672-024-00933-1.


Deregulation of circular RNAs (circRNAs) is widely recognized in cancer progression. Our study aims to investigate the role of circ_0020460 in the development of cervical cancer (CC) and its potential mechanism of action. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and western blot assays were used to detect the expression levels of circ_0020460, miR-485-3p and C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 1 (CXCL1). The roles of circ_0020460 on cell proliferation, cell migration, cell invasion, cell apoptosis, and angiogenesis were investigated using cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8) and Ethynyl deoxyuridine (Edu) assay, wound healing assay, transwell assay, flow cytometry assay, and tube formation assay, respectively. The putative relationship predicted by bioinformatics analysis was verified by dual-luciferase reporter assay and RNA immunoprecipitation (RIP) assay. Xenograft models were constructed to explore the role of circ_0020460 in vivo. The expression of circ_0020460 and CXCL1 expression were increased, while miR-485-3p expression was declined in CC tissues and cells. Circ_0020460 knockdown suppressed CC cell proliferation, cell migration, cell invasion, angiogenesis, and promoted cell apoptosis. Circ_0020460 functioned as a miR-485-3p sponge to inhibit miR-485-3p level, and the anti-cancer effects mediated by circ_0020460 knockdown were reversed by miR-485-3p inhibitor. MiR-485-3p bound to CXCL1 3' untranslated region (3'UTR) to degrade CXCL1 expression, and the anti-cancer effects of miR-485-3p restoration were impaired by CXCL1 overexpression. Circ_0020460 downregulation inhibited CC xenograft tumor growth. These results suggest that circ_0020460 promoted the malignant behavior of CC cells by modulating the miR-485-3p/CXCL1 axis.

Keywords: CXCL1; Cervical cancer; Circ_0020460; miR-485-3p.