Multiple myeloma (MM) is a clonal proliferation of bone marrow plasma cells characterized by highly heterogeneous genetic background and clinical course, whose pathogenesis remains largely unknown. Long ncRNAs (lncRNAs) are a large class of non-protein-coding RNA, involved in many physiological cellular and genomic processes as well as in carcinogenesis and tumor evolution. Although still in its infancy, the role of lncRNAs in MM is progressively expanding. Besides studies on selected candidates, lncRNAs expression at genome-wide transcriptome level is confined to microarray technologies, thus investigating a limited collection of transcripts. In the present study investigating a cohort of 30 MM patients, a deep RNA-sequencing analysis overwhelmed previous array studies and allowed the most accurate definition of lncRNA transcripts structure and expression, ultimately providing a comprehensive catalogue of lncRNAs specifically associated with the main MM molecular subgroups and genetic alterations. Despite the small number of analyzed samples, the high accuracy of RNA-sequencing approach for complex transcriptome processing led to the identification of 391 deregulated lncRNAs, 67% of which were also detectable and validated by whole-transcript microarrays. In addition, we identified a list of lncRNAs, with potential relevance in MM, co-expressed and in close proximity to genes that might undergo a cis-regulatory relationship.
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