Emerging contribution of pancrnas in cancer

Neri Mercatelli, Ramona Palombo, Maria Paola Paronetto

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


“Cancer” includes a heterogeneous group of diseases characterized by abnormal growth beyond natural boundaries. Neoplastic transformation of cells is orchestrated by multiple molecular players, including oncogenic transcription factors, epigenetic modifiers, RNA binding proteins, and coding and noncoding transcripts. The use of computational methods for global and quantitative analysis of RNA processing regulation provides new insights into the genomic and epigenomic features of the cancer transcriptome. In particular, noncoding RNAs are emerging as key molecular players in oncogenesis. Among them, the promoter-associated noncoding RNAs (pancRNAs) are noncoding transcripts acting in cis to regulate their host genes, including tumor suppressors and oncogenes. In this review, we will illustrate the role played by pancRNAs in cancer biology and will discuss the latest findings that connect pancRNAs with cancer risk and progression. The molecular mechanisms involved in the function of pancRNAs may open the path to novel therapeutic opportunities, thus expanding the repertoire of targets to be tested as anticancer agents in the near future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2035
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020


  • Cancer 2
  • Cell cycle 4
  • PancRNA 1
  • RNA binding proteins (RBPs) 3

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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