LncRNA ZEB2-AS1 contributes to the tumorigenesis of gastric cancer via activating the Wnt/β-catenin pathway

  • Feixia Wang
  • Wu Zhu
  • Ruili Yang
  • Wanhua Xie
  • Daojun WangEmail author


Studies have shown that long noncoding RNA Zinc finger E-box-binding homeobox 2 antisense RNA 1 (ZEB2-AS1) is involved in the progression of lung cancer, bladder cancer, and hepatocellular carcinoma. However, its role in the pathogenesis of gastric cancer remains unknown. The Wnt/β-catenin pathway contributes to the development of gastric cancer. ZEB2-AS1 expression was firstly detected in the gastric carcinoma tissue samples as well as in gastric cancer cells. Knockdown of ZEB2-AS1 was performed by ZEB2-AS1-shRNA, and the viability, migration, invasion, and apoptosis of gastric cancer cells were determined by CCK-8, scratch assay, transwell, and flow cytometry, respectively. Furthermore, levels of Ki-67, PCNA, VEGF, MMP9, epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT) markers (E-cadherin, Vimentin and ZEB2), cleaved caspase 3/8/9 and PARP, active β-catenin, c-Myc, cyclinD1, and AXIN2 were assayed by Western blot or real-time PCR. Additionally, the role and mechanism of ZEB2-AS1 were confirmed in a xenograft nude mouse model. We found ZEB2-AS1 expression was increased in gastric carcinoma samples, and it was correlated with tumor progression. Also, its expression was elevated in gastric cancer cells. Knockdown of ZEB2-AS1 reduced the proliferation, migration, invasion, and EMT, but increased the apoptosis of gastric carcinoma cells. Furthermore, ZEB2-AS1 downregulation remarkably suppressed the expression of Ki-67, PCNA, VEGF and MMP9, and the activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling, whereas elevated the levels of cleaved caspase 3/8/9 and PARP in gastric cancer cells. And ZEB2 overexpression reversed the effects of ZEB2-AS1 downregulation on the proliferation, EMT and inactivation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling. Additionally, ZEB2-AS1 knockdown inhibited tumor growth, Ki-67 staining, and the expression of VEGF, MMP9, active β-catenin, c-Myc, cyclinD1, and AXIN2 in mice. In conclusion, ZEB2-AS1 promotes the tumorigenesis of gastric carcinoma that is related to the upregulation of ZEB2 and the activation of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway.


Long noncoding RNAs ZEB2-AS1 Gastric cancer ZEB2 Wnt/β-catenin 



This work was supported by Si miao Plan of Shaanxi Provincial Natural Science Foundation (No. 2016ZDKF19).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

We declare that we have no conflicts of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Feixia Wang
    • 1
  • Wu Zhu
    • 2
  • Ruili Yang
    • 1
  • Wanhua Xie
    • 2
  • Daojun Wang
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Clinical LaboratoryChang’an HospitalXi’anPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Clinical LaboratoryAnkang Municipality of Traditional Chinese Medicine HospitalAnkangPeople’s Republic of China

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