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Cancers 2018, 10(8), 258;

Circular RNAs: Characteristics, Function and Clinical Significance in Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Institute for Translational Medicine, Medical College of Qingdao University, Dengzhou Road 38, Qingdao 266021, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 July 2018 / Revised: 27 July 2018 / Accepted: 31 July 2018 / Published: 2 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Biomarkers)
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Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths worldwide. HCC patients are commonly diagnosed at an advanced stage, for which highly effective therapies are limited. Moreover, the five-year survival rate of HCC patients remains poor due to high frequency of tumor metastasis and recurrence. These challenges give rise to the emergent need to discover promising biomarkers for HCC diagnosis and identify novel targets for HCC therapy. Circular RNAs (circRNAs), a class of long-overlook non-coding RNA, have been revealed as multi-functional RNAs in recent years. Growing evidence indicates that circRNA expression alterations have a broad impact in biological characteristics of HCC. Most of these circRNAs regulate HCC progression by acting as miRNA sponges, suggesting that circRNAs may function as promising diagnostic biomarkers and ideal therapeutic targets for HCC. In this review, we summarize the current progress in studying the functional role of circRNAs in HCC pathogenesis and present their potential values as diagnostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets. In-depth investigations on the function and mechanism of circRNAs in HCC will enrich our knowledge of HCC pathogenesis and contribute to the development of effective diagnostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets for HCC. View Full-Text
Keywords: HCC; circRNA; miRNA sponge; diagnostic biomarker; therapeutic target HCC; circRNA; miRNA sponge; diagnostic biomarker; therapeutic target

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Wang, M.; Yu, F.; Li, P. Circular RNAs: Characteristics, Function and Clinical Significance in Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Cancers 2018, 10, 258.

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