AKT-induced lncRNA VAL promotes EMT-independent metastasis through diminishing Trim16-dependent Vimentin degradation

Han Tian, Rong Lian, Yun Li, Chenying Liu, Shujun Liang, Wei Li, Tianyu Tao, Xingui Wu, Yaokai Ye, Xia Yang, Jian Han, Xuwei Chen, Jun Li, Yukai He, Mengfeng Li, Jueheng Wu, Junchao Cai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Despite the importance of AKT overactivation in tumor progression, results from clinical trials of various AKT inhibitors remain suboptimal, suggesting that AKT-driven tumor metastasis needs to be further understood. Herein, based on long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) profiling induced by active AKT, we identify that VAL (Vimentin associated lncRNA, LINC01546), which is directly induced by AKT/STAT3 signaling, functions as a potent pro-metastatic molecule and is essential for active AKT-induced tumor invasion, metastasis and anoikis resistance in lung adenocarcinoma (LAD). Impressively, chemosynthetic siRNAs against VAL shows great therapeutic potential in AKT overactivation-driven metastasis. Interestingly, similar to activated AKT in LAD cells, although unable to induce epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), VAL exerts potent pro-invasive and pro-metastatic effects through directly binding to Vimentin and competitively abrogating Trim16-depedent Vimentin polyubiquitination and degradation. Taken together, our study provides an interesting demonstration of a lncRNA-mediated mechanism for active AKT-driven EMT-independent LAD metastasis and indicates the great potential of targeting VAL or Vimentin stability as a therapeutic approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5127
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • General
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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