Milad Ashrafizadeh 1 , Ali Zarrabi 2 , 3 , Sima Orouei 4 , Vahideh Zarrin 5 , Ebrahim Rahmani Moghadam 6 , Amirhossein Zabolian 7 , Shima Mohammadi 8 , Kiavash Hushmandi 9 , Yashar Gharehaghajlou 10 , Pooyan Makvandi 11 , Masoud Najafi 12 , * , Reza Mohammadinejad 13 , *
12 June 2020
Molecular signaling pathways play a significant role in the regulation of biological mechanisms, and their abnormal expression can provide the conditions for cancer development. The signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) is a key member of the STAT proteins and its oncogene role in cancer has been shown. STAT3 is able to promote the proliferation and invasion of cancer cells and induces chemoresistance. Different downstream targets of STAT3 have been identified in cancer and it has also been shown that microRNA (miR), long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) and other molecular pathways are able to function as upstream mediators of STAT3 in cancer. In the present review, we focus on the role and regulation of STAT3 in gastric cancer (GC). miRs and lncRNAs are considered as potential upstream mediators of STAT3 and they are able to affect STAT3 expression in exerting their oncogene or onco-suppressor role in GC cells. Anti-tumor compounds suppress the STAT3 signaling pathway to restrict the proliferation and malignant behavior of GC cells. Other molecular pathways, such as sirtuin, stathmin and so on, can act as upstream mediators of STAT3 in GC. Notably, the components of the tumor microenvironment that are capable of targeting STAT3 in GC, such as fibroblasts and macrophages, are discussed in this review. Finally, we demonstrate that STAT3 can target oncogene factors to enhance the proliferation and metastasis of GC cells.