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      The bright side of dark matter: lncRNAs in cancer

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          Abstract

          The traditional view of genome organization has been upended in the last decade with the discovery of vast amounts of non–protein-coding transcription. After initial concerns that this “dark matter” of the genome was transcriptional noise, it is apparent that a subset of these noncoding RNAs are functional. Long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) genes resemble protein-coding genes in several key aspects, and they have myriad molecular functions across many cellular pathways and processes, including oncogenic signaling. The number of lncRNA genes has recently been greatly expanded by our group to triple the number of protein-coding genes; therefore, lncRNAs are likely to play a role in many biological processes. Based on their large number and expression specificity in a variety of cancers, lncRNAs are likely to serve as the basis for many clinical applications in oncology.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          J Clin Invest
          J. Clin. Invest
          J Clin Invest
          The Journal of Clinical Investigation
          American Society for Clinical Investigation
          0021-9738
          1558-8238
          1 August 2016
          1 August 2016
          1 August 2017
          : 126
          : 8
          : 2775-2782
          Affiliations
          [1 ]Department of Radiation Oncology and
          [2 ]Michigan Center for Translation Pathology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.
          [3 ]Departments of Radiation Oncology, Urology, and Medicine, and
          [4 ]Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, UCSF, San Francisco, California, USA.
          [5 ]Comprehensive Cancer Center,
          [6 ]Department of Pathology, and
          [7 ]Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.
          Author notes
          Address correspondence to: Arul M. Chinnaiyan, Michigan Center for Translational Pathology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The University of Michigan Cancer Center, 1500 E. Medical Center Drive, 5309 Comprehensive Cancer Center, SPC5940, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, USA. Phone: 734.615.4062; E-mail: arul@ 123456med.umich.edu .
          Article
          PMC4966302 PMC4966302 4966302 84421
          10.1172/JCI84421
          4966302
          27479746
          Copyright © 2016, American Society for Clinical Investigation
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