Wang X, et al. J Comput Biol 2020.
To provide systematic insight into the composition and expression of transfer RNA (tRNA) derivatives transcriptome in colorectal cancer (CRC). tRNA derivatives expression profiles in three pairs of CRC and adjacent normal colon tissues were performed by tRNA-derived small RNA fragments (tRFs) and tRNA halves (tiRNA) sequencing, and microarray data of transcriptomes from CRC and paired controls were retrieved from Gene Expression Omnibus database. The differentially expressed tRFs and tiRNAs and
differentially expressed genes between CRC and paired normal samples were screened. The functional regulations between tRF and tiRNA and gene were identified. A total of 60 upregulated and 48 downregulated tRNA derivatives and 7373 upregulated and 12,138 downregulated messenger RNA (mRNA) were identified. The tRF and tiRNA-gene regulatory modules were constructed by analyzing computational tRF and tiRNA-target predictions and inverse expression relationships between tRF and tiRNAs and mRNA. Gene ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathway annotation showed that the function of targets of tiRNA-Tyr-GTA was mainly enriched in negative regulation of epithelial cell apoptotic process and peroxisome proliferator activated-receptors (PPAR) signaling pathway. Cellular response to monoamine stimulus and inflammatory bowel disease was enriched in function of tiRNA-Val-CAC. Two functions, including negative regulation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) cascade and choline metabolism in cancer, were enriched in tRF-Gln-CTG. The function of mesenchymal to epithelial transition was enriched in tRF-Leu-TAG. For the first time to our knowledge, our study provided a landscape of tRNA derivatives expression profiles in CRC. Further tRF and tiRNA-gene regulatory modules construction explored the potential functions related to these tRNA derivatives in the pathogenesis of CRC.