The momentous role of N6-methyladenosine in lung cancer

Lung Cancer

J Cell Physiol. 2020 Nov 1. doi: 10.1002/jcp.30136. Online ahead of print.


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death worldwide. Although diagnostic methods and targeted drugs have been rapidly developed in recent years, the underlying molecular mechanisms in the pathogenesis of lung cancer remain enigmatic. The N6-methyladenosine (m6 A) modification is the most common modification of messenger RNA in eukaryotes and plays critical roles in many diseases, especially cancers. Ectopic m6 A modification is associated with human carcinogenesis, including lung cancer. The m6 A modification is mediated by methyltransferases (writers) and demethylases (erasers) and indirectly affects biological processes through the recruitment of specific reader proteins (readers). Many studies have shown that m6 A writers, erasers, and readers serve as specific and sensitive biomarkers for lung cancer diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy. This review summarizes recent studies on the biological functions of the m6 A modification in lung cancer and discusses the potential application of m6 A regulators in lung cancer diagnosis and therapeutics.