Cellular Oncology

, Volume 42, Issue 6, pp 757–768 | Cite as

The emerging role of noncoding RNAs in colorectal cancer chemoresistance

  • Ling Wei
  • Xingwu Wang
  • Liyan Lv
  • Yan Zheng
  • Nasha ZhangEmail author
  • Ming YangEmail author



Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most prevalent cancer in the world and one of the most lethal human malignancies. Chemotherapy with 5-fluorouracil, platinum, hydroxycamptothecin, vincristine, methotrexate, irinotecan, paclitaxel and/or cetuximab has significantly improved the survival of CRC patients. However, most CRC patients eventually develop chemoresistance, resulting in a poor prognosis. The mechanisms involved in CRC chemoresistance are complex and, as yet, inconclusive. Noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), such as small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs), microRNAs (miRNAs) and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs), represent transcripts without protein-coding potential. Accumulating evidence indicates that multiple deregulated ncRNAs, including miRNAs and lncRNAs, play pivotal roles in the development of chemoresistance in CRC. This notion has potential clinical implications.


In this review, we highlight the emerging roles and the regulatory mechanisms by which miRNAs and lncRNAs affect CRC chemoresistance. Tumor-specific miRNAs and lncRNAs may serve as novel therapeutic targets and prognostic biomarkers for CRC.


Colorectal cancer Chemotherapy Drug resistance Long non-coding RNA MicroRNA 


Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest

None declared.

Grant support

This study was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31671300, 31871306), the Taishan Scholars Program of Shandong Province (tsqn20161060), the Science and Technology Development Project of Shandong Province (2016GSF201211) and the Shandong Health Department (2015WS0155).


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Copyright information

© International Society for Cellular Oncology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Radiation Oncology, Cancer Research Center, Shandong Cancer Hospital and InstituteShandong First Medical University and Shandong Academy of Medical SciencesJinanChina
  2. 2.Department of Radiation Oncology, Shandong Cancer Hospital and InstituteShandong First Medical University and Shandong Academy of Medical SciencesJinanChina

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