Vitamin D May Protect against Breast Cancer through the Regulation of Long Noncoding RNAs by VDR Signaling
Int J Mol Sci 2022 Mar 16;23(6):3189. doi: 10.3390/ijms23063189.
Janusz Blasiak 1, Jan Chojnacki 2, Elzbieta Pawlowska 3, Aleksandra Jablkowska 4, Cezary Chojnacki 2
Dietary vitamin D3 has attracted wide interest as a natural compound for breast cancer prevention and therapy, supported by in vitro and animal studies. The exact mechanism of such action of vitamin D3 is unknown and may include several independent or partly dependent pathways. The active metabolite of vitamin D3, 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25(OH)2D, calcitriol), binds to the vitamin D receptor (VDR) and induces its translocation to the nucleus, where it transactivates a myriad of genes. Vitamin D3 is involved in the maintenance of a normal epigenetic profile whose disturbance may contribute to breast cancer. In general, the protective effect of vitamin D3 against breast cancer is underlined by inhibition of proliferation and migration, stimulation of differentiation and apoptosis, and inhibition of epithelial/mesenchymal transition in breast cells. Vitamin D3 may also inhibit the transformation of normal mammary progenitors into breast cancer stem cells that initiate and sustain the growth of breast tumors. As long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) play an important role in breast cancer pathogenesis, and the specific mechanisms underlying this role are poorly understood, we provided several arguments that vitamin D3/VDR may induce protective effects in breast cancer through modulation of lncRNAs that are important for breast cancer pathogenesis. The main lncRNAs candidates to mediate the protective effect of vitamin D3 in breast cancer are lncBCAS1-4_1, AFAP1 antisense RNA 1 (AFAP1-AS1), metastasis-associated lung adenocarcinoma transcript 1 (MALAT1), long intergenic non-protein-coding RNA 511 (LINC00511), LINC00346, small nucleolar RNA host gene 6 (SNHG6), and SNHG16, but there is a rationale to explore several other lncRNAs.