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01.12.2019 | Primary research | Ausgabe 1/2019 Open Access

Cancer Cell International 1/2019

KLF8 overexpression promotes the growth of human lung cancer cells by promoting the expression of JMJD2A

Cancer Cell International > Ausgabe 1/2019
Dongjie Ma, Hongsheng Liu, Yingzhi Qin, Zhenhuan Tian, Shanqing Li, Naixin Liang
Wichtige Hinweise
Dongjie Ma and Hongsheng Liu contributed equally to this work

Supplementary information

Supplementary information accompanies this paper at https://​doi.​org/​10.​1186/​s12935-019-0970-3.

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Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.



Non-small-cell lung cancer (lung cancer) has become one of the leading causes worldwide and the underlying mechanism is not fully understood. The transcriptional factor Kruppel like factor 8 (KLF8) is involved in the initiation, progression, transformation, and metastasis of diverse cancers. However, the roles of KLF8 in human non-small cell lung cancer remain unknown.


CCK-8 kit and colony formation assay were performed to determine the cell growth of lung cancer cells. Flow cytometry analysis was used to evaluate apoptosis and cell cycle of lung cancer cells. Luciferase reporter assay was used to examine the activation of JMJD2A promoter by KLF8. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assay was performed to evaluate the binding of KLF8 to JMJD2A promoter. Western blot and polymerase chain reaction were applied to analyze the expression of interested genes.


The mRNA and protein levels of KLF8 in human non-small cell lung cancer tissues were overexpressed compared with the non-cancer tissues. KLF8 was knocked down with lentivirus-mediated short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) in human lung cancer cells (A549 and H1299 cells). The phenotypic results showed that KLF8 knockdown decreased the proliferation rate and colony formation of lung cancer cells. By contrast, lentivirus-mediated KLF8 overexpression promoted the growth of lung cancer cells (A549 and H1299 cells) and non-cancerous bronchial epithelial cell line BEAS-2B. Next, we showed that KLF8 regulated cell cycle at the G0 phase but not regulates cellular apoptosis of lung cancer cells. KLF8 regulated the expression of the cell cycle regulators P21 and CDK4 in a JMJD2A-dependent manner and JMJD2A knockdown significantly blocked the functions of KLF8 in regulating cell cycle and proliferation of lung cancer cells. Finally, we observed that KLF8 bound the promoter of JMJD2A and facilitated the expression of JMJD2A.


Our evidence demonstrated that KLF8 upregulation in human lung cancer promotes the cell proliferation and colony formation of lung cancer cells. KLF8 binds to the promoter of JMJD2A and subsequently regulates the expression of P21 and CDK4, which contributes to the regulation of cell cycle by KLF8. KLF8 may serve as a target for the treatment of human lung cancer.
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