Binder, S.,Hosler, N.,Riedel, D.,Zipfel, I.,Buschmann, T.,Kampf, C.,Reiche, K.,Burger, R.,Gramatzki, M.,Hackermuller, J.,Stadler, P. F.,Horn, F.

Interleukin-6 (IL-6)-activated Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription 3 (STAT3) facilitates survival in the multiple myeloma cell line INA-6 and therefore represents an oncogenic key player. However, the biological mechanisms are still not fully understood. In previous studies we identified microRNA-21 as a STAT3 target gene with strong anti-apoptotic potential, suggesting that noncoding RNAs have an impact on the pathogenesis of human multiple myeloma. Here, we describe five long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) induced by IL-6-activated STAT3, which we named STAiRs. While STAiRs 1, 2 and 6 remain unprocessed in the nucleus and show myeloma-specific expression, STAiRs 15 and 18 are spliced and broadly expressed. Especially STAiR2 and STAiR18 are promising candidates. STAiR2 originates from the first intron of a tumor suppressor gene. Our data support a mutually exclusive expression of either STAiR2 or the functional tumor suppressor in INA-6 cells and thus a contribution of STAiR2 to tumorigenesis. Furthermore, STAiR18 was shown to be overexpressed in every tested tumor entity, indicating its global role in tumor pathogenesis. Taken together, our study reveals a number of STAT3-induced lncRNAs suggesting that the interplay between the coding and noncoding worlds represents a fundamental principle of STAT3-driven cancer development in multiple myeloma and beyond.