Transcription occurs across more than 70% of the human genome and more than half of currently annotated genes produce functional noncoding RNAs. Of these transcripts, the majority-long, noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs)-are greater than 200 nucleotides in length and are necessary for various roles in the cell. It is increasingly appreciated that these lncRNAs are relevant in both health and disease states, with the brain expressing the largest number of lncRNAs compared to other organs. Glioblastoma (GBM) is an aggressive, fatal brain tumor that demonstrates remarkable intratumoral heterogeneity, which has made the development of effective therapies challenging. The cooperation between genetic and epigenetic alterations drives rapid adaptation that allows therapeutic evasion and recurrence. Given the large repertoire of lncRNAs in normal brain tissue and the well-described roles of lncRNAs in molecular and cellular processes, these transcripts are important to consider in the context of GBM heterogeneity and treatment resistance. Herein, we review the general mechanisms and biological roles of lncRNAs, with a focus on GBM, as well as RNA-based therapeutics currently in development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1604
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021


  • Glioblastoma
  • Heterogeneity
  • LncRNA
  • MiRNA
  • Noncoding RNA
  • RNAi


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