Derisking xenobiotic-induced non-genotoxic carcinogenesis (NGC) represents a significant challenge during the safety assessment of chemicals and therapeutic drugs. The identification of robust mechanism-based NGC biomarkers has the potential to enhance cancer hazard identification. We previously demonstrated Constitutive Androstane Receptor (CAR) and WNT signaling-dependent up-regulation of the pluripotency associated Dlk1-Dio3 imprinted gene cluster non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) in the liver of mice treated with tumor-promoting doses of phenobarbital (PB). Here, we have compared phenotypic, transcriptional and proteomic data from wild-type, CAR/PXR double knock-out and CAR/PXR double humanized mice treated with either PB or chlordane, and show that hepatic Dlk1-Dio3 locus long ncRNAs are upregulated in a CAR/PXR-dependent manner by two structurally distinct CAR activators. We further explored the specificity of Dlk1-Dio3 locus ncRNAs as hepatic NGC biomarkers in mice treated with additional compounds working through distinct NGC modes of action. We propose that up-regulation of Dlk1-Dio3 cluster ncRNAs can serve as an early biomarker for CAR activator-induced non-genotoxic hepatocarcinogenesis and thus may contribute to mechanism-based assessments of carcinogenicity risk for chemicals and novel therapeutics.
- Dlk1-Dio3 cluster
- Non-coding RNAs
- Constitutive Androstane Receptor (CAR)
- Non-genotoxic Carcinogenesis (NGC)
- Cancer risk assessment