Background: Globally, lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) is the most common type of lung cancer. The secreted protein angiopoietin-like 4 (ANGPTL4) has been implicated in a number of physiological and pathological processes, including angiogenesis and lipid metabolism. But the role of ANGPTL4 in LUAD remains unknown.

Methods: The expression of ANGPTL4 and miR-133a-3p was confirmed by public database analysis. Xenograft model, MTT, Clone formation and EdU analysis were used to confirm the effects of miR-133a-3p/ANGPTL4 on LUAD cell proliferation and growth. Wound healing and Transwell analysis were used to elucidate the role of miR-133a-3p/ANGPTL4 in LUAD cell migration and invasion. Oil red O staining was used to confirm ANGPTL4 in LUAD lipids production. Dual-luciferase reporter gene analysis was used to demonstrate miR-133a-3p could directly bind ANGPTL4 3′-UTR. WB and PCR were used to confirm the protein expression of ANGPTL4.

Results: ANGPTL4 was significantly increased in LUAD samples, which could promote LUAD cell proliferation, migration, invasion, growth and lipid production. miR-133a-3p could directly bind to ANGPTL4 mRNA, and repress the expression ANGPTL4, resulting in suppressing LUAD proliferation and metastasis.

Conclusion: In conclusion, miR-133a-3p/ANGPTL4 axis might be a potential biomarker and therapeutic target for LUAD patients.