Accumulating studies have confirmed that PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) are considered epigenetic effectors in cancer. We performed piRNA microarray expression analysis on renal cell carcinoma (RCC) tumor tissues and paired normal tissues and performed a series of in vivo and in vitro experiments to explore piRNAs associated with RCC progression and investigate their functional mechanisms. We found that piR-1742 was highly expressed in RCC tumors and that patients with high piR-1742 expression had a poor prognosis. Inhibition of piR-1742 significantly reduced tumor growth in RCC xenograft and organoid models. Mechanistically, piRNA-1742 regulates the stability of USP8 mRNA by binding directly to hnRNPU, which acts as a deubiquitinating enzyme that inhibits the ubiquitination of MUC12 and promotes the development of malignant RCC. Subsequently, nanotherapeutic systems loaded with piRNA-1742 inhibitors were found to effectively inhibit the metastasis and growth of RCC in vivo. Therefore, this study highlights the functional importance of piRNA-related ubiquitination in RCC and demonstrates the development of a related nanotherapeutic system, possibly contributing to the development of therapeutic approaches for RCC.© 2023. The Author(s).