Tissue microarray for high-throughput analysis of gene expression profiles in hepatocellular carcinoma.
ABSTRACT: AIM:To study the expression profiles of HBsAg, HBcAg, p21WAF1/CIP1 (p21), Rb genes in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and to investigate their roles in the hepatocar-cinogenesis. METHODS:HCC tissue microarray containing 120-min tissues of 40 HCC cases was constructed. HBsAg, HBcAg, p21 and Rb proteins were immunohistochemically stained by streptavidin-peroxidase conjugated method (S-P). The expression loss of these genes in cancerous, para-cancerous tissues and adjacent normal liver tissues of 40 HCCs were comparatively examined. RESULTS:The positive rate of HBsAg expression in cancerous tissues of 40 HCCs was 7.5%, which was lower than that in para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues (chi2 =12.774, P < 0.01; chi2 = 18.442, P < 0.01). The positive rate of HBcAg expression in cancerous tissues of 40 HCCs was 20.0%, which was also lower than that in para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues (chi2 = 9.482, P < 0.01; chi2 = 14.645, P < 0.01). p21 protein deletion rate in cancerous tissues of 40 HCCs was 27.5%, which was higher than that in para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues (chi2 = 7.439, P < 0.01; chi2 = 11.174, P < 0.01). p21 protein deletion correlated remarkably with the pathological grade of HCC (chi2 = 0.072, P < 0.05). Rb protein deletion rate in cancerous tissues of 40 HCCs was 42.5%, which was also higher than that in para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues (chi2 = 10.551, P < 0.01; chi2 = 18.353, P < 0.01). Rb protein deletion rate did not correlate remarkably with tumor size or pathological grade of HCC (chi2 = 0.014, P > 0.05; chi2 = 0.017, P > 0.05). CONCLUSION:Expression deletion of HBsAg, HBcAg, p21 and Rb proteins in HCCs may play important roles in the carcinogenesis of HCC. Tissue microarray is an effective high-throughput technique platform for cancer research.
Project description:AIM:To clarify the location and distribution of Kupffer cells in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and to investigate their role in hepatocarcinogenesis. METHODS:Kupffer cells were immunohistochemically stained by streptavadin-peroxidase conjugated method (S-P). The numbers of Kupffer cells in cancerous, para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues of 48 HCCs were comparatively examined. RESULTS:The mean number of Kupffer cells in cancerous, para-cancerous and adjacent normal liver tissues was 12.7+/-6.8, 18.1+/-8.2 and 18.9+/-7.9 respectively. The number of Kuppfer cells in cancerous tissues was significantly lower than that in para-cancerous tissues (t=2.423, P<0.05) and adjacent normal liver tissues (t=2.521, P<0.05). As tumor size increased, the number of Kupffer cells in cancerous tissues significantly decreased (F=4.61, P<0.05). Moreover, there was also a significant difference in the number of Kupffer cells among well-differentiated, moderately-differentiated and poorly-differentiated cases(F=4.49, P<0.05). CONCLUSION:This study suggests that decrease of Kupffer cells in HCCs may play an important role in the carcinogenesis of HCC, the number of Kupffer cells in HCC is closely related to the size and differentiation grade of the tumor.
Project description:BACKGROUND & AIMS: The correlation between chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has been well-established. But the roles of viral factor remain uncertain. Only HBV X gene and nonsense mutations of S gene (C-terminal truncation of HBV surface protein) have been demonstrated to have transforming activity. Whether they play a significant role in hepatocarcinogenesis is still uncertain. METHODS: Twenty-five HBV-related HCC patients were positive for hepatitis B core antigen (HBcAg) in the cancerous parts of their HCC liver tissues by immunohistochemistry studies, and had available tissue for whole HBV genome sequence analysis. The results were compared with 25 gender and age-matched HBcAg negative HCCs. Plasmids encoding HBV S gene nonsense mutations identified from HBcAg (+) HCC tissue were constructed to investigate their cell proliferation, transformation activity and the oncogenic potentials by xenograft study and in vivo migration assay. RESULTS: HBcAg (+) HCC patients were significantly associated with cirrhosis and small tumor size (?2 cm) when compared with HBcAg (-) HCC patients. Southern blot analyses revealed freely replicative forms of HBV in the cancerous parts of HBcAg(+) HCC. Three nonsense mutations of S gene (sL95*, sW182*, and sL216*) were identified in the HBcAg(+) HCC tumor tissues. sW182* and sL216* were recurrently found in the 25 HBcAg (-) HCC tumor tissue, too. Functional studies of the above 3 non-sense mutations all demonstrated higher cell proliferation activities and transformation abilities than wild type S, especially sW182*. Tumorigenicity analysis by xenograft experiments and in vitro migration assay showed potent oncogenic activity of sW182* mutant. CONCLUSIONS: This study has demonstrated potent oncogenic activity of nonsense mutations of HBV S gene, suggesting they may play an important role in hepatocarcinogenesis.
Project description:AIM:In recent years, studies have suggested that Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is associated with HCC. The present study was to determine the prevalence of EBV in HCC patients, and whether EBV acted synergistically with hepatitis viruses in HCC carcinogenesis. METHODS:Liver tissue 115 HCC patients and 26 non-carcinoma patients were studied. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed to detect EBV BamHI W DNA, EBV LMP1 DNA, HBV X DNA, and HBV S DNA. Reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR) was performed to detect HCV RNA and HDV RNA. Immunohistochemistry was performed to detect LMP1, HBsAg, HBcAg and HCV. The positive ratios were compared between HCC group and control group by chi2 test. RESULTS:Totally, 78 HCC samples whose beta-globulin DNA was positively detected by amplified PCR were selected. PCR was performed in all cases for EBV DNA and HBV DNA. RT-PCR was performed in 18 cases for HCV RNA and HDV RNA. EBV BamHI W and EBV LMP1 were positive in 18 and 6 cases, respectively. HBV X gene and HBV S gene were positive in 42 and 27 cases respectively. HCV was positive in one of the 18 cases, and none was positive for HDV. The positive rates were 28.2% (22 of 78) for EBV DNA (BamHI W and/or LMP1) and 56.4% (44 of 78) for HBV DNA (X gene and/or S gene) respectively. In addition, 12 cases were positive for both EBV DNA and HBV DNA. Among the 26 cases in the control group, 2 cases were positive for EBV BamHI W, 4 positive for HBV X gene and 3 positive for HBV S gene. The positive rates were 8.0% (2 of 26) and 23.1% (6 of 26), respectively, for EBV DNA and HBV DNA. The result of DNA sequencing of BamHI W was 100% homologous with the corresponding sequence of B95-8. There was significant difference in EBV infection rate between HCC patients and controls (chi2 = 4.622, P<0.05). The difference in HBV infection rate was also significant (chi2 = 8.681, P<0.05). However, there was no obvious correlation between HBV and EBV in HCC patients (chi2 = 0.835, P>0.05). LMP1, HBV (HBsAg, HBcAg) and HCV were detected positively in 25, 45 and 6 of 78 cases of HCC tissues respectively. In the 26 control cases, the corresponding positive cases were 2, 4 and 0. The difference in EBV infection rate between HCC patients and control cases was statistically significant (chi2 = 6.02, P<0.05). The difference in HBV infection rate was also statistically significant (chi2 = 10.03, P<0.05). In the 25 cases with positive LMP1 expression, 6 were in the nuclei of tumor cells, 9 in the cytoplasm of tumor cells and 10 in mesenchymal lymphocyte cytoplasm. CONCLUSION:The existence of EBV infection in HCC tissues suggests that EBV may be involved in the hepatocellular carcinogenesis in China. HBV infection may be a major cause of HCC. There is no correlation between EBV and HBV in the development of HCC. The prevalence of HCV infection is low in our area, and HDV appears not to play a direct role in hepatocellular carcinogenesis.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is one of the most prominent risk factors for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development and virus-mediated cases represents more than 80% of HCC in East Asia, where it is endemic. Currently, the HBV status of pathological HCC is not fully clarified, especially by comparison to nontumorous tissues. Lack of clinicopathological animal models of HCC impedes clinical application of antiviral treatment in the field. MATERIALS AND METHODS:A cohort sample of 14 HCC and corresponding stroma tissues were analyzed for pathological patterns of HBV antigens using immunohistochemistry; 10 fresh primary tumor tissues were inoculated into NOD/SCID mice and risk factors for patient-derived xenograft (PDX) model were identified by the univariate F test. Consistency of HBV features and cellular biomarkers between patient tissues and tumor grafts were examined. RESULTS:In HCC, HBV surface antigen (HBsAg) was mainly absent. Only 9.9% of samples showed HBsAg positivity in the tumor tissue that was limited to benign hepatocytes. In contrast, HBV core antigen (HBcAg) exhibited positive staining in all HCC tissues, located mainly in the cytoplasm of tumor cells. Of 14 HCC cases, three were diagnosed as occult infection of HBV based on HBcAg expression. The successful rate for the PDX model was 20% (2/10). Tumor lesions on hepatic lobes of V and VI, severe liver dysfunction and higher CA125 showed p-values of 0.01, 0.035, and 0.01, respectively. HBsAg absence in original tumors of #6 and 8 patients were faithfully reproduced by engraftments. Mixed distribution of HBcAg in cellular compartments of original tumor cells was also observed in mice. ki67 was dramatically increased in tumor grafts. CONCLUSION:We delineated pathological HBV profiles of HCC specimens and perilesional areas, which provided evidence for virus-based therapy in the future. PDX mice may phenocopy virological and cellular features of patient tissues, which is novel in the virus-related hepatocarcinogenesis field.
Project description:Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the sixth most common tumor worldwide. The relationship between the gene methylation accumulation and HCC has been widely studied. In our study, we used the Sequenom EpiTYPER assay to investigate the methylation levels of the RASA3 in 164 HCC samples and paired adjacent non-cancerous tissues, and the association between methylation level and clinicopathological features. The methylation level of the RASA3 in HCC samples was found significantly lower than that in the adjacent non-cancerous tissues (P<0.0001). Moreover, the hypomethylation of RASA3 in HCC samples was connected with the presence of tumornecrosis (P=0.029) and alcohol intake (P=0.002). Furthermore, it was found that the expression of RASA3 was significantly decreased in tumor tissues (P=0.0053), which was also correlated with the methylation levels of RASA3 gene. Thus, RASA3 hypomethylation is a common feature in HCC, and may be a potential mechanism for HCC development, and serves as a useful biomarker for the early detection, especially in alcohol-associated HCCs.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:The goal of the present study was to investigate the potential correlation between the expression level of upregulator of cell proliferation (URGCP/URG4) and the prognosis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and to examine the biological function of URGCP/URG4 in the progression of HCC, to better understand its underlying molecular mechanism in hepatic tumorigenesis. DESIGN:URGCP/URG4 expression was analyzed in 15 HCC cell lines, in 278 archived paraffin-embedded HCC sections, and in 10 pairs of fresh HCC tumor and para-tumor non-cancerous tissues using immunohistochemistry (IHC) and Western blotting analysis (WB). The effect of URGCP/URG4 on cell proliferation and tumorigenesis was examined in vitro and in vivo. WB and luciferase reporter analyses were performed to identify the effects of URGCP/URG4-overexpression or -knockdown on expression of cell cycle regulators and transcriptional activity of FOXO3a. RESULTS:IHC results revealed an upregulation of URGCP/URG4 in all HCC cell lines and fresh HCC samples as compared with normal liver cells and para-tumor tissues, respectively. URGCP/URG4 was also expressed at a high level in 122 of the 278 (43.8%) archived HCC specimens. The expression level of URGCP/URG4 was significantly correlated with clinical staging and poor patient survival of HCC in the study cohort, and in various clinical subgroups. Strikingly, ectopic expression of URGCP/URG4 induced proliferation and anchorage-independent growth of HCC cells, while silencing of URGCP/URG4 had the opposite effect. Furthermore, URGCP/URG4 overexpression in HCC cells increased cellular entry into the G1/S transitional phase, associated with downregulation of p27(Kip1) and p21(Cip1) and upregulation of cyclin D1. These effects were accompanied by enhanced Akt activity and reduced FOXO3a transcriptional activity. CONCLUSIONS:URGCP/URG4 plays an important role in promoting proliferation and tumorigenesis of HCC and may represent a novel prognostic biomarker and therapeutic target for this disease.
Project description:The purpose of this study was to evaluate the gene expression of growth factors and growth factor receptors of primary hepatic masses, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and nodular hyperplasia (NH), in dogs. Quantitative real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction was performed to measure the expression of 18 genes in 18 HCCs, 10 NHs, 11 surrounding non-cancerous liver tissues and 4 healthy control liver tissues. Platelet-derived growth factor-B (PDGF-B), transforming growth factor-?, epidermal growth factor receptor, epidermal growth factor and hepatocyte growth factor were found to be differentially expressed in HCC compared with NH and the surrounding non-cancerous and healthy control liver tissues. PDGF-B is suggested to have the potential to become a valuable ancillary target for the treatment of canine HCC.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Holliday junction recognition protein (HJURP) has been implicated in many cancers including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, the underlying mechanism by which HJURP promotes HCC cell proliferation remains unclear. METHODS:RT-qPCR and immunohistochemistry were used to detect HJURP expression in HCC and adjacent tumor tissues and HCC cell lines. The localization of p21 were determined by immunofluorescence and western blot. Co-immunoprecipitation and western blot were used to validate the p21 stability and signaling pathways affected by HJURP. The effects of HJURP on HCC cell proliferation were assessed both in vivo and in vitro. The ERK1/2 pathway inhibitor U0126 and AKT pathway agonist SC-79 were used to treat HCC cell lines for further mechanistic investigations. RESULTS:HJURP expression was higher in HCC tissues than in para-tumor tissues. Moreover, ectopic HJURP expression facilitated the proliferation of HCC cells, whereas the depletion of HJURP resulted in decreased cell growth in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, the effects of HJURP silencing were reversed by p21 knockdown. Likewise, p21 overexpression inhibited cell growth ability mediated by HJURP elevation. Mechanistically, HJURP destabilized p21 via the MAPK/ERK1/2 and AKT/GSK3β pathways, which regulated the nucleus-cytoplasm translocation and ubiquitin-mediated degradation of p21. Clinically, high HJURP expression was correlated with unfavorable prognoses in HCC individuals. CONCLUSIONS:Our data revealed that HJURP is an oncogene that drives cell cycle progression upstream of p21 in HCC. These findings may provide a potential therapeutic and prognostic target for HCC.
Project description:Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the most common malignancies and a major cause of cancer-related mortality in the world. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNAs that play essential roles in various stages during cancer progression. The aim of the current study was to elucidate the role of miR-1269 in the pathogenesis of HCC.The expression of miR-1269 in HCC cells and tissues were determined by Real-time PCR analysis. Cell viability, colony formation and anchorage-independent growth ability assays were performed to examine cell proliferative capacity and tumorigenicity. Flow cytometry analysis was conducted to determine cell cycle progression. The expression of p21, CyclinD1, phosphorylated Rb, Rb and FOXO1 were examined by Western blotting analysis. Luciferase assay was used to determine whether FOXO1 is the direct target of miR-1269.miR-1269 was upregulated in HCC cells and tissues. Ectopic miR-1269 expression promoted, but inhibition of miR-1269 reduced, proliferation, tumorigenicity and cell cycle progression of HCC cells. Furthermore, we demonstrated that FOXO1 was a direct target of miR-1269. Suppression of FOXO1 by miR-1269 was associated with dysregulation of p21, cyclin D1, phosphorylated Rb and Ki67 expression, thereby playing an essential role in the growth of HCC cells.Our study indicated that overexpression of miR-1269 promotes cell proliferation in HCC through directly suppressing FOXO1, and functions as an oncomiR in HCC.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Aberrant expression of microRNA-146a (miR-146a) has been found in several classes of cancers. However, its expression and clinicopathological contribution in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has not been fully elucidated. OBJECTIVE: To explore the clinicopathological significance of the miR-146a level in HCC formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue. METHODS: Eighty-five HCC samples and their para-cancerous normal liver tissues were collected. Total mRNA including miRNA was extracted, and miR-146a expression was determined using real-time RT-PCR. Furthermore, the correlation between the miR-146a expression and clinicopathological parameters was investigated. RESULTS: MicroRNA-146a expression in HCC tissues was lower compared with that in adjacent non-cancerous hepatic tissues. MicroRNA-146a expression was also related to clinical TNM stage, metastasis, portal vein tumor embolus, and number of tumor nodes. CONCLUSIONS: Down-regulation of miR-146a is related to HCC carcinogenesis and deterioration of HCC. MicroRNA-146a may act as a suppressor miRNA of HCC, and it is therefore a potential prognostic biomarker for HCC patients.