BackgroundSpindle and kinetochore associated complex subunit 3 (SKA3) plays an important role in tumorigenesis and the progression of various tumors. But the relationship between SKA3 and early breast cancer remains unclear. The study aimed to explore the prognostic significance of SKA3 in breast cancer.
MethodsIn the study, SKA3 expression was initially assessed using the Oncomine database and The Cancer Genome Atlas database (TCGA). Then, we presented validation results for RT-qPCR (quantitative reverse transcription PCR) and ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay). The relationship between clinical characteristics and SKA3 expression was assessed by Chi-square test and Fisher's exact test. Kaplan-Meier method and Cox regression analysis were conducted to evaluate the prognostic value of SKA3. Gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) was performed to screen biological pathways using the TCGA dataset. Besides, single sample gene set enrichment analysis (ssGSEA) was utilized to identify immune infiltration cells about SKA3.
ResultsSKA3 mRNA was expressed at high levels in breast cancer tissues compared with normal tissues. Chi-square test and Fisher's exact test showed SKA3 expression was related to age, tumor (T) classification, node (N) classification, tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage, estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), molecular subtype, and race. RT-qPCR results showed that SKA3 expression was overexpressed in ER, PR status, and molecular subtype in Chinese people. Kaplan-Meier curves implicated that high SKA3 expression was related to a poor prognosis in female early breast cancer patients. Cox regression models showed that high SKA3 expression could be used as an independent risk factor for female early breast cancer. Four signaling pathways were enriched in the high SKA3 expression group, including mTORC1 signaling pathway, MYC targets v1, mitotic spindle, estrogen response early. Besides, the SKA3 expression level was associate with infiltrating levels of activated CD4 T cells and eosinophils in breast cancer.
ConclusionHigh SKA3 expression correlates with poor prognosis and immune infiltrates in breast cancer. SKA3 may become a biomarker for the prognosis of breast cancer.