Published online Aug 28, 2014. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v20.i32.11340
Revised: February 24, 2014
Accepted: May 23, 2014
Published online: August 28, 2014
AIM: To investigate microRNA-133a (miR-133a) expression in colorectal cancer (CRC) and its relationship with tumorigenesis and disease prognosis.
METHODS: Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to measure levels of miR-133a in tumor samples and adjacent non-cancerous tissues from 169 patients undergoing radical resection for CRC. The associations between miR-133a expression and patient age, sex, as well as clinicopathologic parameters, such as tumor size, differentiation, location, invasion depth, metastasis, tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage and overall patient survival, were analyzed by Mann-Whitney U and Kruskal-Wallis tests. The Kaplan-Meier method and Cox proportional hazards regression analyses were performed to estimate the prognostic factors for patient survival prediction.
RESULTS: The expression of miR-133a was significantly downregulated in CRC tissues compared with adjacent non-cancerous tissues (P < 0.05). This reduction was associated with the depth of the local invasion, poor differentiation, lymph node metastasis and advanced disease (P < 0.05). Moreover, Kaplan-Meier analysis demonstrated that patients with low miR-133a expression had poorer overall survival (OS) than those with high miR-133a expression (P < 0.001). Univariate analysis revealed statistically significant correlations between OS and miR-133a level, tumor local invasion, lymph node metastasis and TNM stage (P < 0.001). Furthermore, miR-133a levels and TNM stage were independently associated with OS (HR = 0.590, 95%CI: 0.350-0.995, P < 0.05; and HR = 6.111, 95%CI: 1.029-36.278, P < 0.05, respectively).
CONCLUSION: The downregulation of miR-133a may play an important role in the progression of CRC and can be used as an independent factor to determine CRC prognosis.
Core tip: In the present study, the level of microRNA-133a (miR-133a) was found to be downregulated in colorectal cancer (CRC) tissues. The altered expression of miR-133a was significantly associated with malignant behavior, including tumor cell differentiation, local invasion, lymph node metastasis and tumor-node-metastasis stage. Multivariate analysis suggested that low expression of miR-133a is an independent prognostic factor for CRC. Furthermore, the data suggest that miR-133a may play a critical role in CRC progression, and thus may serve as a potential therapeutic target.