Copyright ©The Author(s) 2022. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Hepatol. Dec 27, 2022; 14(12): 1985-1996
Published online Dec 27, 2022. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v14.i12.1985
Role of microRNA-regulated cancer stem cells in recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma
Lei Li, Chen Xun, Chun-Hong Yu
Lei Li, Department of Pathology, University of Otago, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
Chen Xun, Department of Hepatobiliary Surgery, Zhuzhou Central Hospital, Zhuzhou 412000, Hunan Province, China
Chun-Hong Yu, School of Engineering Medicine, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
Author contributions: Li L, and Xun C completed the drawing of the picture and the writing of part of the content; Yu CH conceived and supervised the writing of this article.
Conflict-of-interest statement: All the authors report having no relevant conflicts of interest for this article.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article that was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Corresponding author: Chun-Hong Yu, PhD, Lecturer, School of Engineering Medicine, Beihang University, No. 37 Xueyuan Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100191, China.
Received: September 5, 2022
Peer-review started: September 5, 2022
First decision: October 20, 2022
Revised: October 24, 2022
Accepted: November 22, 2022
Article in press: November 22, 2022
Published online: December 27, 2022

Among the most common cancers, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has a high rate of tumor recurrence, tumor dormancy, and drug resistance after initial successful chemotherapy or radiotherapy. A small subset of cancer cells, cancer stem cells (CSCs), exhibit stem cell characteristics and are present in various cancers, including HCC. The dysregulation of microRNAs (miRNAs) often accompanies the occurrence and development of HCC. miRNAs can influence tumorigenesis, progression, recurrence, and drug resistance by regulating CSCs properties, which supports their clinical utility in managing and treating HCC. This review summarizes the regulatory effects of miRNAs on CSCs in HCC with a special focus on their impact on HCC recurrence.

Keywords: Hepatocellular carcinoma, Cancer stem cells, MicroRNAs, Recurrence.

Core Tip: The liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs) play a crucial role in the development of hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs) and play a significant role in the development of drug resistance and cancer recurrence. LCSCs are regulated by many factors, of which microRNAs (miRNAs) are an important part. miRNAs can influence the development of HCC by regulating the stem cell properties of LCSCs.