Published online Jan 27, 2021. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v13.i1.94
Peer-review started: August 6, 2020
First decision: September 21, 2020
Revised: November 19, 2020
Accepted: December 4, 2020
Article in press: December 4, 2020
Published online: January 27, 2021
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is highly heterogeneous, difficult to characterize and the molecular basis of HCC has been elusive.
The Cancer Genome Atlas is a large-scale project that has enabled improved characterization of cancers with several layers of data. Elucidating the layers of data in a disease can provide additional insights into the pathways that drive cancer.
A novel integrative approach of all publicly available high-throughput data from patient HCC tumors was used to delineate critical pathway dependencies in HCC.
A comprehensive analysis and characterization of all publicly available genomic, gene expression, methylation, miRNA and proteomic data in HCC covered 85 studies and 3355 patient sample profiles and identified the key overlapping dysregulated genes and pathways affected.
We identified the prognostic value of these genes in HCC genes, specifically with Netrin and Slit3 being novel proteins of prognostic importance to HCC.
Our large integrative analysis of all publicly available data in HCC and our pathway enrichment analysis has elucidated epidermal growth factor, β1-integrin, and axon guidance as pathway dependencies in HCC.
Based on our integrative analysis, epidermal growth factor, and β1-integrin are master regulators that could be considered as potential therapeutic targets in HCC.