Published online Oct 15, 2018. doi: 10.4251/wjgo.v10.i10.344
Peer-review started: July 5, 2018
First decision: July 24, 2018
Revised: August 5, 2018
Accepted: August 30, 2018
Article in press: August 31, 2018
Published online: October 15, 2018
Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP)-producing gastric cancer (AFPGC) is recognized as one of the most aggressive tumors, with a high propensity for liver metastasis and subsequent poor prognosis compared with other GC subtypes. Recent comprehensive molecular analyses have not yet referred to this minor subtype because of its rareness.
To discover universal biomarkers for liver metastasis by researching AFPGC-specific microRNAs (miRNAs).
To investigate the clinical utility of AFPGC-specific miRNA for monitoring and prognostic prediction of patients.
We performed a comprehensive miRNA array-based approach to compare miRNA expression levels between AFP-positive and AFP-negative cells, and also investigated the clinical utility of the identified AFPGC-specific miRNAs.
We found the expression of miR-122-5p was significantly higher in the AFPGC tissues than the normal and non-AFPGC tissues. The expression levels of this miRNA were also higher in the plasma samples of patients with AFPGC compared with those of healthy volunteers and non-AFPGC patients and correlated with plasma AFP levels. Moreover, the tissue expression level of miR-122-5p exhibited a stronger correlation with malignant potential than plasma AFP level in AFPGC patients.
miR-122-5p as a potentially useful biomarker for early detection and disease monitoring in patients with AFPGC.
We identified miR-122-5p as AFPGC-specific miRNA. miR-122-5p might be a clinical useful biomarker in AFPGC. Although studies are warranted to demonstrate the biological function underlying altered expression of miR-122-5p in AFPGC, the miR-122-5p might be a potential therapeutic target for liver metastasis in AFPGC.