Underexpression of miR-126-3p in Patients with Cholangiocarcinoma

Document Type: Research Articles


1 Department of Molecular Biology, São José do Rio Preto Medical School (FAMERP), São Paulo, Brazil.

2 School of Medical Sciences of the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Campinas, Brazil.

3 Base Hospital (HB), São José do Rio Preto, São Paulo, Brazil.

4 Medical School of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal.


Objectives: To evaluate the expression of miR-126-3p and its potential as a biomarker for cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) and to better understand the prognosis, comorbidities, and lifestyle habits associated with the disease. Methods: Fifty-nine individuals were distributed into either the study group (38 CCA patients) or the control group (21 individuals without liver diseases). Total RNA was extracted, cDNA synthesis was performed, and miR-126-3p expression was assessed using real-time PCR. For statistical analysis, alpha error was set at 5%. Results: MiR-126-3p was found to be underexpressed in the study group relative to the controls (0.42; P=0.001). Additionally, marked underexpression was found in the study group in when associated with smoking (0.28; P=0.0001), alcoholism (0.19; P=0.0001), hypertension (0.29; P=000.1), and diabetes (0.12; P=0.0003) relative to the controls. No association was found between miR-126-3p expression and tumor subtypes (iCCA=0.42; pCCA=0.45; dCCA=0.72; P=0.9155). A total of 67% of dCCA patients were event-free at 16 months of follow up, while both pCCA and iCCA exhibited event-free survival rates of 25%, though there was no significant difference between these subgroups (P=0.273). Conclusion: The underexpression of mir-126-3p is associated with cholangiocarcinoma and can be potentiated by alcoholism, hypertension, diabetes, and smoking, the latter of which is an independent risk factor for this cancer. Furthermore, dCCA patients exhibit higher survival rates relative to patients with pCCA and iCCA.


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