Serum microRNA let-7a-1/let-7d/let-7f and miRNA 143/145 Gene Expression Profiles as Potential Biomarkers in HCV Induced Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Clinical and Chemical Pathology Department, Theodor Bilharz Research Institute, Egypt.

2 Department of Clinical and Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt.

3 Endemic Medicine and Hepatology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt.


Background: Egypt has the highest prevalence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) worldwide. Which make liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) major health concerns in Egypt. Circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) have been investigated as biomarkers for malignancies. We investigated miRNA gene expression of Lethal-7 (let-7) cluster: let7-a-1, let-7d-1, let-7f-1 and miRNA (miR)143/145 cluster in sera of HCC patients and chronic HCV patients. Methods: The study included 40 post HCV-Hepatocellular carcinoma patients, 40 chronic HCV patients divided into 2 subgroups, 20 cirrhotic patients and 20 non-cirrhotic patients, and 40 apparently healthy subjects as a control group. Gene expression analysis for studied miRNAs was done using quantitative SYBR Green reverse-transcription Real-Time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Results: We found that Let-7a-1 gene expression was significantly downregulated in the serum of HCV-HCC patients than in HCV non HCC cirrhotic group and was significantly upregulated in the serum of liver cirrhosis patients than HCV non-cirrhotic group. miR-143 and miR-145 expressions were significantly downregulated in the serum of HCC patients than in control group and miR-143 was significantly downregulated in the serum of non-cirrhotic HCV patients than in control group. Conclusion: The downregulation of serum let-7-a1, miR-143, and miR-145 gene expression may exhibit significant influence on the development of HCC in chronic HCV Egyptian patients and can be used as biomarkers for HCC diagnosis.


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