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ORIGINAL ARTICLEExpression of Serum miR-16, let-7f, and miR-21 in Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma and their Clinical Significances by Wei Ge, De-cai Yu, Qing-guo Li, Xi Chen, Chen-yu Zhang, Yi-tao Ding,

Background: Recent studies showed that serum microRNAs were aberrantly expressed in cancers, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Serum microRNA (miRNA) profiles in HCC have been filtered in our previous studies. In this research, some serum miRNAs were further validated and their clinical significances were analyzed.
Methods: Sera from 90 HCC patients, the subjects, and 60 non-HCC normal, the controls, were used. The expression of serum microRNAs was measured using real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. AFP, as well as other clinical materials, were summarized from the HCC databases in our hospital.
Results: Serum miR-16, let-7f, and miR-21 are down-regulated in HCC while miR-98 and miR-221 are not regulated significantly. Moreover, these miRNAs are of specific clinical significance. The expression of serum miR-16 is down-regulated in the patients with a tumor more than 5 cm in diameter (p = 0.0013) and is correlated with some quantitative clinical features such as platelets (p = 0.0255), PT (p = 0.0007) and bilirubin (p = 0.0025). The expression of serum let-7f is up-regulated in the patients with a tumor more than 5 cm in diameter (p = 0.0367) and early recurrence (p = 0.0047). The expression of serum miR-21 is up-regulated in female patients with HCC (p = 0.0297).
Conclusions: Serum miR-16, let-7f, and miR-21 are related with the biological behavior of HCC, which means that they could be considered as the potential indicators to estimate the tumor size or the recurrence of HCC.

DOI: 10.7754/Clin.Lab.2013.130133