J Cancer 2019; 10(4):957-967. doi:10.7150/jca.26666 This issue

Research Paper

The Upregulation of Trophinin-Associated Protein (TROAP) Predicts a Poor Prognosis in Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Hao Hu1*, Liang Xu2*, Yan Chen3, Shao-Ju Luo1, Ying-zi Wu3, Shi-Hua Xu1, Meng-Ting Liu1, Fen Lin2, Yan Mei2, Qin Yang2, Yuan-yuan Qiang2, You-wu Lin1, Yuan-jiang Deng1, Tong Lin1, Yong-qiang Sha1, Bi-Jun Huang2✉, Shi-Jun Zhang1✉

1. Department of Chinese Medicine, the First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510080, Guangdong, P. R. China
2. State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China; Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou 510060, P. R. China
3. Department of Chinese Medicine, the Third Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, Guangdong, P. R. China.
* The first two authors contributed to the study equally

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). See http://ivyspring.com/terms for full terms and conditions.
Hu H, Xu L, Chen Y, Luo SJ, Wu Yz, Xu SH, Liu MT, Lin F, Mei Y, Yang Q, Qiang Yy, Lin Yw, Deng Yj, Lin T, Sha Yq, Huang BJ, Zhang SJ. The Upregulation of Trophinin-Associated Protein (TROAP) Predicts a Poor Prognosis in Hepatocellular Carcinoma. J Cancer 2019; 10(4):957-967. doi:10.7150/jca.26666. Available from https://www.jcancer.org/v10p0957.htm

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Purpose: Trophinin-associated protein (TROAP) is a cytoplasmic protein that plays a significant role in the processes of embryo transplantation and microtubule regulation. However, the relevant survival analysis and cancer progression analysis have not yet been reported.

Methods: Eighteen matched pairs of tumor and adjacent non-tumor samples were evaluated to detect the TROAP mRNA level. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was used to evaluate the TROAP expression in 108 hepatocellular carcinoma patients who underwent surgical resection. Meanwhile, data from the TCGA database was statistically evaluated.

Results: In the present study, we detected a significant increase in the TROAP mRNA level in tumor tissues when compared with adjacent non-tumor tissues. Moreover, the upregulation of TROAP was associated with increased serum AFP and GGT; the greater the tumor number was, the larger the tumor size, differentiation grade, and cancer embolus in clinical analysis. In HCC patients, elevated TROAP expression in the primary tumor was positively related to clinical severity, such as poor overall survival and disease-free survival. In addition, both univariate and multivariate survival analysis validated that TROAP expression was a promising independent risk factor for overall survival and disease-free survival in HCC patients. Furthermore, the results derived from the analysis of data from the TCGA database were consistent with previous results. Altogether, our results show that TROAP is a novel crucial regulator of HCC progression and is a potential therapeutic biomarker for HCC patients.

Conclusions: Elevated TROAP expression predicted a poor prognosis, and TROAP may serve as a potential biomarker for application in oncotherapy.

Keywords: trophinin-associated protein, hepatocellular carcinoma, prognosis, and biomarker.