1. Hematology and Oncology Unit, Department of Geriatrics, Qilu Hospital, Shandong University, Jinan, China.
2. Department of Hematology, Qilu Hospital, Shandong University, Jinan, China.
Background: As a regulatory unit of class III phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K), PIK3R4 is an important molecule involved in several malignant tumours, but the role and molecular mechanism of PIK3R4 in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is still unclear.
Methods: Multiple bioinformatics analyses were used to investigate the role and potential mechanisms of PIK3R4 in DLBCL. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT‒PCR) was performed to determine the expression of PIK3R4 in 80 DLBCL patients, and the survival time of DLBCL patients grouped according to PIK3R4 mRNA expression was compared.
Results: PIK3R4 is up-regulated in several malignant tumours, including DLBCL. Bioinformatics analyses revealed that PIK3R4 exhibits prognostic value in DLBCL patients, and the upregulation of this gene in DLBCL samples was subsequently validated. In the functional category, GO analysis revealed that PIK3R4-related genes are enriched in ribosomal RNA metabolic process, the DNA damage response, mitochondrial gene expression, and nucleoside metabolic process. KEGG pathway analysis showed the enrichment of PIK3R4-related genes in the ribosome, oxidative phosphorylation, proteasome, and cellular senescence pathways. More importantly, the expression of PIK3R4 in DLBCL was correlated with the immune cell content in the cancer microenvironment, CD8(+) T-cell and neutrophil infiltration and the levels of several immune checkpoint molecules, including BTN3A2, BTN3A1, PRF1, CXCL9, PDCD1, and TIGIT.
Conclusion: Our study demonstrated that PIK3R4, as a novel immune microenvironment-related gene, may represent an important diagnostic, prognostic, or therapeutic biomarker in DLBCL patients.
Keywords: PIK3R4, immune infiltration, DLBCL, biomarker, prognostic indicator