Integrated bioinformatics analysis of the association between apolipoprotein E expression and patient prognosis in papillary thyroid carcinoma
- Qunguang Jiang
- Wenqian Feng
- Chengfeng Xiong
- Yunxia Lv
Affiliations: Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, First Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China, Department of Operating Room, Nanchang University Second Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China, Department of Thyroid Surgery, Nanchang University Second Affiliated Hospital, Nanchang, Jiangxi 330006, P.R. China
- Published online on: January 17, 2020 https://doi.org/10.3892/ol.2020.11316
Copyright: © Jiang
et al. This is an open access article distributed under the
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The prognosis of most patients with papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) is excellent despite some cases of tumor progression or relapse. The present study was designed to reveal possible prognostic risk indicators for PTC. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) extracted from 4 Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) cohorts were subjected to functional enrichment analyses by Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genome (KEGG) pathway analysis. A dataset from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) was obtained to filter and validate significant genes using cytoHubba, followed by analysis of their association with clinicopathological characteristics and prognosis. In total, 240 DEGs were identified after data preprocessing. These DEGs were enriched in ‘intracellular redox equilibrium’, ‘release of exosome’, ‘cell adhesion’, ‘regulation of extracellular matrix’, ‘collagen binding’ and ‘energy metabolism’ based on GO analysis which including cellular component, molecular function and biological process. KEGG pathway analysis revealed that the DEGs were enriched in thyroid hormone synthesis, pathways in cancer, focal adhesion, metabolic pathways, apoptosis, PPAR signaling pathway and PI3K/AKT signaling pathway. Using cytoHubba, the following hub genes were identified: Apolipoprotein E (APOE); hemoglobin subunit α1 (HBA1); angiotensin II receptor 1 (AGTR1); collagen I α1 (COL1A1); galectin 3 (LGALS3) and TIMP metallopeptidase inhibitor 1 (TIMP1). The expression of these genes was found to be consistent in TCGA datasets. Kaplan‑Meier analysis revealed that APOE was significantly associated with overall survival (P=0.00067) and disease free survival (P=0.00220). Additionally, low expression of APOE was significantly associated with older age (P<0.001) and higher TNM stage (P<0.001) compared with the high expression group. Therefore, APOE may function as a predictive risk indicator for progression as well as prognosis of PTC.