Down-regulated expression of the CCAAT/enhancer binding protein alpha and beta genes in human hepatocellular carcinoma: a possible prognostic marker

Anticancer Res. Jan-Feb 2003;23(1A):351-4.


CCAAT/enhancer binding protein alpha (C/EBP alpha) and C/EBP beta, liver specific transcription factors, are involved in hepatocyte proliferation and differentiation. The expression level of the C/EBP alpha and C/EBP beta genes were examined between tumor and non-tumorous tissues of the same hepatocellular carcinoma patients with quantitative real-time polymerase chain reactions. The expression of both the C/EBP alpha and C/EBP beta genes was down-regulated in the majority of the tumor specimens compared with corresponding non-tumorous tissues. Patients whose expression of either C/EBP alpha or C/EBP beta was higher in tumors than non-tumorous tissues survived longer than those whose expression was lower in tumors. Higher expression of C/EBP alpha or C/EBP beta in tumors was reversibly correlated with the tumor size and progression of the clinical stage. These data imply that the comparison of C/EBP alpha and C/EBP beta expression between tumors and non-tumorous regions could be a prognostic marker for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-alpha / biosynthesis*
  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-alpha / genetics*
  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-beta / biosynthesis*
  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-beta / genetics*
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / metabolism*
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / surgery
  • Disease Progression
  • Down-Regulation
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / genetics
  • Liver Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology
  • Liver Neoplasms / surgery
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-alpha
  • CCAAT-Enhancer-Binding Protein-beta