Background: Members of the protein kinase C (PKC) isoenzyme family play a central role in the tumorigenesis of several tissues. However, little is known about subtype specific intracellular expression of PKC in human hepatocellular carcinomas.
Methods: We investigated PKC isoforms mRNA expression in 42 HCC specimens using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis, and the correlation between PKC isoforms expression and clinicopathologic parameters.
Results: We found that PKCalpha, PKCdelta and PKCiota mRNA were significantly increased in HCCs as compared to the corresponding non-cancerous liver tissues. PKCalpha expression also significantly correlated with tumor size (P<0.05) and TNM stage (P<0.05), but PKCdelta and PKCiota did not. The log-rank analysis revealed that patients with higher PKCalpha mRNA expression in the HCC tissues had significantly shorter survival rate than patients with lower PKCalpha mRNA expression (P<0.01).
Conclusions: Our results suggested that the PKCalpha may be a prognostic factor for the survival of patients with HCC.