The expression of novel gene URG4 in osteosarcoma: correlation with patients' prognosis

Pathology. 2009 Feb;41(2):149-54. doi: 10.1080/00313020802436808.


Aims: Up-regulated gene 4 (URG4) is a novel gene that may be associated with the onset of tumorigenesis and cell cycle regulation. The present study examined for the first time the expression of URG4 in osteosarcoma, which is one of the most rapidly growing sarcomas, and investigated its prognostic value in both disease-free and overall survival of the patients.

Methods: The expression of URG4 in osteosarcoma tissues was examined by immunohistochemistry in 46 patients who underwent surgical operation for osteosarcoma; the correlation of URG4 with proliferating cell nuclear antigen index (PCNA) and microvessel count (MVC) was analysed, and the prognostic value of URG4 in patients was investigated.

Results: URG4 was highly expressed in 40 of 46 (86.96%) osteosarcoma specimens with cytoplasmic staining, and also increased in the specimens with recurrence (p < 0.05) and metastasis (p < 0.05). The mean disease-free survival and overall survival were 50.25 and 54.08 months for patients with over-expressed URG4, compared with 69.54 and 70.01 months for those with low expression. URG4 was also found to be highly related with PCNA, while no significant relationship was found between URG4 and MVC.

Conclusions: URG4 may play important roles in the development of osteosarcoma, and might be a useful molecular marker for predicting the prognosis of osteosarcoma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antigens, CD34 / biosynthesis
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Bone Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Bone Neoplasms / mortality
  • Bone Neoplasms / pathology
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Microvessels / metabolism
  • Microvessels / pathology
  • Neoplasm Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / metabolism
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / pathology
  • Osteosarcoma / metabolism*
  • Osteosarcoma / mortality
  • Osteosarcoma / pathology
  • Prognosis
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen / biosynthesis


  • Antigens, CD34
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen
  • URGCP protein, human