Decreased expression of miR-126 correlates with metastatic recurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma

Clin Exp Metastasis. 2013 Jun;30(5):651-8. doi: 10.1007/s10585-013-9569-6. Epub 2013 Feb 3.


The liver transplant (LT) situation represents an attractive model for studying hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) metastasis. Based on microarray data, we previously found that miR-126 expression was lower in tumor tissues of patients with post-LT HCC recurrence compared with non-recurrence. In this study, we examined the expression of miR-126 in HCC samples from 68 patients who had undergone LT using quantitative real-time PCR and analyzed its correlation with clinicopathological features and prognosis of patients. Furthermore, we performed experimental analyses to explore the involvement of miR-126 in HCC metastasis. We found that miR-126 levels were lower in tumor tissues of patients with post-LT HCC recurrence in comparison to patients with no-recurrence (p = 0.009). Lower expression of miR-126 in HCC was associated significantly with tumor recurrence (p = 0.011) and poor survival (p = 0.009) of patients. Functional studies indicated that ectopic expression of miR-126 significantly inhibits HCC cells migration, invasion, proliferation and colony formation in vitro, and suppresses experimental lung colonization in vivo. Our study revealed that down-regulation of miR-126 plays an important role in HCC metastasis, and suggest a potential application of miR-126 in prognosis prediction and HCC treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / pathology*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Down-Regulation
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / genetics
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Male
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Metastasis*
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Recurrence


  • MIRN126 microRNA, human
  • MicroRNAs