C-Met as a prognostic marker in gastric cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis

PLoS One. 2013 Nov 4;8(11):e79137. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0079137. eCollection 2013.


Background: c-Met has been recognized as an important therapeutic target in gastric cancer, but the prognostic property of the c-Met status is still unclear. We aimed to characterize the prognostic effect of c-Met by systematic review and meta-analysis.

Methods: We identified 15 studies assessing survival in gastric cancer by c-Met status. Effect measure of interest was hazard ratio (HR) for survival. Meta-regression was performed to estimate the relationship between HR and disease stage. Random-effects meta-analyses were used to account for heterogeneity.

Results: 15 eligible studies provided outcome data stratified by c-Met status in 2210 patients. Meta-analysis of the HRs indicated a significantly poorer Os in patients with high c-Met expression (average HR=2.112, 95%CI: 1.622-2.748). Subgroup analysis showed the prognostic effect of c-Met was identical in protein-level and gene-level based methodology. The same effect was also seen in Asian and Western ethnicity subgroup analysis. Meta-regression showed HR was not associated with disease stage.

Conclusions: Patients with tumors that harbor high c-Met expression are more likely to have a worse Os, with this prognostic effect independent of disease stage. c-Met status should be evaluated in clinical prognosis.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / genetics*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Prognosis
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met / genetics*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met / metabolism
  • Stomach Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Stomach Neoplasms / therapy
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met

Grant support

This research is supported by the projects 30972551 and 81273187 from National Natural Science Foundation of China.(www.nsfc.gov.cn). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.