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Gastroenterology Research and Practice
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 101083, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/101083
Clinical Study

Regulation Effect of Zinc Fingers and Homeoboxes 2 on Alpha-Fetoprotein in Human Hepatocellular Carcinoma

1Department of Pathology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China
2Department of Pathology, Guangdong Hospital of Chinese Traditional Medicine, Guangzhou, China

Received 4 July 2012; Accepted 27 January 2013

Academic Editor: Spiros D. Ladas

Copyright © 2013 Shao Wei Hu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Aim. To investigate the relationship between alpha-fetoprotein and zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 in hepatocellular carcinoma. Materials and Methods. The expressions of zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2, nuclear factor-YA, and alpha-fetoprotein mRNA in 63 hepatocellular carcinoma were detected by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and compared with the clinical parameters of the patients. Selectively, silence of zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 in HepG2 cells was detected by RNA interference technique. Results. Alpha-fetoprotein mRNA expression was detected in 60.3% of hepatocellular carcinoma cases. Zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 mRNA expression (36.5%) was significantly negatively correlated with serum alpha-fetoprotein concentration and mRNA expression. A strong positive correlation was found between zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 and nuclear factor-YA mRNA expression (42.9%), while the latter was negatively correlated with serum alpha-fetoprotein concentration and mRNA expression. Treatment with zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 small interfering RNA led to 85% and 83% silence of zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 mRNA and protein expression and 60% and 61% reduction of nuclear factor-YA mRNA and protein levels in the HepG2 cells, respectively. Downregulation of zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 also induced a 2.4-fold increase in both alpha-fetoprotein mRNA and protein levels. Conclusions. Zinc fingers and homeoboxes 2 can regulate alpha-fetoprotein expression via the interaction with nuclear factor-YA in human hepatocellular carcinoma and may be used as an adjuvant diagnostic marker for alpha-fetoprotein-negative hepatocellular carcinoma.