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Int J Oncol. 2005 Sep;27(3):661-7.

Patterns of expression of cytochrome P450 genes in progression of hepatitis C virus-associated hepatocellular carcinoma.

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Department of Surgery II, Yamaguchi University School of Medicine, Ube, Yamaguchi 755-8505, Japan.


Cytochrome P450 (CYP) genes are involved in the pathogenesis of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). To examine changes in expression of CYPs in HCC arising from hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected liver, we used oligonucleotide array data of 27 CYPs from samples of 50 HCV-associated HCCs, five HCV-infected non-tumorous livers, and six HCV-negative normal livers. Progression of primary HCC can be characterized by decrease in the grade of tumor differentiation, increased frequency of venous invasion and increased tumor size. On the basis of tumor differentiation, the self-organizing map (SOM) classified the 27 CYPs into four groups. The first group contained 11 CYPs, including the CYP2C and CYP4F families, that showed decreased expression in parallel with progression of HCV-infected liver to HCC with less differentiation. The second group contained CYP-IID, CYP3A7 and CYP27A1, genes that showed high levels of expression specific to well differentiated HCC. The third group contained 5 sterol-metabolizing CYPs with levels lower in HCV-infected livers than in HCV-uninfected livers. The last group included the CYP2E1 and CYP3A families. Among the 27 CYPs, levels of 7 (CYP2B6, CYP-IIC, CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP3A5, CYP4F3 and CYP27A1) were significantly lower and levels of 2 (CYP2E1 and CYP4F2) were slightly lower in HCC with venous invasion than in HCC without venous invasion. Levels of CYP-IIC and CYP2C9 were inversely associated with tumor size. In contrast, levels of CYP51A1 were positively associated with tumor size. Our present study revealed that expression of specific CYPs was altered in conjunction with progression of HCV-associated HCC. These CYPs may serve as markers of progression and molecular targets for treatment of HCV-associated HCC.

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