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Infect Agent Cancer. 2018 Nov 26;13:36. doi: 10.1186/s13027-018-0212-7. eCollection 2018.

Mitofusin-2 acts as biomarker for predicting poor prognosis in hepatitis B virus related hepatocellular carcinoma.

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1Department of Oncology, The Affiliated Yantai Yuhuangding Hospital of Qingdao University, Yantai, Shandong 264000 People's Republic of China.
2Department of Hepatology, Infectious Disease Hospital of Yantai City, Yantai, Shandong 264001 People's Republic of China.
Contributed equally



To investigate the expression of Mitofusin-2 (MFN2) in HCC tissues and its role in the development of HCC.


A total of 107 HCC specimens were collected for tissue microarray analysis and immunohistochemistry (IHC) analysis. The relationship between MFN2 expression and clinical features of patients with HCC was analyzed.


Expression level of MFN2 in HCC tissues was 0.92 ± 0.78, significantly lower than that of matched paracancerous liver tissues (1.25 ± 0.75). Patients with low expression of MFN2 had significantly higher rates of cirrhosis than those with high expression of MFN2 (P = 0.049). Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed that HCC patients with low expression of MFN2 had a worse prognosis in overall survival than HCC patients with high expression of MFN2 (P = 0.027). Patients with high expression of MFN2 had a better prognosis in disease-free survival compared with HCC patients with low expression of MFN2 (P = 0.047). Vascular invasion and MFN2 expression were shown to be prognostic variables for overall survival in patients with HCC. Multivariate analysis showed that vascular invasion (P < 0.001) and MFN2 expression (P = 0.045) were independent prognostic factors for overall survival. Vascular invasion (P < 0.001) and MFN2 expression (P = 0.042) were independent risk factors associated with disease-free survival.


Our data revealed that MFN2 expression was decreased in HCC samples. High MFN2 expression was correlated with longer survival times in patients with HCC and served as an independent factor for better outcomes. Our study therefore provides a promising biomarker for the prognostic prediction of HCC and a potential therapeutic target for the disease.


Biomarker; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Mitofusin-2; Prognosis

Conflict of interest statement

The study was reviewed and approved by the Medical Ethics Committee of Jining No. 1 People’s Hospital. Since all specimens used were anonymous, the Medical Ethics Committee exempted patients from the need for informed consent.Not applicable.The authors declare that they have no competing interests.Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

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