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Dephosphorylated cofilin expression is associated with poor prognosis in cases of human breast cancer: a tissue microarray analysis

Authors Maimaiti Y, Liu ZM, Tan J, Abudureyimu K, Huang BX, Liu CP, Guo YW, Wang CW, Nie X, Zhou J, Huang T

Received 27 February 2016

Accepted for publication 15 June 2016

Published 19 October 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 6461—6466


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Ram Prasad

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Min Li

Yusufu Maimaiti,1,2,* Zeming Liu,1,* Jie Tan,1 Kelimu Abudureyimu,2 Bangxing Huang,3 Chunping Liu,1 Yawen Guo,1 Changwen Wang,1 Xiu Nie,3 Jing Zhou,1 Tao Huang1

1Department of Breast and Thyroid Surgery, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, 2Department of General Surgery, Research Institute of Minimally Invasive, People’s Hospital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Urumqi, 3Department of Pathology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Background: Proteins in the cofilin pathway regulate actin dynamics and may be involved in cancer cell migration and invasion. However, there are no direct data that suggest that dephosphorylated cofilin can affect breast cancer prognosis.
Methods: We assessed the expressions of cofilin and phosphorylated cofilin (P-cofilin) in breast cancer tissue microarrays (290 patients, mean follow-up: 95.7±2.49 months) to evaluate dephosphorylated cofilin and its relationship with breast cancer prognosis. The associations of pathological characteristics with cumulative survival were evaluated using Kaplan–Meier analysis.
Results: Univariate analyses revealed that overall survival was associated with cofilin levels, N category, TNM stage, estrogen receptor status, progesterone receptor status, and molecular subtypes. Cofilin status and TNM stage independently affected overall survival, although P-cofilin expression was not associated with patient survival. In the P-cofilin-negative subgroup, cofilin expression was significantly associated with patient survival, although cofilin expression was not significantly associated with patient survival in the P-cofilin-positive subgroup. We further analyzed the P-cofilin-negative cases and found that Ki-67 expression was significantly elevated in the subgroup that was strongly positive for cofilin (P=0.002).
Conclusion: Among P-cofilin-negative patients with breast cancer, cofilin expression defines a population of patients with lower overall survival, which suggests that dephosphorylated cofilin expression might predict the prognosis in cases of P-cofilin-negative breast cancer. Furthermore, our results suggest that inhibitors of dephosphorylated cofilin expression may provide therapeutic benefits in patients with breast cancer.

Keywords: cofilin, P-cofilin, poor prognosis, breast cancer

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