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Prognostic value of NEK2 overexpression in digestive system cancers: a meta-analysis and systematic review

Authors Ren Q, Li B, Liu M, Hu Z, Wang Y

Received 2 April 2018

Accepted for publication 5 July 2018

Published 18 October 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 7169—7178


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Cho

Qian Ren,1,2 Bowen Li,3 Min Liu,1,2 Zenan Hu,1,2 Yuping Wang1,2

1Department of Gastroenterology, The First Hospital of Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, People’s Republic of China; 2Key Laboratory for Gastrointestinal Diseases of Gansu Province, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Pediatrics, The First Hospital of Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, People’s Republic of China

Background and objective: Many studies have reported that NEK2 is overexpressed in digestive system cancers (DSCs) and is also correlated with patient survival. We performed a meta-analysis to comprehensively evaluate the prognostic role of NEK2 expression in DSCs.
Materials and methods: A comprehensive literature search was performed using PubMed, EMBASE, and Web of Science. Synthesized hazard ratios (HRs) and odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were used to evaluate the influence of NEK2 overexpression on the prognosis and clinicopathological features of patients with DSCs.
Results: A total of 13 studies involving 1,917 patients was included. Overall, patients with high NEK2 expression had poorer overall survival (HR =1.45; 95% CI: 1.15–1.83; P=0.002) and disease-free survival/recurrence-free survival (HR =2.28; 95% CI: 1.54–3.37; P<0.0001). Furthermore, subgroup analysis also suggested that elevated NEK2 expression was associated with poorer overall survival in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HR =1.45; 95% CI: 1.05–2.00; P=0.02) and colorectal cancer (HR =2.03; 95% CI: 1.16–3.54; P=0.01). Additionally, NEK2 overexpression was also associated with pretreatment serum AFP level (OR =1.79; 95% CI: 1.23–2.61; P<0.01) and portal vein thrombosis (OR =2.74; 95% CI: 1.22–6.17; P=0.01) in hepatocellular carcinoma.
Conclusion: NEK2 might act as a useful prognostic predictor and a potential therapeutic target in DSCs. However, multicenter homogeneous studies with larger sample sizes are needed to further confirm our findings owing to some limitations in our meta-analysis.

Keywords: NEK2, digestive system cancer, prognostic, meta-analysis

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