Brother of regulator of imprinted sites (BORIS) is a DNA-binding protein that is normally expressed in the testes. However, aberrant expression of BORIS is observed in various carcinomas, indicating a malignant role for this protein. Furthermore, abolishment or reduction of suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) expression directed by promoter methylation is considered significant in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) carcinogenesis. This study aims to investigate BORIS and SOCS3 expression in HCC specimens and assess the prognostic significance of these proteins.
BORIS and SOCS3 expression was examined using immunohistochemistry in HCC tissues, along with corresponding paracarcinomatous, cirrhosis, hepatitis, and normal liver tissues. The expression levels of these 2 proteins in HCC were evaluated for their association with clinicopathological parameters. Survival analysis was performed using Kaplan–Meier curves, the log-rank test, and multivariate Cox regression analysis.
BORIS expression was significantly higher in HCC tissues than in normal liver tissues. In contrast, SOCS3 expression was dramatically lower in HCC tissues. BORIS expression was associated with tumor size, differentiation grade, satellite lesions, and recurrence while SOCS3 expression correlated with differentiation grade, vascular invasion, and recurrence. A significant negative correlation between BORIS and SOCS3 was observed. Patients with high BORIS expression and/or low SOCS3 expression had poorer postoperative survival. Patients with both these characteristics had the poorest prognostic outcome.
BORIS and SOCS3 are promising as valuable indicators for predicting HCC prognosis.