Gene Summary

Gene:LIFR; LIF receptor subunit alpha
Aliases: SWS, SJS2, STWS, CD118, LIF-R
Summary:This gene encodes a protein that belongs to the type I cytokine receptor family. This protein combines with a high-affinity converter subunit, gp130, to form a receptor complex that mediates the action of the leukemia inhibitory factor, a polyfunctional cytokine that is involved in cellular differentiation, proliferation and survival in the adult and the embryo. Mutations in this gene cause Schwartz-Jampel syndrome type 2, a disease belonging to the group of the bent-bone dysplasias. A translocation that involves the promoter of this gene, t(5;8)(p13;q12) with the pleiomorphic adenoma gene 1, is associated with salivary gland pleiomorphic adenoma, a common type of benign epithelial tumor of the salivary gland. Multiple splice variants encoding two different isoforms have been found for this gene. [provided by RefSeq, Jun 2018]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:leukemia inhibitory factor receptor
Source:NCBIAccessed: 01 September, 2019


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (2)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1994-2019)
Graph generated 01 September 2019 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • Radiography
  • Cytokines
  • Signal Transduction
  • Mutation
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Apoptosis
  • Messenger RNA
  • Neoplasm Proteins
  • Cell Movement
  • alpha-Fetoproteins
  • Cancer RNA
  • Stomach Cancer
  • Long Noncoding RNA
  • Breast Cancer
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Receptor alpha Subunit
  • Tumor Suppressor Gene
  • Promoter Regions
  • Leukemia Inhibitory Factor
  • Transcription
  • MicroRNAs
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Chromosome 5
  • RNA Interference
  • Osteochondrodysplasias
  • Interleukin-6
  • Oncostatin M
  • Gene Regulatory Networks
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Exostoses, Multiple Hereditary
  • Growth Inhibitors
  • Base Sequence
  • Lymphokines
  • Receptors, Cytokine
  • Risk Factors
  • Receptors, OSM-LIF
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
Tag cloud generated 01 September, 2019 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Latest Publications: LIFR (cancer-related)

Van De Maele K, Smulders C, Ecury-Goossen G, et al.
Stüve-Wiedemann syndrome: recurrent neonatal infections caused by impairment of JAK/STAT 3 pathway.
Clin Dysmorphol. 2019; 28(2):57-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
Stüve-Wiedemann syndrome (OMIM #601559) is a rare, autosomal recessive disorder characterized by skeletal dysplasia, consecutive infections, feeding difficulties and autonomic dysregulation. We present an Afro-Caribbean family with two siblings diagnosed with Stüve-Wiedemann syndrome. The underlying loss-of-function mutation in the leukemia inhibitory factor receptor gene is thought to impair proper functioning of the JAK/STAT 3 pathway. As this affects normal functioning of T-helper cells, these patients are prone to infections with uncommon pathogens as illustrated by this case.

Zhu H, Lu J, Zhao H, et al.
Functional Long Noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) in Clear Cell Kidney Carcinoma Revealed by Reconstruction and Comprehensive Analysis of the lncRNA-miRNA-mRNA Regulatory Network.
Med Sci Monit. 2018; 24:8250-8263 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND A variety of treatment strategies have been developed for clear cell kidney carcinoma (KIRC); however, there is still a need for effective therapeutic targets and prognostic molecular biomarkers. Given that long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) has been emerging as an important regulator in tumorigenesis, we explored potential functional lncRNAs in KIRC by comprehensively analyzing the lncRNA-miRNA-mRNA regulatory network with bioinformatics processing tools. MATERIAL AND METHODS RNA-seq/miRNA-seq data of KIRC in The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) were obtained and analyzed. The "edgeR" package in R software was used to identify differentially expressed lncRNAs (DElncRNAs, differentially expressed long noncoding RNAs), miRNAs (DEmiRNAs, differentially expressed micro RNAs), and mRNAs (DEmRNAs, differentially expressed messenger RNAs) in KIRC and normal samples. A global triple network was conducted based on the competing endogenous RNA (ceRNA) theory, and survival analysis was conducted by "survival" package in R software. RESULTS A total of 4246 DElncRNAs, 179 DEmiRNAs, and 5758 DEmRNAs were identified, among which a subset of them (321 lncRNAs, 26 miRNAs, and 1068 mRNAs) were found to constitute a global ceRNA network in KIRC. Four lncRNAs (ENTPD3-AS1, FGD5-AS1, LIFR-AS1, and UBAC2-AS1) were revealed to be potential therapeutic targets as well as prognostic biomarkers of KIRC by our extensive functional analysis. CONCLUSIONS We reported here the identification of functional lncRNAs in KIRC via a TCGA data-based bioinformatics analysis. We believe that this study might contribute to improving the comprehension of the lncRNA-mediated ceRNA regulatory mechanisms in the tumorigenesis of KIRC. Meanwhile, our results suggested that 4 lncRNAs might act as potential therapeutic targets or candidate prognostic biomarkers in KIRC.

Asahina M, Saito T, Hayashi T, et al.
Clinicopathological effect of PLAG1 fusion genes in pleomorphic adenoma and carcinoma ex pleomorphic adenoma with special emphasis on histological features.
Histopathology. 2019; 74(3):514-525 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Pleomorphic adenoma gene 1 (PLAG1) rearrangement is well known in pleomorphic adenoma (PA), which is histologically characterised by admixed epithelial and mesenchymal components. Multiple fusion variants of PLAG1 and HMGA2 have been reported; currently, however, little is known regarding the clinicopathological impacts of these fusion types METHODS AND RESULTS: We examined the PLAG1- and HMGA2-related fusion status in 105 PAs and 11 cases of carcinoma ex PAs (CXPA) arising from salivary glands and lacrimal glands to elucidate their correlation to the clinicopathological factors. Forty cases harboured PLAG1 fusion genes: CTNNB1-PLAG1 in 22 cases, CHCHD7-PLAG1 in 14 cases and LIFR-PLAG1 in four cases. Only two cases possessed HMGA2 fusion genes. The mean age of LIFR-PLAG1-positive cases was significantly higher than that of CTNNB1-PLAG1- and CHCHD7-PLAG1-positive cases (P = 0.0358). PAs located in the submandibular gland demonstrated CTNNB1-PLAG1 fusion at a significantly higher rate than other fusions (P = 0.0109). Histologically, PLAG1 fusion-positive cases exhibited chondroid formation and plasmacytoid features more commonly (P = 0.043, P = 0.015, respectively) and myxoid abundant feature less frequently (P = 0.031) than PLAG1 fusion-negative cases. For CXPAs, four CTNNB1-PLAG1 fusions were detected in two salivary duct carcinomas and two myoepithelial carcinomas. Ductal formation was observed frequently (90.9%) in residual PA.
CONCLUSIONS: The presence of PLAG1 fusion was associated with specific histological features in PA. Detecting the PLAG1 fusion gene and searching residual ductal formation in salivary gland malignant tumours with extensive hyalinisation could be useful for diagnosis.

Bastidas Torres AN, Cats D, Mei H, et al.
Genomic analysis reveals recurrent deletion of JAK-STAT signaling inhibitors HNRNPK and SOCS1 in mycosis fungoides.
Genes Chromosomes Cancer. 2018; 57(12):653-664 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Mycosis fungoides (MF) is the most common cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). Causative genetic alterations in MF are unknown. The low recurrence of pathogenic small-scale mutations (ie, nucleotide substitutions, indels) in the disease, calls for the study of additional aspects of MF genetics. Here, we investigated structural genomic alterations in tumor-stage MF by integrating whole-genome sequencing and RNA-sequencing. Multiple genes with roles in cell physiology (n = 113) and metabolism (n = 92) were found to be impacted by genomic rearrangements, including 47 genes currently implicated in cancer. Fusion transcripts involving genes of interest such as DOT1L, KDM6A, LIFR, TP53, and TP63 were also observed. Additionally, we identified recurrent deletions of genes involved in cell cycle control, chromatin regulation, the JAK-STAT pathway, and the PI-3-K pathway. Remarkably, many of these deletions result from genomic rearrangements. Deletion of tumor suppressors HNRNPK and SOCS1 were the most frequent genetic alterations in MF after deletion of CDKN2A. Notably, SOCS1 deletion could be detected in early-stage MF. In agreement with the observed genomic alterations, transcriptome analysis revealed up-regulation of the cell cycle, JAK-STAT, PI-3-K and developmental pathways. Our results position inactivation of HNRNPK and SOCS1 as potential driver events in MF development.

Zhang F, Li K, Pan M, et al.
miR-589 promotes gastric cancer aggressiveness by a LIFR-PI3K/AKT-c-Jun regulatory feedback loop.
J Exp Clin Cancer Res. 2018; 37(1):152 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: As novel biomarkers for various cancers, microRNAs negatively regulate genes expression via promoting mRNA degradation and suppressing mRNA translation. miR-589 has been reported to be deregulated in several human cancer types. However, its biological role has not been functionally characterized in gastric cancer. Here, we aim to investigate the biological effect of miR-589 on gastric cancer and to reveal the possible mechanism.
METHODS: Real-time PCR was performed to evaluate the expression of miR-589 in 34 paired normal and stomach tumor specimens, as well as gastric cell lines. Functional assays, such as wound healing, transwell assays and in vivo assays, were used to detect the biological effect of miR-589 and LIFR. We determined the role of miR-589 in gastric cancer tumorigenesis in vivo using xenograft nude models. Dual-luciferase report assays and Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay were performed for target evaluation, and the relationships were confirmed by western blot assay.
RESULT: MiR-589 expression was significantly higher in tumor tissues and gastric cancer cells than those in matched normal tissues and gastric epithelial cells, respectively. Clinically, overexpression of miR-589 is associated with tumor metastasis, invasion and poor prognosis of GC patients. Gain- and loss-of function experiments showed that miR-589 promoted cell migration, metastasis and invasion in vitro and lung metastasis in vivo. Mechanistically, we found that miR-589 directly targeted LIFR to activate PI3K/AKT/c-Jun signaling. Meanwhile, c-Jun bound to the promoter region of miR-589 and activated its transcription. Thus miR-589 regulated its expression in a feedback loop that promoted cell migration, metastasis and invasion.
CONCLUSION: Our study identified miR-589, as an oncogene, markedly induced cell metastasis and invasion via an atypical miR-589-LIFR-PI3K/AKT-c-Jun feedback loop, which suggested miR-589 as a potential biomarker and/or therapeutic target for the gastric cancer management.

Wang H, Xu D, Huang H, et al.
Detection of dysregulated competing endogenous RNA modules associated with clear cell kidney carcinoma.
Mol Med Rep. 2018; 18(2):1963-1972 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Recent evidence has suggested that competitive endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs) are important regulatory molecules in clear cell kidney carcinoma (KIRC) and their dysregulation may contribute to cancer pathogenesis. However, the critical roles of dysregulated ceRNAs in KIRC remain unknown. In the present study, a KIRC dysregulated ceRNA‑ceRNA network (KDCCNet) was constructed based on the 'ceRNA hypothesis' by integrating microRNA regulation and expression profiles in cancerous and normal tissues. Two dysregulated patterns of ceRNAs interaction (gain and loss) exist in KDCCNet. The two modules, which are 95% loss interactions and 97% gain interactions, were demonstrated to be able to distinguish normal samples from cancer samples. Two long non‑coding (lnc)‑RNAs (glucuronidase β pseudogene 11 and LIFR antisense RNA 1) demonstrated significant associations with KIRC prognosis. The present study of the KDCCNet revealed a novel biological mechanism for KIRC and provides novel lncRNAs as candidate prognostic biomarkers.

Lei C, Lv S, Wang H, et al.
Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Receptor Suppresses the Metastasis of Clear Cell Renal Cell Carcinoma Through Negative Regulation of the Yes-Associated Protein.
DNA Cell Biol. 2018; 37(8):659-669 [PubMed] Related Publications
The role of leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR), which is important in the signal transduction of the interleukin-6 cytokine family, is still undefined in clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC). Thus, we examined the function and mechanism of LIFR in ccRCC. Low LIFR expression correlated with a poor prognosis and an aggressive tumor phenotype. Moreover, integrated LIFR DNA and mRNA analysis revealed that promoter methylation and copy number variation contributed to the reduced LIFR expression. LIFR knockdown increased 786-O and Caki-2 cell invasion and migration. Notably, the Hippo pathway was highlighted as a potential downstream target of LIFR, where loss of LIFR inhibited the kinase activity of the pathway and increased the intracellular Yes-associated protein (YAP) level. Conversely, YAP inhibition impaired the LIFR-silencing promotion of cell migration, invasion, and cancer stem cell marker expression. Moreover, drug sensitivity analysis and the Cancer Cell Line Encyclopedia database revealed that LIFR-deficient cells had high sensitivity to a YAP inhibitor and to two other anticancer drugs (PHA-665752, PF2341066). Our study revealed that LIFR attenuates tumor metastasis by suppressing YAP expression, suggesting that LIFR may serve as a potential target for ccRCC treatment.

Liu K, Yao H, Wen Y, et al.
Functional role of a long non-coding RNA LIFR-AS1/miR-29a/TNFAIP3 axis in colorectal cancer resistance to pohotodynamic therapy.
Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis. 2018; 1864(9 Pt B):2871-2880 [PubMed] Related Publications
Colorectal Cancer (CRC) is one of the most common digestive system malignant tumors. Recently, PDT has been used as a first-line treatment for colon cancer; however, limited curative effect was obtained due to resistance of CRC to PDT. During the past decades, accumulating CRC-related long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), microRNAs (miRNAs) and mRNAs have been reported to exert diverse functions through various biological processes; their dysregulation might trigger and/or promote the pathological changes. Herein, we performed microarrays analysis to identify dysregulated lncRNAs, miRNAs and mRNAs in PDT-treated HCT116 cells to figure out the lncRNA-miRNA interactions related to the resistance of CRC to PDT treatment, and the downstream mRNA target, as well as the molecular mechanism. We found a total of 1096 lncRNAs dysregulated in PDT-treated CRC HCT116 cells; among them, LIFR-AS1 negatively interacted with miR-29a, one of the dysregulated miRNAs in PDT-treated CRC cells, to affect the resistance of CRC to PDT. LIFR-AS1 knockdown attenuated, whereas miR-29a inhibition enhanced the cellular effect of PDT on HCT116 cell proliferation and apoptosis. Furthermore, among the dysregulated mRNAs, TNFAIP3 was confirmed to be a direct target of miR-29a and exerted a similar effect to LIFR-AS1 on the cellular effects of PDT. In summary, LIFR-AS1 serves as a competitive endogenous RNA (ceRNA) for miR-29a to inhibit its expression and up-regulate downstream target TNFAIP3 expression, finally modulating the resistance of CRC to PDT. We provide an experimental basis for this lncRNA/miRNA/mRNA network being a promising target in CRC resistance to PDT treatment.

Wang M, Wang M, Wang Z, et al.
Long non-coding RNA-CTD-2108O9.1 represses breast cancer metastasis by influencing leukemia inhibitory factor receptor.
Cancer Sci. 2018; 109(6):1764-1774 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Breast cancer (BC) is an aggressive malignant disease in women worldwide with a high tendency to metastasize. However, important biomarkers for BC metastasis remain largely undefined. In the present study, we identified that long non-coding RNA-CTD-2108O9.1 is downregulated in BC tissues and cells and acts as a metastatic inhibitor of BC. Mechanistic investigation determined that lncRNA-CTD-2108O9.1 represses metastasis by targeting leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR), which is designated as a metastasis suppressor in BC. Our study characterizes a significant tumor suppressor active in BC metastasis repression through the known metastasis inhibitor LIFR.

Lv S, Ji L, Chen B, et al.
Histone methyltransferase KMT2D sustains prostate carcinogenesis and metastasis via epigenetically activating LIFR and KLF4.
Oncogene. 2018; 37(10):1354-1368 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Abnormalities in epigenetic modifiers are emerging as driving events in prostate cancer (PCa). The histone methyltransferase KMT2D, a frequently aberrant epigenetic modifier in various tumors, has an undefined role in PCa. Moreover, little is known regarding KMT2D's mutation in Chinese patients or its downstream signaling pathways and targets. Here, we profiled the mutational spectrum of 32 significantly PCa-associated genes by using disease-targeted sequencing, and found that KMT2D was highly mutated (63.04%, 29/46) in Chinese patients. Moreover, high KMT2D transcription was also associated with poor prognosis in an independent cohort (n = 51). In KMT2D-knockdown PC-3 and DU145 cells, cell proliferation (P < 0.01), invasion (P < 0.001), and migration (P < 0.01) were consequently suppressed. KMT2D depletion effectively suppressed tumor growth by 92.21% in vivo. Notably, integrative analyses of RNAseq and ChIPseq characterized two crucial genes downregulated by KMT2D, leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) and Kruppel-like factor-4 (KLF4), which are regulators in PI3K/Akt and EMT, respectively. Our present study revealed that KMT2D epigenetically activates PI3K/Akt pathway and EMT by targeting LIFR and KLF4 and thus serves as a putative epigenetic-based target for treating PCa.

Martins L, Giovani PA, Rebouças PD, et al.
Computational analysis for GNAQ mutations: New insights on the molecular etiology of Sturge-Weber syndrome.
J Mol Graph Model. 2017; 76:429-440 [PubMed] Related Publications
Somatic activating mutations in the GNAQ have been recently associated with several congenital genetic disorders and tumors; however, the molecular mechanism/etiology that leads to GNAQ somatic mosaic mutation are unknown. Here, we reported a case of Sturge-Weber Syndrome (SWS) manifesting cutaneous vascular malformations (hemifacial Port-wine stain), cerebral and ocular vascular abnormalities (including epilepsy and glaucoma) and harboring a c.548G>A (p.R183Q) somatic mosaic mutation in GNAQ. Computational modeling studies were performed to assistant with the comprehension of the functional impact of p.R183Q and p.Q209L mutations in GNAQ, which encodes a G protein subunit alpha q (Gαq). The p.R183Q mutation was predicted to abolish hydrogen bonds between R183 residue and GDP molecule, destabilizing the inactive GDP-bound conformation of the Gαq mutants. Furthermore, replacement of R183 by Q183 residue was predicted to promote conformation changes in protein surface features affecting the switch I region, a key region that undergoes conformational changes triggered by receptor binding during signal transduction. In addition, replacement of Q209 by L209 residue was predicted to affect the molecular interaction between Gαq and Gβ subunit, impairing formation of the inactive heterotrimeric complex. These findings, in association with PPI network analysis, indicate that p.R183Q and p.Q209L mutations result in the over-activation of different downstream effectors, which in turn will determine the distinct cell responses and phenotype. These findings bring new insights on molecular etiology of vascular malformations associated to SWS and on different mechanisms underlying hyperactivation of downstream pathways to Gαq.

Wang J, Song C, Tang H, et al.
miR-629-3p may serve as a novel biomarker and potential therapeutic target for lung metastases of triple-negative breast cancer.
Breast Cancer Res. 2017; 19(1):72 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Different breast cancer subtypes show distinct tropisms for sites of metastasis. Notably, the lung is the most common site for the first distant recurrence in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). The identification of novel biomarkers for lung metastasis is of great importance to improving the outcome of TNBC. In this study, we sought to identify a microRNA (miRNA)-based biomarker and therapeutic target for lung metastasis of TNBC.
METHODS: A total of 669 patients without de novo stage IV TNBC were recruited for this study. miRNA profiling was conducted in the discovery cohort. Diagnostic accuracy and prognostic values of candidate miRNAs were evaluated in the training and validation cohorts, respectively. The biological functions of candidate miRNAs, as well as potential targets, were further evaluated through bioinformatic analysis as well as by performing in vitro and in vivo assays.
RESULTS: In the discovery set, we found that miR-629-3p was specifically upregulated in both metastatic foci (fold change 144.16, P < 0.0001) and primary tumors (fold change 74.37, P = 0.004) in patients with lung metastases. In the training set, the ROC curve showed that miR-629-3p yielded high diagnostic accuracy in discriminating patients with lung metastasis from patients without recurrence (AUC 0.865, 95% CI 0.800-0.930, P < 0.0001). Although miR-629-3p predicted poor overall survival and disease-free survival in the validation set, it failed to show significance after multivariate analysis. Notably, logistic regression analyses confirmed that miR-629-3p was an independent risk factor for lung metastasis (OR 4.1, 95% CI 2.5-6.6, P < 0.001). Inhibition of miR-629-3p drastically attenuated the viability and migration of TNBC cells, and it markedly suppressed lung metastasis in vivo. Furthermore, we identified the leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR), a well-known metastatic suppressive gene, to be a direct target of miR-629-3p.
CONCLUSIONS: miR-629-3p may serve as a novel biomarker and potential therapeutic target for lung metastases of TNBC mediated via LIFR.

Won H, Moreira D, Gao C, et al.
TLR9 expression and secretion of LIF by prostate cancer cells stimulates accumulation and activity of polymorphonuclear MDSCs.
J Leukoc Biol. 2017; 102(2):423-436 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Proinflammatory signals promote prostate tumorigenesis and progression, but their origins and downstream effects remain unclear. We recently demonstrated that the expression of an innate immune receptor, TLR9, by prostate cancer cells is critical for their tumor-propagating potential. We investigated whether cancer cell-intrinsic TLR9 signaling alters composition of the prostate tumor microenvironment. We generated Ras/Myc (RM9) and Myc-driven (Myc-CaP) prostate cancer cells expressing the tetracycline-inducible gene

Wang Y, Xu X, Yu S, et al.
Systematic characterization of A-to-I RNA editing hotspots in microRNAs across human cancers.
Genome Res. 2017; 27(7):1112-1125 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
RNA editing, a widespread post-transcriptional mechanism, has emerged as a new player in cancer biology. Recent studies have reported key roles for individual miRNA editing events, but a comprehensive picture of miRNA editing in human cancers remains largely unexplored. Here, we systematically characterized the miRNA editing profiles of 8595 samples across 20 cancer types from miRNA sequencing data of The Cancer Genome Atlas and identified 19 adenosine-to-inosine (A-to-I) RNA editing hotspots. We independently validated 15 of them by perturbation experiments in several cancer cell lines. These miRNA editing events show extensive correlations with key clinical variables (e.g., tumor subtype, disease stage, and patient survival time) and other molecular drivers. Focusing on the RNA editing hotspot in miR-200b, a key tumor metastasis suppressor, we found that the miR-200b editing level correlates with patient prognosis opposite to the pattern observed for the wild-type miR-200b expression. We further experimentally showed that, in contrast to wild-type miRNA, the edited miR-200b can promote cell invasion and migration through its impaired ability to inhibit

Gulluoglu S, Sahin M, Tuysuz EC, et al.
Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Promotes Aggressiveness of Chordoma.
Oncol Res. 2017; 25(7):1177-1188 [PubMed] Related Publications
Chordomas are rare tumors of the spine and skull base that are locally destructive and resistant to chemotherapy and radiation therapy, with a poor prognosis and limited therapeutic options. Chordoma patients have a long life expectancy with high mortality from the disease. Cancer stem cells, which are known to exist in chordomas, have extensive proliferative and self-renewal potential and are responsible for maintaining tumor heterogeneity along with chemotherapy and radiotherapy resistance. Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) has multiple functions in stem cell biology, the immune response, and cancer, and is potentially a key molecule that allows cancer stem cells to self-renew. The purpose of this study was to determine whether LIF increases the aggressive traits of chordoma cells and leads to a poor prognosis in patients. Chordoma cell lines were treated with LIF, and functional tests were done. Twenty skull base chordoma samples were checked for levels of LIF and a correlation with clinicopathological features. The whole transcriptome microarray was used to observe changes in gene expression. We observed increased migration, invasion, tumorosphere formation, colony formation, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, and chemoresistance accompanied by a dramatic elevation in inflammatory gene networks and pathways in chordomas. The expression of LIF was associated with tumor size and a poorer overall survival. Microarray and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction assessments suggest that LIF can facilitate tumor-promoting inflammation. Results indicate that LIF plays a role in maintaining cancer stem cells in chordomas.

Zeng H, Qu J, Jin N, et al.
Feedback Activation of Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Receptor Limits Response to Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors in Breast Cancer.
Cancer Cell. 2016; 30(3):459-473 [PubMed] Related Publications
Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors have demonstrated clinical benefits in subtypes of hematological malignancies. However, the efficacy of HDAC inhibitors in solid tumors remains uncertain. This study takes breast cancer as a model to understand mechanisms accounting for limited response of HDAC inhibitors in solid tumors and to seek combination solutions. We discover that feedback activation of leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) signaling in breast cancer limits the response to HDAC inhibition. Mechanistically, HDAC inhibition increases histone acetylation at the LIFR gene promoter, which recruits bromodomain protein BRD4, upregulates LIFR expression, and activates JAK1-STAT3 signaling. Importantly, JAK1 or BRD4 inhibition sensitizes breast cancer to HDAC inhibitors, implicating combination inhibition of HDAC with JAK1 or BRD4 as potential therapies for breast cancer.

Nwokeoha S, Carlisle R, Cleveland RO
The Application of Clinical Lithotripter Shock Waves to RNA Nucleotide Delivery to Cells.
Ultrasound Med Biol. 2016; 42(10):2478-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
The delivery of genes into cells through the transfer of ribonucleic acids (RNAs) has been found to cause a change in the level of target protein expression. RNA-based transfection is conceptually more efficient than commonly delivered plasmid DNA because it does not require division or damage of the nuclear envelope, thereby increasing the chances of the cell remaining viable. Shock waves (SWs) have been found to induce cellular uptake by transiently altering the permeability of the plasma membrane, thereby overcoming a critical step in gene therapy. However, accompanying SW bio-effects include dose-dependent irreversible cell injury and cytotoxicity. Here, the effect of SWs generated by a clinical lithotripter on the viability and permeabilisation of three different cell lines in vitro was investigated. Comparison of RNA stability before and after SW exposure revealed no statistically significant difference. Optimal SW exposure parameters were identified to minimise cell death and maximise permeabilisation, and applied to enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) messenger RNA (mRNA) or anti-eGFP small interfering RNA delivery. As a result, eGFP mRNA expression levels increased up to 52-fold in CT26 cells, whereas a 2-fold decrease in GFP expression was achieved after anti-eGFP small interfering RNA delivery to MCF-7/GFP cells. These results indicate that SW parameters can be employed to achieve effective nucleotide delivery, laying the foundation for non-invasive and high-tolerability RNA-based gene therapy.

Ma D, Jing X, Shen B, et al.
Leukemia inhibitory factor receptor negatively regulates the metastasis of pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and in vivo.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 36(2):827-36 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pancreatic cancer (PC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Frequent metastasis and recurrence are the main reasons for the poor prognosis of PC patients. Thus, the discovery of new biomarkers and wider insights into the mechanisms involved in pancreatic tumorigenesis and metastasis is crucial. In the present study, we report that leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) suppresses tumorigenesis and metastasis of PC cells both in vitro and in vivo. LIFR expression was significantly lower in PC tissues and was associated with local invasion (P=0.047), lymph node metastasis (P=0.014) and tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage (P=0.002). Overexpression of LIFR significantly suppressed PC cell colony formation (P=0.005), migration (P=0.003), invasion (P=0.010) and wound healing ability (P=0.013) in vitro, while opposing results were observed after LIFR was silenced. Furthermore, animal xenograft and metastasis models confirm that the in vivo results were consistent with the outcomes in vitro. Meanwhile, LIFR inhibited the expression of β-catenin, vimentin and slug and induced the expression of E-cadherin, suggesting that the epithelial-mesenchymal transition regulation pathway may underlie the mechanism. These results indicate that LIFR negatively regulates the metastasis of PC cells.

Comi AM, Sahin M, Hammill A, et al.
Leveraging a Sturge-Weber Gene Discovery: An Agenda for Future Research.
Pediatr Neurol. 2016; 58:12-24 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Sturge-Weber syndrome (SWS) is a vascular neurocutaneous disorder that results from a somatic mosaic mutation in GNAQ, which is also responsible for isolated port-wine birthmarks. Infants with SWS are born with a cutaneous capillary malformation (port-wine birthmark) of the forehead or upper eyelid which can signal an increased risk of brain and/or eye involvement prior to the onset of specific symptoms. This symptom-free interval represents a time when a targeted intervention could help to minimize the neurological and ophthalmologic manifestations of the disorder. This paper summarizes a 2015 SWS workshop in Bethesda, Maryland that was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. Meeting attendees included a diverse group of clinical and translational researchers with a goal of establishing research priorities for the next few years. The initial portion of the meeting included a thorough review of the recent genetic discovery and what is known of the pathogenesis of SWS. Breakout sessions related to neurology, dermatology, and ophthalmology aimed to establish SWS research priorities in each field. Key priorities for future development include the need for clinical consensus guidelines, further work to develop a clinical trial network, improvement of tissue banking for research purposes, and the need for multiple animal and cell culture models of SWS.

Kleeff J, Korc M, Apte M, et al.
Pancreatic cancer.
Nat Rev Dis Primers. 2016; 2:16022 [PubMed] Related Publications
Pancreatic cancer is a major cause of cancer-associated mortality, with a dismal overall prognosis that has remained virtually unchanged for many decades. Currently, prevention or early diagnosis at a curable stage is exceedingly difficult; patients rarely exhibit symptoms and tumours do not display sensitive and specific markers to aid detection. Pancreatic cancers also have few prevalent genetic mutations; the most commonly mutated genes are KRAS, CDKN2A (encoding p16), TP53 and SMAD4 - none of which are currently druggable. Indeed, therapeutic options are limited and progress in drug development is impeded because most pancreatic cancers are complex at the genomic, epigenetic and metabolic levels, with multiple activated pathways and crosstalk evident. Furthermore, the multilayered interplay between neoplastic and stromal cells in the tumour microenvironment challenges medical treatment. Fewer than 20% of patients have surgically resectable disease; however, neoadjuvant therapies might shift tumours towards resectability. Although newer drug combinations and multimodal regimens in this setting, as well as the adjuvant setting, appreciably extend survival, ∼80% of patients will relapse after surgery and ultimately die of their disease. Thus, consideration of quality of life and overall survival is important. In this Primer, we summarize the current understanding of the salient pathophysiological, molecular, translational and clinical aspects of this disease. In addition, we present an outline of potential future directions for pancreatic cancer research and patient management.

Uchiyama Y, Nakashima M, Watanabe S, et al.
Ultra-sensitive droplet digital PCR for detecting a low-prevalence somatic GNAQ mutation in Sturge-Weber syndrome.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:22985 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Droplet digital PCR (ddPCR), a method for measuring target nucleic acid sequence quantity, is useful for determining somatic mutation rates using TaqMan probes. In this study, the detection limit of copy numbers of test DNA by ddPCR was determined based on Poisson distribution. Peptide nucleic acid (PNA), which strongly hybridises to target lesions, can inhibit target amplification by PCR. Therefore, by combination of PCR with PNA and ddPCR (PNA-ddPCR), the detection limit could be lowered. We reanalysed a somatic GNAQ mutation (c.548G > A) in patients with Sturge-Weber syndrome (SWS) using ddPCR and PNA-ddPCR. Importantly, among three patients previously found to be mutation negative by next-generation sequencing, two patients had the GNAQ mutation with a mutant allele frequency of less than 1%. Furthermore, we were able to find the same mutation in blood leukocyte or saliva DNA derived from four out of 40 SWS patients. Vascular anomalies and blood leukocytes originate from endothelial cells and haemangioblasts, respectively, which are both of mesodermal origin. Therefore, blood leukocytes may harbour the GNAQ mutation, depending on the time when the somatic mutation is acquired. These data suggest the possibility of diagnosis using blood DNA in some patients with SWS.

Yang J, Qian S, Cai X, et al.
Chikusetsusaponin IVa Butyl Ester (CS-IVa-Be), a Novel IL6R Antagonist, Inhibits IL6/STAT3 Signaling Pathway and Induces Cancer Cell Apoptosis.
Mol Cancer Ther. 2016; 15(6):1190-200 [PubMed] Related Publications
The activation of IL6/STAT3 signaling is associated with the pathogenesis of many cancers. Agents that suppress IL6/STAT3 signaling have cancer-therapeutic potential. In this study, we found that chikusetsusaponin IVa butyl ester (CS-IVa-Be), a triterpenoid saponin extracted from Acanthopanas gracilistylus W.W.Smith, induced cancer cell apoptosis. CS-IVa-Be inhibited constitutive and IL6-induced STAT3 activation, repressed STAT3 DNA-binding activity, STAT3 nuclear translocation, IL6-induced STAT3 luciferase reporter activity, IL6-induced STAT3-regulated antiapoptosis gene expression in MDA-MB-231 cells, and IL6-induced TF-1 cell proliferation. Surprisingly, CS-IVa-Be inhibited IL6 family cytokines rather than other cytokines induced STAT3 activation. Further studies indicated that CS-IVa-Be is an antagonist of IL6 receptor via directly binding to the IL6Rα with a Kd of 663 ± 74 nmol/L and the GP130 (IL6Rβ) with a Kd of 1,660 ± 243 nmol/L, interfering with the binding of IL6 to IL6R (IL6Rα and GP130) in vitro and in cancer cells. The inhibitory effect of CS-IVa-Be on the IL6-IL6Rα-GP130 interaction was relatively specific as CS-IVa-Be showed higher affinity to IL6Rα than to LIFR (Kd: 4,910 ± 1,240 nmol/L) and LeptinR (Kd: 4,990 ± 915 nmol/L). We next demonstrated that CS-IVa-Be not only directly induced cancer cell apoptosis but also sensitized MDA-MB-231 cells to TRAIL-induced apoptosis via upregulating DR5. Our findings suggest that CS-IVa-Be as a novel IL6R antagonist inhibits IL6/STAT3 signaling pathway and sensitizes the MDA-MB-231 cells to TRAIL-induced cell death. Mol Cancer Ther; 15(6); 1190-200. ©2016 AACR.

Ghosh A, Ghosh A, Datta S, et al.
Hepatic miR-126 is a potential plasma biomarker for detection of hepatitis B virus infected hepatocellular carcinoma.
Int J Cancer. 2016; 138(11):2732-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
Controversies about the origin of circulating miRNAs have encouraged us to identify organ specific circulating miRNAs as disease biomarkers. To identify liver-specific miRNAs for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), global expression profiling of miRNAs in liver tissue of HBV-HCC and HBV-control with no or mild fibrosis was evaluated. A total of 40 differentially expressed miRNAs were identified in HCC. Among ten highly altered miRNAs, six miRNAs were successfully validated in tissues, whereas only two miRNAs, miR-126 and miR-142-3p showed increased expression in plasma of HBV-HCC compared to HBV-non-HCC patients. Subsequently, ROC curve analysis revealed that neither miR-126 nor miR-142-3p performed better than AFP in discriminating HCC from non-HCC while combination of each with AFP showed significantly higher efficiency rather than AFP alone (AUC: 0.922, 0.908 vs. 0.88; sensitivity: 0.84, 0.86 vs. 0.82 and specificity: 0.92, 0.94 vs. 0.86 respectively). Interestingly, triple combination of markers (miR-126 + miR-142-3p + AFP) showed no additive effect on efficiency (AUC: 0.925) over the dual combination. Again, the expression of only miR-126 was noticed significantly higher in HBV-HCC patients with low-AFP [<250 ng/ml] compared to either non-HCC or liver cirrhosis (AUC: 0.77, 0.64, respectively). Furthermore, no alteration in expression of mir-126 in HCV-HCC or non-viral-HCC revealed that miR-126 + AFP might be specific to HBV-HCC. To understand the physiological role of these two miRNAs in hepato-carcinogenesis, target genes related to cancer pathways (APAF1, APC2, CDKN2A, IRS1, CRKL, LIFR, EGR2) were verified. Thus, combination of circulating miR-126 + AFP is a promising noninvasive diagnostic biomarker for HBV-HCC and may be useful in the management of HCC patients.

Wang L, Li J, Zhao H, et al.
Identifying the crosstalk of dysfunctional pathways mediated by lncRNAs in breast cancer subtypes.
Mol Biosyst. 2016; 12(3):711-20 [PubMed] Related Publications
Crosstalk among abnormal pathways widely occurs in human cancer and generally leads to insensitivity to cancer treatment. How long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) participate in the regulation of an abnormal pathway crosstalk in human cancer is largely unknown. Here, we proposed a strategy that integrates mRNA and lncRNA expression profiles for systematic identification of lncRNA-mediated crosstalk among risk pathways in different breast cancer subtypes. We identified 12 to 44 crosstalking pathway pairs mediated by 28 to 49 lncRNAs in four breast cancer subtypes. An LncRNA-mediated crosstalking pathway network in each breast cancer subtype was then constructed. We observed a number of breast cancer subtype-specific crosstalks of risk pathways. These subtype-specific lncRNA-mediated pathway crosstalks largely determined subtype-selective functions. Notably, we observed that lncRNAs mediated the crosstalk of pathways by cooperating with known important protein-coding genes, which play core roles in the deterioration of breast cancer. And we also identified key lncRNAs contributing to the crosstalk network in each subtype. As an example, the low expression of LIFR-AS1 was associated with poor survival in LumB subtype, and its cooperated genes IL1R and TGFBR located at the most upstream of the MAPK signaling pathway shared a common cascade path (p38 MAPKs-MEF2C) that can result in proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. In summary, we offer an effective way to characterize complex crosstalks mediated by lncRNAs in breast cancer subtypes, which can be applied to other diseases and provide useful information for understanding the pathogenesis of human cancer.

Zhao JH, Sun JX, Song YX, et al.
A novel long noncoding RNA-LOWEG is low expressed in gastric cancer and acts as a tumor suppressor by inhibiting cell invasion.
J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2016; 142(3):601-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) have been reported to be involved in the development of multiple cancers. The aim of this study was to report the identification of lncRNA-CTD-2108O9.1, which we have named lncRNA low expressed in gastric cancer (lncRNA-LOWEG), and investigate its role in cancer development.
METHODS: Total RNA was extracted from the tissues of 94 patients with GC, one normal gastric epithelial cell line and four GC cell lines. Expression levels of lncRNA-LOWEG were determined by real-time PCR. Moreover, CCK-8 proliferation assay, transwell cell invasion assay and flow cytometry were performed to study the effects of lncRNA-LOWEG on SGC-7901 cell proliferation, cell invasion and cell cycle progression. Lastly, western blot and real-time PCR were used to verify the potential target genes of lncRNA-LOWEG.
RESULTS: Significantly reduced expression of lncRNA-LOWEG was found in gastric cancer tissues and cell lines (SGC-7901, AGS, BGC-823 and HG-27) compared with patient-matched nontumorous adjacent tissues (P < 0.01) or the normal gastric cell line GES-1 (P < 0.05). Moreover, the transwell assay showed that the number of cells capable of passing through the Matrigel was significantly reduced after lncRNA-LOWEG transfection (P < 0.05). However, lncRNA-LOWEG overexpression did not significantly influence cell proliferation (P > 0.05) and cell cycle progression (P > 0.05). Lastly, western blot and real-time PCR analysis suggested that lncRNA-LOWEG is positively correlated with the expression of leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) gene at the translational level.
CONCLUSIONS: LncRNA-LOWEG is a tumor suppressor that inhibits GC cell invasion. And LIFR gene is up-regulated by lncRNA-LOWEG.

Forsberg LA, Rasi C, Pekar G, et al.
Signatures of post-zygotic structural genetic aberrations in the cells of histologically normal breast tissue that can predispose to sporadic breast cancer.
Genome Res. 2015; 25(10):1521-35 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Sporadic breast cancer (SBC) is a common disease without robust means of early risk prediction in the population. We studied 282 females with SBC, focusing on copy number aberrations in cancer-free breast tissue (uninvolved margin, UM) outside the primary tumor (PT). In total, 1162 UMs (1-14 per breast) were studied. Comparative analysis between UM(s), PT(s), and blood/skin from the same patient as a control is the core of the study design. We identified 108 patients with at least one aberrant UM, representing 38.3% of cases. Gains in gene copy number were the principal type of mutations in microscopically normal breast cells, suggesting that oncogenic activation of genes via increased gene copy number is a predominant mechanism for initiation of SBC pathogenesis. The gain of ERBB2, with overexpression of HER2 protein, was the most common aberration in normal cells. Five additional growth factor receptor genes (EGFR, FGFR1, IGF1R, LIFR, and NGFR) also showed recurrent gains, and these were occasionally present in combination with the gain of ERBB2. All the aberrations found in the normal breast cells were previously described in cancer literature, suggesting their causative, driving role in pathogenesis of SBC. We demonstrate that analysis of normal cells from cancer patients leads to identification of signatures that may increase risk of SBC and our results could influence the choice of surgical intervention to remove all predisposing cells. Early detection of copy number gains suggesting a predisposition toward cancer development, long before detectable tumors are formed, is a key to the anticipated shift into a preventive paradigm of personalized medicine for breast cancer.

Guo H, Cheng Y, Martinka M, McElwee K
High LIFr expression stimulates melanoma cell migration and is associated with unfavorable prognosis in melanoma.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(28):25484-98 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Increased or decreased expression of LIF receptor (LIFr) has been reported in several human cancers, including skin cancer, but its role in melanoma is unknown. In this study, we investigated the expression pattern of LIFr in melanoma and assessed its prognostic value. Using tissue microarrays consisting of 441 melanomas and 96 nevi, we found that no normal nevi showed high LIFr expression. LIFr staining was significantly increased in primary melanoma compared to dysplastic nevi (P = 0.0003) and further increased in metastatic melanoma (P = 0.0000). Kaplan-Meier survival curve and univariate Cox regression analyses showed that increased expression of LIFr was correlated with poorer 5-year patient survival (overall survival, P = 0.0000; disease-specific survival, P = 0.0000). Multivariate Cox regression analyses indicated that increased LIFr expression was an independent prognostic marker for primary melanoma (P = 0.036). LIFr knockdown inhibited melanoma cell migration in wound healing assays and reduced stress fiber formation. LIFr knockdown correlated with STAT3 suppression, but not YAP, suggesting that LIFr activation might stimulate melanoma cell migration through the STAT3 pathway. Our data indicate that strong LIFr expression identifies potentially highly malignant melanocytic lesions at an early stage and LIFr may be a potential target for the development of early intervention therapeutics.

Knipe M, Stanbury R, Unger S, Chakraborty M
Stuve-Wiedemann syndrome with a novel mutation.
BMJ Case Rep. 2015; 2015 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
We describe a female infant born at term to consanguineous parents, with a suspicion of skeletal dysplasia in utero. At birth, she had short limbs, camptodactyly, dysphagia leading to nasogastric tube feeds, and skeletal survey demonstrating dysplasia of long bones and spine. During infancy, she also developed episodes of respiratory failure necessitating admission to intensive care, and periods of hyperhidrosis managed at home. A basic genetic screen did not reveal any abnormalities. Contact was made with the European Skeletal Dysplasia Network, and a provisional diagnosis of Stuve-Wiedemann syndrome was suggested based on this review. Specific genetic tests showed a previously unreported homozygous mutation of leukaemia inhibitory factor receptor gene, confirming the diagnosis. This is the first case with a novel mutation, reported from the UK. For paediatricians and neonatologists, the European Skeletal Dysplasia Network is a valuable resource to reach a specific diagnosis.

Morton SD, Cadamuro M, Brivio S, et al.
Leukemia inhibitory factor protects cholangiocarcinoma cells from drug-induced apoptosis via a PI3K/AKT-dependent Mcl-1 activation.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(28):26052-64 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cholangiocarcinoma is an aggressive, strongly chemoresistant liver malignancy. Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), an IL-6 family cytokine, promotes progression of various carcinomas. To investigate the role of LIF in cholangiocarcinoma, we evaluated the expression of LIF and its receptor (LIFR) in human samples. LIF secretion and LIFR expression were assessed in established and primary human cholangiocarcinoma cell lines. In cholangiocarcinoma cells, we tested LIF effects on proliferation, invasion, stem cell-like phenotype, chemotherapy-induced apoptosis (gemcitabine+cisplatin), expression levels of pro-apoptotic (Bax) and anti-apoptotic (Mcl-1) proteins, with/without PI3K inhibition, and of pSTAT3, pERK1/2, pAKT. LIF effect on chemotherapy-induced apoptosis was evaluated after LIFR silencing and Mcl-1 inactivation.Results show that LIF and LIFR expression were higher in neoplastic than in control cholangiocytes; LIF was also expressed by tumor stromal cells. LIF had no effects on cholangiocarcinoma cell proliferation, invasion, and stemness signatures, whilst it counteracted drug-induced apoptosis. Upon LIF stimulation, decreased apoptosis was associated with Mcl-1 and pAKT up-regulation and abolished by PI3K inhibition. LIFR silencing and Mcl-1 blockade restored drug-induced apoptosis.In conclusion, autocrine and paracrine LIF signaling promote chemoresistance in cholangiocarcinoma by up-regulating Mcl-1 via a novel STAT3- and MAPK-independent, PI3K/AKT-dependent pathway. Targeting LIF signaling may increase CCA responsiveness to chemotherapy.

Luo Q, Wang C, Jin G, et al.
LIFR functions as a metastasis suppressor in hepatocellular carcinoma by negatively regulating phosphoinositide 3-kinase/AKT pathway.
Carcinogenesis. 2015; 36(10):1201-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the leading causes for cancer related mortality worldwide. Poor prognosis of HCC patients is mainly due to frequent metastasis and recurrence. Deregulation of metastasis suppressors in malignant cells plays critical roles during cancer metastasis. Thus, novel metastasis suppressors are urgently needed to be uncovered to shed new light on molecular mechanisms driving HCC metastasis. In the present study, decreased expression of leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) was demonstrated in HCC, and its expression levels were even lower in HCC with metastasis. Downregulated LIFR expression predicted poor prognosis in HCC patients. LIFR was an independent and significant risk factor for their recurrence and survival. Silencing LIFR resulted in forced metastasis of HCC cells, whereas ectopic overexpression of LIFR attenuated migration and invasion of HCC cells in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, LIFR knockdown could activate phosphoinositide 3-kinase/V-akt Murine Thymoma Viral Oncogene Homolog (PI3K/AKT) signaling through enhancing phosphorylation of Janus kinase 1 (JAK1), which successively promoted matrix metalloproteinase 13 (MMP13) expression and HCC metastasis. Combination of LIFR and p-AKT or MMP13 was a more powerful predictor of poor prognosis for HCC patients. Together, these findings conclude that LIFR functions as a novel metastasis suppressor in HCC and may serve as a prognostic biomarker for HCC patients.

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