In silico functional analyses and discovery of survival-associated microRNA signatures in pediatric osteosarcoma

Patricia C. Sanchez-Diaz, Tzu Hung Hsiao, Yi Zou, Aaron J. Sugalski, Josefine Heim-Hall, Yidong Chen, Anne Marie Langevin, Jaclyn Y. Hung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Purpose: Osteosarcoma is the most common bone tumor in children, adolescents, and young adults. In contrast to other childhood malignancies, no biomarkers have been consistently identified as predictors of outcome. This study was conducted to assess the microRNAs(miRs) expression signatures in pre-treatment osteosarcoma specimens and correlate with outcome to identify biomarkers for disease relapse. Results: A 42-miRs signature whose expression levels were associated with overall and relapse-free survival was identified. There were 8 common miRs between the two sets of survival-associated miRs. Bioinformatic analyses of these survivalassociated miRs suggested that they might regulate genes involved in ubiquitin proteasome system, TGFb, IGF, PTEN/AKT/mTOR, MAPK, PDGFR/RAF/MEK/ERK, and ErbB/HER pathways. Methods: The cohort consisted of 27 patients of 70% Mexican-American ethnicity. High-throughput RT-qPCR approach was used to generate quantitative expression of 754 miRs in the human genome. We examined tumor recurrence status, survival time and their association with miR expression levels by Cox proportional hazard regression analysis. TargetScan was used to predict miR/genes interactions, and functional analyses using KEGG, BioCarta, Gene Ontology were applied to these potential targets to predict deregulated pathways. Conclusions: Our findings suggested that these miRs might be potentially useful as prognostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets in pediatric osteosarcoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)599-608
Number of pages10
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2014


  • MicroRNA expression
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Pathways
  • Pediatric cancers
  • Prognosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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