Intractable Rare Dis Res. 2022;11(3):133-142. (DOI: 10.5582/irdr.2022.01077)

Identification of potential core genes and miRNAs in pediatric ACC via bioinformatics analysis

Fang C, Ye Y, Wang F, Shen Y, You Y


Pediatric adrenocortical carcinomas (ACC) are rare aggressive neoplasms with heterogeneous prognosis, and often produce a most lethal malignant tumor, whereas its aetiology is still unclear. The aim of the present study was to identify the factors responsible for the development of pediatric ACC, a better understanding of the disease, and investigate new molecular biomarkers and therapeutic targets. To identify the key genes and miRNAs linked to pediatric ACC, as well as their potential molecular mechanisms, the GSEGSE75415 and GSE169253 microarray datasets were analyzed. A total of 329 differentially produced genes (DEGs) and 187 differentially produced miRNAs (DEMs) were obtained after analyzing the GSEGSE75415 and GSE169253 datasets, respectively. Next, 3,359 genes were obtained by overlapping the target mRNAs of DEMs. Following protein-protein interaction network and Gene Ontology analysis, the ten nodes with the highest degrees were screened as hub genes. Among them, the highly expressed hub genes, MAPK1 and EP300, were associated with a worse overall survival. Additionally, hsa-miR-376, hsa-miR-148, hsa-miR-139, and hsa-miR-1305 were strongly associated with poorer survival. We proposed that the hub genes (MAPK1, EP300, hsa-miR-376, hsa-miR-148, hsa-miR-139, and hsa-miR-1305) may have a definite impact on cellular proliferation and migration in adrenocortical tumors. The roles of these hub genes in adrenocortical tumors may provide novel insight to improve the diagnosis and treatment of patients with pediatric ACC.

KEYWORDS: pediatric adrenocortical carcinomas, hub genes, DEGs, microRNAs, prognosis

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